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    Post  EMPATHY on Sat Jul 10, 2010 8:49 am

    Tuesday, July 14, 2009

    there an Entertainment Octopus? Partners Anschutz (Michael Jackson®)
    and Kerzner (Global Gambling Oligarch)

    Also see: "Who
    Is Philip Anschutz? (And Why Is He in Business with Michael Jackson and
    The Weekly Standard?)"

    posted by DasGoat
    July 13, 2009


    "Anschutz's company,
    AEG, has been accused of attempting to profit from the death of Michael
    Jackson, who was under contract to perform at the O2 Arena." Inheriting
    the casinos-and-resorts holdings of Kerzner, Colony Capital LLC now also
    owns Jackson's Neverland Ranch, a future "Graceland" (tourist

    Citizen Anschutz: How the conservative
    Christian head of Regal Cinemas is trying to change how you see movies

    Justin Clark
    March 23, 2006


    Every stage of your moviegoing experience — from production to
    promotion to distribution to exhibition — is controlled by one man:
    66-year-old religious conservative Philip Anschutz.

    Fortune's "greediest executive" in 1999, the Denver resident is a
    generous supporter of anti-gay-rights legislation, intelligent design,
    the Bush administration and efforts to sanitize television. With a net
    worth of $5 billion, he is Forbes ' thirty-fourth richest American, two
    spots above Revlon's Ronald Perelman. Anschutz heads a vast media
    empire whose assets include the Examiner chain, twenty percent of the
    country's movie screens, and a sizeable stake in Qwest Communications,
    the scandal-ridden telecom giant he formerly directed. (Anschutz was
    accused of helping falsely inflate Qwest profit reports, then making
    millions by selling his own shares in the company — a claim he
    ultimately settled by paying millions to charity.)

    stake in Hollywood has been growing since 2000, when he began buying the
    bankrupt Regal, Edwards and United Artists chains and founded two film
    studios, Walden Media and Bristol Bay. In many areas of the country,
    the Regal Cinemas chain is the only option for seeing first-run films.
    Carole Handler, a prominent Los Angeles anti-trust attorney, says this
    gives Anschutz considerable leverage in his latest domain of conquest.
    "Anschutz is the person who went and bought the theaters out of
    bankruptcy," she says. "Don't think that passed unnoticed by the

    Anschutz has gained considerable power in negotiating
    licensing agreements with the film studios, contracts which impact
    everything from where a movie is played, to how long it runs, how it's
    marketed, which upcoming releases are given trailer time, and how
    revenue is split between the studio and the theater. It is a kind of
    power, says Handler, that harkens back to the early days of cinema, when
    studios, distributors, exhibitors and even movie star magazines were
    concentrated into the same relatively few hands.

    There's a twist,
    though: Anschutz's politics.

    A heavy contributor to the
    Republican Party for decades, Anschutz helped fund Amendment 2, a ballot
    initiative to overturn a state law protecting gay rights, and helped
    stop another initiative promoting medical marijuana. More recently, he
    helped fund the Discovery Institute, a conservative Christian think tank
    that mounted a public relations campaign and financed "research" into
    Intelligent Design. He has also supported the Media Research Council,
    the group that generates nearly all indecency complaints with the FCC
    (including Janet Jackson's now-legendary "wardrobe malfunction").

    a friend of his told Fortune, Anschutz "has a latent interest in doing
    something significant in American Christianity. He is working
    deliberately and diligently on it."
    In 2005, PG-rated films
    outperformed R-rated films in the theater for the first time in two
    decades. Conservatives have touted weak theater attendance as proof that
    the heartland isn't interested in Hollywood's licentiousness and
    liberal politics. The Dove Foundation, non-profit advocates of
    "wholesome family entertainment", published a study showing that G-rated
    movies are eleven times more profitable than R-rated flicks. Indeed:
    as a co-producer and financial backer of Oscar contender "Ray," Anschutz
    reportedly insisted on altering the details of subject Ray Charles'
    life, downplaying his drug use and womanizing to obtain a PG-13 rating.

    Hollywood didn't heed the Dove Foundation's advice in 2005 — the key
    Oscar nominations were all low-grossing films that are very political —
    studios have begun looking into releasing PG versions of their R-rated
    fare, an innovation made possible by the advent of digital cinema. The
    double release would allow theaters to play the cleaner version during
    more lucrative screening times earlier in the day and the director's cut
    later on.

    Frederick Anschutz (born 28 December 1939 in Russell, Kansas) is an
    American businessman. With an estimated current net worth of around
    $7.8 billion, he is ranked by Forbes as the 31st richest person in the

    Anschutz's father was a land investor who invested in
    ranches in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, and eventually went into the
    oil-drilling business. Anschutz's grandfather, Carl Anschutz (born
    November 10, 1859, in Samara), emigrated from Russia and started the
    Farmers State Bank in Russell, Kansas.

    Anschutz grew up in
    Hays, Kansas, with part of the family located in Wisconsin (the location
    of his father's oil-exploration business, Circle A Drilling, where he
    lived near Bob Dole). In later years, Anschutz contributed to Dole's
    political campaigns.

    [In 1971] he acquired 9 million acres
    (36,000 km²) along the Utah-Wyoming border. This produced his first
    fortune in the oil business. In the early 1980s, the Anschutz Ranch,
    with its 1 billion barrel (160,000,000 m³) oil pocket, became the
    largest oil field discovery in the United States since Prudhoe Bay in
    Alaska in 1968. He sold a half-interest in it to Mobil Oil for $500
    million in 1982.

    For several years Anschutz was Colorado's sole
    billionaire. With his acquisition of land in other Western states, he is
    thought to own more farm and cattle land than any other single private
    citizen in the United States.

    He then moved into railroads and
    telecommunications before venturing into the entertainment industry. In
    1999, Fortune magazine compared him to the nineteenth-century tycoon
    J.P. Morgan, as both men "struck it rich in a fundamentally different
    way: they operated across an astounding array of industries, mastering
    and reshaping entire economic landscapes."

    AEG &
    Michael Jackson at the O2 Arena

    Anschutz's company, AEG
    has been accused of attempting to profit from the death of Michael
    Jackson, who was due to perform at the Dome, now the O2 Arena in

    While refunds of the approximately 750,000 tickets
    (at £55-£75 each) are available to customers that request it, the
    promoter has offered to send out "souvenir" tickets providing fans of
    the singer waive their right to the refund.[9]

    The company
    estimates that between 40-50% of its customers will request the original
    tickets in lieu of the refund, which will save the company $40 million
    in refunds. This is in addition to future profits from any material that
    forms a part of the "This Is It" concerts - the intellectual property
    of AEG.[10]

    Randy Phillips, was quoted as saying: "Since he
    [Jackson] loved his fans in life, it is incumbent upon us to treat them
    with the same reverence and respect after his death."


    Anschutz's investment in the Millennium Dome in
    London, (through his company Anschutz Entertainment Group who
    redeveloped it to The O2) has caused him to become involved in the
    controversies surrounding former British Deputy Prime Minister, John
    Prescott. A large part of Anschutz's proposed investment in the Dome is
    conditional on the granting of a 'super casino' license by the British
    government. The controversy surrounds the extent of Prescott's influence
    on this critical decision. Anschutz has met Prescott personally on
    several occasions since 2004, including a two-night stay at Anschutz's
    ranch in 2005, footing the bill for hospitality and gifts. The emergence
    of this controversy in June 2006 has resulted in Anschutz cancelling a
    scheduled further meeting.[5]

    In January 2007, the decision on
    the "Super Casino" surprisingly went to a proposal in Manchester, as
    opposed to the apparently more likely winning bids from Blackpool and
    the Anschutz proposal in London. A spokesperson for Anschutz
    Entertainment Group advised that they would be looking into the reasons
    behind the decision and that the company were "taking time to examine
    the findings in full and considering our position". [6]

    decision to have the super casino in Manchester was not a great surprise
    considering Anschutz invested in the city in 2004, when he spent £50m
    on the MEN arena and the winner of the casino licence is a close ally of
    Anshutz, Sol Kerzner. [7] [8]

    Summary of business

    Anschutz owns or has major interests in about
    100 companies, including the following:

    Anschutz Entertainment
    Group, which has stakes in two U.S. soccer teams, including the MLS's
    Los Angeles Galaxy and Houston Dynamo; the NHL's Los Angeles Kings; the
    AHL's Manchester Monarchs; the ECHL's Reading Royals; the NBA's Los
    Angeles Lakers; Staples Center; Home Depot Center; Major League Lacrosse
    LA Riptide; the Swedish soccer team Hammarby IF, Swedish hockey team
    Djurgårdens IF; the German ice hockey teams Hamburg Freezers and
    Eisbären Berlin; and the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles. In the UK they
    own the Manchester Evening News Arena, the London Arena, and the
    Millennium Dome which has been redeveloped as a multi-purpose arena
    under the name "The O2".

    Anschutz Film Group (reorganized
    Crusader Entertainment now known as Bristol Bay Productions and Walden
    Media). Involved in the production of the movie Atlas Shrugged, and
    previously involved in the production of the movie Holes in 2003 and the
    commercially successful The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch,
    and the Wardrobe in 2005.

    Forest Oil

    Pacific Energy

    17% stake in Qwest Communications, which became a Baby
    Bell upon the purchase of US West

    Regal Entertainment Group, the
    largest movie theater chain in the world with approximately 6,000
    screens. Anschutz owns more than half of the company, which is a
    collection of former bankrupt chains.

    Union Pacific Railroad
    (Anschutz is the company's largest shareholder, with a 6% stake.)

    Media Group, a Denver-based Publishing Group which includes:[11]
    San Francisco Examiner (purchased in 2004)

    The Washington
    Examiner, which was spun off from a number of D.C. area suburban

    The Baltimore Examiner, which launched in April 2006
    and was shut down in early 2009. (Anschutz has trademarked the name
    "Examiner" in more than sixty cities.)
    Examiner.com, a hyper-local
    web portal where citizen journalists write on local topics, from news to
    blog-like stories.

    The Oil & Gas Asset Clearinghouse, which
    is an auction company designed for the Oil & Gas Business

    Broadcasting, which owns a string of radio stations in Colorado.
    brought David Beckham to the United States. Beckham is now employed by
    Galaxy Media and plays on an Anschutz-owned soccer team, Los Angeles
    Galaxy of Major League Soccer.

    The Anschutz Investment Company
    purchased LightEdge Solutions in February 2008. LightEdge is a
    business-to-business hosted services provider focused on
    Wide-Area-Networking, Voice-over-IP, Hosted Microsoft applications
    (Exchange, OCS, SharePoint), hosted servers/storage collocation cage and
    rackspace and Business Continuity Services.

    and Christian activism

    Anschutz, a Republican donor and
    supporter of George W. Bush's administration, has been an active patron
    of a number of religious and conservative causes:

    Helped fund
    Colorado's 1992 Amendment 2, a ballot initiative designed to overturn
    local and state laws that prohibit discrimination against individuals on
    the basis of sexual orientation.[12]

    Helped fund the Discovery
    Institute, a think tank based in Seattle, Washington that promotes
    intelligent design and criticizes evolution. [13]

    Supported the
    Parents Television Council, a group that protests against what they
    believe to be television indecency.[13]

    Financed and distributed
    Christian films, such as Amazing Grace and The Chronicles of Narnia:
    The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, for mass audiences through his two
    film production companies and ownership of much of the Regal, Edwards
    and United Artists theater chains. In addition, as a producer Anschutz
    reportedly required the removal of certain material related to drug use
    and sex in the 2004 film Ray because he found it objectionable.[13][14]

    The Foundation for a Better Life.

    In June, 2009, reports
    circulated that Anschutz was on the verge of purchasing the conservative
    American opinion magazine The Weekly Standard from Rupert Murdoch's
    News Corporation. The reports reasoned that, having purchased The Wall
    Street Journal in 2007, Murdoch's interest in the smaller publication
    had been less forceful.[15][16] For Anschutz' part, the magazine's
    editorial line would appear consonant with his political views.

    REAL winner at the supercasino


    Last updated at 23:25 30
    January 2007


    controversial South African billionaire with close links to Labour was
    the big winner as Britain's first supercasino licence was awarded to

    Sol Kerzner is poised to become the most powerful man
    in the British gaming industry. He can expect to earn tens of millions
    running the new gaming palace offering the first unlimited jackpots on
    British soil, along with new large casinos given the green light
    yesterday in Leeds and Luton.

    His involvement in the winning bid
    led to accusations that Labour ministers have been fatally compromised
    by their links to foreign casino operators.

    Officials from Mr
    Kerzner's company have had at least 12 meetings with three different
    ministers and the tycoon is a key ally of Millennium Dome boss Philip
    Anschutz, who entertained [deputy prime minister] John Prescott at his

    Critics accused Labour of betraying its anti-gambling
    socialist roots and - despite the furore over the Dome's bid -
    continuing to ignore public anger at its links with controversial
    foreign businessmen.

    The surprise decision in Manchester's favour
    left the Government in turmoil as ministers came under overwhelming
    pressure to increase the number of supercasinos or face legal action
    from Blackpool Council and Mr Anschutz's Dome - the two front runners
    for the supercasino licence.

    Downing Street and Culture Secretary
    Tessa Jowell both suggested more could be built after an assessment of
    the social impact of the Manchester site is completed in three years.

    they were immediately slapped down by Gordon Brown. In an astonishing
    rebuke, the Chancellor's allies said that he believes Government has a
    "moral duty" to prevent an increase in the number of supercasinos.

    pointedly said he has refused to give in to demands from foreign casino
    operators - such as Mr Kerzner - to offer financial concessions to
    overseas investors.

    An MP close to the Chancellor said: "This is
    not a pilot or a guinea pig or whatever you want to call it. An
    agreement was reached last year which reflected public concerns, and
    that agreement will be stuck to.

    "The Government's responsibility
    is to stick up for the standards, values and well being of society as a
    whole. It's our moral duty as a Government to protect the wider public

    The announcement by the independent Casino Advisory Panel
    means Manchester will be entitled to open a 50,000 square foot Las-Vegas
    style casino in the run-down East, already home to the City of
    Manchester stadium. It will feature 1,250 fruit machines with jackpots
    that could run into millions.

    Large casinos, 15,000 sq ft in
    size, offering 150 machines with £4,000 jackpots, will open in Leeds,
    Middlesbrough, Great Yarmouth, Milton Keynes, Solihull, Southampton,
    Newham in East London and Hull, John Prescott's home town.

    casinos, of 7,500 sq ft and 80 machines, will be built in Skegness,
    Bath, Stranraer, Luton, Scarborough, Swansea, Torbay and Wolverhampton.

    decision to pick Manchester ahead of the two front-runners, the Dome
    and Blackpool, prompted claims of meddling by ministers, who were keen
    to avoid further sleaze allegations about Labour's links with Mr

    Now ministers face claims that they did favours for Mr
    Kerzner, who was once accused of offering bribes to secure gaming
    licences in South Africa - claims he has always denied.

    City Council will have to run an open competition before it awards the
    licence but Kerzner International is in pole position. The company has
    also expressed strong interest in running the new casinos in Leeds and
    Luton. It was also involved with Glasgow's failed supercasino bid.

    Stephen Crow, chairman of the panel, denied that there had been any
    political interference. He said Manchester was best suited as "a good
    place to test the social impact" of gambling - comments which provoked
    complaints that a particularly poor local population will now be used as
    guinea pigs.

    He fuelled calls for more supercasinos by agreeing
    that all seven shortlisted sites - which also included Cardiff,
    Newcastle and Sheffield - was capable of running a supercasino. "They
    were all good," he said.

    Tessa Jowell was forced to concede that
    any increase in the numbers will have to be approved by both houses of
    Parliament, following fury at claims that ministers might push through
    an expansion by the back door without a vote.

    She said that
    monitoring of the Manchester casino - not due to open before 2008 -
    would take until at least the autumn of 2010. "These safeguards preclude
    any consideration of further casinos for a lifetime of this
    Parliament," she added.

    The Dome's failure is a humiliating blow
    for Tony Blair, who championed the project as it turned into a
    disastrous white elephant. He will now leave office with its fate in

    Last night the defeated Anschutz Corporation hinted at
    legal action against the Government. David Campbell, head of AEG Europe,
    said he was "very disappointed", adding: "We are taking time to examine
    the findings in full and considering our position."

    vulgar tycoon who loves boxing, blondes ... and buying influence


    Last updated at 23:03 30 January 2007


    Tycoon Sol Kerzner, famous for his over-the-top casinos, with his
    fourth wife Heather

    There could hardly be a more vulgar or
    notorious billionaire than South Africa-born casino magnate Sol Kerzner,
    now 69.

    Four times married and with an appetite for expletives -
    he likes to begin business meetings with the delicate phrase, 'What the
    f***'s going on?' - Kerzner is famous for his passion for blondes,
    booze and boxing.

    • Sun King takes a shine to Labour

    is also behind some of the world's most outrageously over-the-top
    casinos complete with fake Mayan temples, artificial volcanoes and
    lagoons filled with sharks.

    He created the infamous Sun City in
    an independent black state within South Africa, symbol of the worst
    excesses of that country during the apartheid years. There, white people
    could indulge their every whim, be it soft porn or gambling, and blacks
    were there only to serve them.

    He has made many enemies on his
    way to creating a fortune estimated to exceed £100million.

    he seems to have a lot of powerful friends in Britain where he sees
    enormous business potential. Yet the diminutive Kerzner is hardly the
    sort of person one would have thought the New Labour establishment would
    want to welcome into its midst.

    He has a record of being, shall
    we say, financially generous to politicians who have been in a position
    to help him establish his casinos in South Africa.

    In the U.S. he
    has been investigated by the New Jersey gaming authorities who
    concluded that he had bribed a leading African politician - although it
    must be said that they decided the bribe was an "aberration" and that he
    had since "convincingly demonstrated good character, honesty and

    It is little short of extraordinary that a New Labour
    government should consider him a 'fit and proper' person to usher vast
    casinos into Britain.

    But there is no denying that he has plans
    to spend more than £600million on three gambling palaces here. And to
    get an idea of what they will be like, you need to look no further than
    his vast £900million Atlantis Casino on the Bahamas, where according to
    one recent visitor you can find children of 12 playing some of the 1,200
    slot machines.

    Notoriously secretive about his business empire,
    Kerzner likes to keep outsiders guessing about how much he is worth, and
    where his money is.

    He has houses in Chelsea, the South of
    France and Cape Town but he spends the vast majority of his time in the
    Bahamas, or visiting his nine One and Only hotels around the world.

    always moving," says one former employee, "jumping into his private jet
    and rushing off at a moment's notice".

    Solomon Kerzner was born
    in Johannesburg on August 23 1935, the youngest of four children and
    only son of Russian Jewish immigrants who had arrived in the country six
    years earlier. He was brought up in the poverty-stricken district of
    Doornfontein, where he was regularly picked on and beaten up for being

    His response was to learn to box - "to beat up all the
    boys who beat me up".

    It was a talent which was to see him become
    welterweight champion at the University of Witwatersrand, where he
    studied accountancy. He qualified at 26 and became a junior partner in a
    firm of chartered accountants.

    His parents, who had originally
    run a cafe, had graduated to a small boarding house in Durban where
    Kerzner used to help out. In 1964, inspired by new hotel developments in
    the U.S., he borrowed money from clients to build South Africa's first
    five-star hotel, the Beverly Hills, in a fishing village north of

    Within five years he had founded the brash Southern Sun
    Hotel franchise which was to grow to 31 hotels and transform the leisure
    industry in South Africa. The vulgarian was born.

    His first
    marriage, to Maureen Adler, with whom he had three children - sons
    Howard, always known as Butch, and Brandon, who both now work with him,
    and a daughter, Andrea, now 44 - ended in divorce in the early 1970s.

    Kerzner, 40, was chief executive of Kerzner International, while his
    father is chairman, but was killed in an air crash in October.

    second marriage, to Shirley Besthier, came to an end in 1978, when she
    killed herself. The couple had a three-year-old son and a ten-month-old
    daughter at the time.

    "Shirley killing herself was obviously a
    huge setback in my life," he said afterwards.

    "Shortly after that
    I threw myself into the planning of Sun City."

    It was his
    creation of Sun City in 1979 in the so-called independent homeland of
    Bophuthatswana, two-and-a-half hours' drive from Johannesburg, which was
    to transform his fortune, making him "the richest man in Africa" and
    leading to his nickname of the Sun King.

    And it was this deal
    which saw Kerzner first make use of his political skills, in his
    relationship with Lucas Mangope, leader of Bophuthatswana. He was said
    to be "in Kerzner's pocket".

    There can be no denying the success
    of Sun City, with its simulated earthquakes and 7,000 imported trees.

    delighted in holding elaborate extravaganzas there including world
    heavyweight title fights and Miss World contests, and playing host to
    celebrities such as Frank Sinatra and Liza Minnelli, as well as to
    countless politicians.

    Not that everyone was quite so keen to
    accept Kerzner's lavish hospitality. Many saw Sun City as the hideous,
    patronising and manipulative face of apartheid.

    By 1985 his third
    marriage, to South Africa's first Miss World, Anneline Kriel, was on
    the rocks - amidst rumours of a stormy and violent parting.

    Kerzner celebrated his 50th birthday in August that year by chartering a
    Jumbo jet and flying 150 friends to Mauritius, where he had established
    a casino-hotel. On the flight he replaced the stewardesses with

    In December 1986, Kerzner was embroiled in fresh
    bribery allegations, this time that he paid the then Prime Minister of
    Transkei, George Matanzima, to gain exclusive gaming rights there.

    discovered by the New Jersey gaming authorities a decade later
    confirmed that one of Kerzner's companies had indeed transferred
    £600,000 to the trust account of a middle man "for the ultimate benefit
    of G Matanzima".

    Matanzima was jailed for nine years and a
    warrant was issued for Kerzner, but he was never to stand trial.
    Although Kerzner eventually admitted paying the money, he insisted that
    it was extorted from him.

    Not long afterwards, he began to remove
    himself from South Africa, initially selling his hotel chain but
    keeping Sun City.

    Kerzner settled on the Bahamas where, with
    backing from the Cayzer shipping family, he bought a resort on Paradise
    Island and started work on what was to become the uniquely graceless
    Atlantis resort.

    It has lagoons featuring sharks, sting rays and
    barracudas, as well as a six-storey-high fake Mayan temple containing a
    60ft water slide, not to mention 24-hour gaming halls.

    A lifelong
    60-a-day smoker, Kerzner had a heart attack in 1989 at the age of 54
    and has not smoked since, replacing cigarettes with a now ever-present
    string of worry beads made out of solid gold.

    But the illness
    didn't slow him down, or cause him to lose his appetite for the company
    of beautiful young, women.

    With the long-legged Californian
    supermodel Christina Estrada, now 39, at his side, Kerzner flew round
    the world in his private jet, expanding his luxury hotel chain and
    investing one last time in South Africa, where in 1992 he launched the
    equally over-the-top Lost City, complete with artificial rain forest,
    alongside Sun City.

    But two years later, after making a secret
    donation of £600,000 to Nelson Mandela's African National Congress party
    - in what one South African Minister described as an attempt to escape
    the attentions of the law - Kerzner severed all remaining South African

    With his Atlantis project in the Bahamas under way,
    he also targeted the U.S. and in the 1990s bought the £300million
    Resorts casino hotel in Atlantic City then established the £200million
    Mohegun Resort-Casino in Connecticut.

    The loud-mouthed Kerzner
    had lost none of his ruthlessness. Even though he had formally proposed
    to Estrada, he dumped her early in 2000, and shortly afterwards married
    her best friend, New Yorker Heather Murphy, who was then 33, half his

    There seems little doubt that Kerzner - "a toad, but one
    who's happy about it" in the words of one City figure - will become as
    controversial a wealthy friend of the Labour Party as Formula One boss
    Bernie Ecclestone, and the Hinduja brothers before him.


    ... Anschutz is very concerned
    about moral issues. He is very much against sexual content in movies,
    the taking of soft drugs and gay rights. However, he has never showed
    much interest in gambling before. This is a new venture instigated by
    his business partner, Sol Kerzner. The media have had very little to say
    about Kerzner but he has an interesting background. Kerner is a white
    South African who made his fortune from Sun City . During 1985, Kerzner's Sun
    City, South Africa resort was the topic of anti-Apartheid rock album
    titled Sun City by a group of rock musicians calling themselves Artists
    United Against Apartheid.

    Kerzner then got involved in gambling.
    He owns the Mohegan Sun casino located in Uncasville, Connecticut.
    Kerzner has been investigated for corruption a number of times, none of
    which have resulted in a conviction.

    Like Anschutz, he knows the
    politicians you need to keep happy.

    Simon Jenkins interviewed
    Sol Kerzner a few months ago. Kerzner admitted that his investment in
    the Dome depended on winning a casino licence.

    It is estimated
    that Kerzner, Anschutz and others wanting to win contracts to open
    casinos in the UK, have spent over $100m on a campaign to ope -up
    gambling in the country. Blair’s government was targeted as “the soft
    moral underbelly of Europe”. The industry is rightly barred from most
    European countries.

    Despite pressure from Blair and Prescott, the
    Home Office refused to introduce new gambling regulations. Therefore,
    Blair had the good idea to move gambling legislation from the Home
    Office to the Culture Department. This was very convenient as Tessa
    Jowell, the minister concerned, was married to David Mills, a gambling
    political lobbyist.

    It was probably Mills who arranged for
    Kerzner and Anschutz to meet Jowell, Richard Caborn (minister of
    gambling) and Gideon Hoffman, head of Whitehall’s gambling division.

    of the reasons that people like Kerzner and Anschutz are willing to pay
    millions corrupting our politicians and civil servants concerns the way
    the contracts are organized. Each contract will give the company a
    total monopoly in the city or town that gets it. It is indeed a licence
    to print money. It is also the reason why organized crime is behind
    these businessmen who have so far been able to use their money to keep
    out of prison.

    There are several claims in today’s newspapers
    that people close to Tony Blair are briefing against John Prescott. He
    is unlikely to go quietly. He is already saying off the record that he
    was only carrying out Blair’s orders when he did his deals with Philip

    According to Prescott, Blair became anxious when the
    government could not find a buyer of the £758m Millennium Dome when it
    closed in 2000. Blair saw the dome as a symbol of his premiership and a
    beacon for the redevelopment of London. As Lord James, the dome
    chairman, pointed out, this became a crisis when it was discovered in
    October, 2000, that according to the original contract, if it was not
    sold by November, 2000, it would have to be demolished. Blair was
    particularly concerned about the images of the dome being pulled down.

    was ordered to use any means at his disposal to sell the dome. He did
    this by doing a deal with Philip Anschutz. It was the most appalling
    deal possible. The £758m dome was given away for nothing. His company,
    AEG, would turn the site into a sports and entertainment complex. The
    government claimed victory by arguing that they would get a share of any
    future profits in the venture. AEG also promised to invest £300m on
    developing the site. This included the building of 10,000 homes and the
    creation of 24,000 jobs. This deal was eventually signed in May 2002.

    the public was not told about was that Prescott had promised Anschutz
    and his business partner, Sol Kerzner, that London would win the 2012
    Olympics bid. This would draw large crowds to the dome. As a result of
    this promise, Blair had to do everything possible in order to get the
    Olympics. It is possible that Blair was forced to resort to illegal
    methods ....

    The second promise involved passing a law that
    would allow the building of “supercasinos” in Britain. The Home Office
    would not do as it was told and so the new gambling bill was given to
    Tessa Jowell at the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). In
    July, 2003, AEG had its first meeting with Richard Caborn, the junior
    minister at DCMS, involved in drafting this new gambling bill.

    to the minutes of the meeting, AEG said it was their intention to build
    a massive Las Vegas style casino next to the dome. However, the
    problem was that this kind of casino was banned in the UK, as it is in
    most of Europe.

    A DCMS briefing note on 20 November 2003 pointed
    out that Sol Kerzner had now joined forces with AEG and that he was
    insisting on being given permission to build a “super casino” in London.
    Two months later Prescott had a meeting with Anschutz in London. A
    memo sent to Lord McIntosh stated: “You should be aware that John
    Prescott recently met Phil Anschutz… The casino is a key plank in AEG’s
    long-term business strategy.”

    In July 2004 Prescott flew to Los
    Angeles to have another meeting with Anschutz (at a cost to the taxpayer
    of £8,868). The official reason given for the trip was “various
    regeneration, development and new urbanism site visits.”

    October, 2004, Tessa Jowell published the proposed new legislation. It
    announced the granting of an unlimited number of licences to build and
    run super casinos. It was thought that if this happened, people would
    not notice the possible link between the selling of the dome and the
    building of a super casino in London.

    Understandably, this
    proposal caused a great deal of concern. Under extreme pressure, Jowell
    offered to limit it to 10 super casinos.

    This became an issue
    during the run-up to the last general election and Jowell was forced to
    promise that she would cut the number to one super casino. In May 2005,
    a short-list of 8 locations, including the dome site, was announced.
    This meant that several bidders were not on the list. This included
    Thames Gateway South Essex, who wanted to build a super casino in
    Southend. Rob Tinlin, chief executive of Southend Council, claimed that
    John Prescott had been using his influence to get the AEG bid on the

    The super-casino licence will be announced later
    this year. If it is granted to AEG everyone will believe it is as a
    result of government corruption. If it is not, AEG is likely to reveal
    details of promises that have been made by government ministers.
    Anschutz might even announce who provided the £2 million loan to the
    Labour Party. Tony Blair and Gordon Brown have got themselves into a
    lose-lose situation.

    "You and I must make a pact, we must bring salvation back,
    whenever you need me, I,ll be there".


    Posts : 5208
    Join date : 2010-03-02
    Location : PLACE WITH NO NAME


    Post  EMPATHY on Sat Jul 10, 2010 8:51 am


    The above post was taken from this link. There are many posts regarding Michael Scroll down the margin on the right hand side.

    "You and I must make a pact, we must bring salvation back,
    whenever you need me, I,ll be there".


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