Saturday, July 4, 2015

In the Spirit of Charles Stillman, We Present IBC's Fred Rusteberg, Brownsville Opportunist

In the pole position for the race to develop the FM 550 industrial corridor and to reap short-term profits by scattering polluting liquefied natural gas plants from the the Port of Brownsville to the city limits of Port Isabel is IBC's congenial president, Fred Rusteberg.

While my eleven year old checks read International Bank of Commerce, Rusteberg's IBC is not actually an international bank.  It does not even have any branches in Mexico, let alone any other country.  It is essentially a Texas outfit with two small branches in Oklahoma. This reality may have spurred the bank's name change to International Bancshares Corporation.  The corporation's website refers to "generations" of depositors in Mexico and "relationships with prominent correspondent banks in Mexico." Read into that what you will.

If IBC is the financial engine for Rusteberg's ambition, United Brownsville, a behind-the-scenes, unelected, but actually Brownsville's real City Commission, once declared as "informal," by City Attorney Mark Sossi, not bound by requirements of the Public Information Act, is the control mechanism used by Rusteberg and his cronies, Carlos Marin and Juliet Garcia, to organize and profit from industrial development in the region.

Rusteberg, Marin and Garcia couldn't ask for a more pliant, cooperative and subservient City Commission.  At a City Commission meeting March 4, 2014, the commission yielded control of the industrial corridor to Imagina Matamoros (a copycat of United Brownsville), the damn City of Harlingen and, of course, United Brownsville in a resolution:

"Consideration and ACTION on Resolution Number 2014-034, in support of the creation of a Bioned(sic) Coordinating Board to be made up by Equal Representation from United Brownsville, Imagina Matamoros, and the City of Harlingen in order to promote and plan the development of the Bi-Ned Zone. (Commissioners D. Portillo/R. Gowen)"


  1. Who cares, we have Space XXX

  2. Maybe Boeing will move from Seattle to Boca Chica?

  3. What is LNG anyway? Write a story that will explain it.

  4. And, Freddy Rusteberg live in Rancho, not Brownsville. Freddy and Julie Garcia (as they were known as teens) are part of an elite group (inclucding Da' Mayor Tony Martinez) who believe they know what's good for the city (and good for them), but they don't want the public to interfere or question their actions. These elitists most of all take care of themselves and their friends....they don't look out for the city and its citizens.
    P.S. for "Anonymous" at 3:35......what rock have you been hiding under? LNG has been an issue for months. If you have a computer to write here....try using the computer and not waste Jim's time repeating the issue.

    IBC has 220 locations through out Texas and Oklahoma.
    International Bank of Commerce is just a name and by the way IBC does much business with Mexican clients.
    I am not privy to the information that you are, although I do know that LNG is a much cleaner burning fuel that crude oil is and we have plenty of it right here in the United States.
    I am not trying to be cavalier but I am wondering what you consider short term gains. 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 years just what is short term to you.

  6. Most of the info you request is available online. As to short-term aspect of the profitability of LNG plants, consider that the primary current customers are China and Russia, both of whom are projected to have their own LNG plants within five years. . Thus, short-term.

  7. Actually, South Korea, Japan, and Eastern European Countries including the Ukrane will be the primary takers of LNG that would ship out of our area. They want to have consistant supplies and not depend on Russia or China. Russia has in the past cut off the valve on the pipeline that supplies the Eastern European countries with natural gas causing them problems and shortages in industry, and residentual use.

  8. "I do know that LNG is a much cleaner burning fuel than crude oil, etc."

    That's what confuses people. Natural gas does burn cleanly, but the proposed five plants will not burn natural gas, but compress it into a liquid. That process takes an enormous amount of energy and releases mercury, hydrogen sulfide, helium, carbon dioxide, hydrocarbons into the atmosphere as well as dump millions of gallons of heated effluent each day into one of the healthiest shallow-water bays in the world.

    This is a very short-sighted, short-term, but highly profitable industry for a few, but certainly not in the best interest of future Cameron County generations.

  9. [While my eleven year old checks read International Bank of Commerce, Rusteberg's IBC is not actually an international bank.]

    Read and weep.

  10. Speaking of Stillman; the Stillman "Shack" at Linear Park continues to grow larger and larger and is becoming an eyesore just with its "new" size. We started with a tiny "shack" and have turned it into something it never was.

    1. Though I agree with you on the park not being a very good location for the house, I will have to disagree on what the house is becoming. The house is actually being restored as close as possible to its original structure in the 1850's, which had a wraparound porch all around it. You can see an 1850's picture at:
      Don't believe what you hear, believe what has been researched and has evidence to back it up.
      Not KBRO
      Just a guy who likes Brownsville History.

  11. Jim I know that you are well meaning and I feel sure that you are well read on the pros and cons of LNG, although you also must know that the life blood of modern civilization is reliable, affordable energy. Texas is the leader of wind energy in the United States and if was not so highly subsidized it would never be able to stand on it's own.

    From wellhead to end user LNG can be done with a lower carbon footprint than any other fossil fuel.

    The alternative to not using all of the ways possible to provide energy to a growing population is much scarier than some stinky LNG plants on HW 48.

    BTW the paper work is done, the LNG plants are coming.

  12. E.F. Muhammad MartinezJuly 15, 2015 at 5:40 AM

    “Texas is a huge gateway for illegal trafficking of drugs, weapons, people and money,” said Johnny Joe Garza, a veteran journalist in the state of Coahuila, which like four other Mexican states, borders Texas, and is long a haven for criminals, both from the underworld and public office. “The Mexican border states have a great economic, social and cultural integration, but not only for legal activities. For years, we have learned about Mexican drug lords, politicians and businessmen laundering money, seeking shelter in Texas.”

    The latest example came last month when former Tamaulipas Gov. Eugenio Hernandez Flores and his brother-in-law, Oscar Gomez Guerra, were indicted by the U.S. government, charged with conspiring to launder money. The government wants to collect up to $30 million that includes properties in McAllen and Austin.

    “Both Texas and Mexico benefit from these illegal activities that involve billions of dollars,” said Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera, chair of the government department at the University of Texas at Brownsville.

    For years, Guzman has tried to control the Texas border between Ciudad Juarez-El Paso and Laredo-Nuevo Laredo, in some regions making more gains than others, but leaving a trail of bodies along the way. In Nuevo Laredo, he took on the paramilitary group known as the Zetas. In Ciudad Juarez he took the fight to his former associates, the Juarez cartel.

    The results: thousands killed.

    - E.F. Muhammad Martinez
    Tu Servidor



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