Ruth Reynolds was a close friend of Pedro Albizu Campos and Congressman Vito Marcantonio. She went to jail in 1950 for supporting the Nationalist cause in Puerto Rico.
On May 9, 1950, she sent a letter to Congressman Marcantonio, which exposed the scam that Luís Muñoz Marín and the PPD Party were running all over the island. Through “Operation Bootstrap,” Muñoz Marín was skimming millions of dollars from the worker’s wages in Puerto Rico.
Ruth M. Reynolds
THE RUTH REYNOLDS LETTER
The letter is three pages long, single-spaced, and addressed to Congressman Marcantonio’s office in Washington, D.C. Here are the most shocking portions of it:
Your splendid treatment in your recent address in Congress of the “industrialization” scheme now exploiting the Puerto Rican people prompts me to send you the following additional information.
We had long suspected an integral working relationship between these manufacturers and leaders of the “Popular” government, but a conversation I chanced to overhear made the details of this relationship more clear.
Early in February 1950, I went to lunch at the Bombonera Restaurant on San Francisco Street in San Juan, at about 1:45 pm. A few minutes later three Americans entered, and they sat down in the booth next to mine. At first they spoke in subdued tones. But when I placed my lunch order in Spanish, they assumed I was Puerto Rican and would therefore understand nothing that they said in English.
Their conversation dealt first with the difficulties of securing good prostitutes. Finally they turned to business matters. The two older men were advising the third, as to how to establish a new “industry” under the auspices of the insular government
“What wages you going to pay?” asked the oldest one.
“40 cents an hour, I hear is okay down here. Not a cent more.”
“Don’t tell the government boys that. Tell ‘em you wanna help Puerto Rico, so you’re gonna pay 80 cents an hour.”
“The hell I am! Whaddaya think I’m down here for?”
“Take it easy. I didn’t say pay 80 cents an hour, I said tell ‘em you wanna pay 80 cents an hour. You’ll have ‘em eating out of your hand.”
“Yeah…then I get fixed up and I gotta pay 80 cents an hour.”
“Oh no, you don’t. You won’t have to pay more than 25 cents if you’re smart.”
“I don’t get it.”
The two older men exchanged a smile, and the second one joined in. “You see, all kinds of things can happen. Materials cost more than you figured on. Labor ain’t trained. These Puerto Ricans don’t know how to work.”
“Yeah,” said the first man. “You still want to pay 80 cents an hour, but you just can’t make ends meet if you pay more than 25 cents. In fact, if you didn’t want to help Puerto Rico so much, you’d just pack up your machines and take ‘em back home.”
“And what boob is going to believe that story?”
“They don’t have to believe it. All they gotta do is accept it. And of course, you gotta ‘persuade’ them to accept it.”
“You mean…it’s that easy?”
“It is, if you know how to play ball. Before you do anything, I’ll introduce you to this fella Sam Quiñones.”
“Yeah,” said the other man. “He’ll charge you an arm and a leg. But after you pay up, he’s not hard to do business with at all. He’ll fix you up.”
This conversation revealed the entire structure of the set-up. Sam Quiñones is President of the Senate in Puerto Rico, and the key man for making “accommodations” for the North American manufacturers. Everything has to go through Sam Quiñones.
There is probably a great disparity between the proposed wages listed in the applications for the tax exemption, and the wage scale listed in the final agreement with the government, when the factory begins to operate. In other words, all the workers are getting cheated.
Marc, this is the “industrialization” program being run down here, by Muñoz Marín and company.
SIXTY SIX YEARS LATER, THE SAME NAKED CORRUPTION
This “business model” exposed by Ruth Reynolds is the one that both major parties – PPD and PNP – have been following for sixty six years. The corruption is so open and notorious, that it has been made legal.
Through Act 20 and Act 22, John Paulson and other US billionaires are buying businesses, buildings and beaches, all over Puerto Rico.
The governor’s brother is officially receiving $70,000 per year (and unofficially another $250,000) to help them secure their “economic development” contracts.
Even the Idiot of Puerto Rico, the “Secretary of Economic Development” Alberto Bacò, gleefully admits to getting “jobs for his friends” on these corrupt business deals.
No wonder that Puerto Rico is in economic chaos.
No wonder that Congressman Marcantonio, called it “Operation Booby Trap.”
For a history of the War Against All Puerto Ricans, read the book…
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