Friday, January 12, 2007

Say It Ain't So, Jimmy

It's hard to read Alan Dershowitz's denunciation of former President Jimmy Carter without getting a sinking feeling. Dershowitz summarizes the huge sums which investigative journalists now say Jimmy Carter received from Arab and Islamic sources. And they are considerable. The Saudis bailed out his peanut farm in 1976. The infamous BCCI and Saudi billionaire Gaith Pharaon actually helped with the startup funding of the Carter Center. Carter himself is quoted fulsomely thanking  Sheik Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahyan, the long time ruler of the UAE, for donating half a million dollars. From what is known Carter has received tens of millions of dollars from Arab and Islamic sources. And that, argues Dershowitz, is behind the former President's tireless campaigning against Israel. He says so in the most brutal and accusatory terms: "Carter ... has been bought and paid for by anti-Israel Arab and Islamic money." But it is one of Dershowitz's sources, Dr. Rachel Ehrenfeld, who provides the most food for thought: "seems that AIPAC's (American-Israel Political Action Committee) real fault was its failure to outdo the Saudi's purchases of the former president's loyalty". The sinking feeling is the realization that this is what political viewpoints might come down to.


America began as a minor power on the world stage. It was to the capitals of Europe that the shadowy men made their pilgrimage. But since 1945, and into the foreseeable future the capital of the planet will be Washington. Today, the city by the Potomac is not just the capital city of the United States, it is in a real and meaningful sense the political center of the world. And now it is no longer just to the capitals of Europe that the influence-peddlers make their journey. It is to Washington, DC. America was designed as a Republic but it is now under the same sort of pressure that beset empires. Cunning men from the outlying provinces will wend their way into and whisper in the corridors at court. Although it hasn't happened yet, America's global role means that politicians in Washington will often be divided between a loyalty to the US voters who elected them into office and debts of gratitude to the foreign lobbies that make it possible for them to campaign successfully. The coming elections in 2008 will be the first billion dollar election in history. If this is the way the game is played, with AIPAC in a bidding war with the Muslim money, where does Kansas come in?

I think it would be a mistake to see this solely in terms of the prisms of the "Jewish Lobby" and the "Saudi lobby". That is the focus because of the circumstances of this case. But I think that the problem is far more general. There were rumors of Chinese influence in the Clinton White House. Who knows what lobbies corrupt Latin American governments fund. And I was personally horrified to discover that even the small Philippine government once employed one Mario Crespo, AKA Mark Jimenez, who was once an expert on Latin America, to lobby the Clintons. Crespo has just completed a Federal jail term and is now back in the Philippines where he was once again implicated in corruption allegations involving the current President, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo. A LOT of foreign lobbies want influence in Washington. How does one guard against that?


Blogger Charles said...

Quoted from Wikipedia
A 2005 poll by the AFI ranked Dorothy's line "Toto, I've got a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore" as the fourth most memorable line in cinema history

1/12/2007 02:34:00 PM  
Blogger Meme chose said...

Sadly Kansas gets its leg broken, before the race even starts, by John McCain and his 'campaign finance reform'.

Some people are shocked by how much is spent on US electoral campaigns, particularly for the Presidency. I think it's surprising and even dangerous how little is spent, given the value of what is being fought over.

Driving these expenditures out of sight, which is all that quixotic measures to 'take money out of politics' achieve, is positively dangerous.

There may in fact be almost nothing more imminently hazardous to the future of the United States. Once one side gets the idea it has to take foreign money under the table because the other side is already doing so (and Clinton as well as Carter left a lot of suggestive evidence like this lying around), a ruinous competition may become established virtually overnight.

As Benjamin Franklin warned, "A Republic, if you can keep it".

1/12/2007 02:40:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

Jews don’t have enough trouble with stereotype? If Dr. Ehrenfeld is accurately quoted, this was an incredibly stupid thing for her to say.

1/12/2007 02:42:00 PM  
Blogger summignumi said...

Only way to stop the Jimmy Carters of the future are to make foreign donations of any manner, direct or indirect illegal, just think if the Prez could be a non-natural born citizen then a Saudi would be Hillarie’s running mate with him being prez soon after by natural or unnatural means.
Sleven learned the Kansas City shuffle so will the rest of the US if Jimmy is not denounced and made an example of.

1/12/2007 02:52:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

Thank goodness you pointed this out, Wretchard!

Sweden and Poland-Lithuania also had liberal constitutions in the 1760's, and outside meddling in their elections eventually stripped both nations of their liberty and political power. (Sweden became a French satellite while Poland-Lithuania was partitioned.)

This makes me wonder if the principal reason why America has kept its liberty for so long is precisely because America has been so historically weak and insignificant that outside powers did not find it worthwhile to meddle in our elections.

1/12/2007 03:19:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was just thinking of possible Foreign Bank deposits back in the days of Eason Jordan's minders.

1/12/2007 03:26:00 PM  
Blogger runtchard said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1/12/2007 03:53:00 PM  
Blogger runtchard said...

Ol Jimmah's Scatological Misadventures

By the thirty minute mark, Ol Jimmah was beginning to weaken. As a younger man, he would have shrugged off these bouts with a flush and an egress to the shower. But now, arthritically restrained and fearful, he told himself it was best to just stay seated, best not to test the slippery floor of the shower.

Through a wave of dizziness, he began to hope the deed was done and began to slowly rise, his bowels still aching as if gripped and torqued by some poltergeist.

A deep breath and a hope that relief was imminent, Ol Jimmah shuffled over to the sink, catching a glimpse of his face, matted with sweat, sanguine from strain and weathered from another test of his faith.

His doctor had said such episodes can have emotional triggers, caused by environemntal stimulants that irk or bother in such a way that the brain resorts to waste evacuation. He wanted nothing of their "anti-anxiety" pills and saw the burden as another sign of his own separateness, that he should burden so rare a malady was highly suggestive of prestige the most cosmic...

But today's newspaper, the image of Saddam Hussein, a modern Saladin who would have united the whole Arab world, yet was betrayed by America and Iraqis - ingrates and fools all - like beasts that would attack their young or as the devout purges a heretic. He and Saddam were imbued with a common substance, and Ol Jimmah couldn't help but envy the epic drama surrounding Saddam, a Samson amidst the Philistines.

But it was the rage at the injustice and the illegitimacy that got to him, regardless of Saddam's Muslim stoicism. Jimmah knew he did not possess the Saladinian fortitude to war against those vulnerable by corruption, to challenge destiny with choice. Instead, Jimmah was a creature of fate, shining a light where Americans would never otherwise see, and so alienated for his those same Promethian writ-Georgian powers.

The newspaper had triggered all these thoughts and more, all in a rushed instant, surging from brainstem to bowels in the spasm and twitch of smooth muscles. Cursing the paper, the Bush family and the craven readership, he hobbled to the bathroom a half hour ago.

Ol Jimmah dabbed his brow with tissues and hobbled back to flush, his legs jingling by their tethers of collapsed pants and loose change. With the turn of the knob, he heard the ominous airless burble and splash of gallons upon gallons pouring into the bowl. Panicking, Ol Jimmah looked left and right, hoping for a plunger, knowing all too well they were kept in the basement, and all the while the filthy water, opaque with waste, rose rapidly to the brim.

In his panic he turned to flee when his anxiety snapped again into a sharp knot in his gut, rotting it with contorted smooth muscle impulses.

He looked at the sink - too high! The toilet, no room! But the bathtub, that was the only chance -

He angrily slammed the sliding door open with the fury of a righteous curmudgeon, and turned to face the burbling porcelain as he angled his hind self over the tub, just as the episode culminated and exploded, splattering and flecking the floors and the walls, everything in a radial pattern of fecal fractals - this just as the flushed gallons crested the brim and began to dribble then spill and then dump the contents all over the bathroom floor at Ol Jimmahs feet.

More than surprised, Ol Jimmah was aghast with offense, furious that such coincidences could occur. So much so, that his footing slipped on the waste water and his feeble grip slid from the wobbly shower doors, and backwards Ol Jimmah fell, just as another episode began to rumble.

1/12/2007 04:02:00 PM  
Blogger MyTimeCards said...

Obvious, I know, but let's not forget Johnny Chung and Liu Chaoying and Hughes Aerospace and the Bhuddists and all that. It certainly isn't new, at least to Democrats.

1/12/2007 04:05:00 PM  
Blogger Charles said...

The Anderson Forecast: 2007 Predictions From One of the Best

Futurist and Anayst has a 93% accuracy rate. So what does he see happening in 2007?

Jim Louderback - PC Magazine

Dec. 15

Analyst and futurist Mark Anderson, author of the influential Strategic News Service newsletter and blog has made a career out of making correct predictions. He claims a 93.5 percent success ratio over the years he's been doing annual predictions.

By and large, I think they've held up pretty well. So when Anderson invited me to his annual prediction dinner, I accepted immediately – even though it meant missing our company holiday party, held concurrently in New York City.

Do those numbers stand up? Decide for yourself. Read Anderson's 2006 predictions.

Anderson started by laying out some chilling world trends that keep him up at night. "I think about oil, cheap labor and money", he said, continuing to explain that "these are things which we have no control over."

Anderson sees virtually everything else in the world as "laying in a bed of lettuce" made out of oil from OPEC, cheap labor from Asia and elsewhere, and global liquidity and real cash, which are controlled by bankers, hedge funds and traders worldwide. Even worse, he went on, "I think that the Fed has lost control of the US economy", and their ability to "measure what we're doing in any meaningful way."

Anderson then echoed a recent assertion by PNNL Laboratories in Seattle, and echoed by futurist Ray Kurzweil, that America actually has enough electrical capacity available today to provide energy for 84 percent of the cars in the US – as long as they were all plug-in hybrids. "No new plants, no new programs, and existing technology for cars," he said. "If this is this simple, let's do it."
For more go to:

The Anderson Forecast: 2007 Predictions From One of the Best

1/12/2007 04:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Motivation is almost irrelevant in our politics. Sure, politicians could be motivated to serve foreign lobbies, but they will be judged by what they do for us, the people.

And if their patrons become too prominent, the politician's toast.

Of all the things to worry about, this one is rather small.

1/12/2007 04:23:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

"The Saudis bailed out his peanut farm in 1976."

And shortly thereafter the price of gas went sky freakin' high.

And Carter pushed through changes in regulations that caused US Domestic oil production to drop by 20%.

And the oil (and terrorist) producing Libiyans hired his brother Billy as a lobbyist.

And when Soviet scientists tried to come discuss nuclear fusion research with their US counterparts, Carter had them stopped, with a blanket literally thrown over the blackboard during the meeting.

But no, we need to worry about Dick Cheny forerly running Haliburton and the fact that Pres Bush's father used to work in the oil industry. That's what is important. Yes, that's it.

1/12/2007 04:25:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

There has been a rumor floating around for a while that Carter bailed on the Shah of Iran because he wouldn't bribe Carter.

1/12/2007 04:49:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

BTW my last magic word was lzrjmi.

How do they do it?

1/12/2007 04:50:00 PM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

You have to wonder why we aren't going gang busters on this:

Easy Low Cost No Radiation Fusion

1/12/2007 04:57:00 PM  
Blogger Db2m said...

Wretchard said,

"There were rumors of Chinese influence in the Clinton White House."


As there were rumors that bears dump in the woods.


Golly, Wretchard, I thought you were old enough to remember the Clinton presidency...or have all the multifarious scandals gone down the "memory hole" already?

Or is it the sly tentacles of the old none-dare-call-it-treason-syndrome censorship?

1/12/2007 05:25:00 PM  
Blogger slimslowslider said...

The Carter example is just a Microcosm of the Oil money influence. The MSM and Europe are Giant Carter's.

1/12/2007 07:32:00 PM  
Blogger ndw said...

Carter ... has been bought and paid for by anti-Israel Arab and Islamic money.

Or maybe Carter was funded by anti-Israeli money because he was already anti-Israeli, from the beginning.

I won't accuse Carter of being a stooge. I think his anti-Israeli bias is completely innate.

1/12/2007 08:09:00 PM  
Blogger Pofarmer said...

There has been a rumor floating around for a while that Carter bailed on the Shah of Iran because he wouldn't bribe Carter.

Or maybe the Saudi's wanted him out of the way?

I wonder if we'll see this on 60 minutes.

1/12/2007 09:28:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Carter the traitor should stick to Habitat for Humanity...

absurd thought -
God of the Universe likes
left-wing insanity...

1/12/2007 10:31:00 PM  
Blogger 3Case said...

I think Mr. Carter IS a stooge whose anti-Israeli bias IS innate.

In my worldview, Carter was bought and paid for by the Rockefeller Brothers to secure their family's position in the billionaire's club; they were a bit overextended in the 'mid-70s - some bad banking decisions were big in the mix of their woes. Then again, the centerpiece of the Rockefeller family fortune is the Exxon half of what is now Exxon/Mobil.

Carter is the worst president in the history of the Republic and he continues to sail his legacy to new depths to this day.

Carter is the buttboy of the Saudis and Clinton is the buttboy of the Chinese and the Dhimicrats, with their MSM buttboy toadies, heap vitriol on the President and party which try, at least, to represent Americans; though I must say that what Frist and Hastert were up to the last few years wholly eludes me...and WHAT were the Republicans thinking putting a doctor and a pharmacist in charge in a sea of lawyers?!!

1/12/2007 10:36:00 PM  
Blogger ledger said...

I had always heard that Carter was anti-Jewish and had acquired a taste for radical oil wannabe money. I never knew Carter was into it this deep. The oil tic wannabes have him on a string.

This explains a lot of Carter’s actions. I believe Carter the worst president in modern times (and a very corrupt one at that).

1/13/2007 01:16:00 AM  
Blogger Dan Goorevitch said...

If he didn't get his info on what happened in Camp David from Dennis Ross or the Israelis, then he must have got it from another source. What is the reason for dismissing the Israeli and American positions and wholly embracing the Palestinain position? Why does he not stint in calling Americans and Israelis liars when he allowed Kim-il Sung to develop nuclear weapons, saying he had to believe Kim 1 didn't intend to use them for military purposes because not to believe him "would have been to call the man a liah!"?

1/13/2007 08:50:00 AM  
Blogger Dan Goorevitch said...

Jimmy says he didn't read Dennis Ross's book. How likely is that?

1/13/2007 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger William Tyroler said...

Any possibility the Killer Rabbit that put Jimmy's very life in jeopardy is of the type the NoKos plan to dine on?

1/13/2007 06:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, Carter bribed Israel and Egypt into not shooting at each other, so what the heck.

1/13/2007 09:38:00 PM  
Blogger vbwyrde said...

How do you combat this sort of thing? Great question. Here's my take:

The Romans may have been on to something with this law:

Table IX.
4. The penalty shall be capital for a judge or arbiter legally appointed who has been found guilty of receiving a bribe for giving a decision.


We seem to be missing the sorts of penalties which would inhibit politicians from taking bribes. Then again, even such laws as this did not keep the Roman Republic from descending into Empire, nor would the current crop of kiddie-poohs who inhabit the halls of congress ever curtail their special privileges.

First we need to determine why Adults do not run for Congress let alone get elected. Fix that. Then persuade them that it is in the best interest of the nation to do two things:

1. Create stern laws on official malfiescence with the Death Penalty liberally sprinkled throughout.

2. Make an effort to display, speak about, and uphold the concept of Honor. As long as politicians consistently squander their opportunities to do so we will continue to slouch toward the cesspool.

That's how you would tackle this issue.

1/14/2007 07:14:00 AM  
Blogger unaha-closp said...

Simple rules:

- if you operate business within a city, back a councilman.

- if you operate statewide, back a congressman.

- if you operate nationwide, back a party (or two)

- if you operate internationally, back a president.

1/14/2007 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger Evanston2 said...

I haven't seen Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11, but a major element was that Bush is indebted big-time to the Saudis, right? Gee, d'ya think Michael is scripting an expose on Jimmy Carter right now? Uh, fer sure, as soon as he finishes his expose on Sandy Burglar.
We all know the real coverup is of Bill Clinton's incompetence in treating terrorism as a "law enforcement problem" and the real scandal is the complicity of the MSM and hucksters like Moore.

1/14/2007 08:21:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Great thread--good to see the mask is falling off Jimmy Carter.

Wish someone had mentioned the rise of Hugo Chavez--and all that is flowing from that--as another disaster (for the free world) in which Carter played a very direct, and very shameless, hand.

Just search [carter chavez] and read awhile.

1/14/2007 08:45:00 PM  
Blogger Duke said...

The really sad thing is that our forefathers saw this problem and dealt with it. They put the original 13th Amendment in the Constitution: . It reads in toto: If any citizen of the United States shall accept, claim, receive, or retain any title of nobility or honour, or shall without the consent of Congress, accept and retain any present, pension, office, or emolument of any kind whatever, from any emperor, king, prince, or foreign power, such person shall cease to be a citizen of the United States, and shall be incapable of holding any office of trust or profit under them, or either of them. Lincoln replaced this with what we now call the 13th Amendment.

1/14/2007 08:47:00 PM  
Blogger gbarto said...

Was Carter bought and paid for by Arab and Islamic money? I don't think so. What does the damage is not money traded for favors, but money used to generate a favorable disposition toward the donors on the part of officeholders. If a colleague offered you fifty dollars to lie to the boss about his being drunk at work, you'd most likely run like hell before you got dragged into a mess. But if that colleague backed your projects at work and lent you $50 in a tight spot two weeks earlier, he wouldn't even have to ask.

Jimmy Carter, like the Bushes, fails to see the Saudis for what they are not because he's their agent, but because it's hard to believe that people who are so nice and so helpful to you could be as bad as everybody says. And if you're not too hot on Jews and the Saudis are your buddies, it doesn't take bribery to make your worst colors show. It just takes a little egging on from your friends.

What's scary is that purchasing access and building relationships is more dangerous than out and out bribery. A bribed official lays awake nights worrying that he'll be caught and calculating whether the favor was worth the risks to his career and liberty. Jimmy Carter sleeps soundly in the knowledge that he's right and that the people who stand by him when it counts always tell him so.

Thank God Bush is an evangelical, or Israel might already have been sold out. And not for thirty pieces of silver. Just a handshake and a helping hand from friends of the family.

This is why McCain's restrictions on speech are the last thing we need. There's too much at stake for the money not to flow to Washington. Better to let it flow freely so we can all see where it goes. Voters, so that they know which candidates are too close to questionable contributors, and candidates so that they can find out the Saudis are everyone's friend before they do something stupid in the belief that their relationship with the Saudis is special.

1/14/2007 09:42:00 PM  
Blogger AST said...

I don't know what to make of Carter, but it casts a new light on all those slurs an from the left about Bush and Cheney being buddies with Big Oil and their foreign policy being driven by a desire to steal Middle Eastern Oil.

I've wondered what the point of that was, but I can see it as a Arab myth created to explain why we support Israel. Funny, isn't it, to think that it's not Bush and Cheney who are beholden to Arab Oil interests, but that kindly old peanut vendor, Jimmy Carter.

1/15/2007 12:31:00 AM  
Blogger Cosmo said...

Always follow the money. Always.

Some folks actually believe that opposition to the invasion of Iraq by Europe's political establishment and at the UN was animated by principle, instead of by fear of losing the lucrative organized crime concession they were running in Messopotamia.

Carter could have preserved his image of idealistic naif had he confined himself to Habitat For Humanity and similar endeavors following his disastrous presidency.

The national heart would by now have grown a warm spot for him and largely forgotten the cardigan sweaters and whiff of decline he brought to the planet's most important office.

But the longer he continued to insinuate himself into the national political scene, the more obvious his fraudulence has become.

1/15/2007 07:38:00 AM  
Blogger paul a'barge said...

America began as a minor power on the world stage. It was to the capitals of Europe that the shadowy men made their pilgrimage. But since 1945, and into the foreseeable future the capital of the planet will be Washington. Today, the city by the Potomac is not just the capital city of the United States, it is in a real and meaningful sense the political center of the world

Good lord man, is there anything about which you do not bloviate? Do you write this stuff in the shower, enamored with the sound of your own thoughts?

Here, let me help you out ... Jimmie Carter is a pig.

How's that for pithiness?

1/15/2007 08:41:00 AM  
Blogger M. Simon said...

Here is an excellent article (on my blog, A. Jacksonian wrote it)

On the future of oil.

Oil Outlook

Its main targets are Iran and Venezuela, but inferences can be made about the Saudis and others.

1/15/2007 10:31:00 AM  
Blogger Ed Darrell said...

It is grotesquely unfair, inaccurate and misleading to say that Jimmy Carter got money that was never given to him.

Get accurate. The money went to the Carter Center, the non-profit that is dedicated to finding peaceful solutions to conflict.

Is the money the Arabs donated greater than the money Bill Gates and Warren Buffet donated? Is it greater than money from Jews? Is it greater than money from large corporations? Is it greater than money from Europeans? Is it greater than money from Americans? Is there any hint that there is any quid pro quo for any donation given?

Your post is scurrilously inaccurate -- you're not alone, of course. But in the interests of fairness, you should make corrections, and put things in perspective.

And then, perhaps you could do some analysis of Carter's arguments: He says the wall is unfair and creates ill-will. Is he wrong? Do you defend the construction of any wall, the ghettoization of any group in any place? Why in this case, and why on scurrilous grounds?

1/16/2007 05:01:00 PM  
Blogger Ed Darrell said...

Oh, and can you tell us who those "investigative" journalists are? I'll wager they are not.

The donations are fully disclosed in the Carter Center annual reports.

I think apologies are in order.

1/16/2007 05:02:00 PM  
Blogger Pat Patterson said...

I'm with sardonic on this but only if we can bring back the same penalties of the Twelve Tables. Beheading, flogging til death, hanging, drowning, cutting of the limbs and Vlad's favorite the stake. Unfortunately bribery doesn't result in crucifixion or being thrown off the Tarpeian rocks sewn up in a bag.

1/17/2007 06:23:00 AM  
Blogger Evanston2 said...

Ed Darrell, you asked for an example of Mr. Carter's benefiting directly and monetarily from foreign influence. The Washington Times article (linked to by Wretchard) points out that Mr. Carter benefited in a loan renegotiation with BCCI of $60,000. That amount may seem like "peanuts" now, but at the time it was worth more and is an example of how Carter directly benefited from foreign influence. Jack Anderson is a journalist mentioned in relation to the BCCI scandal. "Journalists" are obviously reporting on the Carter Center's current entanglements, I don't know whether they would meet your definition of what constitutes an "investigative" journalist but it hardly matters. The facts either exist, or do not.

Now, since you are evidently familiar with Carter Center financial reports, does the Center finance Mr. Carter's world travels? Does the Center pay him appearance fees, per diem and the like? What about Mr. Carter's friends and family? Is the Center a front to funnel money to them? Is Mr. Carter truly at "arms-length" from the operations of the Center? If so, why are many folks affiliated with the Center resigning their posts?
In the great state of Illinois former governor Jim Ryan was convicted of multiple charges and may soon go to prison. He did not, himself, directly receive any funds. However, his family and friends benefited from influence peddling and his vacations and other expenses were often reimbursed by "friends" (who just happened to do business with the state). My point is that one's actions do not need to be gross or obvious to be illegal.
In the case of Mr. Carter, his actions are probably legal since he is no longer an officeholder. There is a slight possibility that he could be found to have failed to register as an agent of a foreign government. And that is difficult to prove.

Still, I have one question for you: exactly how much funneling of funds to another person's "pet" causes is enough to worry you? Remember, this is foreign money -- not just domestic lobbying by natural allies or interest groups.
Sorry that so many of us have been "grotesquely unfair" to Mr. Carter.

1/17/2007 09:40:00 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Powered by Blogger