Arms Dealers, Chicago, Middle East and the Donald

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To gain top security clearance, the background investigations are rigorous and rightly so. The investigations are designed to ensure there are no nefarious relationships, events or people of which embarrassment and extortion are made of and most of all to ensure no future compromises are possible.

Can Donald Trump pass these investigations?

Phillydotcom: Donald Trump is another rich guy who doesn’t have it so easy. Trump, of course, is the real estate developer who, while he might not have the biggest fortune in the world, has one of the loudest. He brought his yacht, the Trump Princess, into Washington last week where commoners could gawk at it.

He bought the boat last year from Adnan Khashoggi, the arms dealer who is his chief rival for the title of World’s Most Obnoxious Zillionaire, for a mere $30 million. He did have to spend $10 million fixing it up, but everyone agreed it was a steal.

 

This is not your everyday run-of-the-mill millionaire’s yacht. It is roughly the size of Cleveland. It makes the president’s yacht, Sequoia, parked across the way, look like a dinghy. It has, among other things, two marble waterfalls in the formal dining room, which also features suede-covered walls and leather-tiled ceilings. It has a master bedroom suite with a walk-in closet, a leather barber chair, a sauna and a 600-pound pop-up bar made of solid onyx. It has a movie theater, a swimming pool, an exercise room, two 30- foot speedboats, as well as gold fixtures in the bathrooms. Oh, I almost forgot, also a discotheque with a marble dance floor. Also 210 phones.

Adnan Khashoggi enjoyed life beginning in the 1970’s. He created great wealth being an arms dealer and several years later, his fortune collapsed do to the scandals of BCCI, Bank of Credit and Commerce International, while he was also part of the Iran Contra Affair and played in investment circles that included Donald Trump and Ferdinand Marcos. A Saudi, Adnan’s father was an opportunists who was a vehicle dealer selling trucks toMuhammad bin Ladin, Osama’s father.

Then there was the time Trump financially screwed TV game show owner and entertainer, Merv Griffin. There is something about Trump applying Chicago tactics, a city that so enamored Trump he thought the ‘windy city’ would be a great place for another home. Additionally, Trump was looking for re-financing for his real estate project in Atlantic City. Banks and investors told Trump he could not use junk bonds to do so. ‘Oh, I would not do that, ever to keep the other investors’. Don’t look now but he did use junk bonds and the first missed debt payment came do and it was late. The junk bond market tanked.

In 2001, Chicago was booming or was it? Seems some seedy people saw opportunity.

Will big names, big egos, bring big trouble?

July 20, 2001|By David Greising.

ChicagoTribune: We now know Donald Trump and Marvin Davis are coming to town with big real estate deals. Mark my words: These won’t be the last out-of-gas 1980s egoists to make their move on Chicago.

Throwback titans are like ants that way: If you see one, there’s bound to be a whole colony.

Keep your eyes peeled and your hands on your wallets. Before you know it, Ivan Boesky will be betting on takeovers from deluxe office space in Marvin Davis’ new building.

Michael Milken will show up, too. He’ll reassemble his famous X-shaped trading desk inside Trump’s tower.

The top floor, no doubt. Which, given the expected skinniness of the soon-to-be Trump Spindle Chicago, should be about the size of an isolation cell at Cook County Jail. This should make Milken feel very much at home.

Both Milken and Boesky are felons banned from the securities business. I’ll bet you’re thinking they can’t possibly set up investment shops in the Trump and Davis spaces.

But no worry. Problem solved. If the Securities and Exchange Commission comes after them, Boesky will simply call his old defense lawyer, Harvey Pitt, who now just happens to be President Bush’s nominee to run–you guessed it–the SEC.

Watch for Marc Rich to revive his commodities business here. The Hunt brothers–best remembered as the men who killed the Chicago Board of Trade’s silver pit–will resume trading the not-very-precious metal.

Boone Pickens will make a comeback. He’ll resume haranguing CEOs and launch hostile takeovers against Ameritech, Amoco or First Chicago.

Wait a second. Those big names from the 1980s didn’t survive the mismanagement of the 1990s. Pickens will have to find a new target. Motorola, maybe.

High-finance hangers-on will come flocking in, too.

Milken will need a valet. This means Bill Farley will have a job again. After his embarrassing bust-out at Fruit of the Loom, Farley gets a second chance to be a Milken-made man.

And if Milken chooses to abandon the natural look and resume wearing the toupees he favored during the 1980s, he’ll need an experienced wig dresser. Someone who really knows fashion. Revlon’s Ron Perelman would be just the person for the job.

The Davis name will lure some tarnished glitterati from the days when the one-time wildcatter owned 20th Century Fox. Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis will sell Davis on a new restaurant concept: “Planet Washed Up Movie Star.”

Former Beatrice deal maven Jim Dutt will work the grill. John Sculley can sell the Pepsi. Former R.J. Reynolds chief Ross Johnson will probably even try to sell cigarettes.

It won’t all be gravy and glory for Trump and Davis. Merv Griffin will stop by–not to star in a TV show, but to rag on Trump for bankrupting the Taj Mahal Casino after he wrestled it away from Merv.

And another Davis, Al, will come into town. The longtime Oakland Raiders owner hasn’t seen a winning Raiders team since the 1980s, but that won’t stop him from chiding Marvin Davis for his failed effort to bring an NFL team to Inglewood, Calif.

Before you know it, junk bonds will trade in the Board of Trade’s pits. It will get so raucous the FBI will send undercover agents to investigate again. And just as they did in the 1980s, they’ll come out full of suspicions but mostly empty handed of criminal convictions.

And this time, the feds will be fighting some new top-notch legal talent. Attorneys who know the way the government thinks when it goes under cover into the pits. Dan Webb and Tony Valukas will be the go-to lawyers on the traders’ defense side.

This is the life that awaits Chicago now that Davis and Trump are coming to town.

Mayor Daley has embraced the idea. He met with Trump and emerged visibly awed by the glint of Trump’s celebrity. Or maybe that was just the glare from the top of Trump’s head.

Trump says he may even make Chicago his second home. Consider the way Chicago could become with Trump and Davis in town, and you’ve got to wonder: Is that a promise, or a threat?

Upon Trump’s announcement for the Oval Office, he filed this 92 page financial disclosure.  There are countless companies in Trump name variations, some successful, others not at all but all over the globe including Turkey, Qatar and Azerbaijan.

In closing, one final point needs to be made. Where does Trump have his products made? He has been outsourcing since 2006.

WashingtonExaminer; Donald Trump has been offshoring the production of Trump-brand products since 2006, despite his unrelenting criticism of companies that send jobs overseas, according to a new report.

The report comes less than a week after Trump was caught defending outsourcing as “not always a terrible thing” and sometimes “a necessary step” in a 2005 blog post unearthed by Buzzfeed News.

Trump-brand products have been outsourced to China, Japan, Honduras and Brazil as well as European countries Norway, Italy and Germany since 2006, according to data collected by ImportGenius, a company that gathers information related to exports and imports.

Everything from slippers and men’s shirts to ballpoint pens and “Trump body soap” has come to the U.S. from Asian and South American countries, the data shows. Trump has previously admitted that clothes such as ties, which belong to his menswear line, are manufactured in China and Mexico. Full article here.

 

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