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Corporate Crackdowns, American vs. Russian

November 04, 2003

Re "Russian Events Leave White House Wary," Nov. 1: Granted that President Vladimir Putin's actions may affect free markets in Russia, but letting crooked executives of Enron and WorldCom, etc., go unpunished also leaves free markets all over the world in disarray. It would be appropriate for the White House to move these executives into hard labor camps and out of their multimillion-dollar homes, promptly.

B.V. Bhimani

Winnetka

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The Russian government freezes some assets of a corporation and prosecutes and jails its executive for fraud before it sells its assets and distributes the dividends -- applying proven Stalinist preventive principles. The American government freezes the assets of a corporation and prosecutes and jails its executives for fraud after they have already distributed all their assets and dividends -- applying proven legal prosecution principles. Putin's former KGB colleagues, the siloviki, become enriched -- applying proven Boris Yeltsin techniques.

In America, the money is gone, shareholders suffer and taxpayers pick up the tab for prosecution and legislative expenses. And when the Russian national debt becomes unbearable for the International Monetary Fund, the good old American taxpayer and American government will be asked again to add another financial burden to their national debt misery for another generation. Indeed, by taking some prevention measures early, wouldn't it lessen our financial burden later and save us from economic and diplomatic turmoil?

Dan Matulich

Rolling Hills Estates

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