As the Financial Control Board devours what is left of Puerto Rico, many people are wondering how the island got into this desperate mess.
Here are two key words: Luís Fortuño.
During his short governorship, Fortuño ruled over Puerto Rico like a criminal Mafioso.
He fired 30,000 workers, closed down schools, reduced pension benefits, raised the university tuition, and hiked gasoline and sales taxes. Then he took all these “savings” and spent Nine Billion Dollars mysteriously, without properly accounting for it. To this day, the people of Puerto Rico do not know where that $9 billion was spent.
Fortuño also campaigned aggressively against Barack Obama and for Mitt Romney, even after Romney’s infamous “let’s forget the 47%” fiasco.
Unfortunately, the “47%” which Romney and Fortuño were prepared to forget, included nearly the entire population of Puerto Rico.
WHAT DID FORTUÑO DO WITH ALL THE MONEY?
In just four years, Fortuño borrowed more money than any governor in Puerto Rican history…over $16 billion.
THAT DEBT is the one which Puerto Ricans will now have to pay, through a Financial Control Board.
The Financial Control Board…run by Wall Street and Luis Fortuño
By the end of his four-year term, the press reported a “tsunami” of private contracts that Fortuño doled out from 2009 till 2013. The amount was astounding: over $9.3 billion in private contracts.
Much of this flood of private contracts, was handed out to Fortuño’s friends and business associates.
Here is one example: in 2011, while firing 30,000 government workers to “save money,” Fortuño tried to push a $450 million gasoline pipeline for which the largest contract, worth $9.6 million, went to Ray Engineers PSC.
Ray Engineers had no pipeline construction experience but it was owned by Fortuño’s childhood friend, Pedro Ray Chacón.
In addition, even before the pipeline project was announced, the Fortuño administration awarded about $27 million in private contracts – without public bids – for “preliminary studies.”
$1 BILLION FOR “PUBLICITY” AND $2.6 BILLION FOR “ORIENTATION”
During his own “good government” years, Fortuño fired 30,000 public workers…and then handed out billions of dollars in private contracts to his own personal friends. This included:
THE ROBBER OF PUERTO RICO, BECOMES A “REFORMER” IN WASHINGTON
Due to this orgy of borrowing and corrupt spending, the public debt of Puerto Rico was already $70 billion when Fortuño left office in 2013.
He left the island in a financial shambles, to enjoy a million-dollar partnership at the Washington, D.C. law firm of Steptoe & Johnson.
Currently, he has the gall to write “good government articles” such as this one, titled “Puerto Rico has a spending problem.”
SCARFACE IN LA FORTALEZA
Luis Fortuño’s political resume is dripping with corruption, nepotism, brutality, and financial mismanagement.
During his four-year term, he injected Wall Street loans and high-interest debt deep into the veins of the Puerto Rican economy.
At PREPA, Fortñuno created a Ponzi scheme…in which 82% of every “new” Wall Street loan, was used to pay the interest on the loan before it. This is a classic Ponzi scheme, and it was disclosed in a 23-page committee report from the Puerto Rico legislature in June 2015.
That is what Mafiosos, dictators and drug dealers do.
As the top Mafioso of Puerto Rico, Luis Fortuño ruled over the island…like Tony Montana ruled over Miami in Scarface.
And now he’s going to do it again…under the cover of “fiscal reform,” from behind a Financial Control Board.
A PUPPET NAMED CARLOS GARCIA
Carlos Garcia was appointed by Luis Fortuño, as president of the Government Development Bank (GDB).
Garcia also engineered Law 7…which enabled Gov. Fortuño to fire 30,000 government workers, in order to free up money for his “private contracts.”
These “private contracts” went to Gov. Fortuño’s family and friends, and to campaign donors of the PNP political party.
And now…guess what?
Carlos Garcia is one of the seven members of the Financial Control Board.
As my grandmother used to say, “mas claro no canta el gallo.”
For a history of the War Against All Puerto Ricans, read the book…
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