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View Diary: Baker Key to Dubai Ports Mess (179 comments)

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  •  This is really intriguing (4.00)
    It seems like Baker is an almost all-powerful global agent who routinely oversees huge transfers of money from one nation/corporation to another.  From The Nation article:

    The secret deal involves a complex transaction to transfer ownership of as much as $57 billion in unpaid Iraqi debts. The debts, now owed to the government of Kuwait, would be assigned to a foundation created and controlled by a consortium in which the key players are the Carlyle Group, the Albright Group (headed by another former Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright) and several other well-connected firms. Under the deal, the government of Kuwait would also give the consortium $2 billion up front to invest in a private equity fund devised by the consortium, with half of it going to Carlyle.

    Sometimes I wonder what these people's lives are like.  I mean, at what point do they become satisfied that their ridiculous wealth is enough?

    •  Did you see Syriana? (4.00)
      Christopher Plummer's character was totally James Baker.

      I think at a certain point they don't even care about the $$$ anymore, it is just a way to keep score in their sick power game.

    •  It's a game to him. (4.00)
      Baker loves it, it keeps him young. He's the Babe Ruth of dealmaking powerbrokers. I believe the guy plays by the rules if there really are any in his world. I think he and Jimmy Carter are close so maybe that's why he endorsed the deal. I think a number of Dems have a great deal of respect for him. Jews never forgave him for famously exclaiming in a cabinet meeting "Fuck the Jews. They don't vote for us anyway."

      I saw Baker walking down a corridor at the Grand Rapids Airport. He's not a large man but you could tell by looking at him that he's important. I'm thinking what in the hell is Baker doing here. Up comes the Chairman of Amway who warmly greeted him. A short while after that Amway announced that they'd been approved to distibute their products in Japan. Bingo.

      I would have been shocked if Jim Baker hadn't been intimately involved in the UAE port deal. The Bush's have the brand name. Baker is the closer.

      •  Baker spoke (none)
        in my little town about 4 years ago. It was shortly after Baker-Botts had taken to defending various Middle Eastern poobahs against the 9/11 families.
        The audience was 98% blue haired old coots who thought Bush had really won in Florida.  I had the most wonderful question starting with Saudi oil money being the single most corrupting influence in the world and ending with Grover Norquist's ties to terrorist funders (with documentation from the Weekly Standard).  He kept his temper, but turned beet red.  That was satisfying. These folks live in an amoral universe with people just like themselves.  How else can they be so empty?

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