The surprising gem in an Inquirer piece was that APCO VP Bill Pierce agreed with me. He acknowledged that interest-funded pressure groups "are all over the place" in Washington. "That's how everybody exists here," Pierce said.
Apparently, the "health care industry's biggest trade groups" are "uncharacteristically neutral on the Republican effort to repeal the health care reform law"! Neutral? Surely we are straining the definition of that word.
Current lobbist reporting requirements are like looking at a closed-circuit tape of activities inside a bank only once, every quarter. We find out what happened, but long after the money has been stolen.
Vikram Pandit heads Citigroup, one of the world's largest and most powerful banks. He's a smart individual -- why then does he advance such obviously specious arguments? The answer is straightforward: he can get away with it.