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Billionaire financier and philanthropist George Soros credits his success to his lazy father, Tivadar, and the happiest year of his life, 1944. The Soros family was scattered and in hiding, living with Christians during the Nazi occupation. At any moment, Soros’ false papers could have been exposed and he could’ve been shot. But the teenager thrilled to the cat-and-mouse game. And his father, who had been renowned as a loafer, entered his “finest hour” as a trader in false papers. George, who has personally given away more than a billion dollars, traces his interest in philanthropy to his father’s black-market activity. “I had never seen him work so hard,” he says. Since the fall of communism in Europe, Soros has been particularly interested in building markets in former Soviet countries—and frustrated by the West’s reluctance to invest. Soros will discuss his latest book, Open Society: Reforming Global Capitalism, at 6:30 p.m. at the Library of Congress’ Madison Building, Mumford Room, 101 Independence Ave. SE. Free. (202) 707-5221. (Janet Hopf)