For years, the identity of the owner of one of the largest holdings of Puerto Rican debts has been a mystery.
That mystery has finally been solved, with the help of the The Baupost Group, who unmasked themselves to The Intercept. The Baupost Group, a Boston-based hedge fund managed by billionaire Seth Klarman, owns nearly a billion dollars of Puerto Rican debt, purchased under a shell company subsidiary and hidden from public scrutiny. Baupost acquired the debt through an on-paper Delaware-based corporation named Decagon Holdings LLC, whose beneficial owner had been unknown until now.
Why do these financial vultures hide the investments that give them the returns that make them the darlings of Fortune, The Wall Street Journal, etc. and stature in elite social circles? Not just their identity but also the identities of those investing in the hedge fund’s vulture capitalist funds.
Klarman supported Hillary Clinton in 2016, calling Trump “completely unqualified for the highest office in the land.”
So, ya wouldn’t think that Trump is now working to protect Klarman’s Puerto Rico bond investments. But turn over some rocks and some crawly things can be seen scurrying away.
As a “hedger,” Klarman has been an equal opportunity contributor to political candidates and parties. If “equal opportunity” is defined as something like 5% to Democrats and 95% to Republicans. It varies a bit by election cycle, but it’s always chump change for those Democratic politicians that he favors. And unlike Trump who bragged about his bi-partisan political contributions, Klarman contributions over the years have been extensive. A good sample is Klarman’s 2010 contribtutions.. (Scroll through the other election cycles to get a glimpse of Democrats that he has favored. Not many surprises.)
The Intercept article includes a listing of Klarman’s 2016 election cycle PAC contributions. All anodyne sounding names. I’ve added the descriptors/names that are more informative to this list and one mega contribution from the prior election cycle:
American Unity PAC (GOP/pro-gay)*: $1,000,000 (3/6/14) $500,000 (9/11/15) $500,000 (10/28/15) $500,000 (2/11/16) $500,000 (5/29/16)
Leadership Matters for America (Chris Christie): $5,000 (2/6/15)
Right to Rise (Jeb Bush): $25.000 (2/17/15) -$2,927 (5/2/16)
Independent Voice for Illinois (Mark Kirk): $100,000 (2/23/15)
America Leads (Chris Christie): $100,000 (6/15/15) $100,000 (12/22/15)
Conservative Solutions PAC (Marco Rubio): $250,000 (12/4/15) $250,000 (2/26/16)
Fighting for Ohio Fund (Rob Portman): $100,000 (3/14/16)
*Why the American Unity PAC merits additional consideration (other than the fact that it received most of Klarman’s contributions) is that it’s a creation of Paul Singer. Possibly the best known and most ruthless vulture capitalist. So, hedge fund manager Klarman hangs with Paul Singer.
Singer also opposed Donald Trump’s candidacy. Two other biggies on his list are Ending Spending Action Fund (a degree of bi-partisanship in 2016) and Our Principles Action Fund (single purpose anti-Trump ). Ah, but things can change:
Former Trump critic Paul Singer reportedly chipped in $1 million for inauguration. From Politico:
Trump was hanging out in the Oval Office with a handful of his top advisers in mid-February, prepping for his first solo news conference as president, when Singer arrived, according to three people familiar with the visit.
“Bring him in!” Trump bellowed.
Singer was directed to a seat beside Trump’s desk, where he got to listen as senior aides tossed Trump a handful of murder-board-style questions. Then, after everyone else shuffled out, Singer stayed for a one-on-one meeting. They discussed economic policy, according to a person briefed on the conversation.
Something to ponder:
"The committee cannot really understand the credibility" of the dossier w/out knowing who paid for it and who were the sources, Burr says.
— Shane Harris (@shaneharris) October 4, 2017
[Shane Harris – WSJ reporter]
Why, oh why, would the Trump administration be protecting the secret identities of the persons/entities that paid for the Steele dossier? While GOP House members continue to accept what is included in the dossier? Weird.