Daddy Mark Is Not Happy

You Romanians are all so naughty!!

I was trolling around looking for something else when I found this article (in Romanian). It says it is quoting a Mediafax article but I can’t seem to find the original. Nonetheless, here’s what the Emissary from Our Great Father in Washington had to say:

“Putem să avem cei mai buni procurori, cei mai buni poliţişti, dar fără o justiţie care să poată să rezolve aceste cazuri corect şi rapid nu se întâmplă nimic”, a spus Mark Gitenstein la o conferință privind reforma sistemului judiciar, organizată la București de Departamentul american de Stat.

Since our Great Father’s Emissary does not speak Romanian and the text is missing from the American Embassy’s website, I’ll re-translate back into English what he (probably) said:

“We could have the best prosecutors and the best police officers but without a judicial system that can resolve cases quickly and fairly, nothing will happen,” said Mark Gitenstein [the American Ambassador to Romania] at a conference on reforming the judicial system being held in Bucharest, organized by the American State Department.

I tell you what, he sure has some balls to get away with that. Obviously Romania’s justice system has some serious flaws, there’s no doubt about it. But coming from Gitenstein is a little rich.

Let’s review Mr. Gitenstein’s own history, shall we? First he was a lawyer working for the government and then he became a private lobbyist for a number of major firms, including military weapons contractors. I won’t even get into who is profiting from the “anti-missile shield” being installed in Romania as we speak (also warmly supported by Gitenstein). Let’s focus on the legal stuff:

From 1999 to 2001, Gitenstein reportedly lobbied on behalf of Boeing, Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics and several other defense contractors to get Congress to amend the False Claims Act, a law first passed during President Abraham Lincoln’s administration that provides rewards to public employees for information exposing fraud by government contractors. The Justice Deaprtment stated that between 1986 and 2007 the Act was responsible for recovering $20 billion for fraud. Gitenstein worked to weaken the Act.

This guy personally (and for profit) worked to weaken an act that reduced government fraud. Delightful.


[H]e also served as counsel to Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for Legal Reform, which successfully pushed to force almost all class action suits into the federal court system, and lobbied to add more business-friendly judges to state courts.

Yes, this is exactly what the Romanian judiciary needs to be like!

In fact, the sole reason Gitenstein didn’t get a job in the government again when Obama and Biden were elected in 2008 was because all of Gitenstein’s business lobbying. In other words, they didn’t trust him to work as a government lawyer any more because he was likely to show too much favoritism to his former business clients. But because he was an influential friend of Vice President Biden (Gitenstein used to work for him), he got handed a consolation prize of being the ambassador to Romania.

And what did Gitenstein do when he got to Romania? Well you might be interested to read this interview in Q Magazine with Silviu Craescu, a Romanian who used to work for Gitenstein directly:

Silviu Craescu reveals, exclusively for Q Magazine, the way Romanians are being treated and exploited inside the United States Ambassador’s residence, how an university graduate is being commanded to wash the silverware or how he should watch the Ambassador’s dog, and not lastly, how Mark Gitenstein was involved in the presidential campaign in 2009.

Romanian version of the same interview is here. Basically this poor guy was given a ton of unpaid amount of work to do and when he complained about it he got fired:

One day, I received orders from the Ambassador and his wife, through Marian Bajenaru, employed as a footman at home, who was on vacation (in fact, spending some free time awarded by the Ambassador’s wife without mentioning this in the clocking, but paid in U.S. taxpayer money), who said that he had received an email with their wishes, about how to wash the silverware in the whole house and how to do the cleaning, including myself. I have this email to confirm my statement.

I washed silver-plates the best way I could, although this was not my task and without any assistance and without being instructed in advance on what particular materials or non-toxic solutions to use in order to clean and polish the silver; and still wasn’t good enough. When they arrived, the Ambassador and his wife complained that I did not polished the silver properly.

I stayed after night several times, at the residence, at the express request of the Ambassador when they left Bucharest, only to guard his dog, because it didn’t like to sleep alone.

So nice that they’re cheating the American taxpayers. But wait, otherwise this is just Gitenstein and his wife being pompous assholes (no surprise there) but it’s not exactly illegal. Oh wait!

Q: It is a practice to use the Romanians for various professional activities in the residence, without having a legal form of work, but to be paid on the black market?

Silviu Craescu: Yes. It is a very common practice and a very profitable one. Sure I can give you examples and support those assertions with evidence. This happened also during the other Ambassadors” representatives, beside Mr. Gitenstein, and it is a common practice in the U.S. diplomatic mission in Bucharest, where most officers and employees of the Embassy use Romanian people, both in private or official representation activities, without proving them with employment contracts recorded at the Territorial Labor Inspectorate-Bucharest. In this way, the Romanian state is robbed of taxes that aren’t being paid and the U.S. Embassy, through its head, encourages illegal employment in Romania.

Not often you can commit labor fraud in two countries at once :)

Read the entire interview for all the disgusting details. But of course the Americans say it’s all one big lie and the guy is just making the entire thing up after working there for years and getting a personal letter from Joe Biden (Gitenstein’s boss) about what a great job he (Craescu) was doing. Yep. All a lie.

Well all that set aside, no matter how grossly corrupt and terrible and awful the Romanian judicial system is, at least one thing positive can be said about it. No matter how many bribes, no matter how much corruption, no matter how slowly it moves, no matter how inefficient it is, at least no (post-1989 revolution) Romanian judge has ever ordered the execution of an innocent person.

Of course you’ll never hear a word of contradiction or critical analysis of Mark “My Dog Gets Lonely” Gitenstein’s lectures on how Romanians should operate their own country from anyone in power in this country because the entire government is beholden to the United States. Remember, he only scolds us because it’s for our own good, like all Daddies have to do sometimes.

10 thoughts on “Daddy Mark Is Not Happy

  1. I think my comment was not approved, so I’ll try again, this time with more civility :) As much as I agree, at least from what I’ve read, that His Excellency Mr. Mark Gitenstein has less than a stellar character, much of the post against his person is based on the claims of one Silviu Craescu. Having read the article about Silviu Craescu in the link you provided, I have come to the conclusion that Silviu is not a source to be trusted, especially given his agenda. Better? :)


    1. oops, it might have been that my initial comment didn’t go through because of internet problems rather than censorship :) it was basically a rant against Silviu Craescu and his spoiled entitled brat mentality; so I apologize if I thought my comment was not approved by the moderator, I think it was an issue on my end…


  2. I hate to respond because you took the time to write such a lengthy and informative comment.

    Of course there are other ways to see it! That’s why I re-opened the comment section.

    I’m sure Gitenstein has done lots of good things (however that’s defined) for Romania because that’s his job. But it still remains true that he’s a guy who once got paid to encourage government fraud and the American judiciary system is a travesty. And Gitenstein is in no position to lecture anyone on judicial ethics or organization. The guy is a scumbag and so is his former boss, Senator Biden. One tiny example of this is here:

    As for him being “Romanian” because some ancestor lived in Botosani in 1890, well then I’m French or Native American or half a dozen other nationalities. If you go back far enough we’re all kinds of mixed up people. It’d be pretty weird for me to go around saying I’m a Cherokee Indian or some shit because one of my far off ancestors might’ve been one, don’t you think?

    As for military bases being “good” for Romania, however much cash and jobs they bring, I’ll reserve my full reply for an entire article on the subject. Fair enough?


  3. Sam, I’d like ask if there isn’t another way to see things?

    According to online news sources, the U.S. Missle Shield at
    the village of Deveselu (population 3,300) will occupy space
    at an airport which has been abandoned for ten years, which
    will require an investment worth 400-million dollars in order
    to be operational again. An “American district” will be built
    for housing from 200 to 500 troops from the U.S. who will be
    stationed there by 2015, according to mayor Gheorghe Bece.

    Nicolae Nutescu, a 53-year-old local farmer, said “This place
    used to be a lot better when the military base was operational.
    Now all we have is agriculture. I hope that the village will
    be bustling with activity again” when the U.S. troops arrive.

    Considering the inevitable number of added jobs for Romanians
    who live in that area, might not this development be seen as
    a “win” for Romania?

    It doesn’t seem accurate to imply that Ambassador Gitenstein
    has no background qualifying him for his appointment there.
    Although he grew up in a region of the U.S. that offers no
    opportunities for learning to speak the Romanian language,
    he is a descendent of Romanians from Botosani, now a major
    city northwest of Iasi. Since arriving in Bucharest he has
    shared his extensive experience in the American legal and
    political system with university students who are interested
    in the U.S. Constitution and judicial system, and in ridding
    Romania of endemic corruption. This sort of teaching goes
    beyond the normal duties of a foreign ambassador, but seems
    especially appropriate to the situation in Romania, where
    ambitious young people are at the point of deciding either
    to seek careers abroad or to remain and pursue an improved
    and more just society at home.

    On the U.S. Embassy’s website you can find a long list of
    initiatives that Amnassador Gitenstein and his wife Libby
    have undertaken since their arrival on behalf of Romania,
    including the ‘Restart Romania’ competition, the push to
    get road-building and other infrastructure project moving,
    support for increased tourism and financial investments,
    promoting environmental and “human rights” efforts, and
    in fighting Romania’s reputation as a “cybercrime” capital
    by bringing over top U.S. law enforcement officials, such
    as FBI Director Mueller, who could offer technical advice
    and equipment for combating the regretable situation we
    have read about in towns like Ramnicu Valcea. Refer to
    the January 2011 Wired Magazine story here:

    Maybe Ambassador Gitenstein’s career-long association with
    the U.S. Vice-President is actually an advantage to Romania
    in facilitating some pretty special treatment as far as
    Foggy Bottom’s typical practices go?


  4. Why does this not surprise me? The “good ‘ole boy” network in US politics is exactly why I don’t vote anymore. The apparent arrogance of the ambassador god is the reason I always say i am from Dallas when asked in Buc. At least Dallas gets a more favourable reaction then American. If someone then asks if I am American I say, “I am Texan.” Of course Texas did give the world George ‘Chuckles the Clown’ Bush but hey, we aren’t perfect:D


  5. I’m really tired of the USA doing whatever they want all over the world and I’m extremely annoyed about them doing stuff like this with one of its supposed valued and trusted allies, always claiming the moral high ground.

    We are in freaking Europe and part of the European Union, we don’t need some country from another continent to dictate to us what we should do and how we should do it.
    If they should want to be our friends then they should treat us as such. No less no more.

    I’m really amazed and disappointed of how low the USA has sunk in recent decades.


    On a side note, Sam, I think you should adress the subject of the death penalty in Romania, because I fear an enormous number of Romanians would support it if they would have to vote on it. As evidenced by the disccsussion caused by the recent killing sprea at a hair dressers in Bucahrest.
    It really makes my blood boil when I’m confronted with such stupidy and ignorance.

    Here are some articles on the matter. The comments on them are edifying


    1. Hungary is also considering re-instating the death penalty. I won’t get into why this is a stupid idea but I do believe it is actually forbidden under EU law or some kind of treaties. I’d have to do research to find out more info but at the moment I don’t think it’s likely to happen.


      1. From wikipededia: ttp://

        “The death penalty has been abolished in nearly all European countries (50 out of 51[1]). The moratorium on the death penalty is enshrined in both the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (EU) and the European Convention on Human Rights of the Council of Europe, and thus considered a central value. Of all modern European countries, San Marino and Portugal were the first to abolish and only Belarus still practices capital punishment. In 2012, Latvia became the last EU Member State to abolish capital punishment in war time.[2]”

        So yeah it would be pretty darn stupid to reinstate it.


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