The Meaning of Epstein 251

The fascinating thing about what social media calls the Epstein “client list” is that not one of the people on it appears to be a client. I have seen nobody say “I knew Epstein because he managed my funds”. Nor does there seem to be any allegation that people paid him for his services.

So what was happening?

We often fall into the trap of attempting to provide a description of what really happened, and then defending every lacuna, when all we really have to do is point out how completely nuts the official story really is. The maddest and most extreme conspiracy theory in the Skripal saga is the official story. I don’t know precisely what was going down, but I know that it wasn’t that.

Similarly with Epstein. He is described as a “financier” but what did he ever finance? What was the source of his wealth?

Epstein’s assets were worth about US$600 million. They included not one but two separate Caribbean Islands and the very substantial properties built on them. They included very real mansions in New York and Palm Springs.

But you do not only have to look at the capital he accumulated – he did this while spending also at a colossal rate, with a lifestyle more usual in a billionaire than a millionaire. He had a very substantial executive staff, and his residences were fully staffed. He had bodyguards. He ran a private jet. He treated friends lavishly with hospitality and gifts, and maintained sex slaves. How did all this money come pouring in?

If you look at other such figures, like the highly entertaining Allen Stanford or the larger scale Bernie Madoff, you can see where the money came in. There is a bank or investment house situated in physical buildings, with real staff and lots of computers. There are very real aggrieved investors. Who are Epstein’s investors?

The standard answer appears to be Leslie Wexner of Victoria’s Secret, whose finances Epstein did manage at one stage and who reportedly once handed Epstein a limited power of attorney. But unless Epstein robbed Wexner of fully 10% of his net worth, that does not explain Epstein’s magic accession of wealth. Not until 2019, 32 years after Epstein started managing funds for Wexner and 11 years after he stopped, was any claim made by Wexner that Epstein had stolen funds, and then it appears very much a distancing move rather than a serious allegation. It is also worth noting that Wexner sold Epstein the New York mansion, he did not gift it as I have seen falsely reported.

A typical wealth management fee is 1%, generally substantially less when the sums managed for an individual account are very large. If we assess the annual costs of Epstein’s staff and lavish lifestyle at around $20,000,000 – which is very conservative – Epstein would have needed to be managing billions of dollars just to keep going, let alone accrue his own substantial capital.

There just is no evidence that Epstein did have a company managing those kind of funds. Where is the company? Where are the records? Who are the clients?

In the Assange case, we know that the CIA turned to gambling billionaire Sheldon Adelson to organise and fund the spying on Julian in the Embassy through UC Global, a very dodgy Spanish-based security company which was also engaged in illegal activities in South America for the CIA (which are currently legally barred from disclosure).

Security services do operate through the world of shady businessmen. This is not conjecture: it is simple fact.

That Epstein was able, simply by lavish hospitality spending, to tempt many on his “client list” to enjoy his hospitality is hardly surprising. That the offer included sex with notably young girls appears inarguable. This obviously would increase Epstein’s influence on those who accepted the sex. I think it is wrong to consider this a blackmail scam – it is something more subtle than that: a shared bond of complicity, with an underlying frisson of danger.

The risk of exposure in such a relationship is of course mutual. It does not have to be discussed. If what Epstein was doing was as unsubtle as spoken blackmail, he would have been killed much earlier than he was, given some of those involved. Those who seriously threatened the reputations of the Clintons, for example, have been extraordinarily accident- and suicide-prone.

That the security services of both Israel and the United States assisted in funding this activity seems to me entirely likely, and a very simple explanation of the spending way beyond the apparent source of income. Epstein appears to have been an excellent “agent of influence”, well worth the money in the eyes of these states.

Here is a very simple question. How many of those powerful figures on the Epstein lists have ever tried to exert any influence to alleviate the tragic plight of the Palestinians, or acted against the interests of Israel?

Sometimes the greatest insight comes from the simplest of questions.



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251 thoughts on “The Meaning of Epstein

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  • AG

    when was the breaking point that this couple, Clintons, turned to dark highly criminal, probably murderous methods?
    I assume they didn´t have that plan back at Yale.

    Fun fact on Hillary via Wiki Germany: “During her second year of law school, she became a volunteer at the Yale Child Study Center, to learn more about early childhood brain development. She also took on child abuse cases at Yale-New Haven Hospital.”

    • will moon

      Many say the die was cast when Bill Clinton became governor of Arkansas, AG. Apparently this state, Arkansas, has had a notorious, historical, corruption problem along with deep-seated endemic poverty, especially in the more rural counties. The myriad allegations against the couple are legion, but I found the most persuasive was that the CIA was shipping cocaine through a small airport (maybe called Mena?) and the new governor and spouse were faced with the old saw, “if you can’t beat them, join them”. Or the new governor and spouse were happy to get involved, to further their long term political aims. I could make a case for for a young ambitious couple going along with it, on grounds of “national security” and being able to call in a favour in the future – nothing too sinister – allowing the burden of guilt to be shifted to “national security”, whilst fashioning a “false historical narrative” to preserve their liberal self-image. An early compromise, one amongst many, on their road to the top. Pure speculation on my part of course.

      There is an overwhelming literature and commentary on the Clintons and their alleged mis-deeds. I never looked too deeply into it but the Mena/cocaine allegations seemed the most worthy of further attention, if you have a mind.

      The answer to your question, lies in part, in what the questioner’s perception of the political economy of America actually is – from imperfect but improving republic to oligarch-dominated police state. The grimmer one’s vision of America, the worse they get. If it is as Mr Murray sketches above, they are probably deeply compromised psychos who are happy with their lives and would do literally anything to maintain that happiness!

      • AG

        thx will
        perhaps I will find some item following the Arkansas track. Your “narrative” at least operates within the very consistent realm and methodology set out by novelists like James Ellroy, old-fashioned muckrackers or more pop-prone Gonzo-journalists…where such affairs begin early on naturally with limited stakes.
        (Wonder what Hersh would have to say. Or did he ever write about them?)

        • will moon

          Possibly also worth mentioning that William Jefferson Clinton grew up in Little Rock, Arkansas and probably knew the “legends” of the state well – due to the teenage grapevine and whatnot. He became a Rhodes Scholar during his college years, giving him a semester or two at one of the prestigious colleges of Oxford University in England – those places are very posh and allow the intelligence services to “cop a feel” (test or authenticate) the merchandise before investing

          I find it jarring when I think of him walking through the 500 year old cloisters of the university, in cap and gown and then think of the baseball cap and check shirt wearing “Bubba” Clinton on the presidential campaign trail, criss-crossing the dusty South, pressing the flesh in roadside diners or Baptist churches – a real political chameleon

          Iran-Contra was national news during his governorship. According to Gary Webb in “Dark Alliance” Cocaine was flooding the country and the proceeds were being used to arm the Contras. The southern USA was used as a landing zone for the coke and from many hick airports, like Mena, product was distributed into the major cities, like Los Angeles, where Freeway Ricky Ross and his imitators turned it into crack cocaine and the rest is history.

          The eighties generated many urban legends (memes) concerning the widespread scattering of large amounts of cocaine bales, air-dropped all over the South – the phenomenon even got a name “Low-flying Planes”. Several stories emerged in the media regarding people who had found a bale and were exposed as they attempted to monetise their good fortunes but the police and media always mentioned the suspected majority of the bales that were not found. Think of it like a gold rush but falling from the sky, courtesy of those low flying planes!

          • Lapsed Agnostic

            Bill Clinton was raised in Hot Springs AR, not Little Rock, Will. Nowadays, far more cocaine comes in though southern border ports than ever did via low-flying aircraft in the 80’s – along with copious amounts of fentanyl & meth. According to Al Profit on YouTube, you can now buy a kilo of meth wholesale in LA for less than $2000. Wow.

          • will moon

            The eighties created this market; it is now mature. It sets the scene for Clinton’s governorship and indeed, his subsequent presidency. There was, in certain quarters, a gold rush mentality regarding cocaine and Freeway Ricky Ross’ marketing improvement, crack cocaine, leading to the well-known companion of such a mentality: wild brain fevers. To those in the know, palaces are built, concubines harvested and status assured even though the hard work of marketing the commodity and realising it’s value is still to be done.

            So cocaine went mainstream, entering American life, American myth. The Clintons were well placed to observe the fundamental changes in society that such a newly established market would bring, especially if the Mena connect had entangled them.. Interstate, coast to coast, a franchise in every city, every large town. Think of the employment and the profits arising from the inception and maintenance of such a scheme. Think of the social power inherent in this scheme to refashion the image of life in America – both at home and abroad.

            There was an NFL game in Dallas a while ago and before the Cowboys kicked off, the stadium cams picked out a face in the crowd. The announcer chimed in with “Folks, this is the original Cocaine Cowboy”. The crowd went wild in celebratory adulation. The face belonged to a member of a famous OCG, who had just been released from prison for offences concerning the import and distribution of Cocaine.

  • Christopher Crookes

    Oh yeah. Hadn’t thought of that before. Whose funds was he managing? And what did he ever finance? Great observations.
    BTW, small correction: he had a property in Palm Beach, Florida (not Palm Springs, California).
    358 El Brillo Way, Palm Beach, FL 33480.

  • AG

    Netflix will air a drama about the Prince Andrew-BBC interview, starting on April 5th.

    Considering other adaptations about events in British politics in recent years I doubt it will give any meaningful info or dare question power. But nonetheless for the subscribers may be of interest.
    (And for a good piece of entertainment it doesn´t have to be a scoop in itself. Entertainment after all has nothing to do with journalism or scholarship. It works by a totally different set of rules. Which by themselves could convey a deeper truth. If applied properly.)
    “Scoop”by Philip Martin

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