Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Frequent flyer makes the airways safe

After experiencing a near-collision on a plane in which he was a passenger, frequent world traveler Jim Sensenbrenner got on the phone with the Federal Aviation Administration to demand action, reports.

"Upon landing at Reagan National Airport, I immediately called the FAA to alert them of the situation and requested that they examine the conditions that led to this near collision over a heavily populated area," Sensenbrenner said in a statement. "While no one ever wants to be in such a circumstance, I am pleased that the FAA acted quickly to identify the error with air traffic control operations."
If he can get that kind of action, maybe we should consider sending him on a fact-finding mission to Afghanistan. If he came under fire, maybe he'd call the Pentagon and end the war.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Big Jim's stamp collection vs. Moore's net worth

Jim Sensenbrenner's stock portfolio has gotten a little ink lately, what with all of his shares in BP not presenting a conflict, in his mind, to him sitting on a panel investigating BP's mess in the Gulf.

There's also the annual Journal Sentinel story about the finances of the Wisconsin Congressional delegation, which says Sensenbrenner, who's worth $9.9-million but has disposed of all of his inherited stock in Kimberly Clark, his grandaddy's company.

Missing was the annual measure that's always been the most intriguing one: Is Sensenbrenner's stamp collection worth more than Rep. Gwen Moore's total net worth? Two years ago they were equal at about $110,000 each.

The stamp collection's value keeps going up 10 grand a year, to $130,000 now. Moore's net worth may surpass $130,000 now, but it's not clear. She reported assets worth somewhere between $19,000 and $110,000, plus a house valued at $95,000. So she may now be worth more than Big Jim's stamp collection, but not by much.

We're talking about dollars, of course. By almost any other measure, Moore is worth a lot more than Sensenbrenner.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Selfish, self-centered Sensenbrenner


Rep. F. Jim Sensenbrenner, who always puts himself first, has outdone himself on the BP disaster in the Gulf.

AP reports:

WASHINGTON — A multimillionaire House Republican who owns thousands of shares of BP stock has no plans to recuse himself from a congressional investigation related to the Gulf oil spill or from votes on Capitol Hill that could affect his investments in the oil company.

Rep. James Sensenbrenner of Wisconsin has avoided directly criticizing BP for the spill itself. At the same time, he has watched his BP stock tank in value.

Worth more than $251,000 just a few years ago, Sensenbrenner’s 3,604 shares of BP PLC stock had plunged in value to just $118,000 by the end of trading Thursday. That’s roughly half their value the day before the April 20 oil spill. Sensenbrenner has said his net worth is about $10 million.

The No. 2 Republican on the House Judiciary Committee and a former chairman, Sensenbrenner has kept a low profile on the issue, but now he’s coming out swinging: He has written a letter to President Barack Obama questioning BP’s actions and the adequacy of the White House response — but refrains from directly criticizing BP for the spill.

Sensenbrenner, you may recall, is one of the few members of Congress who voted against relief for victims of Hurricane Katrina. Heartless is the word to describe him.

Sensenbrenner's complaints about Obama hurting his stock value provided some fodder for the Cheddarsphhere:

Illusory Tenant: Sensenbrenner angry he didn't sell BP in April.

Rock Netroots: BP Stock Plummets -- Congressman Throws Tarballs.

The Political Environment: His BP share in decline, Sensenbrenner rips Obama

Even in this anti-incumbent, anti-Washington year, Sensenbrenner's conservative suburban district is so safe that he is probably not in any danger, no matter how crazy, petulant or selfishly he acts. His biggest threat would be an opponent in the Republican primary, but he doesn't have one.

There is a Democrat running against him, despite the long odds -- Todd Kolosso, a young Menomonee Falls small business owner.

We could not do worse than Sensenbrenner.