R ecent published reports about our richest Congresspersons include California Senator Dianne Feinstein near the top of the list. Her estimated net worth– a whopping $46 million to $108 million. Nice . . . very, very nice . . . for her anyway. But where did this wealth come from? Putting the same question another way, how did a long–sitting United States Senator get so rich? Tracing the sources of wealth for a well known politican seems like fodder for a mystery novel, but in fact the real world answers where Ms. Feinstein are concerned aren’t hard to locate at all. Readily available evidence about Dianne Feinstein’s wealth creation can be found in her financial disclosure reports filed with the Office of Public Records of the United States Senate, and in a variety of investigative reports and analyses that have been published over the years and can still be viewed today through a search of the Internet. All that’s needed is for one to simply take the time to look, and pull the pieces of her life history together as a coherent whole.
That’s what I’ll be doing in a series of articles that begins with this Part I. Over the next few months I’ll share with you what I’ve discovered about Dianne Feinstein and her financial dealings and affairs. It’s quite a story, actually. Dianne Feinstein, it turns out, is the poster child for a rotten–to–the–core insider/crony system of big government handouts in Washington D.C. and California. Want to learn more? Read on . . . and follow the later installments in this series to be published here at Revolutimes. This is a story of mega–dollar political cronyism at work; and it captures clearly the essence of a corrupt culture that has made Senator Feinstein (and many others in Congress) wealthy beyond their wildest dreams at a time when average Americans are seeing their own wealth and dreams disappear into the mists. Congresspersons getting rich while America goes bankrupt– this is the legacy of our modern day political class, and this is what needs to be changed right now if our country is to become free and prosperous ever again.
Let’s start this “Part I” article with some basics– by looking at Dianne Feinstein’s employment history. Hard work, after all, is how most of us earn our livings and piece together whatever wealth structure we might be able to accumulate over the course of a lifetime. Senator Feinstein is nearly 80 years old– perhaps she’s been a prudent saver who worked diligently and hard to create a nest egg and provide some comfort in her retirement years to come. Picture a prudent and hardworking saver. A pleasant vision indeed; but unfortunately that’s not what the evidence shows in the case of Ms. Feinstein. What we find instead is that Dianne Feinstein never held a job in the private sector (the only place where wealth is created) in her entire life. She’s always been a government employee– and the income stream for her work and services has consisted solely of government paychecks. Government work might provide enough money to support a reasonable standard of living (as a Senator, for example, she earn a base salary of $174,000 per year), but a government paycheck hardly generates the sort of big dollar income that translates into a net worth in the tens (or hundreds) of millions of dollars. Check it out for yourself– here’s a quick resume for Dianne Feinstein’s employment career. What you’ll quickly see is that there aren’t any job titles over the years that might legitimately give rise to any sort of huge payday along the way:
DIANNE FEINSTEIN’S CAREER PATH (IN A NUTSHELL)
1952–1955: College Days (She majored in History and Political Science)
1956–1978: Various public sector boards and commissions, including the California Industrial Welfare Commission; California Women’s Board of Terms and Paroles; the San Francisco Commission on Crime; and the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.
1978–1988: Mayor of San Francisco
1990: She ran a losing campaign for Governor of California
1992–present: United States Senator from California
Dianne Feinstein has operated in the world of “public service” over the entire course of her life, and her publicly available Financial Disclosure Report for 2010 (“FDR”) indicates rather clearly that she didn’t save much of her employment income over the years. The Feinstein FDR identifies a couple of income fund accounts in her name (each valued at $5000–$15,000); a 1991 blind trust (valued at $15,000–$50,000) and a pension from the City and County of San Francisco in the amount of $50,968 (she’s a “double–dipper”– receiving a government pension and a current government salary both at the same time). The Feinstein FDR shows a Trust from her deceased husband; a collection of small venture fund accounts (mostly in the range of $5000 or less); and two bank accounts standing in her name. That’s it. While a Financial Disclosure Report isn’t the same as an audited balance sheet or income statement, the Feinstein FDR (142 pages in length) does tell us that there is only a modest collection of assets held in the senator’s own name.
The vast majority of holdings described in the Feinstein FDR are described as either the separate property of her husband Richard Blum (pictured with the senator above); or in the case of two identified properties (Carlton Hotel and Hawaii condominium) as jointly owned assets of Feinstein and Blum. (More about Richard Blum in later installments in this series.) The evidence seems quite compelling– only a tiny fraction of Dianne Feinstein present estimated net worth of $46 to $108 million arises from savings which might have arisen from her government income over the years. And since employment income isn’t the answer, we’ll need to look elsewhere if we’re going to figure out where Dianne Feinstein’s net worth actually comes from.
In the next installment of this series I’ll take a look at the possibility that Ms. Feinstein might have inherited her wealth from a rich family, or picked it up along the way from former husbands. Maybe there we’ll find some answers. Stay tuned at www.revolutimes,com: “How Did Dianne Feinstein Get So Rich? (Part II)”– coming soon.