by Roger Stone I like Arianna Huffington. I know her a bit from our mutual days in Washington. She is a gutsy woman who has become a major force in public opinion through sheer persistence and determination. I admired her bid for Governor of California. It takes courage to enter the arena. She's also not above changing her views when the facts change. She is quick on her feet, knows her facts and is always good television. I appreciated her posting my 'TEN BEST DRESSED' list for 2009 on the Huffington Post last January. With Mr. Blackwell having moved on to that great fitting room in the sky, someone had to pick up this tradition. When the Huffington Post news team reported that former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer had told the HuffPost in a E-Mail that all AIG E-Mails should be obtained and investigated, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/19/aig-autopsy-eliot-spitzer_n_398323.html, in an re-examination of the Insurance giant's collapse, I had to fire off an E-Mail to Arianna. Prior to the Huffington Post jumping on board, Spitzer's rehabilitation was largely a product of the Washington Post Corporation: Newsweek, the Washington Post and Slate on-line, all safe places where interviewers can be counted on not to ask Client #9 the tough questions about his illegal activities while he was the highest law enforcement official in the land.
Dear Arianna: Eliot Spitzer calling for the release and investigation of all internal E-Mails regarding the fall of AIG as reported in the HuffPost is ludicrous. This is the same Eliot Spitzer who stonewalled attempts by the New York State Senate Committee on Investigations and the New York Commission on Ethics to obtain the E-Mails of Spitzer and his top aides surrounding the abuse of power in his using the New York State Police to spy on his political opponents. Likewise, Spitzer attempted to prevent his top aides from testifying. This man's hypocrisy knows no bounds. The idea of former New York Governor and Attorney General Eliot Spitzer criticizing the AIG bailout is ridiculous; Spitzer is responsible for the economic condition of the company for which they needed a bailout. In fact, Spitzer's crackdown on Wall Street caused the firms to increase leverage because he took away the ability for them to make money in research and underwriting, and they looked for other ways to make money; like securitizing subprime mortgages. In fact, if Spitzer hadn't removed Maurice "Hank" Greenberg from AIG, the company would never have crashed. Greenberg was a much more conservative investor, and had tighter risk management rules that were suspended by the company only after Spitzer drove Greenberg out over charges that proved bogus in the courts. The billion dollar investment in credit default swaps which were not hedged brought the company and the economy down. This insurance was written only after Greenberg was forced out and never would have been written under Greenberg's risk management rules. Thus, Eliot Spitzer is partially responsible for the current economic crisis, not some Boy Scout crying an early warning. This is as typical of his reign as Attorney General where he blackmailed companies by press release, threatening to destroy your company's value unless you pled to infractions you hadn't actually committed. Most saw the futility of winning in court after Spitzer had destroyed their company, so they settled. When cases actually went to trial most were dismissed or those Spitzer apprehended were acquitted. Spitzer's assault on the New York Stock Exchange's Ken Grasso, Ken Langone and Greenberg, while not also pursuing NYSE board member Carl McCall for fear of offending key African American political leaders, stands out as the kind of perverted justice Spitzer pursued. Spitzer made baseless charges against Greenberg, drove him from the company, and set the stage for AIG's collapse. Above all, while Spitzer was chasing-but not catching-guys on Wall Street, the Madoff scandal, where Spitzer does have jurisdiction, went on under his nose. Likewise, the New York State Pension scandal where an associate of Spitzer's fellow Democrat Alan Hevesi's, raked off millions. Surely you cannot believe that Spitzer's avoidance of prosecution for money laundering and violation of the Mann Act (that is, transporting a woman across state lines for the purposes of prostitution which a New York State Supreme Court Justice was convicted and jailed for in 2009) while the Madam who booked him prostitutes, spent four months on Rikers Island, is anything less that sexist. Now the Huffington Post tells us Eliot Spitzer is contemplating a political comeback by running for State Comptroller. Believe me: Arianna, you will learn things in that campaign about his treatment of women that will offend you. You will learn things about his abuse of power that violate all of your beliefs about the correct role of government in a free society. I strongly urge you not to abet this criminal's attempt at rehabilitation. Cordially, Roger Stone