Economist: Thomas Sowell

Economist, People

Thomas Sowell  (/soʊl/; born June 30, 1930) is an American economist, social theorist, and senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution.

Born in North Carolina, Sowell grew up in Harlem, New York. He dropped out of Stuyvesant High School and served in the Marine Corps during the Korean War. Upon returning to the United States, Sowell enrolled at Harvard University, graduating magna cum laude[1] in 1958. He received a master’s degree from Columbia University in 1959, and earned his doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago in 1968. Continue reading “Economist: Thomas Sowell”

Subject: Maria Butina

People, Subject of Interest

Mariia Valeryevna Butina  (Russian: Мария Валерьевна Бутина, sometimes transliterated as Maria Butina or Mariya Butina; born November 10, 1988) is a Russian who was convicted in 2018 of acting as an unregistered foreign agent of Russia within the United States.

Beginning in 2011, she worked as an assistant for Aleksandr Torshin, a former member of the Federation Council, a member of Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party, and a deputy governor of the Central Bank of Russia. In this role, she worked to infiltrate conservative groups in the US, including the National Rifle Association, as part of an effort to promote Russian interests in the 2016 United States presidential election. Continue reading “Subject: Maria Butina”

Entrepreneur: Peter Thiel

entrepreneur, People

Peter Andreas Thiel  (/tiːl/; born 11 October 1967) is a German-American billionaire entrepreneur and venture capitalist. A co-founder of PayPal, Palantir Technologies, and Founders Fund, he was the first outside investor in Facebook. He was ranked No. 4 on the Forbes Midas List of 2014, with a net worth of $2.2 billion, and No. 391 on the Forbes 400 in 2020, with a net worth of $2.1 billion. In 2016, Thiel confirmed that he had funded Hulk Hogan in the Bollea v. Gawker lawsuit because Gawker had previously outed him as gay. The lawsuit eventually bankrupted Gawker.

Born in Frankfurt, he moved with his family to the United States as an infant. He spent a portion of his upbringing in Southern Africa before the family settled in California in 1977. He studied philosophy at Stanford University, graduating with a B.A. in 1989. He then earned his J.D. from Stanford Law School in 1992. Continue reading “Entrepreneur: Peter Thiel”

Entrepreneur: Patrick M. Byrne

entrepreneur, People

Patrick M. Byrne  (born November 29, 1962) is an American entrepreneur who was the CEO of Overstock.com. In 1999, Byrne launched Overstock.com after leading two smaller companies, including one owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway. In 2002, Byrne took Overstock.com public. Since its initial public offering, Overstock.com has increased revenue to almost $1.8 billion, while achieving profitability in 2009.

In 2005, Byrne became known for his campaign against illegal naked short selling. Byrne and securities regulators maintained illegal naked shorting had been used in violation of securities law to distort prices of public companies’ stock. Under his direction, Overstock.com filed two lawsuits alleging improper acts by Wall Street firms, a hedge fund, and an independent research firm.[5] In each case the defendants settled with Overstock.com out of court. Continue reading “Entrepreneur: Patrick M. Byrne”

Subject: Peter Strzok

People, Subject of Interest

Peter Paul Strzok II  (/ˈbluːmənθɔːl/; born February 13, 1946) (/strʌk/, like struck; born March 7, 1970) is a former United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agent. Strzok was the Chief of the Counterespionage Section and led the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal email server.

Strzok rose to become a Deputy Assistant Director (one of several) of the Counterintelligence Division, the second-highest position in that division. He also led the FBI’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections. Continue reading “Subject: Peter Strzok”