Sunday, June 1, 2014

Scott Brown: How the Money Speaks

Mr. Brown's Company: There's no light on upstairs. 

How does a Cosmopolitan sexiest-man-alive cash in on fame? Well, it helps to have a truck.
Once you have a truck, you can win a Senate seat, especially if you are running against Martha Coakley.
And once you have been a Republican U.S. Senator from a New England state, you can attract money from the Koch brothers and friends of Carl Rove. You can use that money to run for U.S. Senate from New Hampshire, or you can simply keep the money and buy a much bigger house in Rye.
But who actually gives you the money and how is that money cleansed of taint?

Well, you can be named to the board of directors of a start up company, Global Digital Solutions, Inc.,  which once made hair spray and shampoo. 
You can see right away why'd they would want advice from Scott Brown. 
(I bet you thought of a data or software company when you heard that "Digital" part of the name, but obviously that had to do with fingers running through scalps and hair follicles...)until the company, which owns no patents or manufacturing facilities, re imagined itself as a data company, and then, most recently a firearms manufacturer. 

Guns! That should play well in New Hampshire. (Did you know in New Hampshire there are only 6 roads you cannot shoot across, if you are hunting on one side of the road and you see a moose on the other side?  One of them is Route 95, another is and Route 101 is another, and Rte. 93.  I forget the others, but, for the most part, if you have a gun and you see a moose standing on the other side of the road, go for it. New Hampshire has got your back. You can hunt in the "Urban Forest" in Portsmouth, by Route 1, as long as you fire your gun more than 100 yards from the road. Think about that next time you drive past the McDonald's, across the street, on your way into town.)

GDSI "does not have significant operations at the point, " Mr. Brown's mouthpiece said this weekend.  In fact, the company has only 4 employees, $270 thousand in cash and nearly $20 million in losses. It does have a "virtual address" in a very fancy building in Florida, but there is no GDSI listed in the lobby directory and a secretary at the address listed on the website says, "They're not here. It's by appointment only." Which leaves the matter in doubt. You can make an appointment, but they are not at home. 
     I read about this once, in Catch-22, where you could make an appointment to see Major Major Major, but only for times when he was not in the office.
    Not to worry, this company which has lost $20 million dollars,  gave Scott Brown $1.3 million worth of its stock when he agreed to become an "adviser" or a member of its board of directors. 
    Ah, a board of directors, the place where money from sources like, say, the Koch brothers, can be funneled to worthy citizens who have advice to give about hair spray or firearms.
    Remember that final scene in Animal Farm, where the animals, who have fomented a revolution and suffered through the iterations of a more just society on the farm look through the window at the pigs feasting with the human beings and they look from face to face and they cannot tell the pigs from the people?
    Well, that's where we are with Mr. Brown, now. He was once a man of the people, having been sexually abused by a camp counselor, arrested for shop lifting, shuffled back and forth among a slew of step fathers and broken homes, but somehow going to law school, joining the National Guard and serving heroically for 10 days in Afghanistan, and now he is risen from that Cinderella childhood in pursuit of the great American dream,  to a position of leadership, sitting on the boards of fancy companies like GDSI, and when he sits on a board of directors,  you can look from Koch brother to Koch brother, from Senator to business scion, and not be able to tell one from another.

And what about this phantom, this Parallax View company, which has a virtual address and website and a board of directors but no physical office, no products and only the vaguest description of a business plan?
When reached for comment, Mr. Brown said only, "I have a truck. A very big truck."

And a gun rack, too. 


  1. Why Mad Dog what other qualifications would one possibly need to serve on a board of directors and in the Senate than a fine head of hair and a truck with a gun rack?

  2. Maud,

    I knew there must be a reason I have never been asked! I have neither. Tough luck for Mad Dog.

    Mad Dog