Whenever financial swindlers prosper at the expense of investors or a bank jiggers interest rates to bugger their competitors or tax evaders flee fiscal crises or rent gouging petrol monarchies recycle profits or oligarchs pillage economies and drive millions to drink, drugs and destitution they find a suitable secure sanctuary in London. They are wooed and pursued by big British realtors eager to sell them multi-million dollar estates, trophy properties and landmark mansions.
Pompous and pretentious British academics convince them to send their progeny to six digit private schools, promising them that when they graduate they will be speaking English through their nasal cavities, rolling their r’s and mastering the art of eloquent but vacuous elocution. British governments, Labor, Liberal, and Conservative, in the best and most hypocritical legal traditions, fashion the legal loopholes to attract the biggest and wealthiest parasites of the world.
Crime Wave Sweeps City of London: … //
… London: Pimping for Parasites
The global economic crisis is a boon for London’s high end real estate corporations, as overseas millionaires and billionaires, tax evaders, political raiders of the public treasury, abandon pillaged economies and pour billions into mansions and penthouses. Super-rich rentier monarchists from the despotic Gulf States join Russian commodity speculators and new rich Chinese sweatshop owners in bidding up London properties in prestigious postal codes in Belgravia (Ebury Street, Eton Place, and Eton Square) Knightbridge, Mayfair (Park Street). Corpulent Russian oligarchs and pious Saudi royalty loll in country estates in, Hertfordshire, Herefordshire and Cheshire overlooking their elegant English gardens and enjoy the purring and caresses of their very upscale British courtesans, in one or another of the two dozen bedrooms. The British government’s tolerance and open minded attitude to Russian and Albanian gangster oligarchs, whose bloody ascent to wealth can match any Sicilian godfathers, greases the wheels for the rise of what the Financial Times chooses to call, the real estate ‘industry’, bankrolled by the financial ‘community’ and aligned with the insurance ‘investors’.
The predators international, take their afternoon tea at 4 p.m., sherry at 6:30 p.m. They are entertained by the gossip of Her Majesty’s Court and the Queen’s Anniversary Celebration and indulge in the sporting life (soccer teams over polo horses). They cultivate a taste for culture. Accompanied by Oxbridge experts they shop for “collectibles” – paintings at Ordovas on Saville Row, Richard Nagy on Old Bond Street, Frank Auerbach at the Malborough, sculpture in Jean & Luc Baroni at St. James and jewelry shops for a Vacheron Constatin.
The Gulf oil oligarchs, who gouge exorbitant rents from energy poor African and Asian countries and Chinese and Indian billionaires who exploit hundreds of millions of Asian female factory workers and deny migrant workers residence, rest and health insurance, spent $9 billion pounds ($14.4 billion dollars) on central London houses in 2010-2011.2 Between 2011 and mid-2012, 60 percent of the buyers in the prime central London market were foreign millionaires and billionaires.2
The Cameron-Clegg regime demands sacrifice, austerity and belt tightening in Greece, condemning millions to destitution, suicide and desolation, even as it encourages the top 1% of Greek kleptocrats to “invest” and reside in central London’s exclusive neighborhoods. According to the IMF 56,000 Greek plutocrats are tax evaders.3 According to a US study of their annual income, $28 billion Euros ($36 billion USD) is unreported.3 Most of which is deposited in London banks or ‘invested’ in luxury property in Mayfair, Belgravia or thereabouts. If the illegal accounts were taxed or better still used to pay for the foreign debt, it would conform to Greek law, reduce the deficit and social cuts and perhaps revive the economy. But respecting Greek tax laws would mean fewer commissions for the real estate moguls at Savells, Marsh and Parsons, Knight Frank; less private accounts for HSBC and Barclay’s; less sales at the upscale art galleries; fewer patrons for the high end ‘escort’ agencies of both sexes.
Crime pays. FIRE4 plays. Public hospitals close. Tuition rises. Private clinics and schools catering to the overseas oligarchs and their British partners flourish. Where’s “the crises”? Not to be found in central London, nor in the City; nor in the legal system; nor in the Special Forces. Bank swindlers flourish. Judicial litigation among oligarchs pays. Dirty mercenary wars in Afghanistan, Libya, and Syria and elsewhere provide lucrative contracts for retired Colonel Blimps– in the best traditions of empire.
The crises? That’s for the other England outside of the City, with the wrong postal codes. Where workers crowd emergency rooms, where the poor await evictions in what were once council houses and where those who study and work can look forward to debt and dead end jobs.
(full text and Notes).
Anti-Corruption Handbook for Development Practitioners, on Weitzenegger.de, Oct. 8, 2012;
The World We Want 2015.org/en.Homepage (in 66 languages), Homepage/The Process: The World We Want web platform is a joint initiative between the United Nations and Civil Society … ,
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(found via Weitzenegger.de/featured stories, see Weitzenegger/Contact).