Quote of the day: Racketeering

image MajGen. Smedley Butler small Due to recent events last week when the US government has put up all government property and the (work of the) next two generations of American citizens as collateral to bail out a few thousand “bad apples” within the financial world, we thought the quote from MajGen. Smedley Butler below might also be a good fit for that.

Those guys in the financial world who now try to make others believe that they did not know the dangers and that they did not know that they were trading worthless paper for money just like before the great depression, have always put their greed, their profiteering and racking in other peoples money above everything and anybody else.

We are not talking about the simple employees who are bound by the directives given by their superiors, we are talking about the large investors, hedge funds, the directors and other key stakeholder that have set the framework for these actions.

Society must now hold these people responsible and not let them again define how this will go on in the future.

But they are sitting on hundreds of million of bonuses for their great work while their victims lost their houses, their lifetime savings, their pensions or families. Think about it when you next time see an old man of 80 cleaning up in a diner or supermarket.

One of Smedley Butler’s most widely quoted statement:
“…I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers.

In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.

I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested.

Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents….”

More information:
Wikipedia on Smedley Butler

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