who will be next World Bank President What will they do


Delay requested: some tips for Wolfowitz's lawyer. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson Jr. seems to have endorsed the request by Paul Wolfowitz, the World Bank president, for more time to defend himself against charges of misconduct, seeking a delay that could also give the Bush administration time to negotiate his voluntary resignation. This according to the International Herald Tribune.

Is Richard Bennett behind this? What should Wolfowitz's lawyer do next?

While a fellow blogger said yesterday that Wolfowitz lawyer Richard Bennett is a bit subdued these days, I noticed that his Alice in Wonderland metaphor is still getting play in the media. The Wall Street Journal recycled his Red Queen mention – without context, probably baffling many readers. This was the Bennett soundbite of a couple of weeks ago, which I parodied at the time. Now that the situation has taken a turn for the worse for Bennett and his client, I felt it would be only charitable to suggest some other motifs for Wolfowitz’s defence.

1. "The World Bank board is attempting a pre-emptive strike."

2. "The process amounts to a quick and dirty decapitation strategy."

3. "We need to take this problem to the United Nations."

4. "These annoying leaks on the board committee report contents are just weapons of mass distraction".

5. "Removing Wolfowitz might provoke civil war in the Bank".

By the way, despite repeated requests on this blog, there is still no clarity on who is paying Mr Bennett's billable hours. So I don't know whose money I'm saving with the above advice.

Getting back to Paulson. I’m all for due process being followed. But am sure that it’s not just we bloggers who want to get this done and dusted so we can get back to thinking about the real issues in development, rather than this farce.

Alex Wilks ~ May 09, 2007


GET REAL, Mr. Bennett -- are you and your associates poorly paid and overworked "PUBLIC DEFENDERS"?

Since April 5 when the Board announced it would acquire and review all information concerning possible staff rules violation, Mr. Wolfowitz has enjoyed "due process" and the benefit of the doubt.

Just for the sake of the argument, if Mr. W. and his attorney were permitted to count the day Mr. Bennett was retained (i.e., April 21) as the start of due process, that sums up to sixteen, yes, 16 days!

Is Mr. Bennett now admitting he and his associates are unable to put together a response to the ad hoc committee report in a day and a half? Is there a competence problem here?

I myself have had to turn around a response on a complex legal matter related to donor assistance overnight. I did not dare to ask my manager for an extension of the deadline and I completed the task. And guess what -- I'm not a lawyer. I'm just a run-of-the-mill educated and dedicated staff member who works for the Bank without the benefits of patronage like those bestowed on Ms. Riza.

Mr. Bennett, on the other hand, is reputed to be one of the best attorneys in Washington, the capital of the world's sole superpower. Are he and his associates now claiming to be overworked & underpaid "PUBLIC DEFENDERS"?

Please get real, Mr. Bennett. The longer the circus that you have instigated languishes, the more money you and your associates will make!

We may even start to lament how Mr. Wolfowitz will have to use his entire severance to pay for Mr. Bennett and his associates PR, er legal, services.

Female Bank staffer ashamed for Riza ~ May 09, 2007, 08:24 PM

Bennett likes Alice? They need another 5 nights to prepare the defence?

"Five nights are warmer than one night, then?" Alice ventured to ask.
"Five times as warm, of course."
"But they should also be five times as cold, by the same rule - "
"Just so!" cried the Red Queen. "Five times as warm, AND five times as cold - just as I'm five times as rich as you are, AND five times as clever!

Tut, tut, child!' said the Duchess. `Everything's got a moral, if only you can find it.' And she squeezed herself up closer to Alice's side as she spoke.
`I quite agree with you,' said the Duchess; `and the moral of that is--Be what you would seem to be--or if you'd like it put more simply--Never imagine yourself not to be otherwise than what it might appear to others that what you were or might have been was not otherwise than what you had been would have appeared to them to be otherwise.'

`I think I should understand that better,' Alice said very politely, `if I had it written down: but I can't quite follow it as you say it.'

Mad Hatter ~ May 09, 2007, 09:25 PM

By about this time, Messr. Bennett should realized that his client pulled a 'Bill Clinton' on him.

In other words, Wolfowitz lied to him and to the Ad Hoc Committee.

If it were a judicial proceeding, and Bennett have any sense of ethics, he would realize that his credibility has been used by PW, and he should resign as his attorney.

Mr. Bennett, be reminded that your expertise and services was unable to save Bill Clinton from being charged with perjury and fined and debarred.

It wouldn't be the first time, or the last time, that a client has lied to you.

The question is: is your reputation worth the few lousy bucks PW will pay you?

None ~ May 09, 2007, 11:24 PM

The delay might be GOOD news if the point is to end the matter fast below the public radar under some face-saving formula where the Board ends up taking no formal position.

The rather downbeat commenters above seem to have jumped over this remark in Alex's post:

" seeking a delay that could also give the Bush administration time to negotiate his voluntary resignation."

Bennet does seem to be negotiating here, not squirreling himself away writing lasst-ditch briefs.

Peter Quennell ~ May 10, 2007, 01:06 AM

None: Attorneys do not get "debarred," they get "disbarred."

Clinton was suspended by consent in Arkansas, he was not "disbarred," or banned for life from practicing law. He can thank Dick Bennet for that fact.

Calling into question an attorney's ethics, BTW, is libel per se as it casts his ability to practice law into question and doubt. Just thought you should know, because in publishing an opinion in this regard, the owner of this web site makes himself a party in "publishing" such an opinion. I would suggest you try to understand the American legal system better, and the fact that an American attorney has the obligation at law to represent his client zealously in an adversarial system. I am quite certain Mr. Bennett is not disturbed by your suggestion that he violate his real oath for the benefit of those who do not like Mr. Wolfowitz.

DC Worker ~ May 10, 2007, 02:22 AM

What did the president know and when did he know it?

The answer to that question forced the resignation of Richard Nixon as he was about to be impeached.

The answer to that question is in the papers that Mr. Wolfowitz and his team are reviewing.
There are no tapes, but there maybe some coverup "secret" memos.
We now all wait patienly for the official leaks.

What did the President Know ~ May 10, 2007, 04:51 AM

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