Top Leaderboard, Site wide
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
December 3, 2016 Disclaimer: Please read.
x

Statements and opinions expressed in articles are those of the authors, not Truthdig. Truthdig takes no responsibility for such statements or opinions.






‘The Field of Fight’

Truthdig Bazaar more items

 
Report
Email this item Print this item

Who Is Obama Playing Ball With?

Posted on Aug 25, 2009

By Amy Goodman

  It looked like it was business as usual for President Barack Obama on the first day of his Martha’s Vineyard vacation, as he spent five hours golfing with Robert Wolf, president of UBS Investment Bank and chairman and CEO of UBS Group Americas. Wolf, an early financial backer of Obama’s presidential campaign, raised $250,000 for him back in 2006, and in February was appointed by the president to the White House’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board. Economic recovery for whom?

  Interestingly, Wolf’s appointment came in the same month that UBS agreed to pay the U.S. $780 million to settle civil and criminal charges related to helping people in the U.S. avoid taxes. Not to worry. UBS, an ailing bank with a pre-existing condition, had great insurance coverage. It was actually receiving $2.5 billion in a backdoor bailout from bailed-out insurance giant AIG. Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, said, “It looks like we’re simply laundering this money through AIG.” UBS, this bank that shelters wealthy tax dodgers, was actually being bailed out by hardworking U.S. taxpayers.

  UBS, which once stood for Union Bank of Switzerland, was founded more than a century ago. Its success hinges on Switzerland’s famous banking secrecy laws, allowing people to squirrel money away in untraceable “numbered accounts.” Secret Swiss bank accounts have become a favorite way for wealthy people in the U.S. to dodge taxes. According to the U.S. Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, in a July 2008 report, “From at least 2000 to 2007, UBS made a concerted effort to open accounts in Switzerland for wealthy U.S. clients, employing practices that could facilitate, and have resulted in, tax evasion by U.S. clients.”

  As part of the settlement, UBS agreed to share client account information with the U.S. government. While there may be as many as 52,000 such accounts, UBS is releasing only about 4,450 client names. Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Doug Shulman said in a press release, “We will be receiving an unprecedented amount of information on taxpayers who have evaded their tax obligation by hiding money offshore at UBS.” UBS will be sending account holders notification that their names may be among those delivered to the IRS, and the IRS, in turn, is granting leniency to tax dodgers who turn themselves in before Sept. 23. Account holders won’t know if their names are included, though, so gamblers among them may keep quiet and hope their accounts stay secret.

  Last Friday, as Wolf was preparing for his golf game with Obama, UBS whistle-blower Bradley Birkenfeld was sentenced to 40 months in prison for facilitating offshore tax evasion through UBS banking schemes, despite assisting federal investigators in exposing the secretive bank.

Advertisement

Square, Site wide

  Above the entrance to UBS’ headquarters in Zurich is a bust of the Greek god Hermes—not only the fleet-footed messenger of the gods, but also the god of thieves and merchants. The symbolism is striking. Whether or not Wolf won his golf game against Obama, UBS has clearly scored a hole in one.
 
  Denis Moynihan contributed research to this column.

  Amy Goodman is the host of “Democracy Now!,” a daily international TV/radio news hour airing on more than 750 stations in North America. She is the co-author of “Standing Up to the Madness: Ordinary Heroes in Extraordinary Times,” recently released in paperback.

  © 2009 Amy Goodman

  Distributed by King Features Syndicate


New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

Join the conversation

Load Comments

By christian96, August 30, 2009 at 5:36 am Link to this comment

DBM——Thanks for your interpretations and suggestions.  I don’t think you were rambling.
I found your comments coherent.  I do not usually
write things down before typing which is why you
will find grammatical and spelling errors in my posts.  I just type as I think.  There were so many
excerpts from Higham’s book I just set it aside with
the intent of “getting to it later.”  Typical of my
personality.  I will peruse your suggestion “Gangsof
America.”  Hopefully, later today.  Thanks.

Report this

By DBM, August 30, 2009 at 3:42 am Link to this comment

Christian96,

I responded to Night-Gaunt’s update on 27 August including a mention of what I thought of the excerpts of Higham’s book that I also had a look at.  I think his logic and some of his observations would be well worth looking at but even the small amount of the book I read is high on assertion but not on corroboration or reference.  There are plenty of excellent historical accounts which are better supported. 

I must admit that I find Noam Chomsky’s analysis of this sort of thing more sensible.  Whether writing about historical precedent or current events he does not pretend that there are conspiracies everywhere.  What he contends is that there are self-reinforcing systems and beliefs which amount to the same thing.  The powerful are never wrong (especially in hindsight), there is always reasonable justification for the exploitation of the weak (sometimes while “helping” them).

So, were there commercial ties with Nazi Germany?  Sure, I’ve no doubt ... but I wouldn’t expect to have to identify shadowy treasonous criminals to explain why.  As I suggested, have a look at “Gangs of America” (you can get the whole book in PDF at http://www.gangsofamerica.com but it would be good to get the author some royalties too by buying the book in a store!) which I found an excellent description of how the current corporate power structures have come about.  Also, it is heresy to say so, but the Nazis were just one of a number of despotic regimes that have come about over the centuries.  The thing that makes WWII stand out is the state of technology and logistics at the time of the war.  It was the “high tide” mark of scale in conventional warfare and introduced the atomic age which has prevented all out conventional war since (at great cost and risk).  So why wouldn’t corporations do business with them?  If making money from and dealing with both sides in a conflict was a bad thing, Oliver North would be in prison instead of on Faux News!

I too worked for Big Blue ... there was a large book which came out about 10 years ago detailing how IBM was involved with the Nazis (for example selling machines for the census which collected information later used for ethnic cleansing).  I never did read it.  I’m sure a similar case could be made about many large corporations.

Regarding Fusion Centres ... I suggest you start by looking the wikipedia entry for “Fusion Center”.  They’re just one more way that the GWOT has been used as an excuse to concentrate power and restrict civil liberty.  Roughly, they idea was to avoid the situation where multiple law enforcement and intelligence agencies made mistakes because they didn’t work together (the assumption is that many of the 9/11 terrorists “slipped through the fingers” of various agencies - that’s the official view).  The reality has been quasi-military domestically focussed bodies with unclear mandates, responsibilities and rules.  Not a good recipe…

As with my 27 August update, this one rambles a bit.  I find it hard to be cogent writing in this little box but I never have time to write separately and then paste it in.  I apologise to anyone who finds my stream of thinking writing hard to follow!

Report this
Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, August 28, 2009 at 8:40 pm Link to this comment

1.  Have the big money people invested their
money in the Euro?

I would say yes but they plan on having a new dollar after the US falls and they will wipe away all debts by saying it was the previous country that had it.

2.  How long will it be before riots break out
in America?

When the economy really fails hard and the gov’t can’t do anything about it. http://www.partyorlov.com see #3 collapse, that is when I think the Cabal will come forth and save us from the chaos with a strict theocratic militarized nation-state. Most will jump at the chance.

3.  When the riots break out will they occur
mostly in cities?

Of course.

4.  Will the Pentagon send troops to try to stop
the rioters?

The local police and national guard plus the Infra Guard and even Xe and Triple Canopy too. Just like in Iraq could be used. The sonic and microwave crowd control devices will obviate the need for a large number of men.

5.  Will American people be killed by the troops
from the Pentagon?

Maybe some depending. The majority will be incapacitated from the microwave devices you can’t escape when they fire it. Like you were on fire!

6.  Will European troops be sent to help the
American people when they are attacked by the
Pentagon?

No, see above. And DBM‘s comments.

7 I WONDER? I do it all the time and research and write for myself on this and other subjects.

Report this

By christian96, August 28, 2009 at 5:28 am Link to this comment

DBM——What do you mean by “Fusion Centres?”
“Night-Gaunt” mentioned a book by Charles Higham
titled “Trading With The Enemy: The Nazi-American
Money Plot 1933-1949.” Are you familiar with the
book?  When I typed it online last night I got
several excerpts.  What do you think of the book?
I watched a TV program a couple weeks ago discussing
IBM’s role in supplying the Nazis with equipment
to classify which peoples would be murdered.  I use
to be a salesman for IBM early in my career until
a personality clash with my supervisor sent me
packing.  Two months previously I had won the “Super
Bowl” in sales school at White Plains, New York.
40 of us were divided into 2 groups to compete in
demonstrating a sales pitch.  I won 1st place in our
group and competed with a black fellow from Detroit
who won 1st place in the other group.  They called
the competition The Super Bowl.  I won and was
rewarded by having dinner with the vice-president
of IBM.  After selling my monthly quota in two weeks
I thought I was going to be a hot-shot salesman.
My father spent hard earned money working in a coal
mines in West Virginia to buy me a 1967 Chevy Camero
for graduating from college.  I traded that Camero
in for a Bonneville Convertible like most young men
out of the hills of West Virginia would have done.
Two months later I lost my job and had to take the
convertible back to the dealership in Alexandria,
Virginia.  The dealer said, “I’m losing a lot of
money by you bringing this car back.”  I replied,
“You are losing money?  I just lost a Chevy Camero!”
I’ve always felt terrible about losing that car my
father worked hard to buy.  Oh well, I’m drifting.
Now that I look back on it, I’m glad I lost the job.
That helped me get to the point I’m at.  I would be
interested in your opinion about the book.

Report this

By DBM, August 27, 2009 at 9:27 pm Link to this comment

I should add to point 1 that as well as the Chinese and Arabs moving to the Euro ... you would find that those UBS bank accounts that rich Americans are using to avoid paying their taxes are in Euros. There will be plenty of that over there.

Report this

By DBM, August 27, 2009 at 9:23 pm Link to this comment

Mostly guesses and opinions but I’ll have a go:

1.  Have the big money people invested their
money in the Euro?
Yes, the big money people are starting to flee the U.S. dollar.  When the Chinese complained about the safety of their investment in T-Bills due to the U.S. deficit that was an indication that they (and the Arabs) are considering their options.

2.  How long will it be before riots break out
in America?
As I understand it, in China there are about 80-100 riots every year among the dispossessed (mostly former peasant farmers now working in factories and construction) which you never hear about.  It could happen here but Amnericans are still way better off than the poor Chinese and it doesn’t seem to slow their economic and government powers much at all.  So how soon might not matter ... whether anyone in power gives a shit one way or the other will.

3.  When the riots break out will they occur
mostly in cities?
For riots you need crowds ... so yes, mostly in the cities by definition.

4.  Will the Pentagon send troops to try to stop
the rioters?
The Pentagon is already using troops domestically (spying on potential protest groups and as part of “fusion centres”).  Whether those troops resort to violence is a moot point given that domestic forces are becoming better and better armed anyway.  The interesting thing is “who is driving / controlling the fusion centres?” 

5.  Will American people be killed by the troops
from the Pentagon?
Could be ... it may be blamed on law enforcement officials instead or it may be that the military are “needed” by domestic law enforcement ... after all there is a War on Terror (whatever they choose to call it now).  Surely that’s a good enough excuse?

6.  Will European troops be sent to help the
American people when they are attacked by the
Pentagon?
Probably not. 
For one, the U.S. military has more resources than the rest of the world combined and doesn’t need European help against essentially unarmed civilians.  (forget the NRA and the 2nd amendment abusers ... the guns those fools carry are good for creating mayhem in their own lives but no better than water pistols against the U.S. military.)
Secondly, why would the Europeans governments want to help out?  For the most part countries keep to themselves militarily (the U.S. excepted).

7 I WONDER?
Indeed you might!

Report this

By christian96, August 27, 2009 at 8:54 pm Link to this comment

Things I wonder about:

1.  Have the big money people invested their
money in the Euro?

2.  How long will it be before riots break out
in America?

3.  When the riots break out will they occur
mostly in cities?

4.  Will the Pentagon send troops to try to stop
the rioters?

5.  Will American people be killed by the troops
from the Pentagon?

6.  Will European troops be sent to help the
American people when they are attacked by the
Pentagon?

7 I WONDER?

Report this

By TheHandyman, August 27, 2009 at 6:35 pm Link to this comment

I remember when Ralph Nader said that Obama was just another White Guy in a Blackman’s skin. Everybody screamed that he was a racist. His statement had nothiing to do with race, it was about his mind set. Ralph predicted that Obama would behave this way because by surrounding himself with inside the box thinkers from the Clinton administration he himself showed that while he made much ado about wanting peope who thought different and out side the box he himself also was an inside the bow thinker. What did people think he was going to do. He’s a lawyer and he taught at a Conservative Law school.

I myself, as did many others I’m afraid, had hoped he was wrong. That somehow he would be greater than we or any one else thought he could be. But he is like any other political pole cat who is unable to shed his nature. He is doing what all lawyers do. They curse and fight and use every trick in the book to beat the opponent in a case and when the verdict is in he goes to supper and they laugh about all the theatrics!

Ralph said something that has brought great satisfaction to me because I knew he was the only man for the job. The only one with the experience and dedication to represent the People and not the special interests and the wealthy elite. He said, ” it is better to vote your conscience and loose than it is to vote for the winner and be betrayed. The betrayal is beginning to come at an ever alarming rate. He’s rather play golf with criminals thanbring them to justice. He rather go to Isreal and play nice than bring known war criminals to trial or tenaciously fight for single payer health care. He is just another hack in Ghandi’s clothing!

Report this

By Folktruther, August 27, 2009 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment

Apparently the Dem lemmings, like Purplegirl, will stick with Obama and the Dems no matter what he does.  Time then for another round of The Democratic Song.

    O I’m a Democrat and I’m okay
    I sleep all night and I Hope all day
    I eat their dreck like a crazed boll weevil
    But I stand tall, I’m The Lesser Evil!

Report this

By DBM, August 27, 2009 at 3:13 pm Link to this comment

Night-Gaunt,

Sobering stuff!  I see what you see but I can’t bring myself to think that there is no way out.  There is a terrible nexus of money and power which threatens the well-being of humanity today.  But I suspect that it has always been so.

The Romans had this issue.  So did Feudal Europe.  So did the English Empire (they had the East India Company holding more power over their country than Goldman Sachs, Halliburton and Blackwater combined).  And yet, still The Enlightenment happened.  Still Democracy was reborn after hundreds of years.  Still the lives of many people (in the West at least) have continued to improve materially.

That said there are things which must be resisted.  You reference Higham’s book and I read a few excerpts ... there are a lot of assertions without corroboration or reference (although believable) but there was a phrase in the preface I found interesting:

“Each of these business leaders was entangled with the others through interlocking directorates or financial sources.”

This rings very true.  Why are CEO’s “Pigs at the Trough”? (see Arianna Huffington’s small but important book)  Because they sit on each other’s boards and remuneration committees and grant themselves enormous fortunes.  Somehow the legal structure of corporations has to be addressed.  See the unfortunately titled “Gangs of America” for a good account of the legal history which has led to the immortal amoral pathological corporation and given them legal standing like human beings (albeit outrageously well-funded human beings when it comes to legal matters).

The corporate structure coupled with the dominance of money politics has to be struggled against and changed.  With enough money it has been possible for a bumbling coward to be characterised as an able protector.  It has been possible to characterise a war hero as a manipulative con-man.  It has been possible to represent numerous serial adulterers as defenders of “moral values”.

Through all this, though, I think there are threads of decency and hope.  The humans who run corporations are not all pathological themselves (despite the selection process that puts them in their positions of power).  The power of a few people with truth on their side can oppose noisily promoted lies because there ARE enough people who can’t make sense of the lies. 

So, the targets are clear:

  *  Campaign Finance
  *  Corporate legal structures
  *  Media domination by special interests

With enough progress towards these aims other things will surely follow (reductions in military spending, healthcare reform, ecological sanity).

We can start by doing what Pfaff does in this article.  Expose and shame the politicians who live in the pockets of corporate benefactors.  Work to support those politicians who try to operate outside of the corporate nexus.  The struggle is worthwhile ... it’s the only game in town and what alternative is there anyway?

Report this
Night-Gaunt's avatar

By Night-Gaunt, August 27, 2009 at 8:33 am Link to this comment

so left i am right, August 26 at 4:52 am #

“why the fuck did i let popular influence sway my vote
from Nader to this corporate suck-up? why?”

The power of propaganda and the fact that our two-headed monster of a party is mostly under the control of the worse people in our country. The ones who have been busy gutting our republic while they continue to spend it into bankruptcy to build up a huge military machine which will come after. That is what.

Big Hess the revolution has been going on in an obvious way since 1980. They have been winning. Every president since Reagan has been giving their contributions to the dimunition and evisceration of the republic while constructing a parallel set of organs for the new empire to come. One on the inside as much as the outside. Violence will just accelerate them. They have planned for every contingency and that is one of them. They had tried it before under similar circumstances.

liecatcher, August 26 at 4:25 am #
(“TRADING WITH THE ENEMEMY:THE NAZI-AMERICAN MONEY PLOT1933-1949” by CHARLES HIGHAM), are the same fascist experts who brainwashed & numbed & dumbed out the U.S. populace, and have already enslaved America in a debtor’s…”

FDR should have confiscated all their wealth, had a public trial and if found guilty, should have executed them. None of that happened. He let them off with a warning and fired the man who told him about it.  FDR hadn’t a clue. I blame him for not putting this down for good. That is why we are in the problem today. They learned their lesson, go about bringing down a nation in order to build up another one piece by piece.

You know Mary Ann McNeely that both parties are controlled by the same people. So people for real change in either of the show parties won’t be of any help to us. They will be kept from running. Same with the 3rd parties who are left out of really having a chance to win. A sham democracy we have.

Ocjim
“No doubt Obama is preferable to McCain in all respects, but I certainly expected better for the people from him.”

Obama just seemed “better” but he really isn’t. Its like taking your foul tasting medicine with sugar. Obama is the sugar, McCain would have been the same medicine straight up. Its like putting the same offal in a perfumed box but it is still waste. You just think you got a better deal. You didn’t.

Christian96, it is the republic that is stumbling because it has a parasite that is killing it. Eventually it is going to pupate and out of the withered shell will come forth an imperial monster. Empowered by all the vitality it sucked up and used to build its external empire while starving the interior. I think the libraries will get grief, not any Christian churches. Unless you of the “wrong” version of it.

Just another bit of proof that Obama is a wolf in sheep’s clothing and it is slipping!

Report this

By herewegoagain, August 27, 2009 at 7:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

There really are no words. Here UBS has been in the news for weeks because of the whole Swiss tax evasion issue…and our President is playing golf with their CEO???

Obama’s not even bothering to pretend anymore!

Report this

By bogi666, August 27, 2009 at 3:57 am Link to this comment

ocjim, disappointed but .not surprised

Report this

By DBM, August 26, 2009 at 8:01 pm Link to this comment

Not to add to the pile-on Purple Girl but let’s not forget the whole money cycle here.  The U.S. taxpayer pays large sums to the banks, preferably through AIG so that the banks don’t have to make a pretence of accounting for it.  Then they pocket most of the money at the corporate level, bet the rest on financial “instruments” and use the remainder to lobby, make campaign contributions and put Presidential rounds of golf on the expense tab (you don’t think Wolf ponied up the green fees!??).

That these guys are abetting tax evasion is just the last straw.

Report this

By christian96, August 26, 2009 at 7:23 pm Link to this comment

I don’t want to know who Obama is playing ball with.
I want to know who is REFEREEING the game!  Hold
your hats folks.  Things are going to get real
nasty.  Told you so months ago!  As the American
empire stumbles the European empire rises!  Better
get into a Christian church and hold on.

Report this

By liecatcher, August 26, 2009 at 3:51 pm Link to this comment

To: bogi666, August 26 at 5:25 pm

Hey bogi666:

When you said: “The gullible, ignorant narcissistic-
consumerist-glutton American public is simply
pathetic.”,

I don’t think anyone would argue with that. Sadam
Hussain was murdered for the same

reason that Lincoln & JFK (didn’t want to becomes
slaves to interest payments when the

government could issue it’s own money) were
assassinated, he, Sadam, didn’t want to take fake

FED dollars, he wanted Euros in payment for his oil.
Now China doesn’t want Bernanke bucks either.

And when you said:” American will destroy the USA
faster and nastier than any external imagined
enemy.”,

I’d like to point out that the same fascist cabal
that installed Bush 2 & Bush 3(Obama) in the White
House,also

bankrolled Hitler’s rise to power & financed his
wars with money from American banks

(TRADING WITH THE ENEMEMY:THE NAZI-AMERICAN MONEY
PLOT

1933-1949 by CHARLES HIGHAM), are the same fascist
experts who brainwashed &

numbed & dumbed out the U.S. populace, and have
already enslaved America in a debtor’s

abyss from which there is no escape. And when
Bernanke sent trillions of dollars, with arrogance

& impunity, to the fascist cabal in Europe, that
wasn’t to an imaginary external enemy.

and when you point out that:  “... when the American
public is duped by 10th rate psycho’s

like Beck, Dobbs, O’reilly, Limbaugh ...” , these
psycho’s specialize in brainwashing the

uneducated & undereducated so all bases are covered.

Report this

By ocjim, August 26, 2009 at 2:47 pm Link to this comment

Amy, those are pertinent questions.Quite often politicians, I am sure, convince themselves that they must make deals in order to accomplish reform.

By my way of calculation, getting a 2-3% reduction in health care costs from the fat cats is not a deal. Countries with real health care systems customarily get 40-50% reduction agreements.

No doubt Obama is preferable to McCain in all respects, but I certainly expected better for the people from him.

I must say, I have been bitterly disappointed.

Report this

By Mary Ann McNeely, August 26, 2009 at 2:37 pm Link to this comment

Obama is a liar, a thief, a cheat and a moral nonentity.  In other words, a run-of-the-mill politician.  I am looking forward to his defeat in 2012.

Report this

By NYCartist, August 26, 2009 at 2:30 pm Link to this comment

The corporate presidency.  See http://www.blackagendareport.com

and Paul Street’s Aug.15,2009 article on Znet,
“...Obama and Corporate ‘Punking’ of America”
http://www.zcommunications.org/znet  Really good.

I listen to DemNow daily, have done, since onset.

Report this

By bogi666, August 26, 2009 at 1:35 pm Link to this comment

At least President O’bushama has eliminated any pretenses of where his interests are. We can cut the charade now, liberals and progressives, and talk to truth about who and what runs this country. President O’bushama is presiding over a failed empire which, by definition, is when the wealth of the colonizer, the USA, is extracted to support its colonies of over 800 military and spy installations in over 150 countries.

Report this
racetoinfinity's avatar

By racetoinfinity, August 26, 2009 at 1:17 pm Link to this comment

liecatcher wrote -

“California is just one domino. Too many states are selling off their citizen’s infrastructure to Obama’s fascist friends in order to pay bills.”

States should seriously consider forming their own public banks, like North Dakota has, per Ellen Brown’s recommendations - see her article -

“How California Could Turn Its IOUs Into Dollars” -

http://tinyurl.com/nvgz67

Report this
racetoinfinity's avatar

By racetoinfinity, August 26, 2009 at 12:49 pm Link to this comment

Business as usual for the corporate plutocracy in this country, aided and abetted by neoliberal faux-progressive Obama.

Report this

By Chet Roman, August 26, 2009 at 8:21 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Wolf worked for UBS since 1994, he knew exactly what was going on and should be held accountable; he should not be playing golf with the President.

The U.S. should ban UBS from doing any business in the U.S. until they reveal all 52,000 names. I suspect that Phil Gramm will be the one who screens the 4,450 to ensure the “correct” names are provided. I understand why Switzerland wants to keep the revenue generating policy of secret accounts but I don’t understand why the U.S. should allow them to do business in the U.S. when they facilitate tax evasion.

The whistle-blower gets 40 months in prison while the executives who created and carried out the illegal activity get huge bonuses and are elevated to the status of Presidential advisors. The plutocracy is sending a message through their puppets, the “Justice” Department, that anyone blowing the whistle on the wealthy and connected will be punished.

Report this

By chet roman, August 26, 2009 at 7:53 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Purple Girl
Wolf joined UBS in 1994 and was COO in Jan. 2007. He can and should be blamed for facilitating illegal activities. The U.S. government should ban UBS from any business activity until all, all 52,000 names, are revealed.
By jailing the whistle-blower to 40 months in jail the “Justice Department” (the wealthy elite’s puppets) are sending a message to other potential whistle-blowers. The bank executives that condoned this practice continue to get huge bonuses while the whistle-blower goes to jail. That is American Justice! And Obama endorses this by playing golf with the Chief Crook! Slease we can believe in.

Report this

By Donald Diedrick, August 26, 2009 at 7:52 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Purple Girl-Aug.26 816AM/Of course this is some positive start,but 52000 possible accounts of illegal tax evaders remains outstanding.While many honestly support their Country,these cheats increase the tax burden on the rest of us.Further investigation is certainly justified-regardless of diplomatic niceties.Terminating all Corporate financial influence to our Congress is required,to begin to renew trust in those we elect!

Report this

By ro1942, August 26, 2009 at 7:47 am Link to this comment

big jess, couldn’t agree more, the oligarchy got just what it needed with obama, a perfect spokes-man.

Report this

By MeHere, August 26, 2009 at 7:19 am Link to this comment

To so left I am right:

Please don’t sweat over this.  The main thing is you are aware of what’s going on and you are thinking!  You will have plenty of opportunity to vote for Nader or some other political group…hopefully.  The way I see it, the troubling issue of
how and what we vote for is in its infancy yet.  Just find and support stuff _you_ can believe in, as opposed to stuff that will merely win a corrupt election. And keep an open mind.

Report this
RAE's avatar

By RAE, August 26, 2009 at 5:07 am Link to this comment

“UBS will be sending account holders notification that their names may be among those delivered to the IRS, and the IRS, in turn, is granting leniency to tax dodgers who turn themselves in before Sept. 23. Account holders won’t know if their names are included, though, so gamblers among them may keep quiet and hope their accounts stay secret.”

It’s just one big cat and mouse game, isn’t it? The filthy rich conniving and colluding, legally and illegally, to hide and maintain their often ill-gotten gains while the government’s “cats” lurk in the shadows waiting for a chance to pounce.

Well, they don’t actually “wait” - they are rather pro-active with actions that amount to threats and intimidation - legal and illegal - in order to get their hands on money that DOESN’T BELONG TO THEM EITHER!

Extortion and lies and sneaking around ON BOTH SIDES seems to be considered “business as usual.”

Don’t you just love the hypocrisy of what we say contrasted with what we do - can’t you just hear all those “teachers” in schools all over America haranging kids about “playing fair” - always tell the truth - be a team player, etc., etc?

Then the kids turn on the TV and watch THEIR COMMUNITY AND GOVERNMENT LEADERS doing what they do best - MISINFORM, LIE, CHEAT, STEAL and essentially ASSAULT and ABUSE citizens, both rich and poor.

I submit that if the government played fair almost all American citizens would too. But it doesn’t take long for the players to learn that “nice guys finish last” and that the name of the game is really to CHEAT AS MUCH AS YOU CAN WITHOUT GETTING CAUGHT.

After we’ve been screwed around and lied to for so long by those we trusted to look after our best interests it’s no wonder so many take to using the same tactics as the government in order to protect themselves and their assets.

I do not for a minute condone those participating in the economic rape of America but I sure understand why they do it and where they’re coming from. I also do not think this damage is reversible - it’s like trust - once lost almost never fully recovered. So sad.

Report this

By keepyourheaddown, August 26, 2009 at 4:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

CROOKS AND LIARS!!!

Report this
Purple Girl's avatar

By Purple Girl, August 26, 2009 at 4:16 am Link to this comment

Your article seems to indicate more the positive moves towards legitmacy than criminality by this new UBS CEO.
Let’s see huge settlements have been awarded, Criminals prosecuted and tax evaders exposed.
So what’s your point- Wolf should be cruxified because of the ‘sins’ of his predecessors.
That’s like holding Obama respsonsible for the Economic meltdown, or 2 Wars, or global warming.
come On Amy your accusation not only defies logic,but the time/space continium

Report this

By bluelori, August 26, 2009 at 3:13 am Link to this comment

Change morons can believe in

http://www.propublica.org/ion/stimulus/item/stimulus-transparency-
watchdogs-keep-contract-details-a-secret-813

Report this

By C.Curtis.Dillon, August 26, 2009 at 1:13 am Link to this comment

The last, best hope for change has shown us his real stripes unfortunately.  He is more comfortable with those of wealth and influence than he is with us “normal” folk.  But we are ourselves to blame for what has happened.  Far too long have we sat by our TV screens and let those in power decide our fate.  While we were languishing, they sold our future to the greed and self-interested on Wall Street and elsewhere.  We forget that tyranny always lurks in the shadows.  Our freedom is not a given but we assumed it was.  Our rights are not sacred and can be taken from us by executive order or by a new law.  Only by standing up and demanding our rightful place in this country will we ever have a chance of achieving equality and freedom.  The battle must begin soon or it will be too late.  And failure relegates us to slavery again ...

Report this
knobcreekfarmer's avatar

By knobcreekfarmer, August 26, 2009 at 12:52 am Link to this comment

why the fuck did i let popular influence sway my vote
from Nader to this corporate suck-up? why?

Report this

By liecatcher, August 26, 2009 at 12:25 am Link to this comment

Who Is Obama Playing Ball With?  By Amy Goodman
Posted on Aug 25, 2009

And the answer is: THE MASTERS OF THE UNIVERSE

The important thing to remember is that what he does
is more important & revealing

than what he says. By pursuing perpetual wars with

record MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX budgets while the U.S economy is in the toilet speaks volumes.

Obama is Bush 3.

I found it very ironic that Truthdig also has an
excellent article:

“There Are More Slaves Today Than at Any Time in
History”


Obama, a lapdog for WALL STREET AKA the FED has
resulted in the

enslavement of countless millions of people who have
lost their homes, jobs,

life savings . Some are living in tents subsisting on
food handouts. Some

have turned to prostitution to get by . Obama has
given Bernanke carte

blanche & pushed America into a debtor’s abyss from
which their is no escape.

California is just one domino. Too many states are
selling off their citizen’s

infrastructure to Obama’s fascist friends in order to
pay bills. Government Sachs

is a primary broker in handling the states bankruptcy
sales.

Report this

By christian96, August 25, 2009 at 11:00 pm Link to this comment

Before the election Obama promised to eliminate
income tax on social security for anyone making
less than $50,000 a year.  I’m still waiting.  If
he was serious about stimulating the economy he
would eliminate ALL TAXES for people making less
than $50,000 a year.  I see Amy made reference to
Hermes the Greek God of thieves and merchants.  The
Christian God of lying self-centered deceptive
merchants is Satan.

Report this

By Big Jess, August 25, 2009 at 10:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Why are people surprised?

By now it should be clear that Obama is an amoral, principle-free fraud, a phony, a shill, and a captive of the wealthy special interests that control both wings of the property party.

The U.S. has only two chances to save the republic:

- A GENUINE progressive reformer who can challenge Obama and WIN both the primary and the general election in 2012.

- Actual revolution of some sort.

Report this
LostHills's avatar

By LostHills, August 25, 2009 at 8:36 pm Link to this comment

Thieves and merchants….

Report this
 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
Right Internal Skyscraper, Site wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 

Like Truthdig on Facebook