I absolutely support the Ethiopian government’s law enforcement operation against the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) because the government needs to defend its citizens. Besides, the TPLF’s Special Force’s confessed surprise attack against the Ethiopian National Defense Force’s Northern Command triggered the operation. The Northern Command was based in Tigray protecting Tigrayans from the Eritrean government’s military forces for twenty years.
It is known among Ethiopians that Tigray Center for Information and Communication (TCIC) is an advocate of the TPLF’s brutal rulers’ ethnic politics – which is dangerously dividing Ethiopians along their ethnic and religion groups in order to rule and loot them. When looting and ruling them is impossible, the TPLF’s rulers’ plot has been dismantling Ethiopia.
The US Senate Resolution 97 (S.Res.97) is a foreign relations bill, which was lobbied by a paid healthcare one-man lobby company, Von Batten-Montague-York, L.C (VBMY) on behalf of TCIC.
I must admit VBMY has done a miraculous job for TCIC. To get its bill passed, for approximately $30K only, VBMN has successfully lobbied, within only 77 days, House members, Senate members, State – Dept. of (DOS), White House Office and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). The sponsors of S.Res.97 are Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.).
Since VBMY’s expertise is healthcare, I wonder whether, WHO’s Director General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recommended it for the job, on behave of the TPLF’s warlords. And also I argue it is impossible to get the bill pass by the one-man healthcare lobbying firm that doesn’t have expertise in foreign relations bills, for around $30K, in only 77 days, without behind-the-scenes influencers.
Do you believe VBMY did the job on its own to get S.Res.97 passed?
Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives and Secretary of the U.S. Senate’s public documents which are available online show VBMY has done the job, for $20,000 to $30,000, on behalf of TCIC. For further information, see the lobbying disclosure. Additional detail lobbying information is available on Propublica’s website.
VBMY also lobbed S. RES. 798
On October 12, 2020, VBMY had $30K business engagement with Oromo Legacy Leadership & Advocacy Assoc (OLLAA), related with another foreign relations bill – S. RES. 798, which has not yet passed and its lobbying contracts are expired on February 8, 2021.
I noted, to help it fulfill its contractual obligations, VBMY hired a lobby firm called DiRoma Eck & Co. LLP for $10K, on behalf of OLLAA. I haven’t figured out yet why VBMY didn’t lobby for this bill. VBMY’s gross income from this engagement was $20K = ($30K – $10K paid to DiRoma Eck & Co. LLP).
Note: S. RES. 798 is “a resolution calling on the Government of Ethiopia and the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front to cease all hostilities, protect the human rights of all Ethiopians, and pursue a peaceful resolution of the conflict in the Tigray region of Ethiopia.” For additional information, see the lobbying registration which DIROMA ECK & CO. LLP filed with the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives and Secretary of the U.S. Senate.
Isn’t amazing, Karl Von Batten, “a healthcare system and policy expert…” has passed one controversial foreign relations bill?
According to May 26, 2021 twitter post by VBMY, “Karl Von Batten is the managing partner of the firm.” To learn more about VBMY and Batten, I read the information published on VBMY’s website, which are only nine sentences made from 314 words. The sentences generally described VBMY as “A Policy Advisory and Advocacy Group”.
Though being concise is great, I have noted Batten’s team members weren’t listed on VBMY’s website, and the firm’s telephone number isn’t disclosed, which is very weird. But, there is an email address, email@example.com. Furthermore, VBMY’s website made no mention any of its team members’ educational background or professional expertise. Worst yet, most recent governmental and business consulting services the firm has worked on aren’t listed.
One of VBMY’s claims posted on its website is “we assemble a team comprised of subject matter experts and former senior officials of the U.S. government to provide our clients with evidence-based advisory services and business solutions…. internal business decisions, and process changes on a given situation or stated objective.”
There is nothing wrong with the claim VBMY made above because a firm must diversify. But so far in my carrier I haven’t met a healthcare expert who has expertise in both governmental and business system analysis. Although they have similarities, they also have significant differences.
To explain, I’m a business student who majored in accounting and who have great knowledge, expertise and undying passion for business system analysis which I have been practicing since I was 21-years-old.
If you ask me, I would tell you more power to VBMY for being an expert on both governmental and business system analysis. I would also tell you VBMY’s assertion made it sound like it is a temporary employment agency for former senior officials of the U.S. government. Moreover, VBMY’s claim made its sole owner Batten appear to be on his third or fourth human lifespan because after one acquires the necessary education every expertise he claimed to possess takes more than a decade to develop – if one is lucky enough to get opportunities to practice and to master the skills required to do a great job.
Why VBMY didn’t disclose adequate information?
It kept bugging me why VBMY didn’t disclose on its website, at least: its business telephone number, its owner’s educational background and most recent lobbying & business consulting services it has provided.
To satisfy my curiosity, I googled Karl Von Batten on the internet; surprisingly, I found out that Karl Von Batten is a doctor, or he has a PhD. And also I noted WHO’s Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and Dr. Karl Von Batten have same expertise. They both are healthcare system and policy expert advisor and government consultant, according to Columbia University’s website:
“Dr. Karl Von Batten is a healthcare system and policy expert advisor and government consultant with in-depth knowledge of healthcare policy, health intelligence, healthcare finance, health economics, and healthcare business process re-engineering. Karl works with senior government leaders and public stakeholders to (1) ascertain the effects of existing or proposed government policies, business decisions, and actions on clinical and non-clinical processes, programs, and outcomes. (2) develop strategies, policies, and business solutions to address the noted concerns and ensure that policies and non-clinical and clinical processes are compliant, efficient, cost-effective, and evidence based.”
“Karl’s research interests are focused on the effects of external and internal environmental factors on healthcare systems; his primary area of expertise is in the effects of government regulations and internal organizational policies on healthcare delivery, quality, and cost.”
The writer, LJDemissie, can be reached LJDemissie@yahoo.com
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