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06-30-2010, 11:34 AM   #1
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Tax and spend repubs..opps.. just spend.

Looking out for wall street:
QuoteQuote:
on friday, the conference committee reconciling the house and senate versions of financial regulatory reform legislation approved final language (along a party-line vote) after a marathon 20-hour negotiating session. Lawmakers made a flurry of changes, including the addition of an exemption to the volcker rule -- a ban on banks trading for their own benefit with federally insured dollars -- added at the behest of sen. Scott brown (r-ma), and a weakening of sen. Blanche lincoln's (d-ar) provision requiring banks to spin-off their derivatives trading desks. However, the final bill retained lincoln's language requiring exchanges and clearinghouses for derivatives, as well as a provision that compels banks to hold more capital against losses. Unfortunately, republicans decided they were not yet done making changes. Yesterday, negotiators had to briefly reopen conference proceedings "after senate republicans who had supported an earlier version of the measure threatened to block final approval unless democrats removed a proposed tax on big banks and hedge funds." maine gop sens. Susan collins and olympia snowe had announced that they would be joining brown -- whose campaign received heavy support from wall street -- in voting against the reform bill because it imposes a $19 billion fee on the biggest financial firms to cover the cost of the law's implementation. But as mother jones' kevin drum noted, the bank fee is "not there to punish banks or to create a slush fund for new spending. It's there solely to make the bill deficit neutral." rep. Barney frank (d-ma) challenged the republican hold-outs to find some other way to pay for the bill. "do they want to add to the deficit?" he asked, calling these peacocks out on their deficit hypocrisy. "is there another way? What's their other way?" to appease these republicans, the conference committee yesterday agreed to eliminate the bank tax and "bring an early end to the troubled asset relief program," which would free up about $11 billion to pay for the bill. every single republican on the committee voted against this measure, instead opting to add to the deficit and put taxpayers on the hook for the legislation.
QuoteQuote:
Senate Democrats tried and failed on three separate occasions this month to pass a tax extenders bill that included an extension of expired unemployment benefits. Republicans, along with Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE), killed it by threatening a filibuster, potentially forcing states to cut 200,000 jobs, putting in jeopardy health and education programs, and denying benefits to 1.2 million out-of-work Americans. As a result, as Garofalo notes, Senate Democrats whittled the bill down to appease the GOP and "subjected more and more of the bill to spending offsets, ultimately leaving just the jobless benefits extension unpaid for." While Republicans still refused to budge, Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) -- who joined the filibuster threat all three times -- is now advocating for a benefits-only bill, even if it adds to the deficit. "Of course, passing a stand-alone bill neglects all the other important provisions that were in the extenders bill, including COBRA subsidies to help laid-off workers purchase health insurance and aid to states to help them with their Medicaid bills," adds Garofalo. "Failing to pass such measures is only going to add to the economic misery that Snowe at least seems aware is occurring." There are currently 15 million Americans unemployed, and almost half of them have been out of work for at least six months -- a post-World War II record. The House plans to vote on extending unemployment benefits again today, after an attempt to do so was blocked by 139 Republicans and 16 Democrats yesterday.
Can't just leave this without a "bush bash" .........
QuoteQuote:
ETHICS -- GAO STUDY FINDS BUSH ADMINISTRATION 'BURROWED' POLITICAL APPOINTEES: A recent study by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) reveals "seven instances of improper burrowing -- political appointees shifting to career civil servant positions in a given agency -- during the Bush Administration." In several cases, the GAO found that agencies followed improper procedures in personnel practices by hiring "former political appointees who appeared to have limited qualifications and/or experience to the career positions." One case indicates that the Department of Justice placed a political appointee in a career position "despite unfavorable recommendations from interviewing officials." The Department of Veterans Affairs and the Treasury both hired political appointees "who lacked the specialized experience for the position." While none of these seven transitions occurred near the 2008 presidential election, it is not the first time such "eyebrow-raising" career conversions have occurred under the Bush administration. Between March and November, 2008, the Bush administration "burrowed" at least 20 political appointees into career civil service posts, "initially depriving President-elect Obama of the chance to install his appointees in key jobs." The New York Times previously reported that in the month after the 2008 election, President Bush "made roughly 30 personnel moves...some in nominations that will require Senate approval, and others in direct appointments that will last well into President-elect Barack Obama's term and beyond." Critics argue that converting unqualified political appointees to career positions can have an indelible, profound effect on not only an agency's credibility and quality, but also its forthcoming policy. In a memo from the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) last November, director John Berry announced agencies "must seek prior approval from OPM before they can appoint a current or recent political appointee to a competitive or non-political excepted service position at any level."
http://www.scribd.com/doc/33675147/GAO-Report-On-Political-To-Career-Conversions
http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/06/gao_study_finds_improper_b....php?
Hiring incompetent people.. par for the course I'd say...
Of course the lawyers ran.....
QuoteQuote:
Deputy Special Counsel, Immediate Office of Special
Counsel
To GS-0905-15/03, General Attorney, Investigation and
Prosecution Division
Issues:
Failed to follow own procedures for recruiting and hiring
attorneys
Both the former Special Counsel and the convertee are no
longer with the agency.

Conclusions: This conversion was not in compliance with the agency
procedures for attorney hiring



Last edited by jeffkrol; 06-30-2010 at 11:56 AM.
06-30-2010, 11:47 AM   #2
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I knew Olympia way back, in Maine. What has she turned into...

One of the silly things here is that if the banks were doing this for their own benefit, they would ante up the money for an exchange, as this cuts costs on all sides. But of course the whole purpose of these derivatives was to be off-balance sheet, off-exchanges instruments.

And they do set up subsidiaries and operating companies at the drop of a hat, should tax or regulatory benefits accrue from doing so.

They just won't want to be forced this way, and they understand the value of hard negotiating. In other words, they are prepared to do these things and won't exactly mind, but they don't want to leave any money on the table either.

Perhaps some of these changes would have been better achieved via escalating tax on specific forms of trading, with exemption for doing it the 'right way'. Of course, then we'd be reading how the tax is being reduced and more exclusions added, for the same reason as above.
06-30-2010, 12:02 PM   #3
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What's a few more billion added on to Obamarama's trillions anyway? It's just numbers. 10 trillion here 20 trillion there. So what? It's not their money. Who cares?
(insert sarcastic smiley right about here)
06-30-2010, 02:51 PM   #4
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QuoteQuote:
(insert sarcastic smiley right about here)
Would this do?



07-01-2010, 05:32 AM   #5
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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by graphicgr8s Quote
What's a few more billion added on to Obamarama's trillions anyway? It's just numbers. 10 trillion here 20 trillion there. So what? It's not their money. Who cares?
(insert sarcastic smiley right about here)
Somebody took your trillion dollars away George?
07-01-2010, 05:50 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeffkrol Quote
Somebody took your trillion dollars away George?
*Tens and scores* of trillions? Sounds like George has escalated to blaming Obama retroactively for the entire national debt.
07-01-2010, 06:15 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ratmagiclady Quote
*Tens and scores* of trillions? Sounds like George has escalated to blaming Obama retroactively for the entire national debt.
Not at all. Just for spending more than all other presidents combined.
07-01-2010, 06:32 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by graphicgr8s Quote
Not at all. Just for spending more than all other presidents combined.
"there you go again" - Ronald Reagan

Obama has yet to spend more than all other presidents combined, or add to debt more than all other presidents combined.

Of course, you'll next be accusing him of Clintonian lack of principle, when he follows through on the spending cuts part of his program.

For those who have been following ghosts and projections instead of reality, Obama is not the socialist spender people - on the right and left - seem to think he is. All along he's been talking in terms that in the past would have been fiscally conservative - though with the progressive twist of actually looking several years down the road and trying to head off future problems.

He's always spoken about any spending being paid for - we may disagree about the assumptions, but at least he's putting that on paper. Unlike the Republicans who ought to know better.

And, if you read my post this morning about the recession compared to the depression, you'd maybe understand how close we were/are to another depression here and in the other developed countries. I think Bush acted with courage and *presidentially* when he initiated some of the financial rescue efforts, and worked with the incoming Obama to give Obama at least a walking start to the inherited problem.

07-01-2010, 06:58 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nesster Quote
"there you go again" - Ronald Reagan

Obama has yet to spend more than all other presidents combined, or add to debt more than all other presidents combined.

Of course, you'll next be accusing him of Clintonian lack of principle, when he follows through on the spending cuts part of his program.

For those who have been following ghosts and projections instead of reality, Obama is not the socialist spender people - on the right and left - seem to think he is. All along he's been talking in terms that in the past would have been fiscally conservative - though with the progressive twist of actually looking several years down the road and trying to head off future problems.

He's always spoken about any spending being paid for - we may disagree about the assumptions, but at least he's putting that on paper. Unlike the Republicans who ought to know better.

And, if you read my post this morning about the recession compared to the depression, you'd maybe understand how close we were/are to another depression here and in the other developed countries. I think Bush acted with courage and *presidentially* when he initiated some of the financial rescue efforts, and worked with the incoming Obama to give Obama at least a walking start to the inherited problem.
How pleasant to read a rational, reasoned response instead of all those extreme and politically inspired diatribes!
07-01-2010, 08:02 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nesster Quote
"there you go again" - Ronald Reagan

Obama has yet to spend more than all other presidents combined, or add to debt more than all other presidents combined.

Of course, you'll next be accusing him of Clintonian lack of principle, when he follows through on the spending cuts part of his program.

For those who have been following ghosts and projections instead of reality, Obama is not the socialist spender people - on the right and left - seem to think he is. All along he's been talking in terms that in the past would have been fiscally conservative - though with the progressive twist of actually looking several years down the road and trying to head off future problems.

He's always spoken about any spending being paid for - we may disagree about the assumptions, but at least he's putting that on paper. Unlike the Republicans who ought to know better.

And, if you read my post this morning about the recession compared to the depression, you'd maybe understand how close we were/are to another depression here and in the other developed countries. I think Bush acted with courage and *presidentially* when he initiated some of the financial rescue efforts, and worked with the incoming Obama to give Obama at least a walking start to the inherited problem.
How many of these goals have been accomplished?

QuoteQuote:
The Communist Takeover Of
America - 45 Declared Goals
From Greg Swank
12-4-2

You are about to read a list of 45 goals that found their way down the halls of our great Capitol back in 1963. As you read this, 39 years later, you should be shocked by the events that have played themselves out. I first ran across this list 3 years ago but was unable to attain a copy and it has bothered me ever since. Recently, Jeff Rense posted it on his site and I would like to thank him for doing so. Jeff Rense Program

Communist Goals (1963) Congressional Record--Appendix, pp. A34-A35 January 10, 1963

Current Communist Goals EXTENSION OF REMARKS OF HON. A. S. HERLONG, JR. OF FLORIDA IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES Thursday, January 10, 1963 .

Mr. HERLONG. Mr. Speaker, Mrs. Patricia Nordman of De Land, Fla., is an ardent and articulate opponent of communism, and until recently published the De Land Courier, which she dedicated to the purpose of alerting the public to the dangers of communism in America.

At Mrs. Nordman's request, I include in the RECORD, under unanimous consent, the following "Current Communist Goals," which she identifies as an excerpt from "The Naked Communist," by Cleon Skousen:

[From "The Naked Communist," by Cleon Skousen]

1. U.S. acceptance of coexistence as the only alternative to atomic war.

2. U.S. willingness to capitulate in preference to engaging in atomic war.

3. Develop the illusion that total disarmament [by] the United States would be a demonstration of moral strength.

4. Permit free trade between all nations regardless of Communist affiliation and regardless of whether or not items could be used for war.

5. Extension of long-term loans to Russia and Soviet satellites.

6. Provide American aid to all nations regardless of Communist domination.

7. Grant recognition of Red China. Admission of Red China to the U.N.

8. Set up East and West Germany as separate states in spite of Khrushchev's promise in 1955 to settle the German question by free elections under supervision of the U.N.

9. Prolong the conferences to ban atomic tests because the United States has agreed to suspend tests as long as negotiations are in progress.

10. Allow all Soviet satellites individual representation in the U.N.

11. Promote the U.N. as the only hope for mankind. If its charter is rewritten, demand that it be set up as a one-world government with its own independent armed forces. (Some Communist leaders believe the world can be taken over as easily by the U.N. as by Moscow. Sometimes these two centers compete with each other as they are now doing in the Congo.)

12. Resist any attempt to outlaw the Communist Party.

13. Do away with all loyalty oaths.

14. Continue giving Russia access to the U.S. Patent Office.

15. Capture one or both of the political parties in the United States.

16. Use technical decisions of the courts to weaken basic American institutions by claiming their activities violate civil rights.

17. Get control of the schools. Use them as transmission belts for socialism and current Communist propaganda. Soften the curriculum. Get control of teachers' associations. Put the party line in textbooks.

18. Gain control of all student newspapers.

19. Use student riots to foment public protests against programs or organizations which are under Communist attack.

20. Infiltrate the press. Get control of book-review assignments, editorial writing, policy-making positions.

21. Gain control of key positions in radio, TV, and motion pictures.

22. Continue discrediting American culture by degrading all forms of artistic expression. An American Communist cell was told to "eliminate all good sculpture from parks and buildings, substitute shapeless, awkward and meaningless forms."

23. Control art critics and directors of art museums. "Our plan is to promote ugliness, repulsive, meaningless art."

24. Eliminate all laws governing obscenity by calling them "censorship" and a violation of free speech and free press.

25. Break down cultural standards of morality by promoting pornography and obscenity in books, magazines, motion pictures, radio, and TV.

26. Present homosexuality, degeneracy and promiscuity as "normal, natural, healthy."

27. Infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with "social" religion. Discredit the Bible and emphasize the need for intellectual maturity, which does not need a "religious crutch."

28. Eliminate prayer or any phase of religious expression in the schools on the ground that it violates the principle of "separation of church and state."

29. Discredit the American Constitution by calling it inadequate, old-fashioned, out of step with modern needs, a hindrance to cooperation between nations on a worldwide basis.

30. Discredit the American Founding Fathers. Present them as selfish aristocrats who had no concern for the "common man."

31. Belittle all forms of American culture and discourage the teaching of American history on the ground that it was only a minor part of the "big picture." Give more emphasis to Russian history since the Communists took over.

32. Support any socialist movement to give centralized control over any part of the culture--education, social agencies, welfare programs, mental health clinics, etc.

33. Eliminate all laws or procedures which interfere with the operation of the Communist apparatus.

34. Eliminate the House Committee on Un-American Activities.

35. Discredit and eventually dismantle the FBI.

36. Infiltrate and gain control of more unions.

37. Infiltrate and gain control of big business.

38. Transfer some of the powers of arrest from the police to social agencies. Treat all behavioral problems as psychiatric disorders which no one but psychiatrists can understand [or treat].

39. Dominate the psychiatric profession and use mental health laws as a means of gaining coercive control over those who oppose Communist goals.

40. Discredit the family as an institution. Encourage promiscuity and easy divorce.

41. Emphasize the need to raise children away from the negative influence of parents. Attribute prejudices, mental blocks and retarding of children to suppressive influence of parents.

42. Create the impression that violence and insurrection are legitimate aspects of the American tradition; that students and special-interest groups should rise up and use ["]united force["] to solve economic, political or social problems.

43. Overthrow all colonial governments before native populations are ready for self-government.

44. Internationalize the Panama Canal.

45. Repeal the Connally reservation so the United States cannot prevent the World Court from seizing jurisdiction [over domestic problems. Give the World Court jurisdiction] over nations and individuals alike.
07-01-2010, 08:35 AM   #11
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And this is significant how? I thought Reagan made many of these items moot, and the presidents who accomplished the first few items are:
Nixon - Detente, No president has advocated this, Reagan suggested this, every president has enforced export limitations, moot (though the last remaining communist power, China, is our moneybags now), moot (how many communist bloc countries are communist now?), Nixon - China opening, Reagan era events made this moot, and all presidents have seen the US best interest in limiting atomic testing - once you are in charge and privy to the info, you don't go acting foolishly. And so on.

Googling this stuff I see this has been a Glenn Beck thing of late. I also saw some loony toon stuff about Obama's citizenship, being a crypto Communist, and so on.

I also saw stuff about the '63 folks - they were paranoid cold war freaks, full of communist conspiracy among eminent americans...

News flash: Communist Russia no longer exists.

Is this really the krap being fed to people as some kind of truth?


And I note the true reason for this drivel: it is to distract attention from what is really going on now, and to foment hate
07-01-2010, 08:53 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nesster Quote
...........
And I note the true reason for this drivel: it is to distract attention from what is really going on now, and to foment hate
Absolutely true, and this is what American politics today appears to be all about. Forget about rational discussion, intellect against intellect, value system against value system.

Introduce some hatred into the discussion, appeal to extremism, use bogey man concepts, toss around meaningless words such as communism and socialism (meaningless because they have long since lost their true meaning and the average man on the street would only know that a socialist is "like Obama").

Above all - never LISTEN to what your opponent is saying, just interpret it and use the most biased and hateful interpretation that you can.

Finally, never admit that you were wrong or that your opponent was right
07-01-2010, 09:24 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevewig Quote
Absolutely true, and this is what American politics today appears to be all about. Forget about rational discussion, intellect against intellect, value system against value system.

Introduce some hatred into the discussion, appeal to extremism, use bogey man concepts, toss around meaningless words such as communism and socialism (meaningless because they have long since lost their true meaning and the average man on the street would only know that a socialist is "like Obama").

Above all - never LISTEN to what your opponent is saying, just interpret it and use the most biased and hateful interpretation that you can.

Finally, never admit that you were wrong or that your opponent was right
All good points, but in our (the American people) defense, " just interpret it and use the most biased and hateful interpretation that you can.", is what we have been taught by the news media for many, many years now. It has become second nature.
07-01-2010, 09:38 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Parallax Quote
All good points, but in our (the American people) defense, " just interpret it and use the most biased and hateful interpretation that you can.", is what we have been taught by the news media for many, many years now. It has become second nature.
Erm, please check your terms. The traditional news media (the Cronkite CBS as an example) went out of its way to get the facts and to present them in a middle of the road fashion. They sought to be even handed about political coverage. The newsmen truly saw their roles as a responsibility. Ditto for the news magazines etc.

These are labled as 'liberal' media by those whose fringe beliefs don't merit a significant portion of news time. (And I remember, these same media were labled as 'establisment / reactionary' by the other set of fringe believers.)

Even today, the 'liberal' NEWS media attempts, however poorly, to strike a non-partisan balance. Unfortunately the 'equal time' requirement has resulted in sound byte journalism and unexamined 'here's the republican, here's the democrat' style of presentation. This of course is shallow and boring.

What you are talking about is INFOTAINMENT, which on both radio and TV turned out to be a money maker, providing drama, excitement, paranoia, conspiracy, and rants, which soon overtook the more balanced approach of CNN. See, Fox had a problem: they spun up a cable news network to challenge CNN for market share. The business model is a good one: programming is cheap to create. But how to make inroads into CNN? They hit paydirt with conservative opinionating. This was a new thing in TV 'journalism'. It allowed Fox to take market share from CNN and make a lot of profit.

This style of INFOTAINMENT, this style of paranoia tends to lend itself moreso to right wing thinking styles than to left wing ones. Not to say there aren't leftist paranoiac conspiracy theorists, there are plenty, only that such don't seem to lend themselves to commercialization as readily.

MSNBC's nightly block of progressive political shows is a latecomer, and doesn't quite carry the whiff of wacko the worst of Fox has. (I hope/presume there are conservative shows that attempt to be thoughtful yet partisan. Are there?) The other style of progressive political show would be the John Stewart type of thing, though these aren't exactly partisan.

So yes, some portion of America has turned to this INFOTAINMENT which encourages what you say.

And, to continue my rant ... the ONLY reason this crapola is seeing the light of day is that the likes of Glenn Beck need to dredge up stuff like this in order to maintain his faux outrage and thereby TV ratings. This sludge from '63 was already obsolete back then. Somehow we are to make the mental leap: communist take over, OMG all these things have happened, and Obama has 'deep communist connections' and isn't even American to boot... Sorry to say, Fox is a pox but a moneymaking one.

Last edited by Nesster; 07-01-2010 at 09:45 AM.
07-01-2010, 11:44 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Nesster Quote
Erm, please check your terms. The traditional news media (the Cronkite CBS as an example) went out of its way to get the facts and to present them in a middle of the road fashion. They sought to be even handed about political coverage. The newsmen truly saw their roles as a responsibility. Ditto for the news magazines etc.

These are labled as 'liberal' media by those whose fringe beliefs don't merit a significant portion of news time. (And I remember, these same media were labled as 'establisment / reactionary' by the other set of fringe believers.)

Even today, the 'liberal' NEWS media attempts, however poorly, to strike a non-partisan balance. Unfortunately the 'equal time' requirement has resulted in sound byte journalism and unexamined 'here's the republican, here's the democrat' style of presentation. This of course is shallow and boring.

What you are talking about is INFOTAINMENT, which on both radio and TV turned out to be a money maker, providing drama, excitement, paranoia, conspiracy, and rants, which soon overtook the more balanced approach of CNN. See, Fox had a problem: they spun up a cable news network to challenge CNN for market share. The business model is a good one: programming is cheap to create. But how to make inroads into CNN? They hit paydirt with conservative opinionating. This was a new thing in TV 'journalism'. It allowed Fox to take market share from CNN and make a lot of profit.

This style of INFOTAINMENT, this style of paranoia tends to lend itself moreso to right wing thinking styles than to left wing ones. Not to say there aren't leftist paranoiac conspiracy theorists, there are plenty, only that such don't seem to lend themselves to commercialization as readily.

MSNBC's nightly block of progressive political shows is a latecomer, and doesn't quite carry the whiff of wacko the worst of Fox has. (I hope/presume there are conservative shows that attempt to be thoughtful yet partisan. Are there?) The other style of progressive political show would be the John Stewart type of thing, though these aren't exactly partisan.

So yes, some portion of America has turned to this INFOTAINMENT which encourages what you say.

And, to continue my rant ... the ONLY reason this crapola is seeing the light of day is that the likes of Glenn Beck need to dredge up stuff like this in order to maintain his faux outrage and thereby TV ratings. This sludge from '63 was already obsolete back then. Somehow we are to make the mental leap: communist take over, OMG all these things have happened, and Obama has 'deep communist connections' and isn't even American to boot... Sorry to say, Fox is a pox but a moneymaking one.
+100

The failure of the Fourth Estate is one of the root causes of the problems. The pursuit of profits instead of truths has given television news the stink of a bad reality show.

There is no middle ground - who'll watch that?
There is no intelligent, reasoned discourse - who'll watch that?
There are no researched facts - it costs too much to do real, investigative reporting.
The formula is easy, just push all issues to the far left and far right, come up with mascots and colors and icons and keywords that get each side livid, and press Record.

The joke is that it's our reality. The joke, at the end of the day, is on us.
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