The California Public Employees’ Retirement System, referred to as “Calpers“, is America’s largest pension fund. Calpers recently revealed that a former board member obtained $50 million in fees from it for arranging investments that ultimately went south. The matter smells like “Pay to Play” where insiders take advantage of their positions to raid the public coffers.
Pay to Play occurs too often in American politics. In the Calpers matter, the former board member Al Villalobos, made his connections by working as a consultant for then Governor Ronald Reagan, was a large donor to the Nixon administration, and helped raise money for then Governor Pete Wilson. His Republican connections have done well for Mr. Villalobos, but was not so good for Calpers who purchased the bad investments. Read the rest of this entry »