Monday, April 3, 2017

A look at Jared Kushner's financial disclosure report

[EVG file photo]

Details of Jared Kushner's real-estate empire were made public in documents released late Friday night, according to published reports. As Bloomberg reported, Kushner, the son-in-law and senior adviser to President Donald Trump, "held personal lines of credit of as much as $90 million to 10 financial institutions as of his Jan. 22 appointment to the White House."

The New York Times reports that Kushner resigned from more than 200 positions in the partnerships and limited liability companies that make up the family real-estate business, which has acquired $7 billion worth of commercial and residential property over the last decade.

The 54-page financial disclosure report shows, however, that "Kushner will remain a beneficiary of most of those same entities," worth at least hundreds of millions of dollars.

The Times on Saturday examined the "perilous legal and ethical ground" that Kushner and his wife, Ivanka Trump, are on now.

Unlike Mr. Trump, who is exempt from conflict of interest laws, both Mr. Kushner and Ms. Trump — who took a formal White House position this past week — are forbidden under federal criminal and civic law to take any action that might benefit their particular financial holdings.

In 2013, the Kushner Companies started buying up some 40-plus buildings in the East Village. According to the Cooper Square Committee, only Steve Croman owns more residential buildings in the East Village than Kushner does. The properties are managed by Westminster Management, a division of Kushner Companies.

Meanwhile, Kushner will be keeping very busy. Last week, the President appointed him to lead the newly created White House Office of American Innovation. (Read the official White House memo on this here.)

Per The Washington Post:

Kushner’s ambitions for what the new office can achieve are grand. At least to start, the team plans to focus its attention on reimagining Veterans Affairs; modernizing the technology and data infrastructure of every federal department and agency; remodeling workforce-training programs; and developing “transformative projects” under the banner of Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure plan, such as providing broadband Internet service to every American.

Already on Kushner's to-do list: brokering a peace pact between Israel and the Palestinians.

One last note... Elizabeth Spiers has a piece in The Washington Post about her time working as editor-in-chief of The New York Observer under Kushner's ownership.

I inherited an office and a desktop computer, both in fine but used condition. The computer was a recent-model Mac, but when I turned it on, it was inexplicably running Windows. I summoned our beleaguered IT guy to explain, and he informed me that it had belonged to Kushner, who liked the design of Apple products but preferred the Windows OS.

“So he was basically using a $2,500 desktop as a monitor?” I asked. The IT guy shrugged.

In retrospect, this tiny moment seems like a metaphor. Frankensteining two products you appreciate into one product you appreciate even more isn’t irrational; it’s even creative, in a way. On the other hand, why did the newspaper’s owner need a $2,500 monitor? How was it anything but a vanity object?


John M said...

That computer story makes no sense at all. For some time, Macs can run Windows OS. It's pretty easy and works like a charm. So, no, he wasn't using a $2500 computer as a monitor. He was using a $2500 computer as a computer, running Windows instead of a Mac OS.

Do they have any editors over there? Wow.

Anonymous said...

After Kushner gets done "reimagining" and "modernizing" everything and achieving peace in the Middle East, maybe he can cure cancer in his spare time.

Ivanka has essentially "married her father" b/c Kushner is nearly a duplicate of her father in terms of ethics (or lack thereof), in terms of plunging headlong into doing brash things he has no knowledge of, and in terms of Kushner having a daddy who made everything possible for him that he'd never have achieved on his own.

Giovanni said...

Can you imagine what would have happened to the Middle East peace process if Ivanka had married Gary Busey?

Gojira said...

Eh, Gio, in that case she would be nothing but a Buseybody...

Giovanni said...

@Gojira Well that beats being a Trump Humper any day.

cmarrtyy said...

They don't care. AMERICA HELD HOSTAGE: DAY 71.

Anonymous said...

perilous legal and ethical ground

What's that even mean and does it even matter. These people do apparently whatever they want and we have a GOP establishment who's happy to look the other way. Our government at the moment is an oligarchy.

JQ LLC said...

Not only an oligarchy, and a kakistocracy

With a figurehead in charge and a plutocabinet shaping the policies themselves when they once used lobbyists. (maybe these obscenely wealthy sociopaths all got tired of spending millions to these firms themselves, so let the taxpayers pay for these demented and warped plans)

Unknown said...

What are you talking about? Windows boxes are way cheaper. Of course Macs can run Windows -- that's the point.

Anonymous said...

Yup, Unknown is right, Spiers not making a pro/anti Windows or Mac point, she was just pointing out that the guy who is tasked with making our government more efficient didn't seem to understand that if you are going to run Windows buying a nice Mac and putting Windows on it is dumb. There are reasons to run Windows on a Mac but newspaper work, office working general, is not one of those reasons. What's a good equivalent? Oh, how about getting from Laguardia to Manhattan by, oh, taking a cab to Newark Penn Station in NJ and then taking a Path train to Penn Station and the subway from there. Sure, it works, you can totally do it and, if you need to visit NJ and you totally get off riding Path trains then it kinda makes sense. Otherwise, there are cheaper, fast, and smarter ways to get from Laguardia to Manhattan. Jared Kushner didn't seem to understand that there are smarter ways to run a Windows machine in your newspaper office than buying a sweet Mac and running Windows. Seems like a fair point to me and from all I've seen of Kushner probably an accurate assessment of his government running skills.