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"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." - John 8:32
WEBCommentary Contributor
Author:  Michael J. Gaynor
Bio: Michael J. Gaynor
Date:  May 6, 2009
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Topic category:  Government/Politics

Administration Threat to Destroy Firm's Reputation Reminiscent of Times Spiking Pre-election ACORN-Obama Expose

But for Ms. Strom yielding to her editors and "standing down," the current administration might be McCain-Palin instead of Obama-Biden and Ms. Strom might be a Pulitzer Prize recipient for exposing ACORN and its problematic connections to Obama and his presidential campaign.

As expected, the Administration that denied that President Obama bowed to the Saudi king is denying that anything untoward happened as Steven Rattner tried to reorganize Chrysler Corporation and the alphabet networks are dutifully reporting the denial.

From the Political Punch Blog at

"White House Denies Charge By Attorney that Administration Threatened to Destroy Investment Firm's Reputation

"May 02, 2009 3:17 PM [Note: post updated]

"A leading bankruptcy attorney representing hedge funds and money managers told ABC News Saturday that Steve Rattner, the leader of the Obama administration's Auto Industry Task Force, threatened one of the firms, an investment bank, that if it continued to oppose the administration's Chrysler bankruptcy plan, the White House would use the White House press corps to destroy its reputation.

"The White House and a spokesperson for the investment bank in question challenged the accuracy of the story.

"'The charge is completely untrue,' said White House deputy press secretary Bill Burton, 'and there's obviously no evidence to suggest that this happened in any way.'

"Thomas Lauria, Global Practice Head of the Financial Restructuring and Insolvency Group at White & Case, told ABC News that Rattner suggested to an official of the boutique investment bank Perella Weinberg Partners that officials of the Obama White House would embarrass the firm for opposing the Obama administration plan, which President Obama announced Thursday, and which requires creditors to accept roughly 29 cents on the dollar for an estimated $6.8 billion owed by Chrysler."

No one has offered a plausible reason why Mr. Lauria would have risked disbarment by lying about this.

For those wondering what (and whom) to believe, herewith excerpts from the email between New York Times national correspondent Stephanie Strom and former Strom confidential source Anita MonCrief relating to the spiked story.

But for Ms. Strom yielding to her editors and "standing down," the current administration might be McCain-Palin instead of Obama-Biden and Ms. Strom might be a Pulitzer Prize recipient for exposing ACORN and its problematic connections to Obama and his presidential campaign.

But for a voicemail played on "The O'Reilly Factor," Ms. Strom might be denying that she was told to "stand down."

As Ms. MonCrief told me (and Heather Heidelbaugh, Esq.) on October 21, 2008, Ms. Strom stood down because her editors feared that Ms. Strom was preparing "a game changer."

Obviously The New York Times was backing Obama big time.

Email from Strom to MonCrief dated September 30, 2008, 2:26 PM:

"Hi, there. Thanks again for all you're doing for me. I'm sorry to be such a pest, but people just don't shoot straight these days.

"Please mail the file to me c/o my employer at 620 Eighth Avenue, New York, NY 10018. If you want, use our Fedex no. [number redacted].

"Again, 1,000 thanks."

Email from Strom to MonCrief dated September 30, 2008, 2:41 PM:

"Did you say you also have a donor file from the Clinton campaign? If so, can you forward?

"The DNC lists you sent are good because they have a column marked DNC."

Email from Strom to MonCrief dated October 6, 2008, 3:24 PM:

"I'm so sorry if any of my work is causing you problems. I've tried to be very careful.

"I'm calling halt to my efforts. I just had two unpleasant calls with the Obama campaign, wherein the spokesman was screaming and yelling and cursing me, calling me a rightwing nut and a conspiracy theorist and everything else. Without something that clearly links the campaign to the organization, I'm spinning my wheels. Sorry.

"I'd still like to get that file from you when you have a chance to send it. One of these days, the truth is going to come out."

Email from MonCrief to Strom dated October 6, 2008, 11:58 PM:

"I will call you when I send it. I hate that you are taking a break but I do understand. I am at that point where all I can do is keep fighting. I really do not have a choice at this point. They are going to keep coming and I have been kind of depressed lately, but they have made me snap back into and I refuse to let this go. I will find some way or proof.

"'When through the old oak forest I am gone, Let me not wander in a barren dream. But, when I am consumed in the fine, give me new phoenix wings to fly at my desire.' John Keats."

Email from Strom to MonCrief dated October 7, 2008, 7:56 AM

"I'm going to have a discussion today with a pal of mine at the paper. What's happening is that the campaign has answered some of my questions on the record--but when I sought on-the-record answers to my questions about the meeting and about the list, the campaign insisted on speaking only on background. When I asked why, I got the barrage I described earlier. Clearly, I've hit a nerve with what you've told me. The campaign knows that having the allegations of meeting attributed to 'former employees'--and there are more than one of you talking--and having an anonymous denial of the meeting makes it harder for me to get it into the paper.

"The emails you've sent help nail the dates when these things were coming in. Thank you, thank you."

From Strom to MonCrief dated October 9, 2008, 12:42 PM:

"Thanks for forwarding.

"Question: Can I mention the comments Zach made at the retreat in Petit Jean? Can you tell me anything more about that event?

From MonCrief to Strom dated October 9, 2008, 2:30 PM:

"yes you can. It was Nov 14th 2007 and that was before the Obama call."

From Strom to MonCrief dated October 9, 2008, 7:44 PM:

"Who attended and how many roughly? Was it in a particular facility there?"

From MonCrief to Strom dated October 9, 2008, 8:51 PM:

"It was in the dining hall at the Mathis Lodge. It had been partitioned off to allow for a private meeting space in the back. It was during the first session."

From Strom to MonCrief dated October 9, 2008, 9:46 PM:

"You're the best. Zach's description of himself as Obama's 'supervisor' establishes the connection between PV and Acorn back then."

From Strom to MonCrief dated October 20, 2008, 7:44 PM:

"Hi. Sorry I've been so out of touch. big Acorn story landed in my lap on Friday, and I'm scrambling to get it into the paper. Held tonight for space, but at least they thought it worthy of keeping at the length I wanted.

"I'm still planning on heading for D.C. on Wednesday. Does that still work for you? Please let me know the logistics. I'm looking forward to meeting you in person."

Instead, as Ms. Strom's October 21, 2008 voicemail to Ms. MonCrief memorialized, Ms. Strom was made to "stand down."

But, like Mr. Lauria, Ms. MonCrief bravely stood up instead of self-protectively remained silent.

The Steven Rattner whom Mr. Lauria identified as threatener is closely connected to The New York Times as well as President Obama.


"Steven 'Steve' Lawrence Rattner is an American financier and private equity investor. He is one of the four founding partners of the private investment firm Quadrangle Group, which invests media and communications companies globally. On February 23, 2009, the Wall Street Journal announced that Rattner would be named to the Treasury Department as auto industry adviser. The New York Times reported that he would be lead advisor and leader of the industry group for Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.

"A graduate of Brown University, Rattner started his career as a reporter with The New York Times, first at the Washington bureau, where he became close friends with Times' ownership-family member Arthur Sulzberger, who also was at the time working as a reporter; and then at the London bureau. Subsequently, Rattner quit journalism and joined Morgan Stanley, where he founded their Communications Group. In 1989 he joined Lazard as a General Partner; he founded their Media and Communications Group. In 1997 he became Lazard's deputy chairman and Deputy CEO, a new position. He stepped down from those positions in 1999, and left Lazard in 2000, with three other partners in that firm, to found the Quadrangle Group.

"In January 2008 it was reported that, through his friendship with Rattner, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's extensive business interests were placed in 'a sort of blind trust' because of Bloomberg's possible run for the presidency. Bloomberg would 'continue to have control of and access to certain investment decisions.'Quadrangle will continue with its responsibilities for Bloomberg after Rattner's departure for the Treasury position. Bloomberg also strongly endorsed Rattner's Treasury appointment.

"Rattner is married to Maureen White, the former National Finance Chair for the Democratic Party. He has four children."

Michael J. Gaynor

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Biography - Michael J. Gaynor

Michael J. Gaynor has been practicing law in New York since 1973. A former partner at Fulton, Duncombe & Rowe and Gaynor & Bass, he is a solo practitioner admitted to practice in New York state and federal courts and an Association of the Bar of the City of New York member.

Gaynor graduated magna cum laude, with Honors in Social Science, from Hofstra University's New College, and received his J.D. degree from St. John's Law School, where he won the American Jurisprudence Award in Evidence and served as an editor of the Law Review and the St. Thomas More Institute for Legal Research. He wrote on the Pentagon Papers case for the Review and obscenity law for The Catholic Lawyer and edited the Law Review's commentary on significant developments in New York law.

The day after graduating, Gaynor joined the Fulton firm, where he focused on litigation and corporate law. In 1997 Gaynor and Emily Bass formed Gaynor & Bass and then conducted a general legal practice, emphasizing litigation, and represented corporations, individuals and a New York City labor union. Notably, Gaynor & Bass prevailed in the Second Circuit in a seminal copyright infringement case, Tasini v. New York Times, against newspaper and magazine publishers and Lexis-Nexis. The U.S. Supreme Court affirmed, 7 to 2, holding that the copyrights of freelance writers had been infringed when their work was put online without permission or compensation.

Gaynor currently contributes regularly to,,, and and has contributed to many other websites. He has written extensively on political and religious issues, notably the Terry Schiavo case, the Duke "no rape" case, ACORN and canon law, and appeared as a guest on television and radio. He was acknowledged in Until Proven Innocent, by Stuart Taylor and KC Johnson, and Culture of Corruption, by Michelle Malkin. He appeared on "Your World With Cavuto" to promote an eBay boycott that he initiated and "The World Over With Raymond Arroyo" (EWTN) to discuss the legal implications of the Schiavo case. On October 22, 2008, Gaynor was the first to report that The New York Times had killed an Obama/ACORN expose on which a Times reporter had been working with ACORN whistleblower Anita MonCrief.

Gaynor's email address is

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