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24/02/2017 ConnoisseurofChaos|CityJournal

FROM THE MAGAZINE

ConnoisseurofChaos
The dystopian vision of George Soros, billionaire funder of the Left

Stefan Kanfer

W henthedustwasclearedandthedebrissweptaway,hestoodrevealedasHillary
Clintonsmostgenerousbillionairedonor.Yethisnamerarelysurfacedduringthe
presidentialcampaignandthatsgenerallythewayhelikesit.DarkMoney,Jane
Mayersbookaboutcovertpoliticalfunding,referstotheKochbrothersmorethan
300timesinitsexcoriationoftheradicalrightbutmentionsprogressiveicon
GeorgeSorosjustsixtimes;threearefootnotes.

Oneoftheplanetsrichestmen,hispastmarredwithcrimesandmisdemeanors,the
86yearoldbillionaireskateson.Morethanadecadeago,hemovedhisfinancial
headquarterstoCuraao,ataxfreehavenintheCaribbeandesignedformonied
hypocriteswhotalkonegameandplayanother.Theplaceisnotbulletproof;on
occasion,Soroshasbeenaccusedandevenconvictedofinsidertrading.AFrench
courtfoundhimguiltyofthatcrimeandleviedafineof$2.3million.Intheparlance
ofthebillionairesclub,thatwassmallchange.Investigativejournalists,adwindling
cadre,showlittleinterestinhim.Theyprefertoscrutinizesafer,softertargets.

Iftheytookevenacursorylook,though,theywouldseethatSorossglobalreachand
influencefaroutstripthoseoftheKochbrothersorotherliberalbogeymenandthat
underlyingitallisavisionbothdystopianandopportunistic.Themainobstacletoa
stableandjustworldorder,Soroshasdeclared,istheUnitedStates.Ergo,that
constitutionalrepublicmustbeweakenedanditsalliesdegraded.TheSorosian
worldorderoneofopenbordersandglobalgovernance,antitheticaltotheideals
andexperienceoftheWestcouldthenassumecommand.

G eorgeSoroshasbeenanescapeartistsincehisadolescenceinBudapest,when
Nazioccupiersgavehimhisfirstlifelessons.Untilthen,theSchwartzfamilylivedin
alargehouse,locatedonanislandintheDanube.Gyrgysmother,Elizabeth,was

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thedaughterofaffluentsilkmerchants.Hisfather,Tivadar,wasaprominentlawyer
andeccentric;ingoodweather,hecommutedtohisofficebyrowboat.

Butallwasnotasitappeared,evenbeforethepredationsoftheThirdReich.Anti
SemitismrandeepinEasternEurope,andHungarianJewslivedonaknifeblade,no
matterhowlargetheirbankaccounts.ThesecularistTivadarneverattended
synagogue,buthehadadevoutbeliefinEsperanto,theartificiallanguagethathe
andotherdisciplesbelievedwouldeventuallybecometheworldstongue.The
TowerofBabelwouldberazed,andnationalismwoulddisappear,alongwith
dialects,localattitudes,andnationalboundaries.Butthatworldlayinthefuture.For
thepresent,Jewishidentitywouldhavetobepaperedover.

Accordingly,thefamilychangeditsnametoSorostosoar,inEsperanto.In1944,
thepersonificationoftheHolocaust,AdolfEichmann,cametoGermanoccupied
HungarytoadministratetheFinalSolution.ButTivadarhadanticipatedhim.By
then,hehadpurchasedfalseidentitydocumentsforhimselfandthefamily.He
bribedagovernmentofficialtoadoptGyrgyandtestifytoinvestigatorsthatthe
boywashisChristiangodson.

NowcamethefulcrumofSorosslifeandcareer.Thebureaucratwhohousedteenage
GyrgywasassignedthetaskofconfiscatingJewishlandandproperty.Withtheboy
intow,hewentfromhousetohouse,makinginventoriesforNaziofficers.Itsunfair
sweepinglytocondemnthoseindividuals,JewishandGentile,who,willinglyor
unwillingly,sometimesparticipatedinevilinordertosurvive.Still,mostofthose
whodidescapetheHolocaustweretormentedbypangsofremorseandsurvivors
guilt.

NotSoros.In1998,60Minutesprofiledthemanwhosestockmarketmanipulations
weremakingnews.CBSinterviewerSteveKroftaskedhimabouthiswartime
experiences:

KROFT:Youwatchedlotsofpeoplegetshippedofftothedeathcamps.

SOROS:Right.Iwas14yearsold.AndIwouldsaythatthatswhenmycharacter
wasmade.

KROFT:Inwhatway?

SOROS:Thatoneshouldthinkahead.Oneshouldunderstandandandanticipate
eventsandwhenwhenoneisthreatened.Itwasatremendousthreatofevil.I
mean,itwasaaverypersonalexperienceofevil....

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KROFT:Imean,thatsthatsoundslikeanexperiencethatwouldsendlotsof
peopletothepsychiatriccouchformany,manyyears.Wasitdifficult?

SOROS:Notnotatall.Notatall.Maybeasachildyoudontyoudontseethe
connection.Butitwasitcreatednonoproblematall.

KROFT:Nofeelingofguilt?

SOROS:No.

KROFT:Forexamplethat,ImJewishandhereIam,watchingthesepeoplego.I
couldjustaseasilybethere.Ishouldbethere.Noneofthat?

SOROS:Well,ofcourseIcIcouldbeontheothersideorIcouldbetheonefrom
whomthethingisbeingtakenaway.ButtherewasnosensethatIshouldntbethere,
becausethatwaswell,actually,inafunnyway,itsjustlikeinmarketsthatifI
werentthereofcourse,Iwasntdoingit,butsomebodyelsewouldwould
wouldbetakingitawayanyhow.AnditwasthewhetherIwasthereornot,Iwas
onlyaspectator,thepropertywasbeingtakenaway.SotheIhadnoroleintaking
awaythatproperty.SoIhadnosenseofguilt.

A fterthewar,attendingtheLondonSchoolofEconomics,Soros,hisnamenow
Anglicized,wasbeguiledbythewritingsofKarlPopper(190294).TheViennese
bornprofessordevotedhislifeandworktowhathecalledtheOpenSocietyaplace
freeofsuchtribalaffinitiesasreligion,nationalism,andtraditionaleconomic
formulas.Buthealsodenounced,asamonumentofhumansmallness,Platos
conceptofthephilosopherking.Whatacontrast,Popperwrote,betweenitand
thesimplicityofhumanenessofSocrates,whowarnedthestatesmanagainstthe
dangerofbeingdazzledbyhisownpower,excellence,andwisdom....Whata
declinefromthisworldofironyandreason...downtoPlatoskingdomofthesage
whosemagicalpowersraisehimhighaboveordinarymen;althoughnotquitehigh
enoughtoforgotheuseoflies,ortoneglectthesorrytradeofeveryshamanthe
sellingofspells...inexchangeforpoweroverhisfellowmen.

WasSorosbeginningtoconfronttheimplicationsofthesebigideas?Nooneknew
perhapsnotevenSoroshimself,ashestrovetofindaplaceinpostwarBritain.Alas
forthenewgraduate,thefinancialworldprovedtobeaclosedsociety.Noone
seemedinterestedinhissheepskinorhismultilingualabilities.Finally,hefound
workattheLondonbasedmerchantbankSingerandFriedlanderbecause,hestated
inararemomentofselfdeprecation,themanagingdirectorwasafellowHungarian.

In1930sHollywood,whenformerMagyarslikeAlexanderKorda,PeterLorre,Leslie
Howard,andBelaLugosireignedsupreme,somanyoftheircountrymenappliedfor
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positionsthatonefilmstudioputupasign:ItsnotenoughtobeHungarian,you
mustalsohavetalent.Soitprovedin1950sLondon,wherethenewhirecouldnot
restonhisBudapestconnections.Hehadtodemonstrateagiftforcreatingrevenue
andhedid.Withinafewyears,hehadmasteredthecraftofarbitragingmaking
profitsbytradingdifferentcurrencies.Asbefitamanwithhisbackground,healso
promotedEuropeanstocks,thenwinningfavorwithU.S.institutionalinvestors.
ThroughSoros,theygainedopportunitiesinthenewCoalandSteelCommunity,
soontobecometheCommonMarket.

By1959,SoroshadrelocatedtoNewYorkCity,thefinancialnexusoftheWest.He
continuedtobeasalariedemployeebutahighlevelone.Hetoldcolleaguesthathe
plannedtoworkforthreemoreyearsenoughtoaccumulateapersonalfortuneof
$500,000.HewouldthenreturntoEnglandtostudyphilosophy.Thateventnever
occurred.Hisegokeptgettingintheway.IadmitthatIhavealwaysharboredan
exaggeratedviewofmyselfimportance,helateradmitted.Toputitbluntly,I
fanciedmyselfassomekindofgod.

Inthe1960s,thefanciedgodconceivedhisTheoryofReflexivity.Despiteits
Einsteinianovertones,theconcepthadagreatdealofmumboandnotalittlejumbo.
Essentially,itstatedthatthosewhoobserveaphenomenonlikeeconomicsor
politicsbecomeapartofwhattheyreobserving,andthusrisklosingtheir
objectivity.EconomicarenasWallStreet,forexampleareparticularlyvulnerable
toforcesthathavelittletodowithempiricalevidenceorhistoricalprecedent.
Knowingthis,thecunningwitnesscanmakeawhackinggoodprofitifhestays
abovethefray,thetipsters,andthesmartmoney.

Therecessionof1973providedoneofmanyexamples.Afteryearsofwild,bullish
ascents,themarketseemedimpervioustobusinesscycles.Thenitcrashed.Investors
waitedforthepredictedreboundandwerestillwaitingfiveyearslater.The
resignationofRichardNixon,theoilshortages,theseizingofAmericanhostagesin
Iran,andtheineptresponseofJimmyCarterallputpaidtothegoodtimes.Andyet,
afewspeculatorsprofitedfromthesedisasters;Soroswasoneofthem.

Soroswentontoenjoymanyothertriumphs,andnonedidmoreforhisimagethana
killingmadeacrossthepondtwodecadeslater.Hehadgoneoutonhisownbythen.
AwarethattheBritishgovernmentwasproppingupthepoundsterling,heandhis
associatesacquiredmillionsofpoundsandthenshortedthecurrency,bettingthatits
worthwoulddecrease.Aftersomebadpressandsomebloodypoliticalinfighting,
PrimeMinisterJohnMajorcaved,withdrawingthepoundfromtheEuropean
ExchangeRateMechanism(ERM).Thepoundplummeted,andSorospocketedmore
than$1billion.Retireesonfixedincomessawtheirpensionsdiminishedandtheir
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savingswipedout.ButthehumanconsequenceshadnoeffectonSoros;indeed,he
gainedinstature.Inhighfinancecircles,hewasthemanwhobroketheBankof
England.

Thesubprimemortgagecrisisofthe2000sofferedanotheropportunity.Houseshad
beenovervaluedandunderfinanced.Thedayofreckoningoccurredin2008.Itledto
thedownfallofLehmanBrothers,thefailureofFannieMaeandFreddieMac,andthe
nearcollapseoftheentireglobalfinancialsystem.Again,Soroscamesmiling
through.Imhavingaverygoodcrisis,hetoldareporter.

Soroshadlongsincebecomewealthybeyondavarice.Twolargealimonies(he
marriedforathirdtimein2013)andtheeducationofhisheirs(likeDonaldTrump,
hehasfivechildren),pluslavishhomesinWestchesterandonLongIsland,scarcely
madeadentinthefamilyfortune,whichcontinuedtogrow.Butalongtheway,it
occurredtoSoros,asithadtomanyanotherfinancialgiantbeforehim,thatmere
gettingandspendingwerenotenoughforamanofhiscolossalselfmeasurement.
Heputhissonsandotherprincipalsinchargeofhiscompaniesandhedgefunds.
Thereafter,liketheownerofbeachfrontagewhoselandscapeisobstructedbytrees,
hedevotedhimselftocuttingdownwhateverblockedhisworldview.

Soross Open Society Foundations was clearly devoted


to the eradication of national sovereignty.

H ispresidentialcandidatelostin2016,butthissetbacklikelywontslowSoros
down.Hispoliticalactivismportfolioiswelldiversified.Backingorganizations
dedicatedtosocialagitationandchangeforchangessake,Soroshascaused
tsunamisofupheaval,intheUnitedStatesandaroundtheworld.

Afewcasesinpoint:lastAugust,DCLeaks,agroupofadroithackers,gotintothe
Sorosfilesandreleasedthem.Perhapsthemostnotoriousofthedisclosures
concernedSorossOpenSocietyFoundations,namedinhonorofSirKarlPopper.
Underneathitsloftyrhetoric,theorganizationwasclearlydevotedtotheeradication
ofnationalsovereignty.AkeyOpenSocietypaper,hackedinitsentirety,described
theSyrianrefugeecrisisasanopportunitytoshapeconversationsaboutrethinking
migrationsgovernance.Translation:useagitproptofloodEuropeandtheU.S.with
evacuees(amongthemsomeprobableterrorists);maketheoldbordersand
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institutionsirrelevant;and,intheprocess,createaworldliberatedfromtherestraints
ofconstitutionalism,Americanexceptionalism,freemarketcapitalism,andother
obsoleteisms.

OneofSorosslongstandingtargetsistheStateofIsrael.Providingfundingfor
groupsdevotedtoBDS(boycott,disinvestment,sanctions)againsttheJewishStateis
onlypartoftheequation.AccordingtoDCLeaks,Sorosgavemorethan$2millionto
Adalah,anindependenthumanrightsorganization.Asamatterofpolicy,Adalah
demandsthatgovernmentsseverdiplomaticrelationswiththeonlydemocracyinthe
MiddleEast.Sorosalsodonatedmorethan$1milliontothePalestinianmediacenter
Ilam,whichregularlyaccusesIsraelofethniccleansing.ThoughtheOpenSociety
Foundationsbiasesareobvious,itsmembersprefertoworkunderdeepcover,as
oneoftheleakeddocumentsdescribes.Foravarietyofreasons,wewantedto
constructadiversifiedportfolioofgrantsdealingwithIsraelandPalestine...aswell
asbuildingaportfolioofPalestiniangrantsandinallcasestomaintainalowprofile
andrelativedistanceparticularlyontheadvocacyfront.

PrintreporterswereenlistedinthecauseofpropagatingtheSorosmindset.As
recordedbyWikiLeaks,Sorosoperatives,determinedtoshapemediacoverageof
eventsinUkraine,wereinstructedtoselectjournalistsfromthefivetargetcountries
(Germany,France,Spain,Italy,Greece)andofferthemlongstayreportingtripsin
Ukraine.Ratherthanspecifywhattheyshouldwriteabouttheyshouldmake
suggestionsforarticles;weretainavetoonstorieswethinkarecounterproductive.
Suggestionthatweliaisedirectlywithjournaliststodetermineinterest.

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Soros bankrolls a wide array of protest groups across the country, including MoveOn.org, shown here
demonstrating outside Senator Charles Schumers ofce. (MARK APOLLO/PACIFIC
PRESS/LIGHTROCKET/GETTY IMAGES)

I ntheUnitedStates,Sorosbankrollsabroadrangeofpoliticalandculturalcauses.
OneistodestabilizetheRomanCatholicChurchintheUnitedStates.In2015,he
dedicated$650,000forthepurposeofshapingPopeFrancissU.S.visit,usingleft
leaningCatholicgroupstopromotegaymarriage,abortion,andphysicianassisted
suicide.LeadingtheeffortwasHillaryClintonscampaignmanagerJohnPodesta,a
selfprofessedCatholic.BillDonohue,outspokenpresidentoftheCatholicLeague,
vainlycalledforPodestasdismissal.HeisfomentingrevolutionintheCatholic
Church,creatingmutinyandistotallyunethical,Donohuesaid.Heisthefront
manforGeorgeSorostocreateahostofphonyantiCatholicgroups.Thesearenot
justbadcomments,assomehavesuggested.Thesewordsareorchestrated,
calculatedanddesignedtocreatefissuresintheCatholicChurch.

AnotherSorosfavoriteisBlackLivesMatter,theradicalprotestgroupdedicatedto
thepropositionthatpoliceareinherentlyracist.Workingthestreetswithincendiary
rhetoric,atoddswiththetruthaboutblackonblackcrime,BLMhashelpedfoster
depolicing,asHeatherMacDonalddescribesit,inhighcrimeurbanareas.In2015,
afterdaysofriotinginBaltimoreinresponsetothedeathofFreddieGrayinpolice
custody,anOpenSocietyFoundationsmemoexcitedlycommentedthatrecent
eventsofferauniqueopportunitytoacceleratethedismantlingofstructural
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inequalitygeneratedandmaintainedbylocallawenforcementandtoengage
residentswhohavehistoricallybeendisenfranchisedinBaltimoreCityinshaping
andmonitoringreform.Threestraightacquittalsofpoliceofficersinvolvedinthe
matterlefttheprosecutionscaseinshredsbutmadenodifferencetotheOpen
SocietyFoundations.Ithasdonatedatleast$650,000toBlackLivesMatterand
pledgedmoreassistancetoantipolicefactionsacrossthecountry.Theseactivities
promptedthefatherofoneoftheDallaspoliceofficerskilledduringaBlackLives
MatterprotesttosueSoros(alongwithotherindividualsandgroups)forinspiringa
waronpolice.

Sorossopenbordersobsessionscanbeseeninthe$2millionhegavetoopponentsof
MaricopaCounty,Arizona,sheriffJoeArpaio,anoutspokencriticofillegal
immigration.Thesheriffsinfluenceonthenationalconversationaboutimmigration
hasbeenpoisonous,saidaSorosspokesman.Arpaiofiredback,callingthe
billionaireafarleftglobalistwhowastryingtobuyalocalrace.Thesheriff
failedtorideinonTrumpsNovemberwagon,though,andSorosenjoyedoneofhis
fewelectionnightvictories.Sorosalsospentmillionsbackingliberalmindeddistrict
attorneystheyallopposedjailtimefornonviolentdrugoffendersinLouisiana,
Mississippi,Florida,Illinois,NewMexico,andTexas.Someofthesecandidateswon;
mostlost.

Theemphasisonleniencyfordrugoffendersisnoaccident.Twodecadesago,Soros
begananardentcampaigntodecriminalizemarijuanaandotherillegaldrugs,which
hepromotedasanissueoffairness:Whyshouldabusersbearrestedandimprisoned
whenwhattheyreallyneededwascounselingandrehabilitation?Tothatend,he
backedtheLindesmithCenter,adrugpolicyinstitute,whichservedasSoross
echochamberonmattersconcerningproscribedsubstances.ImsureLindesmiths
desiretotakeusintonihilismandchaosandtojamourhospitalemergencyrooms
withmoreusershassomeusefulpurpose,scoffedaspokesmanforGeneralBarry
McCaffrey,duringhistenureasBillClintonsdrugczar.Sincethen,Alaska,
California,Colorado,Maine,Massachusetts,Nevada,Oregon,andWashingtonhave
alllegalizedmarijuana,andHeads,aprodrugmagazine,enthusiasticallydubbed
SorosDaddyWeedbucks.ButdataareconfirmingwhatskepticslikeMcCaffrey
hadarguedallalong:thatlegalizationservesasaforerunnertomoredruguserather
thanless,moreemergencyroomvisitsratherthanfewer,increaseddangertothe
healthoftheyoung,andaconsequentweakeningofthesocialfabric.

A sthepostpresidentialfeverabates,Sorossworkcarrieson.InaNewYorkCity
luxuryhotel,Sorosrecentlyhuddledwithotherdevastatedoperativesintheso
calledDemocraticAlliance,includingformerHouseDemocraticleaderNancyPelosi,
MassachusettssenatorElizabethWarren,andCongressionalProgressiveCaucus
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cochairmanKeithEllison.AccordingtoPolitico,theydiscussedstrategiestocombat
PresidentelectTrumpsterrifyingassaultonPresidentsObamasachievements.
NotallDemocratswerepleasedwiththeoccasion.TheDAitselfshouldbecalled
intoquestion,saidoneattendee.Youcanmakeaverygoodcaseitsnothingmore
thanasocialclubforahandfulofwealthywhitedonorsandlaborunionofficialsto
drinkwineandreadmemos,astheDemocraticPartyburnsdownaroundthem.

WiththethreatthataTrumppresidencyposestotheirpower,Sorosandhisallies
figuretobeevenmorevoraciousforinfluenceandsecrecy.Thisisnotimetoletup.
YetSorosmustoccasionallythinkbacktotheprofessorwhosewritingshecherry
picked,usingwhatwasdigestibleandabandoningwhatcouldnotbestomached.
Whenhedoes,onetocsinislikelytocausediscomforteventothismostinsensitiveof
plutocrats:Poppersreferencetothefigurewhosemagicalpowersraisehimhigh
aboveordinarymen.PopperwarnedaboutthistypelongbeforeGeorgeSoros
pervertedSirKarlsteachingsandcrownedhimselfaphilosopherking.

Stefan Kanfer, a CityJournalcontributing editor, is the author, most recently, of The


EskimoHuntsinMiami.

TopPhoto:ThemainobstacletoastableandjustworldorderistheUnited
States,saysSoros.(TOMASMUNITA/APPHOTO)

52VanderbiltAvenueNewYork,NY10017 | (212)5997000

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