Sunday, 10 January 2016

Get Money


How did that happen?

I’ve just finished reading Richard Rohmer’s Golden Phoenix: the Biography of Peter Munk and anyone who says I haven’t is a liar.  I’m ready to give it a grade (C) and vote we take the cover down from the “currently reading” side of the blog, where it’s been shaming me for four months.

What did I learn? Peter Munk made a lot of money and is a swell guy, what with all that earning and owning.  Ask anyone.  (Rohmer’s source appears to be Peter Munk.)  One time a newspaper said one of Munk’s publicly held companies paid him too much, but they were wrong.  The stockholders are lucky they got anything.

No stockholder had complained, no backlash came from investors.  The controversy was now behind him.

Well, that settles that, then.

Clairtone went bankrupt, but that was Nova Scotia’s fault.  He had this idea to take Canadian-backed mortgages and sell them in Switzerland as as "a unique, hybrid financial instrument" before it was cool, but "it was just too difficult to get an underwriting." He never got to build his golf course in the shadow of the pyramids, but that was Egypt’s fault. The trick to working with a state is knowing the right people and the proper application of money.  But no one can win them all.

You know who’s a great guy? Suharto.

You know who knows a good deal when he sees it?  Adnan Khashoggi.  He also loves to party!

You know who can be had for a price?  Brian Mulroney.

Just like Richard Rohmer.


  1. I remember the book as a solid D. Every bit as captivating as The Arctic Imperative, but nowhere near as exciting as Ultimatum. And, yes, I'm taking Peter Munk's skiing accident and associated romance into account.

  2. I gave it a C because Clairtone and the Kastner train are both interesting, as opposed to anything that ever happened ever, ever, ever, ever, ever to E.P. Taylor.

    Next to E.P. Taylor, Peter Munk is the great fucking Gatsby.

  3. Did you know E.P. Taylor owned a horse AND a bottling plant? It's true!

    1. Apparently, he had children, too. I know because I read the footnotes.