I’m looking for a snitch, who wants to get rich.
Blogging is one of those impossible to make a profit from activities you have to fit into all the necessities of life, such as looking after your family, making a living, paying your bills, hacking back that out of control Amazonian jungle you call a garden, repairing a leaky roof at some considerable personal risk to yourself and the zillion other things that make up the details of life.
I’d like to do a lot more of it, but the aforementioned constraints mean the most time I can give it, is Sunday afternoons, barricaded in my study with the barbarians hammering on the door, the result being one piece a week. Some bloggers have a donations button, and no doubt they get a few bucks through that, but it’s hardly what I’d call a steady income.
There’s always that gap between the situation you’re in and where you’d like to be, and that’s the sort of problem I like to gnaw on. Where I’d like to be, is blogging several times a week, which implies less time having to make a living, which in turn implies I’ve got to acquire a serious stack of money. I’m a proactive type, which probably goes some way to explaining the character of this blog, and I like to initiate moves, rather than waiting around for things to change.
I think I might have come up with a method of moving into that different situation.
In the last decade, it’s been estimated that 98 billion USD has been spent, that’s 98 with nine fat zeroes after it or more impressively $98,000,000,000 in the United States alone, on research, grants, subsidies and loans to deal with the non-existent threat of global warming. Obviously, where there’s that amount of money sloshing around, a lot of theft is occurring. If you don’t think that, it’s fine with me, and you need read no further, though I’ll think you’re a bit of an idealist who’s led a very sheltered or at least, unobservant life.
However, if you do happen to think that the odd few million out of all those billions, might just have ended up in some white-collar criminal’s pocket, read on, especially if you’re knowledgeable about an instance of it. Information is power, but if you can convert it into money, it buys lots of lovely things. Really lovely things.
Most countries have laws in place to protect whistleblowers, and the sensible ones have a financial reward arrangement, when the funds in question are government money. You basically get a percentage of the money involved, the government claws some of it back and the criminals get a jail sentence.
The deal is quite simple; tell me what you’ve got, I’ll look at whether you’ve got a live one and, if I think it is, proceed with getting you your money. I’ll act as your agent, charging 20%, out of your end of whatever reward you eventually get, if any. Any expenses incurred by both of us, will come out of the reward money before we share it out. My percentage is not negotiable and we’d be signing a binding contract for services to that effect. Let me run through what my 20% gets you.
First off, you get a hard negotiator with a skill set that’s very appropriate for this type of work. Most importantly, I’m your cutout. I’ll do the initial contact and subsequent negotiation with the relevant authorities, without revealing my source. I know my way around financial crime and what buttons to press to make bureaucracies work. I’ll do the fan dance with them, showing them glimpses of the proof, and if they should act in bad faith, they’ll have nothing to go on except me, and I know not only how to take the heat, but how to protect you and myself as well. After all, it’s my skin as well as yours if it all turns nasty, hence the hefty commission. Show biz agents don’t ordinarily get threatened with prison sentences, which I know will probably happen at some point in the horse trading.
If you weren’t directly involved in the fraud, it makes things very simple. If you went along with it passively, for reasons of duress or whatever, I’ll negotiate a free pass for you with the authorities or walk away from the deal. Every well designed fraud has an unwitting patsy lined up to take the fall, should it all unravel. It’s their signature that’ll be on all the incriminating documents.
If you’ve just realised that’s your role in the thing, get in touch, if only to discuss your survival options. No charge for that one. If you were a willing participant, that’ll be a bit more difficult, but certainly not impossible. Again, you’ve got a cutout, so if the best I can get out of them is some vague talk about a reduced sentence, you can walk away with your anonymity intact.
They only get your name if two conditions are satisfied; I’m sure it’s safe and you give me permission to do that.
I’ll sort out good legal representation for you in your country, wherever in the world that is. You’ll need that extra layer of legal protection, if only to stop them pressuring the details out of you without coughing up the reward. He’ll speak for you with them, under strict rules of client confidentiality. I’ll find a suitably hungry Rottweiler, who’ll be on a kill or cure deal, with a contractually agreed fixed sum or a percentage of the take. I’ll run him.
Right, time to talk about what I need from you.
First off, given that I’m on 20% of 10% of whatever money is involved, I’m setting the bar at 5 million USD, as the minimum amount of the swindle, from the government or whoever. I might go for a smaller amount, but I’d be adjusting my commission accordingly to make it worth my time. Not all countries have a legally defined reward, but that’s just a negotiating detail that I’ll sort out. We’re snitching for money and I’m not about to take the chance of putting myself in harm’s way for nickels or dimes. If I’m going to possibly take the pain of acting as your firewall, I’m not interested in the odd 10,000 USD, that black-holed on someone’s dirty weekend in Atlantic City.
Assuming you’ll get the usual 10% of that minimum, that puts you on half a million smackeroos, but after my 20%, you’re on 400,000 USD. Just think what you could do with a juicy lump sum like that. The bigger the scam, the more we both make.
If the people behind the scam are organised crime, I’m not interested, since they’ll have long ago bought what they needed by way of protection from law enforcement and the judiciary. For them, that’s just the usual accepted overhead of doing business. That variety of big money has big influence and a long memory. I’m too comfortable living where I am, and the prospect of having to disappear into a witness protection program with me and mine, simply doesn’t appeal.
I’ll need solid proof of wrongdoing, not just rumours around the water cooler. I’m talking documentation, falsified grant applications, renewal applications, phony progress reports, witness statements, deliberately doctored results, first hand stuff – the whole ten yards. If what you’ve got is good, but not good enough for a court, I’ll be asking you to take the risk of obtaining better proof. It’s not what you know that matters; it’s what you can prove.
I’m not interested in vague prospects but absolutely confirmed kills. I’ll be checking out not only the proof, but you too, and believe me, I know how to do both of those things.
At some point, when I absolutely know it’s safe, I’ll need you to make legal depositions in your own name of what you actually know or have seen. Ratting out whoever it is you’re going to be ratting out, could have a big impact on your life, never mind your career. Think about it carefully. If you’re not prepared to do that, don’t bother getting in touch.
If you can meet all the above requirements, we can start a conversation. There’s no need to feel you should be embarrassed, it’s just a perfectly legitimate business deal we’re putting together. I’m not the judgemental type and quite honestly, I’d prefer if you’re doing it just for the money, although I’m sure even then that there’ll probably be an element of payback involved, but I have to say, I trust a money motivation more. As Gordon Gekko famously said, greed is good, but more importantly, one can always rely on it, hence the binding contracts.
We’re in exactly the same boat. I’ll be making some money and at the same time, have the satisfaction of putting a Mk. 48 torpedo into the good ship global warming. Like every good business deal, everyone walks away from the table with more money in their pocket. You, me, the Rottweiler and the government. It’s a no-brainer win-win for us all, as long as everyone behaves themselves, which I’ll be making sure is happening.
You initially get in touch with me, by simply adding a comment to this article. All comments by a new contributor are visible to only me. Use a freshly minted email, from any of the free services, except gmail, because it scans the content of all emails in order to target advertising. If you pass the initial inspection here, and there will be one, I’ll establish a more secure line of communications between us.
If you ever once go outside that secure line, I’ll know I can’t protect you from yourself and hence you’re a risk to me, so I’ll walk away.
There’s a saying in fishing circles; the man with his line in the water the most, tends to catch the most fish, or expressed more simply, if you fish long enough, you’ll eventually get a bite. Obviously, an open offer like this is going to attract a fair share of time wasters and perhaps some agents of disinformation, whom I’ll enjoy playing some games with, before perhaps dumping them and their carefully falsified proof at the mercy of the authorities. I’ll leave God to sort that one out and I’ll share the resulting fun as a blog or two, but having said all that, I might just land a big fish or two. It’s a long shot, but it’s an idea and for the modest outlay of a few hours writing, it could potentially turn out to be very profitable. Time will tell.
Come to me with something decent. Betray them, flip on them, drop the dime, grass them up, blow the whistle, turn state’s, sell them out or whatever; you’ll be well rewarded.
You never know. As Monsieur Rick said to Louie, I think this could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Let’s make some serious money together.
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