Give George Sorros a tossed salad after you get done using your face for Lynne Stewarts bicycle seat:
NEW YORK -- He has been a legend on Wall Street for decades, but now the brilliant Hungarian-born financier and international philanthropist is becoming a household name -- and may turn out to be a key figure in shaping the post-communist world agenda. Long a publicity-shy financial cipher, George Soros in the past year or so has sought -- and won -- a high-profile role not only as a financial-markets statesman of sorts, but also as a global activist on behalf of emerging East European democracies and Bosnia in particular. Soros has deftly balanced these two different pursuits, putting his financial gains at the service of his political vision. "My success in the financial markets enables me to finance my foundations in Eastern Europe," he wrote in a June letter to the Times of London clarifying his position. "I do not seek profits in Eastern Europe, and I do not act as a philanthropic institution in the financial markets."
Business page readers know him as the sure-footed manager of the $5.3 billion Quantum Fund , an offshore investment vehicle which has piled up a stunning 35 percent average annual gain since 1969, and one of the most influential players in the global financial markets. When Soros speaks, investors listen, as demonstrated by the sharp rally in the price of *gold bullion* and mining shares after Soros made known that he had taken an interest in the precious metal. Comments by Soros this summer put pressure on the German mark, and his stance in the recent European currency crisis was closely watched.
The British know Soros as "The Man Who Broke the Bank of England," a reference to his speculation against the devalued British pound last September . The high-stakes foreign exchange markets play netted Soros and the investors he represents about $1.3 billion. Business Week put him on its cover this month as "The Man Who Moves Markets." The fall of the pound underscored the power imbalance between world central banks and investment giants like Soros' Quantum Fund. These "hedge funds," as they are called, because they typically hedge their bets using futures, options and other sophisticated strategies, pursue state-of-the-art speculation on an enormous scale.
Once big investors like Soros take a view on exchange rates, they "can more often than not make that view self-fulfilling ," conceded the Bank for International Settlements in its recent annual report. The BIS is often described as the "bank for central bankers," because its role is to coordinate global monetary flows and policies.
More than one public official in the United States and Europe has questioned the power of speculators like Soros, whose fund came under federal scrutiny for its possible involvement in a 1991 U.S. Treasury bond market scandal which shook Wall Street and the Salomon Brothers securities firm. (But no charges were brought against Quantum.) Soros and other New York-based hedge fund managers, such as Michael Steinhardt of Steinhardt Partners, Julian Robertson of Tiger Fund and Paul Tudor Jones of Tudor Futures Fund, are the trend-setters for the mercurial and highly reactive international capital markets. They are closely watched with a mixture of fascination and fear for their ability to set off financial market landslides. And no one is more closely watched and heeded than Soros himself. To some, this is nothing new. "Soros speaks through the microphone of hundreds of millions of dollars," commented James Grant, editor of an influential Wall Street newsletter and a financial historian. "It's not unusual that a very successful person should have a vital role to play in monetary affairs."
Soros would be the first to admit he is not infallible. In 1981, Institutional Investor magazine called him "the world's greatest money manager." That same year his Quantum Fund assets fell by 23 percent. In 1987, Soros predicted a Japanese stock market crash -- then lost $800 million in the Wall Street plunge he did not expect.
But Soros is equally intriguing for his great generosity to former communist states in Eastern Europe as well as the Soviet Union itself. A native of Hungary, which he fled in 1947 after surviving the war by going underground with his Jewish family, Soros has spent hundreds of millions of dollars encouraging democratic emergences. His New York-based Soros Foundations organization -- its offices are in the same building as his investment operation -- oversees a score of local foundations from Warsaw to Sarajevo through which he directs funds for educational and cultural projects. For instance, he established the Central European University in Budapest and Prague. Soros, 63, has been involved in Eastern Europe since 1984, when he gave scholarships and photocopiers to Hungary's political opposition, helping undermine the communists who were forced out of power in 1989. He is a prominent figure in the region -- though ultra-nationalists in Hungary and Romania have made him the target of anti-Semitic attacks. Over the past year Soros has stepped up his involvement in Eastern Europe, assuming a high-profile role in the Bosnian situation. Last December he pledged $50 million to humanitarian aid in the bloodied ex-Yugoslavian republic (around the same time he gave $100 million to keep ex-Soviet scientists in research, and lent $25 million to struggling Macedonia so it could buy winter fuel). His engagement has gone beyond money, though. Concerned at reports from his field staff of ongoing genocide in Bosnia, Soros lobbied all the way up to the Oval Office, where he met President Clinton in the spring, for a firmer U.S. stance in the Balkans. Meantime, his money has filled gaps left by United Nations aid, supplying an oxygen generator to the Sarajevo hospital, and setting up a satellite link for phone calls to the besieged city, among other relief projects. More than a benefactor, Soros is also a self-styled philosopher -- as a young man he studied at London School of Economics under Austrian philosopher Karl Popper, an opponent of Marxism and proponent of open societies -- who is helping to shape the post-communist agenda. Soros recently made an impassioned appeal on British television and in New York for the West to save Sarajevo as a principled stand. Soros warned that the unspeakable brutality seen in Bosnia arose from the doctrine of the "ethnic state," an ideology which threatened to poison other former communist regions if the West made no response in Bosnia, in particular by lifting the siege of Sarajevo. "The objective in Bosnia is not to achieve victory, but to prevent the victory of the ethnic state," Soros told the British public. "And the best place to take a stand is Sarajevo."
It probably was a coincidence, but two weeks after that impassioned appeal, the U.S. government was threatening to bomb the Serbian forces poised to overwhelm Sarajevo's defenses, and by last week the United Nations was moving to take the city under protective administration. Soros clearly is a man to watch -- and not only for investors. Copyright Union-Tribune Publishing Co.
In today’s America, ask a growing number of high school and college students; their teachers and professors; the self-anointed media elite and/or hard working men and women of all ethnicities, the question, “What is a Republican?”, and you’ll be told “… a rich, greedy, egotistical individual, motivated only by money and the desire to accumulate more and more of it, at the expense of the environment … the working poor ….and all whom they exploit…”
I am a Republican … I am none of those things… and I don’t know any Republicans who are.
WHAT I AM … first and foremost, is a loving husband of some 52 plus years, the father of four and an American who’s proud of his country… and his country’s heritage.
WHAT I AM … is the grandson of immigrants who risked everything, including their lives and those of their children, to escape tyranny in search of freedom.
WHAT I AM … is a man who grew up during the Depression and witnessed, first hand, the effects of the Stock Market crash and the soup lines that followed. I watched as both my parents and grand parents, who had very little themselves, share what food they had with a half dozen other families, who had even less.
WHAT I AM … is someone who worked his way through college by holding down three and four jobs at a time and then used that education to build a better life.
WHAT I AM … is a husband who, at age 24, started his own business for the “privilege” of working 60, 70 and 80 hours a week, risking everything I had, including my health, in search of a better life for myself and my loved ones.
WHAT I AM … is a businessman whose blood, sweat and tears…. and plenty of them…, made it possible for me to provide a secure living, not only for my family and myself, but also for literally hundreds of my employees throughout the years. Employees, who in turn, were able to buy their own homes, raise their own families and give back to their communities and their country.
WHAT I AM … is a man who believes in God; a God who has blessed this country… and all for which it stands.
WHAT I AM … is someone who knows, if you doubt miracles exist in today’s world, you need only to look into the face of those who received them … and the eyes of those who give them.
WHAT I AM … is an American who’s proud that his President embraces a belief in God; proud of a President who understands, as “politically incorrect” as it may be, there is evil in this world and for the security and safety of all freedom loving people everywhere, it must be confronted… and it must be defeated.
WHAT I AM … is an American who takes comfort in the knowledge that our President refuses to allow decisions concerning the very safety and security of this nation, to be governed by the political whims of foreign governments.
WHAT I AM … is tired of hearing from leading Democrats who see only negativity in America; racism in her people; class warfare in her society and “political incorrectness” in her character.
WHAT I AM … is a former democrat who now understands that it is the soldier and not the reporter that guarantees us our freedoms of press, speech and dissent.
WHAT I AM … is a man who believes in the sanctity of life. A man who is repulsed by the pandering of the political left for votes, at the expense of the unborn.
WHAT I AM … is a husband and father who believes in the sanctity of marriage and the preservation of the family unit.
WHAT I AM … is a movie go-er who is repulsed by those insecure, socially inept, elementary thinking, ego-inflated “entertainers” who have appointed themselves “experts” in the fields of national security and geo-politics and then use their forum to attack this nation, its leaders and its actions…. much to the delight and encouragement of our enemies.
WHAT I AM … is an American who understands the difference between “censorship” and “choice”. Evidently, these individuals do not, because when these same “celebrities” receive public ridicule for their offensive actions, the first thing they yell is “Censorship!”. What they seem incapable of understanding is… the right of free speech and dissent is shared equally by those offended… as well as those who offend. I support and will continue to support those films and performers whom I choose to … and refuse to support those I don’t. It is my right as an American … a right I will continue to enthusiastically exercise.
WHAT I AM … is a voter, tired of politicians, who, every time their voting records are subjected to public scrutiny, try to divert attention from their political and legislative failures by accusing their opponents of “attack ads” and “negative campaigning”…. and the news media who allow them to get away with it.
WHAT I AM … is a Catholic who loves his God and his Faith… and who’s been taught to respect all religions whose teachings are based in love, peace and charity. As such, I am embarrassed and ashamed of those individuals, in both private and public life, whose decisions and actions are devoid of any sense of character or morals; individuals who are only driven by what’s best for them … rather than what’s right … often times at the expense of many …. including our national security.
WHAT I AM … is a realist who understands that the terrorist attack that murdered hundreds of innocent Russian children could have occurred here, in our heartland. That’s why I sincerely believe America needs now, more than ever, a President who sees with a clear and focused vision and who speaks with a voice when heard by both friend and foe alike, is understood, respected and believed.
WHAT I AM … is eternally grateful to Ronald Reagan for having the bravery to speak out against Communism and the courage of his convictions in leading the fight to defeat it; and George W. Bush for the vision, courage, conviction and leadership he has shown in America’s war on terrorism amidst both the constant and vicious, personal and political attacks both he and his family are made to endure.
WHAT I AM … is a human being, full of numerous faults and failures, but a man nonetheless, who, though not always successful, has continually strived to do “what’s right” instead of “what’s easy”. A man who is challenging the religious leaders of all faiths, to not only preach to their congregations the fundamentals of “what’s right” and “what’s wrong”, but to also then hold them accountable for their actions in both the public and private sectors.
WHAT I AM … is disgusted with the Courts who, on one hand, call the murder of a pregnant woman a “double homicide” but then refer to the abortion of her baby as, “pro-choice”.
WHAT I AM … is someone deeply troubled by a political party which embraces a candidate whose primary “leadership” qualities center around his protesting of the Vietnam war and his labeling the honorable men and women who fought in it, (50,000 of whom gave their lives in that action), as rapists, and war criminals. That same political party then stepped forward this year to block the appearance of a true Vietnam war hero, retired Admiral and former United States Senator, Jeremiah Denton, (a man who spent seven years and seven torturous months in a North Vietnam prison), from speaking before an open session of the California legislature as part of that state’s 4th of July celebration. The reason Democrats gave for refusing to allow this American hero to speak before their state legislature was because of the “conservative” nature of his views. As an American, that troubles me deeply ….as well it should you.
WHAT I AM … is a man who feels the need to spend, $104, 655.60,(tax paid) of his own money, to purchase this advertisement, in order to set the story straight. Some may say this money would have been better spent feeding the world’s poor. At the risk of sounding self-serving, as an American and as a Republican, for the last six decades of my life, I have done exactly that… and more. Following the examples of my parents and grand parents, I have used my earnings to feed the poor, shelter the homeless, provide housing for the elderly and medical care for the sick….. and continue to do so… and I’m not alone in that work.
WHAT I AM … is someone who is paying for this announcement, at my sole expense, in hopes of opening the eyes of those led blindly by ill-informed elements of our great nation, who, through either ignorance, or malicious intent, repeatedly attack and belittle those of us who belong to a political party that holds true to the belief, “… the rights of the governed, exceed the power of the government”. For those interested, I am speaking only as a tax-paying individual who is in no way associated with The Republican National Committee, nor with any of its directors, or delegates.
WHAT I AM … is a man who understands, “the American way of life” is a message of self-empowerment for all.
WHAT I AM … is an American who is grateful that our nation gives each of us the opportunity of self-determination and the right to benefit from the fruits of self achievement.
WHAT I AM … is an American who wants to preserve that way of life for all who seek it.
WHAT I AM … is blessed to be an American…. and proud to be Republican.
George J. Esseff, Sr.
For a free reprint of this “Open Letter,” go to [url]www.whatiam.net[/url]
I know that this guy is a republican.
Westerfield, a 50-year-old engineer and twice-divorced father of two grown children, maintains his innocence. Authorities say his motive was sex: Searches of Westerfield's property uncovered an interest in child pornography.
I voted absentee for Kerry last week. Going to Pennsylvania on election day. 6 more days until we get a new president. What an exciting time to be an American.
I've already built the fallout shelter for the nuclear blast that will occur when Kerry is President. Hope all you righties are preparing yourself for a nuclear winter when that "liberal" flip flopper takes over :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes: