As this website exclusively reported last week, former S.C. Senate staffer Michael Hitchcock was indeed hired this week as the new executive director of the state’s multi-billion dollar pension fund.

The position was not opened to the public.  It was not advertised.  No other names were presented to the members of the board for consideration.

Badda boom, badda bing …

Hitchcock’s starting salary is $230,000 – not counting bonuses or benefits.  He has no financial background, yet this government lawyer will now be in charge of the state’s $29 billion investment fund.

What could possible go wrong, right?

Voting against Hitchcock’s appointment? S.C. Treasurer (and investment panel watchdog) Curtis Loftis and Allen Gillespie, the appointee of S.C. House Ways and Means committee chairman Brian White.

Voting for Hitchcock?  S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley‘s appointee Ed Giobbe, Senate president Hugh Leatherman‘s appointee Reynolds Williams and S.C. Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom‘s appointee  Rebecca Gunnlaugsson.

All three are “Republicans.”

Frankly, opponents of Eckstrom and Haley ought to be calling out this sort of cronyism.   Seriously … this fund pays out the highest fees in the country – yet produces some of the nation’s lowest returns.  It’s also corrupt as hell.  Yet we let its leaders secretly select a manager with no experience and pay him a quarter of a million dollars a year?

Sheesh …