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by Tim Jones
04 October 2003 22:01 UTC
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STOP, THIEF! I foretell a sorry day for California.
How fast can you get THIS word out?

palast@gregpalast.com wrote:

Date: Fri, 03 Oct 2003 21:11:27 -0400
From: palast@gregpalast.com
Subject: Arnold Unplugged

It's hasta la vista to $9 billion if the Governator is selected

by Greg Palast - Friday October 3, 2003

It's not what Arnold Schwarzenegger did to the girls a decade back that
should raise an eyebrow. According to a series of memoranda our office
obtained today, it's his dalliance with the boys in a hotel room just
two years ago that's the real scandal.

The wannabe governor has yet to deny that on May 17, 2001, at the
Peninsula Hotel in Los Angeles, he had consensual political intercourse
with Enron chieftain Kenneth Lay. Also frolicking with Arnold and Ken
was convicted stock swindler Mike Milken.

Now, thirty-four pages of internal Enron memoranda have just come
through this reporter's fax machine which tell all about the tryst
between Maria's husband and the corporate con men. It turns out
that Schwarzenegger knowingly joined the hush-hush encounter as
part of a campaign to sabotage a Davis-Bustamante plan to make
Enron and other power pirates then ravaging California pay back
the $9 billion in illicit profits they carried off.

Here's the story Arnold doesn't want you to hear. The biggest single
threat to Ken Lay and the electricity lords is a private lawsuit filed
last year under California's unique Civil Code provision 17200, the
"Unfair Business Practices Act." This litigation, heading to trial now
in Los Angeles, would make the power companies return the $9 billion
they filched from California electricity and gas customers.

It takes real cojones to bring such a suit. Who's the plaintiff taking
on the bad guys? Cruz Bustamante, Lieutenant Governor and reluctant
leading candidate against Schwarzenegger.

Now follow the action. One month after Cruz brings suit, Enron's
Lay calls an emergency secret meeting in L.A. of his political
buck-buddies, including Arnold. Their plan, to undercut Davis
(according to Enron memos) and "solve" the energy crisis -- that
is, make the Bustamante legal threat go away.

How can that be done? Follow the trail with me.

While Bustamante's kicking Enron butt in court, the Davis
Administration is simultaneously demanding that George Bush's
energy regulators order the $9 billion refund. Don't hold your breath:
Bush's Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is headed by a guy
proposed by Ken Lay.

But Bush's boys on the commission have a problem. The evidence
against the electricity barons is rock solid: fraudulent reporting of sales
transactions, megawatt "laundering," fake power delivery scheduling
and straight out conspiracy (including meetings in hotel rooms).

So the Bush commissioners cook up a terrific scheme: charge the
companies with conspiracy but offer them, behind closed doors, deals
in which they have to pay only two cents on each dollar they filched.

Problem: the slap-on-the-wrist refunds won't sail if the Governor of
California won't play along. Solution: Re-call the Governor.

New Problem: the guy most likely to replace Davis is not Mr.
Musclehead, but Cruz Bustamante, even a bigger threat to the power
companies than Davis. Solution: smear Cruz because -- heaven forbid!
he took donations from Injuns (instead of Ken Lay).

The pay-off? Once Arnold is Governor, he blesses the sweetheart
settlements with the power companies. When that happens, Bustamante's
court cases are probably lost. There aren't many judges who will let a
case go to trial to protect a state if that a governor has already
allowed the matter to be "settled" by a regulatory agency.

So think about this. The state of California is in the hole by $8
billion for the coming year. That's chump change next to the $8
TRILLION in deficits and surplus losses planned and incurred by George
Bush. Nevertheless, the $8 billion deficit is the hanging rope
California's right wing is using to lynch Governor Davis.

Yet only Davis and Bustamante are taking direct action to get back
the $9 billion that was vacuumed out of the state by Enron, Reliant,
Dynegy, Williams Company and the other Texas bandits who squeezed
the state by the bulbs.

But if Arnold is selected, it's 'hasta la vista' to the $9 billion.
When the electricity emperors whistle, Arnold comes -- to the Peninsula
Hotel or the Governor's mansion. The he-man turns pussycat and curls
up in their lap.

I asked Mr. Muscle's PR people to comment on the new Enron memos --
and his strange silence on Bustamante's suit or Davis' petition. But
Arnold was too busy shaving off his hitlerian mustache to respond.

To receive more of Greg's investigative reports click here:

Greg Palast is author of the New York Times bestseller, "The Best
Democracy Money Can Buy" as well as "Regulation and Democracy" (with
Theo MacGregor and Jerrold Oppenheim), the United Nations guide to
utility deregulation. Read Palast's commentaries at
www.GregPalast.com. Reprints permitted. Contact:
media@gregpalast.com. The Enron memos were discovered by the
Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, Los Angeles,

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