Excited Delirium Book: Chapter 17 (OMNINet: Greyrock II)
Author’s Note: The following is Chapter 17 of the my online book “Excited Delirium”. Please post comments. Please tell your friends about this story. If you’ve missed a chapter, please click here for Chapter 1 (Prelude) or here for the full index.
“We don’t’ want the draft, you idiot!” Garamond shouted into his speakerphone as he worked on a set of files in his lush Manhattan office space.
He was speaking with a Senator from Massachusetts, a novice who was elected in the most recent reversion to the Democrats. A change that Garamond conceded had to happen, if only to make the American public think voting made a difference.
“But Mr. Garamond, sir, you have to understand,” Senator Wayne pleaded as he tried to mount a defense to his position on the draft. “The US Armed Forces can’t extend into any new regions, in particular Iran, if we don’t have any additional resources. We’re tapped out. We can’t get any more from the reserves and all of our regular duty soldiers are getting close to being burnt out by the Iraq war. Hell, a shitload of them are keeling over from the depleted uranium that your suppliers are stuffing into their armour.”
“You know as well as I do that a few million young men will sign up as soon as we blame Iran for nuking one of our beloved towns,” Garamond said coldly into the speakphone. “They did after 9/11 and they’ll do it again when the shit really hits the fan,” Garamond announced.
“I wish I had your confidence sir, but I really don’t see Iran dropping a nuke on the US any time soon. Intelligence has proven again and again that they’re actually trying to create a legit energy program and we’re just getting in their way. They’re sitting on about $4 trillion in oil and gas reserves and if we don’t help them out, we’ll lose out on the market share to the Chinese.”
Garamond paused and counted to himself, not wanting to spoil a newly developed relationship with the young and ambitious Senator, if only because he had somehow weaseled his way on to the Defense Oversight Committee.
Before answering, he scribbled his notes down and made sure that he would remember the name of Wilson Wayne as he distributed his judgments on people that caused opposition.
But first, he would give Wayne another chance.
“Wayne. May I call you Wayne?” he started kindly.
“Wayne. The reason we don’t want the draft is that it makes it nearly impossible to recruit new soldiers to Greyrock and other contractors like it. You know that Greyrock is a much more effective fighting force and that we’re going to need a massive army of ambitious and devoted men rather than a mess of punks like we did at the end of the 1960s. In time, it’ll cost a little more, but the reality is that you just can’t find this kind of energy when people are made to do something that they don’t want to do. Young men have to want to fight. We learned the hard way that we can’t make them.”
“It’s a compelling argument, I know, but I have to make sure that it’s a consideration. If we don’t, then people will think we’ve gone soft.”
Garamond kept the obvious thought to himself and kept on with his arguments, starting to notch up the threats slightly.
“I ask you not to do this. As a personal favour. Please heed my request and I will do everything I can to make sure that you enjoy your next four years the way any civilized politician should.” He tried to end his last comment with a smile on his face. It was impossible to have these kind of conversations without sounding cold and he learned that sometimes he had to overdo the emotions if he was to sound convincing.
“I’ll take your request under advisement, but I can’t honestly make any promises,” Wayne responded, not being very sincere with his comment.
“Goodbye Senator. I wish you all the best.” It was a cold and bland response from Garamond and it took the young representative off guard. For the first time, he started to worry about his relationship with the powerful business man.
“As you like, Mr. Garamond. Please believe me that we’ve considered all of the other options. I just wanted you to know first so that you could prepare yourself and your partners for any changes in business.”
“Goodbye Senator,” Garamond said as he pressed the ‘release’ button.
He paused for a few moments and looked out his window and then peered down to the street to see the hundreds of people rushing around, hurrying to their next destination.
It was moments like this that he enjoyed most because they gave him a chance to focus and to channel his thoughts into what matters most: how to make more money and how to turn a crisis into a profit.
As always, several thoughts popped into his head at once, so he pressed record on his digital voice recorder and began dictating:
“Item One: send Senator Wayne a package like we sent the others after 9/11. Item Two: Let’s accelerate the IPO for Greyrock before anyone catches wind of Senator Wayne’s ambitions. Item Three: ensure that our media coverage of Wayne starts to include his personal affairs. Catch him on his self-abuse via the internet. Or talk about his draft-dodging activities in the 70s. Item IV: Speak to Manchester about the plans for China.
He paused again to think to himself as he watched the people hundreds of feet below.
Garamond was fully aware that the economics behind imperial expansion had changed drastically in the last ten years and he would be the first to admit that it threatens the very stability of the planet.
That no longer mattered to him. He had two things in life that got him out of bed every day: his vast array of companies, lead by the OMNINet, and his leadership role with the Univist Church, which was the rock on which he stood and the only connection to family that he might be able to boast of.
He would tell people that we no longer live in a world where armies represent the people of that country, or the peacekeepers of the world, for that matter. He reminded them that they represent shareholders. And those shareholders want their 20% or 30% net annual rate of return, so please, stay out of the way and you won’t get hurt.
Garamond turned and pressed the speaker button.
“Get King on the line.”
He waited a few moments and the phone started to ring. He paused long enough for the ring to continue four times before pressing the speaker button.
“King. Thank you for calling.”
“My pleasure, sir! What can I do for you?” Rick King breathed into the phone.
Military types were always the same. He hated them for being so obvious with their personality and their obedience, but he also knew that without it, he’d still be selling auto parts out of a beat up Lincoln somewhere in Northern Michigan.
“Let’s talk about Greyrock operations for a few minutes, shall we,” he said calmly into the speaker.
Like bullies in the yard seeking out the next nerd to grab by the underwear waistband and hang until the delicate fibre snaps, there’s something ridiculous about the position we’ve allowed to arise in the United States where insane leaders decide that yet another country is harbouring terrorists. And only with the rationale that they’re not with us, so they must be against us.
Let’s get ‘em!!
It’s unlikely that North America, the UN, Europe or any other body will recover from this cowardly transfer of wealth from government coffers to friends of the government.
But before things fall apart, the model continues: destroy. Rebuild. And have a big party at the expense of global savings.
Greyrock is at the centre of this new process.
Who could imagine that a company that started as a supplier of lockable gas caps would become the world’s largest rentable army?
Who could imagine that thugs in rural Michigan would influence the landscape of global response to international crises?
Who could imagine that the young people that run this company would come to be the most connected in Washington and other major political arenas around the globe?
Who could imagine that UN peacekeeping would be replaced by a pack of cowboys or criminals?
Who could imagine that this company would become the most profitable on the planet?
With all that, is it any surprise that Greyrock is the most profitable private organization owned by a chain of holding companies with Griffith Garamond and the OMNINet holding the key link?
The leadership of the OMNINet, especially Garamond, has been extremely influential and beneficial to the aspiring company and desires of young Rick King, the owner of the company.
The leadership team of these companies were extremely active with both Democrats, Republicans, Conservatives and Liberals to ensure that it was Greyrock that was always the top of the list when contracts came up with the military. As many in the inner circle tell themselves, it takes both wings to fly.
From humble beginnings as an auto parts supplier to impressive Goliath-like stature today, where they are the world’s number one supplier of death.
Rick King has been the owner from day one. He has deep roots with the Univists and is a nephew to Griffith Garamond.
King Manufacturing designed and built one of the first lockable gas tank covers in the early 1970s, creating an overnight empire as people feared that their beloved lifeblood for their cars would be ruined by vandals.
In the early days, Rick King’s father, Leo, gave a substantial amount of money to support the rise of political and religious groups and movements. Bags of money were given to Univist activists to keep the “Family Friendly” movement rolling. This group, along with “Friends of the Family” and other nationalist Christian organizations had one goal in mind: power. They wanted nothing less than a direct line to the President of the US and other world leaders.
In their quest, they would do anything they could to ensure this goal saw the light of day. Rigged voting machines. Armed thugs at polling stations lobbying people and bullying them as voters acted on their right to vote for whomever they wanted. Burned or stolen voting registries. Segregation in poverty-stricken communities. Bribes and distraction with gifts of free meals or other material bonuses if people simply didn’t exercise their right to choose.
Reagan. Bush. To some extent, even Clinton owed their rise to power to these groups.
And this was the first wave. The ‘thin edge of the wedge’, as they call it.
Once in power, things changed slowly at first, mainly to avoid drawing too much attention from the public, but with Bush Jr. in power, many in America were starting to realize that fascism had taken hold in America, right before their eyes.
The cycle is what’s most important. It was the religious folks that brought certain people to power and as they peddled love, peace and understanding on one front, they set up vast networks of intelligence organizations, mercenary-for-hire companies, infrastructure specialists, ammunition suppliers and other industries that would benefit from the “shock and awe” that would capture the attention of so many Americans at the turn of the millennium.
In 1985, Leo King might have had objections about the evolution of his beloved organization, mainly because he was a pacifist. He believed that a healthy, stable economy was what should be spread around the world and tried very hard to convince his friends and business partners that this was the model they should follow.
Unfortunately, his friends and business partners had other plans. Including his one and only son, Rick.
Leo died in 1985, apparently under peaceful pretences, at which point his son inherited his business.
This was the first event in a long series of well-planned activities designed to convert a basic business model to becoming the world’s largest supplier of mercenaries.
When Leo died, Rick sold the family business for $1.5 billion in cash.
For a few years, he struggled to find the right opportunity, but then returned to his religious roots: if the US was going to shove the UN out of the way, the world wouldn’t need peacekeepers. It would need professional bullies.
Finding employees was no problem at all. The ones with a sense of military history and training were happy to work for $500 per day when their government was only paying them the equivalent of about $100 per day. Recruits for the program were no problem either: leveraging his contacts with the auto trade gave him a vast calling list of unemployed line workers that were already in the militia. Now they had a chance to fight someone other than their own government.
It was a win-win in most circles.
With a small investment, he built a training facility in West Virginia. The training facility was basically a giant paintball park. Only about a thousand times more dangerous.
Hundreds of young men who were close to criminally insane were trained to be security at concerts, political events and local law enforcement.
1998 was a key date for Greyrock. This was the year that they staged the tragic events at Columbine High and they launched an aggressive national campaign to misfits and losers and asked them if they could stomach another rampage, bringing “URUS HIGH” to the public eye.
The response they received was similar to the US Army recruiting phenomenon after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Every maniac in the country wanted to have a network of security that they could call their own and now they had it. An army of brown-shirts at the disposal of the highest bidder.
Getting to be a contractor for the Pentagon and other US organizations proved to be a pain at first, but well worth it after a few dinners, lots of hookers, coke and other bribes got him into the right circles.
Other events were critical to the growth and profitability of Greyrock, such as the bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen, but not many in the world would have been able to predict the meteoric increase in importance following 9/11.
For decades, the people behind the people in US power circles were keen on privatizing the entire US military bureaucracy. With 9/11, they had the opportunity to exponentially expand their profitability and authority by putting private companies in front of traditional peacekeeping forces.
And they could do it all without any public scrutiny because the laws passed on September 12, 2001 provided for extreme privacy in their actions.
Afghanistan was the drip that brought it on and Iraq became the flood.
Hundreds of billions of dollars were being spent on everything and anything related to destruction and reconstruction.
It was a bonanza for those that were ready.
And Greyrock was one of the largest companies reaping the benefits of their religious, political and military contacts.
By the end of 2001, a mere 20% of the forces in active duty belonged to private organizations. By the end of 2007, these numbers had completely reversed and the military was close to being completely privatized.
This was extremely important because these people were not held to the same international scrutiny as members of an official government army, allowing mercenaries to act in extremely inhumane ways without any repercussions.
It also allowed the US government to go on a drunken spend because they could get more money but they couldn’t get more recruits to the army.
In a really odd way, there was a sense of balance. Insane gun-nuts were employed at decent rates and could go around blasting holes in (innocent) Muslims in countries that most Americans couldn’t spell, even with the help of auto-correct. Republicans didn’t have to bring in the draft. Democrats didn’t have to worry about seeing kids come home in boxes wrapped in flags on the TV screen.
Other countries used the model too. According to the public record, Chile is fiercely opposed to action in Iraq, and yet there are several thousand Chileans employed by Greyrock as enforcers.
In time though, most Americans will be forced to ask the question: Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
“I hear always the admonishment of my friends,
Bolt her in, and constrain her!
But who will watch the watchmen?
The wife arranges accordingly, and begins with them.
Satire VI, Juvenal
“Greyrock is positioned to benefit from a number of international ‘incidents’ that require full-scale attention, sir,” King reported.
“Such as …?” Garamond asked, knowing what the answers would be because they were all very well planned years in advance.
There was a pause on the line and Garamond was reminded of an important protocol requirement and said outloud: “you are on speaker phone, but this is a bug-free room and I’m not using any recording devices.”
“Thank you, sir,” King said after a pause, “as you know sir, we’re very active in Iraq. We had a small set back a few days ago that hasn’t become public knowledge, but otherwise, we’re helping create and manage a number of situations. Our staff is up to about 25,000 regulars and growing. Our other core service is in Afghanistan, where we’ve also got several teams numbering ten to fifteen thousand. Katrina was a great boon for us, so we’re seeking out other natural disaster opportunities. Finally, we’ve gone into the business of protecting and training security forces in what I would call ‘-mid-friendly’ countries such as Nigeria and Sudan. As of a few weeks ago, we were averaging about 40,000 employees deployed year-to-date, billing various governments an average $1,000 per day per head.”
“Excellent. That works out to what …” Garamond said as he punched a couple of numbers into his calculator, “about $14.6 billion per year. Well done.”
King paused, knowing that it was best to leave the conversation and questions to his boss and principle investor.
“We’re going to take Greyrock public,” Garamond said into the speaker.
“I know what you’re thinking, but there’s a lot of talk about draft and we have to began plans to migrate our business to more stable activities.
“I understand sir,” Kind said, “what do you want me to do?”
“You have to bring these numbers down a little. With revenue like that, there will be a gale force wind of protest from all the liberals on Capitol Hill once they realize how much the world has been spending on this enterprise.
“Not a problem sir,” King said obediently.
“Excellent. The next time we meet, it will likely be on the Exchange floor, launching our new IPO.”
(Note: “Excited Delirium” is a work of fiction. Any person, place or thing depicted in this work of fiction is also a work of fiction. Any relation of these subjects or characters to real locations, people or things are an unintentional coincidence.)
Excited Delirium by Liam Young is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License.
Based on a work at www.exciteddelirium.ca.