9/30/08

McCain and Fannie and Freddie

McCain's latest ad depicts him as calling for reform of Fannie and Freddie back in 2006, even earlier considering his co-sponsorship of the Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Act of 2005.

From CNN:

In May 2006, McCain was speaking on the Senate floor in support of the Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Act of 2005, a plan he had co-sponsored. In the speech, he cited a federal report, saying that "Fannie Mae employees deliberately and intentionally manipulated financial reports to hit earnings targets." He also noted a $3.8 million fine Freddie Mac had recently paid to the Federal Elections Commission over problems with disclosure of its political lobbying.

"These are entities that have demonstrated over and over again that they are deeply in need of reform," McCain said in the speech. He urged senators to support changing how the institutions were overseen by the government. "If Congress does not act, American taxpayers will continue to be exposed to the enormous risk that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac pose to the housing market, the overall financial system, and the economy as a whole," McCain said in the speech.

The legislation, which never became law, would have moved oversight of Fannie and Freddie from the department of Housing and Urban Development to an independent Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Agency.

While it's impossible to know what the impact of his legislation would have been, the ad accurately describes McCain's stance and comments.

That bill never made it out of the Democrat-controlled Congress.

The latest two-step from Obama

Back on FoxNews Sunday, on April 27 of this year, Barack Obama said this:

"So here's my philosophy -- I want to do what works for the American people, and both at the state legislative level and at the federal legislative level, I have always been able to work together with Republicans to find compromise and to find common ground. That's how I was able to provide health care for people who needed it in Illinois. That's how I passed ethics reform, both at the state and the federal level. That's how -- you know, I've worked with people like Dick Lugar from here in Indiana on critical issues like nuclear proliferation."

That's what he said: "...I have always been able to work together with Republicans..."

Yet today, on ABC News, he said "I don't think me calling House Republican members would have been that helpful. I tend not to be that persuasive on that side [Republican] of the aisle."

He said that today in an interview with John Berman in Reno, NV. The transcript is available on the ABC News website.

Obama, rather than exercise his self-touted ability to 'work together with Republicans', backed away instead, waffled on the opportunity, and now joins the rest of the Democrats, including Ken Salazar and John Salazar, in their self-serving finger-pointing.

The truth of the matter is that Obama holds the number two spot at the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac trough and is in the sack with more defrocked Fannie Mae scumbags than a defrocked pedophiliac priest is with a bunch of Short Eyes at a NAMBLA meeting. The only Democrat who has snuffled more cash from the Democrats' Golden Parachute Club is Chris Dodd. You aren't going to hear anything about that. All you are going to hear from the Democrats is more Pelosian rhetoric.

Pelosi, Reid, Dodd, Obama, and all the rest would like us to drop the digging up of the Democrats' connection to Fannie and Freddie, which are at the center of the current fiasco. They say we should put that aside and work toward a solution.

Yeah? I'll bet they would like that. Their idea of a solution means everyone forgets about their complicity and gives them the keys to the kingdom. Why would we want to do that? So we have more of the same?

John Salazar wants a bill that will offer assistance to homeowners at risk of losing their homes, who cannot make their mortgage payments.

Translated into plain English, that means that you and I have to make our own mortgage payments, and then shell out to make the payments for all those people who never should have received mortgages in the first place...but they did, because of the policies of the Democratic Party.

Where in the Constitution is everyone guaranteed homeownership? Where in the Constitution is anyone guaranteed homeownership?

Most of us started out by scrimping and saving for a downpayment on a home. We started out with a fixer-upper. Then if the chance came along, we sold that and moved on up to the East Side, or what passes for it.

Why are we having to pay the Democrats' freight for this monumental screwup?

Why is Congress running around over this like a bunch of chickens with their heads cut off? They are a disgusting embarrassment to this nation.

While Barack Obama and Joe Biden and John Salazar and Ken Salazar are kiting around like Chicken Little, other people are using their heads and coming up with alternatives rather than beating their chops, running in circles, and screaming and shouting hysterically:

Plan B

The market

The DOW is up over 400 points.

Wouldn't it be a real kick in the butt for our beloved Congress if the market essentially said, in collective sense, "Screw you, we can fix it ourselves."

That would take some cojones on Wall Street.

Can they do it? Remember, these are people who run around like chickens with their heads cut off every time an Arab prince farts, Donald Trump gets a new wig, or Lou Dobbs pontificates.

Maybe they'll fool us all and get a grip.

The Beltway Crash

This is a very good opinion piece:

The Beltway Crash: Congress lives up to its 10% approval rating

An excerpt:

Her [Pelosi] highly partisan speech on the floor -- blaming "right-wing ideology of anything goes, no supervision, no discipline, no regulation" for the financial distress -- is no excuse for Republicans to vote no. But it is indicative of the way she has governed for the past two years -- like Tom DeLay without the charm. The cynics are saying Ms. Pelosi deliberately tanked the bill by giving 95 Democrats a pass, knowing failure would hurt John McCain, and given her track record we can see why people would believe it.

You betcha I believe it. I've been following the Pelosi Follies since she took over as Speaker of the House. This is typical of her.

Then we have this:

House Republicans share the blame, and not only because they opposed the bill by about two-to-one, 133-65. Their immediate response was to say that many of their Members turned against the bill at the last minute because Ms. Pelosi gave her nasty speech. So they are saying that Republicans chose to oppose something they think is in the national interest merely because of a partisan slight. Thank heaven these guys weren't at Valley Forge.

I agreed with that too, at least at first blush, thinking "but only if that is really why the Republicans voted against the bill. If they truly thought the bill was the best thing to do, in the best interest of the nation, then they should have manned up and voted for it." Well, at this point I don't think that it is the best thing. It's the best thing for a bunch of bankers and executives, and it will almost surely smooth things out for awhile, but paying off the crooked, greedy, immoral whores of Wall Street, again, doesn't set well. Then, after a bit of consideration, it occurred to me that yeah, they should have voted against it even if Pelosi's partisan speech was the only reason. Look. At the heart of this crisis is the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac fiasco. And the reason for that is the Democratic Party's interference with both companies. Until Pelosi and the Democrats own up to their complicity, there is no sense in simply going along with the program. They caused it; they continue to demonstrate no acknowledgment or responsibility for it. Until they do, there should be no deals. Otherwise,as the Democrats are so fond of saying, "It's business as usual."

Then there is this, about the Eunuch of the Treasury:

The vote is also a rebuke for Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, who could barely explain how his securities auctions would work even as he showed disdain for House Republicans. President Bush did his best to provide cover for the Members, but he is a spent political force. One GOP Member who supported the bill told us that before Mr. Paulson spoke to House Republicans last week, the whip count in favor was about 70; afterwards, it was closer to 20. You can't ask Congress for $700 billion without more modesty and a better explanation for how it would be used.

How did that guy ever get into the Treasury in the first place?

The Pelosi Club Sandwich

From Chris Muir's Day by Day; today's strip:

"I didn't see how it affected me..."

That's what a fellow down south said of the current fiscal mess.

He has a point. The average Joe isn't going to see any immediate effect. I haven't. You probably haven't either.

But then, he checked his retirement funds.

"I don't have a lot," he said, "but I've been saving steadily since my first job. I lost 19% last week. $40,000. It just disappeared."

Just so the Democrats could toot their horns as 'the party of the people', providing 'affordable housing' to people who had no business being given mortgages.

And now, you and I get to pay our mortgages, and theirs too.

John Salazar voted against the bill yesterday. He didn't vote against it because he thought it was the wrong thing to do fiscally. He voted against it because it didn't provide -he said - adequate protections for homeowners.

He isn't talking about people who have been paying their mortgages faithfully. He isn't talking about people who scrimpled and saved for a down payment. He isn't talking about people who bought small, worked like dogs to fix up that 'fixer upper' and sell it and move on up to the East Side...he's talking about people to whom any sane banker would never have made a loan in the first place. He is talking about people who from Day One had no chance of keeping up the payments.

$700 billion dollars. That's the Democratic Party's legacy to the nation. They are trying real hard to blame it all on the last 8 years, but it just doesn't wash. More and more news outlets are starting to roll on the GMAC entanglement with the Democrats. It started out with political bloggers, but now even the Democrats' campaign propaganda outlets like CNN are starting to pick up on it, albeit grudgingly and on the back pages.

$700 billion dollars in debt, for us, for our children, for our grandchildren, and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are at the heart of it, and the Democrats are up to their ears in it.

And all they can do is harp on 'the last eight years'.

Do we really want to give these people the Oval Office?

Clogged up servers

The US House of Representatives servers seem to be clogged with messages from really angry voters.

I am unable to get into John Salazar's website to send him a message that if he votes for this bailout I will make it my lifelong project to do everything I can to get him out of the House and back into the San Luis Valley, shoveling cowshit and throwing scraps to the hogs, which is where he obviously belongs. Along with Nancy Pelosi, Brother Ken, and the rest of those political whores.

Fax lines are also clogged.

The Pelosi Factor



Pelosi completely ignores the Democratic Party's involvement in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, their involvement in Lehman Brothers, their thirty year history of meddling with the GMAC's, their thirty year history of using the GMAC's as a 'golden parachute' for their annointed sycophants to line their pockets with our tax dollars, their thirty year history of juggling the books at the GMAC's so future 'campaign advisors' for Obama could slime their way out with millions upon millions of dollars in undeserved bonuses and inflated salaries.

She says it snuck up on us 'like little cat feet'.

Is she really that ignorant?

I don't think so.She is part and parcel of it.

The arrogance of this speech is mind-boggling. Her own words apply specifically and directly to her and her party.

She is relying on her perceived ignorance on the part of the American voter to simply buy this garbage. She is either the most ignorant creature in America or the most morally corrupt.

9/29/08

Democrat complicity and stupidity in the fiscal mess

Here it is.

This is a CSPAN clip of Democrats defending Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2004 and accusing Republicans of trying to undermine confidence in the system.

Listen to this:



Listen to these self-serving idiots. The state of affairs in Fannie and Freddie had been published in all of the major newspapers. These clowns apparently do not know how to read.

Listen to Barney Frank. Listen to him, and then listen to him now.

Listen to them defend Frank Raines.

Listen to the bonuses Raines and the rest received.

Ken Salazar and John Salazar seem to be oblivious to this. That makes them simply dumber than dirt. Or...they know all about it. Which makes them liars complicit in the whole shoddy, sordid affair.

Here is another one:

Why the bailout is a bad idea

Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats are trying to rush the country into their plan to "save us".

There is another side to it. This is one of the best articles yet on why the bailout is a bad idea:

Why the bailout is a bad idea

An excerpt:

So what should the government do? Eliminate those policies that generated the current mess. This means, at a general level, abandoning the goal of home ownership independent of ability to pay. This means, in particular, getting rid of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, along with policies like the Community Reinvestment Act that pressure banks into subprime lending.

The right view of the financial mess is that an enormous fraction of subprime lending should never have occurred in the first place. Someone has to pay for that. That someone should not be, and does not need to be, the U.S. taxpayer.

Pelosi, Frank, Dodd...Obama...all want to frighten the wits out of us all, ignoring the past sins of the Democratic party in pandering to their reputation of being the 'party of the people', pushing for 'affordable housing'...they want to hide, to obfuscate their primary role in the development of the current fiasco. They can do that best by continuously repeating the erroneous mantra of "...the last eight years..." and then by shoving this mess down our throats. We get to pay for it. We get to listen to how they 'saved' us. We get to listen to them tell us how they have taken care of us.

They've 'taken care' of alright. Just like a hit by Tony Soprano, and about as firmly based in moral and ethical behavior. Come to think on it, would there be much difference if we had the Sopranos sitting in the Congress right now?

Nancy Pelosi: World class stupidity

The bailout bill failed to pass the House today. Minority leaders attribute the failure in large measure to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi's ill-advised attack on the Bush administration.

"This is not a partisan crisis, this is an economic crisis," said Deputy Minority Whip Rep. Eric Cantor, who said that 94 Democrats also refused to go along with the bill. He described the vote as the result of "Speaker Pelosi's failure to listen and failure to lead."

House Republican Conference Chairman, Rep. Adam Putnam of Florida, said "he was disappointed that the process that yielded a bipartisan approach took a very marked, partisan tone at the end of the debate."

Here is what Pelosi said:

"When was the last time someone asked you for $700 billion?" Pelosi asked in a floor speech shortly before the vote. "It is a number that is staggering, but tells us only the costs of the Bush administration's failed economic policies — policies built on budgetary recklessness, on an anything goes mentality, with no regulation, no supervision and no discipline in the system." Without commenting on her criticism or the GOP response, Pelosi said that Republicans have not received the message from the White House that bipartisanship was needed.

Republicans have not received the message? I have always thought Pelosi was pretty much disconnected from reality, but those comments cinch it solidly.

Pelosi would have us all ignore the Democrats' role in all of this, beginning as far back as the Carter administration and the Community Reinvestment Act, which was 'supercharged' in 1996 by Bill Clinton's administration. That is the act that required banks to make loans, mortgages, to people who under any rational circumstances would never qualify for those loans.

The major newspapers, such as the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times, are full of warnings over the last two decades about Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and other mortgage and loan institutions. Little if any of those warnings have to do with the Republicans.

For example:

On September 30, 1999, this appeared in the New York Times:

"Fannie Mae, the nation's biggest underwriter of home mortgages, has been under increasing pressure from the Clinton Administration to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people . . . ''Fannie Mae has expanded home ownership for millions of families in the 1990's by reducing down payment requirements,'' said Franklin D. Raines, Fannie Mae's chairman and chief executive officer. ''Yet there remain too many borrowers whose credit is just a notch below what our underwriting has required who have been relegated to paying significantly higher mortgage rates in the so-called subprime market.'' Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980's. ''From the perspective of many people, including me, this is another thrift industry growing up around us,'' said Peter Wallison a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. ''If they fail, the government will have to step up and bail them out the way it stepped up and bailed out the thrift industry.''

and on May 25, 2001 from the New York Times:

"Traditional power centers in Washington, like organized labor and the government-sponsored enterprises (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac), will now have important political allies back in positions of leadership in the Senate after coming under heavy assault by the Republicans.", in response to the Democrats taking over those leadership position.

and from the Los Angeles Times in May, 1999:

"Under Clinton, bank regulators have breathed the first real life into enforcement of the Community Reinvestment Act, a 20-year-old statute meant to combat “redlining” by requiring banks to serve their low-income communities. The administration also has sent a clear message by stiffening enforcement of the fair housing and fair lending laws. The bottom line: Between 1993 and 1997, home loans grew by 72% to blacks and by 45% to Latinos, far faster than the total growth rate. Lenders also have opened the door wider to minorities because of new initiatives at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac–the giant federally chartered corporations that play critical, if obscure, roles in the home finance system. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac buy mortgages from lenders and bundle them into securities; that provides lenders the funds to lend more. In 1992, Congress mandated that Fannie and Freddie increase their purchases of mortgages for low-income and medium-income borrowers. Operating under that requirement, Fannie Mae, in particular, has been aggressive and creative in stimulating minority gains. It has aimed extensive advertising campaigns at minorities that explain how to buy a home and opened three dozen local offices to encourage lenders to serve these markets. Most importantly, Fannie Mae has agreed to buy more loans with very low down payments–or with mortgage payments that represent an unusually high percentage of a buyer’s income. That’s made banks willing to lend to lower-income families they once might have rejected."

And Barney Frank, that fellow who has been in it up to his ears for years had this to say:

"Because somebody hurt their feelings they decide to punish the country. ... I mean, that's hardly plausible" said Frank.

It is obviously highly plausible, because that is exactly what we got from Pelosi today.

Pelosi is joined in her complete disregard of fact by our own Senator Ken Salazar, who last week said:

"Where was Hank Paulson for the past year when middle-America has been going through a home foreclosure crisis? Where was President Bush?" Ken Salazar asked Wednesday. "Back then, they were saying all the economy's fundamentals were strong. Were they distorting the reality for the public or were they just wrong? Now they want more money than we've spent on the entire war in Iraq," the senator said.

I know where Paulson and Bush were, Senator. I also know where the Democrats have been. Or at least where their hands have been. They have been deep in my pockets. They want to go even deeper.

Salazar and Frank and Pelosi and the rest of those...Democrats...should be deeply ashamed of themselves for their pathetic partisanship, obfuscation of fact, and outright lies. At this point, I would prefer to see Wall Street go belly up rather than submit to such blatant political whoring. The future of the nation; the future of our children and grandchildren is clearly at stake...and all these ...Democrats...can do is posture, pander, lie, obfuscate, and demonstrate to the nation that they think we are cowpie stupid.

A pox on them all.

Look at this:

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said Democrats will take a look at what to do next. "We did our part," said Hoyer of Maryland. "As I said on the floor, this is a bipartisan responsibility and we think (Democrats) met our responsibility." Hoyer, you fool. You did nothing to meet any responsibility in any sense of the word. What you did was take this crisis and try to turn it to your own selfish, miserable purposes.

The worst of it was Pelosi:

Opponents said part of the reason for the opposition from Republicans was what they termed a partisan speech by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, said one GOP source. House Minority Whip Roy Blunt said he thinks Republicans could have provided a dozen more votes had Pelosi not given her speech.

Pelosi had said that Congress needed to pass the bill, even though it was an outgrowth of the "failed economic policies" of the last eight years. "When was the last time someone asked you for $700 billion?" she asked. "It is a number that is staggering, but tells us only the costs of the Bush administration's failed economic policies — policies built on budgetary recklessness, on an anything goes mentality, with no regulation, no supervision, and no discipline in the system."

Further, Pelosi's legislation has within it allocations for such as ACORN, FORD, and other of those extortionist leftist 'housing advocacy' groups who have been deeply entwined with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. A good deal of the problem of making poorly thought out loans to people who can't pay them back is attributable to lobbying from those groups. She wants to keep them in play. They ought to be ridden out of town on a rail. Come to think on it, so should Pelosi, Reid, Frank, et al.

How can such a blindly oblivious fool be tolerated as the Speaker of the House? Does that woman have two brain cells that actually connect?

OK, so this is a rant. Yes, I freely confess that. I've already covered the background on why these people are such oxygen thieves. Here it is again:

More obfuscatory nonsense from the Democrats

The Barney Frank Snow Job

The Chieftain figures it out

Obama laments debt but promises billions for the UN

The continuing saga of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae

" A shocking series of events..."

Over on CNN Money, there's a 'timeline' of the current fiscal fiasco. It starts on September 14, with the announcement of the Lehman Brothers 'difficulties'.

CNN seems to think this started on September 14. CNN has a very short attention span.

To find out how we came to be here, today, waiting for the Nine Percenters (Congress has a 9% approval rating as of last week's polls) to pull their heads out and actually do something useful for a change, you really do have to go back to when Jimmy Carter signed into law that "Community Reinvestment Act". That was 1977. You can follow that act, which has the Democratic Party's fingerprints all over it down through the years, all the way to when Bill Clinton 'put it on steroids' in 1996.

You can also follow the articles in such as the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and other publications of significance, as they identified serious problems with everything associated with the CRA, and the ripple effect on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and on other investment banks, mortgage companies, and various financial institutions.

You can also follow how the well-connected sycophants of the Democratic Party sucked those institutions dry by moving in as 'executives', taking huge salaries, juggling the books, making themselves look good, catering to the extreme left by throwing money at all those so-called 'housing advocate organizations', and listening to political whores like Barney Frank and Chris Dodd and Barack Obama go on about 'affordable housing.'

Tell me. Can you afford any more of this 'affordable housing' the Democrats keep talking about?

We are on the verge of bailing them out yet once again. What is a $700 billion debt going to do to all those wonderful smokescreens like 'universal health care'? Does anyone seriously think that is still on the table?

What kind of under-the-table deals were cut in order to put this bailout together. Does anyone seriously think any of the Nine Percenters got together and altruistically looked out for our best interest? If that was their motivation we would not be in this mess today.

We're running on a continuing resolution. The FY2009 authorization bills have not been signed into law. What kinds of quid pro quo's were worked out to get this thing moving so quickly?

Where is the Pinon Canyon deal in all this? It's a very small bit of the pie but in all the wheeling and dealing, what greater package might it have been in?

It's going to be interesting to watch the progress of these authorization bills over the next few months, just to see how things shake out.

Meanwhile, think about that 111% rate hike for natural gas; gasoline prices; food prices; electric and water rates...and then think of people like Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Jim Johnson (Obama's former Fannie Mae CEO pal) and all the rest of those whores enjoying life on your dime.

All of them are Democrats.

9/27/08

Swink volleyball












Range day

The kids went shooting today. Here we have the boys going tactical and popping steel with a rather nice little .308, while Froggy opts for the .22 Browning. She is a good shot and rang the gong pretty much continuously. Yes...we know. No eye protection for Michael and Frogs. Posed shots. Not shooting in these shots. They wore safety glasses when actually shooting:




More WaMu nuttiness

In this morning's email, we have an announcement from from WaMu.

Did you know that holiday shopping is easier than ever if you start saving today?

Yes, it certainly is! And here is the WaMu announcement:
Start saving for the holidays today! With kids back in school and a nip in the air, we’re suddenly reminded that the holidays are just around the corner.

Even if you’re not ready to hit the stores, you can cut down on holiday stress by saving a little extra cash today. With Online Savings at an amazing 4.00% APY and great rates on Money Market accounts, we have plenty of ways to kick your holiday savings into gear.

Learn more about your options and these great rates for saving for the holidays.

+++++

Isn't that enticing? Well...I typed up a note and enclosed it with a dollar bill and sent it to WaMu headquarters:

Sorry guys. Can't do it. Much as I would like to, I need to set aside money to pay off the $700 billion bailout. Also, somebody has to take care of Al Fishman's $20 million separation package. After all, we WaMu customers have a $7.5 million bonus we have to pay to Al for his 17 days on the job. Holiday shopping? Pretty much out of the picture, dudes. Tell you what though, here is a dollar that you can add to Al's pot. I'd send more; God knows he deserves it as much as Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Hillary and Bill, and Barack Obama. Well...no matter. You can get it out of my kids and grandkids, since they will be paying off that $700 billion long after I'm gone. Enjoy your executive getaways down on those Caribbean beaches.

9/26/08

Swink homecoming game

The Lions won their homecoming game against Primero/Holy Trinity Bulldogs 50-0 this evening.

Here are a few pictures. The play-by-play and more photos will be in Monday's T-D.


Aaron Ames (33) stops the Bulldog's Willie McDonald (11)


McDonald (Bulldogs 11) reconsiders his options as Tyler Lewis (34) closes in


Brock Miller is nearly Bulldogged as Luke Schroeder (53) comes in to cover his six


Brock Miller collars a Bulldog


Bulldog's McDonald skids on the grass as Ethan Miner (1) does a fast bit of evasive action


The balls drops in on Kyle Stroud


Coach Ray Headley shares his viewpoints with the lads


Homecoming royalty was crowned at half-time. Here we have Homecoming King Josh Harris; Homecoming Queen Vanessa Gallegos; crown bearers Robin Wallace and Jacob Wilhoite


After game consultation with The Head Coach

The Treasury's Eunuch

From WaPo:

WASHINGTON — The day began with an agreement that Washington hoped would end the financial crisis that has gripped the nation. It dissolved into a verbal brawl in the Cabinet Room of the White House, urgent warnings from the president and pleas from a Treasury secretary who knelt before the House speaker and appealed for her support.


"Knelt before the House speaker"?

"Treasury secretary, Henry M. Paulson Jr., literally bent down on one knee as he pleaded with Nancy Pelosi, the House Speaker, not to “blow it up” by withdrawing her party’s support for the package over what Ms. Pelosi derided as a Republican betrayal."

The Secretary of the Treasury actually knelt before Nancy Pelosi?

“I didn’t know you were Catholic,” Ms. Pelosi said, a wry reference to Mr. Paulson’s kneeling, according to someone who observed the exchange. She went on: “It’s not me blowing this up, it’s the Republicans.”

Mr. Paulson sighed. “I know. I know.”

He "knows"? Knows what? Apparently not much. That, or he's been watching Obama's official propaganda machine, CNN way too much.

He needs to grow a pair. If we had a Treasury Secretary with some balls, and some guts, we might not be in as bad a mess as we are now.

Pelosi? She took it as her due.

We need a new Secretary of the Treasury. We need a Speaker of the House who doesn't think she is Queen of Washington.

WaMu Gives New CEO Mega Payout as Bank Fails

The Mega Payout

Bush wants to let Fishman and the rest of his brother leeches keep this kind of money. Both sides of the aisle in the Congress want to stop it. Of course, that includes all those Democrats' cush spots in Fannie and Freddie...but now that the axe is poised over the neck of that Democratic golden goose and they have nothing to lose, they can afford to be 'fiscally responsible'.

This is insane:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Nice work — if you can get fired from it.

That's just what one Alan H. Fishman might have thought when he woke up Friday morning.

Fishman was the new chief executive officer for Washingon Mutual — WaMu — the nation's largest savings and loan, which was taken over Thursday night by federal bank regulators and quickly dumped in a fire sale to JPMorgan Chase for the Wal-Mart-like price of $1.9 billion.

But don't cry for Fishman, who reportedly was sky-high — literally — last night, on a flight from New York to Seattle, when WaMu collapsed. Even though he's only been on the job for less than three weeks, he's bailing out with parachute worth close to $20 million, according to an executive compensation analysis conducted for the New York Times by James F. Reda Associates.

That's right, $20 million for 17 days on the job ... and his company failed.

Fishman, who formerly was chairman of Meridian Capital Group, apparently was much coveted by WaMu, which was counting on him to lead the failing thrift out of mortgage troubles that pushed the bank to a $3.3 billion second-quarter loss.

According to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, WaMu threw a $7.5 million bonus at Fishman when it hired him on Sept. 8, and guaranteed him an immediate cash severence of $11.6 million — both of which he gets to keep.

He also was eligible for annual bonuses of up to 365 percent of his annual base pay — set at $1 million — to go with millions of shares of company stock.

Fishman does lose out on a big bonus that would have kicked in had he remained on the job through 2009.

Documents show WaMu was going to pay their new boss $8 million to simply not screw up and get fired — all negotiated as the Seattle-based banking giant's loses climbed to an estimated $20 billion.

More obfuscatory nonsense from the Democrats

Barack Obama and Harry Reid and the rest of the Democratic 'leadership' has been blaming McCain for disrupting yesterday's executive summit session. This commentary goes beyond simple misunderstanding. It is deliberately misleading, and patently false. It rises to the level of outright lying. These guys were there. They know what went on. Yet they continue to think they can pump a line of verbal feces directly to the American people, who will unquestioningly accept it as fact.

(Updated 09.26.2008/2220 GMT)

Fox News
September 26, 2008

Fox News' Jon Scott: "Carl, give us your assessment of the statement that Harry Reid made a little bit earlier during that news conference. He didn't use John McCain's name, but he said that things were proceeding along swimmingly, essentially. And they were, you know, getting close. And then he said a certain person came to Washington and the wheels fell off. Is that an accurate description of what happened?"

Fox News' Carl Cameron:"No. There wasn't a deal. You have to first accept a predicate that there was an arrangement agreed to by all the necessary lawmakers and authorities -- that was essentially a piece of paper and a proposal that had been discussed and agreed to by one senate committee -- that's not the same as a deal. A deal in budget parlance and bailout parlance requires the White House, the regulators, the House and Senate Republicans and Democrats. And because House Republicans were not given an adequate seat at the table, Republicans had great misgivings about this -- the American people have great misgivings about this -- I mean 60% and more in many polls say that the public just doesn't like this. They think it's way too big a bailout with not enough insurance that the Devil is not in those details. So McCain's role in this was to bring about progress for a deal, which as of this hour has not yet existed. They are getting closer, they say, but yesterday because there was a commerce committee deal does not constitute finality, that was McCain's point and he has been making it since Monday. And Harry Reid saying that we shouldn't inject Presidential politics into this and then immediately turn to John McCain raises some questions. Everybody is playing politics, with less than 40 days before the election, of course this was going to be looked at through partisan prisms, but how about looking at it through taxpayer prisms, taxpayer glasses. All of this discussion about we're worried about Wall Street, but more about main street -- taxpayers are included in both of those places, and Republicans in the House say they were not brought to the table adequately, and these aren't John McCain's idea's per se, he just brought all the people together so that these ideas could be articulated and if Democrats buy into them, that will be part of the deal as yet uncut."

The Examiner's Bill Sammon: "First of all I just wanted to say, I want to echo what Carl said, this sort of clumsy attempt by Harry Reid and the Democrats to say that a deal had been reached at one o'clock yesterday afternoon and suddenly, to put it in Harry Reid's words, 'and then guess who came to town and it completely fell apart?' I mean that is a patently false explanation of what happened. And it would seem to be an attempt to preemptively set up John McCain for blame when he did arrive in town because there wasn't a deal."



There was no deal. They had supposedly agreed on certain principles. That was it. No deal had been reached; there was nothing for anyone to blow out of the water.

What Happened In The Cabinet Room...

By Marc Ambinder

The Atlantic

September 25, 2008, 7:22 PM

http://marcambinder.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/09/mccain_kept_head_down_in_meeti.php

Though Sen. Chris Dodd implied that Sen. McCain sandbagged the rest of the negotiators by bringing up alternative proposals, McCain himself did not bring up those proposals, according to four independent sources briefed by four different principals inside the meeting, including two Republicans and two Democrats.

"McCain has not attacked the Paulson deal," said a third Republican who was briefed by McCain directly. "Unlike the [Democrats] in the [White House] meeting, he didn't raise his voice or cause a ruckus. He is urging all sides to come together."

Republicans like John Boehner brought up the concerns of House GOPers and McCain acknowledged hearing about their concerns. And McCain, and staffers, did seek to gauge the level of support of the GOP working group's white paper. The Democrats were left with the impression that McCain endorsed the GOP efforts, but they concede that he did not raise them directly.

The fact is that Boehner doesn't have 100 votes from his conference -- 100 votes that Nancy Pelosi really wants. And that's not McCain's fault.

But Boehner and the White House -- and McCain -- if they want to get something passed -- do have the responsibility to persuade these Republicans to support the bailout .

After all, if not to get these recalcitrant Republicans on board, why did McCain go to Washington in the first place?

9/25/08

The 'black hole' of Dallas County

Talk about moonbats in the belfry.

"A comment about Dallas County's central collection system for tickets ignited a controversy when Judge Thomas Jones claimed Commissioner Kenneth Mayfield's phrase about a "black hole" was racially insensitive."

This guy is a judge. No kidding. A judge.

It's a good thing the commissioner didn't complain about the court costs being 'niggardly'.

A few comments to Senator Ken Salazar

Ken Salazar, in the Pueblo Chieftain today:

"Where was Hank Paulson for the past year when middle-America has been going through a home foreclosure crisis? Where was President Bush?" Ken Salazar asked Wednesday. "Back then, they were saying all the economy's fundamentals were strong. Were they distorting the reality for the public or were they just wrong? Now they want more money than we've spent on the entire war in Iraq," the senator said.

The past year? Ken, you should be ashamed of yourself. Do you really think your constituents are that stupid? You say they are 'angry'? You have no idea...

The economy, the American worker, the spirit of America, has been and remains strong, Senator. Why don't you go take a read of Franklin D. Roosevelt's first inaugural address and refresh your view of this country. You obviously need it.

As for that inane 'the past year' comment...let me do a little refreshing for you:

On September 30, 1999 - during the Clinton administration - this article appeared in the New York Times:

Fannie Mae, the nation's biggest underwriter of home mortgages, has been under increasing pressure from the Clinton Administration to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people . . . ''Fannie Mae has expanded home ownership for millions of families in the 1990's by reducing down payment requirements,'' said Franklin D. Raines, Fannie Mae's chairman and chief executive officer. ''Yet there remain too many borrowers whose credit is just a notch below what our underwriting has required who have been relegated to paying significantly higher mortgage rates in the so-called subprime market.'' Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980's. ''From the perspective of many people, including me, this is another thrift industry growing up around us,'' said Peter Wallison a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. ''If they fail, the government will have to step up and bail them out the way it stepped up and bailed out the thrift industry.'' . . .

and then this pearl from the May 25, 2001 edition of the New York Times:

Traditional power centers in Washington, like organized labor and the government-sponsored enterprises (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac), will now have important political allies back in positions of leadership in the Senate after coming under heavy assault by the Republicans.

The NYT is referring to the Democrats in the Senate. Those are the 'important political allies'. It refers to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac 'coming under heavy assault by the Republicans'? Why? For the sloppy, shoddy way they were doing business, a sloppy, shoddy way of doing business that 'important political allies', the Democrats, covered and protected.

And that, Senator, is why we are in the mess we are in today.

Now, Senator, if you will examine postings here of the last week or ten days, you will find a number of references that show that the Bush administration has tried on several occasions to get something done about what is described above. But your party, the Democrats, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Barack Obama...you, Senator...have all been part and parcel to blocking any of that. Just like it says in the May 25, 2001 edition of the New York Times. 'Last year' my Aunt Mae's Fannie.

I don't know if you are just that arrogant, Senator, or that stupid, or both, to make a comment like that today and then expect it to be swallowed without question.

There is more, Senator. This one is from the LA Times, back in May of 1999:

Under Clinton, bank regulators have breathed the first real life into enforcement of the Community Reinvestment Act, a 20-year-old statute meant to combat “redlining” by requiring banks to serve their low-income communities. The administration also has sent a clear message by stiffening enforcement of the fair housing and fair lending laws. The bottom line: Between 1993 and 1997, home loans grew by 72% to blacks and by 45% to Latinos, far faster than the total growth rate. Lenders also have opened the door wider to minorities because of new initiatives at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac–the giant federally chartered corporations that play critical, if obscure, roles in the home finance system. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac buy mortgages from lenders and bundle them into securities; that provides lenders the funds to lend more. In 1992, Congress mandated that Fannie and Freddie increase their purchases of mortgages for low-income and medium-income borrowers. Operating under that requirement, Fannie Mae, in particular, has been aggressive and creative in stimulating minority gains. It has aimed extensive advertising campaigns at minorities that explain how to buy a home and opened three dozen local offices to encourage lenders to serve these markets. Most importantly, Fannie Mae has agreed to buy more loans with very low down payments–or with mortgage payments that represent an unusually high percentage of a buyer’s income. That’s made banks willing to lend to lower-income families they once might have rejected.

That's the Clinton administration, Senator, the Democrats - you and yours - mandating those loans to poorly qualified and otherwise (common sense-wise) unqualified buyers. The past year? Get real, Senator. If you are going to stand there and tell me how you're going to screw me, at least do without lying through your teeth. Senator, you are either a shameless liar or the dumbest buffoon to ever sit a Senate seat. Which is it?

While you're giving that question some thought, why don't you and Chris Dodd and Barney Frank and Barack Obama all take a vacation on my dime in some sweet little Caribbean resort? You've earned it. Screwing We the People as badly as you have and then managing to come out of it smelling like a rose must be exhausting. While you are at it, take James Johnson and Franklin Raines with you.

The taxpayers are 'angry'? The citizens are 'angry'? The voters are 'angry'? You don't know the half of it.

Alcee Hastings on Palin, Jews, and 'Blacks'

ABC News' Teddy Davis Reports: Florida Democratic Congressman Alcee Hastings pointed to Sarah Palin on Wednesday to rally Jews to Obama.

"If Sarah Palin isn’t enough of a reason for you to get over whatever your problem is with Barack Obama, then you damn well had better pay attention," said Hastings. "Anybody toting guns and stripping moose don’t care too much about what they do with Jews and blacks. So, you just think this through."

Hastings, who is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, made his comments in Washington, D.C., while participating in a panel discussion sponsored by the National Jewish Democratic Council.

Well. Perhaps we should have Hastings on the crew to solve the fiscal 'issues', given his clarity of thought.

"Maintain present course and increase speed..."

Barney Frank and other Democrats who were deeply involved in the buildup to today's financial crisis did everything they could to obfuscate and hide the building disaster. It's like the captain of the Titanic, having been advised of the iceberg, saying, "There is no danger, continue on present course and increase speed."

On September 11, 2003, Barney Frank is quoted in the New York Times as saying:

"These two entities -- Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- are not facing any kind of financial crisis," said Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts, the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee. "The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing."

He said that despite findings of shoddy accounting by oversight agencies.

By Christmas 2004 the rats were fleeing the sinking ship, though on the Titanic, they went down with it. Read this article from the Washington Post:

Fannie Mae's top executives leaving firm

Some excerpts:

The government-sponsored company has been on the defensive since September, when OFHEO alleged that Fannie had systematically manipulated accounting estimates, ignored accounting requirements it had lobbied unsuccessfully against and operated with weak internal controls that helped obscure the other problems. The report said Fannie Mae delayed booking $200 million of expenses in 1998, which allowed Raines and other top executives to receive millions of dollars in bonuses linked to Fannie's profit.

and

Raines, 55, is one of the most prominent African Americans in corporate America. He rose from a family that supplemented work with welfare to become a Rhodes scholar, president of the Harvard University Board of Overseers, director of the Office of Management and Budget under President Bill Clinton and a leader of the Washington business community. His compensation last year, including $3 million in stock options, totaled about $20 million.

Do you see that? Another annointed Democrat with the right connections got himself a golden parachute and raped Fannie Mae. And got away with it. And now, he is up to his ears with Barney Frank and Chris Dodd in the bailout? Is that not like putting Charles Manson as lead detective on the Sharon Tate murders?

If you think you're getting screwed now, you just wait...you ain't seen nuthin' yet.

9/24/08

The Barney Frank Snow Job

On September 11, 2003 the New York times ran an article in which this was the opening line:

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

The Bush plan was to create a new agency within the Treasury Department to oversee Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. "To assume supervision" of them.

According to the New York Times, the proposed plan was an admission that oversight of the two agencies, which at that time were carrying $1.5 trillion in outstanding debt (yes, Virginia, that is 'trillion'). The Times also reported on the finding of outside investigators in July of 2003 that executives in Freddie Mac had manipulated its accounting to mislead investors and that Fannie Mae did not adequately hedge against rising interest rates. And, the oversight committee then in charge of monitoring Freddie and Fannie had previously found that Jim Johnson and Franklin Raines had received obscenely large bonuses not because they had 'earned' them, but because of improper accounting of $200 million in expenses. Had that $200 million (yes, Virginia, that's $200 million, with six zeroes, not much compared to $700 billion but still a lot in the minds of we hicks from the sticks) been properly reported they would not have received those bonuses. Those bonuses were paid out with our tax dollars.

But I digress. It's easy to do, following the shenanigans behind all this. The Democrats, however, were against that plan proposed by George Bush, five years ago this month.

"These two entities -- Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- are not facing any kind of financial crisis," said Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts, the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee. "The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing."

Yes. Congressman Barney Frank. The fellow who is out there posturing and pandering and expressing outrage at President Bush over the current situation. That guy. Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee. The same fellow who yesterday said, of President's Bush summons to the White House of Senators McCain and Obama:

"We're going to have to interrupt a negotiating session tomorrow between the Democrats and Republicans on a bill where I think we are getting pretty close, and troop down to the White House for their photo op," said Frank, the House Financial Services Committee chairman. "I wish they'd checked with us." Barney Frank thinks the meeting between the President and the two candidates and other 'leaders' is a 'distraction'. A distraction? From what? People finding out just how deeply involved in the cause of the fiscal mess the Democrats really are?

But back to 2003, when Barney Frank said:

"The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing."

What is "affordable housing"? How is housing made "affordable" when mortgages are let to people who do not have the financial resources to make the payments? That was what Fannie and Freddie were doing. They were driven by the Community Reinvestment Act which had been signed into law by President Clinton. Actually, the CRA was modified by Clinton, 'liberalized' to extend credit to even more at-risk borrowers. The CRA was originally passed under the Carter Administration in 1977. But because of Clinton's expansion of CRA, banks were forced - required - to make loans to even more people who under normal banking policy would never have qualified for such mortgages. There was no verification of income or assets. There was little or no evaluation of the borrower's ability to make payments. There was often no down payment. Would you loan someone money under those circumstances? I didn't think so. But the Democrats did, via the Community Reinvestment Act. "Community Reinvestment" to me is cutting my taxes so I have more money to put back into the economy, to make it work. "Community Reinvestment" is most emphatically not my loaning money to people who have no way of paying it back, other than by taking the money of my neighbors and giving it to me. And that is exactly what this bailout is going to do. Where were we...ah...the CRA:

One school of thought holds that there were a number of banks - about half - which were not subject to CRA requirements, yet they too made a substantial number of very shaky loans. Economist Thomas DiLorenzo, a professor at Loyola, disputes this as a cover story for CRA, noting that CRA loans have caused billions of dollars of debt. DiLorenzo has written an article, "The CRA Scam and its defenders" which you might find interesting. You can find it here:

http://mises.org/story/2963

DiLorenzo has also written "The government-created subprime mortgage meltdown" which covers the unsavory activities of fiscal 'extortionist' organizations that fed off the CRA in the guise of creating "affordable housing". That article is here:

http://www.lewrockwell.com/dilorenzo/dilorenzo125.html

The bottom line is that Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Franklin Raines, and other Democrats have done everything they can to set up the current crisis.

That they now posture, pander, and express outrage at the administration is really the greatest outrage, that and the fact they fully expect We the People to buy their self-serving melodramatics.

They think you are stupid beyond belief.

And if Barack Obama is not aware of this, then he too is either stupid beyond belief and therefore undeserving of being elected to the Presidency...or he joins Frank, Dodd, and the rest in thinking that you are the dumbest critter in the land and will buy their nonsense. I submit that in either case, he is undeserving of the Presidency.

Gored

Al Gore is urging 'civil disobedience' to prevent the construction of coal-fired power plants that do not have 'carbon capture and sequestration'.

He did that at the Clinton Global Initiative in Manhattan, today.

It's also known as 'carbon capture and storage', or CSS, and it is an untried technology, with but one power plant using it, and that one came on line this month. This is a test plant.

Here is one view of why CSS won't 'save us'. It's from Treehugger.com:

Why Carbon Sequestration won't save us

It requires about 25% more energy to compress and liquify the captured CO2 so that it can be pumped back underground into porous rock structures. But first, it must be transported to the sequestration site. That requires pipelines. So, typically this and other new technologies will increase the price of power from such a plant by 20%-90%.

Al Gore wants young people to engage in 'civil disobedience.' And presumably go to jail. To accomplish what?

Meanwhile, he is flitting about the world in his private jet.

Flit. That's a good word for it.

Joltin' Joe the Coal Miner

By now everyone has undoubtedly heard Joe Biden tell voters in Maumee, Ohio that he is against clean coal plants here in the United States. He wants to send the technology over to China and let them build plants there.

I don't know how that is going to help high electricity costs here.

The Lamar re-powering project is converting the Lamar power plant from natural gas fuel to clean coal technology fueling. It is almost ready to come on line.

Remember your last electric bill? How high it suddenly became? That was because of cost pass-throughs due to the huge rise in natural gas costs.

This is the reason ARPA, the Arkansas River Power Authority, in which the Smile Hi City is a key player, launched the Lamar re-powering project. As Barack Obama says, "We are the Saudi Arabia of coal." He is absolutely right.

The Lamar plant uses clean coal technology. It is, in fact, truly clean, both physically and regarding emissions. It is not the smoke and cinder-belching plant of yesteryear.

So why is Joltin' Joe saying "no clean coal plants in the United States"?

What is Governor Ritter's position on Joltin' Joe's comments? Has Governor Ritter changed his position as outlined in his Colorado Climate Action Plan back in November 2007? There, he wrote:

"The plan includes a strong plea, voiced also by the bipartisan Western Governor's Association, for an accelerated round of federal investments to deploy clean coal technologies."

Does that still stand? Or do party loyalties change the game?



New Mexican hazing case

Here is an interesting story from down in New Mexico:

Horrific Highschool Hazing Case Shakes New Mexico Town

An excerpt:

LAS VEGAS, N.M. — It was shocking enough when six high school football players were accused of sodomizing six younger teammates with a broomstick during training camp. But the scandal was raised to a whole new level when the coaches were accused of turning a blind eye to the hazing.

School superintendent Rick Romero said:

"We were doing things based on the best information we had," he said. "At that time, neither I nor the athletic director, nor, I believe, the head coach knew the degree of the severity of the actions."

From the article, it is easy to conclude that they didn't want to know.

Does this sound vaguely familiar?

This is why the 'hazing' case up at the Kiva is important.

Some people say, "Well, we went through hazing when we were kids. These new kids should suck it up."

But things aren't like they used to be. When I was a kid, I went squirrel or quail hunting every day after school during the season. I would walk right down the street in our neighborhood with either a .22 rifle or a 16 gauge shotgun over my shoulder. It never crossed my mind to do anything else than get out there in those beautiful eastern North Carolina fields and woods and go hunting.

If we saw a schoolkid walking down the street today with a gun, what would be the reaction? And why?

It's the same thing with hazing, though there are plenty of examples over the years of hazing getting out of control. Too many kids don't know when to stop. In the Kiva case we had threats of forcing the victim to perform oral sex on the perpetrators.

Why? At what point does one of these so-called 'youth leaders' step over the line and actually commit the act. Do we really want to wait for it to happen and then say, "Oh! We are shocked! We can't believe it! How could this happen?"

Ask the people in Las Vegas, New Mexico, how it could happen.

It happens by turning a blind eye to the warning signs.

It also happens when you turn a blind eye to it because the organization in question is a sacred cow that brings in a lot of visitors and money. Is that really more important than the welfare of the children entrusted to the organization?

It kind of reminds me of the mayor of Amity in "Jaws": "Open those beaches! There is no shark! We're losing money!"

Meanwhile, six kids down in New Mexico got broomsticks shoved up their asses.

Believe that.

The FBI Probe

News this morning is that the FBI is investigating 26 firms for possible mortgage fraud and other high crimes and misdemeanors.

It's about time. The accounting practices of Fannie Mae during the Jim Johnson regime alone are enough to raise both eyebrows and questions. When you can hide away $200 million in 'expenses' as part of a scheme to make yourself eligible for substantial bonuses, as did Johnson and later his successor Raines...well...let's go back to our roadkill skunk.

Meanwhile, as part of the continuing smokescreen to hide the deep involvement of the Democrats as they dug into our pockets through Fannie and Freddie, there is a report out about a connection between McCain campaign manager Rick Davis and money from Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.

In this case, Freddie and Fannie contracted with Davis' firm to provide services, up front and by contract. The amount is $15,000/month. So the issue is not that Davis has been pocketing sleaze money, but that he has been pocketing part of that since taking a leave of absence from the firm to run McCain's (Johnny Mac? Goes well with Freddie Mac...) campaign. There's nothing there even remotely resembling the accounting two-step set up by Johnson and Raines, with the support and knowledge of Chris Dobb of the Senate Banking Committee or Barney Frank of the House Banking Committee...both long term recipients of 'free' money - some would say 'kickbacks' - from not only Freddie and Fannie but also Lehman Brothers.

That report may be found here:

McCain's Aide's firm paid by Freddie and Fannie

9/23/08

The Chieftain figures it out

The Chieftain has a good editorial on the current fiscal hysteria:

Real Money

an excerpt:

One of the erstwhile fathers of that failure was the 1997 Community Reinvestment Act. Signed into law by President Clinton, the law compels banks to make loans to poor borrowers who often cannot repay them. This feeding frenzy worked its way up the economic ladder to people of higher incomes who also were allowed to borrow above their repayment capacity.

These factors led to many of the foreclosures and bad paper now clogging the mortgage industry. As noted here previously, it was the self-same Barney Frank who fought meaningful reforms of mortgage giants Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac. That failure resulted earlier this month in the federal bailout of those two companies.

We refer you back to the original Blogger Central post on this, just in case you missed it:

The real culprits in this meltdown

Joltin' Joe staves off the Taliban

In his address to the National Guard Association in Delaware yesterday, Vice Presidential nominee Joe Biden came up with this:

"Ladies and gentlemen, where are we now? Where are we now?" Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., said to the National Guard Association today, talking about the war in Afghanistan. "If you want to know where Al Qaeda lives, you want to know where Bin Laden is, come back to Afghanistan with me," Biden said. "Come back to the area where my helicopter was forced down, with a three-star general and three senators at 10,500 feet in the middle of those mountains. I can tell you where they are."

Like, wowsers! Sounds like Joe Biden was in the thick of it!

There is a problem, however.

Joe implies that his helicopter was forced down by the Taliban. Visions of flak; SAM's screaming by on plumes of fire; RPG's whizzing through the open doors of the chopper. That sort of thing.

Nay, not so. Because, you see, the helicopter was socked in by weather, and the pilot put it down in a nice safe place so as not to hazard the VIP's aboard. It's true. It was reported in the news so it must be true.

From John Kerry, who was on the same helicopter at the same time:

"The weather closed in on us," Kerry told the AP at the time in a phone interview from Turkey. "It went pretty blind, pretty fast and we were around some pretty dangerous ridges. So the pilot exercised his judgment that we were better off putting down there, and we all agreed...We sat up there and traded stories." Kerry joked, "We were going to send Biden out to fight the Taliban with snowballs, but we didn't have to do it…Other than getting a little cold, it was fine."

We have a couple of other observations, too:

First, the National Guard doesn't have to 'go back' with Joltin' Joe. They are already there, and have been for quite some time.Second, Joe makes it sound like he had some personal contact with the Taliban, as he addresses the Guard in manly manner:
"If you want to know where Al Qaeda lives, you want to know where Bin Laden is, come back to Afghanistan with me..."

What next? A book written along the line of "Back to Bataan"?

From one of our sources:
"I wonder if the Taliban who forced Biden's chopper down were the same snipers who shot at Hillary in Bosnia."

9/22/08

The Golden Parachute

Here's a great article from WaPo:

Hard landing for the golden parachute

wherein it describes how Secretary of the Treasury Paulson has been going around trying to finagle a way for all those overpaid, thieving, corrupt fiscal whores who have driven their companies to bankruptcy, to keep their millions and millions.

He was, of course, jeered by all manner of Democrats, including chairman of the House Banking Committee Barney Frank (D-Mass); Chuck Schumer (D-NY); Jim Webb (D-Va).

Well, they are right, of course.

It's just too bad they didn't have that attitude back when their fellow Democrats were raping Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Saracuda and the rape kits

So...now we're hearing that under the Palin administration, the Wasilla police department charged rape victims for the rape kits/exams and that somehow Palin was responsible, and that this shows that she cares not for victims.

Obama has offered no proof of any of this. How many victims were charged for kits and exams under the Palin administration? The Obama campaign cannot tell us. How many rapes were committed? They have not indicated.

However, we have this letter submitted by the current mayor as the result of open records requests, and currently posted on the Wasilla city website:

CITY OF WASILLA
Office of the Mayor
290 East Herning Avenue
Wasilla, Alaska 99654-7091

RE: Billing of sexual assault victims for forensic exams

The Finance Department searched all financial records on our system for fiscal year 2000, 2001 and 2002. There are no records of billings to or collections from rape victims or their insurance companies in our system. The financial computer system goes back to the beginning of fiscal year 2000, and accounts receivable backup documentation goes back six (6) years per our records retention schedule.

A review of files and case reports within the Wasilla Police Department has found no record of sexual assault victims billed for forensic exams. State law AS 18.68.040, which was effective 8/14/2000, would have prohibited any such billings after that date.

Statistics for sexual assaults reported can be found in the police section of the City of Wasilla website at http://www.cityofwasilla.com/index.aspx?page=103.

Thank you,
Mayor Dianne M. Keller

'Files and case reports within the Wasilla Police Department' would go back several years. Quite a few years for sexual assault records. In Colorado's Municipal Records Retention Schedule, Schedule 17, such records must be retained for 50 years, except for those involving juveniles, which must be retained permanently. Similarly, by the Alaskan Local Government Records Retention Schedule, investigation files are retained permanently. So it is apparent that when Mayor Keller says 'A review of files and case reports within the Wasilla Police Department has found no record of sexual assault victims billed for forensic exams', that includes the time frame when Palin was mayor.

So. There you have it. You can check the number of sexual assaults reported during Palin's watch on the Wasilla city website link shown above. Of course, we don't know how many of those were 'rape'. Sexual assault includes a multitude of sins, including rape.

Senators Call for Taxpayer Protection, Stronger Oversight, in Financial Crisis Response

Here is a copy of a letter being sent to Senate Banking Committee chairman Chris Dodd and Ranking Member Dick Shelby. Note the signatories. Note the use of the phrase 'golden parachute', which we used in the post, Wealthy Democrats want to have their cake and eat it, too.

For the general fund of knowledge, Senator Chris Dodd, chair of the Senate Banking Committee and a Democrat, is the top recipient of campaign kickbacks...uh...payoffs...uh...contributions from Fannie Mae and number four over atLehman Brothers. All of the signatories took contributions, but none were in Dodd's league or Obama's. Obama was number two on the list of largesse received from Fannie Mae and number two on the list from Lehman Brothers, even though he has only been in the senate for three years.

It looks like having been caught with their Democratic fingers in the shrouds of the Democrats' favorite Golden Parachute, and realizing that the Golden Goose is about to be slaughtered, they want to be seen as wielding the axe. Well...that's great...but Jim Johnson and other Democratic party favorites have already cleaned out about all they can.

Makes for good press, though, doncher think, if you don't know about the Democrats' involvement in Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and Lehman Bros?

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, United States Senator Ken Salazar joined several of his colleagues in outlining a plan to strengthen the Administration's proposed response to the financial crisis that is gripping Wall Street and affecting millions of middle-class families. "American families are rightly concerned about the impact a worsening financial crisis would have on their savings, their home values, and on their economic security," said Sen. Salazar. "They are also rightly concerned about the risks that the Administration's proposal carries for taxpayers. Taxpayers want – and deserve – the strongest protections and oversight possible." In a letter to Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd and Ranking Member Richard Shelby, Sen. Salazar and his colleagues call for drafting a bill that: 1) minimizes taxpayer liability; 2) helps middle class families weather the storm; and 3) contains regulatory reforms and improved oversight. The text of the letter is below. Dear Chairman Dodd and Ranking Member Shelby: As the Senate crafts a legislative proposal to respond to the recent instability in the financial sector, we believe that we must focus our efforts on drafting a bill that minimizes taxpayer liability; directs as much assistance as possible toward Americans on Main Street, to improve the economy and create jobs, rather than just the corporate titans on Wall Street; and contains regulatory reforms that reduce the chance of a future financial crisis of this magnitude. While there are additional ideas that some of us feel strongly about, we agree on the following and we urge that they be addressed in the legislation: Financial protection for taxpayers 1) The taxpayers should not be expected to bear all of the risk with little or no prospect for real gain from each of these transactions. That is a path that limits the recovery of the taxpayers money. As was the case in the assistance provided to AIG and the government –sponsored enterprises, taxpayers should share in the likely equity improvements of companies relieved of impaired assets. This is especially true if those assets underperform. The taxpayers are being placed at considerable risk and they deserve to see the recovery of their tax dollars. 2) For companies that receive assistance; there should be limits placed on dividends, key executives should have a look back provision placed on their compensation and there should be a prohibition of golden parachutes. Helping Main Street and Consumers 1) There should be an economic stimulus package to help create jobs and spur local economies. 2) There should be reforms of credit card practices to better protect the consumer, reducing the chance of a future financial crisis. 3) The bill should provide increased aid to financially stressed homeowners borne by the industry to help homeowners and reduce foreclosures. Regulatory reform 1) There should be a regulator of the financial markets focused on protecting the consumer. 2) There should be changes in corporate governance to improve the independence of corporate boards to reduce reckless behavior. 3) There should be limits placed on speculative behavior in the markets. We appreciate your consideration of these crucial issues. Sincerely Senator Tom Harkin Senator Ken Salazar Senator Jim Webb Senator Bill Nelson Senator Amy Klobuchar

Coming to grips with the vital issues of the day

Now the Democrats are vapor-locking over the fact that the McCains own thirteen cars.

So what. I know people here in the Smile Hi City who own a bunch of cars, and spend a bunch of money working on them and restoring them. Those people who come to the Smile Hi City to do their racing own a bunch of cars, some of them quite a few, but we don't seem to find that objectionable when they spend their money in our motels and restaurants.

Here is an excerpt from an article on the latest Obama ad:

A Newsweek article published on the magazine's Web Site Sunday said registration records show the McCains currently own 13 cars — two of which are foreign-made: a Honda and a Volkswagen. That appears to contradict the Republican presidential nominee's past statements he only buys cars made in America. (Cindy McCain also drives a Lexus and daughter Meghan owns a Toyota Prius, but neither are registered to the McCains.)

Newsweek also reported Barack Obama owns one car: a Ford Escape Hybrid.

In a quickly-arranged conference call organized by the Democratic National Committee, United Auto Worker Union President Ron Gettelfinger — an Obama supporter — said the registration records show McCain is not being truthful with Americans and undermining autoworkers.

Oh, Ron, you sneakly little weasel...yes, I said that. I'll repeat it: Ron, you sneaky little weasel. Ron, where are the top three cars used by American police departments made? The Ford Crown Vic, the Chevrolet Impala, and the Dodge Charger? By their content, none of them qualify as 'American'. You should know that as President of UAW. If you don't, that makes you an ignorant dolt. If you do, that makes you a lying weasel who obviously thinks the American people are stupid enough to buy into your nonsense. Or are America's cops undermining the American worker, too? BTW, Ron, let me remind you of your comments to the Senate Democratic Manufacturing Summit on June 6, 2007. Here is an excerpt:

"For example, although the Ford Escape Hybrid is assembled in Kansas City by UAW members, it has much lower domestic content that a traditional Ford Escape, because the key hybrid components all come from Japan. In our judgment, there is no reason why these components cannot be built in this country."

Barack Obama, according to the Obama campaign ad, drives a Ford Escape Hybrid. Are you now telling us, Ron, that the Escape Hybrid is OK? With about 40% of its content 'domestic made'? And that includes made in Canada. That thing in no way qualifies as 'American-made'.

Here are your comments in full, Ron, right off the UAW website:

Comments by UAW President Ron Gettelfinger at the Senate Democratic Manufacturing Summit

Check this article:

Defining an American car, which is but one of many on the same subject, with similar content.

Then let's go back to this previous post on this very subject of "American made":

The Great American Yardsale

An excerpt:

"Made in America" has been something of a joke for quite some time now. "I drive an American car. I drive a Ford!" says one all-American patriot. Yet if you go to the Ford website, you see they have Mazda and Volvo. Or do Mazda and Volvo have Ford? The Toyota Sienna has about 80% domestic (US) made content. So does the Tundra. But the Ford Escape is down to 65% for 2008, and the Edge has dropped to 70%. So if something as all-American as the automobile is of mixed-race, so to speak, why shouldn't most everything else be as well? Not to worry, however. Volkswagen needs to build cars cheaply, so it will use American labor in a Tennessee plant. They want to export Volkswagens to...Europe.

You can't tell by the name what's "American made" these days. Obama talks about a 'shrinking' world' and a 'global economy' when it suits him, but he'll also play that "American made" nationalism...when it suits him.

Obviously Ron Gettelfinger and the Obama campaign think that We the People are dumber than a dried up cow pie, which is why they are publishing this manure as campaign ads.

9/21/08

Chieftain "wholeheartedly endorses McCain/Palin"

An excerpt from the endorsement editorial:

TWO MONTHS ago political pundits of all stripes were conceding this year’s presidential election to Democrat Barack Obama. His Republican rival, John McCain, was behind in fundraising and seemed to lack the “buzz” enjoyed by his opponent.

But things have changed, and now it seems that the race is too close to call. It’s being called “the most interesting election” or “one of the most interesting elections” people can recall. We’ll attribute that hyperbole to our short national attention spans.

What matters most are the real differences between Sen. Obama and Sen. McCain. The differences in policy and in political philosophy are chasmic - so much so that there is a clear choice: Sen. John McCain.

The rest is here:

The Presidency

The real culprits in this meltdown

From Investors Business Daily by way of Red Planet:


Investors Business Daily: The Real Culprits In This Meltdown.

Big Government: Barack Obama and Democrats blame the historic financial turmoil on the market. But if it’s dysfunctional, Democrats during the Clinton years are a prime reason for it…

[I]t was the Clinton administration, obsessed with multiculturalism, that dictated where mortgage lenders could lend, and originally helped create the market for the high-risk subprime loans now infecting like a retrovirus the balance sheets of many of Wall Street’s most revered institutions.

Tough new regulations forced lenders into high-risk areas where they had no choice but to lower lending standards to make the loans that sound business practices had previously guarded against making. It was either that or face stiff government penalties.

The untold story in this whole national crisis is that President Clinton put on steroids the Community Redevelopment Act, a well-intended Carter-era law designed to encourage minority homeownership. And in so doing, he helped create the market for the risky subprime loans that he and Democrats now decry as not only greedy but “predatory”…

Obama and Democrats on the Hill think even more regulation and more interference in the market will solve the problem their policies helped cause. For now, unarmed by the historic record, conventional wisdom is buying into their blame-business-first rhetoric and bigger-government solutions.

While government arguably has a role in helping low-income folks buy a home, Clinton went overboard by strong-arming lenders with tougher and tougher regulations, which only led to lenders taking on hundreds of billions in subprime bilge.

Market failure? Hardly. Once again, this crisis has government’s fingerprints all over it.