WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Biden White House has taken the art world to task over “corruption,” even as it allows Hunter Biden to peddle his creations to buyers for up to $500,000 apiece.
In December 2021, the White House published a report entitled “United States Strategy on Countering Corruption.”
The 38-page publication talks a good talk on corruption, noting in its introduction:
“When government officials abuse public power for private gain, they do more than simply appropriate illicit wealth. Corruption robs citizens of equal access to vital services, denying the right to quality healthcare, public safety, and education.
“It degrades the business environment, subverts economic opportunity, and exacerbates inequality.
“It often contributes to human rights violations and abuses, and can drive migration.
“As a fundamental threat to the rule of law, corruption hollows out institutions, corrodes public trust, and fuels popular cynicism toward effective, accountable governance.”
White House warns art world rife with money laundering as Hunter Biden sells paintings for $500,000https://t.co/nIjtT1pYSr
— Sean Spicer (@seanspicer) December 7, 2021
The report declares that one of its five “pillars” of work to address corruption would be for the U.S. government to “[Hold] corrupt actors accountable.”
While appearing to take a hard line on corruption, the report also brings up the art world in its industry-specific discussions.
“The markets for art and antiquities—and the market participants who facilitate transactions—are especially vulnerable to a range of financial crimes.
“Built-in opacity, lack of stable and predictable pricing, and inherent cross-border transportability of goods sold, make the market optimal for illicit value transfer, sanctions evasion, and corruption.”
What about Hunter? Ex-White House ethics official calls out Biden admin for releasing report highlighting money laundering in the art industry – while president's son's paintings sell for…
via https://t.co/R7mV0rVXXP https://t.co/Uhwy09zt9f
— Benny (@bennyjohnson) December 7, 2021
Notably, it also points out that:
“The AML [Anti-Money Laundering] Act mandates that the Treasury conduct a study of the facilitation of money laundering, terrorism finance, and other illicit financial dealings through the trade in works of art, which will be sent to the Congress by the end of 2021.”
Interestingly, despite the strong words in the report, the White House does not appear to be investigating the art dealings of one Hunter Biden.
Hunter Biden proclaimed Thursday it is "courageous" to sell "art" to "anonymous" investors for $500,000.00. https://t.co/spF9lcjsY9
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) July 31, 2021
According to Fox News, the president’s son, who has no formal experience in the art world, has priced his paintings between $75,000 and $500,000 each, supposedly for anonymous buyers.
In addition, the White House reportedly has an “ethics plan” in place to keep Hunter Biden in the dark about who is buying his “artwork.”
Naturally, these dealings have fallen under criticism, as they are suspected to provide an opportunity for buyers to influence the Biden White House.
According to the New York Post, Walter Shaub, the former head of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, tweeted in October 2021:
“There is no ethics program in the world that can be built around the head of state’s staff working with a dealer to keep the public in the dark about the identities of individuals who pay vast sums to the leader’s family member for subjectively priced items of no intrinsic value.”
“If this were Trump, Xi [Jinping] or [Vladimir] Putin, you’d have no doubt whatsoever that this creates a vehicle for funneling cash to the first family in exchange for access or favors.
“Nor would you doubt that the appearance of monetizing the presidency was outrageous.”
The supposed anonymity of Hunter Biden’s art buyers has also been called into question anyway, as Fox News reports that the president’s son has been seen at art shows in the presence of buyers.
Shaub was first to point out the irony in the White House’s report on corruption, tweeting:
“The White House just issued a report flagging that money laundering is a problem in the… wait for it… art sale industry.”
The White House just issued a report flagging that money laundering is a problem in the… wait for it… art sale industry: “The markets for art and antiquities—and the market participants who facilitate transactions—are especially vulnerable to a range of financial crimes.” /1
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) December 6, 2021
Fox News contacted the White House for comment on the Hunter Biden corruption issue, but the White House did not respond.
However, in October, the president appeared to take a dismissive attitude toward the possibility of corruption in his son’s art dealings.
The New York Post reports:
“When a Post reporter asked Biden in October if he was concerned about potential corruption resulting from the sale of his son’s artwork, the president looked the reporter in the eyes and said: ‘You gotta be kidding me.’”
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Coincidence? Hunter Biden’s art gallery DOUBLED in government handouts after Daddy Joe took office (op-ed)
Originally published October 11, 2021
The following contains editorial content which is the opinion of the author.
There have been cases over the years of relatives cashing in on the political cache of their relatives.
One of the more glaring examples of that was the brother of former president Jimmy Carter, a lovable oaf named Billy Carter, who took the opportunity to cash in on his brother’s election as president. Nobody however can hold a candle to Hunter Biden, crackhead son of Sleepy Joe Biden.
In the case of Billy Carter, he converted his relationship with his brother the president into a beer marketing campaign bearing his name…Billy Beer. The brew was made by The Falls City Brewing company which formulated the suds and produced it, according to Mental Floss.
The beer was a mere fad and soon faded into oblivion, but the practice of trading on the political connections of family hasn’t. Hunter Biden is the poster child of quid pro quo.
Hunter Biden has long used his father’s political chops to enrich himself, finding himself as a totally unqualified alcoholic and drug addict appointed to corporate boards such as AMTRAK and later Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian anergy company. Now however he has taken it to a whole other level.
Utilizing a straw for blowing stuff out instead of snorting coke up his nose, Hunter Biden has managed to leverage his last name for a cool profit selling what he passes as “paintings” for prices of up to $500,000 large each. Not bad for amateur “art.”
Accompanying those sales are a myriad of ethical questions, along with a lack of transparency for an administration that sold itself as the “most ethical and transparent” administration in American history. Given Hunter Biden’s history of enriching himself as he sold access to his father, this whole arrangement raises more questions than it answers.
Making things even more, shall we say interesting, is a New York Post report from last week that shows federal loans to the gallery representing Hunter Biden more than doubled after Biden was installed as president.
According to the Post, the George Berges Gallery received $150,000 in COVID “disaster assistance loans” from the Small Business Administration last year, as outlined in public records.
Amazingly…and quite a “coincidence”…the loan was recently “revised,” with the SBA approving an additional $350,000 to the gallery this summer, records indicate. That occurred on July 26, just prior to Berges’ marketing of 15 paintings by the crack head Hunter Biden.
In addition to those loans, the gallery received two additional payments in April 2020 and February 2021 under the SBA’s “Payroll Protection Program” (PPP) which were designed to help businesses with paying employees during the pandemic.
Follow the money… https://t.co/fytgLs7raQ
— Rachel Campos-Duffy (@RCamposDuffy) October 9, 2021
In sum, some $580,000 in taxpayer-funded relief money was provided to the gallery where only two people are employed, according to SBA records.
The Post reached out to Berges, who declined to reply to specific inquires as to whether or not the Bidens intervened in any of the SBA loans, whether Hunter Biden received any of the cash in the form of salary or stipend, or if any funds were expended to market his “art.”
“I received my PPP loan in April of 2020 when Donald Trump was president, along with countless other galleries which, considering a global pandemic was happening we had every right to…most galleries received this loan,” Berges told the paper in an email. “We were not unique.”
Still, Berges’ gallery received far and above the largest SBA disaster loan moneys, with a watchdog group reporting that out of more than 100 galleries in New York City’s 10th congressional district, noting the apparent favoritism.
“We’ve reached a new low in American politics where the president’s son gets his midlife crisis art career subsidized by the American people as part of our pandemic response to COVID,” said Tom Anderson, director of the government integrity project at the National Legal and Policy Center.
NLPC filed a complaint last week to the SBA in which they questioned the taxpayer-subsidized loans to the gallery, while noting the apparent large discrepancy in funds received compared to other local galleries in New York.
“You can’t make this up,” Anderson said, while adding that funds from the federal loans could have been used to promote Hunter Biden’s “art”—a clear ethical breach. “This is a unique situation in which the president’s son is directly benefiting from federal loans made to a third party,” he said.
Yet another government ethics expert also weighed in on the loan made to Berges’ gallery.
“If he [George Berges] got any special treatment on the loans from the president, that could be problematic,” said Richard Painter, law professor at the University of Minnesota and former chief White House Counsel to President George W. Bush.
In an interview with the Post, Berges said he met Hunter Biden over two years ago through collectors in Los Angeles, and has helped him turn his “abstract expressionist painting” from a hobby into a full-time job.
HUNTER BIDEN IS "Not Good" when it comes to ART, Ethics, Cyber-Security and Being in the Navy. He excels at Finding CRACK, selfies, and "getting away with it" —HUNTER should NOT be in "the arts"—inadequate STRUCTURE for anyone in Recovery. Hunter, I CARE! pic.twitter.com/mimDAWE49p
— Greg Kelly-Ripped in 2022. (@gregkellyusa) October 6, 2021
Berges held a private viewing last week in Los Angeles for 200 celebrities and collectors, attended by people such as Los Angeles’ feckless mayor, Eric Garcetti, and former boxer Sugar Ray Leonard. The viewing of Hunter Biden’s “art” gave people the opportunity to purchase pieces for between $75,000 and $500,000.
Los Angeles has an indoor mask mandate, unless you're a political elite going to Hunter Biden's art showing. pic.twitter.com/ELgQb8CeqY
— "My Son Hunter" The Hunter Biden Movie (@MySonHunter) October 6, 2021
Meanwhile, a viewing at Berges’ SoHo gallery in New York has been postponed until next spring.
This is the “art” Hunter Biden is selling for $500,000 pic.twitter.com/MHd8c9SRVi
— Kyle Martinsen (@KyleMartinsen_) October 5, 2021
Prior to the LA showing, it is reported by Fox News that Biden sold five “paintings” for $75,000 each, however Berges’ publicist has denied any of the “art” had been sold.
As reported in Law Enforcement Today several months ago, the White House said that buyers of the art would remain anonymous which calls into question transparency that the Biden White House had promised would be part and parcel of the administration.
Critics have also pointed out that Hunter Biden’s participation in public events to promote his “art” would make any such arrangement difficult to enforce.
“I’ve said from the beginning it wasn’t going to work to make it anonymous,” said Painter. “Word is going to get out.”
Trivia: Which is Hunter Biden’s “art” going for hundreds of thousands of dollars, and which is the back of an envelope going for $0.95 online? pic.twitter.com/j9n5gkWSxH
— Tommy Pigott (@TommyPigott) October 7, 2021
Moreover, as noted by Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-NY), a member of the House Small Business Committee, “Hunter Biden’s recent diversion into the art world is the perfect example of Washington, DC grifters profiting from public service.
“Revelations that Hunter Biden’s art broker was granted a massive SBA loan further erodes public trust in the president, just when you thought it could not go any lower.”
Hunter Biden’s foray into the art world has been panned by some critics, including Scott Indrisek.
“I guess it’s important that wounded men of a certain age and privileged background have the opportunity to find themselves creatively…it’s just too bad that everyone else is expected to pay attention,” he told Artnet.
In the case of Billy Carter, he was just a lovable old dupe perhaps looking for his 15 minutes of fame. Hunter Biden? He is an expert at trading in on the family name to pad his wallet. His newly found “art” career is merely a continuation of enriching himself as part of the Biden crime family.
Editor note: In 2020, we saw a nationwide push to “defund the police”. While we all stood here shaking our heads wondering if these people were serious… they cut billions of dollars in funding for police officers. And as a result, crime has skyrocketed – all while the same politicians who said “you don’t need guns, the government will protect you” continued their attacks on both our police officers and our Second Amendment rights.
And that’s exactly why we’re launching this national crowdfunding campaign as part of our efforts to help “re-fund the police”.
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