Momma mia! I
thought Citibank advertised, �The Citi never sleeps.� But no, it�s his honor,
the Sheriff of America, who quietly opened Giuliani Capital Advisors, a
100-person investment bank on April 30, reported by the
good old Daily News, the same day
Rudy met with Republicans in Iowa, in search of the commander in chief gig. And
here I�m just catching up with him.
This guy works
faster than someone running from his Office of Emergency Management on the 23rd
floor of Tower 7(Larry Silverstein�s building) on 9/11/2001, pulled eight hours
after the 9/11 hit. He told the 9/11 Commission he heard that Tower 7 was going
down at 9:15. No wonder he was running around the street all day. He had no
place to go.
Speaking of the
OEM, Ray Kelly, New York�s current police commissioner recently said, �If
Giuliani had any sense of the threat, he would have gotten out of the City Hall
area. He put it [the OEM] right next to a target. It was just unwise.� Kelly,
who was fired from the post by Giuliani in 1993 and reappointed by Mayor
Bloomberg, shared these edgy observations in Grand Illusion: The Untold Story of Rudy Giuliani and 9/11 by Dan
Collins and Rudy critic Wayne Barrett. Check the August 10 review
Saltonstall, Daily News senior
Kelly also pointed
out that in addition to using the site of the 1993 �terror� bombing, archaic
radios kept the police and fire departments from effectively communicating on
that chaotic and tragic day. Kelly suggested also that both departments should
have had a unified post, so they would have been face-to-face. Maybe the mayor
had had other things on his mind, which brings us back to Guiliani Capital
Introducing Brand Rudy
who runs GCA, had this to say, �There are a lot of high-class
investment-banking boutiques out there, but we really thought there was room
for another one that we could build off the back of this brand.� This brand
would be, er, brand Guiliani? Move over Ralph, Calvin, Tommy, and Martha. Brand
Rudy is here. Ba-da-bing, ba-da-boom.
According to the Daily News, �court filings show Giuliani
Advisors has collected millions of dollars in fees and expenses from bankrupt
companies. The filings open a rare window into the former mayor�s new empire,
which includes a law firm and the consultancy Giuliani Partners.� I�m waiting
for the restaurant, Rudy�s Window on the World. Maybe that would leave a bad
The thing is lots
of retired pols strike it rich tap-dancing in business. But the big RG (how
would those initials look on your tailored broadcloth shirt) is a virtual
tycoon. The presidency aside, his business interests, and I quote the News, �are vast and absorbing. Even his
political trip to Iowa [was] scheduled to coincide with a paid speech in Des
Moines.� And guess what? �Much of Giuliani�s work is confidential.� I�ll bet.
But a Giuliani
aide, Sunny Mindel, said, �We�re in the private sector. We have clients about
which you may not know anything.� I�ll bet. But their tasks include
�high-profile� work for Mexico City and the pharmaceutical industry. Don�t tell
me. They�re synthesizing Acapulco gold for pain sufferers.
Political Buzz Good for Bizness
�political buzz is good for business, but many wonder if [Rudy] can step off
the money trail and back onto the campaign trail.� Hey, I�ll bet it�s as easy
as Dick Cheney going from government to Halliburton back to government to
Halliburton and George Bush skipping from Harken to the Texas Rangers to the
governorship and presidency. Their respective net worth is $90 million and $20
million, that�s on the books. And of course, Mr. Bush luckily skipped the
insider trading rap when he dumped his Harken shares the day before Gulf 1
began and hopped from the capital gains evasion rap when he sold his $600,000
worth of Texas Rangers stock for $15 million to Rangers� owner Tom Nixon. But I
digress. Or do I? Is it all one thing?
�Court papers and
other filings offer a glimpse at the [Giuliani) banking business,� reported the
Daily News, �in which Giuliani Partners
has a controlling stake.� In fact, GCA�s numero uno banking client seems to be
Delta Air Lines. They hired the boyz last September (the cruelest month) at a
monthly fee of $400,000. That�s a lot of scharola
(escarole, green stuff) as we used to say in the old neighborhood. It�s
supposedly an industry standard-fee but it still pissed off pilots who had to
take pay and retirement cuts, including a retired pilot friend of mine who sent
me the brand R article. But that�s life they say. And Giuliani asked for
$20,343 in lodging and $9,471 in business meals for his crew. That�s living
large, I say, on OPM (other people�s money).
Banco GCA also
nipped Aloha Airlines for about $3 million for work on restructuring, and ditto
for U.S. Airways creditors' committee. Jesus, if I were cynical I�d say these
looked almost like disguised campaign contributions, like W�s $15 mill from Tom
Nixon. But hey, let�s be optimistic. The man�s the American Dream, right.
Father was a rough and tumble bartender, head-busting loan-collector in a
saloon in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, did some time in Sing Sing; cousin a hijacker
suspected of taking part in several murders; the family in general connected to
the Family. Their rap sheet can run down your arm.
GCA in fact has 36
deals on its website with midsize companies, too. And other clients and its own
investments, like 20 percent of a company selling energy-efficient lights to
cities, with a $150 grand retainer for the deal. That�s about what brand Rudy
earned a year as mayor. And the White House gig pays $400,000 a year, the
monthly fee for Giuliani Capital Advisors. Anything wrong with this picture?
What does Commissioner Kelly think? Well, it turns out a couple days after his
Saltonstall interview, Kelly redacted most of his criticisms. Good soldier, let
the negativity go. Be positive like brand Rudy. Arm-twisting here? Nah.
Why even Bernie
Kerik, another Giuliani find for police commissioner, worked his way up to head
of Homeland Security and did a stint before that as security chief in Iraq,
until the Daily News brought us his double
affair laid bare, one with Correction Officer Jeanette Pinero (for the bad
boy in him) and one with famed publishing queen Judith Regan (for the
autobiographic author in him). These were followed by revelations of his
accepting nearly 200 grand in work on his home, thousands in cash and gifts
without disclosure, and ties to a construction company believed to be linked to
the mob. A real beaut Bernie.
Keeping His Political Torch Lit
York�s ex-mayor is keeping �his political torch lit.� He hired John Avlon,
former City Hall speechwriter as director of communications for his political
action tribe. He�s not letting the Republican Christian Right stop him either.
He still has his urban roots, albeit a remarkably lousy record with blacks and
other minorities. That should be worth something with all those nice white
folks from all-white places.
Avlon, by the way,
is a columnist for the New York Sun,
slightly to the right of Ghengus Khan. He�s even, believe it or not, a critic
of Bush�s domestic policy. He doesn�t like his ties? Among his heroes is the
model centrist (and not so model husband) Bill Clinton. What a group.
But hey, that�s
what it takes. Politics, as Hunter Thompson once said, is �the ultimate blood
sport.� You have to want to kill to win. Did Gore? Kerry? Clinton did. Bush
did. Just take a look at the stolen elections. And brand Rudy, what about him?
Now on his third marriage, his first to his cousin, ending in annulment, the
second to the genuinely classy Donna Hanover, mother of his two children,
dumped for third bride, Upper East Side cutie Judy Nathan. This after, as Bob
Novak of all people said, years of public adultery. Well, who knows how it will
all wash in Wisconsin. Out, out damned spots.
For sure, you can expect
anything from brand Giuliani. Just click the link to the left to my last Online Journal article on brand R. It�s
Jerry Mazza is a
freelance writer living in New York City. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.