McCain surrogate Nancy Pfotenhauer says Kristol has "bought into the Obama campaign's party line."
There's a fascinating little subplot in the McCain campaign right now with McCainiacs of the old school turning on the Palin-Kristol-Schmidt machine. Kristol and the neocons are grooming Palin for 2012. Many of them have already discounted 2008, and are using this campaign as a platform for an even more extreme Republican future.
Today Congressman David Wu issued the following statement after voting against the financial rescue package brought to the floor of the House of Representatives:
“We currently face a serious threat to our economy, and I do believe that we need to act to protect Americans’ jobs, retirement, and financial security. Unfortunately, this hasty bill was not the right answer.
I committed to the people of my district that I wouldn’t vote for a bill that didn’t have adequate protection for taxpayers, and this bill did not.
Today’s bill put up taxpayer money without a commitment from the government that they would be paid back. Instead, the American people were told that some future president would offer some future Congress a proposal to help taxpayers recoup any losses that they suffered—with no guarantee that they’d ever see their money again.
I am committed to staying here as long as it takes to do the right thing, because the taxpayers deserve better than the bill we had today. They deserve a thoughtful solution with real investment protections. They deserve meaningful regulations to rein in the over-the-top excesses of Wall Street. They deserve to have the people who caused this problem bear some responsibility for fixing it. And they deserve a bill that doesn’t just hope that a handout to Wall Street will trickle down to benefit Main Street.”
October 3 Update: Today Congressman David Wu voted in favor of the revised financial
I appreciate the gentleman's courtesy, as I credit his mastery for bringing this bill before us today. Thanks to his leadership, the leadership of Speaker Pelosi, the cooperation of the Republicans, it is a far better bill. But unfortunately this is not likely to be the end of the bubbles. We must be extraordinarily careful if we are not to compromise the next rescue. Remember long-term capital management, the hedge funds? What happens if the hedge funds are next? Any real rescue must include bankruptcy equity for homeowners. This is not just a moral issue; it's the key to stabilizing home values currently in free fall.
We cannot continue to bail out with borrowed money. No bill should be enacted without a payback from the financial services sector. Not a hint of a promise to pay back in five years. And at the core, we are ignoring the fundamental question about the size and scale of the financial services industry that is in trouble not just because of a lack of regulation, but because we had too many people pursuing unsustainable business practices.
We have seen an irresponsible bill change into a responsible bill. It's not as good as it should be and sadly may be beside the point. I will vote no reluctantly hoping I am wrong but fearing that I am right.
The unprecedented outpouring of emotion and advice from Oregonians about our financial crisis has been the silver lining on a dark cloud. If anything, the responses are more intense and widespread than those to the war in Iraq, or to any of the myriad calamities and momentous developments in the dozen-plus years I have been in Congress. The American people understand the significance of this financial meltdown, and they are asking all the right questions.
Here’s what I’m hearing: People are demanding accountability, and no golden parachutes. Instead of using tens of billions of taxpayer dollars to reward the Wall Street executives who drove us into this ditch, we should insist on ‘clawback provisions’ to ensure that the people who created this mess bear some of the financial burden as well. Congressional leaders are right to be skeptical of a $700 billion bailout, and should not rush to conclusions. People are insisting that Congress understand the depth of this problem and what might be on the horizon. Could the heavily leveraged, murky world of hedge funds become the next crisis?
People are clear that if there is going to be some relief it ought to protect Main Street, not just Wall Street, and make a difference to people across America who are caught in this financial firestorm and are at risk of losing their homes and businesses.
People want to make sure that they receive fair value for the investments of their tax dollars. Whether it is a loan guarantee or a capital infusion, Americans want to know that they have a chance to get their money back. If there is a profit to be made, it ought to come back to the taxpayers and the US Treasury.
Americans are asking hard questions about whether taxpayer assistance means more borrowed money. Many people feel that we should tax or surcharge the people who profited from this rollercoaster, instead of adding to the debt burden for future generations, which only puts us further at the mercy of foreign investors.
People are, without exception, outraged at getting a three-page proposal from the Bush administration in the dead of night that would concentrate all power, with no checks and balances, in the hands of the Secretary of the Treasury -- the same Secretary who refused to bail out Lehman Brothers and thought that the economy was fundamentally on track. Finally, and most importantly, people think that we ought to know what’s involved, and we ought to understand the details before we put taxpayers’ money at risk. If it takes an extra day, an extra week, an extra month to get this right — that’s just fine.
At a particularly stressful time, amid stock market tumult and a 24-hour news cycle, I am encouraged that Oregonians have the presence of mind to counsel deliberate, thoughtful action. I hear you loud and clear, and will do everything within my power to craft solutions that address your concerns.
Peter Defazio (D - Eugene and Southwest Oregon):
The House of Representatives rejected the $700 bailout yesterday. Distinguished economists across the world have stated it would not have solved the problem at hand. However, we can potentially solve this liquidity problem at little cost to the taxpayer. I am proposing that Congress drop the Paulson Plan, and instead pass the No BAILOUTS Act. The No BAILOUTS Act provides an alternative to the Paulson Proposal to address the current credit crunch. Once Congress addresses the liquidity shortfalls in our financial markets, a Democratic Congress can turn to Democratic solutions to address the broader economic crises we face today. Specifically, Congress can work to resolve the housing crisis across the country and pass effective job stimulus, which is the response Main Street America expects and deserves.
While Democrats and Republicans may disagree on the underlying solutions to solve the economic crises we face, the No BAILOUTS Act - a regulatory based proposal - has the potential for significant bipartisan support.
The Paulson Premise Flawed
Simon Johnson, a former chief economist as the International Monetary Fund, stated today in the New York Times of Paulson’s plan, “It’s our view that this package, in a fundamental sense, will not solve the problem.” Other economic analysts noted yesterday that the credit markets around the world were almost entirely dysfunctional even when political leaders and investors assumed that Congress had reached a deal and would easily approve the bailout. There is no reason to believe Paulson’s plan will work.
We have credible alternatives to the Paulson/Bush $700 billion gamble. William Isaac, the chairman of the FDIC during the previous worst financial crisis in the United States during the 1980s, believes Congress can address the current crisis with simple changes to Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rules. Mr. Isaac points out that while we face serious financial challenges today, many banks are still in good shape. This allows Congress to take swift, uncomplicated steps to ensure the financial markets return to working order. After that, we can work to resolve the housing crisis and pass effective job stimulus.
Today I am offering an alternative to the Wall Street bailout that will correct the capital shortfalls experienced by many financial institutions and help protect the integrity and quality of the securities market. My plan could be implemented promptly meeting the demands of the Bush Administration to act immediately without putting the American taxpayer on the hook for billions of dollars.
No BAILOUTS Act
Bringing Accounting, Increased Liquidity, Oversight and Upholding Taxpayer Security
1) Require the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to require an economic value standard to measure the capital of financial institutions.
This bill will require SEC to implement a rule to suspend the application of fair value accounting standards to financial institutions, which marks assets to the market value, no matter the conditions of the market. When no meaningful market exists, as is the current market for mortgage backed securities, this standard requires institutions to value assets at fire-sale prices. This creates a capital shortfall on paper. Using the economic value standard as bank examines have traditionally done will immediately correct the capital shortfalls experienced by many institutions.
2) Require the Securities and Exchange Commission to restricting naked short sells permanently
This bill will require SEC to implement a rule that blocks naked selling, selling a stock short without first borrowing the shares or ensuring the shares can be borrowed. Such practices many times harm the companies represented in the sales and hurt their efforts to raise capital. There is no economic value produced by naked short sales, but significant negative effects.
3) Require the Securities and Exchange Commission to restore the up-tick rule permanently.
This bill will require SEC to implement a rule that blocks short sales without an up-tick in the market. On September 19, 2008, the SEC approved a temporary pause of short selling in financial companies “to protect the integrity and quality of the securities market and strengthen investor confidence.” This rule prevents market crashes brought on by irrational short term market behavior.
4) “Net Worth Certificate Program”
This bill will require FDIC to implement a net worth certificate program. The FDIC would determine banks with short-term capital needs and the ability to financially recover in the foreseeable future. For those entities that qualify, the FDIC should purchase net worth certificates in these institutions. In exchange, these institutions issue promissory notes to repay the FDIC, counting the amount “borrowed” as capital on their balance sheets. This exchange provides short term capital, with not cash outlay. Interest rates on the certificates and the FDIC notes should be identical so no subsidy is necessary.
Participating banks must be subject to strict oversight by the FDIC including oversight of top executive compensation and if necessary the removal of poor management. Financial records and business plans should be subject to scrutiny while participating in the program.
In 1982, Congress approved a program, known as the Net Worth Certificate Program, that allowed banks and thrifts to apply for immediate capital assistance. From 1982 to 1993, banks with total assets of $40 billion participated in the program. The majority of these banks, 75%, required no further assistance beyond the certificate program.
5) Increase the FDIC Insurance limit from $100,000 to $250,000.
The bill will require the FDIC raise its limit to provide depositors confidence that their money is safe and help eliminate runs on banks which are destabilizing to the industry.
Ms. Hooley has not posted any comments on her congressional website explaining why she voted in favor of the bill.
Mr. Walden has not posted any comments on his congressional website explaining why he voted in favor of the bill.
Sharing a bed with someone could temporarily reduce your brain power - at least if you are a man - Austrian scientists suggest.
When men spend the night with a bed mate their sleep is disturbed, whether they make love or not, and this impairs their mental ability the next day.
The lack of sleep also increases a man's stress hormone levels.
According to the New Scientist study, women who share a bed fare better because they sleep more deeply.
Here's one of their very strange, though surprisingly agreeable maps.
US personalities vary by region, say researchers
Research finds Americans on eastern seaboard "more anxious and impulsive" while westerners are comparatively relaxed.
May 2004 June 2004 August 2004 September 2004 October 2004 November 2004 January 2005 March 2005 April 2005 May 2005 June 2005 July 2005 September 2005 October 2005 November 2005 December 2005 January 2006 February 2006 March 2006 April 2006 May 2006 June 2006 July 2006 August 2006 September 2006 October 2006 November 2006 December 2006 January 2007 March 2007 June 2007 July 2007 August 2007 September 2007 October 2007 February 2008 March 2008 April 2008 May 2008 June 2008 July 2008 August 2008 September 2008 October 2008 January 2009
Subscribe to Posts [Atom]