The transfer was small compared with the estimated $1.2 billion in customer funds still unaccounted for more than seven weeks after MF Global collapsed. The bankruptcy trustee for MF Global’s U.S. brokerage unit has said recovering money from the company’s trading partners would be easier if counterparties knew they were accepting funds belonging to customers. It isn’t clear how MF Global responded to J.P. Morgan’s Oct. 29 letter. The letter hasn’t been publicly released by regulators or investigators.
The letter indicates that J.P. Morgan officials knew the money came from segregated customer accounts, because it specifically asked whether the transfer of funds from customer accounts was compliant with regulations. Customer accounts can contain both customer and firm funds. On Oct. 30, or the day after the letter was sent, MF Global alerted regulators to a shortfall in customer funds. It filed for bankruptcy protection on Oct. 31.
The EPA’s unconscionable war on fracking, but particularly on companies that produce fossil fuels. I can not understand how it’s in the USA national interest to not exploit our own natural resources and remain dependent on foreign oil.
Welcome to this week’s Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean. As the title indicates, it’s been a year since Mel Zelaya was thrown out of office. He and his teddy bear are also gone from his tin foil-lined room at the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa.
Today’s podcast at 11AM Eastern:
The UN Office for Drugs and Crime’s report
Lula’s adventure in Tehran smacks of the overconfidence of a politician who basks in an approval rating of over 70% and who sees the Iraq war and the financial crisis as having irreparably damaged American power and credibility. But the United States is still Brazil’s second-largest trading partner. Although some American and Brazilian officials are keen to prevent ill-will over Iran from spoiling co-operation in other areas, it nevertheless may do so. The United States Congress may be even less willing to support the elimination of a tariff on Brazil’s sugar-based ethanol, for example.
Lula wants the UN reformed to reflect today’s world, with Brazil gaining a permanent seat on the Security Council. But by choosing to apply his views on how the world should be run to an issue of pressing concern to America and Europe, and in which Brazil has no obvious national interest, Lula may only have lessened the chances that he will get his way.
PUERTO RICO Students approve strike pact. Back in the olden days when I was a student at the UPR they were striking, too, but no one slept in cute little tents on campus. Either way, the strikes are a total waste of time.
The report launched by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) expresses concern about Venezuela due to the existence of cells of armed insurgent groups, such as the Bolivarian Liberation Front and civilian militias supported by the government.
The saccharine conventions of showbusiness were thrown out of the window last week, when the Hollywood actress Maria Conchita Alonso was collared by paparazzi and asked if she was pleased about her former co-star Sean Penn’s recent Oscar victory.
“He’s an amazing actor. I can’t take that away from him,” she said of Penn, who worked with her on the 1988 cop film Colors. “It’s just that he has no clue at all what’s going on in Venezuela. He’s been praising Hugo Chavez, who is a dictator and a killer. He should shut up about what he doesn’t know.” Alonso, who was raised in Venezuela, was apparently upset by a glowing article that Penn had written for The Nation magazine about her homeland’s charismatic but increasingly dictatorial left-wing President.
In normal circumstances, Alonso’s interview might have been brushed under the carpet. But for the first time a Hollywood insider was saying what much of America thinks: left-wing luvvies in the movie business should wake up to the real nature of their hero. For one thing, Mr Chavez throughout his career has criticised Hollywood as a medium of American “cultural imperialism”. And Penn, who since his Oscar-winning performance in Milk has become a vociferous gay rights activist, is also open to allegations of hypocrisy.
The article came out in the UK’s Independent, which, unlike US newspapers dares point out,
The Venezuelan leader’s political hero, Fidel Castro, imprisoned and executed gay men, and once declared: “In this country [Cuba] there are no homosexuals.”
Benicio, unlike Maria Conchita, continued to display his characteristic cluelessness:
On Thursday, Benicio del Toro made headlines when he took tea with Mr Chavez at his palace in Caracas. The actor, in Venezuela to promote Steven Soderbergh’s film Che, told journalists that his host was “nice” and that he’d “had a good time”. Del Toro’s comments caused apoplexy on the political right in the US, but lately even Democrats have been perturbed by Mr Chavez’s intolerance of media criticism and political opposition.
Not that Benicio and Penn are alone: Danny Glover’s already fed at the petrodollar trough, receiving $18 million to make 2 movies; Oliver Stone’s making a biopic of Chavez, and Harry Belafonte schoomzes with Chavez as often as he can. Maybe they should all get together and make an Ocean’s 11 with Hugo as the casino owner?
Readers of this blog know Maria Conchita has spoken the truth about Venezuela in the past.
LA GRITA, Venezuela (AP) — Aboard the presidential jet, a grinning Hugo Chavez put a hand on Sean Penn’s shoulder, praised his acting and added: “And he’s anti-Bush!“
The Venezuelan president reveled in his role as host to the Hollywood star as they flew across the country Friday and traveled through the countryside in a military jeep with Chavez at the wheel, stopping to greet cheering supporters.
Can you spell Potamkin Village, Sean?
But let’s not spare the anti-American rod, lest it spoils the child, since there are poorly-veiled threats to make,
Enlivened by his conversations with Penn, the socialist president lambasted the U.S. government for “destroying the world” with war and warned of brewing economic troubles, saying Washington should do much more for its own poor.
“There could be a revolution there,” Chavez said. “We’ll help them. The United States must be helped because the United States is going to implode.”
But back to feeling the loooove,
Penn’s star power was eclipsed by Chavez, who honked to flag-waving admirers along the road through a mountain valley and stopped to kiss children and clasp hands with screaming women.
Luckily there is a star who’s got the eggs to stand up to Venezuela’s Communist-in-chief:
Cuban-born actress Maria Conchita Alonso, who grew up in Venezuela, said Penn’s visit lends support to a “totalitarian” leader who wants increasing control of society—a charge Chavez denies. Speaking by phone from her home in Beverly Hills, California, Alonso said she respects Penn as an actor, but hopes he “comes to his senses and he realizes that he’s being used.”