Episode #20- Narco Mindset Podcast with Jorge Valdes Ph.D. - Deeper into the Mind of a Drug Dealer
Deeper into the Mind of a Drug Dealer
June 17, 2020
Host: Jorge Valdes Ph.D. - An Author, Speaker, Blogger, Podcaster, and You Tuber
Co-Host: Anthony Petrucci
EPISODE SHOW NOTES
In this episode, Dr. Valdes is asked by his Co-Host, Anthony Petrucci, what is real and what is fake about today’s shows on Narcos. Dr. Valdes explains that when he was the founding member of the group that became the Medellin Drug Cartel, things were a lot different, there was no violence, cocaine was for the rich and famous. Things drastically changed. Dr. Valdés makes a major announcement on how he has finally decided to be involved with Rakontur Studios, makers of famed series Cocaine Cowboys. Dr. Valdes explains the reason he has rejected so many offers from Hollywood and why he finally decided to work with Billy Corben and Alfred Spellman of Rakontur. Narco Mindset is an enlightening, informative, effortlessly entertaining podcast. It contains compelling RAW storytelling and intellectually honest talk about life. We will be delving into life challenges, life miracles, life recovery, and life opportunities. It illuminates a new generation on the power and the impact of a positive mindset.
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INTRO: Before we watched TV shows and movies on Narcos, and even before Pablo Escobar’s rise to fame, there was one man who was the ultimate Narco. He lived the Narco life of greed, money and power but found a way to reclaim his life, and use his astonishing experiences to empower others to live a life of hope, meaning and redemption. Welcome to the Narco Mindset podcast where Dr. Jorge Valdes shares his journey through life before and after the Medellín Drug Cartel. From torture and multiple prison sentences to how he refocused his life onto a path of principles learned as a Narco, It’s time to share that raw truth with you, right here on the Narco Mindset podcast with your host, Dr. Jorge Valdes.
Jorge: Today On the Narco Mindset podcast: When you get up in the morning tomorrow, look in the mirror, and ask yourself, “Do you really like who you have become?” That group was not a violent group. We were business people. We had office hours. He told me at the beginning, he says, “Son, if you’ve got to carry a gun to do business with somebody, you have no business doing business with that person.” Sadly enough, for whatever reason in my entire life, I’ve never looked at anything as I can’t do that or how am I going to do that. We didn’t fear death. We didn’t fear getting killed but we lived in turmoil every second. I want my children, when they finish reading anything that I do, I want them to say, “Wow, what a great God I serve that changed my father.” Don’t say you're not hurting anybody. Every choice we make in life has an equal consequence.
Thanks for joining us today. I am your host, Dr. Jorge Valdes. I am here with my co-host, Antony Petrucci on the Narco Mindset podcast. On the last episode, Anthony, we covered quite a bit of ground about morality, you know, what is right and what is wrong. I guess I just want to recap it with one simple saying: Do what I did. Maybe this is a good experiment. When you get up in the morning tomorrow, look in the mirror, and ask yourself do you really like what you're doing. Do you really like who you are? Do you really like who you have become? If you do, then, happy, enjoy the podcast. If you're not, begin to ask your questions, “Where can I change? Where can I create a different mindset?”
Then the most critical question is, as you look at certain subjects, whether you call them moral or not or maybe society does or maybe the Bible or the Quran or any holy book holds a moral, and you don’t, and you say, “I’m not hurting anyone. This is ridiculous. Only a religion puts all these restrictions on people.” Ask yourself this. If you like to go and go out with a lot of women and cheat on your wife, ask yourself if you’d like your daughter to go out with a lot of men and cheat on her husband. This works the same way, man. Anyway, but today, we’re going to get into a different subject. I’m really excited, Anthony, about what we’re about to talk about today. We’ll go off the handle off and on but I think today will be relevant to what’s going on in our streaming services.
Anthony: I agree and I think what affects so many people when it comes to looking at things around the Narco world is all these TV shows and Netflix series and movies that talk about different drug cartels. To a certain extent, you could even argue that some of these shows and movies glamorize it a little bit or try to show kind of this exciting world of the drug cartels because there's danger there. There’s an adventure. You don’t know what’s going to happen. There’s even a basic good versus bad kind of element and people sometimes even root for the bad guys. But I think it’s just an incredible opportunity to hear from you, Jorge, as one of the leaders of the group that came to be known as the Medellín Drug Cartel.
What is real on all these TV shows and movies about drug cartels and drug trafficking? What’s real, what is exaggerated, what’s fake? What could you say like, “No, you see these on the shows but it’s not real, that’s not how it worked.” Because, a lot of these shows, the timeline of the shows started like, I don’t know, the 80s or the last 20 or 30 years but you go back to the real early days, from the mid-seventies into the eighties. You know where it all started. So, I think the audience would just find it incredibly interesting as I do to find out what is real and what is not so real when it comes to all these shows and movies.
Jorge: That’s a great question and I would answer like in two parts. Again, first I’m going to share a disclaimer. If you look at the show, Narcos, today, which is extremely popular, at the beginning of the show, look at what it says. A lot of the stories have been sensationalized. A lot of what goes on or what went on or not is something that television makes it to be sensational, to be fun, to be interesting. With that said, let me go to what I think or what I believe to be a fact, to be the most authentic show there was. It’s a Spanish show called Pablo Escobar: Patron of Evil. It has subtitles. It’s on Netflix. I sat there and you know what, you mentioned rooting for the bad guy. I want to come clean. I sat there one night, all night long, till six o’clock in the morning, waiting to see what happened to the general that Pablo was going to kill because I knew what went on.
One of the interesting things is that all of the shows that you see, every single one of them, from Fix, Blow, to all of them, they all start in the ‘80s. The Medellín Cartel was a group ... well, it was a name that the American government gave to a bunch of different, not a bunch but four, five powerful groups in Medellín, that if they could identify them as a cartel, as one single group, then they could go ahead and make it a lot easier to get people hate them etcetera, etcetera. But the group that originally started that, of which I was a founding member in 1976, which at the beginning we were bringing 100 kilos a month, $70,000 a kilo in California. That group that would go on to give rise to the Pablo Escobar and to the different groups, that group was not a violent group.
We were business people. We had office hours. We wore suits every day. Nobody knew much about us because we didn’t live the life that you see in the sensationalized world. But on Pablo Escobar, he walks like he did, he talks like he did and the guy even looks like he did. If you look at that one, you’re going to get a good feel for what that world became.
Now, with all that said, remember that most of what we see is what? What is the source of what we see today? The source of what we see today comes from what the producers have read in the media and court records, etcetera because in reality, most of the characters are all dead. The ones that are major characters that might not be dead, like in the Mexican Cartel, I promise you, they’re not given television interviews. Most of the Mexican cartels are dead. Then what are you going to hear? You are going to hear how it was portrayed in court records. Well, again, in court records, you’ve got to be careful because somehow people get portrayed as a lot bigger than what they really were.
The truth of the matter is that a lot of what we find in today episodes, interesting enough, it was very, very different from the world that I started. In the world that I started, my godfather, I’ll never forget Manuel, who I think is one of the greatest persons I’ve ever met and one of the men that had the greatest influence in my life besides my father and Jesus, he told me in the beginning, he says, “Son, if you’ve got to carry a gun to do business with somebody, you have no business doing business with that person.” As we see ... well, that first group that hopefully in the near future, you’re going to learn about, but in that first group, none of us, I mean, we were all literally businessmen with a lot of different, very legitimate businesses.
It was actually if people talk about how cocaine built Miami, it was the beginning, the foundation of the first group because the second wave, what they called the second wave, the ‘81 and on, and the Pablo Escobar's and the Gacha and the Medellín Drug Cartel and then the Cali Cartel and then the different Mexican cartels. That group that came up was very, very different people. Most of them came from people that were, you know, like, take for example, El Chapo. I use him as almost a universal figure of your typical drug lord of that time. All good families, very religious because Mexican families are extremely religious but they're abused by society and they're poor. They find that the only way that they are going to get ahead or do anything is to join a life of crime. When you begin, you don’t stop. So, then, take El Chapo, he becomes very, very poor. I mean, he is very, very poor, becomes very, very powerful, ends up escaping out of jail, making a ton of money.
It is estimated that at one point in time, he was making a billion dollars a month and he had distribution in every country, every continent of the world, which is unbelievable because we did not have distribution ... at the beginning of the cartel or at the beginning of our group, our only distribution was the US, and we really wanted to be precise. 85% of our coke went to California then some went to Miami then Chicago then Detroit started getting some and then New York. That was about it. Again, remember, 100 kilos back then was the end of the world. When you think about 100 kilos, 7 million dollars. 7 million dollars, you're talking about when you could buy a house for $20,000.
But you know what is, I don’t know, interesting and sad for me at the same time, Anthony, is that I tell you, I know this dear friend and I made a comment one time, “How can people be so fascinated?” This guy is straight as an arrow with this whole Narco world, and he jumped up and like, “I’m the one that’s most fascinated by it.” I was like, it’s crazy because it’s so easy, the shows are so well done and they are so easy to catch yourself rooting for the bad guy. Listen, I was a bad guy. I hated everything I did in my life. I look back today and I wonder, how the hell did I have the guts at the age of 21 when Manuel approached me, and they wanted me to handle all the operation in the US at that time, and I made him a stupid offer thinking I’d get rid of them and that way, they won’t bug me anymore and I can just create the foreign bank accounts which I was making ... for a kid that was, the minimum wage was 85 cents an hour, and I was making $100,000 a month. I was rich.
I was fifty to a hundred. I was like a billionaire back then. I didn’t need no more and it wasn’t illegal. There were no money laundering laws. When he started asking me over and over, I thought I was so smart. I was just going to make him a stupid offer he could not refuse and simply say, “Okay, you want me to handle all operations, here’s the deal, buddy. You guys are four, I am five, that means we each now get 20 and what are you guys have to put for a load? About three, four hundred thousand dollars apiece? I don’t think I even have 500 bucks. If you want me to be part, I’m an equal partner and you put up my part.” Convinced. Convinced. I was just 20 years old, almost 21, convinced they were going to kick me in the butt, and that would be the end of it.
Well, that next day as I headed to the airport, they call me through Manuel’s office, my driver, and I’m like, “He’s going to say goodbye or give me some instructions on what to do.” At that time, I was running his business to build a banana company to import bananas from Colombia. I thought it was bananas. Anyway, he calls me in, he says, “Hey, we accept your offer.” I almost died on that airplane ride back to the United States. I was like, “What the hell does that mean? What the hell am I going to do now? I can’t show that I’m a coward. What does being head of all operations in the United States mean? What the hell does cocaine even look like? Who the freak do I sell this crap to? How do I collect the money? How do I get it to them? What do I do when I collect the money?”
One of the things that I teach in our program, Narco Mindset, is that sadly enough, for whatever reason in my entire life, I’ve never looked at anything as I can’t do that or how am I going to do that? I simply always say, “Well, if someone has done it, I can do it too, and I’ve just got to figure it out. I might have to work harder than anybody else but I will do it.” Well, in seven months, I had created this web where all of a sudden, within 10 months, we were bringing in 800-1,000 kilos a month. Think about it. Think about the amount of money that that is. Sometimes three 800-kilo loads in one month.
It was unbelievable, so it just escalated and it became so big but I went to the office every day. I wore a suit every day. I had a legitimate business. When I wanted to party, I’d go get on my jet and I’d go to California or I’d go to Vegas. I’d go where somebody did not know me and nobody knew who I was. I had no desire to do that. But even with all that and how horrible this world became that I was a part of, just the other night, I caught myself rooting for the damn bad guy. It was like here they are bringing in this big load, I don’t know how many tons, which, honestly, is a lie. It wasn’t that many tons brought in in one single load. That’s ridiculous. I’m not saying that it might not happen one time but it doesn’t happen that quickly unless these people are just so way surmounting my expectations because I know just what it takes to bring an airplane with 100 kilos.
All the intricacies, all the people you’ve got to pay off. Literally the timing to the second when the plane lands, when the helicopter brings fuel, when the helicopter brings the drugs, the plane is loaded or the ship is loaded, who knows about it, who doesn’t know about it because every person who knows about it is one potential witness or one potential rat. With all of that, I charge myself like, “Man, I hope that somebody figured a way to beat the DEA.” I’m a big advocate of law enforcement, and I think that narcotics trafficking is the most horrific thing that’s going on in the world today. I caught myself and I’m like, “What the heck, man?” How can Hollywood make something so passionate but I get this part of us, right, that all of us wants to be the bad guy, all of us want to associate with the real criminal because television and Hollywood make us out to be like the ultimate man, not afraid of anything. Listen, we didn’t fear death. We didn’t fear getting killed, but we lived in turmoil every second.
The day a load was going to come in, from the moment that airplane left the United States, talk about just one of the ways that we brought it in, and that airplane went to Colombia, and that airplane landed. The cocaine came in another helicopter because the cocaine would never be where the plane would land. Then besides that, then another helicopter brings the fuel. That airplane is loaded. Filled up. That airplane is going to cross over three different sovereign nations. You’ve got to have radars paid off. It’s bullshit that you can go under the radars all the time. How do you pay off the radars? You’ve got to deal with the highest levels of governments, presidents. One, two steps away from the president until the moment that airplane lands in the United States. If one thing goes wrong for five minutes, you are done. But that was just the beginning. That was the easy part. Then you’ve got to get it to your warehouses, then you’ve got to distribute it, then you’ve got to sell it and you’ve got to collect it. What the heck do we do with the money? That becomes like the most difficult part of it all.
It’s not that easy as people think that it is and what it was but it’s entertaining and we just need to look at those programs as entertaining. Another one that I love that I think is just as real as anyone ever been in the movie Fix with Michael Douglas where he’s the head of the DEA. He’s going there and he tells this drug dealer, “How can you bring my daughter to this hellhole?” And the drug dealer says, “Hey, this is the hellhole you created.” It's a fascinating world and it’s strange. I’m not telling people, “Don’t watch it.” I watch them all. In the beginning, I didn’t want to watch any of them because in the beginning they were made so cheesy. I thought that Blow was just a piece of garbage. Great job by Johnny Depp but I was kind of insulted when a gringo is going to go to Mexico and say, “I’m here to buy marijuana,” but you know how much bullshit that is.
I’m going to tell you, that gringo is about to leave and is about to become part of that fertilizer for marijuana. Or when he tells, “Oh, look at me, Pablo Escobar.” Well, that just doesn’t happen. Or the latest movie, American Made. I can tell you all kinds of stories about that. I knew the guy very close. He died at the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. I witnessed to him and visited him for 18 years, Miguel Velez, who killed Barry Seal, and he didn’t have that type of cash. He didn’t have that type of money. I know a few of those airplanes belonged to us. It’s over exaggerated because don’t lose grasp of the fact that it’s made out to be sensational, to be fun. I don’t know how fun it is killing people and all that but it’s Hollywood. $10 million to make each episode of Narcos, it’s a lot of money.
I don’t know what advice I can give to people when they watch it. Here’s the question, when they ask me, “Is it real or not?” I guess the best answer I got for them is, “What do you think? If you think it is, good, it is. If you don’t think it is, good, it’s not.” I mean, I’m not them. I don’t know what goes on in Mexico this time or not. I knew what went on and actually I knew what went on exactly prior to Pablo Escobar. I knew what went on after Pablo Escobar surfaced peripherally. We brought in loads with him. When I got out of prison, I worked with him for two years. I worked with Gacha also, I worked with others that were bigger than both of them, and nobody even knows about it. Just enjoy it for the fun that it is. If you are into the whole gangster genre and gangster and Narcos, it makes Netflix a lot of money.
Anthony: There were a lot of Hollywood people, Jorge, in the past, Hollywood movie producers so forth that wanted you to make your story, to make movies about you, to make series about you but you didn’t do it. There was even a rumor that Chuck Norris wanted to play the martial arts guy who actually led you to your personal redemption. Why did you not do it and what does the future hold for you in this amazing life story that you have?
Jorge: Recently, I just found an email that I got from my agent when my book came out. I was signing books in Dallas and he wanted me to meet up with Chuck Norris because he had moved really, really fast and Warner Brothers were making movies. They had gotten hold of my story, and they wanted to do it, I think it was for NBC or CBS, one of the two. But anyway, they had it all lined out, ready to go. I turned them down. Then there was another. After that, a lot of different opportunities. The reason that I turned down a lot of them, and I’m not saying this specifically about Chuck because I know my co-author, Ken Abraham, wrote a book with him and said the guy is a great guy, but the reason that … there was a two-fold reason.
First, my mentor, Walter Elwell, said, “I don’t want you to tell a story to get another story to tell.” That was number one, and I agreed. I wasn’t smart enough to realize how I should behave as a Christian so I just do what I tell people, “Listen, find yourself that you consider being someone you trust, someone who’s wise and follow their advice.” It was very hard for me. He was this older white man that knew very little about hard life but I submitted to his will and it really, really paid off. That was number one. Number two, I was enjoying when I wrote the book and I started doing big speaking events, I mean large speaking events. In the end, I saw people coming to get my autograph and I saw women throw themselves at me. I’ll come clean with you, I was excited. I was reliving that damn life all over again, and then afterward, I hated myself.
Number three ties to number one, and number three is, I didn’t want to do the same freaking damn story. I didn’t want to do the same story because just the way that I decided to write my first book, I didn’t want to tell another drug story. There wasn’t that many at that time. I’m like, “You know what, whatever’s out there, that’s good enough. I want to tell, one day, my story, but I want it to have an impact.” It’s going to be real, it’s going to be raw, it’s not going to be PG but it’s going to leave a message, and the message is, because at the end of the day ... let me retract a little bit. As I tell my story in print, as I tell my story on television, radio, magazines, I’m always conscious of one thing, my children are hearing it. So, if my children are hearing it, I don’t want the end summation for my children to say, “Oh, wow, what a powerful man my father was.” I want my children, when they finish reading anything that I do, I want them to say, “Wow, what a great God I serve that changed my father.”
For people who are not religious, I just want them to say, “If Jorge Valdes changed, I can, too. If Jorge Valdes found hope, I can too. If I am down, I’ve done horrible things in my life, I can be redeemed.” You find that path, whatever it is for you. Whether if you are a Muslim to the Quran, if you are Jewish to the Torah, to whatever holy book or if you are not. If you’re spiritual to whatever spirituality. At the end of the day, what’s important is that you find hope, that you find redemption, that you realize we’re not defined by our past, that there are consequences as you mentioned so well, eloquent in our last podcast. There are consequences to our choices. This is what I don’t understand a lot of people. I tell my children all the time. If you get arrested, don’t freaking call me to get your ass out. If you got testicles to get arrested, you get your ass out yourself.
I never cried when I got arrested. I didn’t say, “Oh, poor little me, look at me, I’m 23, they’ve gone and got the biggest band in the history of America, why me?” No. I knew I was real, real. My life had three paths. I was going to get very rich, I was going to die or I was going to spend the rest of my life in jail. When one of those happened, thank God it wasn’t the rest of my life, that showed the consequences of the choices that I made but I wanted my children so I waited and waited. I’m happy to announce, Anthony, I discussed this with you. I have recently, and I mean, I’ve been approached by every major studio.
I had a tremendous proposal by James Brubaker who did God Almighty, Bruce Almighty, to do a mini-series in 2005/2006. It was interesting. He said he walked into where he had breakfast in Beverly Hills every day and found my book and asked the waitress, and she said, “Well, no one’s been there.” Contacted my agent, he had the writer, he had the author, we were going to film in Puerto Rico, he had [inaudible 00:22:38] and it was going to be a mini-series. The interesting thing about that, there were no mini-series at that time except Band of Brothers and When we were Soldiers. This genius of a man he is that he foresaw that 10 years later this will be how media will be shown.
At that time, I wasn’t ready either because I had just built a multi-million-dollar company. I decided one day, if a man can’t define when enough is enough, greed is going to drive him, and I wanted my children. I had two last out of my six amazing children who I’m close to and I love to death, I had two left that were young, and I wanted to be a dad, a full-time dad to them. Even though we worked our ass off to get to a point where now we were making millions, we had 90-foot yacht, we had jets, left it all and moved to Cozumel, Mexico so that I can make breakfast in the morning, drive my children to school, pick them up and go to their games because they were not going to remember ... The day I die, I didn’t want them to remember, “Oh, my father was the US head of the group that became the Medellín Cartel.” No, I wanted them to remember, “Hey, my father was there making me breakfast. My father was at all my ball games.” My kid used to say, “You don’t have to come to practice, dad.” I said, “I know, I don’t have to, I want to.”
Now they're grown. My youngest daughter is going to Wheaton College where I met my amazing wife, a school I love so much, a school that we are working on creating an endowed chair for Latino students and poor students to be able to go and get an amazing Christian education in one of the most amazing schools on God’s earth. I love the new President, Philip Ryken, I love everybody in that school. It changed my life. I love Loyola too. I got my Ph.D. there but Wheaton changed my life. I am the man I am because of the short time that I was there. I wasn’t even there for a long time even though later I taught, and I’m going to start teaching again.
But because of all that, and my daughter’s leaving, and now my son is a young filmmaker in film school, I have joined with Rakontur, let me spell that: R-O-K-O-N-T-U-R. Rakontur. They did the whole series on Cocaine Cowboys and it was one of the most highly praised shows on Showtime history. They're great guys out of Miami. They are two friends that went to film school at the University of Miami. That hit home for me. I went to the University of Miami but one thing about them is there’s no fanfare about them. They do great work and they do things that are impactful and they know Miami better than anybody else. That was key for me. To join them in two major projects I’ll be able to announce later on. Right now, I’m not allowed, what they are. They know Miami like nobody knows Miami. They know the whole world as nobody does, and I just felt that yeah, we had Hollywood and big names and fancy names and big studios approach me, and big numbers.
At the end of the day, very important, all my proceeds are going to go for that endowed chair at Wheaton College so I couldn’t care less. I’m going to fight to make as much money as possible because I want the school to provide scholarships to kids that are never going to have a chance to be able to get an amazing formation and education. Yeah, I want to make as much money as I can but what was most important for me was that they would tell a story. The different projects, I’m involved in one project right now and then one at the end of next year and then [inaudible 00:25:50] many more projects. We’re going to be able to go deep into the past and to talk about what really nobody has asked themselves.
Think about it, if all of a sudden, you are looking at Narcos or anyone, let’s go back with Pablo Escobar and say 1982. All of a sudden, Pablo becomes very, very rich, and very powerful. Ask yourself, who the hell was there to give him a chance? How did that start? He didn’t come from robbing tombstones and robbing cars and running errands to become a multi-millionaire. I mean, cocaine didn’t come from zero. You know, [inaudible 00:26:22], the magic drug and all of a sudden, there are hundreds of kilos being brought in. Who was there at the beginning? How did it start? If he had a start, how did that work? How did it come in? How were the money laws created to go after our group that created the first financial webs? I’m sure it’s gotten more intricate and more sophisticated but everything had a beginning. That story’s never been told before.
I’m very excited to join Robby and Alfred. Love the guys. They’ve been after me for three years. They never give up but they're very sharp. Again, what I like about it, they're not presumptuous. They are just young filmmakers that want to tell a story about a city that came out of the ashes and became a very wealthy city. How did that happen? When we started, Miami was a place where you’d go to die or retire. I mean, it was nothing. It was just a dead, dead city. South Beach. I could by any condo buildings in South Beach for 50,000. It was nothing but junkies and whores in most of those condos. Look at it today. It’s unbelievable. But it’s interesting to me as I watch this whole progression and think how no one came up and asked except these two guys. These two young kids from Miami constantly asked, “How did it all begin? Who was there? How did this happen?” Because they lived during those times. Fascinating.
You know, I urge you to look at all their work, Cocaine Cowboys, Billy Corben and Alfred Spellmann, good guys. I’m very, very excited. This is the first time that I’ve announced it publicly so it’s on the Narco Mindset podcast that people first hear about that in the near future and not too long away future, we’re going to go back and we’re going to find out the roots of how this whole world began, and how something that people thought was innocent can turn out to be so evil, and how good people can make horrible decisions, and how we make choices and cross lines in life that impact generations, impact societies, impact worlds, kills people. You know, we don’t live in an isolated world, man. Every choice, I tell people, don’t say you're not hurting anybody.
Every choice we make in life has an equal consequence and a reaction. We do hurt. We begin by hurting us but the offender, the criminal, selfish persons. If he gets hurt, good for him but the innocent, the family, the children that didn’t choose the father or the mother, didn’t choose their community, didn’t choose the city, that’s what we’ve got to look at and that’s what excites me, to be able to finally, after, my God, let me see, the first time I got a push was 1998, so that’s what, 21 years ago or 22 years ago, to be able to do a class production down the road of what this role was all about because all we hear is the bad. Listen, I’m not going to tell you that when you see a production about me, you're going to hear nothing but good stuff. No, BS, there’s a lot of bad. I did a lot of bad things. I made a lot of bad choices. I suffered bad consequences. Tortures, 23. Pissed blood for five years after that. Hardened. Abandoned kids. Broken homes. A lot of bad. It isn’t all gold and glitter. It isn’t all Jeremiah, the cougar that I had, or the multi-million-dollar ranch I lived in or the Rolls Royces I drove.
There’s a lot of pain but there is a lot hope too, and that’s the message I want to get out, that there is hope, that we all have the power within us to change, to say, “Enough”. Even when we don’t know what change means, that if we’re going left, we are going to go right. If we’re going to go south, we’re going to go north. Thanks to God that I had a mother that gave me where true north was. I was able to come back. Thanks to God that I had a mother that cut me no freaking slack. It made my life miserable, telling me how wrong what I was doing, how I had become a person she did not know, how she refused to take a dollar from me. But also, parents, listen to this, in the same breath she would say, “Son, what do you want to eat tonight?” Because I was her child and nothing, and for her, as a very religious woman, she was convinced that her God was bigger than the monster her son had become and that I would one day again be who she raised me and created me to be and brought me up to be an educated me to be. I thank God that both of my parents saw me when I gave my first message right after prison, they saw me change, they both saw me get my Ph.D., saw the transformation.
But you know what? It did not erase the pain and the years of their lives that I took away, 10 years of their lives visiting me in prison after prison. I just thank God that, and we’re going to have an opportunity to, number one, to really say how it all began, and number two, to do something that, yeah, it’s going to be just as fascinating or more fascinating than when you see what you're seeing today. When you see what you’re seeing today, I mean, think about it, the last Narco, great show, I loved it but what was the intrigue? There were only a couple of maneuvers where the guy got away with something and in the end, they all die. But look at it this way, when we began, you’d talk about things that we developed, things that we created, how we created routes, how we created money laundering. There was no money laundering law so how we created intricate financial webs, how we paid off finance ministers, the corruption that went on. It’s very, very exciting. It’s wonderful and I look forward to being involved with these two guys. I like them a lot.
Anthony: I’m excited about it. I know we’re out of time but thank you for sharing all that. That’s a very exciting announcement, and I look forward to it and more to come.
Jorge: Awesome. Thanks so much, Anthony, for your questions. Thanks to all our listeners today for listening. If you have enjoyed the Narco Mindset podcast, I urge you, join our community at www.jorgevaldesphd.com. Valdes with an S, Mexicans spell it with a Z, Cubans with an S. Join our community, you get a free PDF copy of my latest book, Narco Mindset: Freedom Edition, but also, you're going to be up to speed on the blogs that I write, doing a lot of content. It’s like all these years have built up inside me, our YouTube channel, the interviews, fascinating interviews that I’m doing right now. You’ll be kept abreast of the podcasts, the subjects we’re touching upon. You're going to be there at the beginning of a movement.
I am so convinced, Anthony, I’ve never done anything, when I created the group that became the Medellín Cartel, I never in a million years imagined what it would be. When I started the company that I built into a multi-million-dollar company, all I wanted to do was sell it one day for a million dollars, have our house paid off after 30 years, and retire with my social security. Never did I imagine I would build it into a multi-million-dollar international company. But I’m telling you something right now, I am so convinced that the movement that we are involved and that everybody joins us now at the beginning will be involved, will transform our society because I believe that God doesn’t need my ability, he needs my availability and I believe that I can change the world.
Only those that are crazy enough, like you and I, Anthony, to believe that we can change the world, damn it, we will change the world. Listen, if at the age of 21, I changed the world for bad, at sixty-something, I’m going to damn change it for good. It’s going to be powerful and you joining our community, you’ll be the founding members and you will have a preference to materials that no one else is going to down the road. We are creating this right now so you are in the beginning stages of it all but it’s very exciting, and I look forward to talking to you on the next Narco Mindset podcast. God bless you and have a wonderful day.
OUTRO: We’ve come to the conclusion of this episode of the Narco Mindset podcast but your path towards hope, meaning and redemption continues. For more information and resources to help you on your path towards finding a life built on integrity, honor and truth, head to jorgevaldesphd.com, and join our community. We appreciate you joining us for this episode, and look forward to helping you find your turning point right here on the Narco Mindset podcast.