Pakistan Pays Blood Money So We Don’t Have To

As Jim White reported this morning, Raymond Davis has been released after the families of his victims were paid blood money per Sharia law.

We’ve really gotten to bizarro-land when a possible Blackwater contractor has been saved by Sharia law.

But wait! Hillary says we didn’t pay the blood money ourselves.

QUESTION: Okay, we’ll jump right into it. Again, I’ll try not to take up too much of your time. Before I ask about Egypt, I’m obliged to ask you about one other thing – Raymond Davis. Can you explain why, in your view, it was a wise idea in the long term to pay blood money for Davis’s release?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, first of all, the United States did not pay any compensation. The families of the victims of the incident on January 27th decided to pardon Mr. Davis. And we are very grateful for their decision. And we are very grateful to the people and Government of Pakistan, who have a very strong relationship with us that we are committed to strengthening.

QUESTION: According to wire reports out of Pakistan, the law minister of the Punjab Province, which is where this took place, says the blood money was paid. Is he mistaken?

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, you’ll have to ask him what he means by that.

QUESTION: And a lawyer involved in the case said it was 2.34 million. There is no money that came from anywhere?

SECRETARY CLINTON: The United States did not pay any compensation.

QUESTION: Did someone else, to your knowledge?

SECRETARY CLINTON: You will have to ask whoever you are interested in asking about that.

Josh Rogin explains what really happened: Pakistan paid our blood money. And we’ll make it up to them … somehow.

The truth is that the Pakistani government paid the victims’ families the $2.3 million and the U.S. promised to reimburse them in the future, according to a senior Pakistani official.


“The understanding is the Pakistani government settled with the family and the U.S. will compensate the Pakistanis one way or the other,” the senior Pakistani official told The Cable.

The U.S. government didn’t want to set a precedent of paying blood money to victims’ families in exchange for the release of U.S. government personnel, the source said, adding that the deal also successfully avoided a ruling on Davis’s claim of diplomatic immunity — an issue that had become a political firestorm in Pakistan.

Now, this is weird on several fronts. The people in the US who would be really opposed to a blood money payment under Sharia law are the same nutcases who have managed to roll back funding of reproductive health using the argument that all money is fungible. If they’re going to argue that money reimbursed by the government (via a health insurance subsidy) is equivalent to a direct payment by the government, then won’t they argue that money reimbursed to Pakistan by the US is equivalent to a Sharia payment directly?

But I’m also fascinated about this given the government’s success at getting the NYT and others to spike reporting on Davis’ CIA ties. The argument then was that “authoritative” reporting on Davis’ CIA ties would put him at risk. But as I pointed out repeatedly, the people who might put him at risk–Pakistani people–already knew this detail.

Well, if our government is so worried about these threats, then isn’t the revelation that the Pakistanis paid the blood money going to endanger the already fragile Asif Zardari government? Or is this just confirmation that the government was worried about Americans finding out about Davis, not Pakistanis?

In news that is probably unrelated (but who knows!?!?!), Hillary has told Wolf Blitzer she’s not coming back for a possible second Obama term (as also reported by Rogin).

  1. Mary says:

    I liked this:

    The U.S. government didn’t want to set a precedent of paying blood money to victims’ families in exchange for the release of U.S. government personnel

    enog added.

    I guess if you plan on having your pseudo diplomats operating as assassains wander around multiple countries killing people, you don’t want a precedent. If your diplomats were really, you know, diplomats, you might not worry as much about the precedential value.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      That would cost the US billions. Look at the amounts the Brits and Canadians have paid a handful of their citizens as compensation for abuse meted out by the US at its secret and not so secret prisons. Why, setting a precedent like that (the US has long paid tiny amounts to wrongfully killed victims in Afghanistan), the US government might owe Pfc. Manning a few million.

    • Gitcheegumee says:

      And I wouldn’t be surprised if she anointed PJ Crowley as one of her top capos when/if she decides to announce a Prezette candidacy.

      • klynn says:

        Eh. PJ should run on his own.

        BTW, why in the world did we not hear the GOP deficit hawks screaming to not “pay” the money in the form of “make it up to you?”

        And @ 12, that would make a great post. It would be interesting to compare costs of public military VS private contractors and money paid out due to “injuries”. My guess is privatization is costing the tax payer WAY too much.

        Your 11 — would also make a great post.

        • Gitcheegumee says:

          BTW, the mother lode(*) of info re:AIG

          (*) What was AIG “insuring” for all those black budget networks …Oct 10, 2008 … What was AIG “insuring” for all those black budget networks? … AIG insures members of the American Psychiatric Association against liabilility …

 › Discuss – Cached

          International Group: AIG Founded in Shanghai China in …Feb 24, 2009 … Thank goodness we bailed out all those companies and allocated billions to banks . … AIG owns nearly 20% of the People’s Insurance Company of China (PICC). … shanghai-china-in-1919-who-are-we-bailing-out-here/ – Cached – Similar

          According to the second link,AIG has/had major holdings in India,Pakistan and Singapore,too….Who knew?

          • slide says:

            Speaking of a mother lode of negative information regarding Greenberg and AIG I litigated a case against them for a period of in excess of ten years. During that time I assembled a lot of very damaging evidence. I may not know as much as you do about these frauds but I know a lot that is not in the general knowledge of the mainstream. They were certainly [and probably still are] nothing but an ongoiong criminal enterprise.

              • slide says:

                Hi eCahn. The story is way to huge for a diary. A book probably would be more appropriate. The story involves extortion, cover-up’s of criminal activity, judicial bribery, defrauding employees and much other misconduct in order to cover-up widespread and longterm fraud.

                • eCAHNomics says:

                  So write a book. It sounds like a best seller to me.

                  OTOH, don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. If you can figure out pieces to write in smaller bits sooner than a book, carve them out for diaries. It may also help you write a book if you start getting some ‘down on paper.’

                  • slide says:

                    To tell you the truth I have, for some time, been considering a book on the AIG matter. The story has not yet ended. I will consider the diary suggestion. Is there any chance that you would assit me in getting started? I am a bit tech challenged. I used to have your email address which you had supplied a few years back when you were going to host a get-together. If you would consent I would be happy to trade some ideas about possible diaries.

                • Gitcheegumee says:

                  Not to horn in here, but if I may…

                  ProPublica did a stupendous piece on the Defense Base Act a year or so ago.

                  The DBA is law that requires war time contractors to have insurance provided by the government.

                  Well,ACE insurance is one of the top three companies writing this insurance. Guess who is the top offricer in that boardroom?nNne other than Hank Greenberg’s son.

                  I’ll try to locate the piece for you. Very intersting about the costs associated with this.Especially in light of the proliferation of wartime contractees.

                  • Gitcheegumee says:

                    Pro Publica has a host of articles on this subject. Of particular note,imho,is this excerpt:

                    Kucinich Asks AIG Why It’s Denying Claims From Injured Contractors in Iraqby T. Christian Miller
                    ProPublica, May 7, 2009, 4:58 p.m.

                    (ProPublica and the Los Angeles Times spent more than 18 months examining the hidden world of civilian contractor injuries.)

                    Kucinich, chair of the domestic policy panel of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, fired off an angry letter [3] to the company, saying that he was “alarmed” by a joint investigation by ProPublica, ABC News and the Los Angeles Times. The investigation [4] found that the troubled insurance giant routinely denied basic medical care such as psychological counseling and even prosthetic legs for civilians injured in the war zone.

                    Under a federal law known as the Defense Base Act [5], contractor companies are required to purchase workers compensation insurance for employees deployed to a war zone. AIG dominates the market for such insurance, handling nearly 90 percent of all claims in Iraq. Government audits and inquiries have questioned whether AIG and other carriers charged “excessive [6]” premiums for the insurance. Taxpayers ultimately pay for such insurance as part of the contract price.

                    “Apparently, AIG is profiting both by charging unreasonably high premiums to contracting firms and by denying or delaying legitimate claims of civilian workers for medical care and other services needed as a result of war zone injuries,” Kucinich wrote [3].

                    The findings are “all the more disturbing,” Kucinich wrote, given that AIG has turned federal supplicant, with promises of almost $70 billion [7] in taxpayer aid to date. “The Subcommittee is interested in obtaining information from AIG shedding light on why there has been such a high rate of denials and unreasonable delays in processing claims, and why it is reaping such huge profits at taxpayers’ expense,” Kucinich wrote.

                    ProPublicaDec 29, 2010 … ProPublica was a recipient of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize in Investigative Reporting . See a full list of our awards. …
           – Cached – Similar

                    • PeasantParty says:

                      Taxpayers expense! Aren’t they all running at our expense?

                      Sheesh, I don’t know how we are going to keep funding all these corporations and give them tax cuts at the same time. It would be best for the American people to review these budgets and make some hard but necessary cuts. Surely it will bring jobs to those that need them so much./snark!

            • NorskeFlamethrower says:

              Citizen slide:

              “They were certainly (and probably still are) nothing but an ongoing criminal conspiracy.”

              That criminal conspiracy is called capitalism and it’s been goin’ on at least since 1877.

              • regulararmyfool says:

                1877 is way too late.

                The Lincoln administration poured money into the criminal coffers at unimaginable rates during the Civil War. I read a PhD thesis that made a good case that over 60 percent of all contracted war supplies were worthless.

                Looking at the transcontinental railway, the amount of land given to the speculators, even at the homestead discount rate of $1.25 per acre, would have paid for 9 transcontinental railways.

                The Grant administration’s record of corruption was incredible. When the rights to all minerals were simply given to whomever could claim and hold the mineral rights to land, they made astounding fortunes possible. No royalties to the people of the United States.

                By 1877, the new oligarchy was deep into Americans’ pockets for wealth that no one could account for.

                Which reminds me. Exactly where does the money from the old organized crime families disappear to? The Mafia reproduced, where are the children and grandchildren of those known criminals now?

                I strongly suspect that the fortunes made during Prohibition are now washed clean.

                • mzchief says:

                  I strongly suspect that the fortunes made during Prohibition are now washed clean.

                  Further, I had some flashes of insight into a similar thing in reviewing snippets of oral histories and a diversity of other documentary materials related to the before, during and after of the Civil War. The Civil War was simply used by some as a cover and excuse to murder neighbors and take their stuff. Ken Burns’ piece on PBS, The Civil War, digs into that. Then the heist called the “Reconstruction Era of the United States” occurred. Why else– among other things– have Jim Crow laws? There were people still alive from that era in the 1960s and 1970s who remembered slavery and the crimes.

                • earlofhuntingdon says:

                  US purchases of war materiele during the Civil War ultimately gave birth to the Federal Acquisition Regulations. There was no need minutely to define a “blanket” or a “boot” until vendors started selling the government gauze and cardboard facsimiles and reaping millions, while soldiers froze or had their boots and feet disintegrate in the rain.

        • mzchief says:

          Ditto the post recommendations at Gitcheegumee @ 11 and Gitcheegumee @ 12.

          My personal wish list is to see the financial history behind the creation and passing of the 1945 McCarran-Ferguson Act antitrust exemption. I think it is important for folks to see how this wretched system was designed and put into place.

          Re Gitcheegumee @ 12

          One ProPublica.Org article I found is “Injured War Zone Contractors Fight to Get Care From AIG and Other Insurers” (by T. Christian Miller, ProPublica and Doug Smith, the Los Angeles Times, April 16, 2009, 11:25 p.m.):

          Civilian workers who suffered devastating injuries while supporting the U.S. war effort in Iraq and Afghanistan have come home to a grinding battle for basic medical care, artificial limbs, psychological counseling and other services.

          The insurance companies responsible for their treatment under taxpayer-funded policies have routinely denied the most serious medical claims. Those insurers — primarily American International Group (AIG) — recorded hundreds of millions of dollars in profits on this business.

          You can see a whole slew of articles about the largesse bestowed upon private interests via the Defense Base Act here by what I really think of as a shell corporation, the USG. I scanned through the top level of the reports so far and realize I’ll have to have a six pack of Pepto-Bismol on hand while I read it.

          • Gitcheegumee says:

            Dear, get to working on a second six pack of Pepto:

            What really happened the day Porter Goss resigned


            President George W. Bush has bestowed on his intelligence czar, John Negroponte, broad authority, in the name of national security, to excuse publicly traded companies from their usual accounting and securities-disclosure obligations. Notice of the development came in a brief entry in the Federal Register, dated May 5, 2006, that was opaque to the untrained eye.


            Unbeknownst to almost all of Washington and the financial world, Bush and every other President since Jimmy Carter have had the authority to exempt companies working on certain top-secret defense projects from portions of the 1934 Securities Exchange Act. Administration officials told BusinessWeek that they believe this is the first time a President has ever delegated the authority to someone outside the Oval Office. It couldn’t be immediately determined whether any company has received a waiver under this provision.

            The timing of Bush’s move is intriguing. On the same day the President signed the memo, Porter Goss resigned as director of the Central Intelligence Agency amid criticism of ineffectiveness and poor morale at the agency. Only six days later, on May 11, USA Today reported that the National Security Agency had obtained millions of calling records of ordinary citizens provided by three major U.S. phone companies. Negroponte oversees both the CIA and NSA in his role as the administration’s top intelligence official.

            William McLucas, the Securities & Exchange Commission’s former enforcement chief, suggested that the ability to conceal financial information in the name of national security could lead some companies “to play fast and loose with their numbers.” McLucas, a partner at the law firm Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale & Dorr in Washington, added:

      • tanbark says:

        It wouldn’t bother me to see her leave.

        Whether she wants to run or not, she has no chance to become president. The republicans still loathe her, and too many democrats remember her willingness to kiss rightwing butt, to try to get the nomination, to give her another shot at it.

        The bottom line is, that she was, and is, a huge part of the problems we face, not the solution. Having said that, her resignation would monkey-wrench Obama some, and at this point, that’s God’s work. :o)

  2. harpie says:

    Thanks for addressing this, Marcy. I thought of it earlier, but just couldn’t get up the energy.

    And I agree, Jim, “Sure sounds like Hillary has had enough.”

  3. PJEvans says:

    WRT the nutcase and the payoff money: I suspect they aren’t upset because it was the life of a good Amurr’can citizen that was being bought.

  4. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Follow the money. The Pakistani government may have paid the “blood money”. It will be reimbursed in fact by the US through whatever convenient nomenclature and accounting gimmick the two sides agreed on in order for the US to save face. And to think the US government often claims it doesn’t understand the oriental mind.

    It’s the equivalent of the expense reimbursement game played between sales people and accountants called “find the hat”; it’ll be buried so deep in the paperwork no one will know it’s been repaid.

    • Gitcheegumee says:

      Speaking of the Oriental mind,AIG began years ago in the Orient- when it was Star insurance,back in the day when the OSS was the forerunner of the CIA.

      Google up Hank Greenburg and AIG sometime. And while you’re at it,check out ACE and Coral reinsurance,too.

      • Gitcheegumee says:

        AIG also did lobbying for injures war zone contractors under the Defense Base Act. Pro publica did a stunning piece on this.

        Ofcourse Davis has not stated he has been injured, but it would be interesting from an insurance stanpoint if he is considered a contractor, in which taxpayer funded insurance might cover this payoff… or if he is non contractee -but government operative-which means taxpayers cover it,anyway.

  5. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Wow. Ms. Hillary announcing two years ahead of schedule that she’s bailing on ‘Bama. A Supreme Court spot, to keep her from writing her memoirs? A run at opposing ‘Bama in ’12? If she’s intent on running, she won’t wait until ’16. Does she need to slow down and spend a little more time with her family? Or will she replenish the family’s coffers by becoming vice-chair at a NYC investment bank?

    • Knut says:

      My guess is that she is thoroughly pissed that the DOD is now the effective department of State. I doubt very much that the Bahrein meeting was passed through her bureaucracy.

  6. tanbark says:

    Hillary sounds like Ron Zeigler, Richard Nixon’s press secretary…whom Charles McCabe, in his days at the San Francisco Chronical, constantly referred to as:

    “Nixon’s house liar”. :o)

  7. tanbark says:

    As for Hillary leaving now, it wouldn’t surprise me. If she waits much longer she’ll be so covered with Obama-tar that she won’t be able to get it off in time to make a run at him.

    And I know about her disclaimer yesterday, of having no interest in staying on if he wins re-election (I giggle…) or of running for president.

    With the the way that events for Obama are going to spiral out of control, it was practically meaningless for her to say that now. If she says it a year from now, when the spinning bushCo plates that Obama has so diligently sustained (and his own, too) are really starting to crash, then she’ll have some credibility.

  8. cbl says:

    it really could be just wildly coincidental, but have noticed three different voices identified with HRC camp smacking the current administration around within the past several days

    on Bradley Manning on Ratigan’s show

    on U.S. Nuclear Preparedness on Tamron Hall’s show

    on Human Rights – ‘unnamed’ US Human Rights official in Geneva speaking to Egyptian revolutionary and blogger Sandmonkey

    by the third one was wondering if I was looking at a roll out :D

  9. clemenza says:

    Read some interesting bits in the British press that was not touched on here. Independent or Guardian, I forget.

    The families were forced into accepting the money. Their lawyers were thrown in prison.

    One of the victims wives threatened to kill herself if Davis was released She allegedly poisoned herself yesterday and is dead.

    Davis was CIA, not a diplomat. Pakistan believed he was recruiting young men into the Taliban to concoct US propaganda about the Taliban planning to get hold of Pakistan’s nukes. His cell phone logs showed lots of phone numbers to Taliban buds. He also had photos and documents of their nuke facility on him when he was arrested.

    There you go, for what it’s worth.
    Actually, this makes a lot more sense to me than anything the US is blathering about. Gotta keep feeing the need for endless war.

  10. spanishinquisition says:

    “The understanding is the Pakistani government settled with the family and the U.S. will compensate the Pakistanis one way or the other,” the senior Pakistani official told The Cable.

    With the Obama administration going out of their way to deny the US paid, it sounds like the standard definition of money laundering…no surprise coming out of Chicago.

  11. NorskeFlamethrower says:


    Citizen emptywheel:

    And now you know why some of us have been callin’ these people like Mrs. McClinton “fascists” since the beginning. Just like in Cairo, the key in our country in the next two years is where our enlisted military comes down when they come back to no jobs, no education and no families and the corporate mercenary contractors are enforcin’ corporate obedience.

    We can’t lose sight of the target though folks, because the split between the military and the civilian security state is widening and the organizin’ that is goin on state by state accross the country and the connections with the workers democracy movements in the middle east and greater Africa is the variable in the political equation that will determine whether or not there is an “American history” moving forward.


    • greenwarrior says:


      It’s the right timing for us all to stand up and do what we can. I’m particularly working on no more nukes in Texas. Which, of course, takes us immediately to the federal government and the Obama fueled loan guarantees.

      • NorskeFlamethrower says:

        Citizen greenwarrior:

        Anything you do on any issue should be after connecting with others who are connected to others who are… well, you get the picture. The organizing that has begun in Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio and Indiana and that is ongoin’ in California and the Moutain West is goin’ on growth hormones. Gays, workers, unemployed,retired folks, teachers, union labor, Latinos, people of color, the organizin’ has been goin on for years and now it’s time to make the connections.

  12. eCAHNomics says:

    Nobody abroad will ever figure this out. The plausible deniability is so dense that everyone will believe the U.S. had nothing to do with ransoming Davis. /s

  13. PeasantParty says:

    Hilary knew exactly what was going on. More lies to the public on a daily basis. She just did not want to let it slip that the taxpayers are going to have to fork over for a privately employed agent!

    Right now, the house is debating the end of the Afghanistan war. A war that was never correctly declared. The wingnutters are pulling out 9-11 every other word, so I feel it is way past time for the 9-11 shit to come out from hiding and splash all over the pages!

    It is absolutely insane that they continue to spout that we have to protect American interests there, but NOBODY says what the real interets are or how they contribute to our National Security. I’m thoroughly sick of it and tell you all to GET YOUR GREEN ON!

  14. jameshester12 says:

    Yesterday’s Pakistan Tribune reported the family members of the two victims were given green cards to migrate to US

  15. wendydavis says:

    I’ve heard speculation that Davis’s victims were ISI, and the deal was accepted so that none of that would see the light of day in a courtroom. It makes some sense.

  16. leftdcin72 says:

    The Clintons do not even know how to cop a lie, so we have this amateurish performance by the Secretary of State. This clearly required a stonewall and not a lie. Of course, the US agreed to indemnify the Pakistanis and HRC is so weak she does not even know how to present it. She could simply have said: This is a Pakistani matter and I defer to the Pakistanis.

  17. onitgoes says:

    Thanks for the update. Agree that the graphic is, besides being graphic, more than apt.

    Strongly urge that commenter “slide” start writing diaires re AIG in a run-up to a NYT best seller (no snark). Would LOVE to see that. Know not much re AIG; used to work in a law firm that had AIG as big client (small firm; small fish in the giant ocean that is AIG legal work) – but that was just for the “everyday regular” insurance stuff. I knew that AIG was shady, but I would love to learn more. Said law firm lawyers kept encouraging me to invest in AIG secruities, but I always said: I do have *some* standards. They were all rightwing Republicans, so they didn’t want to hear what else I would say (note: there were 2 partners in that firm that would actually ask me questions & listen to the truth I told them. I think they were curious, but they never changed their minds. MONEY talks, as they say).

    HRC will never ever be POTUS. The end.

    HRC on SCOTUS? Maybe but doubtful.

    The Clintons are full of it, but if Hils bails on Obama, she will succeed in some partial redemption of her “name.” But only slightly…. she & Billy-boy are part ‘n parcel now of the PTB and fully responsible for the sh*t that we’re all in. Just saying…

    • slide says:

      Did you know that AIG used to and maybe still does stiff their own attorneys? In the late 80’s and early 90’s Greenberg started a procedure where he would only pay attorney bills once per year and by the end of the year the attorneys would have hundreds of thousands of dollars racked up in billings. AIG would then not respond to the bills and eventually when the heat would get on for payment AIG would come in and tell the attorneys they had overbilled and would negotiate a ‘compromise’ of the bills at 50-60%. Attorneys don’t like suing their own clients espcially one as large as AIG and only occasionally would they get a lawsuit for fees but there are some interesting cases out there.

      I will consider diaries.

      • Gitcheegumee says:

        Some of the best reporting,that goes WAY back, has been done by Lucy Komisar. Her website is Komisar Scoop-and it is worth the trip.

        Here’s a few salient links(and PLEASE do some diaries.I am “tech”nically challenged.)

        Fall of a Titan | | AlterNetMar 17, 2005 … AlterNet / By Lucy Komisar. comments_image – … For years, AIG earnings have beat the analysts by a penny a share, and that has been … – Cached – Similar►

        FINANCE-US: AIG’s Past Could Return To Haunt – IPS ipsnews.netDec 19, 2008 … *This is the first of a two-part series on how AIG helped clients cheat on taxes . New York journalist Lucy Komisar reported on the AIG story … – Cached

        – Since Last Fall, US And UK Launched Fraud Probes Into AIG …Mar 17, 2009 … Lucy Komisar – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Lucy Komisar is a New York City- based investigative journalist. … “AIG’s Offshore ……/since_last_fall_us_and_uk_ launched_fraud_probes_into_aig.php – Cached

      • mzchief says:

        Two months ago many were scratching their heads when Japan announced it was buying Eurozone bonds. After all – why would Europe want to have a marginal buyer (or as the case may be seller) of its debt be the country that is known by all to be the most indebted entity in the world? Of course, it became promptly clear that it was not the Japanese government doing the buying, but mostly its financial companies, with an emphasis on its insurance and reinsurance companies.

        (from “Will The Japanese Earthquake Be The Straw That Breaks Europe’s Back?” by Tyler Durden on 03/11/2011 10:01 -0400)

        If it were up to me, I’d say your timing is great to release what you can substantiate with documentation (and with all proper considerations only you know at this point). We are dealing with some monsters and they’ve already positioned themselves given the devastation in Japan.

        • slide says:

          I have the evidence obtained through discovery, investigation and under oath testimony. The evidence is not in the public domain which can be linked to. Even though some of the evidence was made public in a trial it is not where it can be linked to. That is a problem in considering a diary because I would not want to make allegations that I could not support with the evidence and where it is not located where it can be linked to presents a problem. I do believe I can connect and identify the beginning of the frauds which were started for the purpose to grow the business larger and increase the value of the stock.

          • mzchief says:

            Yes the documents must be snapshots presented online in a way they are clearly unimpeachable exhibits but the site should be a mirrored site for the following reasons.

      • onitgoes says:

        Did you know that AIG used to and maybe still does stiff their own attorneys?

        I did know about their shady billing practices from working in that law firm. Sounded fishy to me. Not sure how much the atty’s pursued AIG re billings, as, at the time, AIG was a big cash cow for our “small fry” firm. Given that the attorneys in that firm were all engaged in their own small town small fry dubious “activities,” they may have been *secretly* applauding AIG for their crooked behavior… as in that old joke about attorneys being able to swim across shark infested waters due to “professional courtesy.”

        Frankly in the time-frame you mention – the late 80s/early 90s – most insurance companies made huge changes in terms of forcing law firms to change billing practices, along with severely limiting some of firms billing practices. AIG somewhat got lost in that overall industry shuffle. It led to some big downsizes in Insurance Def law firms, esp the smaller ones who relied on only a couple of big Ins companies to make money.

        IMO most Ins Companies are criminal rackets, esp these days. But I do believe AIG can be singled out for some specific notice.

        I know that writing is a difficult pursuit, so writing a book can end being overwhelming. Which is why a series of diaries might work well as a starting point.


        • slide says:

          I don’t find writing all that difficult especially once there is an outline or plan. A series of diaries would, however, as you suggest be helpful.

        • slide says:

          “IMO most Ins Companies are criminal rackets, esp these days. But I do believe AIG can be singled out for some specific notice.”

          I agree. I am of the opinion that the criminal racket started with AIG and soon thereafter was taken up by other insurers in order to keep up. I first came across the beginning of the rackets in 1984. My first exposure was with the Travelers. In 1985 I discovered that AIG had actually started their major activities around the beginning of 1984. I do know that AIG’s return on capitol and margins were greater than other insurers during the mid-80’s and thereafter and the other insurers had to cheat in order to keep up. Prior to 1984 I saw little that would indicate that to any great extent widespread fraud was occuring among insurers.

          • onitgoes says:

            Interesting. Well my personal knowledge is limited at best and only anecdotal. I know nothing from the period before the late 1980s, so I really can add nothing to what you observed in the earlier 80s. At that time I was living overseas and completely out of the picture with this kind of stuff.

            But I will say that when I returned to the USA in the late 80s and started working in some Ins Def law firms, the whole BigIns industry seemed fishy. That’s also around the time (I believe; my recollection is hazy and marred by the fact of living overseas for quite a while) that I believe medical costs & health ins costs started their meteoric rise… that was all connected, too. Albeit AIG is dealing in other issues.

          • mzchief says:

            Travellers? *ugh* from my observations by the 1990s when I saw them pushing all liability down to the agent level complete with finger printing just to qualify for the job (apparently the real estate biz started duplicating that model near ’bouts the early 2000s from what I can tell as you see in this document, “Obtaining a Texas Real Estate License“). Such requirements for agents didn’t do squat for preventing the flagrant mortgage foreclosure fraud. Sure did free up the corporate CEOs to do their thing. Talking about setting up your fall guys in advance …

      • mzchief says:

        If you already have a semblance of a manuscript, you finish the book, self-publish then diaries can use extracts of the published work to engage readers.

  18. Gitcheegumee says:

    Just a small point,and then I really must run,but does anyone remember the kerfuffle a few years back over the sale of US ports to Saudi Arabia? The American public was outraged that control would be handed over to furriners.

    Well, after much sturm and drang-guess who bought them…AIG!

    The port of New Orleans was included in that deal…wonder if any Katrina claims involved?

    (Hope all have a safe and memorable St.Paddy’s Day-and a special Irish shout out to the Marcy and Mister.)

      • Gitcheegumee says:

        I cannot recall if that was before or after Katrina,in 2005,mzchief.

        If I had time I’d pursue it further,but the vicissitudes of daily living require me to adjourn for now. Quelle dommage.

  19. readerOfTeaLeaves says:

    Well, if our government is so worried about these threats, then isn’t the revelation that the Pakistanis paid the blood money going to endanger the already fragile Asif Zardari government?

    I had the same question.
    And is this not the same Zardari that was off in his chateau in France while half his nation was underwater in floods?

  20. dosido says:

    I heard the interview with hilary yesterday on the radio and it was like she choked on her own denial of any knowledge of the payments. OK, so the US government technically did not hand the money directly to the families? The next question is do you know who did? She was going to say, imo, I have nothing to answer for but mangled it into “I have nothing to answer to that”. Just incredible.

    • onitgoes says:

      Maybe we should give Hils a little credit (I’m serious) for actually having a smidgeon of “conscience”?? I don’t feel sorry for her or anything; she’s a big girl and chose to be in the game. But let’s face it: this is ALL dirty all the time. Maybe HRC actually felt a smidge of guilt over this?? If so, that would be *somewhat* refreshing, as I don’t think most of these MOTU give a sh*t about anything.

      Just saying… have no real idea. Just seems like she might’ve felt some twinge over this. such a mess. such a tangled web we weave when we set out to deceive… some are better at the deception than others bc some are more sociopathic than others.

  21. Gitcheegumee says:

    A quick note to slide,mzchief,et al.

    If you guys don’t read anything else, you must read this one,from LA Times circa 2000. Outlines the beginnings of AIG and the role of the OSS(later CIA) in the “special insurance unit” of WWII.

    Cornelius Starr’s insurance firm became AIG with Hank Greenberg as an anointed successor;and ,there’s a critical part that Wild Bill Donovan played in the history,also in the piece.Great stuff!

    The Secret (Insurance) Agent Men – Los Angeles TimesSep 22, 2000 … They knew which factories to burn, which bridges to blow up, which cargo ships could be sunk in good conscience. They had pothole counts for … – Cached – Similar

    Just for the heck of it,use your search engine and type in BofA and AIG.(Another bottle of Pepto,pronto.)

  22. Archie1954 says:

    At least Madame Clinton is smart enough to know that if she can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. However she is a gross liar and a cheat and nothing she says can be believed because if her lips are moving then she is lying.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Who says it’s the heat? It might more readily be the menu chosen by the administration.

  23. CTuttle says:

    The Pakistanis are none too thrilled…

    Acquittal Of CIA Contractor Sparks Violent Protests In Pakistan

    Thousands of Pakistanis took to streets in most of the country’s towns and cities on Wednesday to protest against the acquittal of U.S. national, Raymond Davis, accused of killing two Pakistanis, according to local news reports.

    Violent protests against the acquittal were reported in the country’s major cities of Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad. While at least six protesters were reportedly injured in clashes with police near the US consulate in Lahore, protesters in Karachi and Islamabad blocked roads, burned tyres and disrupted traffic.

    The developments came hours after a Pakistani court acquitted CIA contractor Raymond Davis of two counts of murder at a hearing held at a prison in Lahore. The court ruling came after the victims’ families accepted compensation and pardoned the accused.

  24. earlofhuntingdon says:

    I wonder how much of that $2.3 million in bloody money the families will receive. As Signor Ferrari always said to Rick, when he complained about the number of cigarettes lost in transit, “Carrying charges, my boy, carrying charges.”

  25. CassandraBearingWitness says:

    Hil-liar-y is shameless, and not too bright. Time and again she brusquely lies without caring that the truth is already known, or soon would be. I’ll be happy to see the back of the old harridan.