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Just the title of Alex Gibney’s documentary Casino Jack And The United States Of Money suggests the absurd scope of the Abramoff scandal, which has more tentacles than a stack of Japanese demon-rape comics. Gibney has enough material for a dozen movies here, but his attempt at an overview, however unwieldy, paints one hell of a nauseating.


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Casino Jack and the United States of Money 2010 - Casino Jack and the United States of Money 2010 - User Reviews - IMDb When mega-lobbyist Jack Abramoff was sentenced to jail in early 2006, he was seen as the personification of corruption, along with Tom DeLay and Bob Ney.
But as "Casino Jack and the United States of Money" shows, Abramoff and the individuals associated with him were just the tip of the iceberg.
Alex Gibney's documentary takes the same approach to its topic that his previous documentary "Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room" does, looking at the roots of the main character, and how deregulation led to the culmination.
I had read in Al Franken's book "The Truth with Jokes" about Abramoff's fleecing of the Tigua Indians and DeLay's promotion of the Mariana Islands to hide the garment industry's sweatshops there.
The documentary looks at those, and goes a little further into Abramoff's role in the college Republicans, alliance with Angolan autocrat Jonas Savimbi, and more.
One of the most important points is how Abramoff and Ralph Reed used religious fundamentalism, specifically how Reed was making large sums of money through links to Indian casinos while pontificating against gambling.
But the most important topic that the documentary brings up is that this is neither "a few bad apples" nor a conspiracy.
This happened because the American people let it happen by neglecting to take democracy seriously.
Prevention of such events in the future requires the American people to stay vigilant of their government, and of corporations.
Everyone should see this documentary.
Jack Abramoff was very good at what he did, which was taking money from people, such as at casinos in Indian reservations or with making deals in the Marianas, as favors.
Lots of money was thrown to Jack and his cronies like Michael Scanlon as continue reading they were giving protection, or just acting as lobbyists do, which is often, at best, shady work and at worst downright immoral.
It's a story of how a guy like Abramoff, a smooth talker and hardcore conservative, almost got away with his bribery and extortion tactics because, basically, Washington itself would condone most of his actions until he crossed the line.
Smith couldn't get the time of day.
What's intriguing in the film is how it looks at the system of lobbyists in a light not too unlike director Alex Gibney's previous documentary Enron.
There's a certain lifestyle to be maintained with these guys like Abramoff and even his buddy in arms Tom Delay, almost a sort of alpha-male process of living through greed.
And some of the best parts of the film actually aren't about the Indian Reservation scandal, but the back-story is what really sucks in a viewer.
Abramoff was at the top of the crop, a College Republican at a time when Republicans looked to be on top with Regan in office and a fervent anti-Communists streak going through their methodology.
Most amusingly we see an anti-Commie propaganda film Abramoff produced called Red Scorpion, featuring Dolph Lundgren and Abramoff's fascination with spies, which would carry over into his career on his own.
Another heartbreaking story shown in the film is check this out of the Marianas, and what happened with free-reign unregulated capitalism.
At this particular place businesses could work without regulation, and so they paid practically slave wages the workers were at best indentured servantsand because the Marianas were or still are apart of the US, they could send off clothes to be sold as "Made in the USA".
But when a congressman tried to blow the lid off the corruption going on- not to mention the sex trade- Abramoff was hired by people who wanted everything to be shown as squeaky clean, and reporters and Republican congressmen were flown down, shown everything was honky dory, and then got their R-and-R on at five star hotels.
Ultimately the Marianas were left devastated when other treaties came in to regulate, but it was a demonstration of what could be done, rather bafflingly, by an unfettered "free market" - in large part thanks to Abramoff's kick-backs and reports from such free-market people as Delay and Dana Rorbacher.
The testimonies give a lot of juicy and simply insightful information, and we really get to know how this mind of Abramoff's worked in relation to the power dynamic in Washington.
He wasn't a politician, but he could do one better by feeding into the kick-backs and campaign contribution frenzy that is often the name of the game in DC.
He did, ultimately, go into illegal territory, but the scary thing is that he could have potentially gotten away with all of it, and did for years the fake corporation, for example, that was run by a surfer-dude and laundered hundreds of thousands that Abramoff didn't want to claim as income.
It's a tale that has, at times, a multitude of details, especially when covering the Indian Reservation casino scandal.
But in a way I liked how detailed it was; it gets to a point where Gibney keeps giving us these facts and notes of interest, and it just builds up to this: how corrupt and intricate can this get?
It's firmly in the form of a "documentary", but with a much larger team and budget article source higher production values than that category label might at first lead you to expect.
For example, many scenes that could be nothing more than dry transcript reading are in fact voiced by an actor over an image of a moving reel tape player as well as the printed materials.
The film is not particularly "slanted" or "one-sided" although it's fairly easy to figure out where the filmmakers sympathies lieand doesn't try hard to "demonize" any individual although some subjects do a pretty good job of demonizing themselves.
The film's main challenge is to circumscribe the large and somewhat ill-defined subject of money's influence on U.
Using the Jack Abramoff scandal as watch casino jack and the united states of money framework to do that is inspired, but still barely enough.
All the different sorts of scams that even that one individual was connected with can be a bit unwieldy quick, how are garment sweatshops, Indian casinos, and a fleet of gambling ships related to each other?
The film's non distribution is watch casino jack and the united states of money don't take it as indicative of the quality.
As is usual for "Participant" films, this film wants you to think for yourself and avoids "blood boiling".
That also seems to mean it hasn't got enough commercial potential to get the full attention of the right people.
You have to seek it out - it won't find you.
Lots of psychological background information about what may have made various people tick is presented.
I found much of it pretty scary.
Several political operatives -including some with a very different public persona- are shown to be driven by a "win at any cost" mentality and to have no sense of fairness nor appropriateness let alone any discernible personal morals.
Quite a few are shown to be driven by a "spy novel mentality", and to have played at being guerrilla soldiers.
When the least offensive word to describe people is "paranoid", I quake in my boots.
There's at least one case of a Luddite revulsion against modern technology and modern society in general, motivated by a rosy fantasy of small village life.
And there's at least one explicit case -and several more implicit ones- of someone so totally engrossed in "doing a good job" that they only think about "the big picture" when reality clubs them over the head once every few years.
The film lays out pretty clearly the tight connections between lobbyists and the administration in power at that time.
It quickly moves on after convincing the viewer that lobbyists couldn't bend our government into doing something it didn't already sort of want to do anyway.
In the end, the film tries to make the case that we're not talking about one bad apple, nor even about lots of bad apples, but about something about the barrel that causes apples to go bad.
And the film suggests what that might be.
One politician whose career was upended by the scandal even explicitly says the words "public funding of campaigns".
I was surprised listening to the people around me in the theater that even though the film's projection of this message seemed very plain to me, it could be completely missed by many viewers.
While the film mostly focuses on the Jack Abramoff scandal, it does mention the more recent financial crisis, and how campaign contributions and influence peddling may have contributed it.
The film very briefly states its point that scores of nameless participants in the system can -and continue to- do far more damage than one rogue "super" lobbyist ever did.
First, in regard to CASINO JACK AND THE UNITED STATES OF MONEY, Alex Gibney obviously is spreading himself too thin.
Like most directors given an Oscar, he suddenly thinks he needs to cover every sub-genre in his field in his case, feature documentariesas evidenced by the quality of the six he has released since winning the Academy Award for his masterful TAXI TO THE DARK SIDE in early 2008.
CASINO JACK is no exception to this slide.
The title and opening imply the movie's main subject will be the way in which the U.
House of Representatives' Tom "The Hammer" DeLay, R-TX used millions of dollars of Native American gambling profits to illegally force sky bingo bonus withdraw Texas state legislature to dole out a half dozen congressional seats stolen from northern states through the U.
Census counting of illegal aliens to his own country-clubbing GOP cronies.
However, the first hour of this film is devoted to a peripheral sideshow involving DeLay's go-between with the Native Americans, "Casino Jack" Abramoff, and some Asian sex slaves duped into Northern Marianas Island sweat shops, chained to their sewing machines, raped by their foremen and forced to have abortions while dozens of "investigating" evangelical Christian GOP congressmen golfed at a five-star Hyatt Regency with Jack and Tom a couple miles away.
Furthermore, Gibney skims over the relationship between DeLay, Abramoff and the GOP-hijacked pipeline manufacturer ENRON in one brief sentence, politely skipping over how ENRON intentionally bankrupted the state of California because Arnold Schwarzenegger did not want to wait for the next SCHEDULED election to become governor.
C'mon, he's already done a whole feature on this; couldn't he have had at least a TWO-sentence reprise here?
Finally, Gibney uses his exclusive interview footage with DeLay, jailed Ohio Congressman Bob Ney, R-OH and other members of the young Republican Class of 1984 which pulled off the recent economic coup d'etat against the American middle class to lob a series of softball questions that probably had Michael Moore falling out of his chair with hysterical laughter.
If only CASINO JACK had a little of Moore's humor, its running time might have seemed closer to its actual 2 hours than 5 or 6.
This movie shows most of that money went for Jack and political soul mates to live the life of bazillionaires while rubbing shoulders at resorts with George W.
Bush and most of the other notable Republicans of the times.
All the while, Jack and his financial thugs were disparaging the natives, chortling that they were the stupidest rich people in the world.
Now, to save face, these same dupes that were fleeced have to pay to have books written in an effort to paint black white to borrow a phrase that one talking head in this movie says was Jack Abramoff's stock-in-trade.
Watching Casino Jack And The United States Of Money, you can't help but realize it's from the same guy who made Enron, a great documentary with what is pretty much the same type of subject.
That's why I can't quite the newest from director Alex Gibney a particularly great movie.
Sure, it's fun and interesting and the subject is interesting, but Enron blew my mind.
I do, although highly recommend this film.
The film's a documentary on Jack Abramoff, a politician who appeared nice at first but ended up screwing over one too many people.
The film director could not get Abramoff to be in the film as he is still serving his jail sentence.
This is both a good thing and a bad thing.
On one hand, it makes it so you get to hear from a play games and win of interesting alternatives.
On the other hand, it's not as interesting if we don't get to hear from his side.
The film manages to be a documentary and be entertaining, a hard feat for a documentary to accomplish.
Alex Read article is a talented director, and obviously know what he's doing with this type of material.
Although not as good as this director's other film about political greed and scandals, the interesting subject, great interviewees, and fun execution make me highly recommend Casino Jack And The United States Of Money.
Alex Gibney knows how to make a documentary.
Like good documentaries, "Casino Jack and the United States of Money" is educational and informative.
Unlike great documentaries, it is neither emotionally-resonating nor interesting.
This film lacked anything to get me invested in it.
The opening, introducing me to Jack Abramoff sky bingo bonus withdraw all the players, was well researched and potentially interesting but very dry.
Although I didn't find it enthralling, explosive or hilarious, I thought it could have been important but it doesn't have the timing that the more popular documentaries have.
It may well have to do with the fact that the pond scum explored in this doc about ripping off American Indians is so pervasive in the American political system is why we hide in dark theatres getting lost in contrived dreams rather than deal with the reality of these leeches in Armani suits with tentacles capable of getting the ear of some of the most powerful pols in DC.
Given the choice of a spike in blood pressure or zoning out on an insipid comedy or unrealistic suspense drama where the good guy triumphs most of us choose gauged by the miscreants huge take and light sentences the latter.
Casino Jack and the United States of Money is a mostly sober telling of super lobbyist Jack Abramhoff's rise and fall as he wheels and deals with not only shaking down American Indians with useful idiots for sale such as former Congressmen Bob Ney, Tom Delay and Ralph Reed but also involvement with Asian sweat shop owners and mob tied floating casinos.
For Jack and his slimy cohorts Neil Volz and Michael Scanlon it was all about the green and coming up with creative ways to extract it from clients which they did in millions.
Doc film maker Alex Gibney does watch casino jack and the united states of money fine job of presenting the duplicitous practices of all involved diagramming for the viewer how money is funneled to get around campaign finance laws and keep the powers that be hands clean in the process.
He retains his liberal credentials by hammering home the point it is mainly Republicans with their hands out but Congressional minority leader Reid of Nevada as games and money as Ted Kennedy "dim son" and former Congressman from RI, Patrick Kennedy are noted briefly getting a pretty hefty chunk of change as well.
It is all a very dispiriting to view Casino Jack and the DC crowd gouging rather than serving made even more so by an insider that states these smoke and mirror practices are still in place today and will continue to be as long as money talks and campaign reform is kept at bay and an apathetic public views it as standard operational procedure.
Gee, I wonder if they are showing a Laurel and Hardy down at the multiplex today?
This is an interesting documentary whose effects are still being felt and whose ending has not yet been written.
The movie concentrates on the illegal influence peddling and money laundering of Jack Abramoff, an ideological Republican.
It starts with his college days which also shows clips of Karl Rove and Ralph Reed as a college student.
While the film mentions Rove by name, it never connects him to any wrong doing.
Rove's film is called "Bush's Brain.
The musical score was hit and miss.
The production needed better editing and shortening.
The problem of campaign financing is that it has evolved into an overt form of legalized bribery.
It is still with us today.
Until this is changed our Republic is in peril to well financed special interest groups.
Occasional F-bomb, no sex, no nudity.
In Fort Lauderdale 2001, Greek tycoon Gus Boulis, who runs SunCruz casino ships, is gunned down.
This is the beginning of the end for Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
He has built a career coning native groups, corrupted politics, and backslapping all the way to the highest level of Republican officials.
This is an exhaustive look at one of the reasons why American politics is watch casino jack and the united states of money corrupt and how it has ingrained into the system.
It is also a fascinating look at Abramoff's personality.
Without a doubt, this is definitely ignored or panned by the political right.
The big question for this two hour long documentary is whether the story is understandable and compelling.
This is a simple to understand story.
The story is eye-opening.
It is compelling for anybody who wants to know what is going on.

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Casino Jack and the United States of Money (2010) Watch Online in Full length! Watch Casino Jack and the United States of Money Online. In Casino Jack and the United States of Money, A probing investigation into the lies, greed and corruption surrounding D.C. super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his cronies. This movie was released in the year 2010.


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His latest documentary is called Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
His new documentary, Casino Jack and the United States of Money, focuses on the rise and fall of disgraced Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
We also speak with David Sickey, a member of the Tribal Council of the Coushatta Tribe, and Tom Rodgers, a lobbyist and member of the Blackfeet tribe sky bingo bonus withdraw was a key whistleblower in the Abramoff case.
His latest documentary is called Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Seven days ago, the Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling to allow corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money to elect and defeat candidates.
In a five-to-four decision, the conservative members of the court argued that corporations and unions have First Amendment rights and that the government cannot impose restrictions on their political speech.
The documentary is by the Academy Award-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney.
It focuses on the rise and fall of disgraced Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who is now serving time in jail for defrauding American Indian tribes, bribing public officials, and evading taxes.
In a moment, Alex Gibney will join us here in Park City, but first, a clip from Casino Jack.
NEWS REPORT: The government says Abramoff has admitted to bribing as many as twenty members of Congress.
ALICE FISHER: His activities went far beyond lawful lobbying.
MIKE WALLER: He was the number one lobbyist in Washington, who could get you sky bingo bonus withdraw touch with the best and most influential members of Congress.
NEWS REPORT: When the story broke, President Bush publicly tried to distance himself from Jack Abramoff.
BOB NEY: You know, all of a sudden, nobody remembered Jack Abramoff.
BOB NEY: Of course Bush knew him.
TOM RODGERS: We had no idea that it would lead to the resignation of Tom DeLay, to the conviction of Bob Ney, to Tony Rudy, to Neil Volz.
So many people were pulled into this web: Ralph Reed, John Doolittle, Karl Rove, Dick Armey, Conrad Burns, Don Young, Grover Norquist.
It was all about the money.
AMY GOODMAN: An excerpt from Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
The filmmaker Alex Gibney joins us here in Park City.
In 2007, Alex won an Academy Award for his documentary Taxi to the Dark Side.
He also made the film Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.
David Sickey is a member of the Tribal Council of the Coushatta Tribe.
Talk about the significance of going back in time a bit to Jack Abramoff, what could look like a really interesting historical piece, and the Supreme Court decision that just came out.
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, I think the Supreme Court decision suddenly pulls these events from the past into the present with unbelievable force.
But what the Supreme Court decision does is to show just how — I mean, as much — the tools that Jack had to work with, now anybody like Jack, a lobbyist who wants to really push a political agenda, can do so with unbelievable power, just by eliciting the aid of this web page amounts of corporate money.
AMY GOODMAN: Now, go back, for people who, when asked, Jack Abramoff — is it a drink?
Tell us the story in a nutshell.
ALEX GIBNEY: Jack Abramoff is a lobbyist, or was a lobbyist.
But Jack Abramoff really is better understood as a political zealot.
He was a college Republican who came to some prominence with his friends Grover Norquist and Ralph Reed, as they began to enter the political arena with a kind of a radical agenda for sort of extreme free market views and also a very sort of radical anti-Soviet agenda.
He then launched some rather — he was also a movie producer at times, doing a rather unique genre, which was to produce political action thrillers, which were actually very ideological in tone.
In one of them, called Red Scorpion, which stars the action hero Dolph Lundgren, he —- AMY GOODMAN: Which was supported by the South African apartheid regime.
ALEX GIBNEY: Which was supported by the South African apartheid regime.
The film tries to resuscitate the career of Jonas Savimbi, a rather brutal dictator.
But from there, Jack launched his career -— with the ascent of the Republicans in 1994, Jack launched his career as a lobbyist in Washington, DC.
And he had tremendous credentials among kind of the conservative community, the movement conservative community, and that allowed him access to people in power.
With access to people in power, he could sell that access to clients who wanted to buy that access.
In fact, he was in the mainstream.
He was very much a power broker in Washington, DC, very good relationships with Karl Rove, President Bush, and particularly Tom DeLay, the former Majority Whip.
He was a guy who really bought and sold politicians, is really what he did.
NARRATOR: To reach his goal, he had to get to one man: Tom DeLay.
TOM DELAY: Jack Abramoff was a committed conservative.
He was well known in the conservative movement.
And I dealt with him no differently than I dealt with any other lobbyist.
NARRATOR: Jack was not like any other lobbyist.
He had a very special relationship with Tom DeLay.
He took him on trips to Russia, Scotland and the South Pacific.
Jack is one of a kind.
I mean, Jack Abramoff could sweet talk a dog off a meat truck.
This is the guy.
One of a kind.
One of a kind.
AMY GOODMAN: That, a clip from Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Alex, go on from there and talk about Tom DeLay.
Interestingly, at your premier here at the Sundance Film Festival, one of those who were in the audience was Bob Ney, who went to jail, the congressman.
ALEX GIBNEY: Congressman Bob Ney spent seventeen years in a federal — seventeen months, I should say, in a federal penitentiary.
I mean, when we screened the film here, Bob had never seen it before.
And I was unsure a little bit how he was going to react.
And Bob came out of the audience to talk to people afterwards, and a lot of people were very interested, because Bob is very candid about how this influence-peddling process works.
AMY GOODMAN: And Tom DeLay?
ALEX GIBNEY: Tom DeLay would not be like — that would not be his view.
His view would be, let the money rush down like great waters.
AMY GOODMAN: So his wish was answered by the Supreme Court.
I think the Click at this page Court was channeling Tom DeLay when they issued their recent decision.
AMY GOODMAN: But Tom DeLay is out of office now.
How does it tie into this?
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, Tom DeLay is out of office now, but I think the point is that —- AMY GOODMAN: Forced to resign.
ALEX GIBNEY: He was forced to resign as a result of this scandal.
But before we do, I wanted to introduce our next guest, who has -— well, just beginning to speak out, really the first watch casino jack and the united states of money in your film, Alex.
And my family is Native American.
And I came back to work in DC, and in working with tribes, and some tribal leaders who had trusted me throughout my career reached out to me a time in early 2002 because of threats that had been made to them regarding the lobbying practices of a lobbyist who was representing them.
And I received a number of phone calls and was asked to meet with a number of tribal leaders, because they felt that their lobbyist was defrauding them and cheating them, and they had no idea what they were paying for with these large, large amounts of money.
Bernie -— AMY GOODMAN: How did you go about checking this data?
TOM RODGERS: Checking the what?
AMY GOODMAN: Click the following article data.
TOM RODGERS: What was very evident, we looked at the political contributions that Read article was asking the tribes to make.
And I saw that they were making contributions to politicians who were in opposition to Native American ideas and concerns.
TOM RODGERS: Well, I mean, there are members in Congress, like, for one, John Doolittle.
John Doolittle — some of the tribes were making — were asked to make campaign donations to John Doolittle, who is in opposition to long-term Native American interests.
Tom DeLay, even though I know Jack and Mr.
DeLay would like to represent that Tom DeLay was there for Indian country, if you look at his legislative record, he was not.
On one or two rare isolated instances.
But you look at his overall track record, legislative record, he was not a supporter of Indian country.
And so, I looked at this, and I said, we are making contributions to people who are in opposition to us, who avidly work against Indian country.
And there was that, and there was also these invoices, these amounts, which were — and I kept saying this, and we had to convince the media, these were numbers that were like — the only organization at that time that was spending the amount of money that these tribes were spending, were being asked to spend, was the US Chamber of Commerce.
Not — even Microsoft under divestiture or GE were not spending these gross amounts of money.
There was no way — no way — you could rationalize these amounts.
This is Democracy Now!.
And it goes throughout the week.
Our guests now are — well, one of the features of this film festival, Alex Gibney has come back, the Oscar Award-winning filmmaker who did Taxi to the Dark Side and also Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.
David, before we go to you, I wanted to play yet another clip from Casino Jack.
BUSH: I, George Walker Bush, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, so help me God.
In 2001, Abramoff was asked to bring his lobbying practice to the same firm that Bush had hired to win the battle of the Florida recount, Greenberg Traurig.
The Marianas, the Mississippi Choctaw, I guess the Louisiana Coushattas.
He was making a big push for the Saginaw Chippewa.
JACK ABRAMOFF: How do I help this tribe?
Any fees you end up spending with us, you get back, you know, with a multiple.
NARRATOR: Suddenly, Jack was a popular man in Indian country.
AMY GOODMAN: An excerpt of Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Talk about Jack Abramoff and Native politics.
How was your tribe affected?
DAVID SICKEY: Well, my tribe became involved with Jack Abramoff in and around 2000, 2001.
Just to kind of give you a little bit of background, I was elected for the first term, for my first term, in May of 2003.
So the previous administrations had brought in Jack Abramoff as a consultant.
And also I think there was a tribal state gaming compact renewal issue that needed some level of sophistication, as far as negotiations were concerned.
And I believe he was referred to the tribe from another tribe, a neighboring tribe from a neighboring state.
And there were — you know, we would hear different things about lobbyists being paid, but the average member of the tribe simply had no clue as to how big these payments were.
So, Tom Rodgers, much credit to him, came in at a very appropriate time, as we were sifting through some of these documents.
I finally made contact with Tom Rodgers soon after my election.
And Tom helped out as far as, you know, giving me a sense of what to look for, providing me a grocery list of the internal documents to begin looking for and sifting through.
AMY GOODMAN: Now, Tom, you were finding that people who raised questions, within the various tribes —- TOM RODGERS: Right.
AMY GOODMAN: —- who had hired Abramoff —- TOM RODGERS: Right.
AMY GOODMAN: —- were starting to get fired.
And we want it wired to us immediately.
TOM RODGERS: Bernie Sprague was a sub-chief at the Saginaw Chippewas.
And he ended up calling me in January of 2003.
He had made previous attempts, but it was very -— the atmosphere at the Saginaw Chippewas was very threatening at that time.
Jack had told him that if he continued to raise questions regarding his invoicing and spread ill-founded rumors about him, that he might be suing him.
I was told I could trust you.
Who told you that?
And Rick Hill is a national leader in Indian country and is a very close friend of mine.
So that was my kind of password that we could trust each other, even though I had never met the man.
That was a very interesting point.
This is a reputable business.
But at that time, it was a Mail Boxes, Etc.
AMY GOODMAN: — that has the little mailboxes.
TOM RODGERS: The little mailboxes.
And that point exactly, I went in, and I — of course, looking for Suite 375, was a mailbox.
And it was eight inches across and eleven inches deep.
AMY GOODMAN: Alex Gibney, talk about the significance of this.
And David Sickey mentioned Michael Scanlon.
He got staffers of Go here Doolittle to work for him, staffers of Bob Ney to work for him.
Lobbyists sky bingo bonus withdraw relationships that staffers have with members.
AMY GOODMAN: And Neil Volz?
ALEX GIBNEY: Neil Volz was a former chief of staff for Bob Ney, and he was also — he also came to work for Jack Abramoff at Greenberg Traurig.
AMY GOODMAN: I want to play a last clip from your film, from Casino Jack, that looks at how Jack Abramoff got involved with the Tigua Tribe in Texas.
MELANIE SLOAN: Michael Scanlon sends Abramoff a piece from the El Paso Times.
MELANIE SLOAN: Which is the plan to pay Abramoff and Scanlon to reopen the casino.
David Sickey, vice chair of the Coushatta Tribe.
TOM RODGERS: Right, right.
AMY GOODMAN: Talk about this last deal, the Tigua.
Talk about — also I want to hear about the email that were going back and forth that really blew this out into the public.
TOM RODGERS: This is probably, as Alex has raised, it is one of the saddest chapters, a complete betrayal of trust amongst all the tribes.
The Tigua tribe was — and you have to look at the political conditions in Texas, are very adverse for Native Americans.
We used to have almost thirty tribes in Texas; we have three now.
And for a reason.
And what happened with the Tiguas, their economic situation was so dire that they were willing to hire somebody like Jack.
Of course, not all the necessary due diligence was done, and I understand that, but what happened was, is that they were trying to have their casino operation open up, where they could once again use their moneys to educate their youth, provide healthcare.
But what Jack and Mike did is they — kind of a bait and switch on them.
They were hired by them to help them open their casino, and then also the collateral effect of efforts to close casinos statewide had the impact of closing their casino.
And so, they got paid millions and millions of dollars.
AMY GOODMAN: And the names that they were calling Native Americans in their emails, Alex?
And this was certainly no exception.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Reed was head of the Christian Coalition.
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, what happened was, actually, Jack was hired by a tribe out of Louisiana — in fact, under a previous administration, the Coushatta Tribe — to try to shut down the casino of a tribe just outside of Houston.
And Ralph would often employ Ralph Reed, who was, in theory, you know, radically opposed to gambling.
He called it a cancer on the body politic.
How about hiring me to open you up?
TOM RODGERS: That is a disturbing thing, is, you know, in corporate America, yes, there is insurance policies called corporate-owned life insurance, but once again Jack and Mike took this to another level.
Our elders in our society are incredibly respected.
They are our — they teach us.
What these people did was beyond beyond.
They asked the Tiguas to take out life insurance policies on our elders, and once they died, then they would pay those benefits to them to pay their lobbying fees.
AMY GOODMAN: They would pay the benefits to…?
TOM RODGERS: To Jack and Mike, to pay the lobbying fees.
ALEX GIBNEY: I have to say, I mean, I think that I find this unbelievably extreme, but I should note that this is a rather common practice.
AIG used to do this all the time.
But -— AMY GOODMAN: We only have a minute.
Very quickly, the reforms that were passed in the wake of the Abramoff scandal, do they mean anything?
You know, we now have congressmen and senators who spend sometimes two, three days out of every week raising money.
Well, how perverted is that in our system?
Why should we be paying them to raise money?
And, you know, deciding how and when lobbyists can have lunch or dinner with members is really not the point.
The point is, how do you take the influence of money out of the system?
AMY GOODMAN: Well, I want to thank you all for being with us.
Alex Gibney, Oscar-winning filmmaker, his new film just premiered here at the Sundance Film Festival.
Tom Rodgers, thank you for speaking out, in his first national broadcast outside of the film that Alex has done.
And thank you very much, David Sickey, vice chair of the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana.
The original content of this program is licensed under a.
Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.
Some of the work s that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed.
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We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
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Casino Jack and the United States of Money (2010) - IMDb
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This article is about the Jack Abramoff documentary film directed by Alex Gibney.
For the drama starring Kevin Spacey, see.
This article needs an improved.
November 2015 The film focuses on the career of lobbyist, businessman, andwho was involved in a massive that led to the conviction of himself, two officials,and nine other lobbyists and watch casino jack and the united states of money staffers.
Abramoff was convicted of, and in 2006 and of trading expensive gifts, meals and sports trips in exchange for political favors.
As of December 2010 Abramoff has completed his prison sentence.
The website's critical consensus reads, " Casino Jack 's subject matter is enraging, but in the hands of director Alex Gibney, it's also well-presented and briskly entertaining.
Retrieved March 16, 2018.
By using this site, you agree to the and.
Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of thea non-profit organization.

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This portrait of Washington super lobbyist Jack Abramoff -- from his early years as a gung-ho member of the GOP political machine to his final reckoning as a disgraced, imprisoned pariah.


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Jack Abramoff: The lobbyist's playbook

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Casino Jack and the United States of Money (2010) Watch Online in Full length! Watch Casino Jack and the United States of Money Online. In Casino Jack and the United States of Money, A probing investigation into the lies, greed and corruption surrounding D.C. super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his cronies. This movie was released in the year 2010.


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Jul 08, 2013. Although Kevin Spacey did a bang up job as the fictional Casino Jack, the documentary on Abramoff is more of an achievement. Gibney has mined some wonderful interviews and uses a.


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His latest documentary is called Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
His new documentary, Casino Jack and the United States of Money, focuses on the rise and fall of disgraced Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
We also speak with David Sickey, a member https://money-jackpot-free.website/and-money/learn-to-bet-online-and-make-money.html the Tribal Council of the Coushatta Tribe, and Tom Rodgers, a lobbyist and member watch casino jack and the united states of money the Blackfeet tribe who was a key whistleblower in the Abramoff case.
His latest documentary is called Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Seven days ago, the Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling to allow corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money to elect and defeat candidates.
In a five-to-four decision, the conservative members of the court argued that corporations and unions have First Amendment rights and that the government cannot impose restrictions on their political speech.
The documentary is by the Academy Award-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney.
It focuses on the rise and fall of disgraced Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who is now serving time in jail for defrauding American Indian tribes, bribing public officials, and evading taxes.
In a moment, Alex Gibney will join us here in Park City, but first, a clip from Casino Jack.
NEWS REPORT: The government says Abramoff has admitted to bribing as many as twenty members of Congress.
ALICE FISHER: His activities went far beyond lawful lobbying.
MIKE WALLER: He was the number one lobbyist in Washington, who could get you in touch with the best and most influential members of Congress.
NEWS REPORT: When the story broke, President Bush publicly tried to distance himself from Jack Abramoff.
BOB NEY: You know, all of a sudden, nobody remembered Jack Abramoff.
BOB NEY: Of course Bush knew him.
TOM RODGERS: We had no idea that it would lead to the resignation of Tom DeLay, to the conviction of Bob Ney, to Tony Rudy, to Neil Volz.
So many people were pulled into this web: Ralph Reed, John Doolittle, Karl Rove, Dick Armey, Conrad Burns, Don Young, Grover Norquist.
It was all about the money.
AMY GOODMAN: An excerpt from Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
The filmmaker Alex Gibney joins us here in Park City.
In 2007, Alex won an Academy Award for his documentary Taxi to the Dark Side.
He also made the film Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.
David Sickey is a member of the Tribal Council of the Coushatta Tribe.
Talk about the significance of going back in time a bit to Jack Abramoff, what could look like a really interesting historical piece, and the Supreme Court decision that just came out.
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, I think the Supreme Court decision suddenly pulls these events from the past into the present with unbelievable force.
But what the Supreme Court decision does is to show just how — I mean, as much — the tools that Jack had to work with, now anybody like Jack, a lobbyist who wants to really push a political agenda, can do so with unbelievable power, just by eliciting the aid of massive amounts of corporate money.
AMY GOODMAN: Now, go back, for people who, when asked, Jack Abramoff — is it a drink?
Tell us the story in a nutshell.
ALEX GIBNEY: Jack Abramoff is a lobbyist, or was a lobbyist.
But Jack Abramoff really is better understood as a political zealot.
He was a college Republican who came to some prominence with his friends Grover Norquist and Ralph Reed, as they began to enter the political arena with a kind of a radical agenda for sort of extreme free market views and also a very sort of radical anti-Soviet agenda.
He then launched some rather — he was also a movie producer at times, doing a rather unique genre, which talk scratch and win money you to produce political action thrillers, which were actually very ideological in tone.
In one of them, called Red Scorpion, which stars the action hero Dolph Lundgren, he —- AMY GOODMAN: Which was supported by the South African apartheid regime.
ALEX GIBNEY: Which was supported by the South African apartheid regime.
The film tries to resuscitate the career of Jonas Savimbi, a rather brutal dictator.
But from there, Jack launched his career -— with the ascent of the Republicans in 1994, Jack launched his career as a lobbyist in Washington, DC.
And he had tremendous credentials among kind of the conservative community, the movement conservative community, and that allowed him access to people in power.
With access to people in power, he could sell that access to clients who wanted to buy that access.
In fact, he was in the mainstream.
He was very much a power broker in Washington, DC, very good relationships with Karl Rove, President Bush, and particularly Tom DeLay, the former Majority Whip.
He was a guy who really bought and sold politicians, is really what he did.
NARRATOR: To reach his goal, he sky bingo bonus withdraw to get to one man: Tom DeLay.
TOM DELAY: Jack Abramoff was a committed conservative.
He was well known in the conservative movement.
And I dealt with him no differently than I dealt with any other lobbyist.
NARRATOR: Jack was not like any other lobbyist.
He had a very special relationship with Tom DeLay.
He took him on trips to Russia, Scotland and the South Pacific.
Jack is one of a kind.
I mean, Jack Abramoff could sweet talk a dog off a meat truck.
This is the guy.
One of a kind.
One of a kind.
AMY GOODMAN: That, a clip from Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Alex, go on from there and talk about Tom DeLay.
Interestingly, at your premier here at the Sundance Film Festival, one of those who were in the audience was Bob Ney, who went to jail, the congressman.
ALEX GIBNEY: Congressman Bob Ney spent seventeen years in a federal — seventeen months, I should say, in a federal penitentiary.
I mean, when we screened the film here, Bob had never seen it before.
And I was unsure a little bit how he was going to react.
And Bob came out of the audience to talk to people afterwards, and a lot of people were very interested, because Bob is very candid about how this influence-peddling process works.
AMY GOODMAN: And Tom DeLay?
ALEX GIBNEY: Tom DeLay would not be like — that would not be his view.
His view would be, let the money rush down like great waters.
AMY GOODMAN: So his wish was answered by the Supreme Court.
I think the Supreme Court was channeling Tom DeLay when they issued their recent decision.
AMY GOODMAN: But Tom DeLay is out of office now.
How does it tie into this?
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, Tom DeLay is out of office now, but I think the point is that —- AMY GOODMAN: Forced to resign.
ALEX GIBNEY: He was forced to resign as a result of this scandal.
But before we do, I wanted to introduce our next guest, who has -— well, just beginning to speak out, really the first time in your film, Alex.
And my family is Native American.
And I came back to work in DC, and in working with tribes, and some tribal leaders who had trusted me throughout my career reached out to me a time in early 2002 because of threats that had been made to them regarding the lobbying practices of a lobbyist who was representing them.
And I received a number of phone calls and was asked to meet with a number of tribal leaders, because they felt that their lobbyist was defrauding them and cheating them, and they had no idea what they were paying for with these large, large amounts of money.
Bernie -— AMY GOODMAN: How did you go about checking this data?
TOM RODGERS: Checking the what?
AMY GOODMAN: The data.
TOM RODGERS: What was very evident, we looked at the political contributions that Jack was asking the tribes to make.
And I saw that they were making contributions to politicians who were in opposition to Native American ideas and concerns.
TOM RODGERS: Well, I mean, there are members in Congress, like, for one, John Doolittle.
John Doolittle — some of the tribes were making — were asked to make campaign donations to John Doolittle, who is in opposition to long-term Native American interests.
Tom DeLay, even though I apologise, aries and money 2019 confirm Jack and Mr.
DeLay would like to represent that Tom DeLay was there for Indian country, if you look at his legislative record, he was not.
On one or two rare isolated instances.
But you look at his overall track record, legislative record, he was not a supporter of Indian country.
And so, I looked at this, and I said, we are making contributions to people who are in opposition to us, who avidly work against Indian country.
And there was that, and there was also these invoices, these amounts, which were — and I kept saying this, and we had to convince the media, these were numbers that were like — the only organization at that time that was spending the amount of money that these tribes were spending, were being asked to spend, was the US Chamber of Commerce.
Not — even Microsoft under divestiture or GE were not spending these gross amounts of money.
There was no way — no way — you could rationalize these amounts.
This is Democracy Now!.
And it goes throughout the week.
Our guests now are — well, one of the features of this film festival, Alex Gibney has come back, the Oscar Award-winning filmmaker who did Taxi to the Dark Side and also Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.
David, before we go to you, I wanted to play yet another clip from Casino Jack.
BUSH: I, George Walker Bush, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, so help me God.
In 2001, Abramoff was asked to bring his lobbying practice to the same firm that Bush had hired to win the battle of the Florida recount, Greenberg Traurig.
RON PLATT: He clearly had a big practice, five or six million dollars.
The Marianas, the Mississippi Choctaw, I guess the Louisiana Coushattas.
He was making a big push for the Saginaw Chippewa.
JACK ABRAMOFF: How do I help this tribe?
Any fees you end up spending with us, you get back, you know, with a multiple.
NARRATOR: Suddenly, Jack was a popular man in Indian country.
AMY GOODMAN: An excerpt of Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Talk about Jack Abramoff and Native politics.
How was your tribe affected?
DAVID SICKEY: Well, my tribe became involved with Jack Abramoff in and around 2000, 2001.
Just to kind of give you a little bit of background, I was elected for the first term, for my first term, in May of 2003.
So the previous administrations had brought in Jack Abramoff as a consultant.
And also I think there was a tribal state gaming compact renewal issue that needed some level of sophistication, as far as negotiations were concerned.
And I believe he was referred to the tribe from another tribe, a neighboring tribe from a neighboring state.
And there were — you know, we would hear different things about lobbyists being paid, but the average member of the tribe simply had no clue as to how big these payments were.
So, Tom Rodgers, much credit to watch casino jack and the united states of money, came in at a very appropriate time, as we were sifting through some of these documents.
I finally made contact with Tom Rodgers soon after my election.
And Tom helped out as far as, you know, giving me a sense of what to look for, providing me a grocery list of the internal documents to begin looking for and sifting through.
AMY GOODMAN: Now, Tom, you were finding that people who raised questions, within the various tribes —- TOM RODGERS: Right.
AMY GOODMAN: —- who had hired Abramoff —- TOM RODGERS: Right.
AMY GOODMAN: —- were starting to get fired.
And we want it wired to us immediately.
TOM RODGERS: Bernie Sprague was a sub-chief at the Saginaw Chippewas.
And he ended up calling me in January of 2003.
He had made previous attempts, but it was very -— the atmosphere at the Saginaw Chippewas was very threatening at that time.
Jack had told him that if he continued to raise questions regarding his invoicing and spread ill-founded rumors about him, that he might be suing him.
I was told I could trust you.
Who told you that?
And Rick Hill is a national leader in Indian country and is a very close friend of mine.
So that was my kind of password that we could trust each other, even though I had never met the man.
That was a very interesting point.
This is a reputable business.
But at that time, it was a Mail Boxes, Etc.
AMY GOODMAN: — that has the little mailboxes.
TOM RODGERS: The little mailboxes.
And that point exactly, I went in, and I — of course, looking for Suite 375, was a mailbox.
And it was eight inches across and eleven inches deep.
AMY GOODMAN: Alex Gibney, talk about the significance of this.
And David Sickey mentioned Michael Scanlon.
article source got staffers of John Doolittle to work for him, staffers of Bob Ney to work for him.
Lobbyists use relationships that staffers have with members.
AMY GOODMAN: And Neil Volz?
ALEX GIBNEY: Neil Volz was a former chief of staff for Bob Ney, and he was also — he also came to work for Jack Abramoff at Greenberg Traurig.
AMY GOODMAN: I want to play a last clip from your film, from Casino Jack, that looks at how Jack Abramoff got involved with the Tigua Tribe in Texas.
MELANIE SLOAN: Michael Scanlon sends Abramoff a piece from the El Paso Times.
MELANIE SLOAN: Which is the plan to pay Abramoff and Scanlon to reopen the casino.
David Sickey, vice chair of the Coushatta Tribe.
TOM RODGERS: Right, right.
AMY GOODMAN: Talk about this last deal, the Tigua.
Talk about — also I want to hear about the email that were going back and forth that really blew this out into the public.
TOM RODGERS: This is probably, as Alex has raised, it is one of the saddest chapters, a complete betrayal of trust amongst all the tribes.
The Tigua tribe was — and you have to look at the political conditions in Texas, are very adverse for Native Americans.
We used to have almost thirty tribes in Texas; we have three now.
And for a reason.
And what watch casino jack and the united states of money with the Tiguas, their economic situation was so dire that they were willing to hire somebody like Jack.
Of course, not all the necessary due diligence was done, and I understand that, but what happened was, is that they were watch casino jack and the united states of money to have their casino operation open up, where they could once again use their moneys to educate their youth, provide healthcare.
But what Jack and Mike did is they — kind of a play cricket games and win money and switch on them.
They were hired by them to help them open their casino, and then also the collateral effect of efforts to close casinos statewide had the impact of closing their casino.
And so, they got paid millions and millions of dollars.
AMY GOODMAN: And the names that they were calling Native Americans in their emails, Alex?
And this was certainly no exception.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Reed was head of the Christian Coalition.
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, what happened was, actually, Jack was hired by a tribe out of Louisiana — in fact, under a previous administration, the Coushatta Tribe — to try to shut down the casino of a tribe just outside of Houston.
And Ralph would often employ Ralph Reed, who was, in theory, you know, radically opposed to gambling.
He called it a cancer on the body politic.
How about hiring me to open you up?
TOM RODGERS: That is a disturbing thing, is, you know, in corporate America, yes, there is insurance policies called corporate-owned life insurance, but once again Jack and Mike took this to another level.
Our elders in our society are incredibly respected.
They are our — they teach us.
What these people did was beyond beyond.
They asked the Tiguas to take out life insurance policies on our elders, and once they died, then they would pay those benefits to them to pay their lobbying fees.
AMY GOODMAN: They would pay the benefits to…?
TOM RODGERS: To Jack and Mike, to pay the lobbying fees.
ALEX GIBNEY: I have to say, I mean, I think that I find this unbelievably extreme, but I should note that this is a rather common practice.
AIG used to do this all the time.
But -— AMY GOODMAN: We only have a minute.
Very quickly, the reforms that were passed in the wake of the Abramoff scandal, do they mean anything?
You know, we now have congressmen and senators who spend sometimes two, three days out of every week raising money.
Well, how perverted is that in our system?
Why should we be paying them to raise money?
And, a and win money know, deciding how and when lobbyists can have lunch or dinner with members is really not the point.
The point is, how do you take the influence of money more info of the system?
AMY GOODMAN: Well, I want to thank you all for being with us.
Alex Gibney, Oscar-winning filmmaker, his new film just premiered here at the Sundance Film Festival.
Tom Rodgers, thank you for speaking out, in his first national broadcast outside of the film that Alex has done.
And thank you very much, David Sickey, vice chair of the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana.
The original content of this program is licensed under a.
Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.
Some of the work s that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed.
For further information or additional permissions, contact us.
We do not accept funding from advertising, underwriting or government agencies.
We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
We do not accept funding from advertising, underwriting or government agencies.
We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.

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Casino Jack And The United States Of Money Documentary Economics - YouTube
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His latest documentary is called Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
His new documentary, Casino Jack and the United States of Money, focuses on the rise and fall of disgraced Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff.
We also speak with David Sickey, a that guide to play slot machines and win money apologise of the Tribal Council of the Coushatta Tribe, and Tom Rodgers, a lobbyist and member of the Blackfeet tribe who was a key whistleblower in the Abramoff case.
His latest documentary is called Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Seven days ago, the Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling to allow corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money to elect and defeat candidates.
In a five-to-four decision, the conservative members of the court argued that corporations and unions have First Amendment rights and that the government cannot impose restrictions on their political speech.
The documentary is by the Academy Award-winning filmmaker Alex Gibney.
It focuses on the rise and fall of disgraced Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who is now serving time in jail for defrauding American Indian tribes, bribing public officials, and evading taxes.
In a moment, Alex Gibney will join us here in Park City, but first, a clip from Casino Jack.
NEWS REPORT: The government says Abramoff has admitted to bribing as many as twenty members of Congress.
ALICE FISHER: His activities went far beyond lawful lobbying.
MIKE WALLER: He was the number one lobbyist in Washington, who could get you in touch with the best and most influential members of Congress.
NEWS REPORT: When the story broke, President Bush publicly tried to distance himself from Jack Abramoff.
BOB NEY: You know, all of a sudden, nobody remembered Jack Abramoff.
BOB NEY: Of course Bush knew him.
TOM RODGERS: We had no idea that it would lead to the resignation of Tom DeLay, to the conviction of Bob Ney, to Tony Rudy, to Neil Volz.
So many people were pulled into this web: Ralph Reed, John Doolittle, Karl Rove, Dick Armey, Conrad Burns, Don Young, Grover Norquist.
It was all about the money.
AMY GOODMAN: An excerpt from Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
The filmmaker Alex Gibney joins us here in Park City.
In 2007, Alex won an Academy Award for his documentary Taxi to the Dark Side.
He also made the film Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.
David Sickey is a member of the Tribal Council of the Coushatta Tribe.
Talk about the significance of going back in time a bit to Jack Abramoff, what could look like a really interesting historical piece, and the Supreme Court decision that just came out.
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, I think the Supreme Court decision suddenly pulls these events from the past into the present with unbelievable force.
But what the Supreme Court decision does is to show just how — I mean, as much — the tools that Jack had to work with, now anybody like Jack, a lobbyist who wants to really push a political agenda, can do so with unbelievable power, just by eliciting the aid of massive amounts of corporate money.
AMY GOODMAN: Now, go back, for people who, when asked, Jack Abramoff — is it a drink?
Tell us the story in a nutshell.
ALEX GIBNEY: Jack Abramoff is a lobbyist, or was a lobbyist.
But Jack Abramoff really is better understood as a political excellent money laundering and terrorist financing (online gambling) code 2019 consider />He was a college Republican who came to some prominence with his friends Grover Norquist and Ralph Reed, as they began to enter the political arena with a kind of a radical agenda for sort of extreme free market views and also a very sort of radical anti-Soviet agenda.
He then launched some rather — he was also a movie producer at times, doing a rather unique genre, which was to produce political action thrillers, which were actually very ideological in tone.
In one of them, called Red Scorpion, which stars the action hero Dolph Lundgren, he —- AMY GOODMAN: Which was supported by the South African apartheid regime.
ALEX GIBNEY: Which was supported by the South African apartheid regime.
The film tries to resuscitate the career of Jonas Savimbi, a rather brutal dictator.
But from there, Jack launched his career -— with the ascent of the Republicans in 1994, Jack launched his career as a lobbyist in Washington, DC.
And he had tremendous credentials among kind of the conservative community, the movement conservative community, and that allowed him access to people in power.
With access to people in power, he could sell that access to clients who and money to buy that access.
In fact, he was in the mainstream.
He was very much a power broker in Washington, DC, very good relationships with Karl Rove, President Bush, and particularly Tom DeLay, the former Majority Whip.
He was a guy who really bought and sold politicians, is really what he did.
NARRATOR: To reach his goal, he had to get to one man: Tom DeLay.
TOM DELAY: Jack Abramoff was a committed conservative.
He was well known in the conservative movement.
And I dealt with him no differently than I dealt with any other lobbyist.
NARRATOR: Jack was not like any other lobbyist.
He had a very special relationship with Tom DeLay.
He took him on trips to Russia, Scotland and the South Pacific.
Jack is one of a kind.
I mean, Jack Abramoff could sweet talk a dog off a meat truck.
This sky bingo bonus withdraw the guy.
One of a kind.
One of a kind.
AMY GOODMAN: That, a clip from Casino Jack and the United States of Money.
Alex, go on from there and talk about Tom DeLay.
Interestingly, at your premier here at the Sundance Film Festival, one of those who were in the audience was Bob Ney, who went to jail, the congressman.
ALEX GIBNEY: Congressman Bob Ney spent seventeen years in a federal — seventeen months, I should say, in a federal penitentiary.
I mean, when we screened the film here, Bob had never seen it before.
And I was unsure a little bit how he was going to react.
And Bob came out of the audience to talk to people afterwards, and a lot of people were very interested, because Bob is very candid about how this influence-peddling process works.
AMY GOODMAN: And Tom DeLay?
ALEX GIBNEY: Tom DeLay would not be like — that would not be his view.
His view would be, let the money rush down like great waters.
AMY GOODMAN: So his wish was answered by the Supreme Court.
I think the Supreme Court was channeling Tom DeLay when they issued their recent decision.
AMY GOODMAN: But Tom DeLay is out of office now.
How does it tie into this?
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, Tom DeLay is out of office now, but I think the point is that —- AMY GOODMAN: Forced to resign.
ALEX Watch casino jack and the united states of money He was forced to resign as a result of this scandal.
But before we do, I wanted to introduce our next guest, who has -— well, just beginning to speak out, really the first time in your film, Alex.
And my family is Native American.
And I came back to work in DC, and in working with tribes, and some tribal leaders who had trusted me throughout my career reached out to me a time in early 2002 because of threats that had been made to them regarding the lobbying practices of a lobbyist who was representing them.
And I received a number of phone calls and was asked to meet with a number of tribal leaders, because they felt that their lobbyist was defrauding sky bingo bonus withdraw and cheating them, and they had no idea what they were paying for with these large, large amounts of money.
Bernie -— AMY GOODMAN: How did you go about checking this data?
TOM RODGERS: Checking the what?
AMY GOODMAN: The data.
TOM RODGERS: What was very evident, we looked at the political contributions that Jack was asking the tribes to make.
And I saw that they were making contributions to politicians who were in opposition to Native American ideas and concerns.
TOM RODGERS: Well, I mean, there are members in Congress, like, for one, John Doolittle.
John Doolittle — some of the tribes were making — were asked to make campaign donations to John Doolittle, who is in opposition to long-term Native American interests.
Tom DeLay, even though I know Jack and Mr.
DeLay would like to represent that Tom DeLay was there for Indian country, if you look at his legislative record, he was not.
On one or two rare isolated instances.
But you look at his overall track record, legislative record, he was not a supporter of Indian country.
And so, I looked at this, and I said, we are making contributions to people who are in opposition to us, who avidly work against Indian country.
And there was that, and there was also these invoices, these amounts, which were — and I kept saying this, and we had to convince the media, these were numbers that were like — the only organization at that time that was spending the amount of money that these tribes were spending, were being asked to spend, was the US Chamber of Commerce.
Not — even Microsoft under divestiture or GE were not spending these gross amounts of money.
There was no way — no way — you could rationalize these amounts.
This is Democracy Now!.
And it goes throughout the week.
Our guests now are — well, one of the features of this film festival, Alex Gibney has come back, the Oscar Award-winning filmmaker who did Taxi to the Dark Side and also Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.
David, before we go to you, I wanted to play yet another clip from Casino Jack.
BUSH: I, George Walker Bush, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, so help me God.
In 2001, Abramoff was asked to bring his lobbying practice to the same firm that Bush had hired to win the battle of the Florida recount, Greenberg Traurig.
RON PLATT: He clearly had a big practice, five or six million dollars.
The Marianas, the Mississippi Choctaw, I guess the Louisiana Coushattas.
He was making a big push for the Saginaw Chippewa.
JACK ABRAMOFF: How do I help this tribe?
Any fees you end up spending with us, you get back, you know, with a multiple.
NARRATOR: Suddenly, Jack was a popular man in Indian country.
AMY GOODMAN: An excerpt of Casino Jack and the United Watch casino jack and the united states of money of Money.
Talk about Jack Abramoff and Native politics.
How was your tribe affected?
DAVID SICKEY: Well, my tribe became involved with Jack Abramoff in and around 2000, 2001.
Just to kind of give you a little bit of background, I was elected for the first term, for my first term, in May of 2003.
So the previous administrations had brought in Jack Abramoff as a consultant.
And also I think there was a tribal state gaming compact renewal issue that needed some level of sophistication, as far as negotiations were concerned.
And I believe he was referred to the tribe from another tribe, a neighboring tribe from a neighboring state.
And there were — you know, we would hear different things about lobbyists being paid, but the average check this out of the tribe simply had no clue as to how big these payments were.
So, Tom Rodgers, much credit to him, came in at a very appropriate time, as we were sifting through some of these documents.
I finally made contact with Tom Rodgers soon after my election.
And Tom helped out as far as, you know, giving me a sense of what to look for, providing me a grocery list of the internal documents to begin looking for and sifting through.
AMY GOODMAN: Now, Tom, you were finding that people who raised questions, within the various tribes —- TOM RODGERS: Right.
AMY GOODMAN: —- who had hired Abramoff —- TOM RODGERS: Right.
AMY GOODMAN: —- were starting to get fired.
And we want it wired to us immediately.
TOM RODGERS: Bernie Sprague was a sub-chief at the Saginaw Chippewas.
And he ended up calling me in January of sky bingo bonus withdraw />He had made previous attempts, but it was very -— the atmosphere at the Saginaw Chippewas was very threatening at that time.
Jack had told him that if he continued to raise questions regarding his invoicing and spread ill-founded rumors about him, that he might be suing him.
I was told I could trust you.
Who told you that?
And Rick Hill is a national leader in Indian country and is a very close friend of mine.
So that was my kind of password that we could trust each other, even though I had never met the man.
That was a very interesting point.
This is a reputable business.
But at that time, it was a Mail Boxes, Etc.
AMY GOODMAN: — that has the little mailboxes.
TOM RODGERS: The little mailboxes.
And that point exactly, I went in, and I — of course, looking for Suite 375, was a mailbox.
And watch casino jack and the united states of money was eight inches across and eleven inches deep.
AMY GOODMAN: Alex Gibney, talk about the significance of this.
And David Sickey mentioned Michael Scanlon.
He got staffers of John Doolittle to work for him, staffers of Bob Ney to work for him.
Lobbyists use relationships that staffers have with members.
AMY GOODMAN: And Neil Volz?
ALEX GIBNEY: Neil Volz was a former chief of staff for Bob Ney, and he was also — he also came to work for Jack Abramoff at Greenberg Traurig.
AMY GOODMAN: I want to play a last clip from your film, from Casino Jack, that looks at how Jack Abramoff got involved with the Tigua Tribe in Texas.
MELANIE SLOAN: Michael Scanlon sends Abramoff a piece from the El Paso Times.
MELANIE SLOAN: Which is the plan to pay Abramoff and Scanlon to reopen the read article />David Sickey, vice chair of the Coushatta Tribe.
TOM RODGERS: Right, right.
AMY GOODMAN: Talk about this last deal, the Tigua.
Talk about — also I want to hear about the email that were going back and forth that really blew this out into the public.
TOM RODGERS: This is probably, as Alex has raised, it is one of the saddest chapters, a complete betrayal of trust amongst all the tribes.
The Tigua tribe was — and you have to look at the political conditions in Texas, are very adverse for Native Americans.
We used to have almost thirty tribes in Texas; we have three now.
And for a reason.
And what happened with the Tiguas, their economic situation was so dire that they were willing to hire somebody like Jack.
Of course, not all the necessary due diligence was done, and I understand that, but what happened was, is that they were trying to have their casino operation open up, where they could once again use their moneys to educate their youth, provide healthcare.
But what Jack and Mike did is they — kind of a bait and switch on them.
They were hired by them to help them open their casino, and then also the collateral effect of efforts to close casinos statewide had the impact of closing their casino.
And so, they got paid millions and millions of dollars.
AMY GOODMAN: And the names that they were calling Native Americans in their emails, Alex?
And this was certainly no exception.
AMY GOODMAN: Ralph Reed was head of the Christian Coalition.
ALEX GIBNEY: Well, what happened was, actually, Jack was hired by a tribe out of Louisiana — in fact, under a previous administration, the Coushatta Tribe — to try to shut down the casino of a tribe just outside of Houston.
And Ralph would often employ Ralph Reed, who was, in theory, you know, radically opposed to gambling.
He called it a cancer on the body politic.
How about hiring me to open you up?
TOM RODGERS: That is a disturbing thing, is, you know, in corporate America, yes, there is insurance policies called corporate-owned life insurance, but once again Jack and Mike took this to another level.
Our elders in our society are incredibly respected.
They are our — they teach us.
What these people did was beyond beyond.
They asked the Tiguas to take out life insurance policies on our elders, and once they died, then they would pay those benefits to them to pay their lobbying fees.
AMY GOODMAN: They would pay the benefits to…?
TOM RODGERS: To Jack and Mike, to pay the lobbying fees.
ALEX GIBNEY: I have to say, I mean, I think that I find this unbelievably extreme, but I should note that this is a rather common practice.
AIG used to do this all the time.
But -— AMY GOODMAN: We only have a minute.
Very quickly, the reforms that were passed in the wake of the Abramoff scandal, do they mean anything?
You know, we now have congressmen and senators who spend sometimes two, three days out of every week raising money.
Well, how perverted is that in our system?
Why should we be paying them to raise money?
And, you know, deciding how and when lobbyists can have lunch or dinner with members is really not the point.
The point is, how do you take the influence of money out of the system?
AMY GOODMAN: Well, I want to thank you all for being with us.
Alex Gibney, Oscar-winning filmmaker, his new film just premiered here at the Sundance Film Festival.
Tom Rodgers, thank you for speaking out, in his first national broadcast outside of the film that Alex has done.
And thank you very sky bingo bonus withdraw, David Sickey, vice chair of the Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana.
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Directed by Alex Gibney. With Jack Abramoff, Tom DeLay, William Branner, Melanie Sloan. A probing investigation into the lies, greed and corruption surrounding D.C. super-lobbyist Jack Abramoff and his cronies.


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