Skip to comments.The Fake Economist Who Conned A Nation
Posted on 02/05/2013 11:33:40 AM PST by 1rudeboy
[I had to excerpt independent.co.uk, per FR rules. My paraphrase follows below, in italics].
A man who claimed to be a former employee of the World Bank, the United Nations, and a professor in the United States has been proven to be a fraud after becoming a media celebrity for criticizing Portugal's austerity measures.
After we read this, we got in touch with Filipe Miranda, a former Planet Money intern who grew up in Portugal, and whose family still lives there. Here's Filipe's take:
This guy came out of nowhere and spent about a month and a half hoodwinking the Portuguese elite. He was invited to speak at numerous events. At one of them, he was even introduced by the wife of a former president.
Apparently, among the few people who suspected him were members of the police, who were familiar with him because he had already spend a significant period of time behind bars.
Despite that and despite the fake degree and the complete lack of evidence that he was a coordinator from the UN or a professor anywhere he was quoted extensively in Expresso, a major Portuguese newspaper, and spoke on a panel at the main Portuguese news channel. No one seems to have done any due diligence until the UN put an end to his lie.
When the news came out, the editor from Expresso said he made a "terrible mistake" by "not confirming if this gentlemen was the person he said he was".
The editor said he had lunch with Baptista da Silva, and thought he had "a very consistent and credible discourse from the economic point of view." He was given a card which" didn't seem to be forged." And, the editor said, a reporter from the paper saw Baptista da Silva give a talk at a high-profile cultural organization.
When the truth came out, he accused the media and others of doing a "character lynching."
In a statement, he said:
Calling me a con-man has been easy. But I have yet to see them say the same thing about ... those who transfer capital, both legally and illegally, to tax havens, against the interest of the state, evading their tax bills ... That's what I call complicit silence which benefits not the infringer but the criminal.
It seems like Baptista da Silva pulled off his con in part because he said what a lot of people wanted to hear. He criticized the harsh austerity measures imposed by the government and warned of dire social and political consequences.
I sat on this for a few days, wondering if the American media would pick it up. (Almost) didn’t happen, because the guy’s a lefty.
Yes, that sounds about right. He was saying everything the left-wing news media establishment wanted to hear, so they didn’t bother to check his credentials or his background. None of the usual vetting, and they probably would have ridiculed anybody who suggested that he should have been checked out more thoroughly.
That sort of thing sounds so familiar. Does the name “Barack Obama” ring a bell?
Dang. I thought it was going to be an article about Krugman.
Speaking of Krugman, how do we know he *actually* won a Nobel Prize?
His con continues. And the FReepers who fall for it continue to annoy me.
And here I thought it was about J.M.Keynes.
I thought it was that idiot too.
Paul Krugman and Eugene Rosen of Sandy Hook fame are both cat lovers, coincidence? I think not.
There is no such thing as a “phony economist” any more than there is such a thing as a “real economist.”
There is no testing for someone to meet professional standards, as there is for lawyers, engineers, architects, doctors, etc.
Even the ladies working at a beautician shop have to pass a test.
Any old fraud can be an economist. And many are.
From the title, I thought this was going to be about Paul Krugman.
Did they figure out he wasn’t a “real” economist when he started making sense?
It doesn't just ring a bell, it sets off the entire alarm system!
Pretty much the SAME "modus_operandi" as America's MSM of today.
Sounds like a character from a Woody Allen movie:
"Of course I was duped, fully taken in!", exclaimed Mr. Santos, sweat beeding in the furrows of his brow. "His card lacked all the tell tales of an economic fraud." The words blurted out, his desperation obvious to everyone, but himself.
As he spoke Nicolau glanced nervously about the room. Despite the sympathetic audience, leftist floatsam found in any random newsroom around the world, the jig was up. He'd already said too much.
He might as well have emphatically exclaimed, "I am a jackass" and they would have brayed their agreement. His act was indefensible in any objective sense. The single saving grace was the fraud spoke like an honest traveler.
Let's make a movie of it. I'll write the script
Did he say we should double the price of our oil, to bring back jobs?
the same way a rapist can lead the news on gun control?