Al­most lynched

Finweek English Edition - - Openers -

WHEN YOUR age­ing cor­re­spon­dent worked in 1960 at what was then Mer­rill, Lynch, Peirce, Fen­ner and Beane – the world’s largest stock­bro­ker now re­duced to sub­sidiary sta­tus at the Bank of Amer­ica – he learned a hard les­son when he wrote a let­ter to the South African Em­bassy in Wash­ing­ton com­plain­ing about some or other apartheid hideosity.

His mis­take was to send the let­ter on com­pany sta­tionery. SA’s then am­bas­sador wrote to the chair­man of Mer­rill Lynch ask­ing if my views re­flected those of the firm. As the firm had han­dled var­i­ous fund-rais­ing drives for SA, earn­ing fees in the process, the roof fell in on your then young of­fender.

There was no dis­missal, though ev­ery­thing short of that was vis­ited upon this erring young­ster. There was a re­minder of that in­ci­dent last week when a bro­ker at a lead­ing SA fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tion saw fit to ad­dress your age­ing cor­re­spon­dent on a com­pany let­ter­head about com­ments of an anti-Semitic na­ture made by our tact­less Deputy Min­is­ter of For­eign Af­fairs, Fa­tima Ha­jaig.

This bro­ker firmly agrees with Ha­jaig, in­vited me to visit some loony web­site and ad­vised me ”That the Zion­ist elite con­trol the world isn’t a con­spir­acy the­ory. Any­one who la­bels peo­ple as con­spir­atists (sic) does not be­lieve in Satan, who is the mas­ter of all con­spir­a­cies.”

And that im­be­cile han­dles money for other peo­ple!

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