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UFPPC (www.ufppc.

org) Digging Deeper CLI February 28,
2011, 7:00 p.m.

James S. Henry, The Blood Bankers: Tales from the Global Underground Economy
(New York and London: Four Walls Eight Windows, 2003). This book was
reprinted in 2005 by Basic Books, which is part of Perseus Book Group,
acquired the list of the defunct 4W8W in 2004.

[Thesis. Greed, corruption, and often constitute a global system that is designed
disastrous megaprojects have characterized to avoid accountability (35-42).
the financing of post-WWII development in
the Third World.] Ch. 2: Philippine Money Flies. Imelda
Marcos's Manila Film Center (44-46). Wealth
Foreword by Bill Bradley. Bradley calls of Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos (46-53).
Henry's work as an investigative journalist in Under MacArthur, banker Tristan Beplat
the 1980s & 1990s "pathbreaking" (vii). helped saved Japan's prewar zaibatsu banks
"Each chapter stands alone as a separate (53-59). In the Philippines Beplat designed
detective story" (viii). Common themes: an alliance with the elite that "soon became
growth of the underground economy, the rise bloated and corrupt" (62; 59-66). Systematic
of "haven banking," looting of the Third theft (66-81). Corazon Aquino (81-86).
World by "some of the world's most Never-accomplished land reform (87-91).
prestigious financial institutions" (viii-ix). "The Philippine elite . . . still occupies the
country's commanding social and political
Introduction: Where the Money Went. heights" (93; 91-94).
This book is about "the complete collapse of
economic and political development in many Ch. 3: Funny Money. Venezuela's
parts of the developing world since the "corrupt, elitist political infrastructure" (95-
1980s" (xii). As willingness to lend to 124). Hugo Chávez (124-26).
developing countries declined as the Cold
War ended, the globalization paradigm of the Ch. 4: Brazil's Fallen Angels. JPMorgan's
"Washington Consensus" set the conditions "Mr. Brazil," banker Tony Gebauer, convicted
for further aid and debt relief (xiv-xviii), but it in 1987 of bank fraud and tax evasion,
has failed to achieve promised results. (xviii- enriched himself exploiting his wealthy
xxiii). This book goes behind the official Brazilian father-in-law's connections and by
explanation of "shocks, surprises, and giving out loans in return for commissions
indigenous corruption" and describe the (127-77).
"global haven network" needed to
understand "where the money went" (xxiii- Ch. 5: Bleeding Nicaragua. The
xxxii). Sandinistas "at least tried to stand up. When
they did so, they were attacked, and when
Ch. 1: Debt Elephants. Examples of they defended themselves, they were
wasteful, sometimes disastrous, generally portrayed as the aggressors. Ultimately,
corruptly financed dams in Brazil (1-15), the they won a victory of sorts, but it left their
Philippines (15-18), Argentina (18-19), Peru country in shambles. Then their neoliberal
(19), Venezuela (19-20), Mexico, Bolivia, successors came to power preaching reform
Honduras, Panama, Chile, Guatemala (20- and market freedom, and ended up turning
21), Guatemala (21-26), Congo (26-27), the country into a bantustan. Perhaps
Nigeria (27), Kenya (27-30), Lesotho (30-35). Nicaragua will need another revolution" (223;
"[T]here are hundreds more" (35). "All told, 179-223).
about forty-five thousand large dams were
built around the world in the twentieth Ch. 6: Argentina's Last Tango. The role
century, at a total cost of more than $2 of Argentina's "longstanding, incestuous
trillion and a 'displacement' total of 40-50 relationship with foreign capital" in
million people" (36). Debt and corruption Argentina's deterioration since the 1970s
economist) and IBM/Lotus Development (vice
Ch. 7: Banking on Dictatorship. president of strategy). He has two children.
Paraguay (263-68). Chile (268-75). Mexico He lives in New York City and Sag Harbor,
(275-98). NY.

Ch. 8: It's Not About the Oil. Critical [Additional information. James S. Henry
remarks about the U.S. invasion of Iraq (299- wrote for the Harvard Crimson in 1972. He
304). Historical background of U.S. covert has trademarked the expression
action (304-10). Iran and the Shah's "Submerging Markets"; he blogs at
relationship to the Rockefellers (310-21). and tweets at
Effects of the demise of the Shah (321-23). submergingmkt. He now co-writes a column
The Iran-Iraq war and the U.S. role in it (323- for Forbes. He served in relief efforts in Haiti
56). in 2010 and wrote about it on his blog at He favors a
Endnotes. 34 pp. 9/11 Truth Commission.]

List of Acronyms. 2 pp. [Critique. While Henry's book is animated
by a deep outrage at the greed, corruption,
Acknowledgments. "[I]nvestigative and injustice that has characterized post-
journalism now demands a global WWII development in the Third World, and
perspective. The individual nation-state is no while he has done much original research, he
longer the most important locus" (401). presents his material in a haphazard and
Hundreds of friends. undigested fashion. — Henry is a detractor
of John Perkins, who has written a series of
Index. 11 pp. books on this subject. But if we grant that
Perkins neglects the trees in order to
About the Author. James S. Henry is an describe a somewhat allegorical forest,
economist, lawyer, and investigative Henry's is to neglect the real forest he claims
journalist who has published in the New to be mapping for the trees. And yet,
Republic, the New York Times, the despite a rogues' gallery of interesting
Washington Post, U.S. News & World Report, characters like Tony Gebauer (the subject of
the Nation, Fortune, and the Wall Street Ch. 4, the case into which Henry goes most
Journal. Henry is an honors graduate of deeply), the author fails to paint a single
Harvard and Harvard Law School. He was compelling portrait. — This disappointing
one of the original "Nader's Raiders" and has book is also poorly edited.]
also worked for McKinsey & Co. (chief