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2019-03-23 11:15 by Karl Denninger
in Corruption , 191 references
[Comments enabled]  
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Oh do fuck off you old coot.

At the wreckage near Bishoftu in a small pastoral farm field and in the Java Sea off Indonesia lie the remains of the early victims of arrogant, algorithm-driven corner cutting, by reckless corporate executives and their captive government regulators.

You know, that something is 50+ years old in basic design doesn't make it bad, especially when it hasn't failed a bunch of times in those 50 years that could be pinned on some inherent vice.

To the contrary.

Nader had a use at one time.  Then again my family owned a Corvair in my youth and we didn't die.  In fact it was my mother's daily driver, so you can bet I rode in it as a kid more times than I could count, more than a few of them without any seat belt on too.  And she wasn't all that good of a driver either -- certainly not up to racing standards.  Can I tell you about the time she hit a bridge?  No, really, she did.....

Don't get me wrong -- as my other articles point out there's plenty of finger-pointing to do with the 737MAX, with most of it aimed at the MCAS system and its poorly documented characteristics.

I'll even go so far (and have) as to call five-alarm bullcrap on allowing a 0.6 degree control authority to turn into a 2.5 degree one without the entire fault and risk analysis being re-run up and down the line, including the impact on CG and cargo carrying capacity.  After all it's not the authority the pilot may require at cruise altitude and speed (he probably has enough to rip the tail off the plane if he could use the whole thing rapidly there) -- it's down low and slow when that's going to matter.

I can also raise a big stink about the fact I'm quite sure (although I don't have a flight or system manual for the plane) that there are multiple other sources of imputed attitude (angle-of-attack) data available, and as a result it shouldn't be all that hard for the flight management system to know that a sensor is full of crap in short order -- including on the ground at power-up when the angle of attack is (obviously) not some wildly-divergent figure.  Not doing that right up front -- and charging extra to compare data in the air is IMHO flat-out culpably wrong.  Digging back into why the system didn't cross-check as a matter of routine (that is, why someone or a bunch of someones thought it was not necessary or didn't consider it, and whether that was a pure revenue play with excuses paving the road) is something we deserve answers to, because it's something I would have thought of -- and I don't do flight control computers.

And I can make a stink about the fact the the previous generation 737 aircraft (from what I've been told by a couple of people who drive 'em) apparently disconnected auto-trim on a converse manual control input and this one does not (which makes sense; if you go the opposite way the computer has clearly gotten it wrong) so if the pilots (and carriers) were told this plane flies exactly like the old one and relied on that, well, no it doesn't.

I can take an even bigger beef with statistical models used to "predict" failure rates.  I love those lines of BS that are commonly run in the computer world; 1x10^-14 or -15 bit-error rates, for example, or "2 million hours MTBF" that sound like "oh you mean that never happens" -- and since you believe that you never need to make known-good backups too.  Let me know who you are if you buy that bullcrap so I can prepare to bill you at $1,000+/hour to try recover your general ledger and all the data that went into it (never mind the rest of your business data) when you lose it, because you eventually will.  Oh, and may I remind you up front my odds of complete success in that circumstance -- that is, you lose little or nothing and at the end you're mostly ok business-wise -- are about one in five?

Or the reality of computers generally, which is that they run on electrons being stored, moved around and compared, and guess what -- there are these things called cosmic rays that can flip bits without warning in same.  Happen often?  No.  Does it happen?  Uh, yeah, it does.  Can this be guarded against?  In some cases (e.g. ECC memory) but not all (e.g. same hit on a logic gate in a peripheral, etc.)  Do aircraft systems shield against this?  I'm sure they do; military systems do, but is that shielding perfect and are defenses like ECC perfect?  I hope nobody's counting on that to keep them from making smoking holes in the ground.....

None of this, however, changes that a human pilot had quite some time to figure out what was going on or simply decide all the computers are full of crap, I'm turning them off and flying the plane.  At what point was that the right call?  Obviously before the ground was hit, but also obviously neither crew did it.  Is this human-factors engineering, people too damned reliant on technology, shitty training or.... something else?  Hellifiknow but don't you think we better figure it out before we make more smoking holes?  For all we know the second auger job might have ended the same way but not started the same way and there's some evidence of that (e.g. reports of an abnormally high take-off speed; unsubstantiated at this point since the data is not yet available from the FDR.)

And then there's what drove this entire thing, which was carriers demanding "same type" so they didn't have to spend much if any money on retraining and such -- and not just for pilots either, but also for ground crews and related things.  There's a hell of a lot more than just a plane involved in flying a plane, in short, as anyone who has ever been to an airport knows.

Finally whatever you think of the professionalism of the crews involved (that is, are the carriers outside the US hiring competent people, in the main) there's one glaring fact -- Lion Air, the first 737MAX to go down, had a similar fault to what appears to have crashed it the day prior and for inexplicable reasons the aircraft was not immediately put on the ground, the problem reported, including up the line to Boeing and the aircraft tagged out (grounded) until the cause was found.

Might that have led to a resolution path before anyone got killed?

Maybe, maybe not.

But it didn't happen, and that one's not on Boeing since that flight did land safely.

Or is it on Boeing?

This much we do know -- modern aircraft engines, at least, send a lot of data in real time to manufacturers and so do modern aircraft avionics and flight management systems.  Malaysia's lost hull in which we have had reported said system was intentionally disabled, anyone?  So..... was the data sent, to whom was it sent, who if anyone got it on the previous day's flight with Lion Air when they had the computer go crazy but they lived and if someone did get it why didn't they instantly go apeshit when they got it and ground the damned aircraft?

I want an answer to that question too because again -- but for that, if the data was sent and someone got it 300 people would be alive.

Finally don't be so sure US crews are that "vastly" superior.  We now know that a United Express plane missed the runway entirely in Maine.  The original report was that it "slid off" the runway in icy conditions; that turns out to have been wrong.  On the first attempt they went around on a missed approach but on the second they landed between the runway and taxiway on what was probably (if there hadn't been snow!) grass, ripping the gear off the aircraft.  Oops.

So let's do get to the bottom of this and let's not just change the software and call it a day.  Specifically, let's make damn sure that if the MCAS system retains it's 2.5 degree trim change authority that all of the calculations and fault analysis related to that are run with that figure and the 0.6 degree figures are voided, meaning that until that's complete the plane doesn't fly again.

What falls out of that does; it might be nothing, it might be something.  It might even be a bad something, force MCAS to basically go away and with that all the retraining and certification issues come back with the cert as an entirely different type.  Or maybe something less is required -- but let's have the formal verification re-run and know its right.

What I've said before and will say again is that the sort of rot that leads to these incidents doesn't happen in a day or a week.  It takes years, even decades.  Likewise it can't be fixed in a day or a week either.

Thiokol, if you remember, ignored multiple engineers who had told them that the seals on the shuttle booster rocket were unsafe at low temperatures.  But their warnings were ignored, and despite a director for Thiokol refusing to sign the launch recommendation -- he believed the concerns were valid -- NASA launched anyway.  Challenger was destroyed along with everyone aboard.

I suspect there's a decent pile of crap sandwiches to be served here, as I've said before, and I can't come up with any good reason for that control authority deviation to not be run back through the full set of analysis.  That not being done, along with the reset behavior not being part of the analysis, and it appears it wasn't, is inexcusable.

But then again so is not grounding a plane when everyone on board damn near dies and only because there was a competent pilot in the jump seat did they figure it out and successfully complete the flight -- then the same apparent fault kills everyone on board the next day.

Figure it out and nail the responsible parties to the cross -- Nader-style scaremongering garbage serves nobody.

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2017-11-25 15:39 by Karl Denninger
in Corruption , 1008 references
[Comments enabled]  
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There's no reason Elon Musk shouldn't be under indictment right now.

Let's look at the latest monstrosity claim from him: His "truck".

The truck can drive 500 miles on a single charge, which was higher than some analysts had expected. That may mean that, in terms of range, the vehicle could meet the needs of long haul truck drivers.


Tesla will also build a network of Tesla "Megachargers" that will charge the trucks' batteries to a 400 mile range in 30 minutes.

Ok, let's talk about this.

There apparently were eight charging ports, and with a 100kw battery behind each that would be 800Kw.  To deliver 90% of capacity in 30 minutes you'd have to deliver approximately 1.5 Megawatts plus losses; batteries are 80-85% charge efficient during the bulk phase until they reach about 80% of capacity (at which point their efficiency goes down materially) and the electronics to control the charge have loss too -- probably in the neighborhood of 10%.  So we have a 76%, more or less, efficiency on the charge rate which means we must deliver almost exactly 2 Megawatts to the truck for that 30 minutes.

I note that 500 kilowatts has to be dissipated somewhere for that entire period in the truck or the batteries, controller equipment or both catch on fire.  This is a serious problem all on its own that I am not convinced Musk can solve.

Then there is the economic issue.  Musk claims he's going to "guarantee" a 7c/kwh price for all that power.  How he thinks he can do this in a commercial environment where demand meters are used by law is beyond me; the first time a trucker needs to be charged at 4:00 PM on a 95 degree day there will be a very large surprise delivered in the form of the bill.  Never mind that the trucker (or company) will be paying for the 25% losses too; you get to pay for the entire megawatt-hour even though you only keep 75% of it; the rest heats the air.  Apparently Musk thinks that he can simply build "battery packs" to store energy and thus charge them when the power is cheaper.  Ok, that's fine and well, except (1) now you have another 25% loss, stacked (you take one when you charge the pack when "cheaper" and then when the truck is charged) and for each truck's worth of capacity in said battery bank he gets to buy another battery that would otherwise go in the truck, plus another 25% to cover the losses when the truck is charged, plus the electronics to charge, discharge and control that "banked" pack.  Somehow this all is going to "work out" to 7 cents/kwh.

Let me make this clear: No it won't.  If Tesla guarantees that rate to the buyer then Tesla will absorb billions in losses and the more trucks are on the road and the more miles they drive the more money the company loses.

But it pales beside what Musk claims to be able to do when it comes to charging these trucks in the first place.  The average house in the United States consumes about 12 megawatt/hours of energy over the entire year, or about a megawatt-hour per month.  Musk intends to suck twice as much energy from the electrical grid as your house consumes in a month in 30 minutes.

To put some perspective on this that means that one such truck charging will place approximately the same load on the grid as 1,400 houses.  One truck.

What happens when 20 of them show up at the truck stop?  You know they do that today -- they fill their diesel tanks and they're on their way, although they typically only fill said tanks half as often as these batteries will require charging.

So it won't be 20 of them it will be 40 since their range-before-refueling is about half of common OTR trucks now.  Now we're talking about the load of roughly 57,000 additional houses that will be instantly presented to the grid and which the grid must be able to support -- per truck stop or terminal!

Who's going to pay to build all that out and with what will they do so?

It won't be Elon Musk.

I don't believe Musk can deliver this thing at all, nor do I believe he can deliver the Roadster either as the double-size battery pack required to do so (against today's Model S and X) won't fit in the chassis.  So that problem exists too, and it's not an easy one to solve.

Finally, when it comes to the truck there are some other interesting issues related to efficiency.  See, this thing is supposed to be able to couple to any existing trailer.  Ok, fine, but existing trailers are flat-backed and thus have fairly nasty aerodynamics.  You've seen the "trailer tail" things on some of them, I'm sure -- a flip-out contraption that cuts -- somewhat -- the aerodynamic drag generated by the turbulence at the rear of the vehicle. I'm not at all confident the sort of highway range Musk is talking about can be achieved without material improvement in the aerodynamics at the rear and bottom of the vehicle, which means "no standard trailers for you sir!"

That leads to a very large problem; you see flat-back trailers are that way so they can be backed into a loading dock and both loaded and unloaded.  It also makes intermodal (container) shipping possible since a container can be dropped onto a skeleton trailer that locks into the corners of the rectangular container box.  How do you do that if you apply real and effective aerodynamics to the rear and bottom/sides of the trailer?  You don't.  While there are answers to this problem they likely involve a complete renovation of how loading docks are designed and work today, never mind container ships, and that design is literally everywhere from the corner grocery store to the large manufacturing center.  Good luck with shoving that change down every receiving and shipping dock in the nation's budget, never mind the expected gross increase in size such changes would require (e.g. for "side loading" or similar.)  Oh, and since there are length limits on combination vehicles (tractor/trailers, etc) as well you either get to forfeit quite a bit of usable cargo volume or the laws have to be changed to accommodate the materially-longer aerodynamic section of said trailer!

All of the foregoing assumes you believe 800kw of battery is enough.  I'm not so sure.  The math doesn't pencil today on that and I don't see how Tesla can overcome the deficit under any plausible scenario.  Today's diesel truck gets ~8.5mpg, roughly, fully loaded @ 80,000lbs gross (maximum 50-state legal limit.)  Diesel contains ~136,000 btu/gal, so if we take 500 miles (maximum range of said EV truck) we would need ~60 gallons of fuel containing ~8.2 million BTUs if that was a conventional diesel-powered tractor. A modern diesel (with all of its computer controls and transmission) can achieve very close to 40% thermal efficiency in steady-state on-road operation (assuming ~5% gearbox and parasitic loss), which means 3.264 million BTUs have come out the business (driveshaft) end of the engine and transmission when it finishes burning that 60 gallons of fuel.

Musk's 800kw battery only has 2.7 million BTUs of energy in it.  That's 18% short, roughly, but in fact it's worse than that because neither his motors or the PWM controllers for them are lossless, and remember, we've accounted for the diesel's engine and transmission/accessory inefficiency.  If we assume Tesla's electric motors are 90% efficient (possible but unlikely; 85% is more-likely but I'll give him the other 5) and the controller is also 90% efficient (possible) the stacked loss there is 19% so now he only delivers 648kw over that same period of time to the driveshaft(s).

In other words he's not short 18% on energy content he's short a whopping 32%!

I call smiley immediately on him being able to improve the total loss budget by 32% ex engine and transmission -- which basically means through aerodynamics since his truck still needs to roll on tires and the trailers are identical -- so he can't get much if anything on rolling resistance.  That leaves aero and to obtain that sort of gain even on the freeway, say much less in combined-cycle use, would be enormous.

Oh, and the batteries?  They come off the useful load of the truck as well, so on a dollars per pound-mile moved for cargo the electric truck has a further deficiency to overcome.  In short his claimed range and parity level for power is a big stretch right up front!

In the end what we have here is Musk promising to deliver what he can't today, and he's counting on two things to bail him out:

  • Wall Street will continue to give him money on the come in the hope that the technology in batteries advances fast enough for him to be able to actually build the packs and fit them in the vehicles, along with solving the heat dissipation problem during charging that would otherwise cause the vehicle to catch on fire and be destroyed.  Given the relatively short timeline he has set for himself I rate the odds of this happening as perhaps one in a thousand since none of this can be done today.

    AND (not or)

  • The Government will force you to pay for his charging systems by having a gun shoved up your nose and the money extracted from you both for the additional generating capacity necessary and infrastructure upgrades to get that generating and power-delivery capacity to the truck stops and terminals effectively none of which currently have anywhere near that sort of capacity available to them.   Oh by the way many of these terminals are a long way away from existing generating capacity and high-voltage transmission equipment so the build-out cost will be even worse -- by a lot -- than it first appears.  As a conservative guess this is likely to put a 15-30% increase on your home electric bill should any material percentage of the OTR fleet convert.  There are roughly 1.9 million heavy and tractor-trailer drivers employed today; consider what would happen if 500,000 trucks were to attempt to convert to electric drive each of which would require a 2 Megawatt charge for 30 minutes every six operating hours.  There is no possible way to support any material percentage of the current OTR trucks converting to electric power on the existing grid and this build-out will not be paid for by Tesla or the trucking companies if it is attempted -- it will be paid for by you.

Theft as a business model is a crime.  Promising that which you can only deliver via speculative advances in technology and by stealing a large part of your operating cost from others who do not use it ought to land your ass in prison and reduce your company to a smoldering pile of ash.

Then again Hastings did exactly that to America with Netflix and Net Neutrality and Amazon's Bezos does it daily with cross-subsidizing product sales with AWS, including to the Federal Government (which means he steals from every taxpayer to do so), so why shouldn't Musk rob everyone of tens of thousands of dollars in his plan to "build" these trucks right up front, since you didn't lynch Hastings or Bezos when they did it and in fact rewarded both with billions.

This shit has to stop, the firms doing it must be destroyed and their executives imprisoned.

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2015-09-20 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Corruption , 602 references
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I have written a number of articles related to various violent rage-monster style attacks over the years in this column; Newtown, Aurora Colorado and others.  These attacks, including others such as the infamous Columbine High School shoot-em-up-fest, have a common pair of thematic elements:

  • The assailants were all late adolescents or young adults.


  • They were all taking, or were just taking, a particular type of anti-depressant called an SSRI.

Correlation is not causation and the plural of anecdote is not data.  However, the lack of such rage-monster incidents among other age groups, when these drugs are prescribed across the spectrum of ages, is extremely curious -- and troubling.

Now we have data, in the form of two studies. The first deals with an infamous Glaxo study known as "329", which was related to the drug Paxil; the US brought criminal charges against GSK and ultimately a $3 billion fine for its marketing of the drug to children and adolescents -- an "off-label" use that cannot be marketed under US law and which GSK claimed was supported by "remarkable efficacy and safety" demonstrated by this particular study.

The problem lies in what was found when the study data was re-analyzed -- specifically:

But according to the RIAT team, the effect of paroxetine was not significantly different from placebo for any prespecified primary or secondary outcome measure.

In other words the drug did not work.

But it gets worse:

In the CSR, serious adverse events (defined as an event that “resulted in hospitalization, was associated with suicidal gestures, or was described by the treating physician as serious”) were reported in 11 patients in the paroxetine group, five in the imipramine group, and two in the placebo group.

In other words the rate of serious adverse events including suicidal gestures was more than five times higher in the group receiving the drug than those receiving placebo -- on a drug that didn't work.

Has this paper been retracted?  No.  Has anyone gone to jail for what certainly appears to be impossible to explain away as "accident" or even "ordinary negligence"?  No.  How many young people are dead as a result and why aren't the people responsible for this under indictment as accessories before the fact on negligent manslaughter charges?

But if you think that is bad then you're really going to like this -- which also bears on SSRIs:

From Swedish national registers we extracted information on 856,493 individuals who were prescribed SSRIs, and subsequent violent crimes during 2006 through 2009. We used stratified Cox regression analyses to compare the rate of violent crime while individuals were prescribed these medications with the rate in the same individuals while not receiving medication. Adjustments were made for other psychotropic medications. Information on all medications was extracted from the Swedish Prescribed Drug Register, with complete national data on all dispensed medications. Information on violent crime convictions was extracted from the Swedish national crime register. Using within-individual models, there was an overall association between SSRIs and violent crime convictions (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.19, 95% CI 1.08–1.32, p < 0.001, absolute risk = 1.0%). With age stratification, there was a significant association between SSRIs and violent crime convictions for individuals aged 15 to 24 y (HR = 1.43, 95% CI 1.19–1.73, p < 0.001, absolute risk = 3.0%). However, there were no significant associations in those aged 25–34 y (HR = 1.20, 95% CI 0.95–1.52, p = 0.125, absolute risk = 1.6%), in those aged 35–44 y (HR = 1.06, 95% CI 0.83–1.35, p = 0.666, absolute risk = 1.2%), or in those aged 45 y or older (HR = 1.07, 95% CI 0.84–1.35, p = 0.594, absolute risk = 0.3%).

Got that?

About 3% of the young people, that is, age 15-24, who were prescribed these drugs had a violent crime conviction that appears to be linked to them taking the drug -- a rate approximately double that of the next age cohort and double that of someone not consuming the drug at all.

There was no statistical increase, however, in older patients.

Considering the seriousness of violent offenses and the fact that this measures only convictions (and we know not everyone who does an evil thing gets caught or is convicted) this is an outrageous increase in risk, particularly when you combine it with the above study that appears to show that at least one of the drugs in this class is not effective in patients in this age group -- that is, it doesn't work.

So we have here a drug that appears, from these studies, to literally provide no benefit but it does create a material number of rage monsters.

Further, that the drug was worthless in terms of efficacy and was also dangerous was known long ago.

Oh, and it makes the companies that produce these drugs and the physicians that prescribe them billions of dollars too.

Exactly why aren't all of the executives associated with this and those who put together and published the original studies under indictment as accessories before the fact for those who have committed suicide -- or homicide -- while on drugs that appear to be worthless for the condition prescribed?

Come talk to me about how wonderful our medical and judicial systems are and why anyone in America should have respect for either of them when everyone involved in this crap has been brought to justice.

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Well well, what do we have here.

America needs more judges like James Fensom. Yesterday, the Panama City (Florida) adjudicator threw out felony drug charges against alleged pot dealer Jeffery Gage after depositions revealed that the police officers who arrested Gage had broken the law in order to make their case.

In his ruling (which you can read in full below), Fensom called the actions of the Bay County Sheriffs Office "outrageous...shocking, [and] disturbing," and declared that they "simply cannot stand."

From the record the cops not only illegally attached a tracking device to the suspect's car without a warrant but then twice trespassed to change the batteries in it, and worse, lied about it under oath while giving depositions to the defense and intentionally withheld the information from the defense.

That's illegal.  The premise of a public and fair trial requires that you be able to face your accuser, and that inherently includes having full access when defending yourself to the evidence against you.  When law enforcement intentionally destroys data that would tend to incriminate their own behavior and then conceals that fact your rights have been violated.

Why did they withhold the evidence?  That's easy -- it clearly demonstrated their illegal conduct and would have led to the exclusion of the evidence and search, without which the case collapses.

It's nice to see a judge that is willing to hold the cops to the letter of The Constitution.

The lesson?  Do not cooperate with law enforcement -- they will and do lie whenever it suits them right up until a Judge tosses their case.  

There's no reason to cooperate with or assist those who will intentionally violate your right to due process of law.

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Oh, so the banks don't just bilk investors and rip off municipalities, they also help Mexican Gangs run drugs?

This was no isolated incident. Wachovia, it turns out, had made a habit of helping move money for Mexican drug smugglers. Wells Fargo & Co., which bought Wachovia in 2008, has admitted in court that its unit failed to monitor and report suspected money laundering by narcotics traffickers -- including the cash used to buy four planes that shipped a total of 22 tons of cocaine.

The admission came in an agreement that Charlotte, North Carolina-based Wachovia struck with federal prosecutors in March, and it sheds light on the largely undocumented role of U.S. banks in contributing to the violent drug trade that has convulsed Mexico for the past four years.

That's nice.  Guns and ammunition cost money - lots of it.  Getting that money requires some means of transporting it and "laundering" it.  For that, we turn to the largest financial institutions in the world, who, it turns out, have never been prosecuted for these felonious acts.

Wachovias blatant disregard for our banking laws gave international cocaine cartels a virtual carte blanche to finance their operations, says Jeffrey Sloman, the federal prosecutor who handled the case.

Blatant disregard?  Sounds like something you'd say at a sentencing hearing, right?  Well, no....

No big U.S. bank -- Wells Fargo included -- has ever been indicted for violating the Bank Secrecy Act or any other federal law. Instead, the Justice Department settles criminal charges by using deferred-prosecution agreements, in which a bank pays a fine and promises not to break the law again.

No Capacity to Regulate

Large banks are protected from indictments by a variant of the too-big-to-fail theory.

Indicting a big bank could trigger a mad dash by investors to dump shares and cause panic in financial markets, says Jack Blum, a U.S. Senate investigator for 14 years and a consultant to international banks and brokerage firms on money laundering.

The theory is like a get-out-of-jail-free card for big banks, Blum says.

Theres no capacity to regulate or punish them because theyre too big to be threatened with failure, Blum says. They seem to be willing to do anything that improves their bottom line, until theyre caught.


Facilitating drug-running is just one small part of it.  There's also ripping off municipal governments, such as the Jefferson County sewer deal in Alabama.  There's bid-rigging in the GIC market.  And, of course, there's laundering money for violent Mexican drug cartels, who used that money to buy automatic weapons (no, not from America - from China, Venezuela and even from corrupt Mexican law enforcement officials!) with which they then shoot civilians and government officials who refuse to be corrupted.

Oh, and it's not just Wachovia accused in this story.  It's also Western Union and Bank of America.

Workers in more than 20 Western Union offices allowed the customers to use multiple names, pass fictitious identifications and smudge their fingerprints on documents, investigators say in court records.

In all the time we did undercover operations, we never once had a bribe turned down, says Holmes, citing court affidavits.

Very impressive.

To make their criminal enterprises work, the drug cartels of Mexico need to move billions of dollars across borders. Thats how they finance the purchase of drugs, planes, weapons and safe houses, Senator Gonzalez says.

They are multinational businesses, after all, says Gonzalez, as he slowly loads his revolver at his desk in his Mexico City office. And they cannot work without a bank.


And we have a banking system that, in the United States, has insulated itself from having to obey the law or be prosecuted for violating the law by threatening the government.

Henry Paulson and Ben Bernanke in 2008, remember?  "Tanks in the streets, martial law"?

Dateline September 21, 2008

Gee, it's not enough to steal from ordinary Americans, it's not enough to rip off state and city governments, it's not enough to rig bids in the municipal bond markets, we must sit still while these institutions literally make possible funding criminal gangs that are committing murder.

There's a name for this folks.

Formally this sort of thing is supposed to be called "Operating A Continuing Criminal Enterprise", or "OCCE":

The FBI defines a criminal enterprise as a group of individuals with an identified hierarchy, or comparable structure, engaged in significant criminal activity. These organizations often engage in multiple criminal activities and have extensive supporting networks. The terms Organized Crime and Criminal Enterprise are similar and often used synonymously. However, various federal criminal statutes specifically define the elements of an enterprise that need to be proven in order to convict individuals or groups of individuals under those statutes.

The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) statute, or Title 18 of the United States Code, Section 1961(4), defines an enterprise as "any individual, partnership, corporation, association, or other legal entity, and any union or group of individuals associated in fact although not a legal entity."

The Continuing Criminal Enterprise statute, or Title 21 of the United States Code, Section 848(c)(2), defines a criminal enterprise as any group of six or more people, where one of the six occupies a position of organizer, a supervisory position, or any other position of management with respect to the other five, and which generates substantial income or resources, and is engaged in a continuing series of violations of subchapters I and II of Chapter 13 of Title 21 of the United States Code.


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