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Obama Scores Another Victory--as Senate Passes a Finance Reform Bill

  1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
    Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago

    SENATE PASSES SWEEPING FINANCE REFORM BILL 59-39

    The Senate on Thursday approved a far-reaching financial regulatory bill, putting Congress on the brink of approving a broad expansion of government oversight of the increasingly complex banking industry and financial markets.

    The legislation is intended to prevent a repeat of the 2008 crisis, but also reshapes the role of numerous federal agencies, and vastly empowers the Federal Reserve, in an attempt to predict and contain future debacles.

    The vote was 59 to 39.

    Democratic Congressional leaders and the Obama administration must now work to combine the Senate measure with a version approved by the House in December, a process that is expected to take several weeks and be completed after Memorial Day.

    While there are important differences — notably a Senate provision that would force big banks to spin off some of their most lucrative derivatives business into separate subsidiaries — the bills are broadly similar, making it virtually certain that Congress will adopt the most sweeping regulatory overhaul since the aftermath of the Great Depression.

    Stock markets, which dropped sharply on Thursday over concerns that the European debt crisis would weigh on the American economic recovery, briefly regained some lost ground as progress in the Senate indicated an end to the uncertainty around the financial regulatory debate. But the indexes quickly resumed their downward slide and closed down nearly 4 percent for the day.

    Enactment of the bill would be a signature achievement for the White House, on par with the recently enacted health care law. President Obama, speaking in the Rose Garden on Thursday afternoon, declared victory over the financial industry and “hordes of lobbyists” that he said had tried to kill the legislation.

    “The recession we’re emerging from was primarily caused by a lack of responsibility and accountability from Wall Street to Washington,” Mr. Obama said. “That’s why I made passage of Wall Street reform one of my top priorities as president, so that a crisis like this does not happen again.”

    The president also signaled that he would take a strong hand in developing the final bill, which could mean changes to restrictions on derivatives trading that the Senate measure includes and Wall Street opposes. It is also likely that the administration will seek to wipe out a special exemption passed by the House that would shelter auto dealers from oversight by an entirely new consumer protection agency. Earlier, Mr. Obama had sharply criticized the provision as a “special loophole” that would hurt car buyers.

    As the Senate neared a final vote Thursday evening, Senator Sam Brownback, Republican of Kansas, withdrew an amendment that would have inserted into the Senate bill an exemption for auto dealers similar to the House version.

    Mr. Brownback’s move had the effect of killing an amendment by Senators Jeff Merkley, Democrat of Oregon, and Carl Levin, Democrat of Michigan. to bar banks from proprietary trading, or playing the markets with their own money -- a restriction generally known as the Volcker rule for the former Fed chairman Paul Volcker, who proposed the idea.

    The bill already contains a version of the Volcker rule, but the Merkley-Levin amendment would have gone farther in trying to prevent conflicts of interest between banks and their depository customers.

    Congressional Republican leaders, adopting an election-year strategy to oppose virtually every initiative supported by the Obama administration, voiced loud criticism of the legislation while trying to insist that they still wanted tougher policing of Wall Street. At first they tried to stop debate on the bill, and then relented after the government sued Goldman Sachs and Republicans felt their opposition was politically untenable.

    But while Republicans criticized the bill in mostly political terms, arguing that it was the latest example of Democrats trying to expand the size and scope of government, some experts have warned that the bill, by focusing too much on the causes of a past crisis, still leaves the financial system vulnerable to a major collapse in the future.

    The Senate bill, sponsored primarily by Senator Christopher J. Dodd, Democrat of Connecticut and chairman of the banking committee, seeks to curb abusive lending, particularly in the mortgage industry, by creating a powerful Bureau of Consumer Protection within the Federal Reserve to oversee nearly all consumer financial products.

    In response to the huge bailouts in 2008, the bill seeks to ensure that troubled companies, no matter how big or complex, can be liquidated at no cost to taxpayers. It would empower regulators to seize failing companies, break them apart, and sell off the assets, potentially wiping out shareholders and creditors to avoid any taxpayer expense.

    To coordinate efforts to identify risks to the financial system, the bill would create a “financial stability oversight council” composed of the Treasury secretary; the chairman of the Federal Reserve; the comptroller of the currency; the director of the new consumer financial protection bureau; the chairmen of the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency and an independent member appointed by the president.

    The bill would touch virtually every aspect of the financial industry. Hedge funds and most other private equity companies would be required to register for regulation by the Securities and Exchange Commission. And the bill would impose a thicket of rules for the trading of derivatives, the complex instruments at the center of the 2008 crisis.

    With limited exceptions, derivatives would have to be traded on a public exchange and cleared through a third party. Buyers and sellers of derivatives contracts, including existing contracts, would be required to post collateral to protect against potential default, a provision criticized by the legendary investor Warren E. Buffett.

    And under a controversial provision written by Senator Blanche L. Lincoln, Democrat of Arkansas, some of the biggest banks would be forced to spin off their trading in swaps, the most lucrative part of the derivatives business, into separate subsidiaries, or be denied access to the Fed’s emergency lending window.

    The banks are strongly opposed to that provision, and the administration has also said that it does not see a benefit in forcing the banks to give up their swaps business.

    Concern about the derivatives provisions also led Senator Maria Cantwell, Democrat of Washington, to vote on Wednesday and again Thursday against ending debate, saying it still included a dangerous loophole that would undermine efforts to regulate derivative trades. Senator Russ Feingold of Wisconsin was the other Democrat to oppose ending debate on the measure, saying it was not forceful enough in preventing risky behavior by financial companies.

    Among the differences between the House and Senate bills is the inclusion in the House measure of a $150 billion fund, to be financed by a fee on big banks, that would help pay for the future liquidation of failing financial companies.

    The administration opposes the fund, which it believes could hamper its ability to deal with a more costly collapse of a financial company. Republicans demanded that a similar $50 billion fund be removed from the Senate bill because they said it would encourage, rather than help prevent, future bailouts of failed financial companies.

    There are numerous other differences. For instance, the House bill addresses the consumer protection goals by establishing a stand-alone agency that would be subject to annual budget appropriations by Congress. The Senate bill establishes its consumer protection bureau within the Federal Reserve, limiting future Congressional oversight.

    Representative Barney Frank, Democrat of Massachusetts and chairman of the Financial Services Committee, said on Thursday that the bills would be reconciled in a formal conference proceeding, allowing for televised negotiations.

    Edward Wyatt contributed reporting.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/21/busin … te.html?hp

    1. Instrumentally profile image59
      Instrumentallyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Anything empowering the Federal Reserve is stupid. Why give the private entity responsible for this mess more power (shakes head only in America). Politicians think were stupid, and were not recovering from any recession how can you say that with a record amount of people on food stamps and unemployment so damn high. Come on you guys don't be so gullible. This Bill isn't the answer and will only make things much worse.

    2. prettydarkhorse profile image61
      prettydarkhorseposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Thnak you Sir for posting this one, I read through it and I learned a lot,
      Kudos to the Congress plus Pres. Obama -- and to all of us!

  2. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    Very informative Ralph. I hope the debate continues. The rest of the world needs to get on-board as well.

  3. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    Great, the neo-conservative wing just scored a brownie button. Now, can we get back to the REAL issues. Thanks Mr. Obama.

    BTW, that whole capitalistic variable you offered is nothing more than prejudice to social economics. Might want to cage the big hitters before you swing the bat at them. Just sayin`.

    Where are Tina Faye and Bill Moyer when we need them?

  4. alternate poet profile image78
    alternate poetposted 7 years ago

    Nice informative post again Ralph - I guess it will soon attract the one-liner dimwits who don't like information.

    The more real debate about corrupt financial systems the better.

    1. Bill Miller profile image59
      Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      "I guess it will soon attract the one-liner dimwits who don't like information."

      Hey, you're right, excellent one line you typed.

      1. alternate poet profile image78
        alternate poetposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Oh yes - but it was three lines, if you are going to make a career out of forum abuse you might like to learn to count.

        Now you could go and look at how Ralph and MikeNV do it - they discuss things - argue a lot, but discuss and give actual views and opinions.  Go on give it a try -

        1. Bill Miller profile image59
          Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          I will read there posts because they are exactly as you say they are, you on the other hand, well, you're special!

  5. profile image0
    Twenty One Daysposted 7 years ago

    Which will come from Fed Regulatory agencies and lobbyists or 'independent' insiders. So the tax payer gets slapped again and the government takes the profit. How much of the governing weight should the people bare? Seriously. They are already neck deep in taxation and governed financial disasters. There is little left for them to eat.

  6. lovemychris profile image79
    lovemychrisposted 7 years ago

    The rabid radio righties here in Mass are pissed off at Senator Brown!
    He voted for it!

    Guess they thought Independent meant Republican by a different name.

    Uh uh...he is living up to his label!@

    (unlike Lieberman, who is a Republican in disguise)

    But this is good news!   

    I just hope it doesn't get so watered down by the You Know Who's that there is no bite to the bark.

    Woo Hoooo--Go Obama!

  7. KFlippin profile image60
    KFlippinposted 7 years ago

    Dodd.  The great author of financial reform.  What will the history books spin about Mr. Dodd, the predominant author of the two greatest financial Acts in the history of the country, the first that sent us down this spiral that robbed us all blind of our life savings, and the second is supposed to pull us out and protect us.  Yeah. 

    One lined and dimwitted enough?

    1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Dodd bears some of the blame but he had a lot of help and actually was a minor character compared to Reagan, Bush I, Bush II, Greenspan, Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman, Paulson, Moody's, Standard and Poor, crooked mortgage brokers and appraisers, (Summers, Rubin, Clinton who repealed Glass Steagall) Goldman Sachs, Washington Mutual, Countrywide, Freddy and Fanny, home buyers and owners who used their houses as piggy banks. There's plenty of blame to go around.

      1. KFlippin profile image60
        KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        smile  That's pretty funny, a litany of Republicans are to blame, when it was under Clinton that Dodd saw to it that a new bill loosening broadly the regulatory control over US financial entities was passed, in lieu of GS.  Yeah. you wish you could get by with that level of obfuscation...... smile

      2. Bill Miller profile image59
        Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        But you don't blame the guy who signed it into law, why is that? Its funny how our legislative process works, a Congress and Senate pass a bill that goes to the President who actually has a choice whether he will sign a bill or not.

        Funny how you left Clinton out in your blame game, actually its typical!

        1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
          Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Read my comment again--I mentioned Rubin, Clinton and fatass Larry Summers. I don't remember why I put them in parenthesis. My intent certainly was not to leave them off the list of people who should be blamed, because they definitely are culpable. Aside from that, Mrs. Lincoln, Rubin was a good Sec. Treasury. He convinced Clinton to balance the budget.

          1. Doug Hughes profile image60
            Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Ralph - I don't think anyone is disputing that Clinton and democrats *participated* in bipartisan banking deregulation. And everyone seems to be in agreement that it was a major factor iin the economic meltdown.

            But we have conservatives dancing all around the fact that the effort to RE-regulate - which only makes sense - is being opposed by the GOP at the behest of Wall Street. It's pretty obvious, isn't it?

          2. Bill Miller profile image59
            Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            My apologies, you did indeed mention Clinton, I stand corrected.

            1. KFlippin profile image60
              KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Oh yeah, Rubin was a real champ of a secretary.......

              1. Bill Miller profile image59
                Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                Why are you addressing me with this?

            2. Ralph Deeds profile image71
              Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Accepted. Thanks.

  8. lovemychris profile image79
    lovemychrisposted 7 years ago

    He's trying to make amends now that he's leaving...they can't control him anymore.

    It's hard to fight the powers of evil money flippy.

    People go to great lengths to get it and keep it.

    You can't be too hard on those that see the error of their ways...it's the arrogant ones who never admit a mistake that suck.


    Or those that demonize people who are trying to make things better. (hint hint)

    1. KFlippin profile image60
      KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Hysterially funny.  Dodd has been in control, for years and years.  Maybe you two could chat about it in one of his vacation homes.

  9. lovemychris profile image79
    lovemychrisposted 7 years ago

    Flew right over your head huh? Swwwiiisssshhhhh

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Perhaps it should have been hint,hint,hint?

  10. Doug Hughes profile image60
    Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago

    With Wondewoman and Moosewoman and TK and Padrino, it's not about issues it's about people and labels. The democrats wrote and passed a good bill over the opposition of the GOP. So WW had to demonize the bill - not over content or flaws. It's from Dodd so it's evil evil evil!

    I would have to ask WW what she has asked so often in derision. Do you know what's in the bill? Would you know a derivative if it bit you on the fundemental? Do you have any idea how these financial instruments caused the recession? What about a credit default swap? Cash reserves? Leverage? Any idea how these thing played to bring the economy to its knees? Dodd and a bunch of Senators worked damn hard for to understand the dynamics of the failure before they wrote this bill. Perhaps you should do a little homework BEFORE mouthing witless platitudes abut Dodd that only expose your ignorance.

    1. KFlippin profile image60
      KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Yes, I do, I know it well and thoroughly.  Clearly, you do not. Nor are you aware that Chris Dodd was key to the repeal of Glass-Stegall and the new, highly loosened, federal regs that replaced it, the act had a nonsensical name that I forget. Clinton was even called to answer to that just in the last couple of weeks, and of course he said that he just really doesn't think the repeal of GS and the onset of his liberal financial regulatory bill that was supposed to help the consumer, what a joke,  had anything to do with the collapse of our economy....imagine that.

      WonderWoman...

      1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
        Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        I'm pretty  sure that I read or heard Clinton say that in retrospect repealing Glass Steagall was a mistake. He was urged to do so by Robert Rubin and the boy genius Larry Summers. I have no doubt that Dodd had a lot to do with it. He's been the Wall Street banksters' man in the Senate for a long time. However the government is the enemy theory started with Reagan and that little starve the beast guy, Grover Norquist.

        1. KFlippin profile image60
          KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          No, you did not, your recollection is quite incorrect.

          1. Doug Hughes profile image60
            Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            What President Clinton said -

            "On derivatives, yeah I think they were wrong and I think I was wrong to take [their advice] because the argument on derivatives was that these things are expensive and sophisticated and only a handful of investors will buy them and they don’t need any extra protection, and any extra transparency. The money they’re putting up guarantees them transparency,” Clinton told me.

            “And the flaw in that argument,” Clinton added, “was that first of all sometimes people with a lot of money make stupid decisions and make it without transparency.”

            http://blogs.abcnews.com/politicalpunch … ke-it.html

            1. Doug Hughes profile image60
              Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              For those who aren't following this, 'deregulation' has been a big, fat plank in the GOP platform for decades.  Clinton went along with deregualtion in banking 10 years ago. The point man for the legislation was Sen. Phil Graham (R- TX).

              The repeal of Glass-Stegall ten years ago laid the foundation for the fiancial abuse by the banks that brought  us the recession. That G-S contributed to the problem was observed by President Obama in a speech last year. Congress is trying to fix that gap in regulation, which even Captain America sees the virtue in.

              What they are mumbling and trying to obscure is the GOP obstruction of fixing the problem. The GOP voted 3 times to PREVENT discusion of financial reform. When it became obvious that they would get beat do death in the election for fighting Wall Street Reform, they allowed discussion int the Senate - and tried repeatedly to gut the legislation. When that diddn't pass they were going to try to fillibuster. And that didn't work because Scott Brown, the new teabagger senator from Massachusettes voted to break the fillibuster and voted FOR the legislation. SB is not FOR the democrats - he's FOR the people. Kudos to Snow, Collins and Grassley who are republicans who voted FOR reform. As far as I can tell the rest of the GOP is OWNED by Wall Street.

              Know who your friends are on election day.

              1. KFlippin profile image60
                KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                "The Mother of All Deregulation"

                http://www.dissentmagazine.org/article/?article=1229

                "Wall Street had been lobbying for years for an end to Glass-Steagall, but it had not received much support before Clinton. Among those with a personal interest in the demise of Glass-Steagall was Robert Rubin, who had months earlier stepped down as treasury secretary to become chair of Citigroup, a financial-services conglomerate that was facing the possibility of having to sell off its insurance underwriting subsidiary. Although Rubin openly boasted of his lobbying efforts to abolish Glass-Steagall, the Clinton administration never brought charges against him for his obvious violations of the Ethics in Government Act.

                Rubin also appealed to liberal sentiment. He claimed to have urged Congress and the White House to preserve the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), which sought to prod banks to channel a portion of their lending to poor, inner city areas. But there was already widespread evidence that CRA was falling short by permitting banks to engage in meaningless reporting requirements in place of substantive investment in low- and moderate-income communities. The real action was not CRA renewal but the demise of the Glass-Steagall firewalls. Banks were suddenly free to load up on riskier investments as long as they did so through affiliated entities such as their own hedge funds and special investment vehicles. Those riskier investments included exotic financial innovations, such as the complex derivatives that were increasingly difficult for even experts to understand or value."

                By far the most detrimental criminal act in this country, in my opinion, is the twisting of facts by persons of influence, which politicians and their internet and on the ground flunkies excel at, and elevating the twisting of those facts into an agreeable fabrication with a touch of truth, repeat it again and again, and forever change the lives of those people they have duped.

                1. KFlippin profile image60
                  KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                  How silent they become when faced with the facts.............

                  1. KFlippin profile image60
                    KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                    KFlippin wrote:
                    "The Mother of All Deregulation"

                    http://www.dissentmagazine.org/article/?article=1229

                    "Wall Street had been lobbying for years for an end to Glass-Steagall, but it had not received much support before Clinton. Among those with a personal interest in the demise of Glass-Steagall was Robert Rubin, who had months earlier stepped down as treasury secretary to become chair of Citigroup, a financial-services conglomerate that was facing the possibility of having to sell off its insurance underwriting subsidiary. Although Rubin openly boasted of his lobbying efforts to abolish Glass-Steagall, the Clinton administration never brought charges against him for his obvious violations of the Ethics in Government Act.

                    Rubin also appealed to liberal sentiment. He claimed to have urged Congress and the White House to preserve the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), which sought to prod banks to channel a portion of their lending to poor, inner city areas. But there was already widespread evidence that CRA was falling short by permitting banks to engage in meaningless reporting requirements in place of substantive investment in low- and moderate-income communities. The real action was not CRA renewal but the demise of the Glass-Steagall firewalls. Banks were suddenly free to load up on riskier investments as long as they did so through affiliated entities such as their own hedge funds and special investment vehicles. Those riskier investments included exotic financial innovations, such as the complex derivatives that were increasingly difficult for even experts to understand or value."

                    By far the most detrimental criminal act in this country, in my opinion, is the twisting of facts by persons of influence, which politicians and their internet and on the ground flunkies excel at, and elevating the twisting of those facts into an agreeable fabrication with a touch of truth, repeat it again and again, and forever change the lives of those people they have duped. 


                    Still no addressing of the facts, just the fiction that is blessed by the party.

            2. KFlippin profile image60
              KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              He was lying in the quote, wake up.  You think quoting someone makes it fact?  Clinton and his advisors full well knew that Derivatives were already creating big losses for investors who thought they were hedging with them smartly and lost their butts, including even pension funds at that point in time. I'm fairly sure there was even a documentary that clearly showed that Clinton's financial team shut down anyone who raised concerns and wanted regulation of derivative trading. 

              There is no 'they' were wrong, only 'they ignored' the known consequences of a free for all financial poliy -- which is pretty much what Clinton set in place to replace Glass-Stegall.

              1. Misha profile image73
                Mishaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                For some reason our home democrats seem to think exactly this - look at the amount of quotes they post....

                1. KFlippin profile image60
                  KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                  For real, some are veritable champs at finding things that say what they want.  But, I'll get crucified for saying so as I've now posted a quote myself. smile  Although, if anyone bothers to actually 'read' the article, it is quite balanced.  The idea that these issues are straight red and blue is fairly moronic, as is liberals thinking they can get away with painting everything bad the color red -- eventually, their blue will have a flush of pink embarrassment.

            3. Doug Hughes profile image60
              Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Ralph Deeds - "I'm pretty  sure that I read or heard Clinton say that in retrospect repealing Glass Steagall was a mistake."

              Kflippin  "No, you did not, your recollection is quite incorrect."

              What President Clinton said -

              "On derivatives, yeah I think they were wrong and I think I was wrong to take [their advice] because the argument on derivatives was that these things are expensive and sophisticated and only a handful of investors will buy them and they don’t need any extra protection, and any extra transparency. The money they’re putting up guarantees them transparency,” Clinton told me.

              “And the flaw in that argument,” Clinton added, “was that first of all sometimes people with a lot of money make stupid decisions and make it without transparency.”

              Now before we continue the debate, Flipper, suppose you concede that Ralph's recall was right and you were dead wrong. I haven't spokne to Ralph, but he might have decided that if you can't be honest, you aint worth talkin' to.

              1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
                Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                Thanks, Doug.

              2. KFlippin profile image60
                KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                Look, Dougie, you can run on and on with your hyperbole and fact twisting all you want.  Gotta get that last, and lost, word in, somehow makes your argument stick in your mind as the one that won?  Facts, are facts. Beat them with a stick, and they are still facts.

                1. Doug Hughes profile image60
                  Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                  Was that intended as a concession that Ralph had the facts -
                  and you did  not?

                  1. KFlippin profile image60
                    KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                    .....and we are all laughing now.

  11. MikeNV profile image71
    MikeNVposted 7 years ago

    I didn't realize this was a victory for Obama... seems like he is all about himself.

    If you read the bill it's not a victory for consumers.  You can expect your checking account fees to rise, and you can expect banks will just pass along the costs just like they did last year with the credit card bill.

    You can also expect gasoline prices to rise with the PORK attached to this bill.

    And once again this is another piecemeal bill that isn't even finalized.  They will do to it whatever they feel like doing.  That's a great way to make laws.  Pass something that isn't even remotely finished... the tweak it later.

    Some victory!

    1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      The bill isn't perfect, but the consensus is that it's a good start. Now Obama can move on to climate and energy legislation.

      1. JON EWALL profile image46
        JON EWALLposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Ralph
        CAN YOU TELL ME WHY FANNIE AND FREDDIE WERE  NOT INCLUDED IN THE BILL.
        Why hasn't congress called for an investigation of Fannie and Freddie's relationship with Frank Raine's and Chicago Climate Exchange.
        Why did Fannie and Freddie buy patents related to carbon credits and investments in Chicago Climate Exchange.
        Is it because the government bailed these two companies out, making loans and holding an interest in the companies.
        I heard that Fannie and Freddie hold 95% of the mortgage market. With the 9.7% unemployment problem many other mortgages will go into default. If that happens Fannie and Freddie will create another housing collapse.
        Your thoughts would be appreciated.

        je

        1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
          Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Good question. I don't know the answer. I may be that they haven't yet figured out how to clean up the mess and what to do with Fannie and Freddy.

      2. JON EWALL profile image46
        JON EWALLposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Ralph Deeds

        Don't be blinded with all the smoke and mirrors, there is more to come out on what is happening in Washington.

        Obama took over the student loan industry when the healthcare bill was passed. How could that happen, student loans have nothing to do with healthcare.
        My daughter has a student loan with a bank, recently she got a call from the government run student loan department.The woman told her she would be sending some papers to sign.The questions on the doc was very intrusive in my daughter;s privacy.The woman told her , unless she signed the papers, her loan would be voided.
        Ralph, that's just the start.THE FCC is working to take control of the Internet.you won't hear anything from the mainstream media either.
        your comments please

        1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
          Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          There have been plenty of abuses involved in student loans. It's about time regulators stepped in.

          http://hubpages.com/hub/CROOK_ALERT__FI … DENT_LOANS

          http://hubpages.com/hub/CROOK_ALERT__BI … DENT_LOANS

    2. Doug Hughes profile image60
      Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Mike - I got a question. In your book is it possible for President Obama to do ANYTHING right - or does his identity mean anything he says or does is wrong regardless of content?

  12. Bill Miller profile image59
    Bill Millerposted 7 years ago

    You see how that's done Doug? Mr Deeds didn't call me a Nazi, he pointed out my error and allowed me to either admit my mistake or muddy the waters with ridiculous statements. I opted for the right thing to do, you should try it occasionally.

    1. Doug Hughes profile image60
      Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Ralph is a class act - I don't pretend to be. However, when I am wrong I admit it. I have on more than one occasion. And I never called you a Nazi - if you fit the uniform, it's because you cut the cloth yourself.

      I have objected to the predictable results of policies you endorse. I have pointed out how those policies resemble the policies of the evil regime.  But don't take it personally.

      1. Bill Miller profile image59
        Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        I never said you called me a Nazi.

        You think the enforcement of immigration laws is comparable to anything the Nazi's did?


        Don't worry Doug, I would never take anything you say personal,seriously,relevant or the least bit interesting.

        Thanks for your concern!

        1. Doug Hughes profile image60
          Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          I think YOUR VERSION of deporting 12 million illegal aliens is similar to the Nazi plan for rounding up 12 million Jews in Europe. In both cases you have HUGE numbers of civilians, mixed with the population most of whom have done nothing wrong and constitute no threat to the USA. Your plan could cost 300 BILLION and considering that you would offer no incentive to come forward voluntarily, would require an army of Gestapo - I mean, police.  I believe, despite protests to the contrary, the plan would be racist at its core, and implemented with racial profiling. When this  plan (forced deportation) was done in the '30s without due process, 50% of the victims of the dragent were legitimate US citizens deported improperly. But the kicker - the trait that's the MOST un-American is that it presumes that every citizen (with dark skin) is GUILTY of being an illegal alien unless they can prove they are not. This contradicts on of the most fundamental principles this country was founded on - the presumption of innocence.

          1. Bill Miller profile image59
            Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Forgive me for not reading most of your drivel but you just say the same thing over and over and none of it is fact.

            I have never said deport 12 Million people, I said deport the ILLEGAL immigrant that is found in the U.S.! No matter how hard you try to suggest I have said otherwise.

            No citizen of the U.S. will be deported in some wide sweeping net, there won't be any wide sweeping net. If a citizen of the U.S. is somehow detained as a suspected ILLEGAL he/she will have every opportunity to prove they are a citizen! If they cannot then they are an ILLEGAL immigrant.

            Hyperbole and fear is what you spread, you are the Republicans best friend!

      2. KFlippin profile image60
        KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        DougHughes Says:  "Nazi - if you fit the uniform, it's because you cut the cloth yourself."

        I say, he is precisely right.  Kind of like that old saying about the pot calling the kettle black -- hypocrisy at its finest.  But, don't take it personally.........................

        1. Doug Hughes profile image60
          Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          I don't think anyone (except you) could mistake my views for being authoritarion or fascist. All my posts indicate I advocate advancing the precepts of representative democracy, free speech and civil rights for all humanity.

          The post before yours illustates my opinion - it can hardly be mistaken for an exerpt from Mein Kampf.

          1. KFlippin profile image60
            KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Excepting me?  Interesting.  And just exactly who said you were authoritarian and fascist?  Certainly not me. 

            You must be confused, or overly sensitive about your subtle attempts to portray those who disagree with you as Nazis.  I am fairly sure without tracking back that you have used the 'Nazi' example with purpose.  Silly Silly.

          2. Bill Miller profile image59
            Bill Millerposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            You are no friend to free speech you do your best to stifle any other opinion as racist or coming from Nazi's. You are an offense to a freedom loving person!

            1. Doug Hughes profile image60
              Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              So I am a freedom-loving friend of free speech as long as I agree with you. Or don't suggest that ideas that I see as racist or fascicst are racist or fascist. I think I gotcha.

              1. KFlippin profile image60
                KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                No, I think you misunderstood and hope to make it personal.  Your idea of freedom of speech only seems to apply to you, and your reply is disparaging and personal generally. 

                And I'm fairly certain you tried just a while ago to accuse me of accusing you of being 'authoritarian and fascist'?  Is that right, would have to check back, getting a bit senile and forgetful. Do you know what fascism is?  Do you think fascists are only those that diagree with you, and if they do, therefore, they think you are a fascist?  Sounds wierd, and very circular......and very much far left Democratic strategy!

                1. Doug Hughes profile image60
                  Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                  No, Captain America. I was talking to Bill.

                  If I thought you could understand, I would explain what fascism is - and what it was in the 30's and 40's.

            2. PrettyPanther profile image84
              PrettyPantherposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              That has to be the funniest thing I've read in a very long time!  big_smile

              1. KFlippin profile image60
                KFlippinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                Awesome!  We all need a good belly laugh!  Baseless and nonsensical deep belly laughter!

  13. KFlippin profile image60
    KFlippinposted 7 years ago

    By far the most detrimental criminal act in this country, in my opinion, is the twisting of facts by persons of influence, which politicians and their internet and on the ground flunkies excel at, and elevating the twisting of those facts into an agreeable fabrication with a touch of truth, repeat it again and again, and forever change the lives of those people they have duped.

    1. Doug Hughes profile image60
      Doug Hughesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      You are talking about Sarah Palin and her despicable 'death panel' quote? I agree. The idea that a 'religous' person of national political stature would terrorize seniors with the idea that the government was in collusion with doctors to kill them is despicable.

      It is just short of criminal though - free speech does apply - and one hopes the free press will expose the truth.

  14. habee profile image90
    habeeposted 7 years ago

    Clinton was a pretty good president. He worked with both sides of the aisle. I met him and Gore when they were running, and I voted for him once. How I wish we had him back now! Perhaps Obama just needs a little of what Bill got in the Oval Orifice...I mean OFFICE?? lol

    1. Ralph Deeds profile image71
      Ralph Deedsposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Obama has instincts and policies similar to Clinton--very much a middle of the road guy. He's reached out to the GOP, but the Republicans for the most part have declined his hand.

  15. Ralph Deeds profile image71
    Ralph Deedsposted 6 years ago

    Gretchen Morgenson, my favorite financial commentator, says finance reform bills are full of holes.

    FOR decades, until Congress did away with it 11 years ago, a Depression-era law known as Glass-Steagall ably protected bank customers, individual investors and the financial system as a whole from the kind of outright destruction we’ve witnessed over the last few years.
         
    Glass-Steagall was a 34-page document.

    The two bills that the Senate and the House are currently chewing over as part of what may be a momentous financial reordering weigh in at a whopping 3,000 pages, combined.

    Yet despite all that verbiage, there are flaws in both bills that would let Wall Street continue devising financial black boxes that have the potential to go nuclear. And even if the best of both bills becomes law, investors, taxpayers and the economy will remain vulnerable to banking crises.

    Some will argue that these bills, at around 1,500 pages each, have to be weighty and complex if they are to curb the ill effects of convoluted and inscrutable financial instruments. That makes it doubly disappointing that the bills don’t go far enough in bringing greater transparency and better oversight of everyone’s favorite multisyllabic wonderment these days: derivatives.

    Certainly the banks and the Wall Street trading shops that have so richly scored in the derivatives market are happy to keep the status quo — after all, profits flourish where opacity rules. But for most of the rest of us that’s an unsatisfactory, and possibly dangerous, outcome.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/30/busin … f=business

  16. Ralph Deeds profile image71
    Ralph Deedsposted 6 years ago

    "Shorting Reform" op-ed by Michael Lewis in the NYTimes 5-30-10

    Shorting Reform
    By MICHAEL LEWIS
    Published: May 28, 2010

       
    To: Wall Street chief executives
       
    From: Your man in Washington

    Re: Embracing the status quo

    Our earnings are robust, our compensation has returned to its naturally high levels and, as a result, we have very nearly regained our grip on the imaginations of the most ambitious students at the finest universities — and from that single fact many desirable outcomes follow.

    Thus, we have almost fully recovered from what we have agreed to call The Great Misfortune. In the next few weeks, however, ill-informed senators will meet with ill-paid representatives to reconcile their ill-conceived financial reform bills. This process cannot and should not be stopped. The American people require at least the illusion of change. But it can be rendered harmless to our interests.

    To this point, we have succeeded in keeping the public focused on the single issue that will have very little effect on how we do business: the quest to prevent taxpayer money from ever again being used to (as they put it) “bail out Wall Street.”

    As we know, we never needed their money in the first place, and by the time we need it again, we’ll be long gone. If we can keep the public, and its putative representatives, fixated on the question of whether their bill does, or does not, ensure there will be no more bailouts, we may entirely avoid a discussion of our relationship to the broader society.

    Working together as a team we have already suppressed debate on many dangerous ideas: that those of us deemed too big to fail are too big and should be broken up, for instance, or that credit default swaps and collateralized debt obligations and other financial inventions should simply be banned. We are now at leisure to address the few remaining threats to our way of life. To wit:

    1. Washington will attempt to limit our ability to exploit the idiocy of institutional investors a k a our “customers.” The Senate appears intent on forcing our most lucrative derivatives business onto open exchanges, where investors can, for the first time, observe the prices we give them. This measure — which I’ve come to call the “Making the World Safe for Germans With Money Act” — will prove difficult to defeat. Our public strategy here, as elsewhere, must be to complicate the issue.

    To the mere mention of open, public exchanges for derivatives, you should always respond, “That will destroy liquidity in these fragile and complex markets.” Most people don’t even know what “liquidity” means, or what causes it or why they actually need to have more rather than less of it — or what, even, the point is of a market that requires privacy to operate. They will assume that you must understand it better than they do. For that reason alone it is useful.

    The other point you should make to our elected officials (privately, please) is that our profits function as a fixed point in an uncertain universe. If they curtail our ability to shaft German investors in one way, we will simply find some other way to do it.

    Shockingly, the Senate version of the bill more or less would require us to cease to trade derivatives entirely. This unpleasant idea was introduced by Senator Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, and it leads me to a point that is worth underscoring: We do not have a problem with the American people, we have a problem with American women. Elizabeth Warren, our TARP supervisor, continues to ask questions about what we did with our government money; Mary Schapiro has used her authority at the S.E.C. to sue Goldman Sachs. Of the four Republican senators who crossed over to vote with the Democrats, two were women — and one of the guys posed naked for Cosmopolitan magazine.

    Going forward, we should discourage women from seeking higher office — or indeed, any position in which they might exert influence over our activities. More immediately, in your private conversations with Larry Summers, Tim Geithner and male Republican senators, you should simply refer to Blanche Lincoln as “unhinged.” They’ll get it.

    Read the rest of Lewis's op-ed here:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/30/opini … ef=opinion

 
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