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Commentary Last Updated: Oct 1st, 2007 - 11:16:37

How low does Rudy go?
By Jerry Mazza
Online Journal Associate Editor

Oct 1, 2007, 01:12

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Let�s start with Rudy Giuliani having eight years to correct the non-working radios of firemen and not getting it right by 9/11. So, 131 firemen died in the World Trade Center's north tower alone because their radios did not work. Others couldn�t communicate with the police or helicopters because the Emergency Command Center at the WTC proved useless when it was needed most. The ECC was housed on the 23rd floor of Building 7, right where Rudy demanded it should be against experts� advice.

But then, Larry Silverstein, owner of Tower 7, who called for his building to be pulled at 3:30 that day, watched it sail down into it�s footprint two hours later. So did the Rudy bird know what was happening? He was on the street the morning of 9/11. At 9:15 a.m. he told ABC�s Peter Jennings, �We were operating out of there (Tower 7) when were told that the World Trade Center was gonna collapse.�

When recently a young black woman asked him face to face why didn�t he warn the people in the other towers, and call the media, and asked if he had foreknowledge, Rudy did a 180, a big smile on his face, and denied he ever said that. You have to see it to believe it as captured on YouTube.

Rudy also received a $100,000 fund-raiser aboard a yacht owned by his buddy Larry Silverstein, perhaps a little bit of payback for renting in his Building 7. Silverstein was also holder of the lease on the WTC that paid back $4.45 billion in insurance monies on Larry�s $14 million piece of the original 99-year, $320 million lease. Larry had also upped the insurance to $3.5 billion a month before 9/11, then asked to have it paid off twice because there were two separate �events,� i.e. plane hits. The insurance companies balked and after years of litigation Silverman settled for $2 billion of the $4.5 award to build the Freedom Tower.

All told 343 firefighters died that day. And the International Firefighters Union went on to officially dump support for Rudy. Part of it was for Rudy�s �scoop and dump� call, to end hunting for bodies because Rudy thought it slowed the work down. After an all out physical brawl between NYPD and NYFD, the hunt resumed and more bodies were found. But the cadaverous Rudy never lost a beat. In fact, the cleaning of Ground Zero, which was allotted 30 months to complete, was finished by a relentless pushing in eight months.

Workers dying from tasks at Ground Zero

The tragic result was that Rudy didn�t push at all for the workers to wear protective masks. Today, thousands of the workers are severely ill or have already died from cancers, respiratory disorders and other toxic waste-related illnesses. Just so all the evidence could be removed ASAP from the largest crime scene in the history of America. That�s how low he goes and lower.

Both Giuliani and Silverstein had foreknowledge of the fact that the Twin Towers were asbestos �bombs,� that is they were loaded with the lethal insulating material when they were built in the early 70s. The towers were not permitted to be leveled by internal demolition because they were part of a public trust, The Port of Authority of New York and New Jersey. Nevertheless, the towers had to come down by order of the City Council by about 2007. Unfortunately, they would have had to be disassembled piece by piece at a cost of billions of dollars.

Giuliani knew all this. Silverstein knew this when he leased the buildings less than two months before 9/11. Perhaps that�s why Silverstein upped the insurance to $3.5 billion, with provision for coverage from �terror attacks.� He later tried to double the benefit, which would have given him more than $7 billion. As of, March 24, 2003, the The New York Times reported on the final settlement in Insurers Agree to Pay Billions at Ground Zero. A second contract, which provided for the double payment had not been fully completed when the acts occurred, and thus triggered the six years of litigation. Yet consider how prescient it was of Silverstein to ask for it in the first place. But Rudy (and friends) go lower . . .

Rudy and Judy and the National Rifle Association

On September 21, Hizzoner took a cell call from his third wife, Judy, in the middle of an address to the National Rifle Association. He interrupted his talk for a chit-chat with the little woman on his cell. Then he continued, with that big smile, to flip-flop on his past advocacy for tougher gun laws. When asked if he still supported those laws to their full extent, he replied, �At the time, what I was doing during that time that I was mayor was taking advantage of every law and every interpretation of every law that I could think of to reduce crime,� he said. �Some people call it excessive; I call it intense.� I call it flip-flopping. But he goes lower . . .

Rudy�s ex-wives

His first wife was his second cousin but he waited six years to get an annulment, claiming he didn�t know she was his second cousin. Okay. His second wife, TV anchor Donna Hanover, the mother of his two children, was notified he was leaving her via a press conferencer. It�s no wonder that neither his son nor daughter talks to him. But he goes lower . . .

Rudy and the Iraq Study Group

Rudy managed to get himself kicked out of the prestigious group because he never attended meetings. He was too busy reaping in millions giving speeches on what a hero he was on 9/11. He skipped one meeting to hustle $200 grand for a keynote speech at an economic conference in South Korea. The next month he played hooky from a second meeting to make a $100 grand speech at a �leadership� meeting in Atlanta. That same day he went to a $100-a-ticket political fundraiser for conservative activist Ralph Reed. But he goes lower . . .

Rudy meets with Iraqi President Jalal Talabani

That happened at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Manhattan on September 26, where most of the gang from the UN General Assembly hang out. Actually, Talabani and Giuliani not only rhyme. They are birds of a feather, since Talabani, a source reports, and his government are facing a Henry Waxman Senate investigation committee regarding internal corruption, Blackwater USA, and the State Department.

No less than Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is trying to control what information can be released, questioned in public, et al. It�s another job of stonewalling Congress and the public. Rudy should have been right at home talking strategies with Jalal. Of course, Rudy was all for the war. And he didn�t have a speaking engagement on this day. He said he skipped the other Study Group meetings because (as a possible presidential candidate) he didn�t want to inject politics into the Group�s findings. But he goes lower . . .

Rudy opens a bank

Steven Oesterle, who ran Rudy�s bank, Giuliani Capital Partners, 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 Giuliani?

According to the New York 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 [more of the same].� I�m waiting for the restaurant, Rudy�s Windows on the World. But then, maybe that would leave a bad taste.

Rudy�s 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.�

Giuliani aide, Sunny Mindel, said, �We�re in the private sector. We have clients about which you may not know anything.� But their tasks include �high-profile work for Mexico City and the pharmaceutical industry.�

In the end, the bank was sold with the help of Giuliani�s partnered Texas law firm, Bracewell & Giuliani. They were receiving six-figure sums for lobbying Congress on behalf of Citgo Petroleum, a subsidiary of Venezuela�s state-owned oil company, despite Rudy�s criticism of President Hugo Chavez�s regime.

The big R also profited on the sale of his bank to Cintra. As Australian journalist Mark Coultan points out, Cintra is a financial partner with an Australian company, Macquarie, on a toll-road project in Indiana. It seems that Macquarie acquired the business and assets of an investment bank known as Giuliani Capital Advisors, which sold, according to the Washington Post, �for an undisclosed amount as Giuliani was preparing his run for president.� The amount is between $76 and $100 million, Coultan writes. This for a bank that ran up a net loss of $1.4 million after generous salaries to partners. The senior staff, who own about 30 percent of the stock, �will come with the deal.� But Rudy goes lower . . .

Giuliani & Bracewell law-busters

Does it surprise you that a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination is a partner in the Dallas law firm, Bracewell & Giuliani? It�s among the nation�s largest, with 400 attorneys and nine offices worldwide. And now B&G is exclusively representing the Spanish company Cintra through the privatization of Texas State Highway 121. Does anybody like to call Congress and let them know about this quid pro quo? The full story, linked above, is in the March 26, 2007, Dallas Business Journal.

Yes, Rudy�s milking the old cash cow, the 9/11 sheriff routine again to those sympathetic (rich and wannabe richer) Texans. The client, Cintra, has signed an agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation to finish the State Highway 121 toll road by 2011, a quarter century faster than possible through traditional sources (i.e. American workers), according to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT). What you should also know is that the toll road is part of the NAFTA Superhighway and construction of the Trans-Texas Corridor (TTC).

Independent Journalist Cliff Kincaid nails it in his article Giuliani Linked To �NAFTA Superhighway�: �Evidence shows that NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement involving the U.S., Canada and Mexico, is being expanded without congressional approval or oversight as part of a plan to create an economic and political entity known as the North American Union.� This is �the project that has people in Texas and around the nation up in arms.�

Kincaid quotes freelance writer Dianne M. Grassi, who originally broke the story of Rudy�s law firm on the TTC toll-road project.

She comments, �Most interesting to the whole story is not only has Giuliani�s involvement in the NAFTA Superhighway not ever having been publicly addressed, but how a foreign company is awarded the building of a mass highway system, versus maintaining it, for the first time in U.S. history, and negotiated by the law firm of the top Republican candidate running for President of the United States.�

Grassi also points out that �Cintra joined with San Antonio, Texas-based Zachry Construction Corp. to help land the contracts, in which Zachry owns a 20 percent interest. The Cintra-Zachry proposal for TTC-35 includes a private investment of up to $6 billion in upfront payments for the complete construction, design and operation of a 316-mile toll road between Dallas and San Antonio, giving Cintra the right to set tolls and keep toll road profits for a period of 50 years, as it will for each road it has contracted . . ."

Grassi goes on to say, �The NAFTA Superhighway and its corridors will run from Southwestern Mexico through Laredo, Austin and Dallas, TX, into Kansas City, KS, serving as an inland customs port. The corridor will split in Kansas with one leg going to Winnipeg, Canada, through Omaha, NE. The other leg goes to Toronto, Canada, through Des Moines, IA, Chicago, IL, and Detroit, MI. . . ."

Additionally, Terry Hall, founder and director of Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom (TURF), notes that �Giuliani clients with an interest in acquiring Texas roads and infrastructure have also invested in his presidential campaign.

 �This could explain why Giuliani has spent so much time fundraising in Texas. The monied proponents of the Trans-Texas Corridor, of which there are many, would like to see this man become President.� The big irony here is that Giuliani was opposed to NAFTA, that is, before he became a private business dude with global clients. But Rudy goes lower . . .

Rudy raising his lifestyle

Additionally, Dan Collins and Wayne Barrett pointed out in an Alternet article, Why Rudy Giuliani Can�t Stop Cashing in on 9/11� that �Giuliani had never seemed particularly concerned about money -- he wouldn't have been scheming so desperately for a third $195,000-a-year term as mayor if wealth had been his top priority. But his sudden riches came in handy. His settlement with his former wife, Donna Hanover, in the summer of 2002 called for him to pay her $6.8 million over three years as well as child support. Hanover's lawyers estimated that Giuliani's income in 2002 was $20 million, a little more than half from speaking fees and book advances . . ."

Yet once Rudy got a taste of living large . . ."he quickly adapted to his new lifestyle, demanding first-class flights and accommodations for himself and his posse when he traveled and purchasing a $4 million summer house in the Hamptons for himself and Judy Nathan, whom he married in 2003. The couple also have an apartment on Manhattan's East Side worth more than $5 million, complete with Rudy's Yankee diamond rings displayed in wooden boxes, a lithograph of Winston Churchill above the fireplace, two white Churchill porcelain figures and a Joe DiMaggio shirt encased in glass. . . ."

So it all runs together. Rudy�s profiting from a great tragedy, selling out American interests to foreign interests, major conflicts of interest between his law firm activities and the funding of his potential run for the presidency, etc. A half dozen writers point out a common theme: Giuliani�s insatiable greed as a last step into a bent American Dream. But it goes lower . . .

Giuliani fundraiser charges $9.11 per person

This is the idea of a fan, Abraham Sofaer, presumably okay with Hizzoner, to have a fundraiser at the fan�s Palo Alto, California home. It�s for his old friend, Rudy Giuliani, and Sofaer is suggesting it is the prototype for an �independent, non-denominational grass-roots campaign to raise $10,000 in small increments to show how many individual, everyday Americans support America�s Mayor.� How about that for sacrilegious?

And how about the people who died on 9/11, nearly 3,000 of them? Do we throw in nine bucks and 11 cents for each of them? After all, a buck is a buck, right Abe, you slime. And it goes lower: about how Rudy as mayor didn�t like criticism . . .

Rudy falsely arrested satirical street artist 40 times

Robert Lederer, the street artist, insisted on reminding people of the police and racist state that Rudy created as mayor. And so Rudy had him falsely arrest some 40 times. Read all about it.

But Rudy goes to the bottom of the barrel with the police beating and sodomizing of black man Abner Louima, which occurred on Rudy�s watch as the law and order Mayor . . .

 �Giuliani Time� and the beating of Abner Louima

Wikipedia reports that on August 9, 1997, Louima visited "Club Rendez-Vous", a popular nightclub in East Flatbush, Brooklyn. Late in the night, he and several other men interceded in a fight between �two women.� The police were called and several officers from the 70th precinct were dispatched to the scene. There was a confrontation between the police and the patrons and bystanders involved in the scuffle outside the club. The responding patrol officers included Justin Volpe, Charles Schwarz, Thomas Bruder, and Thomas Wiese, among others. In the ensuing scuffle, Officer Volpe thought he was struck by a �sucker-punch and for reasons that remain unclear, identified Louima as his assailant. Volpe arrested Louima on charges of disorderly conduct, obstructing government administration, and resisting arrest.

 �The arresting officers beat Louima with their fists, nightsticks, and hand-held police radios on the ride to the station. On arriving at the station house, he was strip-searched and put in a holding cell. The beating continued later, culminating with Louima being raped in a bathroom at the 70th Precinct station house in Brooklyn. Officer Justin Volpe kicked Louima in the groin, then, while Louima's hands were cuffed behind his back, sodomized him with a [broomstick], causing severe internal damage to his colon and bladder that required several operations to repair. Volpe then walked through the precinct holding the bloody, excrement-stained instrument in his hand, indicating that he had "broke a man down."

 �Louima's teeth were also badly damaged in the attack by having the [broomstick] jammed into his mouth. He testified to the presence of a second officer in the bathroom helping Volpe in the assault but he could not positively identify him. The identity of the second attacker became a point of serious contention during the trial and appeals. Louima also initially claimed that the officers involved in the attack called him a 'nigger' and shouted, 'This is Giuliani-time' during the beating. Louima later recanted this claim, and the reversal was used by defense lawyers to cast doubt on the entirety of his testimony.� Check that last link for the Giuliani philosophy.

 �The day after the incident, Louima was transferred to the Coney Island Hospital emergency room. Escorting officers explained away his serious injuries being a result of 'abnormal homosexual activities.' An emergency room nurse, Magalie Laurent, suspecting the nature of Louima's extreme injuries were not the result of gay sex, notified Louima's family and the Police Department's Internal Affairs Bureau of the likelihood of sexual assault and battery. Louima was hospitalized for two months after the assault.�

Unfortunately, Rudy�s low-brow behavior began right at home with his pop, a bartender/knee-breaker for collection of mob debts. Add some gangster cousins, one a murderer, and more ties to the mob. But let�s leave that for another day. For now, the above should give you some serious food for thought about whether or not you want this 9/11 profiteer as president.

Jerry Mazza is a freelance writer living in New York. Reach him at

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