aside Will The Real Hillary Clinton Please Stand UP? Part IX (1979 Commodity Trading Scandal)

This is a repeat of an earlier work. Hillary Clinton is attempting to reemerge back into the fray. I want to challenge the right’s “fake news” campaign against her for over 30 years.

clinton-early-yrs-hillary_pic_1For a review of the past few blogs: Hillary Rodham Clinton came of age in the 1970s when the feminist movement was at its peak. She was the only female student in her 1973 Yale Law School graduating class. One of her earlier jobs was as a staffer in the U.S. House Judiciary Committee involved in investigating Watergate in 1974. Then in 1975 Hillary Clinton moved to Arkansas to be close to her boyfriend, Bill Clinton. And this is where she was one of two female faculty members of the University of Arkansas. It was around this time that she started the University’s first free legal aid group.

It is important for Millennials to understand that a trailblazer like Hillary Clinton would have faced resistance from men who were uncomfortable with women who were breaking down barriers in male dominated professions.

Three major republican trumped up scandals regarding Hillary Clinton date back to her early adult years of 1974-1975. ALL HAVE BEEN THOROUGHLY DEBUNKED BY CREDIBLE NEWS OUTLETS AND AS DETAILED IN MY PRIOR BLOGS. Hillary Rodham Clinton was not fired from her Watergate staffer position in 1974; she did not deliberately write a misleading Watergate legal brief while hiding pertinent documents in 1974; and she did not volunteer to handle a rape case in 1975 where the perpetrator got off while she laughed about it.

clinton-great-photo-bc-hrc-merlin_34321-3077The Fall of 1975 is when Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton were married; and in 1976 she joined the prestigious Little Rock Rose Law Firm where she became the first female partner while Bill Clinton became the attorney general of Arkansas.

And then 1978 marks the year, when the then Attorney General Bill Clinton became the governor of Arkansas and when the White Water saga began. As per the Washington Post White Water scandal time line in 1978, “Arkansas Attorney General Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton join with James B. and Susan McDougal to borrow $203,000 to buy 220 acres of land in Arkansas’ Ozark Mountains. They soon form the Whitewater Development Corp., intending to build vacation homes.”

House on Midland ST. Little Rock:When They Were There: 1980-82 What They Paid For It: $112,000 What Was Going On in Their Lives: Mrs. Clinton partly used the proceeds from her investments and her savings to put a $60,000 down payment on the home, in the city’s Hillcrest district, purchased in the dark days after Mr. Clinton lost his re-election bid for governor. She built wooden bookshelves in a sunny office (which locals joke was the first Clinton Library) and converted the attic into a room for Chelsea, who celebrated her first birthday and learned to walk there.
House on Midland ST. Little Rock:When They Were There: 1980-82
What They Paid:  $112,000
What Was Going On in Their Lives: Mrs. Clinton partly used the proceeds from her investments and her savings to put a $60,000 down payment on the home, in the city’s Hillcrest district, purchased in the dark days after Mr. Clinton lost his re-election bid for governor. She built  bookshelves in a sunny office (which locals joke was the first Clinton Library) and converted the attic into a room for Chelsea, who celebrated her1st birthday and learned to walk there.

In the meantime and before the White Water scandal took hold, there occurred another incident which would be fodder for future inquiries. Opponents and the press would eventually be questioning how the Arkansas couple, Mr. and Mrs. Clinton were able to afford the home they purchased in Little Rock, based on their combined incomes. The speculation and innuendo ended when Hillary Clinton proved that around 1978- 1979, she successfully invested in cattle futures which allowed her to purchase their home after he lost the governorship election in 1980. He ran again in 1982 and won.

Then she was investigated by opponents and the press as to how she earned huge profits in the commodities market and if she used her own funds to invest.

Arkansas Governor's Mansion
Arkansas Governor’s Mansion

Claire McCabe addresses this issue in her 3/13/15 Quora article, “What is the real story behind the Hillary Rodham Clinton cattle futures controversy? She references sources as 1994 Seattle Times; By Angie Cannon, Frank Greve Knight-Ridder Newspapers: AP: Washington Post: Los Angeles Times: Newsday.

Question: She turned $1,000 into $100,000 over 10 months never having traded futures before and never to do so after. Was she assigned winning trades or was this legitimate profitably aggressive trading?

” The disclosure that Hillary Rodham Clinton parlayed $1,000 into nearly $100,000 through highly speculative commodities trading may create political embarrassment for the Clintons. But the information released by the White House covering investments in 1978 and 1979 also appears to support the couple’s contention that they had done nothing illegal or unethical in the trades.”

clinton-good-young-photo-hillfirst“Mrs. Clinton, whose commodity trading came during the early years of her husband’s political career and before Ronald Reagan was elected president, was guided through the risky trades by James Blair, a friend and top lawyer for one of Arkansas’ most powerful companies, Tyson Foods Inc. She also “talked to other people” and read the Wall Street Journal to research her trades, a White House official said.”

“Commodities trading, which involves anticipating the future value of a commodity, is done on margin – meaning that it takes only a small amount of money to control a large contract. Mrs. Clinton made dramatic gains by investing in live cattle futures, which are contracts linked to an anticipated future value of 40,000 pounds of slaughter-ready beef cattle.”
“Commodity trading is generally thought to be extremely risky, because if the market goes down, an investor can be liable to come up with the full amount. But a skilled trader, or one with special knowledge of a market, can reap millions of dollars.”

MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA of Clinton's Washington DC home
MINOLTA DIGITAL / of Clinton’s Washington DC home

There were other people who made the money she did,” said Levitt, but they were lucky, and their timing was perfect. As a new player, he added, “she had to have one heck of a good advisor or one very good broker.”

“Chuck Levitt, senior livestock analyst at Alaron Trading Corp. in Chicago (said). “It just so happened that she caught the biggest cattle market boom in history and at just the right time.”

“Herds had shrunk for four years and inflation was soaring in 1978-1979, said Levitt. Prices on virtually all commodities were “in a very strong upward trend.” The White House released the information in part to rebut allegations that Mrs. Clinton did not put up any of the money herself.” (Newsweek backed off this story.) “Her spokeswoman, Lisa Caputo and John Podesta said Mrs. Clinton “put up her own money, invested in her own accounts and assumed the full risk of loss.”

“Mrs. Clinton initially invested $1,000 in cash on 10/1/1978. in an account in Springdale, Arkansas, office of the Ray E. Friedman & Co. commodities brokerage of Chicago. By Oct. 12, she made $5,300 and reinvested the $6,300 in several transactions. In a series of trades through the rest of 1978, she accumulated profits of $49,069, offset by losses of $22,548. Her net gain at $26,521 in 1978. In 1979, Mrs. Clinton continued trading in this account with profits of about $109,600, offset by losses of about $36,600. Her net gain for 1979 was $72,996.”

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5 comments

  1. I you had watched the CNN news story about HRC’s handling of the 1975 rape case defense, yes she did not volunteer to be the perp’s defense attorney, but she was caught on audio laughing about the case afterwards. It’s her callous demeanor, lack of empathy for the victim, and her fierce determination to win at any cost which ultimately painted her in a bad light with the public.
    Trump’s team jumped all over this audio recording and played it up with great success, which I’m sure swayed many a voter who were on the fence about Hillary.

    If you watch this short CNN clip, it clearly showed Hillary laughing, implying that she got her guilty client off from serious rape charges, pleading down to a misdemeanor with a minor. Even tho HRC did nothing wrong and was an excellent defense attorney, it’s a lose-lose situation to defend a rapist. Laughing, being flippant about such a sensitive matter doesn’t help, she should have shown more empathy toward the victim.

    • Dear 1EarthUnited,

      In my research, of course I listened to the tape. If you tend to be anti-Clinton you could interpret the laugh in a negative way.

      I listened to it, and I could not make the same determination that you have. Why? Many folks including me, when talking about uncomfortable subjects will laugh inappropriately which is a cover for one’s discomfort.

      I personally cannot ascribe a negative or positive slant to her laughing in the tape.I don’t know what she was thinking or feeling.

      I side with the Snopes analysis:

      “The audio on these tapes is difficult to understand, but Clinton can be heard describing the case as “terrible.” She did audibly laugh or chuckle at points, not about “knowing that the defendant was guilty” or “getting a guilty guy off” (which makes little sense, given that the defendant pled guilty) but rather while musing about how elements of the case that might ordinarily have supported the prosecution worked in the defendant’s favor (i.e., observing that the defendant’s passing a polygraph test had “forever destroyed her faith” in that technology)”

      :

      Hugs, Gronda

  2. There an old Washington adage: perception paints politics, not facts. You’re absolutely right, depending on how one listens and interprets, it could be innocent nervous laughter or malicious, callous chuckle. In the forum of public opinion, politicians can’t afford to get this sloppy – their career depends on it!
    If it was not for HRC’s carelessness, esp emails… she would now be our president!
    Looking back, hindsight is 20/20, I would still prefer her over Trump anyday!!!!!!!

    • Dear 1EarthUnited,

      It is hard when you are constantly under scrutiny to do everythingly perfect to suit everyone’s perception as to how one should act.

      Before I started my research I was not a fan of Hillary Clinton. My ideal candidate would have been the Ohio Governor John Kasich but he did not make the cut.

      I was one who thought I knew a lot about her, but I found out that I did not.

      When folks would argue against President Obama with “fake news” like he was a Muslim who was really born in Kenya, and thus not a US citizen etc, I would end the conversation. I refused to argue someone’s competence based on refuted data. And there is lots that he did that I did not like.

      That same argument holds for HRC.

      Hugs Gronda

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