World View: Israeli Delegation Goes to Cairo for Peace Talks
This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com
- Farcical MF Global decision excuses Jon Corzine and employees from guilt
- The Metastasis of Corruption
- Israel fires artillery into Syria for the third time
- Israeli delegation goes to Cairo for peace talks
Farcical MF Global decision excuses Jon Corzine and employees from guilt
In November 2011, the hedge fund firm MF Global went bankrupt. The
company had intermingled customer funds with company funds, when the
two were supposed to be segregated. As a result, $1.6 billion in
customer funds were missing. Those investors who had simply trusted
MF Global to hold their money safely lost their money.
The company's chairman and CEO was Jon Corzine, former Democratic
party U.S. senator and Democratic governor of New Jersey and one-time
chairman of Goldman Sachs. When Corzine was asked by a congressional
committee where the money was, he said that he had no idea which of
his subordinates was responsible for losing it. "I simply do not know
where the money is," he said, adding that he was "stunned" to learn it
Well, since Corzine is a Democrat, the Obama administration and Eric
Holder's Justice Department refused to investigate. This is because
the Obama administration accepts millions of dollars in political
contributions, and would much rather let these mega-criminals go free
than do something that would protect American citizens from crooks.
And so, the Republicans in the House of Representatives decided to
investigate, in the Financial Services Committee. But we have to
remember that the Republicans ALSO receive fat contributions from
financial mega-criminals, so they don't want really want to
investigate either, but the political pressure was so great that they
had to do an investigation.
The full committee report was published on Thursday. Here's the major
conclusion, on page 78 of the report:
"As MF Global’s chief executive, Corzine was
responsible for ensuring that the company maintained integrated
systems and controls for managing the company’s liquidity and
protecting customer funds. However, under Corzine’s tenure, the
company’s cash management, liquidity monitoring, and regulatory
compliance functions remained fragmented among several of the
company’s departments. MF Global lacked any formal liquidity
management framework, and the company could not fully assess and
anticipate its liquidity needs. Under Corzine’s leadership, the
company failed to address concerns raised in an internal audit
suggesting that MF Global’s liquidity tracking and forecasting
capabilities lagged behind the firm’s evolving business needs.
Consequently, MF Global was unable to coordinate its activities
during the liquidity crisis in its final days of operation. As the
company struggled to find additional liquidity, company employees
identified excess company funds held in customer accounts.
However, because they did not have an accurate accounting of the
amount of customer funds the company held, they withdrew customer
funds as well as company funds. Prosecutors and MF Global’s
regulators will determine whether the company or its employees
violated laws or regulations when these withdrawals were
made. However, the responsibility for failing to maintain the
systems and controls necessary to protect customer funds rests
with Corzine. This failure represented a dereliction of his duty
as MF Global’s Chairman and CEO."
Please note the following:
This is a farcical piece of crap, but it's typical of Washington and
Wall Street these days. But if you think that there's no more to the
farce, then you're wrong.
- Corzine wasn't really at fault, because he didn't understand
what was going on.
- The people who worked for Corzine aren't at fault, because Corzine
didn't understand what was going on.
The piece of crap was prepared by the staff of Republican Randy
Neugebauer, who is chairman of the committee.
But get this: Even though the report barely assigns any blame to
Corzine, the Democratic co-chair of the committee, Michael E. Capuano,
refused to sign off on the report. I assume that Capuano is in bed
with Corzine or, if not, a lot of other Democratic financial types.
Washington Post and House Financial Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations
The Metastasis of Corruption
As I've been pointing out for years, there has not been a single
conviction from the financial crisis, even though the evidence is
overwhelming that investment banks purposely and knowingly created
trillions of dollars in fraudulent subprime-mortgage backed synthetic
securities, and then purposely and knowingly defrauded thousands of
investors. (See my April, 2010, article "Financial Crisis Inquiry hearings provide 'smoking gun' evidence of widespread criminal fraud.")
And yet, the Obama administration adamantly refuses to prosecute these
criminals, because they helped get Obama reelected with huge campaign
(It would have been very interesting to see whether a Romney Justice
Department would have acted any differently, but I guess we'll never
The way that the fraud was committed is now well known. Gen-Xers
poured out of business schools in the 1990s with Masters degrees in
"financial engineering," which gave them the skills to create this
fraud. After the Nasdaq crash in 2000, many of them lost money and
they blamed it on the hated Boomers. They went into financial
institutions with the intent to get even, and they did. They
committed these crimes under the noses of their Boomer bosses, just as
Corzine's employees did at MF Global.
As I've also said for years, since crimes aren't being prosecuted, the
same people are in the same jobs, finding new ways to commit fraud.
Today we have huge sums of money pouring out of the Fed or the
European Central Bank into the hands of the same banks that caused the
financial crisis in the first place. They no longer have to be subtle
about committing fraud, since the central banks are now just letting
them defraud the taxpayers legally.
This is a new phenomenon. Whereas the fraud began in a specific way,
with Gen-Xers purposely defrauding Boomers, the fraud has metastisized
so that everyone in Washington and Brussels and on Wall Street are now
part of it. Those huge sums of money are flowing into the coffers of
politicians and into the multi-million dollar bonuses of banksters and
into big contracts with favored companies like Solyndra and General
Electric, but almost none of it is flowing into the hands of ordinary
people or small businessmen. And don't get me started (again) on the
catastrophic financial corruption in things like climate change and
Hannah Arendt, in her 1949 book "Origins of Totalitarianism,"
described a similar phenomenon in Germany in the lead-up to the
Holocaust. She described Bertolt Brecht's famous play The
Three-Penny Opera as presenting "gangsters as respectable
businessmen and respectable businessmen as gangsters." I will at some
later date quote a lot more from Arendt's book to show how 1930s
Germany was similar to America today, but for now I simply want to
make Arendt's point that it was massive financial corruption that
preceded the Holocaust.
I've written about the comparion between today and 1930s Germany many
times. In the 1930s, the younger Lost Generation hated the previous
Missionary Generation just as much as today's younger Gen-Xers hate
the previous Boomer Generation. (See "The Legacy of World War I and the Holocaust") The
attitudes and behaviors of today's Gen-Xers are the same as the
attitudes and behaviors of 1930s Lost Generation Germans.
Ordinary Lost Generation Germans blamed Jews for Germany's humiliation
in the Great War, and for Germany's financial problems. In 1934, the
German government passed only fairly simple discriminatory laws
against the Jews. This corresponds to the actions of "financial
engineers" in the 2004-2007 time period.
However, these simple laws metastasized into greater and greater
discrimination, with a turning point being reached with Kristallnacht
in 1938, where Nazi gangs destroyed Jewish property across the
country, with "fashionably dressed women clapping their hands and
screaming with glee, while respectable middle-class mothers held up
their babies to see the 'fun.'" After that, Lost Generation criminals
were fully in charge of Germany's government. By 1942, the criminal
activity had metastasized completely in the concentration camps and
Today we're seeing same metastasis in Washington and Wall Street, as
Gen-X criminality spreads to everyone, Gen-Xers and Boomers alike.
I've had dozens of conversations with Gen-Xers in the last few years
as they twist themselves into pretzels giving me tortured explanations
why the Obama administration should not investigate and prosecute
financial engineers who engineered the financial crisis. I've seen
several of them act just as gleefully as the fashionable women of
Berlin did in seeing Jewish property destroyed. "They were victims of
their Boomer bosses," is the moronic argument I always hear, just as
German war criminals justified their actions in exactly the same way
after the war.
Interestingly, what I've heard at least a dozen times is: "I'm not
opposed to people going to jail. For example, I'd like to see Jon
Corzine go to jail." However, they never mention Corzine's employees
going to jail as well.
Well, isn't that hilarious. The Republicans investigated Corzine for
a year, and came to the farcical conclusion last week that Corzine was
guilty of nothing more than innocent confusion, as were his employees.
So you can see why the Gen-X argument I just quoted really is truly
The 1930s Holocaust was not just caused by the few Germans who ran the
trains and the concentration camps, in cooperation with the mainstream
media. It was caused by millions of German businessmen and
politicians who refused to acknowledge that crimes were being
committed, or to do anything about them. Today's Gen-Xers have
exactly the same attitudes and behaviors as ordinary 1930s Germans.
I would like to send a message to President Barack Obama, to AG Eric
Holder, to Republican Randy Neugebauer, to Democrat Michael
E. Capuano, and to all the other Gen-Xers and Boomers who refuse to
acknowledge criminality because they benefit from it:
You are the Rudolph Hess, the Hermann Göring, the Ernst Kaltenbrunner,
the Albert Speer of today.
If you've ever wondered how the Holocaust was even possible, then you
should know that if you had lived in the 1930s rather than today, then
you would would have been the ones sending Jews to their deaths in
concentration camps. You have the same attitudes and behaviors as
those men did in the 1930s, and you are just as much criminals as they
were. If you've ever stopped to wonder how the Holocaust could have
happened, now you know.
Israel fires artillery into Syria for the third time
Syria's conflict may be "last week's war," but the Gaza conflict
hasn't affected it, except to remove it from the front pages. On
Sunday, Israel shelled Syrian fighters in Syria, after soldiers in
Syria fired gunshots into the Golan Heights. According to the Israeli
military, the Israelis scored a hit, though they don't know whether
the hit was on supporters of Bashar al-Assad or the opposition.
Israeli delegation goes to Cairo for peace talks
Negotiators from Israel and Hamas are arriving in Cairo Egypt to begin
peace talks to end the Gaza war. Sunday was the deadliest day of the
war for Gaza, but so far there's no sign that an Israeli ground
invasion is imminent.
Israel's objectives in the war are to destroy as much of Hamas's missile
launching capability as possible. Israel's objectives in the peace talks
are to get guarantees that there will be no more rocket attacks.
Hamas's objectives in the war and in the peace talks are to loosen the
blockade around Gaza, and to permanently open the crossing into Egypt, so
that goods and people can flow back and forth unhindered.
Israel will disagree with Hamas's objectives, saying that they will permit
Hamas to import a new supply of rockets and other weapons to be used
Hamas will not be capable of guaranteeing that there will be no more
rocket attacks, since Hamas is unable to control Islamic Jihad and
other Shia militant groups. As I've pointed out in the past, the
average age of the people in Gaza is 17 (contrasted to 37 for the
United States), meaning that Gaza is a region made up of little
children running around with guns and missiles. AP
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