Man Without Qualities

Friday, February 28, 2003

Self Serving Soros

A few years ago it was entirely arguable that the most hated man in the international community was an infamous individual who trafficked against the interests of countries around the world to the fury of foreign governments everywhere: George Soros.

For example, Malaysian prime minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad has accused hedge funds owned by Soros of speculating against regional currencies including the ringgit which led to the 1997 Asian financial crisis: "When he (Soros) said that I was a menace to my own country, actually he is the menace to the world's economy." What his critics called "assaults" on currencies around the world, including the Pound, Italian Lira, Rouble, Thai baht, Malaysian ringget and Japanese yen exposed him and his funds to scathing criticisms, accusations that he was a major threat to the world economy, demonic and "worse than Hitler." International hatred of Mr. Soros at both the international government and individual levels seemed to know no bounds nor did there seem to be any limits to its scurrilousness. That criticism was often excessive, hideous and racist.

It all meant nothing to Mr. Soros, who quite properly kept racking up his billions in profits until he lost his shirt in some very bad currency bets, which caused him to scale back his investment activities.

Mr. Soros is now a full time blowhard who says the President of the United States must do what some foreign governments tell him to do, and govern by international poll results. He also complains that the Bush administration has a "visceral aversion to international cooperation."

Odd. Mr. Soros seems to have had quite a different view of the value of "international cooperation" when he was racking up his billions by blowing up currencies from one end of the earth to the other to the howls of all those international politicians.

I, personally, prefer the original, rapacious Soros, who stuck it to all those governments and currencies as a matter of economic principle - not the current blowhard sent down by central casting to play the phony, make-it-all-better philanthropist role.

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