Posts Tagged ‘too big to fail’

Hypocrite Obama At It Again: Attacks GOP Leader For Wall St. Meetings Even As His Chief Of Staff Does Same Thing

April 21, 2010

Let’s see, the definition of “hypocrite“: a person who professes beliefs and opinions that he or she does not hold in order to conceal his or her real feelings or motives.

Yep.  That’s pretty much Barry Hussein – our hypocrite in chief – in a nutshell.

Obama Calls Wall Street Meetings ‘Shocking’ as Rahm Emanuel Meets with Wall Street Investors
by  Connie Hair
04/20/2010

White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel met with Wall Street investors Sunday, the night before his boss, President Obama, criticized such meetings with Wall Street investors.

In Los Angeles trying to help Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) boost her sagging senatorial campaign that is in serious trouble, Obama Monday called such Wall Street meetings “shocking.”

“The Senate Republican leader, he paid a visit to Wall Street a week or two ago,” Obama said.  “He took along the chairman of their campaign committee. He met with some of the movers and shakers up there. I don’t know exactly what was discussed. All I can tell you is when he came back, he promptly announced he would oppose the financial regulatory reform.  He would oppose it.  Shocking.”

Just one day before, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel was meeting with Wall Street “movers and shakers” working out the finer details of the Democrats’ Wall Street reform that sets up a permanent taxpayer-funded bailout structure for “too big to fail” companies.

How is that NOT hypocrisy?  “How DARE you do the same thing my guy just did!  How DARE YOU!!!”

So what is really “shocking” is just what a loathsome, lying, hypocrite demagogue our president is.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell had absolutely every right and reason to meet with the Wall Street figures, given the fact that he had been blasting the $50 billion in “too big to fail” bailout money that the Democrat legislation had stuffed in it.  That was so heinous that even Obama was trying to strip out the uber-obvious unpopular bailout cash for Wall Street big boys.  Obama said he would onlyonly sign a bill if it passed the test of putting an end to bailouts; this bill contains a gigantic bailout slush fund – and promises many more bailouts to come.  And there is other bad news in that power-grab Obama calls a bill.

Hey, Barry Hussein, how about if we ask one of your Democrats how he feels about that fifty billion bucks that McConnell had been outraged about.  Ask your fellow Democrat how HE feels about your turd of a bill:

(As Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.), a Democrat member of the House Financial Services Committee, told the Politico yesterday that even if the $50 billion bailout slush fund currently in the bill were stripped out, “The Dodd bill has unlimited executive bailout authority. … The bill contains permanent, unlimited bailout authority.”)

The Washington Post reports:

“As President Obama prepares to deliver a speech in New York later this week that will attempt to align his administration squarely on the side of American taxpayers furious with Wall Street, his chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, met privately on Sunday night with some of the city’s top investors,” The Washington Post’s Jason Horowitz and Michael Shear report. “At a private cocktail reception at the Park Avenue home of investors Jane Hartley and Ralph Schlosstein, Emanuel joked about how each of the 60 guests should take a work of art home before speaking seriously about the administration’s commitment to regulation reform.”

Perhaps Obama didn’t get the Rahmbo memo?

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blasted Democrats for their support of the $50 billion Wall Street bailout fund from the Senate floor today:

“It is important for the country and taxpayer that we get this right, that we put them before politics.  That’s why I was disappointed to read that Senate Democrats are refusing to drop the $50 billion bailout fund — a fund that the Treasury Secretary himself opposes – unless Republicans pay a price for taking it out. This is exactly what Americans don’t like about Washington: when one side tries to ‘get’ something for doing what they should have done in the first place.  If everyone agrees it should be dropped, then it should be dropped.  And if Senate Democrats think it should stay, then they should explain why they think the Treasury Secretary was wrong when he said that this bailout fund ‘would create expectations that the government would step in to protect shareholders and creditors from losses.’

“Both sides have expressed a willingness to make the changes needed to ensure without any doubt that this bill won’t put taxpayers on the hook for future bailouts of Wall Street banks. Let’s just do that.”

Apparently Mitch McConnell is suffering from something slightly worse than Stockholm Syndrome, given the fact that he seems to think the depraved demagogues across the aisle actually have a “willingness” to make “changes needed.”  That just isn’t the way Democrats roll, Mitch: rather, they try to shove through one hard-core partisan bill after another, and then demonize and demagogue anybody who points out what’s wrong with the crap they’re pushing.

You should really KNOW that, Mitch.  After all, Barry Hussein just literally got through doing that very thing to you.

The often-way-too-infuriatingly moderate Susan Collins explained what was wrong with the Democrats’ thrust-into-our-face financial overhaul bill this way:

SEN. SUSAN COLLINS, R-ME.: I don’t think you do it by creating a moral hazard, by putting a big fat fund out there in the first place that tells financial institutions don’t worry, you can engage in risky practices, high-risk products, there is going to be a fund, there it is, $50 billion all ready to bail you out.

But Democrats LOVE moral hazard.  They LOVE rewarding the people who created the mess we’re in to begin with.  And those morally hazardous special interests KNOW it: that’s why Goldman Sachs was the SECOND BIGGEST FINANCIAL CONTRIBUTOR TO OBAMA DURING THE CAMPAIGN.  It’s also why John Paulson, the slimeball investor who made billions screwing America by getting investors to buy investments he was betting would fail, was a major Democrat donor and major supporter of Democrat Chuck Schumer.

Charles Krauthammer points out the fundamental power-grab that this bill truly is:

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: I think what is so interesting about the bill that is now proposed is that it is Congress once again voluntarily emasculating itself.

The bailout as proposed in the bill would allow the executive branch on its own, without appropriation from Congress, any approval from Congress, to seize, essentially seize a firm it designates again unilaterally as systematically risky, take it over, have the treasury back all of the bad loans, and then have the Fed print the money to pay them off.

Now, when we did the Chrysler bailout, or the bailout of TARP, which we had in 2008, we had to get the Congress along. This is an interesting and I think a disturbing trend where so much arbitrary power is not only in Washington, but not only in the executive, there is no checks, no balance.

That means you get a few powerful people in Washington, secretary of the treasury, head of the FDIC. You walk into a large institution and say we might designate you systematically risky. We want you to do “x,” “y” and “z.” I can assure you they will do “x,” “y” and “z.”

And that’s what happens in Putin’s Russia when he takes over oil. That’s not the way it should be. Congress ought to stay engaged, and that it’s willingly giving up its prerogative is remarkable.

As usual, Democrats are counting upon outright lies and demagoguery to sell a truly terrible bill.  They present the facade that they are against Wall Street – even though Wall Street has been lining Democrats’ pockets with millions and millions in contributions, and even though Obama’s chief of staff Rahm Emanuel came out of Goldman Sachs – and that Republicans are somehow opposing everything that is good and right by standing against Obama’s next Washington power-grab.

The fact of the matter is that the biggest and most scandal-ridden Wall Street firms such as Goldman Sachs would BENEFIT from Obama’s “regulatory reform.” That’s because the president would have so much power to dole out bailouts and benefits to the most politically-connected Wall Street power-players.  Big Wall Street firms would be able to benefit from low interest government loans and undercut smaller and less politically-connected firms.

To quote the president of Americans for Tax Reform:

The new bank bill would institutionalize more bailouts. No longer would congressmen vote on bailouts, they would be run by bureaucrats and flow automatically from the pockets of taxpayers to the pockets of banks that contribute enough to the Chicago political machine to make the list.

Do you actually want that?  You are literally enabling Obama and Democrats to receive millions and millions of dollars in campaign contributions to help them win reelection even as they give huge Wall Street firms billions and billions in future rewards courtesy of taxpayers.

Please don’t believe the constant stream of lies that spew out of the mouth of your hypocrite-in-chief.

My Big Fat Greek Bailout – And What It Means For America

February 10, 2010

So Greece is going to get its big fat bailout.

The “Too big to fail” mindset wins yet again.  First it was big union-dominated automakers and high-risk lending institutions.  And now it’s entire countries, starting with Greece.  And after Greece comes Spain and Portugal, and then will come California and a bunch of other mostly decades-long liberal-progressive states like New York and New Jersey.  High taxation and out-of-control spending equal fiscal disaster as states and countries rack up enormous debts that they can never hope to repay.

Here are a couple of headlines for you:

California will go bankrupt

Is California Too Big To Fail?

And you know damn well it is.  California all by itself is the sixth largest economy on the planet.  And the inescapable logic of redistributionism means that the other 49 states are going to have to redistribute their wealth to bail out the People’s Republic of Pelosistan.

Beware Greeks bearing IOUs.  Hell, beware ANYBODY bearing IOUs.

In contrast to everything liberals believe, the higher the tax rates, the lower the revenues that are being collected as businesses relocate to states that DON’T hate them.  This has been proven throughout American economic history, and it is certainly being proven now: the states with the highest taxes are facing the largest revenue shortfalls.

Their understanding of free market capitalist economics comes primarily through the straw man created by Karl Marx, and so they fundamentally misunderstand and distrust the economic system that made America the greatest nation on earth.  They want redistributionism, and someone has to pay for my right to be a nonproductive bon-bon-eating couch potato.  That “someone” ends up being the only people with the resources to invest and create jobs.  But the rich aren’t stupid, and so they shelter their money to avoid the higher taxes.

I mean, even Oprah Winfrey does everything she can to avoid high taxes.  Even MICHAEL MOORE does everything he can to avoid paying more taxes.

And what do we do when the disaster these people created finally comes home to roost?  We bail them out, so they can do it all over again.  It’s called “moral hazard.”  Somebody in power should look it up and then quit doing it.

We keep making this giant ball of stink bigger and bigger and bigger, and we’re all wading through it now, and everything is going to sh*t all around us because our leaders don’t have the courage to simply let losers lose.  We’ve become bailout nation, where the people who had discipline and did things right prop up the reckless so they can continue being reckless until the system crashes.  Or to put it more precisely, until the system crashes bigger and badder the next time around.

Times are going to get harder.  China is announcing that they are dumping US securities in what appears to be an economic war declared against us.  That’s going to make it a lot more expensive for us to keep borrowing.  But the only way we can continue these insane liberal-progressive policies is to keep borrowing and borrowing.

There’s no question that we need to collect more taxes.  But raising rates isn’t the way to collect more taxes.  The Bush tax cuts stimulated an unprecedented 52-consecutive months of economic growth even as it generated MORE tax revenue.  Obama’s going back to “the failed policies of the past” from the Jimmy Carter era are going to create a lot of damage as Democrats refuse to learn the lesson of the luxury tax again and again and again.

There’s also no question we need to dramatically decrease our spending.  And along with that, we need to phase down the boondoggles we’ve created via Social Security (which is now in the red, paying out more than it collects) and Medicare/Medicaid (how does a ONE HUNDRED TRILLION DOLLAR unfunded liability strike you?).

The problem is that the federal government has expanded so far beyond its constitutional limitations that its not even funny – with the lion’s share coming from progressive-Democrat social programs.  The government which was supposed to be limited to defending the country and creating infrastructure is now involved in absolutely everything under the sun.

And Democrats will fight to the death for every single one of these programs.

There’s also the now-typical Democrat demand from the government:

Pay my mortgage.  Fill my gas tank. Buy my car.  Give me free health care.  Feed me.  Change my diapers.

Which means we can’t control our black hole-spending.  Which means we can’t reduce our never-before-seen-in-human-history debts.  Which means that we’re on the same road that Greece is on.  Only no one will be there to bail us out when we collapse.

The only question is how long it takes for us to get there.

On Totalitarian Sentimentality: What It Is, And Why We Should Fight It

December 23, 2009

Mark Steyn, who frequently serves as a fill-in for Rush Limbaugh and recently has been filling-in for Sean Hannity on his television program, is a genuine treasure.  He manages to combine a riotous sense of humor with conservative wisdom and his own je ne sais quoi.

Today, on Rush Limbaugh’s radio program, Steyn told a story about a funeral he recently attended in Europe at a church that had been built in the 11th century.

His party was in the vehicle immediately behind the hearse, so he couldn’t help but see a cart that looked to him like a shopping cart being wheeled up to the hearse.

He asked the pallbearers who were in the process of unloading the casket what the shopping cart was for.  And one of them answered and said, “It’s to bear the casket, mate.”

Steyn said, “I thought you were supposed to carry the casket in.”  He pointed to the handles and said, “Here are the handles.  You’re pallbearers.  You’re supposed to bear the pall.”

The pallbearer said, “Health Services regulations, mate.  We’re not allowed to carry the casket due to safety regulations.”

Steyn said, “Safety regulations?”

The pallbearer said, “The path is uneven.”

Mark Steyn then said, “This is a one thousand year-old church.  That same path has been uneven for a thousand years.  And now somebody decides its unsafe to carry a casket?”

The pallbearer repeated, “Safety regulations, mate.”  As though that was all the answer that was needed.

Mark Steyn and his brother decided that this wouldn’t do.  “We’ll carry the casket in ourselves.”

The pallbearers said, “You can’t.  You need to have a license from the state to be pallbearers.”

Steyn’s brother said, “What’s the point in becoming a licensed pallbearer if you’re not allowed to actually bear the pall?”

They argued about it for a little while, and finally decided that Steyn and his brother would assist the pallbearers in carrying the casket.

What’s the moral of this story?  Steyn said that this is just the way big government works in today’s modern Europeanized socialism.  It simply takes over everything with a gradual takeover of regulations.

And he pointed out that you have to fight against it in all the little things, because otherwise it will simply just keep regulating more and more little things and accumulating more and more power over every aspect of our lives.

Then he referenced an article entitled, “Totalitarian Sentimentality,” which I thought worthy of posting.

Totalitarian Sentimentality

By Roger Scruton from the December 2009-January 2010 issue

Conservatives recognize that social order is hard to achieve and easy to destroy, that it is held in place by discipline and sacrifice, and that the indulgence of criminality and vice is not an act of kindness but an injustice for which all of us will pay. Conservatives therefore maintain severe and — to many people — unattractive attitudes. They favor retributive punishment in the criminal law; they uphold traditional marriage and the sacrifices that it requires; they believe in discipline in schools and the value of hard work and military service. They believe in the family and think that the father is an essential part in it. They see welfare provisions as necessary, but also as a potential threat to genuine charity, and a way both of rewarding antisocial conduct and creating a culture of dependency. They value the hard-won legal and constitutional inheritance of their country and believe that immigrants must also value it if they are to be allowed to settle here. Conservatives do not think that war is caused by military strength, but on the contrary by military weakness, of a kind that tempts adventurers and tyrants. And a properly ordered society must be prepared to fight wars — even wars in foreign parts — if it is to enjoy a lasting peace in its homeland. In short conservatives are a hard and unfriendly bunch who, in the world in which we live, must steel themselves to be reviled and despised by all people who make compassion into the cornerstone of the moral life.

Liberals are of course very different. They see criminals as victims of social hierarchy and unequal power, people who should be cured by kindness and not threatened with punishment. They wish all privileges to be shared by everyone, the privileges of marriage included. And if marriage can be reformed so as to remove the cost of it, so much the better. Children should be allowed to play and express their love of life; the last thing they need is discipline. Learning comes — didn’t Dewey prove as much? — from self-expression; and as for sex education, which gives the heebie-jeebies to social conservatives, no better way has ever been found of liberating children from the grip of the family and teaching them to enjoy their bodily rights. Immigrants are just migrants, victims of economic necessity, and if they are forced to come here illegally that only increases their claim on our compassion. Welfare provisions are not rewards to those who receive them, but costs to those who give — something that we owe to those less fortunate than ourselves. As for the legal and constitutional inheritance of the country, this is certainly to be respected — but it must “adapt” to new situations, so as to extend its protection to the new victim class. Wars are caused by military strength, by “boys with their toys,” who cannot resist the desire to flex their muscles, once they have acquired them. The way to peace is to get rid of the weapons, to reduce the army, and to educate children in the ways of soft power. In the world in which we live liberals are self-evidently lovable — emphasizing in all their words and gestures that, unlike the social conservatives, they are in every issue on the side of those who need protecting, and against the hierarchies that oppress them.

Those two portraits are familiar to everyone, and I have no doubt on which side the readers of this magazine will stand. What all conservatives know, however, is that it is they who are motivated by compassion, and that their cold-heartedness is only apparent. They are the ones who have taken up the cause of society, and who are prepared to pay the cost of upholding the principles on which we all — liberals included — depend. To be known as a social conservative is to lose all hope of an academic career; it is to be denied any chance of those prestigious prizes, from the MacArthur to the Nobel Peace Prize, which liberals confer only on each other. For an intellectual it is to throw away the prospect of a favorable review — or any review at all — in the New York Times or the New York Review of Books. Only someone with a conscience could possibly wish to expose himself to the inevitable vilification that attends such an “enemy of the people.” And this proves that the conservative conscience is governed not by self-interest but by a concern for the public good. Why else would anyone express it?

By contrast, as conservatives also know, the compassion displayed by the liberal is precisely that — compassion displayed, though not necessarily felt. The liberal knows in his heart that his “compassionating zeal,” as Rousseau described it, is a privilege for which he must thank the social order that sustains him. He knows that his emotion toward the victim class is (these days at least) more or less cost-free, that the few sacrifices he might have to make by way of proving his sincerity are nothing compared to the warm glow of approval by which he will be surrounded by declaring his sympathies. His compassion is a profoundly motivated state of mind, not the painful result of a conscience that will not be silenced, but the costless ticket to popular acclaim.

Why am I repeating those elementary truths, you ask? The answer is simple. The USA has descended from its special position as the principled guardian of Western civilization and joined the club of sentimentalists who have until now depended on American power. In the administration of President Obama we see the very same totalitarian sentimentality that has been at work in Europe, and which has replaced civil society with the state, the family with the adoption agency, work with welfare, and patriotic duty with universal “rights.” The lesson of postwar Europe is that it is easy to flaunt compassion, but harder to bear the cost of it. Far preferable to the hard life in which disciplined teaching, costly charity, and responsible attachment are the ruling principles is the life of sentimental display, in which others are encouraged to admire you for virtues you do not possess. This life of phony compassion is a life of transferred costs. Liberals who wax lyrical on the sufferings of the poor do not, on the whole, give their time and money to helping those less fortunate than themselves. On the contrary, they campaign for the state to assume the burden. The inevitable result of their sentimental approach to suffering is the expansion of the state and the increase in its power both to tax us and to control our lives.

As the state takes charge of our needs, and relieves people of the burdens that should rightly be theirs — the burdens that come from charity and neighborliness — serious feeling retreats. In place of it comes an aggressive sentimentality that seeks to dominate the public square. I call this sentimentality “totalitarian” since — like totalitarian government — it seeks out opposition and carefully extinguishes it, in all the places where opposition might form. Its goal is to “solve” our social problems, by imposing burdens on responsible citizens, and lifting burdens from the “victims,” who have a “right” to state support. The result is to replace old social problems, which might have been relieved by private charity, with the new and intransigent problems fostered by the state: for example, mass illegitimacy, the decline of the indigenous birthrate, and the emergence of the gang culture among the fatherless youth. We have seen this everywhere in Europe, whose situation is made worse by the pressure of mass immigration, subsidized by the state. The citizens whose taxes pay for the flood of incoming “victims” cannot protest, since the sentimentalists have succeeded in passing “hate speech” laws and in inventing crimes like “Islamophobia” which place their actions beyond discussion. This is just one example of a legislative tendency that can be observed in every area of social life: family, school, sexual relations, social initiatives, even the military — all are being deprived of their authority and brought under the control of the “soft power” that rules from above.

This is how we should understand the award of the Nobel Peace Prize to President Obama. To his credit he has made clear that he does not deserve it — though I assume he deserves it every bit as much as Al Gore. The prize is an endorsement from the European elite, a sigh of collective relief that America has at last taken the decisive step toward the modern consensus, by exchanging real for fake emotion, hard power for soft power, and truth for lies. What matters in Europe is the great fiction that things will stay in place forever, that peace will be permanent and society stable, just so long as everybody is “nice.” Under President Bush (who was, of course, no exemplary president, and certainly not nice) America maintained its old image, of national self-confidence and belligerent assertion of the right to be successful. Bush was the voice of a property-owning democracy, in which hard work and family values still achieved a public endorsement. As a result he was hated by the European elites, and hated all the more because Europe needs America and knows that, without America, it will die. Obama is welcomed as a savior: the American president for whom the Europeans have been hoping — the one who will rescue them from the truth.

How America itself will respond to this, however, remains doubtful. I suspect, from my neighbors in rural Virginia, that totalitarian sentimentality has no great appeal to them, and that they will be prepared to resist a government that seeks to destroy their savings and their social capital, for the sake of a compassion that it does not really feel.

This is no newly realized idea.  Alexis de Tocqueville understood this well more than a century ago when he wrote:

“Above this race of men stands an immense and tutelary power, which takes upon itself alone to secure their gratifications and to watch over their fate. That power is absolute, minute, regular, provident, and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks, on the contrary, to keep them in perpetual childhood; it is well content that the people should rejoice, provided they think of nothing but rejoicing. For their happiness such a government willingly labors, but it chooses to be the sole agent and the only arbiter of that happiness; it provides for their security, foresees and supplies their necessities, facilitates their pleasures, manages their principal concerns, directs their industry, regulates the descent of property, and subdivides their inheritances; what remains, but to spare them all the care of thinking and all the trouble of living?”

Whether it is health care “reform” that will create a superstructure that liberals will continue to build more and more socialist big government control forever after; whether it is cap-and-trade, which will send energy prices through the roof and lead to government control over everything that produces or consumes energy, or has anything to do with energy in it’s development; whether it is federal government bailouts of every industry or institution deemed “too big to fail”; whether it is outright government ownership of private industry (such as the car companies); whether it is sweetheart deals offered to one politician, one state, or one industry or institution that correspondingly imposes burdens on others; whether it is the series of sweeping new regulations that strangle businesses and keep banks unable to make loans; we have to fight this agenda with everything we have.


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