Panama Papers: Ex-Venezuelan banker revealed as offshore corrupto

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Who’s this guy, with the Melania Knauss lookalike? Oh, just one of the handful of Venezuelans who appear in the Panama Papers, with alleged ties to the government of Hugo Chávez. But, as the following report (by La Iguana TV, via Aporrea) reveals, his actual political ties are to the rabid opposition COPEI and Primero Justicia parties. Which makes it clear why he’s no longer living in Venezuela, and why he’s likely to soon be wanted for questioning by the judicial authorities of that land…

On February 11, 2016, the story of the Industrial Bank of Venezuela (BIV) ended. A resolution by the Superintendency of Institutions of the Banking Sector (SUDEBAN) was the final act for a financial institution born in 1937.

“Approving the anticipated dissolution of the Industrial Bank of Venezuela, C.A., and the cessation of operations and activities of financial intermediation and, in consequence, the beginning of the process of administrative liquidation,” reads Article 1 of the measure, contained in the Official Gazette, no. 40,846.

But the end of the BIV had been written long before. In 2011, the General Comptroller of the Republic (CGR) recommended terminating the “process of intervention” to which the bank had been subject since 2009. The Comptroller advised its “liquidation” to “preserve the interests of the Republic, the stability of the financial system, as well as the rights of savers, depositors, clients and creditors in light of the fact that the bank presented serious problems in terms of economic order, financial order, and budgetary planning during the years 2007 and 2008.”

Millions in losses, interventions and financial rescues by the government every so often were constants for the bank. To the red ink was added poor administration and constant rotation in the BIV’s directorship. In the first eight years of the government of Hugo Chávez, there were eight presidents.

One of them was Leonardo González Dellán, who, according to the Panama Papers of the firm Mossack Fonseca, is a beneficiary of various companies in fiscal paradises. González Dellán was designated by Chávez to direct the BIV in 2002, and was in office until 2004, when he was relieved by Arné Chacón, brother of former minister Jesse Chacón, who was arrested in 2009 in relation to the financial crisis of that year.

The Mossack Fonseca documents, which the German newspaper, the Süddeutsche Zeitung of Munich, received from an anonymous source and which were reviewed by a team of more than 370 journalists all over the world under the co-ordination of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), found that González Dellán was linked to offshore corporations ever since his time at the head of the BIV.

An e-mail between executives of the Panamanian company, dated April 4, 2013, left no doubts about the client. “There is a document before the Supreme Tribunal of Justice in Venezuela, in which Mr. Leonardo González Dellán figures as representative of the Industrial Bank of Venezuela (BIV). In this document his complete name appears, and his personal identification number, which exactly coincides with the document of our director,” reads the e-mail. It also states that “there could also be found the contact which Mr. Leonardo González Dellán had with Hugo Chávez.”

The first e-mails relating to González Dellán date back to 2010, but the papers of the corporations reveal that he was linked to a company, whose registering agent was Mossack Fonseca, since 2003.

They concern one Blue Crest Holdings, S.A., a company registered in Panama on August 20, 2003. “The authorized capital of the corporation is $10,000 US, legal tender of the United States of America, divided in 100 shares which may be nominative or of the bearer, of a nominal value of $100 US each. The board of directors may permit that the certificates of the bearer be exchanged for certificates in the name of the owner and vice versa”, reads the founding social pact of the company.

On August 21, 2003, four certificates were issued, equivalent to one share each. A fifth certificate for 100 shares was issued to Leonardo González Dellán on July 23, 2014. But the relationship of the former head of the BIV with Blue Crest Holdings S.A. doesn’t end there.

On October 20, 2003, the directors of Blue Crest Holdings S.A., persons assigned by Mossack Fonseca to that end, met in conference in order to “administer the society with no limits whatsoever” to José Ángel González Dellán, brother of the former president of the BIV, and who, according to the National Register of Contractors (RNC), is president of Colosal XX Co-operative Association, R.L., a company which has provided services to the Venezuelan national oil company PDVSA — varied services such as “supplying meals”, “construction and remodeling of offices”, and “construction of highways and traffic signage”, among others.

That same day, October 20, a certificate was also issued to Luis Alberto Benshimol, an investment advisor who was linked to various trading firms such as Lemon Casa de Bolsa, in 2003, and later to Bencorp Casa de Bolsa C.A., one of several bailed out by the National Stocks Commission in 2010, after then-minister Jorge Giordani decided to do away with the sector.

As of July 21, 2005, Leonardo González Dellán had the power to administer Blue Crest Holdings S.A., without limitations.

González Dellán’s term at the head of the BIV coincides with the birth of the control of the stock exchange, decreed by Chávez in February 2003, and still in force, as well as the origin of the now-defunct Commission of the Administration of Currency (CADIVI). Several items in El Universal, published between 2003 and 2004, reveal the BIV’s participation at the time.

On December 31, 2002, in the midst of the so-called “Paro Petrolero” (“oil strike”), Jesús Rodolfo Bermúdez, who was vice-minister of finance at the time, went to the BIV to open trusteeships in the name of the Republic: One for $1.5 billion US, via a promissory note of 18 months at 14.5%, another for 700 million bolivars, and a third for $1.413 million.

According to the information at the time, the Ministry of Finance used this means to cancel payment agreements to public organisms and private companies, but “the promissory notes ended up fueling the parallel currency market”, according to El Universal on July 18, 2004. “In other cases, the companies demanded of their clients, principally banks and stock exchanges, that they cancel their notes at 100% of face value, so that the financial institutions would acquire by this means dollars for 1,600 bolivars each, exactly the price which the Executive delivered to the priority sectors of the economy in 2003,” the item adds.

In 2007, the newspaper El Nacional published an item on the administration of the BIV during the Chávez government, in which the path of González Dellán is traced through the institution thus: “Leonardo González Dellán, linked to [the conservative party] COPEI, was named as president of the BIV in November 2002, but left in July 2004. At the time, the arrears had reached 49%.”

In the book “The Great Robbery”, by Carlos Tablante and Marcos Tarre, Leonardo González Dellán is identified as one of the financial “operators” who enriched himself during the Chávez government via dealings in stocks and transactions which allowed him to take advantage of the “exchange rate differential”.

Leonardo González Dellán, son of the former COPEI senator Eudoro González and brother of current [right-wing] Primero Justicia deputy Eudoro González, met Chávez at the beginning of his reign, and ended up forming part of his government. The Mossack Fonseca papers confirm that the relationship between González and the firm, and companies in fiscal paradises, does not end with Blue Crest Holdings. In December of 2010, representatives of J.A. Fernández and Associates, another Panamanian legal firm, representing the ex-president of the BIV, contacted Mossack Fonseca to solicit information over their availability to “reserve” some companies.

“Regarding the aforementioned company, we confirm that the only shareholder is Mr. Leonardo González Dellán, for which reason we request that you draw up a stock certificate for the totality of capital, to be made out to Mr. González Dellán,” reads one e-mail dated December 7, 2010, sent from J.A. Fernández and Associates to the executives of Mossack Fonseca.

The company in question was Rodsal Company Limited, registered by Mossack Fonseca on August 5, 2010, in the British Virgin Islands. “The company is authorized to issue a maximum of 50,000 shares, without nominal value, in the same share class,” reads the company register, whose shareholder up to July 2013 was Leonardo González Dellán. Before that, there had been a change of directors, and finally a certificate for 50,000 shares was issued to Weltrust, a Swiss company, whose registering agent was Python & Peter, until the company was dissolved in November 2015.

The Mossack Fonseca documents prove that the former president of the BIV also acquired, in July 2011, the Gran Rex Alliance company, registered in Panama on May 11, 201, with an authorized capital of $10,000, divided into 10,000 shares of one dollar each. In this case, the papers show that the Uruguayan firm, Estudio Posadas & Vecino Consultores Internacionales, passed along to Mossack Fonseca all the documentation related to the origins of the company.

It was not possible for us to contact González Dellán for this article. However, sources consulted indicated that he is living in Europe. In 2012, the gossip columns widely published news of his wedding in Las Vegas, USA, to former Miss Venezuela and model Aida Yéspica. Information refers to the ex-president of the BIV as a “Venezuelan lawyer”, without further references, but as the photos showed, as well as others divulged by his spouse on social media, they appeared to be enjoying such paradises as St. Tropez, the Balearic Islands [of Spain], and Sicily.

Translation mine. Links added.

It’s worth noting that the lovely Ms. Yéspica is no longer married to him. Apparently there were irreconcilable differences (allegedly, in the shape of Turkish-German soccer star Mesut Özil, among others). The marriage only lasted a year. Womp, womp.

But hey! At least Leonardo still has all those ill-gotten millions to keep him warm, right?

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At least, until the federales and Interpol catch up to him. In which case he might want to start literally burning those old papers. Ha, ha.

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Posted in A Man, A Plan, A Canal, Economics for Dummies, Fascism Without Swastikas, Filthy Stinking Rich, Huguito Chavecito, Isn't It Ironic?, Isn't That Illegal?, Merry Old England, Paraguay, Uruguay, Schadenfreude, The United States of Amnesia, Under the Name of Spain | Comments Off on Panama Papers: Ex-Venezuelan banker revealed as offshore corrupto

Drug smuggling: Venezuela’s latest problem

Eduardo Samán (in red shirt) drops a bombshell on VTV.

So, you think Venezuela has always had a drug smuggling problem, and that it’s cocaine, marijuana, and other street drugs, being exported overseas with Venezuela as a trans-shipment point? Au contraire, mon frère. The latest drug-smuggling problem in Venezuela isn’t coke, and indeed it’s not about silly gringos getting high on whatever they can shove up their foolish noses. Nor are the drugs coming into Venezuela from Colombia, as you might have expected. No, these drugs are legit pharmaceuticals, produced domestically from imported materials, being smuggled out of Venezuela across the Colombian border for profit. And a former government minister and head of a federal agency has denounced the problem on national TV:

According to former minister of commerce and president of INDEPABIS, Eduardo Samán, medicaments produced in Venezuela and imported with preferential dollars are being smuggled out via Maracaibo.

“They’re taking them out and they’re not just mafias. It’s somebody who managed to buy a certain number of medicaments in a pharmacy, knowing that taking them across the border could make a big profit. This has to be looked into,” said Samán, on the VTV program “En Tres y Dos”.

For Samán, it’s important that we be able to “rescue an industry which we know has a structural problem, which is the dependence on primary materials which are imported, depending on dollars, and we have a difficulty due to the drop in oil prices.”

He emphasized that “there is a great dependence on things [imported] from abroad, it’s a great opportunity to begin substituting things, because people are always looking for substitutes. There are a number of primary materials which could come from plants, from medicinal plant extracts, cultivating plants.”

Translation mine.

What Eduardo Samán is talking about is growing primary materials in Venezuela, rather than importing them from abroad only to watch the final product disappear across the Colombian border in a smuggler’s pack.

And who are the smugglers? Possibly just ordinary Venezuelans lacking a better paying job; but a more likely candidate is an organized crime ring with ties to the political right-wing, whose objective is to unseat the Maduro government with political destabilization caused by shortages of basic goods…such as, say, badly needed pharmaceuticals. And they’ve been at that game for as long as Venezuela has had progressive leaders…starting with Chavecito.

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Posted in Drugs, Economics for Dummies, Huguito Chavecito, Isn't That Illegal?, Morticia! You Spoke French!, Not So Compassionate Conservatism, Socialism is Good for Capitalism! | Comments Off on Drug smuggling: Venezuela’s latest problem

Politicize the Fort Mac fire? Yes, PLEASE.

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Alanis Obomsawin, more relevant now than ever.

So, I hear all kinds of rumblings to the effect that we “shouldn’t politicize” the forest fires in and around Fort McMurray, Alberta. That it’s “insensitive” to the people of the town, who have been forced to scatter in whichever way the wind wasn’t blowing. That it’s “not the right time” to talk about petrochemical pollution, man-made global warming, climate change, and yadda yadda. That it smacks of I-told-you-so. That environmentalists shouldn’t be smug, or claim this is in any way “karma”. That it’s not helping. That they’re not helping. Et cetera, et cetera, ad nauseam.

I also hear the same lip-flap from the chattering classes in the US every time there’s another mass shooting. It’s never the right time to talk about gun violence there, even when it’s taken yet another dozen victims in the space of an hour. And of course, it’s never the right time to talk about gun control, because the precious, sacred Second Amendment, and blah blah blabbity blah blah.

Same shit, different outhouse. And yet the assholes generating it are all the same. They’re the right wing noise machine, and they’re politicizing tragedy all the time, while vehemently denying their opponents the right to do the same. And while they’re busy babbling, nothing useful gets done. Nothing that would help to prevent more tragedies of the same kind. And certainly nothing that would draw the appropriate connections between cause and effect.

Of course these same right-wing babblers are more than happy to talk about their “thoughts and prayers”, or what heroes the first responders are. They’re always so quick to claim the high ground, and shove off anyone who doesn’t mouth the same pious platitudes, from the same page of the same dusty hymnal. They’ll even laud the efforts of the charitable, while slamming the federal and provincial governments (Liberal and NDP, respectively) for “not being there”. Never mind that Rachel Notley, like the fire crews at Fort Mac, has been running on too little sleep, and has even missed much of her family’s Mother’s Day plans. Never mind that Ottawa is matching donations to the Red Cross, and Justin Trudeau, in contrast to his predecessor, has wisely avoided photo ops because he doesn’t want to interrupt the firefighters’ work. No, the babblers must babble, or else we might start talking about them and how they contributed to the tragedy that is currently unfolding.

So. Let’s talk about them, shall we?

Let’s talk about how their stupid old Cold War mindset is keeping the Russians from helping us with the largest cargo planes (modified into water bombers!) in the world.

Let’s talk about how knee-jerk conservatism is fueling this fire by way of climate-change denial (which is idiotic at the best of times, and downright tragic now).

Let’s talk about how their short-sighted oilpatch politics and pipeline boosterism have made the tar sands an open sore, and a downright flammable one.

Let’s talk about how their boomtown mentality doesn’t allow leeway for oil busts…or disastrous wildfires.

And let’s acknowledge that Rachel Notley, despite her detractors’ incessant naysaying over the past year, has proved more than competent, and that Alberta is doing better, not worse, under her rule. And that if Ralph Klein were still alive, he’d be drunkenly waltzing into an evacuee shelter flinging money around and telling the displaced people to get jobs.

Let’s also acknowledge that while he’s not out there gladhanding the busy firefighters, Justin Trudeau is also not hiding in a broom closet while his MPs are improvising spears made out of flagpoles.

Let’s acknowledge that we can politicize what’s going on in Fort Mac without harming the people who’ve had to flee their homes. That politicizing this fire is what could save the town from another such catastrophe when this one is over.

And above all, let’s acknowledge that it’s stupid to refrain from making a catastrophe a political issue. When the Montréal Massacre happened, it was promptly “politicized” for the public good, and the long-gun registry was the result. No one but a minority of gun-obsessed ideologues thought it was a good idea to let senseless deaths keep piling up because “politicizing” a tragedy and rewriting the law was so tacky and mean and insensitive to the victims. “Politicizing” tragedies is how we prevent further ones in the future.

And there is nothing shameful about that.

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Posted in Barreling Right Along, Canadian Counterpunch, Crapagandarati, Do As I Say..., Environmentally Ill, Fascism Without Swastikas, Guns, Guns, Guns, If You REALLY Care, Isn't It Ironic?, Law-Law Land, Newspeak is Nospeak, Not So Compassionate Conservatism, Socialism is Good for Capitalism!, Teh Injunz, Uppity Wimmin | Comments Off on Politicize the Fort Mac fire? Yes, PLEASE.

Happy Mother’s Day, you nasty badasses…

…from the most nasty-badass mama and precious baby (and the queeniest narrator!) of all time:

“And the honey badger’s daddy REALLY doesn’t give a shit.”

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Music for a Sunday: I miss the people, I miss the fun

…you’re my apparition:

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Wankers of the Week: Der Drumpf’s Taco Bowl of Shame

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Crappy weekend, everyone! That roiling in your gut? Must be all the undigested (and indigestible) news you’ve swallowed this week. The junk-food peddlers of politics and media have been working overtime to bring the crud de la crud straight from the teevee to your table. And this week, they’ve served up the following gristly lumps:

1. Marco Fucking Rubio. Yes, this was last week…but he wanked so hard, it blew right into THIS week. And I’m sure that sanctioning Venezuela economically when things are already bad there (due in part to your Saudi buddies fucking with oil supplies and prices, and partly due to local putschist price gougers, and otherwise to El Niño) is gonna help them a LOT. Mostly in alerting them to who their friends ain’t. And in making them damn glad you dropped out of the presidential race. Now, if only the voters would fire your ass, that would be great.

2. Ted Fucking Cruz. Pro tip: Never argue the merits of capitalist medicine with a disabled person. Chances are they’ve been screwed nine ways till Friday by it already, and they really don’t want or need to hear how you’re gonna make it even worse. PS: And bye! Tell your dad his gift for prophecy is a dud. And apologize to your wife, if you haven’t already. (For everything, including what the Drumpf-bots have done to her.) PPS: Ha, ha.

3. Daryush Fucking Valizadeh. Nothing in the world could be funnier than a sleazeball who spent years sexually coercing women (and writing how-to manuals on the subject for other sleazeballs) suddenly deciding to get off the lady-carousel and settle down, only to find that there’s no one out there dumb enough to settle for him. Unless, of course, it’s said sleazeball now living in Mom’s basement and making his meagre boodle bemoaning how “central bankers” and Big Daddy Gummint have somehow led all these women to inexplicably think they’re too good for him, or that they’d rather be working even a shit job than hitch their wagon to his unwashed ass.

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4. Sandy Fucking Rios. Well, looky here. Right-wing thugs, MEN, are being told to insert themselves in women’s washrooms and fitting rooms at Target stores. And who’s behind it? This woman. Guess the concept of sisters-before-misters just isn’t for her, eh? And neither is protecting the safety of women from, you know, MEN BARGING IN ON THEM.

5. Michael Lloyd Fucking Merichko. And speaking of which, here’s one of them right now. And he was dumb enough to initially let people think he was armed. Aaaaand now he’s busted, so guess who’s a liar? Yup, #4.

6. Andrea Fucking Hardie. Finally, after months of Twitter abuse, homophobia, racism and misogyny, this professional troll is off the tweeter…at least until she finds a new eggy identity to go by. I’m sure everyone’s just waiting with bated breath.

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7. Bill Fucking Donohue. Yeah, there’s a hidden agenda in the New York state bill to remove the statute of limitations from child sex abuse cases. But it has nothing to do with “persecuting Catholics”, and everything to do with prosecuting offenders. If some of those happen to be Catholic and dressed in priestly garb, so be it. But they’re hardly the only ones, and only an idiot would argue otherwise.

8. Karl Fucking Oliver. It’s “I couldn’t care less”, not “I could care less”. And really: If you couldn’t care less about your constituents, whose taxes pay your salary, why are you even IN politics? Why not just go shovel shit on a farm? At least then, you’d be making yourself somewhat useful.

9. Sarah Fucking Palin. Yeah, there’s a “Climate Hustle” going on, all right. And the hustlers are those who insist that there is no climate change going on at all, and what there is, is not man-made. They don’t give a damn for science, or for the salient fact that 97% of all experts is one helluva consensus. In short: The hustlers are YOU. PS: And no, you do not get to redefine what “smart” means, either. Even if you DO have 97% of wanking idiots backing YOU up.

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10. Cole Fucking Bartiromo. Oh surprise! A convicted felon, blackmailer and scamster, who robbed his own parents blind, prominent among Drumpf supporters at a Drumpf rally, trying to frame the anti-Drumpf protesters as the dangerous ones? And right before it happened, on his own Facebook page, he talked trash about how he planned to get them “on their knees”? I’ll bet he bloodied his own nose. At this rate, nothing about that ilk would surprise me anymore.

11. Vaughn Fucking Ohlman. Having breasts signals “readiness to be married”? Good thing this creepy pervert isn’t MY father, because that would mean I would have been married off to some complete stranger at 12, tops. That’s when I had hips, boobs, and periods…all of which are supposed to be “signs” of nubility. And this while I was still playing with Barbie dolls. Ugh. PS: Well, look who just got kicked to the curb by the Homophobic Army. This has got to be a first!

12. Tila Fucking Hubrecht. Tila, Tila…lay off the tequila. Because when you start talking of unwanted pregancy as the “silver lining” of rape, you’re obviously drunk. Go home and sleep it the fuck OFF, lady!

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13. Donald Fucking Drumpf. So, all you morons supporting this guy think he says just what he means? And that it’s so refreshing that he’s not constrained by “political correctness”, whatever the hell THAT is? Well, then…explain to me what he means with that nonsensical word salad he spun about women needing to be “punished” for having abortions. Can’t do it? I’m not surprised. PS: Oh no he didn’t! Oh yes, he DID.

14. David Fucking Duke. On the other hand, there’s no mistaking what #14’s chief endorser means by what he says. And that is just unequivocally antisemitic…and AWFUL.

15. Woody Fucking Allen. And while we’re on the subject of unequivocally awful, get a load of what he says about his current wife…whom he molested while still with his previous partner, whose adopted daughter she is. He’s all self-congratulatory about what a great life he’s given her, never mind that Mia Farrow is the one who actually took her in and gave her that in the first place. And when asked how she changed him, all he can say is that she’s given him “pleasure”. Yeah, I’ll just bet. (And on that note: BARF.)

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16. Bob Fucking Paulson. Pro tip, chief: If you don’t want the Mounties to get a “bad rap”, don’t let a culture of sexual assault and male entitlement flourish, goddammit. Fucking DO something about it, and by that, I don’t mean sweep it under the rug as usual. Otherwise, you’ll get a bad reputation…and you’ll have EARNED it.

17. Ayelet Fucking Shaked. Meanwhile, speaking of sweeping shit under rugs, Israel’s resident anti-Palestinian hatemonger is at it again. And just as #16 would have us refrain from rightly criticizing the Mounties, she would have us refrain from rightly criticizing Israel. Nuh-unh, sweetie…no fucking dice. If you call Palestinians vermin, you WILL be called out. And if you copy the murderous policies of Nazi Germany and Apartheid South Africa, you will DESERVE that calling-out.

18. Kenneth Fucking Shupe. Isn’t it illegal to refuse to tow someone just because their car has a bumper sticker you don’t like? If not, it should be. And at the very least, it’s also uncharitable and un-Christian. Better call Jesus next time you get in trouble with the Better Business Bureau.

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19. Robert Fucking Lantos. Way to conflate Zionism with Judaism, dude. And way to make yourself totally irrelevant.

20. Steven Fucking Van Zant. And once more, with feeling: Dude, apartheid is still apartheid when Israel’s government does it. If you could boycott Sun City all those years ago, you can do BDS now. Listen to Desmond Tutu, he KNOWS. And if you won’t listen to him, then listen to this Israeli general, who is pretty damn hard to ignore.

21. Odalis Fucking Sharp. Would it surprise you greatly to know that a religiously-deranged woman who brought her kids to Oregon to sing for the assholes who trashed a bird sanctuary is also the kind of person who thinks it’s her biblical right to abuse them and beat them to a bloody pulp? No? Oh good, me neither. And even better: Her poor kids finally got sick of her shit, and are now on their way out of her clutches. Permanently, one hopes.

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22. Michael Fucking Weiner. Yes, the Savage Weiner is wanking again. Did he ever stop? Nope. But now he’s gone full white supremacist, accusing Obama of “white genocide”. Someone please remind him that since he’s a Jew, the audience he’s aiming his bullshit-cannon at doesn’t consider him to be truly white, either.

23. Martha Fucking MacCallum. And speaking of full white supremacist, how about her? She’s pissy that she doesn’t get to call people the n-word. And of course, she thinks THAT’s racist, but not the word itself. Well, Martha, if you look up moron in the dictionary, you just might find a graphic description of yourself.

24. Tim Fucking Moore. Because a bigoted bathroom bill isn’t chutzpah enough on its own, now you get a snippy speaker of the statehouse, too! Enjoy your boycott and all those lost billions, asshole.

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25. Shmuley Fucking Boteach. Schmuck endorses schmuck. Quel surprise! Now, the only question remaining: How is it “Kosher Sex” to have two failed marriages under one’s belt, plus an unprosecuted marital rape, PLUS Bog only knows how much sexual harassment?

26. Sheldon Fucking Adelson. Same as above, with a side order of casino crapitalist cronyism. Lather, rinse, repeat.

27. Joe Fucking Oliver. Uh, dude? Stephen Fucking Harper is out of the PMO. You’re no longer a cabinet minister. You’re just another MP now. And your party lost in a landslide. You can sit down. You can shut up. Please, PLEASE sit down and shut the fuck up!

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28. Neil Fucking Cavuto. No, a ticky-tacky “taco bowl” is NOT an olive branch to Mexico. What would be one? Try a humble “I hereby take back everything ugly I said about Mexicans, and there will be no wall built at anyone’s expense.” Much simpler than posing for an idiotic publicity shot with a Yanqui food embarrassment that no Mexican would ever eat, no?

29. Cheryl Fucking Gallant. Is helmet hair impervious to everything, even good sense? In her case, apparently, it is. No, we don’t have Stealth bombers here. And what the hell would this twit want to deploy them for even if we did? We aren’t, or shouldn’t be, at war with anyone. Once more, as with #27, with feeling: Stephen Fucking Harper is out of the PMO. You’re no longer a cabinet minster. You’re just another MP now. And your party lost in a landslide. Sit down, and STFU!

30. Rick Fucking Perry. Oh yay, Crotch Goodhair has piped up again! And now he wants to be Der Drumpf’s running mate! Isn’t that a hoot coming from someone who dissed Der Drumpf not so long ago?

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And finally, to the fucking Repugs of North Carolina. Yes, all of you. You wanted a law to make LGBT people’s lives miserable, and public toilets inaccessible? Guess what: Your law is illegal. No use whining about it…repeal that motherfucker so your state can breathe again. Or don’t…and watch your miseries (both legal and financial) just keep piling up. Your choice! Ha, ha.

Good night, and get fucked!

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Rape culture, en français…

Seen on Facebook, on a friend’s wall:

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“For me, rape is something women invented. As soon as a man gets urges, a woman should let him do it.”

And the responses, on the right, respectively:

“Rape isn’t anything serious, as long as the person who rapes the woman is having fun, there’s nothing wrong with that.”

“If a woman really doesn’t want rape to happen, she would avoid short skirts and low necklines. Don’t forget the man’s instinct.”

“They play with our urges, they simply deserve it to happen to them, and a little anal in addition won’t hurt them.”

But of course, there is no rape culture anywhere. Pas du tout!

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Posted in Men Who Just Don't Get It, Morticia! You Spoke French!, Sick Frickin' Bastards, Teh Heterostoopid, The Hardcore Stupid, Uppity Wimmin | Comments Off on Rape culture, en français…

Venezuela: 11 drugstores raided in anti-hoarding operation

Video of a federal sting operation in Venezuela against some rather unusual, yet typical contraband dealers in the region. They’re not dealing in cocaine, marijuana, or other illegal drugs, but rather in basic necessities sold in pharmacies. They’re mafias of bachaquerosa uniquely Venezuelan brand of organized criminals who divert staple goods from store shelves, hoard them, then sell them (typically on the black market) at inflated prices to create economic chaos in the land. They’re tied to the right-wing opposition, and strangely make exceptions in their pricing for rich right-wing cronies — in short, the very people who can best afford to buy those goods at any price. Meanwhile, ordinary Venezuelans are being forced to either pay grossly inflated prices for these basic goods, or do without.

The idea of the whole shoddy business? To turn ordinary Venezuelans against the Maduro PSUV government, which is incidentally the only party actually dedicated to fighting this corruption and chaos. And while bachaqueo is meant to shore up support for the rabid fascists of the opposition, it ends up having the opposite effect, as this news item (via Aporrea) makes clear:

Last Tuesday, the Superintendency of Just Pricing (SUNDDE) conducted a special operation against establishments of the Farmatodo chain in response to denunciations made by several users, who stated that basic products were being diverted from those stores in the dead of night.

Superintendent William Contreras explained that his office had received denunciations of products being diverted to be distributed to “bachaqueros”.

The operation was conducted during the night at 11 locations of the drugstore chain, since that was the time at which the stores received merchandise from head office.

More than 120 persons participated in the operation, among them SUNDDE inspectors, the Public Ministry, and officers of the Bolivarian National Guard.

Translation mine.

Yes, that’s right…the evil socialist government of Venezuela has a special unit devoted to ensuring that people don’t get ripped off by retailers! And even more shocking, ordinary Venezuelans use that unit, lodging complaints against ripoff artists — and they get satisfactory responses! Whatever will they think of next, down there? At this rate, they won’t even need the US of Amnesia and its federal agencies to invade — oh sorry, “police” — them!

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Posted in Economics for Dummies, Fascism Without Swastikas, Filthy Stinking Rich, Free Trade, My Ass!, Huguito Chavecito, Isn't It Ironic?, Isn't That Illegal?, Law-Law Land | Comments Off on Venezuela: 11 drugstores raided in anti-hoarding operation

Music for a Sunday: Passion, play your part…

Happy May Day to all the workers, past and present, of fire and steel…

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Posted in Music for a Sunday | Comments Off on Music for a Sunday: Passion, play your part…

Happy Walpurgisnacht!

follow-your-leader

Just a note to all you “folkish” pagan types trying to winkle right-wing beliefs into the Old Religions out there: If you want to know what the Old Gods REALLY thought of making fascist nationalism a kind of religion, as Heinrich Himmler did when he stole a library-load of Norwegian freemasons’ books, today is the day that Adolf Hitler finally couldn’t take the stress of it anymore, and blew his brains out in his bunker. And oh yeah: The Vikings weren’t bigots, so don’t you use ancient religion as an excuse to be one yourself. If you’re smart, you’ll do what the Pagan Federation of Ireland told one officiant-seeking bigot, and fuck off with that noise.

Blessed be!

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Posted in Confessions of a Bad German, Fascism Without Swastikas, Good to Know, Isn't It Ironic?, Isn't That Racist?, Karma 1, Dogma 0, Scandinavian Smorgasbord, Schadenfreude | Comments Off on Happy Walpurgisnacht!