Taking Care of Business International Corporation: Obama’s Co-Workers

© Miri WTPOTUS August 21, 2012

Ever wonder about that year that Barack Obama (or whatever his name was then) spent at Business International Corporation (BIC), after graduating from Columbia University, allegedly with a degree in political science and international relations? This blog contains an excerpt from Obama’s book, in which he discusses his time at BIC. Read it, if you need a refresher.

With whom did he work at BIC? We know some of the names: Norman Wellen, Gary L. Springer, Paul R. Strauss, Cathy Lazere, Gary A. Seidman, Daniel D. Armstrong, Louis J. Celi, Beth Noymer Levine, Susan Arterian Chang, William Millar, Dan Kobal, and William P. Looney.

Below are profiles of these individuals, by no means exhaustive.

Norman Wellen: From his obituary, we learn that Wellen was CEO of Business International Corporation when Obama was there; Wellen also worked for twenty years at Bear Stearns. He died in 2011, at age 81. On July 31, 1983, the New York Times quoted Wellen, speaking about the military and political situation in Central America [emphasis added to quotes]:

“Certainly, short term, there are risks,” says Norman Wellen, Business International’s president. ”But there has been a minimum spillover from the problems in Nicaragua and El Salvador. Foreign owned companies operating there are carrying on normal business and considering new investments in the total area while shying away from the two troubled countries until the situation settles down.”

Wellen was mentioned at this blog, where “Denko”, a former co-worker of Obama’s at BCI, disputed Obama’s contention that he had a private secretary:

As far as I know, he always had a small office, and the only secretary in the company worked for Norman, the president.

Gary L. Springer: Springer was a BIC analyst in 1983, the same year that Obama worked there. On August 15, 1983, the New York Times quoted Springer:

”Companies with operations in the region [Central America] are intensely anti-Communist, but there is a feeling that what Reagan is doing is not good for business and that economic aid is needed down there,” said Gary L. Springer, an analyst who tracks developments in Nicaragua for the Business International Corporation, a research, publishing and consulting firm. ”Businessmen are worried that they will end up bearing the brunt of an invasion.”

Springer went on to an impressive career with some rather interesting connections. In 2000, he was Secretary-General of the Gulf of Mexico States Accord Secretariat. Pertinent excerpt from his biography:

From 1984-1990 while director of business programs at the Council of the Americas in New York, Gary was the senior staff person for the US Council of the Mexico-US Business Committee, the organization that, with the CEMAI (Mexico), helped to lay the foundation for the NAFTA over a period of eight years. He also staffed the Committee’s Advisory Group on Capital Development for Mexico, whose final report was delivered to President Miguel de la Madrid in 1988, and whose program was eventually implemented by the Salinas administration. Gary is an expert in business-government relations and consensus-building within the private sector, and has actively managed binational work programs on trade liberalization, foreign direct investment attraction, and capital formation for Mexican and US business interests.

Mr. Springer holds a Master of Arts in Government from Georgetown University, and a B.A. in International Relations from West Virginia University.

The above covers the timeframe immediately after Springer worked at BIC; the biography begins in 1984 but does not mention BIC. The full resume is extensive. He also worked for or with President George H. W. Bush, Governor Jeb Bush, as a speechwriter for David Rockefeller, and as a consultant to the World Bank.

In 2001, Springer formed a company called Strategic Eventualities, Inc. (SEI) of which he was president. From his SEI resume, we learn that Springer held “senior executive positions” at Hemispheric Strategies, Inc. (another company that Springer founded); KPMG Peat Marwick; Fleishman-Hillard; the law firm of Shearman & Sterling; The Council of the Americas; The Mexico-US Business Committe; and Business International Corporation,

where he was associate editor of Business Latin America (now a division of the Economist Intelligence Unit) in New York City. He covered politics, economics and business issues in Central America and the Andean countries, prepared numerous business risk assessments for these markets, and wrote extensively on US foreign and economic policy in the region. He authored a major study on the Peruvian market in 1982.

Paul R. Strauss: A story in the Boston Globe, dated November 4, 1990, informs us that

Paul R. Strauss of Wellesley has been promoted to feature editor of Network World in Framingham. [Massachusetts, where, coincidentally, Obama’s Uncle Omar lived.] Strauss will oversee operations of the publication’s features department and will be closely involved in the conception and development of articles on major technology, management and regulatory issues affecting the network user community.

Previously Strauss was managing editor for four years at The Business International Money Report, a weekly newsletter covering international finance and currency, [Obama wrote for the Money Report; Strauss may have been his boss] and an editor for two years with Institutional Investor. Strauss received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Tufts University and a master’s degree in journalism from American University.

Backing up six years means that Strauss may have been at BIC at the same time as Obama. Recently, Paul R. Strauss donated to the campaigns of Tammy Duckworth, as well as Obama. He and his wife Ann donated to Harvard Business School, as well. A marriage announcement supplied more background on the man:

PAUL R. STRAUSS IS WED TO ANN F. SANTOMASSO
Published: June 17, 1984
Ann Fenlon Santomasso, a senior research biologist at the Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research, and Paul R. Strauss, financial editor of Data Communications, a McGraw- Hill publication, were married yesterday. …

The bride, a daughter of John J. Fenlon of Brookfield, Conn., and Coca Beach, Fla., and the late Julia G. Fenlon, graduated from the College of New Rochelle. Her previous marriage ended in divorce, as did the bridegroom’s. Her father, who is retired, was a sales representative for Kent of London, the hairbrush company.

The bridegroom, the son of Nathan J. Strauss of New York and the late Betty Strauss, graduated from the Browning School and Tufts University and received a master’s degree in communications from American University. His father is a retired importer of women’s apparel.

Browning School is a prep school, not unlike Punahou, in New York City. Strauss would have graduated circa 1960, so he’s coincidentally about the same age as Stanley Ann Dunham, Obama’s mother. Public records indicate that Strauss worked as an analyst at IDC in 2004; he and his wife live in Arlington, Massachusetts.

Cathy Lazere: Lazere was Obama’s immediate supervisor at BIC and was the person who interviewed him for the job. According to Janny Scott, Obama was

a researcher and writer for a reference service called Financing Foreign Operations [FFO]. He also wrote for a newsletter, Business International Money Report. Cathy Lazere [was] his supervisor.

Lazere has written two books about computing:

Cathy Lazere is a freelance writer who specializes in international corporate finance and technology. She has worked as an editor at McGraw-Hill and Business International, a division of the Economist Group. Ms. Lazere holds a B.A. from Yale and an M.B.A. from New York University.

NYU is, coincidentally, the location of the Frank Marshall Davis archives.

Gary A. Seidman: Seidman founded a media company, SwitchYard, in 2007,

after a 20-year career as a writer, producer, on-air correspondent and media executive.

Gary was a founding editor of MSNBC.com in 1996. He served as the Website’s deputy editor overseeing all original journalism, and as its political director, coordinating online and television coverage with NBC News. Prior to joining MSNBC, Gary was a reporter, producer and news manager for CNN; an on-air correspondent and bureau chief for Reuters Television; and a correspondent covering Latin American and developing world politics and economics for Reuters.

One bit of employment trivia: In the mid-80s, Gary worked with Barack Obama in New York at Business International. The future president taught Gary how to use a Telex machine!

A recipient of numerous awards, Gary has reported from around the globe. His stories have appeared in The New York Times, The Economist and The Washington Post, among others, and he has written, reported and produced for CBS, CNN, CBC and NBC.

Daniel D. Armstrong: Armstrong is the most outspoken of Obama’s former BIC colleagues. At his blog, he reprised and debunked much of what Obama wrote about BIC in his now known-to-be-fabricated memoir. In that sense, Armstrong was on the cutting edge: David Maraniss, but not the blogosphere, took almost seven more years to notice the sheer number of falsehoods contained in Obama’s book.

Barack’s story may be true, but many of the facts are not. His larger narrative purpose requires him to embellish his role. I don’t buy it. Just as I can’t be inspired by Steve Jobs now that I know how dishonest he is, I can’t listen uncritically to Barack Obama now that I know he’s willing to bend the facts to his purpose.

“Dan” Armstrong, who worked with Obama and Seidman at BIC, also worked at Seidman’s company, SwitchYard:

Dan Armstrong is a New York-based writer, researcher and data professional specializing in thought leadership for corporations, financial institutions and consulting firms.

Dan has developed research – typically incorporating surveys, visualizations, interviews and stories – for organizations ranging from SAP and Oracle to the Big Four, Citicorp, Royal Bank of Canada and the World Bank. He enjoys scraping data from the web and presenting it via interactive charts, infographics and websites. Dan is the editor and co-author of several books, including The Derivatives Engineering Workbook, Tools of Risk Analysis and How to Free Blocked Funds. Dan previously worked for The Economist, Ernst & Young, the Mainichi Newspapers and Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry. [He omits his time at BIC.]

He has an undergraduate degree in anthropology, an MBA from Columbia in finance and research methods, an MS in geography from City University of New York and additional graduate-level work in statistics and data mining. Dan blogs at analyzethis.net.

Armstrong first blogged as “Denko” (as cited above). One wonders if he was at Columbia with Barry. Armstrong’s LinkedIn profile indicates that he has co-written publications for McGraw-Hill and studied Spanish, Japanese, and data mining. He appears to be about a decade older than Obama. Armstrong is a manager of a LinkedIn group for BIC alumnae. His 2005 blog post appears to be the source for many subsequent news articles, just as the Boston Globe article and the Janny Scott article were sources for later news stories. I could find no publications written or co-written by Obama during his time at BIC. This link details the type of projects that are developed at SwitchYard.

Louis J. Celi: Celi was Vice President at BIC, but was an editor when Obama worked there. Celi spoke to the New York Times in 2007:

“It was not working for General Foods or Chase Manhattan, that’s for sure,” said Louis Celi, a vice president at the company, which was later taken over by the Economist Intelligence Unit. “And it was not a consulting firm by any stretch of the imagination.” … “He always seemed aloof, a little bit of a stray cat,” added Celi. … After about a year at Business International, Obama found a job as a community organizer in Chicago. “I remember telling him he was making a big mistake,” said Celi, who conducted Obama’s exit interview. “He let me know he had bigger fish to fry.”

Celi went on to work for Oxford Economics:

a leader in global business forecasting and quantitative analysis, announced the appointment of Louis Celi and Barry Rutizer to lead the expansion of their business into the Americas. Their appointment reflects Oxford Economics’ commitment to serve its growing group of clients in the Americas and to meet the escalating demand for more rigorous and relevant decision support on global business, industry and economic trends.

Louis Celi has extensive experience in building international publishing, research and consulting activities. Mr. Celi began his career at Business International, a global information and advisory firm acquired by The Economist Group in 1986. While at The Economist, he started up the firm’s successful electronic publishing, research and thought leadership businesses and served as Publisher and SVP of the Economist Intelligence Unit. Mr. Celi has taken on the role of President of Oxford Economics, Americas, where he will oversee Oxford Economics’ business from NYC and work closely with the firm’s team of economists located in Philadelphia.

From there, Celi went to VAZT Global, Inc.:

Lou Celi Lou was formerly Senior Vice President and Publisher of the Economist Intelligence Unit. Lou was also a member of the Economist Group’s Americas Management Committee and served as the Chairman of the Group’s Electronic Publishing Committee. Prior to joining the EIU, Lou worked as Senior Vice President for Business International, a global research and advisory firm dedicated to helping multinationals do business abroad. At Business International, Lou worked with former Secretary of Agriculture Orville Freeman and Barack Obama, who he mentored in financial journalism. Lou is a frequent speaker at media industry and technology events, and he has authored several books, including Global Cash Management, Automating the Finance Function and Competing in the Digital Age. Lou served on the White House’s business advisory committee for Latin America during the Reagan administration.

From Celi’s LinkedIn profile we learn that he attended City University of New York City College, City University of New York-Brooklyn College, and Xaverian High School.

City College in Harlem (a part of the City University of New York) is where Obama organized students immediately after he left BIC, against Celi’s advice. He worked for NYPIRG then. Given the number of BIC employees, including Celi, who had connections to City College, one wonders if any of them helped Obama find that NYPIRG position. More from Celi’s profile:

Before joining Oxford, Mr. Celi was President of Llesiant, a technology firm affiliated with the Bureau of National Affairs in Washington DC. While at Llesiant, he set up the firm’s go-to-market strategy and led global business development. …

Mr. Celi has a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in English Literature and Certification of Education from Brooklyn College. He has a Masters of Arts from City College, where he studied writing and journalism with Kurt Vonnegut, Joseph Heller and Donald Barthelme.

Celi graduated from high school in 1969, which makes him about 10 years older than Obama.

Beth Noymer Levine: Levine told NPR that she was hired at BIC not long before Obama and that they both reported to the same person.

Levine and Obama worked on a variety of newsletters for companies doing business overseas. The newsletters were aimed at senior executives and had arcane titles like “Financing Foreign Operations” or “Investing, Licensing, and Trading Conditions Abroad.” … [BIC] was located near the United Nations, and many of the staffers, like Obama, had degrees in international relations rather than MBAs.

Levine refers to herself as Obama’s “First Colleague”. Levine founded a company called SmartMouth Communications:

SmartMouth Founder and Principal Beth Noymer Levine is a Communications Coach who is emerging as one of the country’s leading voices on how to prepare and deliver speeches and presentations that actually work for both the audience and the speaker. … Ms. Levine works with athletes and politicians, as well as with executives and other high-profile leaders.

In her 20-year career in communications, Ms. Levine has worked both agency-side, for public relations firms Burson-Marsteller and Dewe Rogerson in New York, and corporate-side, for NationsBank (now Bank of America) in Atlanta. … Ms. Levine holds certificates in Training and in Coaching from the American Society for Training & Development (ASTD). She has lectured and taught courses at New York University and at the University of Utah. She established SmartMouth Communications in 2005.

Beth Levine is a native of Boston, but currently operates from her home base of Salt Lake City. She has a degree in Economics from Franklin & Marshall College, and more recently completed a post-MBA program at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. A fun fact about Ms. Levine is that in her very first job after college, she and a young Barack Obama worked side by side at a New York consulting and publishing company.

A story in the Salt Lake City Tribune chronicled her [fawning, imho] memories of her time at BIC. She states that she and Obama “moved on” in 1985, which is not the official story. Not surprisingly, Levine was a staunch supporter of Obama’s 2008 campaign:

In 1985, both Obama and she moved on. The first colleagues didn’t keep in touch over the years. … But when Obama announced his presidential candidacy in February 2007, Levine jumped on board. The self-described feminist would have had a hard time not putting her weight behind Hillary Clinton if she hadn’t known what she knew about him. She and her husband, Hank, helped host last August Obama’s Park City fund-raiser, which she said brought in more than $200,000. She remembered her 15-year-old son, Nate, who came along, grumbling in boy-teen form, “He’s not going to remember you.” She stepped up to shake Obama’s hand, 24 years after first meeting him, and said, “Barack, Beth Noymer from Business International.” Following a big hug and introductions to her family, Obama looked at Nate and said, “‘Do you know how long I’ve known this young lady?'” Nate’s response, as Levine remembered it: “‘She’s not so young.'” But even her son left that night impressed, bowled over that several hours and hundreds of people later the candidate remembered his name. Obama sought out the Levines to say goodbye and hug again the woman he’d worked with so long ago. After saying “good luck,” she said it hit her: Obama was heading off to make history. “What are the chances that someone you had a young adult work experience with will go on to be president?” she said. “It’s surreal.”

Indeed it is “surreal”. It reminds me very much of a similarly-toned “wholesome story” told by Barbara Nelson. But I digress.

Susan Arterian Chang: The 2008 story in the Boston Globe quoted Chang:

“None of us were hobnobbing with multinational corporate executives,” said Susan Arterian Chang, a writer who worked alongside Obama. “They were boosters for multinationals and they thought globalism was the way we should be going,” Chang said.

Arterian Chang went on, with her husband Eugene, to found a newspaper:

SUSAN ARTERIAN CHANG, who is the founder, publisher and editor of The White Plains Watch, the newest newspaper in White Plains, said she ”won’t be a Pollyanna” but she does want to bring the city together, applaud its diversity and help mom-and-pop stores survive.

Ms. Chang formerly worked in book and financial publishing and was a freelance writer in Manhattan and Los Angeles before moving to White Plains in 1992. She started the monthly in November 1997 by pooling the money of herself and her husband, Eugene. Time will tell, she said, whether her vision of community is shared by enough other people to insure the paper’s survival.

Her LinkedIn profile tells us that she is

Director, Content Developer & Project Director, Field Guide to Investing in a Resilient Economy at Capital Institute

Blogger on Sustainable Finance and Investing at New York Society of Security Analysts Financial Professionals’ Post

and was

Founder and Publisher at The Impact Investor

Financial Writer at the Intersections of “The New Economy”

Founding Publisher at The White Plains Watch Community Newspaper

Freelance financial writer at Financial and Technology Publications

Foreign Exchange Analyst at Manufacturer’s Hanover Trust

Financial Writer at Business International [1982-1985]

Arterian Chang attended New York University – Leonard N. Stern School of Business and Reed College. She is approximately 58 years old, based upon her year of graduation.

William Millar: The same 2008 Boston Globe story spoke about a disagreement that Obama had with a colleague at BIC and quoted Millar:

Still, a belief in the primacy of markets as engines for both the creation of wealth and social progress prevailed at the company – as became evident in an office debate between Obama and a colleague over whether to trade with South Africa during apartheid.

Obama “made some comment like there should be a boycott of any company doing business there,” recalled William Millar, a writer for the money report. “I said he needed to realize that it’s the non-South African companies who were hiring blacks and giving them positions of authority with decent pay. That’s what accelerates change – not isolation.”

Dan Armstrong’s blog post, which disputed Obama’s version of life at BIC elicited a comment, allegedly from Millar:

October 30, 2007 at 8:17 am

Cathy Lazere calls Barack self-assured? That’s putting a nice spin on it. I found him arrogant and condescending. [That’s the Barry we know.]

The thing is, I worked next to Barack nearly every day he was at Business International–on many days angling for possession of the best Wang word processing terminal.

I had MANY discussions with Barack.

I can tell you this: even though I was an assistant editor (big doings at this “consulting firm”) and he was, well, he was doing something there, he certainly treated me like something less than an equal.

Funny thing… A journalism/political science major… Writing about finance … Pretending in his book to be an expert on interest rate swaps.

I remember trying to explain the nuance of these instruments to him in the cramped three Wang terminal space we called the bull pen. In contrast to his his liberal arts background, I had a degree in finance and Wall Street experience, so I knew what I was talking about.

But rather than learn from a City College kid, the Ivy Leaguer just sort of rolled his eyes. Condescendingly. [A habit his mother shared.] I’ll never forget it. God forbid he leave the impression that a mere editor like myself knew more about something than did Barack.

He was like that…

But know what? I can forgive him for being immature–which is probably all that was at the time. Don’t we all believe we know everything at just around that age?

That said…he was a lot older when he wrote his book. Mature enough by this time to realize that his account of his time at Business International could be described as embellishment.

Dan Kobal: Kobal is mentioned in this story: David Maraniss recounts one of the few times Obama ever lost his trademark cool in a public setting. The incident, reportedly in the hallway at Business International, a financial information outfit where Obama worked after college, was a shouting match over the morality of the CIA circa 1984.” Mariniss wrote, in typical fawning style:

In an office where Lou Celi was screaming out orders like a hard-bitten city editor to an overworked and stressed out staff, Obama never seemed flustered. He maintained the Hawaiian style, Cool head, main thing. But according to Dan Armstrong, who considered Obama a friend, there was one exception. Armstrong seeing Obama get into “a huge argument” with an older colleague named Dan Kobal. The subject was the CIA. “It was heated and brief. The argument was in the hallway,” Armstrong said. “It was pretty loud. I don’t think it was discrete at all. It touched on some deeply held beliefs of Barack’s…. I think it was uncomfortable. It was just the two of them…. Barack was attacking it and Dan was defending it.” Kobal did not remember the incident and said it was not his style to yell, but added, “I can’t say that Dan Armstrong is wrong.” He postulated that he and Obama might have been talking about Africa. Obama, he said, “may well have been” anti-CIA then, which Kobal was not. He believed that the CIA hired “good dedicated people” who did their job of gathering information.

I find nothing about Dan Kobal on the Web, although there are several Daniel Kobals in public records searches.  Maraniss spoke with Kobal; like Obama, did he change names to protect the “characters” in his book?   Did  “Kobal” have any specific reason to be pro-CIA?

William P. Looney: We know of Looney only through comments on Dan Armstrong’s blog. He may or may not have personally known Obama. Looney is apparently the person who first said that BIC was like a “high school with ashtrays,” so he likely did know Obama. Looney is Editor in Chief at Pharmaceutical Executive Magazine. He formerly was a director at Pfizer, Inc.

Looney attended Columbia University – School of International and Public Affairs, Connecticut College, and the London School of Economics and Political Science. He spent 9 years as Deputy Director at the Global Business Forum, 2 years as Manager of International Communications at Warner Lambert Corp., and was Senior Editor at The Economist from 1980 to 1987. The Economist purchased BIC. During those years, when Obama was at BIC, Looney

Edited Economist Intelligence Unit newsletter publications and authored multiclient studies to support featured profiles in flagship magazine. Assigned beats: Canada, corporate social responsibility.

Looney served on the UN’s Millenium Project. He writes for PharmaExec blog. In 2011, he was a presenter at the Rutgers Business School Healthcare Symposium.

So there’s some information about Obama’s co-workers at BIC.  This post will be updated as more information is discovered.  The following was written by a progressive

The question that may never go away: Who really is Barack Obama?

In his autobiography, “Dreams From My Fathers”, Barack Obama writes of taking a job at some point after graduating from Columbia University in 1983. He describes his employer as “a consulting house to multinational corporations” in New York City, and his functions as a “research assistant” and “financial writer”.

The odd part of Obama’s story is that he doesn’t mention the name of his employer. However, a New York Times story of 2007 identifies the company as Business International Corporation. Equally odd is that the Times did not remind its readers that the newspaper itself had disclosed in 1977 that Business International had provided cover for four CIA employees in various countries between 1955 and 1960.

The British journal, Lobster Magazine – which, despite its incongruous name, is a venerable international publication on intelligence matters – has reported that Business International was active in the 1980s promoting the candidacy of Washington-favored candidates in Australia and Fiji. In 1987, the CIA overthrew the Fiji government after but one month in office because of its policy of maintaining the island as a nuclear-free zone, meaning that American nuclear-powered or nuclear-weapons-carrying ships could not make port calls. After the Fiji coup, the candidate supported by Business International, who was much more amenable to Washington’s nuclear desires, was reinstated to power – R.S.K. Mara was Prime Minister or President of Fiji from 1970 to 2000, except for the one-month break in 1987.

In his book, not only doesn’t Obama mention his employer’s name; he fails to say when he worked there, or why he left the job. There may well be no significance to these omissions, but inasmuch as Business International has a long association with the world of intelligence, covert actions, and attempts to penetrate the radical left – including Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) – it’s valid to wonder if the inscrutable Mr. Obama is concealing something about his own association with this world.

#####

Photo courtesy of Daniel Case, English Wikipedia.

29 responses to “Taking Care of Business International Corporation: Obama’s Co-Workers

  1. Good research.
    In addition to other theories about why obama worked at this company, i would like to propose one more.
    With the personal documents obama uses, bc, ssn, etc, it would be difficult for him to get a job where there is a real, thorough background check. Think about it, They probably didn’t do a very thorough background check at the colleges or at the community organizer jobs and we know that nothing but covering up has been done since he got into politics.
    This job at bic would seem to be the only real job he ever had. And maybe the only reason he went to work there is because it may have been a place that didn’t do a thorough background check. Who knows how many other jobs he applied for that did a real background check and rejected him because he is a fraud.

    • Thanks. I forgot to say that most of the links go to photos of the people, if anyone’s curious about how they look. I really like Springer. He’s a trip! Speaking of trip, there was more that I found about the atmosphere at BIC. Beyond the “high school with ashtrays” comment. Seems there were some dopers there, too. Is that surprising, given what we know about Obama? I also read a comment (think it was on Armstrong’s blog) that said there was a guy there who wore makeup. Again …

      Another thing I should have said: Some of these names are common names and I tried as best I could to match up the people with their resumes and what was said about them. If I have anyone misidentified, I will be more than happy to correct the post. As people find more on these individuals, we can update the post.

      It’s fascinating to me the rarified atmosphere from which this poor son of a goatherding Kenyan and a “single mother on food stamps” from Kansas emerged. Most of these young turks did pretty well for themselves. It seems to me that, as with his associates and connections at Harvard Law, the powers that be at both BIC and the universities greased the skids for one Barack Obama. btw, someone who knew him at BIC referred to him as “Barry”, which I also found interesting, because he claimed that he left that name behind in CA, when he left Occidental for Columbia.

      And yet another thing: Nowhere did any of these co-workers even address the allegations (actually the NY Times fact) that BIC acted as a cover for CIA agents. BIC was bought out by The Economist group, which, over in the UK, is alleged to be associated with MI-6! Do we forget that Barry could have had a British passport as well as a Kenyan one, given that he DID hold both citizenships, in addition to his Indonesian and US citizenships?

      I remember those days when the CIA did, indeed, recruit college students.

      • Speaking of CIA – I believe it was Anderson Cooper who was also in the CIA for a short while. You know the Anderson Cooper who told all of the lies about the birth certificate and admonished anyone who dared go on his show to talk about it. He was the prime cover-up person on CNN.

        • Are you kidding me? Cooper was in the CIA? Unbelievable. I look at the expertise that all these vocal ex-colleagues of Barry’s have and think about how all of them could use that talent to further his political career. Data mining? Check. Computer specialists? Check. JOURNALISTS? Check. Founder of the MSNBC WEBSITE? Check. I’m just sayin’. I found so much more but I rushed the post because alfy asked. Most of the rest is about the company itself. I might make a part two, just about that company. We’ll see.

    • Excellent research Miri. The ties that bind!

      Jim – But wouldn’t being an ice cream scooper at Baskin Robbins in Hawaii be considered a real job? After all he was new to the area – straight from Connecticut where he got his social security card!

      • Now that I think about it, wouldn’t FMD be his “first colleague” in the hot dog business?

        • Did he need a vendor’s license to work on the street? Was he paid under the table? Was he using the CT social security number while “employed” for Frank Marshall Davis?

          • Some of these people at BIC (just realized that I reversed those initials many times; will correct it). Anyway, some of these people have connections to Connecticut. That made me wonder, too, but those New England states are all small and close together so maybe it’s meaningless. WHO got him the job there after Columbia? Why there? Why the discrepancy between what he said he organized students at City College in Harlem to do? He says to “recycle” but others said that didn’t fit and more likely (imho, too) it was something to do with APARTHEID, his favorite topic, if not unilateral nuclear disarmament.

    • Give what one of his colleagues said, about how he didn’t really seem to do much there (when has he EVER done much, in the IL state senate, the US senate, or the WH?) and how arrogant and condescending he was, as if he were ABOVE the others, it sounds very much to me as if he was almost a “ghost employee” put on the payroll because of his connections–whether it be Brzezinski, his mother’s connections at the Ford Foundation, his father’s rich benefactresses, Lolo’s connections, or those wealthy, connected Pakistanis he hung out with in CA and NYC. A “connected guy” all around. Maybe Bill Ayers, too. Who knows? He always seems to have gotten by with a little help from his friends, so who pulled the strings to get him on there? It certainly wasn’t his writing ability or editing talent, based upon the few items of “original” work we’ve seen from those days. I wonder now if he used this so-called editing experience to get the position at Harvard Law Review? Come to think of it, any of these colleagues who WERE talented writers might have helped him with his Law Review presidential essay.

  2. Looney ? Well Miri, I have a crazy time for you I am just getting into across the hall. You cannot make this stuff up Miri ! Good post.

    http://wtpotusresearchblog.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/the-looney-bell/

    hummm…who is William P ?

    With whom did he work with at BIC? We know some of the names: Norman Wellen, Gary L. Springer, Paul R. Strauss, Cathy Lazere, Gary A. Seidman, Daniel D. Armstrong, Louis J. Celi, Beth Noymer Levine, Susan Arterian Chang, William Millar, Dan Kobal, and William P. Looney.

    Paul R Strauss ? Is he the same Miri ?

    http://jeffersonsrebels.blogspot.com/2010/03/smrstrauss-total-reveal-their-tangled.html

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    From The Beginning | Wtpotus Research Blog wtpotusresearchblog.wordpress.com/2012/04/17/from-the-beginning/
    Apr 17, 2012 … Cecil Goeldner worked for Boeing for years near his Wichita farm. He said he …. [ 9] Mahfouz personally owned a 20% stake in BCCI. He was …

    http://wtpotusresearchblog.wordpress.com/2012/08/09/cecil-goeldner/

    Wow Miri, the way it keeps going in circles no ?

  3. http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=92337754
    Levine and Obama worked on a variety of newsletters for companies doing business overseas. The newsletters were aimed at senior executives and had arcane titles like “Financing Foreign Operations” or “Investing, Licensing, and Trading Conditions Abroad.” Even in a company filled with smart people, Obama made an impression.

    “I always say, he was very smooth and smart and together, and I was 23,” Levine joked. “I felt like a human train wreck next to him.”

    Obama was even younger. But colleagues say he was mature beyond his years. True to its name, Business International had a global flavor. It was located near the United Nations, and many of the staffers, like Obama, had degrees in international relations rather than MBAs. It was the kind of place where a young person could take on a lot of responsibility, and you quickly learned to speak the language of the financial professionals for whom you were writing.

    “You were thrown in the deep end, and you learned a lot, and you had to pretend to be more of an expert than you were,” said Dan Armstrong, who supervised one of the newsletters.

    Obama’s Own Take On His First Job

    In his memoir, Obama recalls writing an article about interest-rate swaps — financial contracts in which parties agree to swap fixed and floating interest rates. His time at Business International rates only a few pages in the memoir, mostly as an example of the road not taken, when Obama opted for community organizing instead of what he called “stocks and bonds and the pull of respectability.”

    Armstrong said Obama’s book exaggerates just how respectable Business International was, with its description of suits and ties and meetings with German bond traders. There was no dress code, Armstrong said. And there was nothing corporate about it.

    “It was a company full of low-paid, hard-working, fun-loving young people,” Armstrong said. “It wasn’t part of a high-powered consulting or finance world. It was a little sweatshop.”

    Armstrong was shocked when Obama quit after a year, without even having another job lined up. Most news accounts of Obama’s career omit the New York chapter altogether. Levine says she understands that.

    “I can see why CNN would skip over it,” Levine said. “I mean, a lot of people had stops along the way in their careers that don’t exactly fit the rest of the story. And maybe it was enough of an exposure for him to the corporate world to be like, ‘OK, that’s not exactly what I want.’ ”

    Think she knows him Miri ?
    How Stuart Levine — a thief and con man — became star witness … http://www.suntimes.com/news/crime/8479435-418/how-thief-con-man-became-star-witness.ht...
    Oct 29, 2011 … To most people, Stuart Levine probably appears unassuming enough. At 65, he works at a kiosk in a suburban shopping mall selling electronic …

    • page not found on that last link. screenshot?

    • Obama would not have been way younger than levin if he worked there from 83-84. He would have been almost same age as Levine given maybe a year. She says she was 23….in 1983 he would have been 22…in 04 23, so when is she talking about?

      • Yep. I noticed that, too. They’re almost the same age. Must be. So when did Barry REALLY work there? Was it perhaps during his lost year BEFORE he went to Columbia? And maybe from BIC he was recruited to infiltrate SDS? One of them also says that she and Barry left together, in 1985. Barry went to Chicago in 1985, but he worked at NYPIRG first. More of the typical problems with timelines and the “official” story.

        • Hey, Barry Bo could be a kid from some exundergrounder, that had to flee and leave their kid with someone else in the sixties. Maybe he really helped in the 1981 Brinks robbery , as some of them fled on foot and were never identified. There were many robberies all over New York, N. Jersey, Connecticut, and other cities by these scumbags to pay for their explosives and their livlihoods. Maybe that’s why Obama had apartments in shady parts of town, and Maybe even in Mass. , his rusted out car he kept parked in a noparking area was just his decoy car. Why else would you leave it there over and over? I’m just jiving…sorta…..

  4. Don’t you think it’s interesting that Seidman has such deep connections to MSNBC and other Obama-loving media outfits?

    I found the stuff about BIC being interested in Fiji pertinent, too, given Obama’s mother’s involvement in Indonesia, which is not that far from Fiji.

    • Just because you haven’t found anything on BIC and Philipines or Indonesia don’t think they couldn’t be involved. It’s been known CIA use them often. Don’t forget , it was a group similar to BIC created in early 1900’s American Business International Corp. , created by the Jeckyll Island crowd that created the Federal Reserve and totally with the help of Government to establish their hedgemonic autocracy.
      One problem for me is maybe Obama never worked there and BIC is good at being his cover. It’s hard imaging Obama could write anything and could exist more than a week without them finding out. No, I think their group is a great cover….notice He spends very little time telling us about working there, yet it is the one place where there are several people telling stories about his time there. No where else hardly does anybody ever really tell us anything other than silly little antedotes just to collaborate his where abouts. BIC is interesting in that they may know who he really is and what they do involving CIA is interesting, but I think it’s another fairy tale .Unless maybe he just hid out there for a year, and traveled extensively using BIC as cover and just pretended to work there.

      • I noticed that, too, alfy. It’s mostly the same group of people providing the cover. The same few “found” by the media and giving interviews. Was it all a cover? I do think it’s weird that not one of them mentioned the very public speculation that it was CIA-associated. Except for the one guy who Maraniss says told about that argument Barry had in the hallway, where Barry was allegedly criticizing the CIA, but “Kobal” the mystery man was defending it. At some point, I might… well,maybe I shouldn’t telegraph what I might do. Let’s say that I didn’t exhaust all research possibilites.

        • Miri, you can check too, that CIA was involved heavily in India at various times, another place Ann supposedly shows up as well as Ford F. and Geithner. Of course many coups and assasinations are CIA attributed….from Guatemala, El Salvador, Bolivia, Brazil, Peru,Nicaragua Haiti, the list goes on of the involvement of CIA and these governments , usually involving giant corporations, foundation funding , anthropologists, missionaries as information gatherers and so on. Much of this is established fact and what is not established is strongly speculated.The Kissingers, Brzezinskis and people like them are heavily involved and there are some that consider Kissinger a murderer! Ask yourself why he hasn’t left from administration to administration too. Certainly when BIC was taken over by Economic Group “Intelligence” you don’t think it stopped.

  5. You reckon this is Trump’s big surprise at the Rep. Con.?

    http://obamareleaseyourrecords.blogspot.com/2012/08/trump-people-will-be-surprised-at-whats.html

    “Donald Trump: Many People Will Be Surprised At What Is
    About To Be Released Concerning Obama’s Background
    Donald Trump @ Twitter”

  6. good comment from “americathebeautiful” on ulsterman:

    http://theulstermanreport.com/2012/08/23/valerie-jarrett-tells-obama-sleep-in-and-then-take-the-rest-of-the-day-off/

    “The building process of the man who calls himself Obama began a very long time ago….simply check the Wiki education timelines of both Ayers and Obama.

    It all began well before his communist mentor Frank Marshall Davis in Hawaii got hold of Obama..but FMDavis did his part…then…The college years of ushering through Columbia were managed by Communist/ terrorist / anarchist ….Bill Ayers …..undoubtly the man who also did all of the Foreign accepted student Barry Soteros class work.

    As Wayne Allen Root, Classmate with the identical major as Obama, as well as the class president….has stated, he has never found a single person who can state they met or saw the man who calls himself Obama….while at Columbia in the same graduating class….Fox found 400 students from that same class…not a single one knew or ever saw Obama.

    Also…not surprisingly….Bill Ayers also moved to New York at the same time Obama states he did…his wife Bernadine Dohrne, another terrorist, anarchist, communist was at the Sidley New York office until Michelle needed
    ushering through the Chicago offices of Sidley during her internship and hire at Sidley…and Berndine Dohrne left her husband Bill Ayers in New York to usher Michelle in Chicago

    So we are expected to believe the ridiculous coincidence that Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn just happened to come out of hiding in the underground in 1981 from being the most wanted FBI fugitives…just as Obama starts college…
    Thomas Ayers happens to get Obama into Columbia …and pay his tuition ….and Bill Ayers happens to move to New York…just in time to usher Obama…..after being in hiding for 15.years..No coincidence here….
    Dohrn, Ayers terrorist wife after 4 years moves from New York– without her husband– to Chicago…..coincidentally to usher Michelle Robinson now Obama…through Chicago’s Sidley Law firm –where once again her father-in-law has interceded to get her hired…one would be a moron not to believe Thomas Ayers interceded to hire Michelle Obama and intern Barack too…building bonifides really…does anyone really believe either one of them even took the bar exam?

    Then Valerie Jarrett steps into the ushering position…and there she sits….ushering managing arsonist ..IslamoCommunist on display

    Nice to know the man who calls himself Obama is a scheme……the man in our White House is a scheme …a very sick, terrifyingly dangerous scheme…aided and abetted by the haters of the United States of Ameica, from all corners of the globe

    “The man who calls himself Obama”….a term straight from the files of the CPUSA, yes the Communist Party of the USA….that man brought to us by violent unrepentant terrorists, guilty of sedition and MURDER of US policemen and heralded from the FBI’s Most Wanted List….that’s who put the man who calls himself Obama in our White House

    Ayers first child Malik

    Obama’s first child Malia…both honouring the Islamo Communist Anarchist— Malik Shabbazz better known as Malcom X

    Both anti-American IslamoCommunist….bent on destroying the USA….remember Ayers stated 25 million Americans would have to be eliminated ….To an undercover FBI agent who has sworn to same

    Add it up…Obama was sent into Chicago, the beehive of Communism in the USA, by his Hawaiian communist mentor, Frank Marshal Davis, for ushering to….right where Obama sits…
    Manchurian doesnt begin to cover it

    The world has been lit afire by a hate monger, a narcissist…a Communist…to metasticize his vengeance ….

    As the FBI likes to say…There are no coincidences…”

    • I read in the paper today that to donate to Barry, the number is 62262. Add it up. No coincidences? Supposedly, that stands for Obama on the telephone keypad.

      Let’s not forget, either, that Barry’s avowed girlfriend Genevieve Cook was AT BANK STREET COLLEGE WITH AYERS, STUDYING THE SAME SUBJECT.

      • lol.
        number of the beast is 6 threescore 6 = 6, 3 x 20, 6
        6,20,20,20,6 = 6,2,2,6,2 ??? …
        and this tidbit from wiki
        “There are several interpretations-translations for the meaning of the phrase “Here is Wisdom, Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast” where the peculiar Greek word ψηφισάτω (psefisato) is used. Possible translations include not only “to count”, “to reckon” but also “to vote” or “to decide”.[6]”

    • I didn’t think that sounded like ulsterman. Good comment by a wise commenter.

  7. Ben Waldenburg

    You all do know a book is on eBay that apparently has some hidden message in it, it was given to a Republican as a gift when he left office, something big happened at BI.

  8. what book on eBay are you referring to and what republican?????

  9. http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tim-graham/2013/07/13/audacity-myth-how-media-ignored-obamas-lies-about-his-own-biography-and-

    Another co-worker at BIC is identified in this story:

    “… In another stunning passage from the same chapter of the Maraniss book, a passage that Vanity Fair did not excerpt — perhaps because it wasn’t about Obama’s love life-Obama describes his brief tenure after graduation from Columbia at a place called Business International, which produced newsletters and updates for corporations seeking to do business abroad. Obama boasted, “I had my own office, my own secretary, money in the bank. Sometimes, coming out an interview with Japanese financiers or German bond traders, I would catch my reflection in the elevator doors-see myself in a suit and tie, a briefcase in my hand-and for a split second, I would imagine myself as a captain of industry, barking out orders, closing the deal, before I remembered who it was that I wanted to be and felt pangs of guilt for my lack of resolve.”

    Maraniss found these recollections were “seen as distortions and misrepresentations by many of the people who had worked with him.” They said Obama had no secretary, and his office was the size of a cubicle, barely large enough to fit a desk. The dress code was informal, and people in his position rarely wore suits. “He dressed like a college kid,” said his supervisor Lou Celi.

    Ralph Diaz, the company’s vice president for publications, thought Obama was embellishing his role for dramatic effect “in a book that reads more like a novel.” He said “Obama worked at a very, very low position there. . . . The part about seeing his reflection in the elevator doors? There were no reflections there. . . . He was not in this high, talking-to-Swiss-bankers kind of role. He was in the back rooms checking things on the phone.”

    Another colleague characterized it with equal distaste: “He retells the story as the temptation of Christ . . . the young idealistic would-be community organizer who gets a nice suit and barely escapes moving into the big mansion with the white folks.” …” h/t Gordo

    We needn’t point out that Barry, WAAWIAB, did move into a BIG MANSION in Chicago, shortly afterward.

    What is WAAWIAB? White African-American who identifies as black. I should copyright that! 😉

    btw, a lot of the book is online: http://books.google.com/books/about/Barack_Obama.html?id=EoWwT1tYm1YC

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