Home » Globalization

Category: World Bank

The Truth Buried Alive

Greg Palast 

Of the thousands of bless you and f**** you messages that arrived at The Guardian papers after we broke the Florida vote swindle story in November 2000, none ruffled my editors' English reserve but one: a letter demanding we ...more

Naughty Nuns, Bad Bankers
and Ballot Bandits

Greg Palast 

for Truthout

On May 6, 2008, twelve fraudulent voters, dressed as nuns, attempted to cast ballots in the Presidential Primary in Indiana.

Luckily, ten of them were caught, stopped cold by Indiana’s new voter photo ID law.  The law had been found to be constitutional by Federal Judge Richard Posner of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.

It turns out the nuns that Posner’s ruling turned away were, in fact ”¦nuns.  All the sisters had photo drivers licenses, but they had expired (the licenses, not the nuns).  The Sisters of the Holy Cross, had, mercifully, given up driving (they were pushing 90 years of age.)

It was a cute story that ran nationwide.  What wasn’t so cute, and ran nowhere in the US press, was that 72,000 Black voterswere blocked at the polls by this Posner-blessed photo ID law.

It was Posner’s decision that first allowed …more

Larry Summers: Goldman Sacked

Greg Palast 

for Reader Supported News

Joseph Stiglitz couldn’t believe his ears.  Here they were in the White House, with President Bill Clinton asking the chiefs of the US Treasury for guidance on the life and death of America’s economy, when the Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Larry Summers turns to his boss, Secretary Robert Rubin, and says, “What would Goldman think of that?”

Huh?

Then, at another meeting, Summers said it again:  What would Goldman think?A shocked Stiglitz, then Chairman of the President’s Council of Economic Advisors, told me he’d turned to Summers, and asked if Summers thought it appropriate to decide US economic policy based on “what Goldman thought.”  As opposed to say, the facts, or say, the needs of the American public, you know, all that stuff that we heard in Cabinet meetings on The West Wing.

Summers looked at Stiglitz like Stiglitz was some kind of naive fool who’d read too many civics books.

 

R.I.P. Larry Summers

On Sunday afternoon, facing a revolt …more

Larry Summers
and the Secret “End-Game” Memo

Greg Palast 

for Vice Magazine

When a little birdie dropped the End Game memo through my window, its content was so explosive, so sick and plain evil, I just couldn’t believe it.

The Memo confirmed every conspiracy freak’s fantasy:  that in the late 1990s, the top US Treasury officials secretly conspired with a small cabal of banker big-shots to rip apart financial regulation across the planet.  When you see 26.3% unemployment in Spain, desperation and hunger in Greece, riots in Indonesia and Detroit in bankruptcy, go back to this End Game memo, the genesis of the blood and tears.

The Treasury official playing the bankers’ secret End Game was Larry Summers.  Today, Summers is Barack Obama’s leading choice for Chairman of the US Federal Reserve, the world’s central bank.  If the confidential memo is authentic, then Summers shouldn’t …more

Euro Krieg!
Greece Surrenders to Germany 2013
Greg Palast Interviewed by Greek Radio

Greg Palast 

By Michael Nevradakis for Truthout

In his career as an investigative journalist, economist, and bestselling author –Vultures’ Picnic, Billionaires and Ballot Bandits, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy – Greg Palast has not been afraid to tackle some of the most powerful names in politics and finance.

From uncovering Katherine Harris’ purge of African-American voters from Florida’s voter rolls in the year 2000 to revealing the truth behind the “assistance” provided by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank to ailing economies, Palast has not held back in revealing the corruption and criminal actions of the wealthy and powerful.

In a recent interview on Dialogos Radio, Palast turned his attention to Greece and to the austerity policies that have been imposed on the country by …more

My Big Fat Greek Minister

Greg Palast 

For Vice Magazine

It wasn’t too difficult picking out the Fat Bastard in the crowd of Russian models, craven moochers and media mavens. Besides, Fat Bastard and I were both desperate for coffee and heading for the same empty urn.

(We’d both signed on for Kazakhstan’s annual Eurasia Media Forum, a kind of Burning Man festival for Eastern oilgarchs and their media camp followers.)

Now, it is my policy never to mention an interlocutor’s weight, nor question the legitimacy of their birth, given my own vulnerabilities. (A would-be groupie told me, “You could do a few sit-ups, you know.” Yes, I know.)

But this particular Fat Bastard is asking for it. I had tried to put the belly of this beast out of my thoughts, but I still had a New York Times story folded in my pocket that begins:

ATHENS ”“ As an elementary school principal, Leonidas Nikas is used to seeing children play, laugh and dream about the future. But recently he has seen something altogether different, something he thought was impossible in Greece: children picking through school trash cans for food; needy youngsters asking playmates for leftovers; and an 11-year-old boy, Pantelis Petrakis, bent over with hunger pains.

Fat Bastard ”“ or Theodoros Pangalos, thinks the little Greek kiddies should …more

“Now that the SOB is Dead…”
A Novel Idea: Asking an Afghan about Afghanistan

Greg Palast 

For Vice Magazine

“Now that the sonovabitch is dead, why is the US still angry with us?”

“Us”, in this conversation, are the Taliban. The SOB in question is Osama bin Laden.

The Taliban’s frustration was relayed to me by Yahya Maroofi, Counsellor to Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai ”“ Karzai’s Kissinger, if Kissinger had a soul.

The Silk Road nation of Kazakhstan is an excellent place to encounter the dervishes of the Great Game for control of the camel-and-pipeline routes of the Central Asian steppes. Here we can witness the diplomatic-military idiocies of new empires pathetically attempting to ignore the dried skeletons of the imperial forces that went before them.

Maroofi was spending the day in Kazakhstan’s capital on his way to little-noticed peace negotiations ”“ little noticed because neither Uncle Sam nor Great-Uncle Britain were invited. Attendance is limited to those frontline states that will be left holding the grenade when the US and UK pull out the pin with the removal of their troops in 2014. The lineup includes Kazakhstan, Russia, Kyrgyzstan (birthplace of the Boston Bombers) and the big new swinging dick on the block, Turkey, as well as Iran, the nation most feared and despised by the Taliban. The unannounced guests, of course, are the Taliban themselves.

I am moved to recount a bit of my lengthy talk with the Afghan minister after reading reams of meretricious bunkum about Afghanistan from the pens of US propaganda repeaters pretending to be reporters. My favourite is, “Hope Seen for Afghanistan After Coalition Leaves,” in the New York Times. To give us an expert view, two American reporters used their 20-column inches to take down the words of General Joseph F Dunford Jr, commander of all “international forces” in Afghanistan.

Dunford just arrived in Afghanistan for the first time about 12 weeks ago. He may not know a Tajik from a camel fart, …more

Did Chavez’ Pick Steal
the Election in Venezuela?

Greg Palast 

By Greg Palast for Vice Magazine – Leer el artículo en español aquí.

The guy in the cheap brown windbreaker walking up the dirty tenement steps to my New York office looked like a bus driver.

Nicolas Maduro, elected President of Venezuela last Sunday, did indeed drive a bus, then led the drivers’ union, then drove Chávez’ laws through the National Assembly as Venezuela’s National Assembly chief.

And this week, the US State Department is refusing to accept the result, suggesting Maduro hijacked the vote count. But did he?Maduro came to me that day in 2004 on a quiet mission, sent by President Hugo Chávez to give me information I needed for my investigation for Rolling Stone ”“ and to get information from me that might save Chávez’ life.


For one more week you can download Palast’s short documentary, The Assassination of Hugo Chávez, originally filmed in Venezuela for BBC, without charge.


The central topic was the “Invisible Ring”. Venezuelan intelligence had secretly taped US Embassy contractors in Caracas talking in spook-speak: “That which took shape here is a disguised kind of intelligence… which is annexed to the third security ring, which is the invisible ring.”

(“Invisible Ring”? Someone at the State Department has read too many Alan Furst novels.)

On the grainy film, they worried that …more

How Bush won the war in Iraq – really!

Greg Palast 

For Vice Magazine

If you thought it was “Blood for Oil”–you’re wrong.  It was far, far worse.

Because it was marked “confidential” on each page, the oil industry stooge couldn’t believe the US State Department had given me a complete copy of their secret plans for the oil fields of Iraq. Actually, the State Department had done no such thing. But my line of bullshit had been so well-practiced and the set-up on my mark had so thoroughly established my fake identity, that I almost began to believe my own lies.I closed in. I said I wanted to make sure she and I were working from the same State Department draft. Could she tell me the official name, date and number of pages? She did.

Bingo! I’d just beaten the Military-Petroleum Complex in a lying contest, so I had a right to be stoked.

After phoning numbers from California to Kazakhstan …more

VAmi con Dios, Hayago Chàvez, mi ugo

Greg Palast 

For Vice Magazine

For BBC Television, Palast met several times with Hugo Chàvez, who passed away today.

As a purgative for the crappola fed to Americans about Chavez, my foundation, The Palast Investigative Fund, is offering the film, The Assassination of Hugo Chavez, as a FREE download. Based on my several meetings with Chavez, his kidnappers and his would-be assassins, filmed for BBC Television. DVDs also available.

Media may contact Palast at interviews (at) gregpalast.com.

Venezuelan President Chavez once asked me why the US elite wanted to kill him. My dear Hugo: It’s the oil. And it’s the Koch Brothers ”“ and it’s the ketchup.

Reverend Pat Robertson said,

“Hugo Chavez thinks we’re trying to assassinate him. I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it.” …more

A Hostile Takeover of our Country
Treasonous, Noxious, Thieving, Tyrannical

Greg Palast 

by Robert F. Kennedy Jr., for EcoWatch
from the foreword to
 Billionaires & Ballot Bandits

American democracy is under assault.

In one super-PAC alone, Karl Rove and the Enron grifter Ed Gillespie, have assembled $200 million from big polluters and Wall Street moguls to buy the 2012 election.

Two of the Koch Brothers, Charles and David, pledged $130 million to elect candidates who favor unrestrained corporate profiteering.

The senators and congressmen they fund and elect are not representing the United States””they are representing Koch and its oil industry cronies, Big Pharma, and the Wall Street banksters currently mounting a hostile takeover of our government.

I have no problem characterizing these corporate-centric super-PACs as treasonous.  We are now in a free fall toward old-fashioned oligarchy; noxious, thieving and tyrannical.

…more

Billionaires & Ballot Bandits

Greg Palast 

If you’re not sick and outraged and ready to vomit, then don’t talk to me.

When I see a cruel bucket of garbage and winky-winky racism and bullshit and venom like Paul Ryan talk to America like he’s some kind of Boy Scout, I want a gun, or a TV network where I can tell the truth or a giant washing machine to dunk America and rinse off the crud of lies and pure manipulative evil that they’re feeding us.

But I don’t like guns, I don’t have a TV network, I just have this:  A book.

It’s called Billionaires & Ballot Bandits:  How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps.

An investigation of Karl Rove, the Koch Gang and their billionaire Buck-Buddies. The guys who bought Ryan.

It’s the most important bullet I’ve ever fired.

I watch these smug jerks at the Republican Convention and I’m ill … because I know something they won’t tell you on CNN or CBS, let alone Fox.  And here’s the facts, ma’am:

In 2008, no fewer than 2,706,275 ballots were cast””and never counted.

It didn’t make a difference then, but it will make a difference now.

And, in 2008, no fewer than 3,195,539 legal voters were denied the right to vote.   Told to get the hell out of the polling station.

Add it up.  That’s at least 5,901,814 legitimate votes and voters tossed out of the count.

So God Bless America. By the way, these numbers are from the raw data supplied to me by the US Elections Assistance Commission.

It’s official. It’s in your face.  It’s sick.  It’s unreported. …more

Can we list your Group
in our Election Guide?

A Request from Greg Palast

Greg Palast 

We need you to join Operation PUSH, Rock the Vote, People for the American Way, League of United Latin American Citizens, Bobby Kennedy Jr., Thom Hartmann Show, Occupy.com and 150 other organizations.  Add your group’s name to our book, website and film, Billionaires & Ballot Bandits: How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps.

What do you do?  Just hit ‘reply‘ and say “YES, add us.”

(Please respond by Monday, July 16.)

Then we’ll send you a letter to confirm how you’d like to be listed (example: Presente.org), with your website, public contact and other info about your group you’d like to share with concerned voters.

[Yes, individual supporters can join in:  click here.]

In 2008, Bobby Kennedy and I wrote a voter protection comic book, Steal Back Your Vote. Over a quarter million copies were distributed to activists and in communities where voters are most vulnerable.

In 2012, we’re back, because they’re back:  the vote rustlers, with their caging, purging, blocking, spoiling, vote-tossing ballot banditry.

And we need your group to add its name as an ACTION RESOURCE …more

The Euro is a Big Success – No Kidding

Greg Palast 

by Greg Palast | The Guardian USA

The idea that the euro has “failed” is dangerously naive. The euro is doing exactly what its progenitor ”“ and the wealthy 1%-ers who adopted it ”“ predicted and planned for it to do.

That progenitor is former University of Chicago economist Robert Mundell. The architect of “supply-side economics” is now a professor at Columbia University, but I knew him through his connection to my Chicago professor, Milton Friedman, back before Mundell’s research on currencies and exchange rates had produced the blueprint for European monetary union and a common European currency.

Mundell, then, was more concerned with his bathroom arrangements. Professor Mundell, who has both a Nobel Prize and an ancient villa in Tuscany, told me, incensed:

“They won’t even let me have a toilet. They’ve got rules that tell me I can’t have a toilet in this room! Can you imagine?” …more

How Bain Capital helped BP
blow up the Deepwater Horizon

Greg Palast 

A Book Review by Greg Palast, for FireDogLake.com
on Poisoned Legacy: the Human Cost of BP’s Rise to Power (St. Martin’s Press) by Mike Magner.

Here’s my bead on Magner’s book….

I almost fell off the barstool when I read that it was Bain Capital (Mitt Romney, former CEO), that told oil giant BP it was a good idea to cut costs. …more

BP Cover-up
Part 2: Bribery, George Bush and WikiLeaks

Greg Palast 

by Greg Palast – Exclusive for EcoWatch.org
Friday, 20. April, 2012

Evidence now implicates top BP executives as well as its partners Chevron and Exxon and the Bush Administration in the deadly cover-up ”“ which included falsifying a report to the Securities Exchange Commission.

Yesterday, Ecowatch.org revealed that, in September 2008, nearly two years before the Deepwater Horizon explosion in the Gulf of Mexico, another BP rig had blown out in the Caspian Sea”“”“which BP concealed from U.S. regulators and Congress.

Had BP, Chevron, Exxon or the Bush State Department revealed the facts of the earlier blow-out, it is likely that the Deepwater Horizon disaster would have been prevented.

Days after the Deepwater Horizon blow-out, a message came in to our offices …more

Occupy Wall Street comes home to roost with Congo’s ‘debt vultures’

Greg Palast 

Nowhere are the ill-gotten gains of the 1% more grossly apparent than in the activities of ‘debt vulture’ hedge funds

As published by The Guardian America


This article is the subject of a legal complaint from Peter Grossman.


Photo by Zach Roberts © 2011

This past Sunday, a deputation from Occupy Wall Street crossed the bridge from Manhattan and brought its protest to the Brooklyn residence of one of New York’s “vultures” This type of vulture doesn’t roost in a tree, but in a swish brownstone.

A “vulture” is a financial speculator who, as we recently reported, gets his hands on debts owed by desperately poor nations. The Brooklyn “vulture” targeted by OWS and Friends of the Congo is Peter Grossman. Two weeks ago, the Guardian exposed him as a financier who is demanding the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the world’s poorest nation, pay $100m to the hedge fund he manages, FG Hemisphere.

Grossman, tipped off about the demonstration, …more

Goldfinger eats Congo

Greg Palast 

Amy Goodman, Democracy Now!…

“Top funders of the Republican Party have demanded that two African nations pay them over half a billion dollars…. Is one of these vulture’s claims based on a stolen security, criminally transferred to an American financier called ‘Goldfinger’? Greg Palast, author of the new book, Vultures’ Picnic, investigates for BBC Television and The Guardian.”

Greg Palast reporting from Kinshasa, Congo; Sarajevo, Bosnia; and Brooklyn, New York

If God doesn’t give a rat’s ass about The Vulture, and what he does for a living, and what he’s done for Africa, why should I?

The thought struck me while sitting here, coffee getting cold, in my old Toyota, trying to look invisible, staked out in front of 300 Dekalb Avenue. It’s just after dawn here in Brooklyn, New York, and I’m hoping that Peter Grossman, a Wall Street star, will pop out of his posh brownstone for a jog or a cup of joe. Then I can jump him. He’s on the look-out for me because I’d already jumped his crony, Goldfinger, the man who’s making Grossman stunningly rich.

Grossman’s riches, nearly $100 million for his firm, FG Management, come from the Congo. I was just there in Congo, two days before this stake-out, at a cholera quarantine center in the capital, Kinshasa.

Besides lots of cholera, Congo has lots of cobalt. Grossman has, through a crazy legal loophole in British law, waylaid a payment of $80 million to the African government for a shipment of cobalt from a government-owned mine.

Grossman is a “vulture,” the name Wall Street gives, …more