“My father is a despicable man.”
For the eminent scientist, the structures that make up the triune brain developed at different times in evolution. Such structures differ, as well as use markedly different amounts of neurochemicals.
The first formation of a brain structure is what MacLean calls the reptilian brain or neural chassis: it holds the fundamental mechanisms of self-preservation and reproduction, including the heartbeat, breathing, and blood circulation; automatic processes in our organisms, over which –practically- we do not have much interference. The reptilian cerebrum formed hundreds of millions of years ago. Wrapping this neural chassis, we find the limbic system or the second brain that -estimated- has developed 150 million years ago and that we share -in its completeness- only with other mammals. Finally, covering this system, we find the neocortex, which in dolphins, whales, and human beings, is more substantial and sophisticated. Studies indicate that the neocortex would have appeared tens of millions of years ago. However, the acceleration of its development occurred with the emergence of the human being.
As I adopt the triune brain in all my books, I have nicknamed its structures: Saltie, related to the terrifying monster of the Australian seas; Callas, referring to the temperamental diva; and Neo, the main character of The Matrix.
Returning to the topic of this article, Eike Batista –like any self-respecting saltie- begins his billionaire path with a monkey business: a thermoelectric plant in Cuiabá that was –at the beginning of the millennium- powered by a branch of the Bolivia-Brazil Pipeline (GASBOL) that forked before the border. At the time, while Bolivian natural gas reached Brazil at US$3.50/MMBtu, at Eike's thermal plant it was US$1.50/MMBtu.
There is no surprise in the volume of money amassed in a very short time. Through it came political friends and with them came the blessings of Pasargadae, which is Brazil, since Cabral.
Charismatic, handsome, and married to a famous model, Eike began to create his paper empire: mining, oil, gas, logistics, energy, shipping, and mineral coal. The sixth richest man in the world had everything money could buy, and there was no shortage of money.
But the market has a strange habit of demanding results, and promises to deliver astronomical amounts of ore to China did not materialize; the promised billions of barrels did not fill with oil. That is when Eike Batista clings to the role, believing that the simple fact of announcing something will manifest itself in reality. Just like it happened with Kenneth Lay, Bernie Madoff, and Elizabeth Holmes.
And he would even have gotten another colossal loan from the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) if it were not for the entanglement he and all his friends found themselves in Petrolão (Portuguese for Big Oil) and Car-Wash. Eike Batista was arrested. Just like Kenneth Lay, Bernie Madoff, and Elizabeth Holmes.
Eike's problem at the time was that he thought nothing would ever happen to him. And always, each country and each government has an Eike of the moment. Sometimes the archetype even survives changes in government. But at some point, it is unmasked and falls.
Who is the Eike of this time? Find out by reading my book Risk Management in the Green Market.
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