All the News That's Fit to be Tied

I have an axe to grind, but unlike the New York Times, I freely admit it.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Giannoulias, Goldman-Sachs: Bookends

Many are now saying the Federal shutdown of the Broadway Bank in Chicago is the end of Alexi Giannoulias' campaign for the U.S. Senate seat once held by Barack Obama. While he might be right in saying "There was no bailout for my father's bank," the closing of the bank exemplifies the entire banking problem that led to the mortgage meltdown: "This bank has helped thousands of people when no one else would give them a chance," Giannoulias said. You can find many culprits in the financial meltdown, but the basic problem stemmed from lending money to people who had no prospect of ever paying it back. In practical terms the Giannoulias family-owned bank made loans that could not be repaid and sold those loans to brokerage houses who sold them to investors. Each person in the chain took his piece of the action and the last guy on line was left holding the bag. In the end the Giannnoulias family will lose millions and the taxpayers of American will pay the rest. Sound familiar? Ever hear of Goldman-Sachs, AIG, CitiBank, Fannie-Mae?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

You have been Enronned

As usual the President never fails to disappoint me. Behind the soft chatter and the wagging finger pointed at Wall Street traders Mr. Obama once again spoke to a crowd in Cooper Union’s Great Hall consisting mostly of supporters and students. Unlike President Lincoln, Obama prefers to speak to children and others who will not object to his meaningless blather that is merely salve to a nation that has been savaged and Enronned to death by Wall Street and worse, by a government that once belonged to the people of the United States. From the Wall Street Journal: “While the crowd, comprising mostly students and supporters, was largely receptive, the Wall Street executives filling the first three rows were considerably more subdued. Their hands remained in their laps when the president spoke of a bank fee to recover outstanding bailout funds and his plea to call off the industry lobbyists.” The Streets giants like Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley and others partnered with pseudo “private” agencies like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to sell their debt equity to unwary investors in a way that made analyzing the entire investment bundle impossible. It worked until the housing bubble burst. The house of cards began to fall and with it all the financial bedsores became visible. In came the American taxpayer. Asked to make the sacrifice that was required to keep the fat cats alive and system afloat the American taxpayer complied and will now have to pay for the next twenty years while the Nero’s of the world play on. It is clear to most of the financial experts that a sloth-like government will never catch a fleet-footed Wall Street trader unless it ties them up. It’s hard to believe that a President who has taken a Million in campaign contributions and a Democratic Congress that has taken $4.5 million in contributions from Goldman Sachs alone will produce any legislation that will bind the hands of Wall Street’s giant traders. It is clear that many small firms are headed to the chopping block, but those that made the greatest profits and biggest bonuses with taxpayer money will continue to borrow cheap and go long. America your President has sold you out. You have been Enronned.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

A Funny Thing Happened

Just this past weekend two funny things happened. The first thing was that the President lied on his census form. According to an article in The New York Times the President claimed he was black on his census form and made no mention of his mixed raced heritage. It seems to me that at the very least the President should fill out his form honestly if he expects others to be honest also. The second thing was that less than a week after it was revealed he and his family had not chosen a church since they moved to Washington he showed up with his family for Easter Services at a "historically" black church in a southeast section of the District. Both these things seem out of character for the Obama that has inhabited the White House. We were lead to believe this is not a man who wears his race on his sleeve. We were wrong. We were also led to believe he was man who could be fair. His failure to note his mixed racial heritage on his census form shows he is not.