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Is this thing really on?

Updated on March 3, 2012

Several months ago, I wrote this article for a side-project of mine. If you don't feel like reading it, my rantings that evening were basically about (deep breath) insider trading in government, how it was legal for them yet not for us, and how members of Congress bet against the housing market right before it blew up, thus raising some personal speculation about whether or not that betting got in the way of anyone actually doing anything to prevent it from collapsing in the first place.

All very optimistic and trusting of me, I know.

Well, can you blame me for thinking those things? I mean it all happened. I did my research. I posted my links. They bet against us and won. Insider trading means that you know something before the public knows, and that you bet on it before the stocks go through the roof. So how did they bet against the housing market without knowing it was in any trouble? That doesn't make any sense, in my opinion. Maybe someone else can enlighten me.

During Obama's State of the Union speech, he spoke about busting up insider trading, egging Congress to "send [him] a bill that bans insider trading by Members of Congress, and [he would] sign it tomorrow." Well, within days, Congress gave him a bill!

I'm sure there's something sketchy in there that still allows them to use their inside knowledge for some personal financial gain, or maybe it allows them to hold onto what they're already invested in, but either way, that's a huge step forward. So am I the only person who thought it was amazingly fast that this went through the whole process so gosh darn quickly, when surely the Repubs were supposed to argue it to death? I was even surprised the Dems didn't try to push that Presidential comment under the rug. I mean, most of them had bank accounts that mushroomed from their personal knowledge, on both sides of the parties.

So, am I going too far in thinking the speedy action that got The Stock Act through Congress so fast is kind of eery? It's as if Congress was check-mating Obama's check before it turned into a bigger public outcry and made everyone look bad. I mean, Obama was the first President to ever mention Congressional insider trading in a State of the Union Address (a speech watched by most of the nation), perhaps even being the first to ever mention it at all.

The Stock Act had been introduced in 2006, and merely a couple handfuls of Members in Congress supported it the first time it went around. It was as if nobody cared. It was as if they ignored it, shoved it back into the closet where it came from. Yet this time around, it took but a few lines in a speech to get it passed.

Of course I'm happy about it. I guess. I mean, as far as I know, it's a good bill. It's better than nothing, right? I'm glad it passed, sure. If you really want to know, the whole issue has a long, complicated lifetime that I am pleased has nearly ended within my own.

Still though, such a sudden change of heart really makes me wonder.


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