Sunday, December 26, 2010

Sunday Rant on Next Two Year, How Drug Laundering Rebuilt Our Economy

Nicholas Kristoff
Samuel Jacobs

"President Obama signed into law the repeal of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.' What does it say about us that we think gay men can handle armed combat, but can't handle marriage?" – Jay Leno
"Security officials say that al-Qaida once considered spreading poison through salad bars across the U.S. But they abandoned the plan after Sizzler beat them to it." – Jimmy Fallon

 My Christmas evening was filled watching the Dr Who Christmas Carol, followed by the cutest puppies and kitten videos culled from YouTube by Animal Planet. It was enough to let me nod off in my favorite chair before I could finish the two paragraphs I kept trying to comprehend. Basically, I was on autopilot after eating dinner, which I am beginning to accept as a function of old age, or diabetes...

Hindsight is 20-20, and the story now is how Obama took a gamble and played everyone, both conservative and liberals, by conceding to extend the Bush tax cuts, which enabled him to get at least three other major pieces of legislation passed. His approval marks jumped over 30% while his opponents dropped, and were made to look like the amateurs they really are. It will be interesting
 to be a fly on the wall during the next session of Congress. Supposedly, there is going to be a lot of squabbling over who has the most authentic interpretation of conservative beliefs between the current strain of Republicans and the newly-elected tea party candidates. Most of the debates will be over spending and economics, with dog-eared copies of badly-written Ayn Rand books serving as textbooks and Bibles... Weirdly enough, Michele Bachmann will remain as the most lucid interpreter of tea party theory, letting Rand Paul go off and ramble where his spirit takes him... With the House so occupied, Obama and Harry Reid may still pull off some sly moves to advance his agenda further, and here we're talking immigration reform, the boondoggle that every President has avoided tackling for over the past 50 years.

The White House announced that there won't be any shake-up in personnel, other than replacing people who have stated that they will retire from service, like Larry Summers. The smartest things that the Obamas plan on doing during the next couple of years, will be to do more traveling and hanging out with regular American people, outside of planned photo ops. On NBC's Meet the Press, top advisor Valerie Jarret said: "He often says that this is his biggest regret is that when he took office, because of the crisis that was presented to him, he had to spend almost every waking hour in Washington focusing very hard on finding a resolution. And what he missed sorely was the engagement with the American people," Jarrett said.

Jarrett said that just before Obama left for his Christmas vacation in Hawaii, he underscored the point, saying, "When I get back, I really want to figure out a way where I can spend more time outside of Washington, listening and learning and engaging with the American people."

"It’s really what gives him his energy and his strength. And so, we’re determined in the new year to make sure that his schedule reflects that priority," she said." Besides posting the same kind of suggestions here, I also wrote to the White House suggesting this kind of action. There must have been quite a chorus, all suggesting the same thing, and meeting the public is where Obama's charm and humanity is his greatest strength. Especially if juxtaposed with whatever grumpy thing that John McCain is doing at the same time...

I haven't written about Rush Limbaugh in months, he is becoming increasingly irrelevant in our current political dialogue. Glenn Beck has proven to be the court jester, time to put him out to pasture with all of the rest of the demon sheep... I'm feeling more relaxed about the coming year, and as long as we don't get sucked into another war in the Ivory coast or North Korea, it should be a productive time. Spending time in the islands can do that...

Double-click on image to enlarge

Instructive to what helped cause our economic meltdown a couple of years ago, especially if you believe that mortgage-failure myth, is to read up on what happened to Russia once the Berlin Wall came tumbling down. Suddenly, everyone and their second cousin wanted to find ways to strip out all of the money from the Russian banks and vaults, in a feeding frenzy during its "transition" to capitalism. Overnight, over 40% of the population became penniless, many died during the winters, though you never heard of it. Before this, as Daniel Estulin writes, you had plots to destabilize and destroy the Russian economy, where "western intelligence services worked with black market profiteers, leading banking houses, the Italian Costa Nostra, the American Mafia and the Russian Thieves' World, former KGB officers, and unemployed military officers" all working together on audacious and insane intrigues. It's no wonder that Boris Yeltsin devolved into a depressed alcoholic, while mafiyas and CIA's were shoveling money into vans and driving them out of the country in conga lines...

The simplest scams involved the largest amount of money. Robert Friedman explained how it works in a 1996 issue of the New Yorker: "Russian assets, such as oil, are stolen by underworld figures or corrupt plant managers and sold on the spot market in Rotterdam. The proceed are wired through front companies on the Continent and deposited in London banks. Gangsters place an order for, say, $40 million in US currency through a bank in Moscow. The bank wires their bank of choice, placing a purchase order for the cash. The bank of choice buys the currency from the New York Federal Reserve. Simultaneously, bank of choice receives a wire transfer for the same account from the London bank. Bank of choice pockets a commission and flies the cash from New York to Moscow. It is then used by mobsters to buy narcotics or villas, or run political campaigns.

A Wall Street brokerage or investment bank may also go "offshore" in order to legally borrow once-laundered drug money to finance a corporate merger or leveraged buyout. Why do this? If you were a major investment banker or securities firm and could arrange to borrow laundered drug money at say, five percent rather than the ten your bank wants, and you are in a cutthroat competition to buy a company, would you be willing to lower your cost of capital in this way? It is hardly surprising that practices like this are becoming business as usual..."

This is essentially how the Mexican drug cartels are getting their money out of the US, when you read about them tapping into and stealing barrels of oil from Pemex... So now we know how Goldman Sachs and other big boys were able to bounce back and make profits so fast, they used laundered drug money as their base. With varied results, like a Russian businessman buying the New Jersey Nets basketball team... And now the destabilization process is happening in Ireland, Greece, with Spain and Portugal as the next victims... It's estimated that about 40% of the world's economy is based on the sales of illegal drugs. If we were to eradicate all of these drugs overnight, everything would collapse, including all of your major banks in Europe and the United States...

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hi! Thanks for commenting. I always try to respond...