George Soros

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George Soros, international financier, billionaire investor, and "founder of a network of philanthropic organizations," has concentrated both personal effort and his financial wealth since 2002 to criticism of what he calls the Bush administration's "Bubble of American Supremacy." [1] He is Emeritus Director of Refugees International. His wife is Susan Soros.

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Soros: Bush Administration

According to Bloomberg news, September 28, 2002, George Soros said that "the final straw came on June 1, 2002, when U.S. President George W. Bush stepped before 989 graduating officers at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, New York, and changed American foreign policy. The U.S., the president said, would now take offensive military action against any country that it suspected of posing a terrorist threat, a strategy later dubbed the Bush Doctrine."

Soros said the Bush administration "violated human rights and damaged American security by invading Iraq and deposing the regime of Saddam Hussein. 'The idea that we can impose our will on the world is really just the wrong idea,'" he said, vowing "to do everything in his power to prevent Bush from winning re-election.

He "joined forces with Democratic Party allies in organized labor, the environmental movement and women's groups ... [and, in] July 2003, Soros kick-started a network of nonprofit political organizations with an $18.5 million contribution."

According to Byron Wien, senior investment strategist at Morgan Stanley and a close Soros friend, "George was violent on this before a Democratic candidate was even chosen, ... It was anybody but Bush." [2]

Soros: American Supremacy

  • In a March 14, 2003, Op-Ed, Soros likened the Bush administration's "pursuit of American supremacy" to "a boom-bust process or bubble in the stock market." Both, he argued, "have a solid basis in reality but reality is distorted by misconception. In this case, the dominant position of the US is the reality, the pursuit of supremacy the misconception. Reality can reinforce the misconception but eventually the gap between reality and its false interpretation becomes unsustainable. During the self-reinforcing phase, the misconception may be tested and reinforced. This widens the gap leading to an eventual reversal. The later it comes, the more devastating the consequences." [3]
  • In his book The Bubble of American Supremacy: Correcting the Misuse of American Power, Soros writes that "the Bush administration's foreign policy plans come from the same sort of 'bubble' psychology afflicting U.S. markets in the late 1990s. He says they have used a real fact, overwhelming military supremacy of the United States, to create a deluded worldview that might makes right and 'you're either with us or against us,' in the same way the recent boom used a real fact, the growth in technology, to lead to a delusion, the 'new economy.'" [4]

Soros: War in Iraq

Soros ran full-page ads in major U.S. newspapers challenging the honesty of the Bush administration's case for waging war in Iraq. Ads in The New York Times, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and the Houston Chronicle were titled "When the nation goes to war, the people deserve the truth." Reuters, July 25, 2003.

Soros: Funding the Opposition

The December 1, 2003, USA Today quoted Soros's worth at "about $7 billion," of which Soros had pledged "$15.5 million to anti-Bush, anti-conservative groups ... giving $10 million to Americans Coming Together, $2.5 million to MoveOn.org, and $3 million to the Center for American Progress." Soros was then in the process of "writing his own anti-Bush book. The Bubble of American Supremacy, a critique of the president's foreign policy," which hit bookstores in January 2004. [5]

Quotes

  • "'If we assess the foreign policy accomplishments of the Bush administration since Sept. 11, the scorecard is quite dismal,' Soros said. 'There are some people in the Bush administration who have the same mentality as Arafat or Sharon. I can name names, like Ashcroft, Cheney and Rumsfeld, although that is considered impolite.'" --George Soros April 9, 2002.
  • "'Although the terrorist threat is real, and we must defend against it, we are going about it the wrong way. What makes the situation so dangerous is that nobody dares to say so. The nation is endangered, therefore it is unpatriotic to criticize our leader,' Soros said. 'That is not what has made this country great. The strength of this country lies in the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights and the freedom of speech and thought." --George Soros April 9, 2002.
  • "'It is the central focus of my life,' Soros said, his blue eyes settled on an unseen target. The 2004 presidential race, he said in an interview, is 'a matter of life and death.'" --George Soros, November 11, 2003.

Biographical & Corporate Profile

"George Soros was born in Budapest, Hungary in 1930. He survived the Nazi occupation and left communist Hungary in 1947 for England, where he graduated from the London School of Economics (LSE) in 1952. While a student at LSE, Soros became familiar with the work of the philosopher Karl Popper, who had a profound influence on his thinking and later on his professional and philanthropic activities. [6]

"In 1956, Soros moved to the United States, where he began to accumulate a large fortune through an international investment fund he founded and managed. He is currently the president and chairman of Soros Fund Management LLC, a private investment management firm that serves as principal advisor to the Quantum Group of Funds, a series of international investment vehicles. In July 2000, Soros merged his flagship Quantum Fund with the Quantum Emerging Growth Fund to form the Quantum Endowment Fund. The Quantum Fund is generally recognized as one of the most successful investment funds ever, returning an average 31 percent annually throughout its more than 30-year history.

"Soros has been active as a philanthropist since 1979, when he began providing funds to help black students attend the University of Cape Town in apartheid South Africa. Today he is chairman of the Open Society Institute (OSI) and the founder of a network of philanthropic organizations that are active in more than 50 countries. Based primarily in Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union--but also in Africa, Latin America, Asia, and the United States--these foundations are dedicated to building and maintaining the infrastructure and institutions of an open society. In 1992, Soros founded Central European University, with its primary campus in Budapest.

OSI's funding for non-profit groups, such as those campaigning against the death penalty, has attracted criticism from conservative groups including the Capital Research Center. [7]

According to a biographical note on his foundation's website, Soros "has received honorary degrees from the New School for Social Research in New York City, the University of Oxford, the Budapest University of Economics, and Yale University. In 1995, the University of Bologna awarded Soros its highest honor, the Laurea Honoris Causa, in recognition of his efforts to promote open societies throughout the world." [8]

Also see "George Soros" in the Wikipedia.

Publications

Books

  • The Age of Fallibility: Consequences of the War on Terror (2006 book), Public Affairs (June 12, 2006) ISBN 1586483595.
  • George Soros On Freedom, Public Affairs Press (December 27, 2005) ISBN 1586483595.
  • Underwriting Democracy: Encouraging Free Enterprise and Democratic Reform Among the Soviets and in Eastern Europe, Public Affairs Press (April, 2004), ISBN 1586482270.
  • The Bubble of American Supremacy: Correcting the Misuse of American Power, Public Affairs Press; 1st edition (December 1, 2003) ISBN 1586482173.
  • George Soros on Globalization, Public Affairs Press; 1st edition (March 1, 2002), ISBN 1586481258.
  • Open Society: Reforming Global Capitalism, Public Affairs Press (September 1, 2000) ISBN 1586480197.
  • The Crisis of Global Capitalism: Open Society Endangered, Public Affairs Press, 1st edition (December 2, 1998), ISBN 1891620274.
  • Soros on Soros: Staying Ahead of the Curve John Wiley & Sons, 1st edition (August 4, 1995) ISBN 0471119776.
  • Opening the Soviet System, Perseus Books (June 1, 1996) ASIN 0813312051.
  • The Alchemy of Finance, Simon & Schuster (May 1, 1987) ISBN 0671634550; John Wiley & Sons; Reprint edition (April, 1994) ISBN 0471042064.

Articles & Commentary

Affiliations

Contact details

George Soros's official website and blog: http://www.georgesoros.com
Soros Foundations' website: http://www.soros.org/ Soros Foundations

Related SourceWatch Resources

References

  1. Trustees, Central European University, accessed July 3, 2009.
  2. Council, European Council on Foreign Relations, accessed February 3, 2008.
  3. Staff, Center for War/Peace Studies, accessed September 7, 2008.
  4. Advisory Board, Earth Institute, accessed August 5, 2009.
  5. Namati Advisory Council, organizational web page, accessed October 1, 2012.
  6. World Sustainable Development Forum Patrons, organizational web page, accessed October 21, 2012.

External links

Interviews

Speeches

Campaign Contributions Data

Critical Books

Articles & Commentary