Fish or fowl? ‘In-between’ organizations

Living large at a quasi-public/quasi-private insurer of workers comp in Missouri. Such corporate style high-life draws outrage no matter how slim the government connection, witness Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executive compensation.  However, these executive salaries, perks, sports boxes and conferences at posh resorts are routine at private firms that issue insurance and finance mortages. Missouri audit blasts state-sponsored insurer.

NY Promises Reforms After IT Audit

Government usually can’t outbid the private sector for top-notch IT talent.  So, beyond a substantial cadre of talented altruists–the IT shop gets run by the second team.  New York State’s second team allegedly wined, dined, wheeled and dealed with select vendors, which is a no-no in government though not uncommon in business.  Government Technology, February 28, 2012.  New York Officials Promise Reforms After Scathing IT Audit.

NY + NJ = Double-Dysfunctional

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey–a ninety year old agency with two governmental parents who’ve never let go–is up to a four billion and counting cost overrun for the Freedom Tower complex rising on the World Trade Center site. The two first-term governors–New Jersey’s Christie and New York’s Coumo–want better management, but somehow overlook how political tentacles winding through the Port Authority from each state do much to gum up the works.

Fannie, Where’s My Mortgage?

Vast quantities of mortgage documentation flying every which way, from Fannie Mae to banks to successive mortgage servicers to foreclosure firms, often defying the ability of any participant to keep track, or even keep the paperwork legal. Didn’t matter.  Homeowners got double-whammied by different holders of their home loan notes.  Or collection and foreclosures moved forward with missing documentation and forged affidavits.

Million Dollar Church Lady

It seems no great challenge to embezzle from religious organizations, regardless of denomination. Where internal controls are weak, and being a pious, hard-working team player provides further insulation from scrutiny, there’s lots of latitude to concoct rip-offs, as this accounting clerk allegedly did in the offices of the Archdiocese of New York.  Just a few days later, on February 3, the Archbishop of Philadelphia apologized for the million or so a senior staff member had stolen.  New Jersey next?



Indiana Jones, Indeed!

Rabbi Youlus took to calling himself the “Jewish Indiana Jones” for uncovering and restoring Torahs from Holocaust-related sites.  Many happily contributed to Rabbi Indiana’s noble work.  Turns out the Rabbi’sTorah rescues were no less a fantasy than Raiders of the Lost Ark–only the fraud was real.