Daily Archives: January 18, 2009

Four more years

That’s all we need to delay the loonies and save the world’s economy. The world’s leading Global Warming expert (no, not Al Gore, surprisingly) says that in four years it will be too late to do anything to stop disaster. So if we hold these people off, 2013 will come and go, we’ll all still be here and we can laugh at these people and get on with life. Surely we can outlast them for such a short period.

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When bread and circuses fail to distract, jail Bush!

pelosi5Pelosi: Open to criminal investigation of Bush, aides. She’s not alone, of course:

Rep. John Conyers, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, announced Friday he wants to set up a commission to look into whether the Bush administration broke the law by taking the nation to war against Iraq and instituting aggressive anti-terror initiatives. The Michigan Democrat called for an “independent criminal probe into whether any laws were broken in connection with these activities.”

John Conyers as Chairman of the Judiciary Committee is absolutely hilarious, similar to Libya’s chairing the UN’s Human Rights Commission. This hack is best known, in fact is only known, for his unstinting introduction, year after year for 19 years, of a slavery reparations bill. You can read all about him in my book, “Greenwich Mean Time” or you can just sit back and watch the show unfold in the next few years. The reparations bill might actually pass this time and won’t that be fun?

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No wonder Walt and Monica aren’t at home

"That's about as funny as a fried horse, Monica."
“That’s about as funny as a fried horse, Monica.”

The Boys from Brazil are coming, and are they pissed.

Jan. 18 (Bloomberg) — Brazilian investors lost “tens of millions” of dollars through banks that put money into Bernard Madoff’s funds, Folha de S. Paulo reported, citing David Rosemberg, a lawyer at Orlando, Florida-based Broad and Cassel.

At least 15 individuals and financial advisers in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and other Brazilian cities contacted Rosemberg about their losses, the newspaper said. The clients invested in some Safra banks, Banco Santander SA, UBS AG and Fairfield Greenwich Group and didn’t know their money had been directed to Madoff’s funds, the newspaper said.

“Brazil, out of all the Latin American countries, was probably hardest hit,” Rosemberg said today when contacted by Bloomberg News. “Banks were putting money into Madoff without understanding Madoff’s business. There was an element of peer pressure, everyone else was doing it.”

Fairfield Greenwich Group, Walter Noel’s hedge-fund that had $7.5 billion with Madoff, was sued last week for at least the third time by investors in the U.S. over claims it failed to protect their assets. Thomas Mulligan, a New-York based spokesman for the firm, said last week that Fairfield “intends to cooperate with all regulatory procedures.”

Fairfield Greenwich spokeswoman Bianca Haegler declined to comment, Folha said.

Cat got their tongue? That may not be all.

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I like this

Courtesy of a link from InstaPundit, here’s The Boston Herald’s Michael Graham’s take on the US Air crash:

If you believe the worst about Americans, you’d expect Thursday’s crash to create a mob of greedy, selfish jerks clawing away for the first shot at an exit. Instead, passengers reported that it took just a single cry of “Women and children first!” and total strangers facing possible drowning stepped aside to let mothers and their infants pass.

And after the crash, the first responders weren’t government rescue workers, but nearby passenger ferries. One ferry worker, Cosmo Mezzina, confessed to reporters afterward that he didn’t even know what the call “man overboard” meant. But he and his co-workers headed straight to the sinking airplane.

No waiting for approval from an attorney or checking the “rope-to-rescuers” ratio in the regulations. Just Americans helping others in need.

The America we see on TV – the embezzlers, incompetents and opportunists – it’s real. So, too, are the folks who frustrate your daily life here in Boston, who cut you off on the Pike or can’t seem to do simple math at the cash register. Yes, they are a part of the American story.

But they aren’t the whole story. In fact, the same driver who cuts you off today is often the guy who would pull over tomorrow to help you out of real trouble.

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The Washing concert is going well

Looks like a huge crowd (750,000?) and everyone having a good time. My dyspeptic comments yesterday about wishing sleet to blow into Pete Seeger’s face notwithstanding, I’m glad. We need all the cheer we can get these days.

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And how’d that work out?

Iran cutting oil sales to customers per OPEC edict.

The country’s already on the verge of revolution so destroying the economy is probably no wiser than some of the government’s other bonehead moves. I like this neat summary: “Iran relies on oil for about 80 percent of its foreign income.”

And there is no domestic income. Interesting.

I wonder: is Hugo also cutting production? I mean deliberately, not just his involuntary acts of sabotage?

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Walt’s got someone to commiserate with, right across the street

Several readers have commented on the woes of another Round Hill Road resident (17 Fort Hill Lane, actually), Frederick Bourke, who, in addition to once having been half of the Greenwich builders Bourke and Matthews (bankrupt now, thanks at least in part to the firm’s bookkeeper stealing $13 million), is now scheduled to face trial in March for violating the Corrupt Foreign Practices Act by trying to bribe government officials in Azerbaijan. I know nothing of the man, but I do have fond memories of his partner in the leather purse business, Peter Dooney, who operated out of a former sail loft in Old Greenwich back in the late 60s, under the name, “The Leatherman”. Peter had hair down to his waist and made incredible leather goods, including a belt with a bull’s ring as a buckle that I wore devotedly until somehow managing to lose it (you might think there was an interesting story in how one loses his belt but in this instance, there isn’t. Lost to a move, I suspect).

In any event, Peter Dooney obviously went on to achieve his potential; who knows whether his partner Bourke did, but I do like the idea of yet another trial of yet another Greenwich resident to follow. We produce the most interesting people here.

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