Wombaticus Rex » Sun Jul 21, 2013 4:27 pm wrote:I had long known Pete Peterson as an internationalist & high finance Archon, but the PEHI archive paints a far more esoteric picture.
Via: https://wikispooks.com/ISGP/organisatio ... on_bio.htmPeter G. Peterson
Born in 1926. MBA from University of Chicago 1951. Joined the McCann-Erickson advertising agency (now the Interpublic Group of Companies) in 1952 and was general manager of its Chicago office until 1958. Then joined the Bell & Howell Corporation. Chairman and CEO of the Bell and Howell Corporation 1963-1971. Assistant to the President for International Economic Affairs 1971-1972. Secretary of Commerce 1972-1973.
Felix Rohatyn, the Lazard Banker and follow-up of André Meyer, handled the investments of Peterson in a blind trust while Peterson was Secretary of Commerce. Became chairman of President Nixon’s National Commission on Productivity in 1972. Became U.S. Chairman of the U.S.–Soviet Commercial Commission in 1972, which negotiated comprehensive trade, Ex-Im credit, arbitration, copyright and lend-lease agreements. Chairman and CEO of Lehman Brothers 1973-1977. Director Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) 1973-1981.
Attended the first meeting of the Trilateral Commission in 1973, and continued to attend while being head of Lehman Brothers. Member of the 1976 Iran-US Business Council meeting, which was set up by Henry Kissinger and Hushang Ansary, and included David Rockefeller and Paul Volcker. Chairman and CEO of Lehman Brothers, Kuhn, Loeb 1977-1984.
Founding chairman of the Institute for International Economics (IIE), from 1981 until today. Past and present directors of the IIE have included George Shultz (Pilgrims), Paul Volcker (Pilgrims; Le Cercle), David O'Reilly (Bohemian Grove camp Mandalay), Maurice R. Greenberg, and David Rockefeller (Pilgrims; Le Cercle). Treasurer of the CFR 1981-1985. Chairman of the CFR 1985-present.
In his memoirs, David Rockefeller, the previous chairman of the CFR, wrote about Peterson on page 409: "Pete has introduced a number of innovations that have strengthened the Council. One of his initiatives, in which I participate, are periodic Council trips overseas... Our visits to Israel in 1999 and Cuba in 2000 were typical. We drove from Jerusalem to the Gaza Strip for a luncheon meeting with Yasser Arafat... a small, canny, and charming man obviously suffering from Parkinson's desease. He insisted that Israel must withdraw from the West Bank and allow its incorporation into a fully souvereign Palestinian state... Returning to Jerusalem we met Prime Minister Ehud Barak, a self-confident, assertive man who explained why Israel would never agree to Arafat's demands to return to the 1967 borders."
Peterson and Rockefeller have also organized meetings with the Chinese leadership in the United States under the George W. Bush Administration. One of two founders of The Blackstone Group in 1985, headquartered in New York. Blackstone, a leading global investment and advisory group, has a strategic partnership with Kissinger Associates (of Pilgrims Society and Le Cercle member Henry Kissinger) and AIG. AIG has an ownership interest in Blackstone.
In 2000, Henry Kissinger was quoted by Business Wire: "Hank Greenberg, Pete Peterson and I have been close friends and business associates for decades."
2001, Uri Dowbenko interview with Al Martin, 'The Man Who Knows Too Much': "They're [Blackstone] an asset of the agency [CIA]. They're not a cut-out. They're just one of the legion of financial companies, mostly domiciled in Washington or northern Virginia, which the CIA turns to, on occasion, to launder money, or for some other illegal purpose... They had been involved with their Blackstone Investment Group, and they have other partners, originally Assistant Deputy Secretary of Defense Richard Stilwell [CIA; DIA; special forces general who fought the communists worldwide; worked for J. Peter Grace and the Rockefellers in South-America; Le Cercle; named as a member of SMOM; named as a key player in the Far-East heroine trade and the European Stay-Behind networks; co-authored Operation Mongoose and Northwoods], the son of the famous General Stilwell. Stilwell himself was a retired Major General. Stilwell was also very close to Armitage [former Seal; named as a key player in the Far-East heroine trade], Carlucci [implicated in CIA-sponsored coups in Congo. Brazil, and Portugal], and Pete Peterson...The Carlyle Group, which is Frank Carlucci, and the Blackstone Investment Group are virtually one and the same. Two different names, but they are virtually the same organization. All they do is ride the crest of the waves of various frauds from country to country."
The Blackstone Group was a top Enron financial advisor. October 17, 2000, The Blackstone Group news announcement, 'Blackstone Acquires Debt on 7 World Trade Center': "Blackstone Real Estate Advisors, the global real estate investment and management arm of The Blackstone Group, L.P., announced today that it has purchased, from Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association, the participating mortgage secured by 7 World Trade Center, a commercial office complex controlled by real estate developer Larry Silverstein... We are pleased to be a lender to Larry Silverstein, a seasoned real estate veteran, on one of Manhattan’s trophy properties..."
7 World Trade Center came down on 9/11, late in the afternoon, under what many have called suspicious circumstances. Coincidentally, for some reason Silverstein later claimed he and the fire department decided to "pull" the building, after which "they watched it collapse." Many believe Silverstein literally meant "demolish."
Director of the World Trade Center Memorial Foundation, together with four former U.S. presidents, Maurice R. Greenberg, Henry R. Kravis (Bohemian Grove), David Rockefeller, Jerry I. Speyer (big Rockefeller guy), John C. Whitehead (photographed standing behind Lord Rothschild and Kissinger; likely Pilgrim), Anne M. Tatlock (gone from her WTC on the morning on 9/11), Sir John Bond (HSBC; Multinational Chairman's Group), Michael Eisner (Sun Valley Meetings), and Richard D. Parsons (Rockefeller guy; Sun Valley Meetings).
Founding president of the Concord Coalition in 1992, an "organization advocating fiscal responsibility while ensuring Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are secure for all generations." Co-Chair of the Conference Board Commission on Public Trust and Private Enterprises. Class C director of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York 1996-1998. Deputy chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York 1998-2000.
Chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York from 2000 to 2004, where he succeeded co-Pilgrims Society member John C. Whitehead. Director of Rockefeller Center Properties. Social and business friend of David Rockefeller. Director of Sony Corporation, Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company, Federated Department Stores, Black & Decker Manufacturing Company, General Foods Corporation, RCA, The Continental Group, and Cities Service.
Trustee of the Committee for Economic Development, the Japan Society and the Rockefeller's Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Director of the National Bureau of Economic Research, the Public Agenda Foundation and The Nixon Center. Financial contributor to the Asia Society.
April 21, 2005, New York Daily News, Daily Dish & Gossip, 'Lloyd Grove's Lowdown: Celeb rep snaps at his kind': "Nuff said: All you busybodies who've been ringing up financial whiz Pete Peterson to chide him for rudely walking out on former United Nations Ambassador Richard Holbrooke's talk to the posh Pilgrims Club in response to Lowdown's item the other day: Please stop it, won't you? Let's review: Peterson and Holbrooke are old friends who think it's funny to insult each other. Plus, Holbrooke's presentation was running long and Peterson had an appointment."
Peterson on NNDB
Peterson on Wikipedia
Peterson on SourceWatch
Schwarzman remarked in 2010 on the possibility of losing tax breaks that private equity fund managers receive related to "carried interest" (which are taxed at a very low 15% instead of 35%), and being forced to pay taxes at the rate of ordinary Americans: "It's war. It's like when Hitler invaded Poland in 1939."
The report charges that the Panamanian banking system, which is to say the Panamanian government itself, makes "an explicit effort ... to attract a narco-dollar flow." Because of that policy a huge amount of drug money "continues to gravitate to Panama." That country "now appears to hold most of the money earned in the cocaine trade...."
The report goes on to outline the finances of Centac targets Alberto Sicilia-Falcon, Donald Steinberg, and Gilberto "The Chessman" Rodriguez. Studying the secret whirls and eddies of multimillion-dollar sums flowing from the streets of the United States to safe harbors around the world, the report sensed "a wide underground network," and looked particularly at a single financial river carrying drug profits of Gilberto Rodriguez and his brother Miguel. Pooled with funds from other secret accounts, the money flowed into the Bank of Miami, mixed with millions of dollars from other sources (including two from Peru and Honduras), then cascaded into the offices of the Donaldson, Lufkin, and Jenrette securities firm. Funds from that company were shown to move on to Morgan Guaranty Trust in New York, from there to Chase Manhattan, then to the Swiss Bank Corporation in Geneva where they landed in secret account number 68156RY and sank permanently from sight.
In Superclass, Rothkopf, a former managing director of Kissinger Associates and an international trade official in the Clinton Administration, has identified roughly 6,000 individuals who have “the ability to regularly influence the lives of millions of people in multiple countries worldwide.” They are the “superclass” of the 21st century, spreading across borders in an ever thickening web, with a growing allegiance, Rothkopf argues, to each other rather than to any particular nation.
Rothkopf’s archetypal member of the superclass is Blackstone Group executive Stephen Schwarzman, who is not only fabulously wealthy, but also chairman of the Kennedy Center, a board member of the New York Public Library, the New York City Ballet, the Film Society of Lincoln Center and the New York City Partnership. These boards, along with the over 100 businesses Blackstone has invested in, the other business councils and advisory boards he sits on, and his Yale and Harvard education, mean that Schwarzman is only one or two affiliations away from any center of power in the world. Rothkopf actually traces the “daisy chain” of Schwarzman’s connections through his board memberships — linking him to Ratan Tata, one of India’s richest men, former Mexican president Ernesto Zedillo and many others. It is these links that create access that translates to influence and determines how the levers of power are pulled.
utopiate » Tue Aug 13, 2013 7:25 pm wrote:His view is that markets are timed to be built up and collapsed on a regular basis by those in the know, leaving everyone who wasn't in on the secret to hold the bag.
“We will slow fundraising only when everyone on earth is a Carlyle investor,” said David Rubenstein, Carlyle co-founder.
July 26, 2013
With market conditions across the globe remaining firmer for a large part of the second quarter, it is no surprise that BlackRock churned out record fee revenues of $2.2 billion for the period. And the strong inflows the company witnessed over the quarter also boosted the size of its assets under management (AUM) to $3.86 trillion - a good 8% improvement over the $3.56 trillion figure at the end of the previous quarter.
Early last month, Fidelity planned to make a major announcement about its ETF strategy, but canceled it after getting hung up with regulators, according to people familiar with the situation.
Boston-based Fidelity is best known for actively managed mutual funds like Contrafund and Magellan, but the company has lagged rivals BlackRock, Vanguard Group and State Street Corp by several years in rolling out an ETF platform.
There are now more than 1,200 U.S. ETFs with assets totaling $1.4 trillion, up from assets of about $140 billion 10 years ago. As of June 30, BlackRock had $575 billion in ETF assets, followed by State Street ($318 billion) and Vanguard ($277 billion), according to State Street Global Advisors. Those three firms account for about 82 percent of the U.S.-listed ETF market.
The bumper year of 2007 was driven almost entirely by two mega-deals on the part of the Chinese government’s sovereign wealth fund, the Chinese Investment Corporation, which bought 10 per cent stakes in Blackstone Group and Morgan Stanley.
Blackstone raises bet on US rental property: The private equity group is buying into a portfolio of 80 buildings in a deal with GE Capital. “The deal valuing the portfolio at about $2.7bn will give Blackstone a majority stake in apartment complexes with roughly 30,000 units in the southern United States, according to people familiar with the matter. It was not immediately clear how much equity the firm will put forward.”
When George W. Bush was sworn in to office in January 2001, everything changed suddenly and dramatically. One of the first things that young Bush did as president was call off the missile control talks that the Clinton administration had been conducting with North Korea for years. Bush revealed open hostility toward North Korea, calling it a rogue state that cannot be trusted. It was a stunning reversal of American policy, which heretofore had been to use diplomacy in mitigating North Korea's military aggression toward South Korea. And it was coming from a man that had virtually no experience in foreign affairs. The nation watched in disbelief.
Not surprisingly, the backlash from Bush's brash actions was felt far and wide. North Korea accused the United States of planting a "time bomb" in the midst of their fragile negotiations with South Korea. The South Korean government received Bush's actions as a rebuff to their safety, knowing that North Korea would be more inclined to attack without Washington's involvement. Kim Dae-jung, South Korea's president, was forced to turn to the European Union for help in filling the sudden gap the United States had created in the peace process between North and South Korea. He was also getting lambasted at home for not being on top of the situation in Washington.
Bush had made the South Koreans look bad, and undermined their safety, all with one fell swoop. Analysts speculated that Bush was motivated by his desire to create a national missile defense system, part of his campaign platform. If North Korea had no missiles to defend against, the thinking went, Bush's need for a missile defense system would evaporate. As absurd as it sounds, peace between North and South Korea, and between North Korea and the United States, did not further his broader agenda in the White House. Regardless of his rationale, he had created an international crisis on just his second month on the job.
This also threatened Carlyle's extensive investments in South Korea, which would plummet in value as instability in the region increased. The threat of war always sends local economies into a tailspin, much like America's economy since September 11. And Carlyle could kiss regulatory approval for future deals goodbye, with South Korean officials feeling slighted by the United States, and particularly George W. Bush. At first it seemed as if this was a rare case in which being associated with the Bushes was not going to work to the benefit of Carlyle. But that would not prove to be the case.
Adding to the disarray George W.'s stance toward North Korea was causing, the unionists at KorAm bank were starting to rebel against their new American owners, accusing Carlyle of being nothing more than a speculative investor that had already broken its promise not to intervene with management. Employee representatives at the company believed that Carlyle intended to restructure the company, probably threatening jobs. And the union was rallying against Carlyle. The situation was dire. Carlyle had just ploughed nearly $1 billion into South Korea, and the man they all thought would be so good for business, George W. Bush, was on the verge of screwing it all up. Something had to be done.
On June 6, Bush reversed course. In a statement, the president announced plans to resume negotiations with North Korea, essentially picking up where the Clinton administration had left off. Among the issues that the new administration would work on with North Korea was improving relations between North and South Korea. The sigh of relief could be heard around the world, and especially from Carlyle's offices on Pennsylvania Avenue and in downtown Seoul. just like that, the situation was all better. But what could have created the sudden change of heart?
On June 10, 2001, just a few days after the welcome announcement by President Bush, the New York Times reported that the senior Bush had forcefully argued for his son to reopen negotiations with North Korea shortly before President Bush did just that. The article opened:
In an effort to influence one of his son's most crucial foreign policy decisions, former President George Bush sent to the president through his aides a memo forcefully arguing the need to reopen negotiations with North Korea, according to people who have seen the document.
It was the first time that anyone had tangibly seen the influence of the father on the son. According to the article, Bush Sr. felt that his son was being unduly influenced by the Pentagon, and that he should adopt a more moderate stance toward the Korean peninsula. He also spelled out that the hard-line policy toward North Korea was undermining the government in South Korea, thereby hurting U.S. interests in North Asia.
White House spokesman An Fleischer confirmed the report in the Times, and told the press that the argument for reopening negotiations came originally from Donald Gregg, former ambassador to South Korea under the first Bush administration. Fleischer said that Gregg had sent a memo to the senior Bush, who then sent the memo to national security advisor Condoleeza Rice, who then passed along "the thoughts in the note" to the president. It was a way of watering down the connection between George W. Bush and his father, even though it has been widely reported that the two speak regularly. Nobody in the White House wanted the press to get the impression that senior Bush was directly influencing the president. That's probably why Fleischer's accounting of the events made so little sense. Why Bush Sr. would have to go through Rice to relay crucial information on foreign policy to his son, when he talks to him twice a week on the telephone, is anyone's guess.
Bush Sr. went on to do even more damage control, recording reassuring remarks on U.S. policy to be distributed among participants in a crucial meeting between South Korean President Kim Dae-jung and North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-il, on Cheju Island. It seemed the former president was everywhere at once, acting as counsel to his son, ambassador to Korea, and businessman for Carlyle. For a man that had supposedly retired from politics, Bush Sr. was awfully busy.
The folks at Carlyle refuse to talk about how ex-president Bush is compensated for his work on their behalf. Former employees, however, say that he is invested in the funds that he helps raise and place. If that is the case, the senior Bush's involvement in foreign policy regarding South Korea is a clear conflict of interest. He stands to gain financially from decisions that he is urging his son to make. It doesn't get any more egregious than that. But the press missed the connection at the time. Indeed it was a difficult connection to make, given that Bush Sr.'s trips to Korea and his work on behalf of Carlyle was kept very quiet. Then another story hit the front pages. Bush Sr. was at it again.
This time the New York Times reported that in July 2001, just months after he had advised his son on North Korea, the elder Bush had placed a call to Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia on behalf of his son, to reassure Saudi Arabia's leadership that his son's "heart is in the right place," when it comes to Middle East policy. The call was necessitated by the younger Bush, who had upset the Arabs with his one-sided approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. And Daddy was again there to bail him out.
The report said "former President Bush said that his son's 'heart is in the right place' and that his son was 'going to do the right thing,' a Middle East diplomat said. A senior administration official said that the phone call, warm and familiar in tone, was designed to encourage Abdullah to think of the new president as having a grasp of the Middle East similar to that of his father. According to one of the accounts, President Bush was in the room when his father made the call."
The news was stunning, and it undermined the credibility of George W. Bush on foreign policy. Who was making the decisions in the White House? Why didn't Bush Senior run for president instead? But more than that, the news of Bush Sr.'s continued involvement in foreign policy was undermining the credibility of both Bushes ability to keep politics and family business apart. Like the situation on Korea, Carlyle's extensive business interests in Saudi Arabia and throughout the Middle East, were in grave danger if the younger Bush kept pissing off the royal family. So the Senior Bush needed to step in and preserve the relationship once again. It was testament to the sway ex-president Bush still held over foreign affairs. And it didn't look good.
The reports of Bush Sr.'s actions sent the Washington, DC-based public advocacy groups into a tizzy. Tom Fitton, general counsel of judicial Watch, a conservative watchdog group in the Beltway, is beside himself to this day. "It screamed conflict of interest," he says. "We asked publicly that the senior Bush should step down. To this day we don't understand why he hasn't resigned. It's causing a scandal."
That Judicial Watch has called on Bush Sr. to resign from Carlyle is more telling than you might think. This is not your average, ultraliberal watchdog organization. Judicial Watch is a public interest group that was conceived during the Clinton administration as a way to monitor activities that diminish the public's trust in government. It is an extremely conservative group, designed originally to bring down a Democratic president that the group felt was corrupt. "The Clinton administration was the most corrupt in history," says Fitton. "He was a rapist who took money from the Chinese. But he's lowered the bar so far that there is an acceptance of this everyday type of corruption." Other watchdog groups had been howling at Carlyle's antics for years, but when judicial Watch, which had a reputation as a Republican-friendly group, could no longer look the other way, Carlyle had to take notice. "We're a conservative group, but we're not Republican. The Carlyle Group has been very upset with us, but this is an extraordinary company, very unique," says Fitton. "They hire these people, and I don't think they hire them for their good looks. I'm sure it smarts for them to know that we have raised ethical concerns on the part of the president's father."
Fitton points out that not only has the former president been making investments for Carlyle and weighing in on foreign policy that directly affects those investments, but he is also privy to CIA briefings whenever he sees fit, referred to internally at the CIA as "President's daddy's daily briefing," a right that all ex-presidents maintain. And according to press reports, Bush Sr. still requests and receives CIA briefings often. Despite being 10 years removed from his presidency, Bush Sr. remains an extremely powerful and influential man. Imagine what a global enterprise, that does large amounts of business with arms contractors and foreign governments, could do with weekly CIA briefings. Or a company with the ability to influence foreign governments and global events. A company like that would have access information that would set it apart from any company to come before it. A company like that could be very successful. A company like that might look a lot Carlyle.
By 2001, the world outside of Washington, DC, was becoming dimly aware of the Carlyle Group. People would chat about them casually at cocktail parties, noting the intimidating employee roster and joking about shadow governments and X-files episodes. But it was all speculation at that point. No one in the media had put together the apparent conflicts of interests the Bushes had cultivated in Korea and Saudi Arabia. Yet people had a vague and nagging notion that there was something wrong with the way Carlyle was conducting its business. They were just having trouble putting a name to it. Everyone was looking for the proverbial smoking gun. Little did they know that it was literally a smoking gun they would find.
The saga began in the summer of 1997, when Carlyle was raising money like mad, hiring world leaders, and, in general, becoming the dominating global private equity firm it is today. Among the investments Carlyle had targeted for its Carlyle Partners II fund-the one chock full of defense, aerospace, and security companies-was a maker of armored vehicles named United Defense. The owners of United Defense were FMC Corporation and Harsco Corporation-the same company that Carlyle had unsuccessfully and hostilely tried to acquire six years earlier. All Carlyle got for its $63 million back then was one lousy board seat with Harsco. But what a valuable board seat that had suddenly become.
The news around the defense industry August 1997 was that General Dynamics had bid $1 billion for United Defense, far more than any other bidder. General Dynamics already made armored vehicles, so United Defense's expertise-they made the Bradley fighting vehicles used in the Gulf War-fit perfectly with that of General Dynamics. The deal seemed like a no-brainer: highest bidder, synchronized interests, little overlap. There really was no competition. But at the last minute, Harsco and FMC decided instead to sell to the Carlyle Group, which had submitted a low-ball bid of $850 million, 15 percent less than General Dynamics had been offering. It turns out that rumors had begun to circulate around Washington, DC, that General Dynamics was going to run into antitrust issues. Eventually, the rumors grew so loud that General Dynamics was forced to back out of the bidding, and Carlyle was there to pick up the scraps. It was another stunning victory for Carlyle.
In the summer of 2002, Carlyle helped form the China Venture Capital Association, a nebulous organization charged with warding off corruption in China and strengthening ties with the Chinese government. Chang Sun, the chairman of the group, said "within the industry we need to have a minimal level of code of conduct so that we don't have people who ruin the reputation of the industry. We will talk about how to regulate ourselves rather than be regulated by the government." A truly scary prospect, but nothing we haven't seen before.
China, like Saudi Arabia decades ago, is fertile ground for American investment. Edging its way toward a more capitalistic society, China is still a massive untapped market controlled largely by the government: a combination tailor made for Carlyle's special brand of access capitalism. In other words, watch this space.
Another area to keep an eye on would be Europe. In the fall of 2002, Carlyle completed an acquisition of Qinetiq, the research and development arm of the United Kingdom's Ministry of Defense. When news of the acquisition broke in England, the MOD came under fire for potentially compromising the national security of the United Kingdom by selling such a crucial unit to an American company run by so many ex-politicians. Fiona Draper, a representative of the trade union Prospect, which includes the scientists at Qinetiq, told reporters, "the fact that they are a foreign company will obviously exacerbate my members concerns, given Carlyle's fairly opaque structure, there must be concerns over whether undue influence may be brought to bear which may not be in Britain's interest."
The "opaque structure" to which Draper refers is not uncommon for private companies, especially private equity companies. The nature of the business is such that a private company buys other private companies, none of which are obligated to reveal their financial records. All of which makes gathering information on Carlyle very challenging. Though it excels in buying and selling businesses that are under heavy government regulation, Carlyle itself is under almost no scrutiny from federal overseers. The only thing keeping Carlyle the least bit honest at this point is public interest groups and the media. And at a time when American patriotism is at an all-time high following the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, criticizing the current president and his father for questionable business practices is a tricky business. There is frighteningly little tolerance for muckraking at the moment.
Conspiracy theorists that obsess on secret societies and outlandish plots overlook the more insidious and destructive effects of a company like Carlyle. By insinuating itself into the very fabric of the world's economic structure, Carlyle has accomplished far more than any Trilateral Commission or Masonic society could dream. They have made themselves an indispensable part of the international community's cash flow. Millions of people are invested in Carlyle and don't even know it, like the 1.3 million people relying on CalPERS to manage their pension fund. Do they even know that CalPERS is a part owner of Carlyle?
Ultimately, the success of the Carlyle Group depends on its continuing ability to gain access to high-level government officials, thereby getting a jump on policy changes, both domestic and international. And that access hinges on Carlyle's remarkable track record of hiring the most powerful men in the world. To keep their stockpile of political powerhouses fresh, don't be surprised to see the company reach deep into the current Bush administration after the president leaves office and snare anyone from Cohn Powell to Dick Cheney to Donald Rumsfeld to George W. Bush himself. The revolving door to Carlyle is always turning.
Though company officials are outwardly amused by the rumors and accusations that swirl around Carlyle, there is a reason why people fear them. It's difficult to explain away certain aspects of the company. Like why George Bush Sr., in the face of mounting criticism and the undermining of his son's credibility in office, doesn't simply resign from the company? He is already wealthy, with his family's legacy secure. And there must be a thousand different job opportunities available for the ex-president that don't involve obvious conflicts of interest or incidents of international political intrigue. Or why James Baker III, with his own law firm and a foundation that bears his name, feels the need to continue toiling for a firm that clearly threatens his heretofore untarnished reputation? It begs the question: What are these men up to?
From Watergate to Iran-Contra to Lewinsky-gate, the public and the press have performed admirably in keeping our politicians honest, or at least accountable, while they are in office. But the civil checks and balances mechanism breaks down after politicians leave office. The power and influence of politicians diminishes upon their retirement from public service, but it is still formidable. And the work that Carlyle's ex-politicos perform, both in nature and in scale, is unlike anything that's come before them. That's why Carlyle will continue to be both a compelling story to follow, as well as a cautionary tale.
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