Nancy, ‘Queen of Stonks:’ Why Pelosi Belongs in Prison

by Russell Dobular

SEC Rule 10b-5 prohibits corporate officers and directors or other insider employees from using confidential corporate information to reap a profit (or avoid a loss) by trading in the Company’s stock. This rule also prohibits “tipping” of confidential corporate information to third parties.

An “insider” is an officer, director, 10% stockholder and anyone who possesses inside information because of his or her relationship with the Company or with an officer, director or principal stockholder of the Company. Rule 10b-5’s application goes considerably beyond just officers, directors and principal stockholders. This rule also covers any employee who has obtained material non-public corporate information, as well as any person who has received a “tip” from an Insider of the Company concerning information about the Company that is material and nonpublic, and trades (i.e. purchase or sells) the Company’s stock or other securities.

This policy also applies to your family members who reside with you, anyone else who lives in your household, and family members who do not live in your household but whose securities transactions are directed by you or are subject to your influence or control, as well as trusts or other entities for which you make investment decisions.”

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Based on all of the above, Nancy and Paul Pelosi should be getting fitted for orange jumpsuits right about now. That’s what would be happening to you or me, or Martha Stewart, were our stock picks to repeatedly, mysteriously, outperform the S&P 500, and leave the annual returns of professional money managers in the dust. Once may be a lucky pick. Twice even. A good year here and there is plausible. But the Pelosis’ “good luck” isn’t confined to a particular company, transaction, or calendar year. Trade after trade and year after year they bury the smartest minds on Wall Street. There is no reasonable explanation for this feat other than the proposition that they are trading on inside information. And really, how could they not be? For a member of Congress, much less the Speaker of the House, to trade stock is like a referee making a bet on the game that they’re about to call. Let’s go back to the summer of 2021 for an example:

In May and June, investment manager and spouse to the Speaker, Paul Pelosi (this is how they work the scam-Nancy doesn’t execute the trades), purchased $11M worth of risky call options in Amazon, Apple, Alphabet (Google), and Nvidia. These types of trades only pay off if the stock reaches a “strike price,” by a certain date. If the target price isn’t met in the proper time frame, the options expire worthless. 

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Adding to the risk was the fact that the House was at the very same moment creating anti-trust legislation that would better regulate large tech companies.  In the end, a few weak proposals were drafted and passed by the House Judiciary Committee, none of which were seen as a major threat to Silicon Valley, and that weren’t brought up for a full vote in the House in any case. All of the stocks Pelosi had purchased went through the roof, partly in response to the toothless proposals.

While this doesn’t constitute hard proof of insider trading (the Pelosi’s are far too wily to do anything that wouldn’t meet the “reasonable doubt” standard in a court of law), the sheer mathematical impossibility of their annual gains simply can not be explained any other way. 

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How good are the Pelosi’s’ trades?  In 2021, they made a 69% gain on their investments. Warren Buffet, widely considered one of the greatest investors of all time, did 20%. So did George Soros, a man so canny that he is often credited with causing a collapse in the British pound in the Fall of 1992 by heavily shorting the currency. Peter Lynch, the Wall Street legend who took Fidelity’s Magellan fund from $18M to $13B between 1977-1990, did 26%. And yet the Pelosi’s left them all in the dust, more than doubling Lynch’s returns, and more than tripling Buffet’s and Soros’.  

Funny side note, the Twitter account “Nancy Pelosi Portfolio Tracker,” which produced the below graphic, was shut down immediately upon Jack Dorsey’s exit as CEO.

This was after they had received a “cease and desist order from a lawyer representing someone high up in the [Political] office.”  Apparently having her corruption laid out for all the world to see on Twitter was putting a bug up the ass of the reigning Queen of Stonks. But as the erstwhile Speaker herself has trenchantly observed, “We are a free market economy.”   

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In that spirit, a plethora of Tik Tok groups and websites have sprung up to track the financial maneuvers of the Speaker and her husband, so that retail investors can pile into trades that are widely perceived as being among that rarest of beasts in the world of stock picking: a sure thing.  Time and again we have seen that any stock the Pelosi’s buy is almost guaranteed to outperform the broader market. 

As Christopher Josephs, co-founder of the social media investing app Iris, which helps users track the investments of celebrities, friends, and political figures, told Yahoo Finance Live, “The reason why Speaker Pelosi became so popular was because every trade she was making inevitably turned out to be such a long-term winner.  Albeit the entire market has gone up significantly, but these are very, very risky bets because she’s been buying LEAP options as opposed to just stock…It started early in 2020 with Crowdstrike (CRWD), and then she bought Tesla (TSLA), and there were some laws passed pro for the EV market…Then she bought Google (GOOGGOOGL) and then the laws came out that they weren’t going to go after Big Tech.”  Each of the stocks Josephs mentions were up 20-30%, as of October, 2021. 

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But if you, dear peasant, want to grab some crumbs off the Congressional Corruption table by trading like Nancy does, you may not have a lot of time left to get in on the action.  After Business Insider revealed that 54 Congressional lawmakers and 182 senior staffers were in violation of the STOCK ACT, which requires the reporting of all stock trades made by members of Congress and their staffs, momentum began to build for broad reform. 

Moderate Senator Jon Ossoff, of all people, seemingly in response to the Speaker’s contention that members of Congress should be allowed to trade unfettered because capitalism or some shit, has introduced a bill that would ban members of Congress from trading individual stocks, with the penalty being total forfeiture of their Congressional salaries.  Senator Josh Hawley is about to introduce a competing bill, which would fine lawmakers their total profits if they are caught trading. Given the kind of money the Pelosi’s and others are making off their insider moves, Hawley’s penalty is probably the one with the most teeth.  Nancy spends more on gourmet ice cream than her Congressional salary can cover.

What neither proposal includes is jail time.  ‘Cause jail is only for the little people.  And occasionally Martha Stewart.

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132. The Neil Young/Joe Rogan Spotify Turf War of 2022 (Or, The Vindaloo Was Too Spicy) Due Dissidence

Smash-and-Grab Looters are Exploiting Opportunity, Just Like Congress’ Stock Traders

by James Neggie

“My dad was a… petty thief.  Never could hold down a job, so, he just robbed.  Convenience stores, shops, small-time stuff.  One time, he sat me down, he told me something I never forgot.  He said, ‘Everyone steals.  That’s how it works. You think people out there are getting exactly what they deserve?  No. They’re getting paid over or under, but someone in the chain always gets bamboozled.’ I steal, Son, but I don’t get caught.  That’s my contract with society. Now if you can *catch* me stealing, then I’ll go to jail, but if you can’t, then I’ve earned the money.”

Mr. Robot, 2015


“Behind every great fortune there is a crime.” 

Balzac (as cited by Mario Puzo in The Godfather)


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This holiday season, habitual cable news viewers couldn’t escape the corporate media’s steady supply of consternation, pearl-clutching, handwringing, and in some cases outright hysteria, about the wave of organized smash-and-grab robberies befalling high-end retailers this holiday season. Pundits on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News were of course quick to offer explanations from their partisan grab bags: unregulated big tech allowing the robbers to coordinate online, liberal D.A.s refusing to prosecute crime or impose bail, the erosion of the cohesive civil society, or the grisly endgame of the war on Christmas. Much of the hue and cry raised boil down to one overarching concern: if designer scarves and Louis Vuitton handbags aren’t safe from masked hordes of marauding looters then what is?

Nancy Pelosi, under pressure to denounce the robberies, called them “absolutely outrageous” and a product of an “attitude of lawlessness” that “springs from I don’t know where.” She went on to assert that “we cannot have that lawlessness become the norm.” 

Hmm. Where could such an “attitude of lawlessness” have come from? Well Madame Speaker, perhaps it has come from the very top.

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As has been recently reported, some 52 members of Congress have failed to properly report their financial trades as mandated by the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act of 2012, also known as the STOCK Act. When Pelosi was asked whether it was ethical for members of Congress to buy and trade individual stocks, she defended the practice by stating “We’re a free-market economy … they should be able to participate in that.” 

Very well.  But there is more than one way of “participating” in the free market.  One way is using privileged inside information you gain from public service to garner an unfair advantage against competing investors, and another is to smash open plate glass windows and grab merchandise.

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When observers pointed out to defenders of the neoliberal status quo over the past three decades that wealth imbalance has created an unfair playing field in which small players can’t compete, they were simply dismissed for failing to see the “big picture.” For these Masters of the Universe, the global capitalist stage was some sort of primordial savanna where strong and fit firms could vanquish and feast upon the weak, and in turn create better services and lower prices for all consumers.  But when masked marauders employ tactical logic straight out of a real-life savanna (property belongs to those who take it), they are aghast.

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In language that neoliberal defenders of capitalist enterprise will be familiar with, the perpetrators of the flash mob, smash-and-grab robberies are all independent economic entities acting in their own self-interest. So, what’s the problem? Every one of these smash-and grab looters can be considered their own personal corporation. As such, they are effectively CEOs. Well then, these CEOs have a fiduciary responsibility to their various stakeholders (themselves, family, landlords, creditors, and student loan servicers) to seek out, create, and exploit opportunities presented to them.

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Now, the owners and shareholders of the retailers in question might object to the “aggressiveness” of these CEOs.  They are certainly guilty of running afoul of various “regulations” etc. – and please, just for a moment here let us interrogate why it is that when rich people break a law they are said to merely have “run afoul of regulations,” and when a poor person does, they have broken the law? Of course, the answer is that regulatory violations are usually met with a fine or extremely brief custodial sentence, while crimes could require lengthy imprisonment.

Insider trading isn’t simply “breaking a regulation,” it’s committing a crime.  But if members of Congress are caught, the worst consequence they can expect is a $200 fine. Struggling hand-to-mouth Uber drivers are fined more if they run a red-light in Manhattan. 

In general, white-collar criminals have never, and will never, see the inside of a jail cell. The masked marauders of this past holiday season, on the other hand, were all risking their freedom. But their economic circumstances are so dire that stealing a $7,000 handbag that can be resold online seemed to them a risk worth taking. Such is the aftermath of so eroding the economic prospects of people in their prime earning years.

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In reality, we should be applauding their entrepreneurial initiative. Their elan.  Their acquisitional pluck! These smash-and-grabbers aren’t looking for a handout. They aren’t waiting for the government to mail them each a Hermès scarf – they are going out and creating opportunities for themselves.  

Incidentally, wasn’t it “opportunities” that politicians and pundits promised working people corporate interests would provide them given free rein? Perhaps the flash mob robbers were simply tired of waiting for the balancing arm of the free market to raise their boats.

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Those who carried out the recent spate of smash-and-grab robberies had a few advantages: their numbers, their desperation, and a pandemic which allowed them to be masked and disguised without attracting scrutiny. They leveraged these advantages to their own benefit. In return, they create lower prices for consumers of high-end designer merchandise by selling their aggressively acquired goods on eBay. They create demand for private security companies and security guards while also providing work for plate glass window manufacturers and installers.  

Job creation and lower prices?  It looks like the next generation of American entrepreneurs have arrived.

If you enjoyed this content, please consider helping us create more of it by becoming a member at Patreon or Substack. We also accept secure donations via PayPal. Thank you for supporting independent media.

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132. The Neil Young/Joe Rogan Spotify Turf War of 2022 (Or, The Vindaloo Was Too Spicy) Due Dissidence

Photos: Ashraf Ghani, Concord Police Dept.