Saturday, January 12, 2008

Whatever happened to Mark Jimenez?

Readers may recall the story of former Clinton associate Mark Jimenez, the man who was convicted for tax evasion and election financing offenses in a Florida court. He now has a website in which he tells the story of his life. And boy what a story it is.



Currently, Jimenez describes himself as a "Businessman. Philanthrophist. Humanitarian. Populist. Controversial. Ex-convict. God-fearing," though not necessarily in that order. Here are excerpts from his website.

LIFE WITH THE CLINTONS

Mark first met former U.S. President Bill Clinton in 1994, and the meeting brought him close to the occupants of the White House in Washington. Mark was soon playing golf with the American president and socializing with former First Lady and now-Sen. Hillary Clinton.

He became Florida's largest donor to the Democratic Party in 1996. He reportedly contributed more than US$800,000 to various Democrat causes. He also donated generously to the renovation of Clinton's ancestral home in Arkansas. Other prominent Democrats at that time such as Vice President Al Gore, Senator Edward Kennedy, and many others also regarded him as a major supporter and close friend. Soon, the White House was consulting Mark on Latin American affairs.

Mark had visited and even stayed overnight at the White House at least a dozen times. He slept in a room on the same floor where the first couple's bedroom was located, the only Filipino given such an honor by the American president.

The fascination of Mark Jimenez with the Democrats is understandable. He was, and still is, a populist at heart, and the Democratic Party's platform is similar to the populist ideology Mark believed in. The word populism comes from the Latin word "populus," which generally means people as a nation.

As an ideology, populism spouses the idea that the government should be run by the people. Populism is in direct contrast with elitism, aristocracy, or plutocracy that espouses government by a small, privileged group above the masses.

Here's how Jimenez describes his persecution -- or prosecution if you prefer. "In 1996 President Clinton and Vice President Gore were reelected although Republicans retained their control of Congress. Hurting for their presidential election defeat, the Republicans accused the Democratic Party in 1997 of illegal campaign solicitations and fund-raising practices. Allegedly, the Democratic Party had collected contributions from foreign companies and individuals, who under campaign finance rules are not allowed to contribute money to political campaigns. The ensuing witch hunt cornered what the Republicans perceived as their political enemies, including Mark Jimenez. A case was filed against him in the U.S. on April 15, 1999, and a petition for extradition was later on submitted to the Philippine Department of Justice (DOJ). ... They reported that Mark was being sought by U.S. Authorities because he was a drug dealer, a money launderer, a smuggler, a tax evader, a racketeer, or a mafiosi."

Jimenez presents himself as being innocent of these occupations; at any rate he was extradited from the Philippines, where he had instantly reacquired his Filipino citizenship and was elected as a Congressman. He used his position to resist extradition. However, Jimenez was eventually returned to the US and sentenced by District Judge Patricia Sietz of the US District Court for the Southern district of Florida, Miami Division to 27 months in prison on charges of tax evasion and election financing offenses on August 1, 2003. In addition to the prison term, Jimenez was ordered to pay US$1.2 million in restitution.

Now if you think Mark was on his way down after climbing top of the social ladder in the White House, think again. He claims he met with Jesus himself while in Federal Prison. Here's the account in his own words.

LIFE IN SOLITARY

Paradoxically, Mark regarded his prison experience, particularly the time spent in isolation chambers, as the most joyous and joyful moments of his life. He turned to God. He had always felt close to God since his childhood -- living his life in accordance with the Golden Rule -- but in prison he surrendered everything to the Lord. He offered to God the anger and bitterness he felt against those who he thought had betrayed him.

Repentant, he spent his days in prayer, fasting, and meditation in the dark isolation chamber. One day, he saw a heavenly vision. With his eyes closed, he became aware of a strange light emanating from somewhere above his head. Soft celestial music from afar and scent of fresh flowers also filled his isolation room. His breath was like a mist rising up to heaven.

Gazing around, Mark saw angels coming down from heaven and carrying a shining crown, singing praises and praying for the glory of God. With them were seraphim, cherubims, and saints and they were all praying and praising God, too.

His prison became the Garden of Heaven; his bed became the Temple of God; and his pillows the Tabernacle of the Holy Spirit. Mark was filled with peace and happiness and closed his eyes. When he opened them again he saw Jesus Christ in His full splendor and magnificence, standing beside his bed. He gently touched Mark's hands and stroke his forehead;

"I have forgiven all your sins, Mark," Jesus said in a tender voice full of love. "All your transgressions, I have already paid for on the cross." Christ gently touched and closed Mark's eyes. He felt as if he was floating in space. When he opened his eyes again, Mark found himself at the foot of a stairway. An angel took his hands and they all ascended to the seemingly endless stairway. They eventually reached an altar where God was waiting.

The Lord embraced him and said, "welcome to heaven, Mark."

Every day, the vision of heaven came to him until he was released from the isolation chamber.

Recently, the former big in Florida Democratic politics has been suing his children for engaging in a "Luciferic" business conspiracy against him. Jimenez's wife has also sought the protection of the court for attempting to perform exorcism on her, among other things. This is how it ends: not with a whimper but a bang.

5 Comments:

Blogger Doug said...

Somehow, I think Anne's Dad would be less than impressed.
---
"Of course, he did show strong emotion when The New York Post would run a photo of Teddy Kennedy saying the rosary.
I can still see the look of disgust.
I saw that face in "How To Read People Like a Book" and it was NOT a good chapter.
"
John Vincent Coulter
By Ann Coulter

John Vincent Coulter was of the old school, a man of few words, the un-Oprah, no crying or wearing your heart on your sleeve, and reacting to moments of great sentiment with a joke. Or as we used to call them: men.

When he was moping around the house once, missing my brother who had just gone back to college, he said, "Well, if you had cancer long enough, you'd miss it."
---
Father hated puffery, pomposity, snobbery, fake friendliness, fake anything. Like Kitty's father in "Anna Karenina," he could detect a substanceless suitor in a heartbeat. (They were probably the same ones who looked nervous when I told them Father was ex-FBI and liked to shoot squirrels in the backyard.)

He hated unions because of their corrupt leadership, ripping off the members for their own aggrandizement. But he had more respect for genuine working men than anyone I've ever known. He was, in short, the molecular opposite of John Edwards.

Father didn't care what popular opinion was: There was right and wrong. I don't recall his ever specifically talking about J. Edgar Hoover or Joe McCarthy, but we knew he thought the popular histories were bunk. That's why "Treason" was dedicated to him, the last book of mine he was able to read.

When Father returned from the war, he used the G.I. Bill to complete college and law school in three years. In order to get to law school quickly, he chose the easiest college major -- a major that so impressed him, he told my oldest brother that if he ever took one single course in sociology, Father would cut off his tuition payments.

1/12/2008 04:43:00 AM  
Blogger Wretchard said...

I'm less than impressed by the Jesus stuff too, though I wouldn't discount the possibility he really did have a supernatural encounter in prison, just not with who he describes. Mark Jimenez is living proof of the proposition that just because you're crazy it doesn't follow that you have to be stupid. This guy has awesome skills at conniving, inveigling, coaxing, threatening, and conning himself into and out of situations.

Then it hit me that he fit right into the exalted circles he moved in. It was a world he understood perfectly. To the average working stiff that outwardly glittering scene would really be an alien landscape.

1/12/2008 04:54:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hope this guy doesn't end up in Marci Park!
Day 10 Pownal, VT

Hey gang, update. Tim and I went fishing with Marty. He’s been there about 66 years and when he and his neighbors were kids they and their beagles were models in Normal Rockwell‘s paintings. We saw his studio and he had a couple of paintings where Marty and his beagle were featured. Tim actually collects his prints so that was cool.

Cannot say enough about Lisa and Al who own the Farm Hill B&B great people and pretty awesome blueberry pancakes. So we are on Monday morning early on the way to Pownal—20-mile hike on back roads. And we are on the road to goodness.
——-
Hey team this is day, uh, I forget. Anyway Tim Finchem and I walked from the Hill Farm Inn in Arlington, VT down to Bennington and Pownal. The day was fairly uneventful except that it rained the entire day.
And so we were on the back roads going through the amazing countryside of VT. Very little traffic because we got to take the back roads instead of Route 7. I guess it was a great day in one way and that is this state has gone through a drought and you just don’t think of New England being dry and hot.
But you’ve been watching the weather like everyone — I haven’t –
I’ve been walking the weather not watching it. The rivers are down and the moisture that came yesterday (and for two or three days more) as I walk across America in ponchos is a true blessing for this part of the country.
And I guess when you think about it we all live the Austin weather and our own and we are kinda all in this together.

It is important to all parts of the state to have God’s good moisture hit the land. We had an extraordinary day frankly because it was walking in the rain and we had seven hours to catch up on a 27 year friendship and the funnest part was to go into Bennington (cool part of VT) and meet Ada Sue (School Teacher forever.)
And all her life she wanted a tea and pastry shop. We stopped in and had tea and pastries with her and her co-worker Joy in a place called Tea and Tarts. I think it is just one of the most amazing parts of my journey so far is just re-igniting my spirit of entrepreneurship.

I mean when you have people who start B&Bs, and innkeepers and ceramic shops and glass blowing companies and you have them open up herb and acupuncture companies and little sporting goods stores. And then you meet Ada Sue and Joy, (mainly Ada Sue who started Tea and Tarts) you just are blessed to know that in this country you can start something from nothing, you can build something from scratch, you can create things that weren’t there before.

And you can do this because you have a passion for this. Ada Sue has been wanting to do this for 20 years and when she got her dream come true she decided that that was what she was going to do. So she was able to build this tiny shop full of love and hope and teas and herbs and pastries.

That’s the entrepreneurship that makes America great. I think that as we look at what makes America good and then to great it is the small businesses, the people who build their businesses from scratch. And yes we represent a lot of the large ones and we are blessed – large companies are important especially in the global economy, but the small businesses that spot this great nation are the engine that drive jobs and growth and hope and passion and being able to live out your dream. That is what we are doing at Idea City. We are going to live out our dream and we are blessed with great people and great clients and I’m blessed to have you as great partners in this great adventure. So my shout out to my wife Mary and my kids…

And finally it is about 6:15 and raining and Tim and I are poncho-ing up here and we are heading to Pittsfield. Moving into MA today. Covered a great part of NH and VT. We crossed the border into MA. Tim will be flying back today. Been a great trip with him. Really great trip. So, I’ll be on the road to goodness on my own again.
So, love you guys and I’ll talk to you again soon.

1/12/2008 02:21:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

That's the new PR Head Man Hillary Just hired!
I saved all his web pages from Google Cache, started by thinking I'd find some dirt on his now inactive pages.
Instead I found this apparent Saint.
We'll see, won't we!

1/12/2008 02:24:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

Alas, it should be understood that the Christian language can be twisted to mean anything. And it often is twisted to mean exactly the opposite of what is intended.

This differs from something like the american civil liberties union aclu which was intended from the start to turn americans into pharonic slaves of the state.

1/13/2008 03:55:00 AM  

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