THOMPSON: He made an awful lot of money.
BERNSTEIN: It's not a trick to make an awful lot of money…if all you want is to make a lot of money…That kind of fellow you can fool every day in the week - and twice on Sundays!”
Time Magazine described "Tino" this way; “His five-foot-four-inch frame was burdened by 240 fleshy pounds, making him seem wider than he was tall. Thin wire-rimmed black spectacles perched precariously on his round face…His rumpled (ready-made) suits usually looked as if he had slept in them…(He) drove around in a large Cadillac and always ostentatiously carried a thick wad of bills.”
Norman C. Miller, for the Saturday Eveniing Post, tried to explain Anthony’s charm as a con man. “There is something contagious about (his) guileless, open-handed manner….It infected people far outside of his usual social circles. A variety of big businessmen were happy to have a part in Tino’s expansion plans… It pleased him to distribute largess among his retinue of lieutenants and hangers-on, often in the form of cash”. .”(Miller; http://www.mafianj.com/saladoil/tino1.shtml). In Anthony’s own words, he was “...a man born and raised in the poor section of New York, (who) rises to the point where he runs ten, fifteen businesses or plants around the country.”
While still in his twenties Anthony had “…an exceptional ability in knowing how to process hogs. Some of my methods,” he claimed, “cut the cost of processing hogs enormously.” Anthony opened his own meat packing firm in the midst of the Great Depression and turned a $100,000 profit the very first year. By the end of WWII, like much of the rest of America, Anthony had a pile of capital ready to invest.
He bought controlling interest in Adolf Gobel Company, a deli and sundry wholesaler, and by 1953 he was large enough to be charged by the Federal government with selling them two million pounds of un-inspected meat. Anthony paid the fines and took Gobel into chapter 11, bankruptcy.
How could Anthony afford to pay his employees such salaries? Because the wizards running American Express had given their customer, Anthony De Angelis, a $3.7 million credit line. And once he had those receipts with that most hallowed of Corporate names in his hand, Anthony was bankable; he had become part of that amoral world of corporate capitalism, where success is the ultimate gauge of moral superiority and can be purchased on margin.
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