Calin Dan on Sun, 20 Sep 1998 16:31:44 +0200 (MET DST)

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<nettime> other Pyramid schemes

>Pyramid schemes all over.

Long before the Albanian scheme, there was a Romanian one. (Romanians had
always the obsession to be the first and - accordingly - the frustration of
not being aknowleged as such.)

The difference was I guess in scale: Romania is less poor than Albania,
with a bigger territory and therefore with less homogenous behavior at
micro economic levels. Therefore the style of the collapse was lighter, and
didn't reach the traumatic dimensions of a civil war.
Moreover, the pyramid had a face in the person of its charismatic promoter
and director, a certain Mr. Stoica. After the collapse, he gave interviews
with energetic statements about his innocence and went to jail as a martyr
for the good cause of  enriching the poor. I understand that he also
published a volume of memoirs during his (otherwise brief) detention.
Insistent rumors were circulating about the connection between the scheme
and the financial empowerment of the Romanian nationalist party (PUNR) via
the politically oriented bank system of the country.

An interesting question raised by the Pyramid syndrome might be to what
extend those schemes can be used as operational weapons in pauper areas and
to what purposes (de-stabilisation in favor of a neighboring power, local
inter-gang fights, regional implementation of military monitoring,
cleansing of funds coming from various internal/external sources).

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