Monday, September 29, 2008 Editorials, Political Cartoons, and Polls from Investor's Business Daily -- Saddest Thing About This Mess: Congress Had Chance To Stop It

Unfortunately, this won't make any difference. The media has decided that this is a Republican/Wall Street problem, not a Democrat problem. So that's what it will be.

Soon after taking office, Bush had his hands full with the Clinton recession and 9/11. But by 2003, he proposed what the New York Times called "the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago."

The plan included a new regulator for Fannie and Freddie, one that could boost capital mandates and look at how they managed risk.

Even after regulators in 2003 uncovered a scheme by Fannie and Freddie executives to overstate earnings by $10.6 billion to boost bonuses, Democrats killed reform.

"Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are not facing any kind of financial crisis," said Rep. Frank, then-ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee.

North Carolina Democrat Melvin Watt accused the White House of "weakening the bargaining power of poorer families and their ability to get affordable housing."

In 2005, then-Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan told Congress: "We are placing the total financial system of the future at substantial risk."

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Securities & Investment: Money to Congress | OpenSecrets

This chart shows the top 20 Congressional recipients of money from the investment and securities industry. That's just for 2007-2008.

Obama, Barack (D) $10,059,210
Clinton, Hillary (D-NY) $7,355,720
McCain, John (R) $7,029,893
Dodd, Christopher J (D-CT) $2,932,532
Coleman, Norm (R-MN) $626,850
McConnell, Mitch (R-KY) $620,236
Emanuel, Rahm (D-IL) $600,500
Sununu, John E (R-NH) $595,650
Baucus, Max (D-MT) $547,500
Durbin, Dick (D-IL) $515,475
Biden, Joseph R Jr (D-DE) $432,450
Lautenberg, Frank R (D-NJ) $424,233
Shays, Christopher (R-CT) $362,720
Reed, Jack (D-RI) $359,550
Rangel, Charles B (D-NY) $329,850
Cornyn, John (R-TX) $325,425
Paul, Ron (R-TX) $313,129
Specter, Arlen (R-PA) $301,450
Collins, Susan M (R-ME) $292,650
Allen, Tom (D-ME) $277,640

The numbers on this page are based on contributions from PACs and individuals giving $200 or more. All donations took place during the 2007-2008 election cycle and were released by the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday, September 02, 2008.

I count 11 Democrats, thereby proving that their party is more corrupted than the Republicans.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Naomi Wolf: The Battle Plan II: Sarah "Evita" Palin, the Muse of the Coming Police State

Naomi Wolf on the coming police state. And yet somehow she stays out of jail. This is a very inefficient police state if you ask me. What I can't believe is that Democrats hire her for advice. Or did anyway. After this I don't think she'll be getting too many calls.

What's the plan? It is this. McCain doesn't matter. Reputable dermatologists are discussing the fact that in simply actuarial terms, John McCain has a virulent and life-threatening form of skin cancer. It is the elephant in the room, but we must discuss the health of the candidates: doctors put survival rates for someone his age at two to four years. I believe the Rove-Cheney cabal is using Sarah Palin as a stalking horse, an Evita figure, to put a popular, populist face on the coming police state and be the talk show hostess for the end of elections as we know them. If McCain-Palin get in, this will be the last true American election. She will be working for Halliburton, KBR, Rove and Cheney into the foreseeable future -- for a decade perhaps -- a puppet "president" for the same people who have plundered our treasure, are now holding the US economy hostage and who murdered four thousand brave young men and women in a way of choice and lies.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Ace of Spades HQ

Ace puts it all on one page. If McCain can't do something with this he doesn't deserve to be president. Obama's fingerprints (and the Dem's in general) are all over the financial mess.

New Agency Proposed to Oversee Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae - New York Times

I already know the answer, but why isn't this the lead of every story about the financial crisis? The article below is from 9/11/2003 and the NYT:

The Bush administration today recommended the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago.

Under the plan, disclosed at a Congressional hearing today, a new agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume supervision of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored companies that are the two largest players in the mortgage lending industry.

The new agency would have the authority, which now rests with Congress, to set one of the two capital-reserve requirements for the companies. It would exercise authority over any new lines of business. And it would determine whether the two are adequately managing the risks of their ballooning portfolios.

The plan is an acknowledgment by the administration that oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- which together have issued more than $1.5 trillion in outstanding debt -- is broken. A report by outside investigators in July concluded that Freddie Mac manipulated its accounting to mislead investors, and critics have said Fannie Mae does not adequately hedge against rising interest rates.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Classical Values :: The Best Congress Fannie Could Buy

Here's another one. But do we see this anywhere but on the conservative blogs? Hell no. Because look who the top four recipients of PAC money from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were:

1. Dodd, Christopher J D-CT $133,900

2. Kerry, John D-MA $111,000

3. Obama, Barack D-IL $105,849

4. Clinton, Hillary D-NY $75,550

JustOneMinute: The Mortgage Debacle - Not Enough Blame To Share Some With The Democrats?

An interesting recap of how the nation's financial mess came about. I wonder if McCain's camp is smart enough to do something with this. Or will they keep going back to look at what Obama did as a state legislator?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Suitably Flip: "How Come I Would Make the Economy Better" by Barry Obama

How Come I Would Make the Economy Better, by Barry Obama Barry gets his paper on the economy graded. Not pretty.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I was in Phoenix, still lying in bed when my wife walked in the room to tell me that a plane had flown into the World Trade Center. Like most people I assumed that meant a small private plane had gone off course. I couldn't understand how a pilot could be so bad at flying to not be able to miss an obstacle that large. I walked into the living room, and as I recall, within a couple of minutes saw the second plane hit. I actually shouted "Oh my god, there's another one?" Your mind really doesn't grasp what is happening when you see something like that, especially when you've only been awake for a few minutes.

We spent the rest of the morning watching it all unfold. We were expecting the father of a friend from Ireland to arrive that day, and later that week he and I were supposed to ride mules down the Grand Canyon. The TV reported that the nation's airspace was being closed and all flights were grounded, so we were on the phone back to Ireland to see if our friends had heard anything from their dad. That's when I watched the collapse of the first tower. "Oh dear god, no, no, no, no..." was all I remember saying through my hands that were suddenly now at my face.

Utter disbelief, horror, what other emotions are there at a time like that? I felt the same things as everyone else on this thread. I distinctly remember thinking that the country was now at war and probably would be for the rest of my life. I figured that it would never really end, and the world I grew up in, as violent and turbulent as it had been already, had changed forever and not for the better.

After the second tower collapsed, as I guess we knew it would, I watched the TV a bit longer then finally decided to go to work. But first I had to do something. I had already turned more conservative politically as I got older (I was 44 at the time) but wasn't much of a flag waver and would really cringe when I heard crowds chant "USA! USA! USA!." But I couldn't leave until I went to the closet and pulled out our flag and put it on the front of the house. Unexpectedly, tears welled up in my eyes as I did so. At that moment I knew what it must have felt like right after Pearl Harbor. Feelings of pride, rage, and resolve all mixed together. Had I been 20 years younger I would have enlisted that very day. Strangely enough, I never felt more American.


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Why aren't women furious about Sarah Palin? | Salon Life

I think the McCain campaign should reproduce this article and send it out as a press release. Or just read it from the stage every chance they get.

Palin may have been a boost of political Viagra for the limp, bloodless GOP (and according to an ABC/Washington Post poll she has created a boost in McCain's standing among white women to a 53 over Obama's 41). But ideologically, she is their hardcore pornographic centerfold spread, revealing the ugliest underside of Republican ambitions -- their insanely zealous and cynical drive to win power by any means necessary, even at the cost of actual leadership.

Sarah Palin is a bit comical, like one of those cutthroat Texas cheerleader stage moms. What her Down syndrome baby and pregnant teenage daughter unequivocally prove, however, is that her most beloved child is the antiabortion platform that ensures her own political ambitions with the conservative right. The throat she's so hot to cut is that of all American women.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Martin Taylor duets with himself. Amazing.