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Thursday, March 13, 2008

THE US MONEY GESTAPO

THE US MONEY GESTAPO

Having been a lifelong loyal Republican all my life until recently when I bolted the Grande Old Party to become a Libertarian, I never thought I would ever say that the US government practices Gestapo tactics, especially when it comes to what one does with one’s money. If you think, when you work hard all your life and accumulate a modicum of money, that the money is yours, forget it. It does not really belong to you, especially when the government watches how you spend your hard earned money.

Concerning the problem now facing Eliott Spitzer, let us examine how he went down. Now Spitzer has a lot of money – the family estimated to be worth in excess of 500 million dollars. Nevertheless, the money belongs to him, ostensibly so. But the US government watches closely how he spends his money. The fact that prostitution is illegal is besides the point because what is illegal in one state is not illegal in others or even other countries.

What Is Prostitution ?

In the US a man may go into a bar, meet a girl, and buy her dinner. Afterwards, they both go either to her or his place and engage in sex. This is acceptable behavior and happens every day of the week. The fact that the man who might have paid for her dinner has already paid for the sex he received seems to elude us. But offer the girl real money, all of a sudden she is a prostitute and an illegal act has been committed. In the US, it is the transfer of money which makes the sexual encounter an illegal crime and an immoral act.

What Is Immoral?

I am reminded that years ago my mother who was doing a man’s job in a leather factory in Peabody, MA, would bet in what was then called “the nickle pool.” She called me one day asking me to give her numbers assigned to medicines. I told her I did not understand. She proceeded to tell me that the week previously she watched a TV movie about the life of a doctor who discovered a medicine. He assigned a number to the medicine. She played the number in the nickle pool and won 800 dollars. I told her the number was 606. The movie was about the life of Paul Ehrlich, a German medical scientist and winner of a Nobel prize, who in 1910 announced that he had discovered compound 606, which he called Salversan, the first arsenical-containing drug able to treat syphilis. Paul Ehrlich believed that for every disease there was a “Magic Bullet” – a term which he coined – which could be used to treat it. I remember the movie well and Paul Muni played the part of Paul Ehrlich. Unfortunately, I could not provide my mother with more numbers.

I digress. The point of the story was the fact that the churches and the government were preaching the ills of illegal and immoral gambling and how the immoral gangsters were stealing money from the people and ultimately food from their children. Let us now propel ourselves 20 plus years later. Now the State sponsors gambling with their Lotteries. Gambling is no more illegal, but, more importantly, it is not considered immoral. Oh, please save me from this double talk. In fact, in the state of Maryland there is an ad: “You’ve got to play to win.” Morality is absolute. If it is immoral to kill another individual in the 1940's, it is immoral today. If gambling is immoral in the 1940's why not so today just because now it is a state-sponsored operation?

Prostitution is legal in Nevada. Why is it illegal and immoral in New York? It is because the State says it is so. Now when has the State been the authority in matters of morality?

To return to the Spitzer ordeal. He was transferring money to an organization, the Emperor’s Club, who was being investigated by the Federal authorities for illegal prostitution. I am sure that the Emperor’s Club has been added to some list of “bad guys,” probably under the guise of the Homeland Security Act to prevent money going into the hands of terrorists. If you transfer money to that organization, the transfer will be flagged. It is a small matter to trace back from where the transfer came.

Elliott Spitzer should have known that what happened to him would happen, for in his previous job he was the Attorney General and previous to that a Federal Prosecutor in New York investigating and prosecuting similar illegal prostitution rings.

Although I have no love for Spitzer because he himself was a ruthless prosecutor stomping upon potentially guilty people but also innocent individuals to achieve his prosecutorial goals, there is a tragedy here which needs to be addressed. Spitzer’s wife and three beautiful teenage daughters did not ask for this, but they are very much involved. Here you are, a beautiful young girl, basking in the glory of being the daughter of the most powerful man in the state, now waking up facing the world in a shadow of their father’s disgrace. It is truly a personal tragedy and my heart goes out to the real family victims.

nicola michael (c. Tauraso, M.D.)
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
Web site: www.drtauraso.com
Blog site: http://www.drtauraso.com/blog/index.htm
Email: drtauraso@drtauraso.com







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