Thursday, May 12, 2005

Miami Vice: The Mobbed-Up, Money-Grubbing Moralist From Florida

Published in Friday, May 13 edition of The Moscow Times:

The next president of the United States was on the road last week, throwing red meat about "moral issues" to a baying crowd of Bushist Party faithful – while simultaneously trying to cut off medical support for a six-year-old girl his agents had previously tried to kill.

Yes, it was Jeb Bush, governor of the ruling family's Florida dominions, pounding the pulpit, er, podium at a Republican conclave in Georgia. Jeb told the flock that the party must stand for "absolute truth" – something previously associated with religious cults – if they want to maintain their "ascendancy" over the nation, Associated Press reports. "There is such a thing as right and wrong," he declared. Whipped into a frenzy by this blazing revelation, the crowd responded with cries for Bush to ascend to his brother's throne in 2008.

But even as Jeb basked in the bootlicking adulation, his peculiar sense of "right and wrong" was on vivid display in a Florida courtroom. There, his minions are fighting to stop state aid for young Marissa Amora – four years after they sought a court order to let her die following a savage beating, the Palm Beach Post reports. What's more, these same minions – the Department of Children and Families – could have prevented the beating, which left Marissa permanently disabled.

In late 2000, as Jeb was ensuring the "ascendancy" of his brother by – among many other tricks – deliberately slashing thousands of eligible African-American voters from the rolls, Marissa was hospitalized for a month. Doctors and nurses saw telltale signs of past beatings – and witnessed her neglectful mother abusing her in the hospital. They pleaded for DCF to intervene. But the agency – perhaps mindful of Jeb's fierce public championing of "family values" – declined to step in.

Then came the inevitable: a few weeks later, Marissa was back in the hospital, beaten nearly to death, with severe injuries to her brain and liver and several broken bones. Now the DCF took an interest: they rushed to court to obtain a "Do Not Resuscitate" order for the mangled two-year-old. For God's sake, don't let her live, the DCF told Marisa's doctors, because she might "potentially" be left "in a vegetative state."

But the doctors disagreed with the Bushists' expert diagnosis. And so Marissa is still alive today – brain-damaged, crippled, fed through a stomach tube, but alert, talkative, happy, with a new foster mother. Indeed, she would seem to be a shining example of the "culture of life" that we hear so much about these days from certain pulpit-pounding politicians. But to Jeb and the DCF, she's just a "useless eater," a budgetary burden, a mistake to be flushed away. Without state aid, her new family will sink beneath the staggering cost of Marissa's treatment – and the decent life that she's clawed back from the hellhole Jeb left her in years ago will wither on the vine.

'Tis passing strange. After all, this is the same agency – the same governor – that just fought all the way to the Supreme Court to keep the long brain-dead Teri Schiavo existing in a very real "vegetative state." Jeb even found himself lauded on the front page of the New York Times for "cementing his political stature" in the case, with his maneuvers "rooted" in a "deeply-held" religious faith "rather than in political posturing." Yet he was perfectly willing – even eager – to pull the plug on Marissa Amora, and is still trying to destroy her life.

How can this be? For one who lives solely by the "absolute truth," what could possibly be the difference between a crippled, abused, neglected little black girl with no money or connections, and a nice white woman whose case was promoted world-wide by the maniacal, filthy-rich extremist factions that form the base of his brother's "ascendancy"? Since we know from the highest authority that Jeb would never stoop to mere "political posturing," the apparent hideous hypocrisy in his behavior must forever remain an ineffable mystery, like the Trinity, or the 2000 Florida election results.

But then, Jeb has always been the most mysterious of the Kennebunkport Klan. Like the two Georges, he trawled murky waters indeed to make his fortune. One of his business partners, Camilo Padrera, was indicted for drug-dealing, gun-running and embezzlement; but the charges were dropped when the Bush family firm – the CIA – told the FBI that Padrera was their man, fronting covert ops. Padrera then worked Jeb's Washington contacts to steal millions of federal dollars intended to provide housing for the poor. He was convicted of fraud in 1989.

Jeb then hooked up with Miguel Recarey, an associate of Miami mob boss Santo Trafficante Jr., Mother Jones reports. Federal investigators called Recarey's company, IMC, "a criminal enterprise interlaced with intelligence operations." It was in fact yet another front, this time for the Reagan-Bush gang's illegal terrorist war in Nicaragua. Recarey also milked Jeb's Washington connections, diverting millions of Medicare dollars intended for needy patients into the IMF-CIA slush fund. Recarey later fled the country to avoid fraud charges.

In yet another scam, Jeb and a partner used a frontman to wangle a $4.5 million federal loan to buy an office building. When their shill went belly-up, Daddy's federal government obligingly revalued the prime Miami real estate at $500,000. Jeb and pal coughed up that chump change --and kept the building for themselves: $4 million of pure gravy.

Now with just one more step, this mobbed-up, money-grubbing absolutist will have the whole world in his hands. "Right and wrong" mean nothing to such big-time operators; power is their only truth, their only god.