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This is soooo unsurprising: Wathdog David Jensen, author of the stellar California Stem Cell Report blog, discloses that California Institute of Regenerative Medicine has doled over a billion of Californians’ borrowed money to recipients affiated with its directors.  From, “Stem Cell Cash Mostly Aids Directors’ Interests:”

With its latest round of awards earlier this month, California’s stem cell agency has now handed out $1.5 billion to enterprises linked to its directors. The figure amounts to 92 percent of the $1.7 billion awarded by the agency. The grants and loans range from $261 million to Stanford University, whose medical school dean, Philip Pizzo, sits on the agency’s governing board, to $170,500 to Children’s Hospital in Oakland, whose president, Bert Lubin, also is a member of the board. The University of California, Davis, has received $128 million. Claire Pomeroy, chief executive officer of UC Davis Health System, is another one of the 29 board members. In all, 27 institutions with past or present representatives on the agency board have received funding. None of this is illegal. And none of it is likely to change.

I scratch your back, you scratch mine.  Legal, perhaps. But that’s what happens when you control what amounts to a slush fund taken from the empty wallets of other people

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