Conservative Liberal

FDR would have been a Republican today.

Soviet satire and Obama Administration

When I was growing up in the Soviet Union, among the most popular satire authors were the duo of Ilf and Petrov.  They were long gone by the time I was growing up: Ilf died of tuberculosis in 1937, and Petrov was killed in a plane crash during World War 2.  Still, their humor and ability to laugh at the Soviet reality of 1920s – 1930s ensured their continuing popularity.  They were especially popular in my native city of Odessa, because that’s where they were from.  Their 2 main novels are The Twelve Chairs and its sequel, The Golden Calf.  The 1st of the 2, The Twelve Chairs, even was made into a Mel Brooks movie.  The main character of the novels, Ostap Bender, is basically a small-time con artist trying to get rich in the early Soviet Union during the time of New Economic Policy, when some elements of free enterprise were allowed.  Upon getting reach, Bender dreams of escaping the Soviet Union to Rio-de-Janeiro, where, he is sure, "everybody wears white pants".  In the 2nd novel, The Golden Calf, Bender and his cohorts set their sights on Aleksandr Koreiko, an "underground millionaire".  Koreiko was "underground" because there were no legal millionaires in the Soviet Union.  He made his millions by cleverly defrauding the Soviet Government.  For example, in one instance Koreiko set up a chemical factory.  This chemical factory never produced anything.  The whole production process amounted to transferring water from one barrel to another.  The source of income for this factory and personally for Mr. Koreiko were government grants and loans.  Right before discovery Koreiko managed to disappear with the money.  Of course, Koreiko could not spend his money, because that would reveal to everybody his ill-gotten riches.  He had to stay "underground", posing as a lowly bureaucrat.  And that made him vulnerable to blackmail.  Ostap Bender conducted an extensive investigation, gathered enough evidence and succeeded in extorting a million rubles from Koreiko.

Both books are hilarious and were always a part of the culture in the Soviet Union, often quoted by people in regular conversations.  But someone might ask: "What does it have to do with Obama Administration?"  Well, a couple of days ago I caught a glimpse of Glenn Beck’s program in which he mentioned a company by the name of Molten Metal Technology Inc. and one of its officers named Maurice Strong.  Beck said that the company’s source of income were US Government grants, and that Strong and some other company leaders sold their stock, making millions, right before our Government stopped paying, and the company went belly up.  I immediately thought: "Wait a minute, I remember that story".  Indeed, that is exactly the episode out of one of my favorite books, the one I described above.  I looked it up.  Here is one article on the subject:

…The tawdry tale of the top two global warming gurus in the business world goes all the way back to Earth Day, April 17, 1995 when the future author of “An Inconvenient Truth” travelled to Fall River, Massachusetts, to deliver a green sermon at the headquarters of Molten Metal Technology Inc. (MMTI). MMTI was a firm that proclaimed to have invented a process for recycling metals from waste. Gore praised the Molten Metal firm as a pioneer in the kind of innovative technology that can save the environment, and make money for investors at the same time.

“Gore left a few facts out of his speech that day,” wrote EIR. “First, the firm was run by Strong and a group of Gore intimates, including Peter Knight, the firm’s registered lobbyist, and Gore’s former top Senate aide.”

(Fast-forward to the present day and ask yourself why it is that every time someone picks up another Senate rock, another serpent comes slithering out).

“Second, the company had received more than $25 million in U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) research and development grants, but had failed to prove that the technology worked on a commercial scale. The company would go on to receive another $8 million in federal taxpayers’ cash, at that point, its only source of revenue (emphasis mine – Eric-Odessit).

“With Al Gore’s Earth Day as a Wall Street calling card, Molten Metal’s stock value soared to $35 a share, a range it maintained through October 1996. But along the way, DOE scientists had balked at further funding. When in March 1996, corporate officers concluded that the federal cash cow was about to run dry, they took action: Between that date and October 1996, seven corporate officers—including Maurice strong—sold off $15.3 million in personal shares in the company, at top market value. On Oct. 20, 1996—a Sunday—the company issued a press release, announcing for the first time, that DOE funding would be vastly scaled back, and reported the bad news on a conference call with stockbrokers (emphasis mine – Eric-Odessit).

“On Monday, the stock plunged by 49%, soon landing at $5 a share. By early 1997, furious stockholders had filed a class action suit against the company and its directors. Ironically, one of the class action lawyers had tangled with Maurice strong in another insider trading case, involving a Swiss company called AZL Resources, chaired by Strong, who was also a lead shareholder. The AZL case closely mirrored Molten Metal, and in the end, Strong and the other AZL partners agreed to pay $5 million to dodge a jury verdict, when eyewitness evidence surfaced of Strong’s role in scamming the value of the company stock up into the stratosphere, before selling it off.

The article ties Mr. Strong to Obama.  Read it all.  But isn’t it ironic, how life imitates one of my favorite childhood books.  Here is another article, this one about how Al Gore and the above-mentioned Maurice Strong making money off the carbon credits.  Indeed, Gore made millions off this scheme.  Al Gore, Maurice Strong and other Global Warming gurus are nothing more that scam artists, just like Aleksandr Koreiko, the fictitious character from the old Russian novel.  Do you think there might be an Ostap Bender who might take time to investigate and expose the bastards?

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May 16, 2010 - Posted by | Articles

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