23 March 2009

Why I don't trust the government


A funny thing happened trying to learn about something completely different

Back in 2007, I was working at Fidelity and I was trying to get in touch with a co-worker who I had a worked with on a project several years before. The co-worker was Steve Ganis, the Vice President in charge of Fidelity's Anti-Money Laundering Office. There was only 1 problem, I couldn't find him. He wasn't answering voicemails or emails and he wasn't at his desk. Then, I overheard a conversation in the next cubicle about him so, I asked "what going on with Steve?"

The reaction I got could only be likened to the one the emperor must given the small child when asked why he was naked. The response I got back was veiled to say the least. But the short answer was that Fidelity was being sued by a former employee and that Steve had been named in the suit. I also learned that there had been a "big article in the paper" and, as such, Steve had been reassigned (a lovely bit of corporate double-speak) until the matter was resolved.

So, I did a Google search to try and find the article using "Steve Ganis investigation". I didn't find the article I was looking for, but I did find something else. What I came up at the top of my search was the following link: The Mystery of the "lost" Mena Report, Gray Money: the Continued Cover-up.

Being someone who likes hearing conspiracy theories, I printed out the story and it promptly sat on my desk for about 3 months before I got tired of looking at it and decided to bring it home to read it. Once I started, it was hard to put it down. Written in 2001, the article's purpose was to publish the results of an independent investigation by the Arkansas Commission into the activities going on in Mena, Arkansas in the early to mid-1980's and expose their findings. It also documented their attempts at having Congress and other "trusted authorities" investigate the matter.

As far as my interest lay, the bottom line was that Steve Ganis was working for the House Banking Committee (HBC), the Congressional authority that was investigating the matter, and had been leading their investigation. However, the report that he produced was never published, even years after the investigation had concluded. It also said that Steve Ganis had left the HBC, whereabouts unknown.

I didn't think much of it at the time. However, a couple of months later I heard that someone else had been assigned take over Steve's position and I decided to look into it further. This time, I printed out a new copy of the report and printed out articles under the related stories. The first one in particular, Gray Money, drew me in like a moth to a flame. The article drew a very clear line between Bill Clinton and AIG with the Arkansas Development Finance Authority the middle man.

Putting the information provided, or alluded to in the articles, together, one could see that George Bush (Bush I as I like to call him) and Bill Clinton had been working together for some time. Basically, Clinton allowed Bush and the CIA to use Mena as the focal point for a CIA-sponsored drug smuggling operation and in return they would launder the money through Clinton's vehicle of choice. Furthermore, they would direct the federal investigators to turn a blind eye to Clinton's other endeavors which required money laundering.

As for Steve Ganis, it turns out that the events that precipitated the lawsuit were much ado about nothing, boilerplate disgruntled former employee who decided to sue instead of find another job.