David Whelan is the new senior vice president and chief scientist of San Diego-based military contractor Cubic Corporation.
A recent move by U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to sweep hundreds of members from Pentagon advisory boards is bringing new attention to one of the newly departed: David Whelan, senior vice president and chief scientist of San Diego-based military contractor Cubic Corporation. According to an official membership roster, Whelan, previously set to serve until 2022, was appointed to the Defense Science Board in January 2014 under Democrat Barack Obama. “I’m a dot connector,” said Whelan, a UC San Diego alumnus and ex-chief scientist at Boeing, another defense giant, to the Union-Tribune in October 2017. Per the January 31 order from Austin, members of the Defense Science Board, like the others, must be gone “no later than February 16, 2021.” The action is widely seen as part of a purge of Donald Trump’s Pentagon appointees by the Biden Administration.
Noted dot connector, David Whelan
Appointed to the Cubic positions in October of last year, Whelan gave $576 to the Cubic Corporation Employees’ Political Action Committee on December 24, for a total of $769 through January 1. When he was chief scientist for Boeing Integrated Defense Systems, Whelan ignited controversy by his membership on a panel advocating so-called geo-engineering, a process of combating climate change with high-tech intervention. “We prefer the term ‘climate remediation’, which describes technologies that are intentionally designed to counteract the greenhouse gas emissions to the atmosphere,” said the introduction to a 2010 report of a think tank task force Whelan served on. Concluded the Guardian in an October 2011 opinion post: “Notable among the group is David Whelan, a man who spent years in the US defense department working on the stealth bomber and nuclear weapons and who now leads a group of people as Boeing’s chief scientist working on ‘ways to find new solutions to world’s most challenging problems.’ In sum, this coalition of US expertise is a group of people which smell vast potential future profits for their institutions and companies in geo-engineering.”
Audit oversight threatened
Newly selected San Diego City Auditor Andy Hanau is warning that cuts proposed for his office being weighed by new Democratic mayor Todd Gloria may jeopardize the already shaky integrity of city government. “The administration has indicated a target budget reduction for the Office of the City Auditor that is approximately 8 percent (approximately $312,000) of our total overall budget,” says a January 14 by Hanau to the City’s Audit Committee. “If the Audit Committee approved this reduction, it would have a significant negative impact on our operations. It would result in either reduced staff levels or furloughing staff, which would greatly diminish our productivity.”
Noted memo writer, Andy Hanau
Hanau’s memo adds that prior cuts are already squeezing audit funding. “In previous years, the administration has requested a 3.5 percent budget reduction, and at the direction of the Audit Committee, we submitted a 3 percent reduction for our FY2018 budget, which totaled $110,191.” Concludes Hanau, “While we recognize that the City’s budget will be highly impacted next year, furloughing and laying off City Auditor staff will limit our ability to identify City cost savings, revenues, and efficiencies at a time when they are most critically needed.... Due to the City’s projected budget deficit, we are not requesting any new audit positions or new budgetary additions for our FY2022 proposed budget. Instead, we request that the Audit Committee recommend that our FY2022 budget remains intact with no cuts except for the 2.6 percent ($19,325) reduction in our contracts budget from the approved FY2021 budget. Any further budget reductions for the City Auditor’s FY2022 budget would have a significant negative impact on OCA operations.”
Doctors of politics
Russian-born singer Alya Michelson, wife of Los Angeles billionaire orthopedic spinal surgeon Gary Michelson, has come up with $7800 for Assembly Democrat Lorena Gonzalez’s run for Secretary of State. Mr. Michelson did the same. America’s Physicians Groups California Political Action Committee gave $15,600, Anesthesia Service Medical Group’s PAC kicked in $5000, and Blue Shield of California gave $15,600.
Gonzalez’s game plan for advancement has been shaken up by the appointment by Democratic governor Gavin Newsom of Assembly Democrat Shirley Weber to fill the Secretary of State vacancy created by Newsom’s selection of incumbent Alex Padilla to replace Vice President Kamala Harris in the U.S. Senate. “I feel very strongly about voting rights, which is why I was running for Secretary of State,” Gonzalez said in a statement. “While I would’ve loved the opportunity to serve in that role, I fully appreciate the need to amplify Black women in our state. Shirley Weber is an icon and will serve California well as Secretary of State.”
— Matt Potter (@sdmattpotter)
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