“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Rumblings. Congress Needs to Act on Pending Financial Collapse

Forget how we got here. Forget who did it. Forget who will benefit. The rumblings are unmistakable. Time is short. Without action the entire financial system is coming down. There will be no place to hide.

We need leadership to make decisions that will be unpopular and probably finish political careers. That is the type of men we need but not what we have.

Courage and action. We are down to days.


  1. Spain, France

    Demand fell at an auction of Spanish bonds last week and France offered its debt at a discount to market prices as some investors shunned the securities.

    Sept. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Demand may recover at a 7 billion- euro ($10.3 billion) auction of German government debt today after the U.S. plan to bail out faltering banks sent yields soaring, according to Bank of America Corp.

  2. Forbes:
    ..."In fact, there are a few reasons why the government's interventions probably won't be quite as expensive as people think. For starters, some experts say it's far from certain that the U.S. government will even need all the money it has budgeted. They say policy makers set their spending limits on the high side to make clear to investors that the government would do whatever it takes to make financial markets work again. And once the government's rescue program begins to establish prices for currently unmarketable securities, the hope is that the market will start functioning again before the U.S. actually has to buy $700 billion worth of them."

  3. Not acting will be the expensive part.

  4. You Are Observing The Death Of Crotchety Harry Truman

    Will never forget when that happened, fishing on the Grande Rhonde, Oregon. What's that hell of a black cloud coming our way?

    On another blog, someone suggested, in addition to the banks, college loans, car loans, credit card debt, shouldn't we be considering overdue bar tabs to be covered in the new legislation?

  5. A key quote in this morning’s Senate hearing about the Paulson bailout is worth repeating. This comes from Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown, a Democrat:

    “Like my colleagues, my phones have been ringing off the hook. The sentiment from Ohioans about this proposal is universally negative.”

    Not “overwhelmingly negative.” Not “deeply suspicious.” Not “extremely upset.” Universally negative.

    I’ll state the obvious: Members of Congress aren’t generally in the habit of passing historic and spectacularly unpopular legislation five weeks before election day.

    Michelle Malkin

    I can't seem to get a handle on how serious it is, or isn't.

  6. Calm Down, We're Better Off Than Ever

    I hope this doesn't turn out to be the dumbest post ever.

  7. Michelle Malkin has long passed her natural pay grade.

  8. "The collapse of emerging market economies will shake investors to the core. The great unwind has only just begun," said Albert Edwards, the bank's global strategist.
    "The big surprise in store is what could happen in China. The potential for a deep recession in the US is already on the radar screen, but people will be stunned if China's economy contracts, as I believe it will. Investors could be massively caught out," he said.
    "The consensus has a touching belief that emerging markets will prove resilient despite a deep downturn in developed economies. My view is that an outright contraction in global GDP is entirely possible next year."
    "The emerging market boom is totally tied up with a decade of ballooning current account deficits in the US. Put that into reverse and you'll be surprised what pops out of the woodwork."
    Mr Edwards said the vast accumulation of foreign exchange reserves – led by China with $1.8 trillion – had provided the "rocket fuel" of liquidity for frontier markets. This virtuous circle has now turned vicious as America tightens its belt. Countries in Asia and Latin America are intervening to prop up their currencies, causing reserves to fall.
    "We could see monthly trade surpluses in the US within a year. The emerging market liquidity squeeze will intensify ferociously, and assets linked to the region will become toxic waste. That includes previously resilient banks such as HSBC, Standard Chartered and Banco Santander," he said.
    The gloomy forecast comes as Fitch Ratings warns of mounting distress for banks in China, where debt has been shunted off books to circumvent state limits on credit growth

  9. The reason you can't get a handle on it, Deuce, is you're being bullshitted. Their numbers don't add up with their stated intentions.

  10. ^....from this morning' Telegraph

  11. Maybe so, but she's right about there being a lot of resistance to this bailout. At least among the voters, don't know about the politicians, they haven't voted.

  12. Oh, that was "Michelle."

    Anyhoo, the numbers still don't add up.

    We're going to do this; but, it pisses me off, royally.

  13. Notice that on a 747, there are no controls aft the cockpit. No voting and no matters of opinion from seat A1 on back.

  14. I know they are telling NOT the whole truth....they do not dare.

  15. Ron Paul is against the bailout.

  16. No chance they're telling the "whole truth." They're going to bail out every bad auto loan, credit card account, second mortgage, line of credit, and "gambling debt" of every bank in New York.

  17. I was listening to some commentary about how European countries handle housing. In short, they have standards when making a loan, like we used to do, they also have some back up programs for folks that fail, most of them. On the other hand, in France I think it was, you don't want to file bankruptcy, as it stays with you all your life long.

    They were talking about England, Spain, France and Germany.

  18. The people in the back of the 747 do elect the pilot and co-pilot once every two and six years.

  19. Then come the CDSs. Find out who has the exposure, there, and you'll know who we're "really" bailing out.

    I'll bet it's spelled C.I.T.I.

  20. Evidently those big European Banks have a whole bunch of this stuff. Their investors probably didn't like what they heard at the hearing, yesterday.

  21. I won't be making any forecasts about any of this. I never took an economics or accounting class in college, and my grasp is very limited.

    Ash, is it true Obama is for doing away with the primary home - residential home - exemption in his capital gains tax hike proposal?


  22. That gives you a "leg-up," Bobal.

  23. The housing market started to collapse last year, so why do we only have a few days to take all that bad paper off the hands of the banks? Why do we need to maintain the status quo, and allow the same companies and the same assholes who got into this mess continue as before? We're being asked to privatize reward and nationalize risk. I call Bolshevik.

  24. You're right, T.

    Look, we're going to have some pretty rough times, no matter what. The thing is: If we "Take our Medicine," now, it'll be bad. If we put it off with a bunch of bullshit, and let the Crooked Bastards go back to doing the exact same they've been doing it will be disastrous.

  25. We're going to have to bail these motherfuckers out. We have no choice. Everybody knows it. We're mad as hell; but we know we have to do it.

    However, I hope they "Investigate" these sorry cocksuckers until the day they die. If one of them ever so much as spit on a sidewalk I hope they throw the bastard in jail and throw away the key. Hank, Motherfucking, Paulson, included.

  26. My Congressman, Jon Shadegg, on the phone last night, said he's voting NO.

    That it is a scam to rip off the Taxpayer and that the private markets had been correcting themselves, at forty cents on the dollar.

    The folks gettin' the haircut have deep political pockets.

    We'll see, if Jon stays his stated course, I'll vote him.
    If he falters, I will not.

  27. Give Paulson a Clean Bill
    By Lawrence Kudlow
    Honestly. A clean bill as requested by Treasury man Henry Paulson, along with John McCain's oversight board, can help fix the credit-crunch problem. It needn't be this hard.

    According to the Paulson plan, distressed assets will be sold by banks through a reverse auction (the low bid wins) to various investment funds, hedgies, private-equity boys, and other banks. And taxpayers will have a strong ownership position in these asset sales. When the assets are worked out over time -- as they will be once housing and the economy recover -- taxpayers will actually make money on the deal.

  28. Where is the $700 Billion comin' from, duece?

    It is not in the Federals current account.

    It is not im a surplus lock box.

    Where are the Feds going to borrow it?

  29. Or are we going to be raising taxes, to bail out investment bankers?

  30. I'll betcha Shadegg is right, DR.

    Hank Paulson looked like a little kid trying to pull a fast one, yesterday.

    Somebody's peeing on our leg, and telling us "how warm the rain is."

  31. Question for those who know

    If no one knows who owns these distressed mortgages, who forecloses when the payments stop coming?

  32. Newt, who has always been one of my favorite politicos:

    One prominent conservative urging Congress to step hard on the brakes in the $700 billion bailout plan is Newt Gingrich, the former speaker of the House of Representatives.

    In Sunday's National Review online, Gingrich writes: "Congress was designed by the Founding Fathers to move slowly, precisely to avoid the sudden panic of a one-week solution that becomes a 20-year mess."

    In a conversation with NPR's Melissa Block, Gingrich says he thinks the bailout plan is "just wrong," and that "it's likely to fail, and it's likely to make the situation worse over time." A transcript of their conversation follows.

    Q: This $700 billion bailout plan, this potential 20-year mess that you're talking about, comes from a Republican administration, comes from your own party. What's happened to Republican faith in small government and free markets?

    A: Well, I think you have a Goldman Sachs chief of staff to the president and the Goldman Sachs secretary of the Treasury. And they convinced the president that the American people ought to send $700 billion to Wall Street, which I think is a very, very bad idea, and I would argue is a very un-Republican idea. I don't understand what they think they're doing.

    Q: Do you feel betrayed by the Bush administration and by the president?

    A: Well, betrayed is too strong a word. I think what they're doing is just wrong. And I think that it's likely to fail, and it's likely to make the situation worse over time. And I think that [U.S. Treasury] Secretary [Henry] Paulson has shown almost no understanding of how a democracy operates. His initial draft would have given him $700 billion of your tax money with no oversight, no judicial review, no accountability. I mean, we're not a dictatorship.

    Q: You know, when congressional leaders met on Thursday night with Secretary Paulson and with the Fed chair, Ben Bernanke, the message was dire. You heard Sen. Chris Dodd saying they were told we are maybe days away from a complete meltdown of our financial system. Don't you think that there's an imminent crisis here, that if they were to wait, there could be really drastic results?

    A: To be honest, I don't know. Secretary Paulson has been consistently wrong for a year-and-a-half. He told us for a year-and-a-half this wasn't a dire crisis; this wasn't going to happen. So the very people who told us for a long time not to worry about it are — I know they're panicked. Whether that means that we should be panicked, I'm not sure. And I think the purpose of the Congress, the purpose of the House and Senate, is to be a check and balance on the executive branch, not to automatically write blank checks.

    Q: What if you're wrong?

    A: Well, if I'm wrong, then we're going to have a significant problem. And if I'm right, we're going to have a bigger problem. So I think part of the question is, why can't this be done out in an open debate, have an openly marked-up bill, have the American people know what's being asked of them?

    I was just reading an analysis by a very sophisticated person who said that there's been at least one leak from a congressional staff briefing by Secretary Paulson, in which he clearly indicated he intended to buy assets at above their market value. And that — why should the taxpayer do that? I mean, why are we not saying, 'We'll provide enough capital to avoid collapse, but we're not going to provide enough capital to guarantee the profits of Wall Street people' — who, after all, last year, at Goldman Sachs alone had three people each earning $73 million a year. Now, why should we bail them out?

    Q: What are you saying the incentive would be for, say, Secretary Paulson or Ben Bernanke to be rushing something through if it weren't urgently needed? What would their motivation be for that?

    A: A couple of things — first of all, they're probably genuinely panicked. And I think that's real. I think they're tired; I think they've been consistently wrong, and now they're looking at a precipice that's very frightening. I think, second, that they have a very Wall Street-centric view of the world. And I think that rather than saying, 'What are the big, profound changes we need to fix America?,' they are saying, 'What are the immediate quick fixes for Wall Street?' — which I think, in the long run, just makes us weaker and sicker.

    I think, third, they know that if they don't rush it through, it has no hope, because as the American people learn the details, they're just going to scream at their House and Senate members.

  33. why can't this be done out in an open debate, have an openly marked-up bill, have the American people know what's being asked of them?

  34. Secretary Paulson, ... clearly indicated he intended to buy assets at above their market value

  35. I always believed Newt to be a Standard Bearer for better government in our Republic, still do.

  36. Just miss a few payments, Rat. You'll find out who owns'em.

  37. A longer and more detailed analysis, by Newt, in the National Review follows:
    Read it all

    Stop the Federal Socialists now, before they turn our Republic upside down and on its' ear.

  38. Kudlow, he works for GE, does he not?

  39. There is the real possibility that if you authorize the $700B, you may never have to use it.

    I have a box full, probably, several million DM, whose one time owners must have wished the German government at the time, would have acted earlier.

    We are not talking about someone's car loan, we are talking about the worldwide financial system.

    The case is being analyzed on a micro economic basis, when it is a macro economic issue fundamental to the global financial system.

    It is not a $700B expense or transfer payment. It is an investment, albeit involuntary, with a substantial expectation of a return. The consequential impact of not making the investment is in the trillions and financial ruination of perhaps 400,000,000 people.

  40. He says this is the "Right" road forward, one which will defeat the Federal Socialists and still solve the problem.

    Four reform steps will have capital flowing with no government bureaucracy and no taxpayer burden.

    First, suspend the mark-to-market rule which is insanely driving companies to unnecessary bankruptcy. If short selling can be suspended on 799 stocks (an arbitrary number and a warning of the rule by bureaucrats which is coming under the Paulson plan), the mark-to-market rule can be suspended for six months and then replaced with a more accurate three year rolling average mark-to-market.

    Second, repeal Sarbanes-Oxley. It failed with Freddy Mac. It failed with Fannie Mae. It failed with Bear Stearns. It failed with Lehman Brothers. It failed with AIG. It is crippling our entrepreneurial economy. I spent three days this week in Silicon Valley. Everyone agreed Sarbanes-Oxley was crippling the economy. One firm told me they would bring more than 20 companies public in the next year if the law was repealed. Its Sarbanes-Oxley’s $3 million per startup annual accounting fee that is keeping these companies private.

    Third, match our competitors in China and Singapore by going to a zero capital gains tax. Private capital will flood into Wall Street with zero capital gains and it will come at no cost to the taxpayer. Even if you believe in a static analytical model in which lower capital gains taxes mean lower revenues for the Treasury, a zero capital gains tax costs much less than the Paulson plan. And if you believe in a historic model (as I do), a zero capital gains tax would lead to a dramatic increase in federal revenue through a larger, more competitive and more prosperous economy.

    Fourth, immediately pass an “all of the above” energy plan designed to bring home $500 billion of the $700 billion a year we are sending overseas. With that much energy income the American economy would boom and government revenues would grow.

  41. Even more details of the Right Course, Here, from American Solutions

    to show you how much the rule of law has decayed, we were told that 799 companies will be protected by stopping the ability to sell short on their stock-that is to gamble that they're going to get weaker. Why 799? Why not 797? Why not 801? Who's on the list to be protected by the government, and who isn't on the list to be protected, and who made that decision?

    This is not the rule of law. This is not what we thought America was supposed to be about. This is very dangerous government by politicians, lobbyists, and bureaucrats, who are making decisions in secret without the country knowing what the ground rules are.

    As a principled conservative it is even more sobering to see the amount of economic power being centralized in Washington with these interventions. Deals are being struck behind closed doors with little or no transparency. Things are happening at the intersection of politics and finance that we, the American people, know nothing about except the potential price tag we will pay. These many new federal responsibilities will politicize finances at giant institutions and will guarantee massive increases in lobbying.

    Lobbyists are a consequence of big government not a cause of it. The more money centered in government the more value there will be in hiring a lobbyist. The more lobbyists are hired the more politics will be dominated by the political contributions of the lobbyists and their employers. The more power the lobbyists and their employers amass over the politicians the more politics will define the economy. It will become more profitable to influence a politician than to invent a product. If the market rejects you or your ideas fail to compete, the help of your lobbyist may be all you need. Your lobbyist may be able to get government to protect you from your own failure.

  42. Deuce, if Paulson had been more Forthcoming, yesterday, I'd feel better. But, he was Evasive, dissembling, and, seemingly, disengenuous.

    He looked like a guilty preteen.




  44. If it is an "investment" duece, why pay above market value?

    That smacks of "investing" in a new F-150, with the same chance of a positive return, over time.

    If this bailout is needed to "save the World and the Global Market" then the Chinese and the Sauds can DONATE the money.
    If they are not willing to, then it does not need to be done.

  45. If this was truly a "crisis," and this was the absolute, best action they, it would seem, would Describe "Exactly" what it is they want to do.

    Every time someone tried to get that information Paulson, basically, told us it was just "too complicated" for us to understand.

    Well, I'm telling you, Bubba: That ain't no way to get MY vote.

  46. In other words, "I've gotta have your money "Right Now," to get My Plan into operation; But, I don't "Exactly" know what My Plan is, Yet.


  47. We are now at a crossroads between a policy of returning to the fundamentals and doing what is necessary even if there are huge political opponents or doing what is wrong to appease the news media and the lobbyists even if those destructive acts will create more costs, more decay and more weakness in the future.

    It is vital that the next seven weeks be a clear contest between a coalition committed to returning to the fundamentals which President Reagan and Prime Minister Thatcher used to build 20 years of economic success and a coalition committed to the big lobbying, big bureaucracy, high tax, unionized trial lawyer dominated future of decay.

    This choice is made more complicated because many of the current Bush Administration policies are simply wrong and cannot be defended by fundamental principles of sound economic growth.

    Just as TEAM43 made a fundamental error in June of 2003 in Iraq, one which left US with no "good" options, they are attempting the same thing, now, with this bail out.

    One that will lead the United States down the wrong road, requiring twenty years or more to fix.

    Why can't this be done out in an open debate, have an openly marked-up bill, have the American people know what's being asked of them?

  48. Warren Buffet says it's NOT a "Solvency" issue; it's a "Liquidity" issue.

    His idea is: If a bank wants to sell the treasury $10 Billion in crap let them sell $500 Million on the Open Market to set a "Price." Then the Treasury can pay "That Price."

    That makes sense.

  49. What's at stake is two very different futures for America built around two opposing value systems advocated by two coalitions of power.

    Down one road is a bureaucratic, insider-dominated system of litigation, regulation, and taxation with government dominance, with slow growth, expensive and scarce energy, and the eventual replacement of the United States by China and India as the world's most advanced and prosperous nations.

    Down the other road is a dynamic American economy producing its own energy, independent of dictators, using science and technology to create an exciting future, and continuing its role as the most prosperous and technologically advanced country in the world.

    Down this latter road too is the America we recognize, the America we want to preserve. An America that demonstrates and lives by the most important insight ever provided by the study of the science of economics -- that economic activity, like all human action, relies in the end on moral agency -- the moral agency of human freedom, the human freedom God enjoins for all His creatures.

    And that this freedom of individuals to go as far and as high as their talents can take them - this is the freedom that is the real source of any wealth and economic progress, a freedom in which the success of one benefits all. Causing a rising tide that lifts all boats is the work of encouraging individual achievement and excellence while discouraging the collectivist schemes and contrivances of opportunistic politicians.

    Because politicians and government can only take wealth they can never create it.

  50. DR: Or are we going to be raising taxes, to bail out investment bankers?

    This is a deal-breaker for me, $700billion on top of a bailout of Bear Stearns, Fannie, Freddy, and AIG. If McCain comes out in favor of the bailout, I don't care if Sarah campaigns the final seven weeks in a bikini, I ain't voting for them. If Obama comes out against the bailout, I don't care if Joe Biden dons a clown suit, they got my vote, because they will be the least socialist ticket. If both of them are for the bailout I'm staying home.

  51. Really, truly ...
    Read the whole piece

    Federal Socialism or a free Republic.

    The time to debate and decide is now, not later, after the dye has been cast.

    Why are the Federal Socialists afraid of an open debate?
    Why are they afraid of the normal Constituional process?

  52. Vote Barr '08, rather than staying home, Ms T.

    Sends a better message than the one of apathy percieved by not voting, at all.

  53. This comment has been removed by the author.

  54. deuce quoting Kudlow:

    "When the assets are worked out over time -- as they will be once housing and the economy recover -- taxpayers will actually make money on the deal."

    Rat, asked "If no one knows who owns these distressed mortgages, who forecloses when the payments stop coming?"

    My understanding of it is, Rat, that there are firms which have been hired to collect payments and foreclose when necessary. These firms don't own the mortgage, they service them. They take their fee and send the balance on up to the mortgage owners.

    The mortgages have been bundled into tranches and these tranches sold as securities which have a yield (pay interest) as well as a face value. The basic problem is, even though these securities have an income stream, the market has dried up - nobody wants to buy the suckers. They've got some value because the throw off income but again, they can't place a value on the security because no one wants to buy them. When evaluating your capital position you should use mark to market to establish the value. The market is giving a value of 0 because there is no bids (well actually they mark to last transaction I believe). If you are underweight on capital no bank will lend to you.

    So, what to do? Paulson is asking for the power to buy whatever he thinks is right at a price that he thinks is right. If he pays too little it won't help the capital position of the banks/securities holders and if he pays too much there won't be any profit for the taxpayer. He's basically asking for the power to make the market.

    These securities need to be unwound - broken apart where one can evaluate who owns what mortgages and how those mortgages are performing. There are good ones in there and there are bad ones.

    Who should do this? Who should foot the cost of this tedious unwinding? Paulson, Bush et al, are saying the government should. I say no. These jokers bought the suckers, they've got an income stream and they've got some value. They've got the incentive to work 'em out.

    Capitalism is evolutionary. The strong survive the weak die. There will be failures. When a big bank fails we can do like we did with the S&L's and unwind them at taxpayers expense, maybe even turn a profit. We could inject capital into the banks and take an ownership position but I would consider doing this only as a last resort because it is effectively nationalizing the suckers or creating entities we know we don't like such as Fannie and Freddie.

  55. If Obama comes out against the bailout,..

    LOL! How naive we still are.

  56. McCain Aide’s Firm Was Paid by Freddie Mac

    Published: September 23, 2008

    WASHINGTON — One of the giant mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis paid $15,000 a month from the end of 2005 through last month to a firm owned by Senator John McCain’s campaign manager, according to two people with direct knowledge of the arrangement.
    The disclosure undercuts a remark by Mr. McCain on Sunday night that the campaign manager, Rick Davis, had had no involvement with the company for the last several years.

    Mr. Davis’s firm received the payments from the company, Freddie Mac, until it was taken over by the government this month along with Fannie Mae, the other big mortgage lender whose deteriorating finances helped precipitate the cascading problems on Wall Street, the two people said.

    They said they did not recall Mr. Davis’s doing much substantive work for the company in return for the money, other than to speak to a political action committee of high-ranking employees in October 2006 on the approaching midterm Congressional elections. They said Mr. Davis’s firm, Davis Manafort, had been kept on the payroll because of his close ties to Mr. McCain, the Republican presidential nominee, who by 2006 was widely expected to run again for the White House."

  57. Maverick is surround by people, fairly close to him, who have financial arrangements he does not know of, or understand.

    Ms Fiorina and Mr Davis are just two examples of his purported ignorance.

    Seems ample evidence he is not ready for Prime Time.

  58. The McCain campaigne is denying that story, Ash. They say Davis hasn't worked for that firm since 2006.

    The Old Gray Whore Gets it Wrong, AGAIN.

  59. I just got off a call with a broker who's been trying to sell me on moving my accounts to him. They do their regular conference calls. He was spouting the "whole system will freeze" meme if they don't do a bailout.

    I started speculating on what the heck would that mean? Would a client such as Bombardier not pay its suppliers? He didn't think that was likely...

  60. Name one person inside the beltway who didn't get paid by Fannie or Freddie. I agree, it all stinks to high Heaven.

    Like the one guy said, If someone says we have to do it NOW, or we got to have it NOW, especially after it has been going on for several years, someones gonna get screwed.

    This is a "win-win" situation. Yeah, right, where the same guy (guys) wins twice.

  61. yeah, yeah, rufus the deny it but the money trail seems to be there:

    "Mr. Davis’s firm received the payments from the company, Freddie Mac, until it was taken over by the government this month along with Fannie Mae...


    Mr. Davis took a leave from Davis Manafort for the presidential campaign, but as an equity holder continues to benefit from its income.


    Jill Hazelbaker, a spokeswoman for the McCain campaign, did not dispute the payments to Mr. Davis’s firm


    Freddie Mac’s payments of roughly $500,000 to Davis Manafort, the people familiar with the arrangement said, began in late 2005, immediately after Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae disbanded an advocacy coalition that they had set up and hired Mr. Davis to run.

    From 2000 to the end of 2005, Mr. Davis received nearly $2 million as president of the coalition, the Homeownership Alliance, which the companies created to help them oppose new regulations and protect their status as federally chartered companies with implicit government backing."

  62. "One thing is certain. If taxpayers do not share in the potential profits from a bailout, someone else will. On Tuesday, the Federal Reserve announced that it was relaxing rules that require investors who take large stakes in banks to submit to longstanding regulations on transparency and managerial control. Private equity firms have pushed for the changes because they would like to become big investors in beaten-down banks but do not want to be regulated.

    Relaxing the rules invites more of the same type of opacity and risk-taking into banking that caused many of today’s financial problems. Politically, the Fed’s timing could not have been worse. Taxpayers are being asked to buy up banks’ junky assets, with little expectation of return. At the same time, private equity firms are being invited to make what are likely to be highly profitable investments in the same banks.

    That’s not a plan that lawmakers and voters can support. Congress has more work to do."

  63. Gag, I don't think this deal is nearly as important for me, and you as it is for Paulson, and Kudlow's Buddies.

  64. If the whole system freezes, as Ash's broker says, and like Ash was wondering, what does that mean?

    Will we get up and go to work tomorrow? Yes.

    Will there be gas at the gas stations? Yes.

    Will we be able to buy grocerys and get a drink at the EB? Yes

    Life goes on. Let it freeze. It might do some of those dipshits some good.

  65. The example that broker cited to me was:

    Look at a small furniture retailer in Iowa who needs to buy stock (furniture) next spring. He usually uses his line of credit to buy the stuff for resale. Either he won't be able to get the credit or it'll cost him a whole lot more unless the bailout goes through.

    Seems a reasonable consequence to me.

  66. Mr Davis is a principle in the firm, fellows.
    So while he did not draw a weekly check, he has a propietary interest.

    Misdirection, again.

  67. Just like Mr Keating, another fraudster, paying Ms Cindy and her daddy $250,000 and it not influencing John, since the check did not go in his account.

    Now Mr Davis says the payment of $15,000 a month, amounting to nearly $480,000, to his company was of no consequence, since he does not draw a salary.

    Who are they trying to kid?

  68. Ash, the brokers opinion that that furniture retailer will be credit-constrained might be correct. Or not. We don't know; because, it's Not Knowable.

    You see, it was an "opinion." A lot of those are going around, today.

    Personally, though, I doubt it.

  69. Even if it is 'constrained' too fuckin' bad.

    In all my reading on this Bailout the only support for it comes in the form of chicken little "the sky is falling" panic. I have seen no convincing description of why things will be so bad other then a paternalistic 'it's complicated'. Well, time to spell it out because I don't see much support for the bailout package.

  70. Well, Silver State & Choice Banks were delivered by the FDIC to Nevada State Bank and National Bank of AZ, depending upon the branch location, both subsidiaries of Zions Bank.

    A regional out of Salt Lake City.
    They'd loan to that funiture outlet, if he was in one of their their market.

  71. I can hear the moaning, even now, after we hand President Obama a check for $700 Billion, with instructions to Socialize both profit and risk in the Market.

    No Candidate With More Than 50% Support in Sept. Has Lost Presidential Race Since '48

    Sept. 24, 2008

    The economic turmoil on Wall Street and fear among voters about the nation's economy has boosted Democrat Barack Obama's presidential candidacy, giving him his first clear lead over Republican John McCain in the presidential race.

    Obama now leads McCain among likely voters by 52 percent to 43 percent, according to the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll.

    That is a significant swing from the most recent ABC/Washington Post poll earlier this month that gave McCain a slight 49-47 point edge.

    "It is all about the economy," ABC's chief Washington correspondent George Stephanopoulos told "Good Morning America" today. "People are angry and shocked and worried about the economy and that is all helping Barack Obama right now."

    The latest poll finding marks the first time that the Illinois senator has surpassed 50 percent support among likely voters in the presidential campaign -- a key coup for the Democratic candidate.

    Even if the poll is not perfectly wieghted, the headline from a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company of Burbank, CA tells the publicly percieved tale,
    none the less.

  72. 2007 Sales (mil.) - $35,510.0
    2007 Employees - 137,000


    $259,197 annual income per employee

    Disney Company Description

    The monarch of this magic kingdom is no man but a mouse -- Mickey Mouse. The Walt Disney Company is the world's #2 media conglomerate (behind Time Warner) with assets encompassing movies, music, publishing, television, and theme parks. Its TV holdings include the ABC television network and 10 broadcast stations, as well as a portfolio of cable networks including ABC Family, A&E Television Networks (37%-owned), and ESPN (80%). Walt Disney Studios produces films through such imprints as Walt Disney Pictures, Touchstone, Pixar, and Miramax. In addition, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts is one of the top theme park operators in the world, anchored by its popular Walt Disney World and Disneyland resorts.

  73. Well, I'm inclined to believe there's some serious sandbagging going on.

    But if you listen to trish's mother this is a serious crisis-on-the-rise and for that reason the deal will be done by Sunday. With luck, with Schumer's signal modification.

    Trish's mother has been known to be right. 2002-03 immediately comes to mind.

  74. She also predicted the S & L crisis.

    Then went to work for RTC. And subsequntly FDIC.

    Interesting note: The implicit rule at RTC was that from the day they received a given enterprise, the turnaround was 120 days.

  75. The implicit *understanding* was that the guilty shall not suffer.

  76. Why is Warren Buffet behaving as if this scam has already been signed into law?

  77. Because he knows it will.

    He's taking an advance position.

    Like back in the day, when I bought Chrsyler, before that bailout.

    I was in the Army, in Panama.
    Did not doubt for a moment that Uncle Sam would never let Dodge die.

    Bet all I had, some I didn't.

  78. I don't think he is mat, I think he saw a good deal and pounced. He'll make out if it passes and probably better if it doesn't.


    "McCain helped create this deregulated mess


    September 24, 2008

    How is it now possible for a reasonable voter to cast a ballot for John McCain?

    The total cost of rescuing the financial services sector, including past and proposed actions, exceeds $1-trillion, more than twice the record $438-billion deficit projected for this fiscal year.


    John McCain helped create this emergency. He's partly to blame for it. Under the circumstances, rewarding him by voting for him would be perverse.

    If there has been one constant in Mr. McCain's legislative record through decades in the House and Senate, it has been his unequivocal support for deregulation. He championed it during his years as chairman of the Senate commerce committee. He campaigned actively and successfully for the very act that scrapped the regulations whose absence created this cascade of bank and insurance-company failures.

    "I have a long voting record in support of deregulation," he said back in 2003. It was no idle boast.

    Mr. McCain's election platform proposes allowing taxpayers to divert part of their social security payments into private investment accounts. It would deregulate the health sector, so that people could shop around for the best available health plan, rather than relying on their employer to provide it.

    "Opening up the health insurance market to more vigorous nationwide competition, as we have done over the last decade in banking, would provide more choices of innovative products less burdened by the worst excesses of state-based regulation," he wrote in a magazine article published last week. Presumably, the piece was submitted before Lehman Brothers went belly up."

  79. She is gobsmacked, ash, by the very insistence that targeted loans under CRA to blacks and Hispanics did this.

  80. you tell her that Ash says the rot is much deeper then simply targeted loans, way way way deeper.

  81. ah, yes, now that I read your line a little closer, I see that meaning. yeppers, your mum sounds bright.

  82. CRA has been used to grease the political skids for bank mergers, but has not benefited those it was intended to benefit. It has worked to the opposite affect.

    What a surprise.

  83. I believe "window dressing" is the term

  84. mat,

    I was wrong about Buffet. There is an interview with him on CNBC's website where he says specifically that he wouldn't have done the Goldman deal if he thought the Paulson deal wouldn't go through.

  85. Even if it is 'constrained' too fuckin' bad.

    Ash, your compassion is showing. Say, does Obama intend to take our home owners exemption from capital gains away?

    Surely, you must know the answer to this.

    Rat, that F-150 analogy, I can understand!

    Teresita, this is just one issue. Please reconsider. Think about the defense of your country. Think about your home owners capital gains exemption.

    I got to say, the testimony by the boys sounds sorta mafia like to me--if you don't give us a trillion, we'll burn your house and business down. Called extortion.

  86. SOURCE: House Republicans met in am: Just 4 members support Paulson plan...

  87. If an individuals has to pay more to borrow money in the market, well, that's a small price to pay. Welcome to the world of business - money isn't free.

    I would seriously doubt that Obama has said he plans on removing a homeowners principal home capital gains exemption. What makes you think that is part of his platform?

    Why do you think McCain wants to postpone his Griday debate with Obama?

  88. I got to say, the testimony by the boys sounds sorta mafia like to me--if you don't give us a trillion, we'll burn your house and business down. Called extortion.

    Wed Sep 24, 03:36:00 PM EDT


    Been there. Done that. Bob.

    No one's rediscovering their scruples.

    Wed Sept 24 2008 14:58:02 ET

    MCCAIN: America this week faces an historic crisis in our financial system. We must pass legislation to address this crisis. If we do not, credit will dry up, with devastating consequences for our economy. People will no longer be able to buy homes and their life savings will be at stake. Businesses will not have enough money to pay their employees. If we do not act, ever corner of our country will be impacted. We cannot allow this to happen.

    Last Friday, I laid out my proposal and I have since discussed my priorities and concerns with the bill the Administration has put forward. Senator Obama has expressed his priorities and concerns.This morning, I met with a group of economic advisers to talk about the proposal on the table and the steps that we should take going forward.I have also spoken with members of Congress to hear their perspective.

    It has become clear that no consensus has developed to support the Administration' proposal. I do not believe that the plan on the table will pass as it currently stands, and we are running out of time.

    Tomorrow morning, I will suspend my campaign and return to Washington after speaking at the Clinton Global Initiative. I have spoken to Senator Obama and informed him of my decision and have asked him to join me.

    I am calling on the President to convene a meeting with the leadership from both houses of Congress, including Senator Obama and myself. It is time for both parties to come together to solve this problem.

    We must meet as Americans, not as Democrats or Republicans, and we must meet until this crisis is resolved.I am directing my campaign to work with the Obama campaign and the commission on presidential debates to delay Friday night's debate until we have taken action to address this crisis.

    I am confident that before the markets open on Monday we can achieve consensus on legislation that will stabilize our financial markets, protect taxpayers and homeowners, and earn the confidence of the American people. All we must do to achieve this is temporarily set politics aside, and I am committed to doing so.

    Following September 11th, our national leaders came together at a time of crisis. We must show that kind of patriotism now. Americans across our country lament the fact that partisan divisions in Washington have prevented us from addressing our national challenges. Now is our chance to come together to prove that Washington is once again capable of leading this country.

  90. Palin says we face an Alaskan winter without a bailout.


    I'm now officially in favor of the bailout.

    You choose your heroine, and follow blindly, in my way of life:) Like the troubadors of old.

    It may not be thoughtfull, or informed, but, it has a certain nobility to it.

  91. Gore Urges Civil Disobedience To Stop Coal Plants

    Putting him alongside Biden I quess.

    This is nothing short of amazing, as it was this dumb motherfucker that stopped the nuclear industry cold. Causing the whole damned problem.

    There must be some cosmic influence acting upon earth in these last days, as everything seems to have gone mad.

  92. I am consistently amazed at your avid pro-nuclear position bobal contrasted with your 'let's nuke Iran if they go nuclear'.

  93. Michelle Malkin

    Lead StoryKill the bailout: Illegal immigration and the mortgage mess

    By Michelle Malkin • September 24, 2008 07:49 AM

    My syndicated column today tackles the bailout angle no one wants to talk about: Open borders and the home loan debacle. You’ve heard a lot about Fannie/Freddie and the minority lending shakedowns, but you haven’t heard most commentators/analysts on either the left or the right talk about the massive illegal alien mortgage racket — a topic I’ve reported on for the past five years. That’s because fault lies at the feet of the crime-enabling banking industry and the ethnic lobbyists and the illegal alien-enabling Bush administration.

    They screwed us. Now, they want us to fork over a trillion dollars.

    Screw them.

    Kill this bailout.

    Michelle doesn't minch words.

  94. Trying to save the planet, Ash.

    What's the deal with Obama wanting to take our home exemption away in the capital gains legislation he wants?

    You must know about this?

    Asking seriously.

  95. If Michelle say X I'm inclined to say NOT X

  96. If Michelle say X I'm inclined to say NOT X

    Which makes you as thoughtless as me, blindly following Palin:)

    You are avoiding my question about Obama and the home owners capital gains exemption.

    The Mother of All Bailouts has many fathers. As panicked politicians prepare to fork over $1 trillion in taxpayer funding to rescue the financial industry, they've fingered regulation, deregulation, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Community Reinvestment Act, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, both Bushes, greedy banks, greedy borrowers, greedy short-sellers and minority home ownership mau-mauers (can't call 'em greedy, that would be racist) for blame.

    But there's one giant paternal elephant in the room that has slipped notice: how illegal immigration, crime-enabling banks and open-borders Bush policies fueled the mortgage crisis.

    It's no coincidence that most of the areas hardest hit by the foreclosure wave -- Loudoun County, Va., California's Inland Empire, Stockton and San Joaquin Valley, and Las Vegas and Phoenix, for starters -- also happen to be some of the nation's largest illegal alien sanctuaries. Half of the mortgages to Hispanics are subprime (the accursed species of loan to borrowers with the shadiest credit histories). A quarter of all those subprime loans are in default and foreclosure.

    Regional reports across the country have decried the subprime meltdown's impact on illegal immigrant "victims." A July report showed that in seven of the 10 metro areas with the highest foreclosure rates, Hispanics represented at least one-third of the population; in two of those areas -- Merced and Salinas-Monterey, Calif. -- Hispanics comprised half the population. The amnesty-promoting National Council of La Raza and its Development Fund have received millions in federal funds to "counsel" their constituents on obtaining mortgages with little to no money down; the group almost succeeded in attaching a $10-million earmark for itself in one of the housing bills past this spring.

  97. I did respond to that query at

    Wed Sep 24, 03:42:00 PM EDT

    I said:

    "I would seriously doubt that Obama has said he plans on removing a homeowners principal home capital gains exemption. What makes you think that is part of his platform?"

  98. Sorry Ash. I missed that.

    What makes me wonder is I read it somewhere, should have bookmarked it. I don't know that's it's true. Every homeowner in America would be opposed. I imagine it would wreck havoc, if more is needed, in the housing market too.

  99. Rat--Wed Sep 24, 08:41:00 AM EDT

    I don't know about 1 and 2, but 3 and 4 I fully support.

    End the tax on the passage of time.

    Third, match our competitors in China and Singapore by going to a zero capital gains tax. Private capital will flood into Wall Street with zero capital gains and it will come at no cost to the taxpayer. Even if you believe in a static analytical model in which lower capital gains taxes mean lower revenues for the Treasury, a zero capital gains tax costs much less than the Paulson plan. And if you believe in a historic model (as I do), a zero capital gains tax would lead to a dramatic increase in federal revenue through a larger, more competitive and more prosperous economy.

    Fourth, immediately pass an “all of the above” energy plan designed to bring home $500 billion of the $700 billion a year we are sending overseas. With that much energy income the American economy would boom and government revenues would grow.

  100. Near as I can figure out, Ash, it may be The Big O is thinking of tinkering with the exemption at the higher upper end, but I don't know.

  101. Democrats have been feeling the pressure on gas prices, abandon their long held position--

    WASHINGTON — Democrats have decided to allow a quarter-century ban on drilling for oil off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts to expire next week, conceding defeat in a months-long battle with the White House and Republicans set off by $4 a gallon gasoline prices this summer.

    House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey, D-Wis., told reporters Tuesday that a provision continuing the moratorium will be dropped this year from a stopgap spending bill to keep the government running after Congress recesses for the election.

    Republicans have made lifting the ban a key campaign issue after gasoline prices spiked this summer and public opinion turned in favor of more drilling. President Bush lifted an executive ban on offshore drilling in July.

    "If true, this capitulation by Democrats following months of Republican pressure is a big victory for Americans struggling with record gasoline prices," said House GOP leader John Boehner of Ohio.

    Democrats had clung to the hope of only a partial repeal of the drilling moratorium, but the White House had promised a veto, Obey said.

  102. After watching (well listening) to the Buffet interview (30 mins.) his take on the problem is that just about everybody is de-leveraging. In order for them to de-leverage they need someone who is willing to leverage and the only player capable of that at this point in time is the US government. If the Paulson plan doesn't pass he thinks last week credit troubles will look like a walk in the park.

    bobal, I suggest that you stick to some semblance of truth (i.e. I read it somewhere doesn't cut it) when positing facts.

  103. I have heard the stories of Mexican nationals refinancing and going back to Mexico.

    Which implies an original loan, then a re-fi. Never really ascertained the details of how it was done.

  104. I was asking you, Ash, what the truth was, going to the font of truth, as I didn't know. Still don't.

    It seems this financial question is helping Obama somewhat in the polls. I think this is highly ironic as if there's ever been a politician that would be pushing this kind of house 'em up stuff at any cost, it's Obama.

  105. Obama Camp: 'The Debate is On'

    ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos and Rick Klein report: Sen. John McCain on Wednesday said he would “suspend” his presidential campaign to come to Washington to help negotiate a financial bailout bill, a dramatic move designed to seize a powerful issue.

    However a senior Obama campaign official said Obama "intends to debate."

    "The debate is on," a senior Obama campaign official told ABC News.

    McCain said he called on the Commission on Presidential Debates to postpone the debate scheduled for Friday in Mississippi, to ensure quick congressional action. The campaign is also suspending its advertising, pending an agreement with Obama.

  106. I agree truth is hard to discern at times but constantly repeating unsubstantiated claims is dishonest.

    for example, Bobal, wht do think about Palin wanting all schools to stop teaching Evolution and only teaching Creationism? Why are you avoiding this question when I keep asking you?

    If you think subsidized mortgages are what is bringing down the financial system and requiring a 700 billion dollar bailout you are quite naive.

  107. McCain is such a turd. If there ever was a time for political debate it is now. He seems to be running scared.

  108. For you bob, and Ms Sarah

    Sexist treatment of Palin must end
    By Campbell Brown

    I call upon the McCain campaign to stop treating Sarah Palin like she is a delicate flower who will wilt at any moment.

    This woman is from Alaska for crying out loud. She is strong, she is tough, she is confident. And you claim she is ready to be one heartbeat away from the presidency. If that is the case, then end this chauvinistic treatment of her now. Allow her to show her stuff.

    Allow her to face down those pesky reporters just like Barack Obama did today, just like John McCain did today. Just like Joe Biden has done on numerous occasions. Let her have a real news conference with real questions.

    By treating Sarah Palin differently from other candidates in this race, you are not showing her the respect she deserves.

    Free Sarah Palin.

    Free her from the chauvinistic chains you are binding her with.

    Sexism in this campaign must come to an end. Sarah Palin has as much a right to be a real candidate in this race as the men do

  109. Bobal, dig this: Rossi is getting sued for having "GOP" follow his name on the ballots, rather than "Republican". The lawsuit was filed AFTER the first ballots went out to the military overseas, and only seeks to change the ballots that will be printed subsequently. If the judge upholds Gregoire's lawsuit, and the election is another nailbiter, watch her argue that the military were sent defective ballots and seek to have them disqualified.

  110. Here, Ash, this should help you out, you can keep it handy.

    I'm a 'believer' in a variant of intelligent design myself.

    Ash evidently thinks things just happened.

    Palin Rumors

    Permalink to this list

    Yes, she is Governor of Alaska. No, she’s not the Lieutenant Governor. No, she’s not currently Mayor of Wasilla. Yes, she was Mayor of Wasilla, some years ago.
    Yes, as Governor of Alaska, she’s the Commander in Chief of the Alaska National Guard. And yes, her professional military subordinate is quite impressed with her in that role.
    And yes, the New York Times says the job of Governor of Alaska is one of the harder, and more powerful, jobs in state government.
    Yes, there are people in Alaska who think she’s too liberal.
    Yes, she did giggle when someone called Lyda Green a “bitch.” Yes, Lyda Green is a cancer survivor. Yes, it was the same Lyda Green who tried to force a scheduling conflict that would make Palin miss her son’s high school graduation. Yes, this would also be the Lyda Green who complained no one had asked her about Palin during the vetting process.
    Yes, she did push for and approve the Wasilla Sports Center. Yes, it did cost a lot of money. (People keep saying $20 million, that article says $14.5 million, but then they also added a $1.2 million dollar food service/kitchen piece. This year, after Palin was out of office as Mayor.) Yes, the city went into debt to do it (how did you buy your house, bunkie?) and raised the city sales tax from 2 percent to 2.5 percent to pay for it. Yes, the city is paying it off early. Yes, there is an ongoing dispute about title (following a struggle with the Nature Conservancy and another buyer. And yes, at the time it was built, Wasilla had a Federal judge’s decision that they had title to the land. Here’s a place to think a little, folks: if Wasilla got a $15 million sports center, and got a mortgage for it, then the city incurred more longterm debt, you bet. It also got a capital asset. You do it with a mortgage; a city does it by setting up bonds and a tax base to service the bonds. Same thing. Whether it was wise or not is another question, but the bonds and tax increase were approved by a special election by the people in Wasilla.
    Yes, she did want authority to have wolves culled from the air, because they were taking too many moose and caribou. Which people hunt for food in the back country in Alaska. No, she isn’t shooting them herself. I mean, not that she couldn’t, but I’m sure she doesn’t have time. (Thanks to bluemerlin in the comments.)

    Look, this is one of those that I’m tempted to categorize under “cripes, what city folks will believe.” You don’t sport hunt from the air; this isn’t some fascination with “blood sports.” This is wildlife management; the authority wasn’t general, it was for only a limited number of wolves, and it was to be done by people with state-issued permits. Here’s how this happens in the wild in a predator-prey model: the predators build up to the point that they cut the population of the prey animals dramatically. They then starve. The prey animals then build up again. Repeat. Only, in this case, the predators who would starve include Alaska’s native (and Native) human population.
    No, the Downs baby (Trig) isn’t Bristol’s kid, and no, the kid wasn’t born with Downs because (a) Palin flew on an airplane (b) went home to have the baby after an amniotic leak (c) because he was the result of incest between Todd Palin and Bristol.
    No, Track (the kid who is leaving for Iraq) didn’t join the NG because he was a drug addict. (It’s worth noting that drug addiction is a medical disqualification for service.) He may have joined the NG because he was tired of people saying his Mom was getting him into the good hockey leagues. (Yes, that one was original reporting. I’ve got sources in Wasilla.) It also wasn’t because he had been caught for some juvenile crimes (see the end of the list.) That “join the army or go to jail” thing doesn’t happen much any more, and in any case he didn’t enlist until two years after the supposed vandalism thing.
    No, Willow and Piper aren’t named for witches on TV. Among other things, Willow was born before Buffy came on TV, and Piper was born before Charmed was a popular girls name in 1994. In any case, try to settle on one theory, okay: she can’t both be a witch and be a crazy AoG fundamentalist, can she?
    Yes, Trig’s name may be misspelled. Isn’t it usually “Tryg” as in “Trygve”? In any case, I doubt he’s named for the Secretary General of the UN (1948-1952), either. But at least that was before he was born, unlike the others.(Thanks to Chris, via his blog.)
    Yes, it appears that she has a Big Dipper tattooed on her ankle. She lost a bet.
    No, she’s never been in any porn as far as anyone can find (and God knows I get enough google hits on those very topics.) I would think the Big Dipper tattoo would be a giveaway.
    No, no one seems to be able to even find swimsuit pictures of her from her beauty queen days; God knows I looked. The bikini pictures that are around are photoshopped, just like the Vogue cover I have up.
    No she wasn’t a member of the (wild-eyed libertarian) Alaska independence Party, although her husband once was
    No, neither the (Canadian) National Post, nor Marc Armbinder at the Atlantic have troubled themselves to issue a correction. Yes, the New York Times did finally correct their story of September 1 — on September 5. And on page 14. This was after Elizabeth Bumiller was quoted by Howard Kurtz as saying she was “completely confident about the story.” Yes, that was after the New York Times’s source retracted the story. Yes, this should embarrass the Times, Bumiller, and Howard Kurtz. No, there have been no signs of embarrassment.
    No, she was never a Pat Buchanan supporter; even when Buchanan claims she was, she was on the board of Steve Forbes’a campaign in Alaska. Yes, Palin was a Steve Forbes supporter in 2000.
    No, she’s not anti-semitic. In fact, she has an Israeli flag in her office. (Contrary to popular belief, the usual Evangelical thinks Israel has a right to exist, granted by God.)
    No, I don’t think she’s being “indoctrinated by Lieberman and AIPAC as we speak”; I don’t get the feeling that being indoctrinated is something that Palin does well.
    Yes, it seems unlikely that she’s going to be in hiding for the next two weeks seeing as she’s been in rallies twice in the last two days. Or at least it’s going to be real rough, given that she has three media interviews scheduled today (6 September) alone. Note: Since then she’s been interviewed on several occasions, and it’s still not quite two weeks.
    Yes, it does appear that Palin’s local pastor preached about an end time when God will judge everyone, even Wasilla, Alaska, and the United States. Duh. This is called the book of Revelation, and while I don’t believe it personally, I don’t see it as a disqualifier for the hundred million or so Baptists, Methodists, Evangelicals, Episcopalians, Catholics, Assembly of God, Presbyterian, Lutherans (traditional and Missouri Synod), African Methodist, and so on Christians in the US.
    Yes, I do sometimes wonder about the state of Andrew’s health. All of this is true, but it screws up the numbering. The next update will introduce a new ordering with a new numbering.
    No, she’s doesn’t believe that the Iraq War was directed by God. Yes, she did pray that proceeding with the war was God’s will: “they should pray ‘that our national leaders are sending them out on a task that is from God, that’s what we have to make sure we are praying for, that there is a plan, and that plan is God’s plan.’” (Ever hear the phrase “Not my will, but Thine, be done”?) Yes, this apparently freaks some people right out. But it’s worth mentioning that Obama has also prayed that he was acting in line with God’s will. Here’s a little hint for the confused here: if someone prays for rain, that doesn’t mean they think it’s already raining.
    It’s a little unclear who Buchanan supports now. At one point, he seemed to be supporting Obama. (Buchanan did think her speech was amazing, but then so do 80 percent of the people who saw it.) Buchanan did say “I stand with Obama” after Obama’s acceptance speech. Buchanan sure doesn’t like McCain though.
    Yes, she was apparently pregnant when she got married
    No, so far there’s no confirmation she had an affair while she was married, and they’ve denied it pretty strongly. No, she wouldn’t be the first Christian woman who got a little on the side, if it were true.
    No, she wasn’t named as a co-respondent in a divorce; there’s no evidence she had an affair with her husbands’ business partner. The partner tried to have his divorce records sealed because he was being harrassed by journalists who used them to get his phone number. The National Enquirer seems to still be pushing this one.
    Yes, barring immaculate conception virgin birth (whatever), Bristol appears to have had sex with her fiancee. No, Bristol didn’t receive only “abstinence-only” sex ed.
    Yes, I have it on reliable report that Sarah Levi’s mom has been heard screaming “Way to go Levi!” at her future son-in-law son. No, it doesn’t appear to have been when Bristol broke the news to her family.
    Note: I originally understood this story to be about Sarah, not Levi’s mom, in the context of hockey games. As such, it’s shouldn’t be in a Sarah Palin Rumors story, but I like the story too much to delete it.
    yes, her 17 year old daughter is pregnant; no, the baby’s father is not an eighth grader; no, having sex at 16 is not statutory rape in Alaska. And no, there’s no way that a 17 year old can be 5 months pregnant as a result of having sex before she was 16. Learn to count for God’s sakes.
    yes, she did fire the public safety guy, Monegan — but he said in the Anchorage paper that, for the record, she never, and no one else in her administration ever, tried to make him fire her ex-brother-in-law.
    and yes, the state trooper (her sister’s ex-husband) she was worried about did: tase her 10 year old nephew; drive his state patrol car while drinking or drunk; did threaten to “bring her down”; and did threaten to murder her father and sister if they dared to get an attorney to help with the divorce.
    yes, the state trooper was suspended when he was put under a court protective order
    no, the trooper wasn’t fired
    yes, she did fire the Wasilla Chief of Police as Mayor; yes, it was because he was lying to the City Council.
    Yes, she did try to cut her own salary as Mayor by $4000 a year; yes, she had voted against the $4000 a year raise while on the City Council. Yes, she did hire a city administrator; she’d tried to get that through while in the City Council, and was apparently part of her platform when she ran for mayor.
    No, she didn’t cut funding for unwed mothers; yes, she did increase it by “only” 354 percent instead of 454 percent, as part of a multi-year capital expenditures program. No, the Washington Post doesn’t appear to have corrected their story. Even after this was pointed out in the comments on the story.
    No, she didn’t cut special needs student funding; yes, she did raise it by “only” 175 percent.
    yes, she did try, clearly unsuccessfully, to get Bristol married off to her fiancee before the story came out
    yes, she did ask the librarian if some books could be withdrawn because of being offensive; no, they couldn’t; yes, it was “rhetorical”, at least as was reported contemporaneously in 1996[1] ; yes she did threaten to fire the librarian a month later; no, that wasn’t over the books thing but instead over administrative issues; no, the librarian wasn’t fired either; yes, the librarian was a big supporter of one of her political opponents; yes, the librarian was also the girlfriend of the Chief of Police mentioned above; no, this is not the first time in the history of civilization that someone has been threatened with being fired over a political dispute
    No the list of books she wanted to ban that’s being passed around isn’t real; among other things, it includes a number of books published after her time in office there.
    No, that hasn’t actually deterred people from claiming it really is true even if the list isn’t correct. For example:
    “This list might not in fact reflect the books Sarah Palin wanted banned. As more than one person in Comments has pointed out, some of them were not published when Palin was in office. It is my hope that the mainstream media will not let this story drop and that at some point an actual list will surface. The very thought of having someone who once advocated book-banning possibly occupying one of the highest offices of our land fills me with profound dread. It should fill you with dread too.”
    No, I don’t understand why a fake list is supposed to fill me with dread, either.
    no, it wasn’t won’t be [bad tense, hasn't happened yet] a shotgun wedding; Bristol and Levi been engaged for a good while according to Levi’s mother. It was either an accident or just an unconventional order.
    yes, she’s an was an Assembly of God Holy Roller. No, she doesn’t attend an AoG church now. Yes, she did leave the AoG because they were getting too weird for her.
    No, she’s not anti-Mormon. No, not all AoG churches are anti-Mormon. (AoG is even more hard-core about allowing each pastor and congregation to make their own decisions than the Baptists are.) (Thanks to AnonAmom in the comments.)
    No, she’s not from another planet. No, I haven’t actually heard that one yet, but you wait. Okay, I have now heard it.
    yes, she apparently believes in some variant of Intelligent Design.
    Note: This started an argument with my best friend, who is a Biology professor and rather more of an atheist than I manage to be. He thinks this is code for “Creationist”. But let’s look at what Palin actually said:

    In an interview Thursday, Palin said she meant only to say that discussion of alternative views should be allowed to arise in Alaska classrooms: “I don’t think there should be a prohibition against debate if it comes up in class. It doesn’t have to be part of the curriculum.” She added that, if elected, she would not push the state Board of Education to add such creation-based alternatives to the state’s required curriculum.
    An AP article also makes it clear that Palin hasn’t pushed the idea in Alaska schools. Here’s the point, one which the AP seems to have missed themselves. (Another rant for later is on the state of science education among journalists.) “Creationist” generally has a lot stronger meaning than simply believing in a Creator. It’s usually used for people who reject the notion of evolution at all. Palin’s strongest statement on this has been “I don’t pretend to know how all this came to be.” But pretty much anyone who believes in a Deity will end up with some kind of “intelligent design”; even a complete Cosmic Clockmaker Deist thinks of a Designer, a Grand Architect of the Universe. Both Obama and Biden are professing Christians, who believe in a personal Deity, a Creator. So what’s the difference? Only what people have made up about what they think Palin must believe.

    no, she didn’t try to force the schools to teach it; she said if someone brought it up, it was an appropriate subject for debate. She did, however, say it shouldn’t be part of the curriculum.

    No, she doesn’t believe in “abstinence only” education. Yes, she thinks abstinence is an effective way of preventing pregnancy. Duh. Yes, she believes kids should learn about condom use in schools.
    Yes, she did smoke marijuana, when it was legal in Alaska. Yes, she apparently did inhale.
    yes, she kills animals and eats them, and wears their skins
    yes, she was a beauty contest contestant
    yes, she was once a sportscaster
    yes, she has a college degree in Journalism, but I won’t hold that against her, as she seems to have found honest work as well
    yes, she sometimes wears her hair up; no that’s not a “beehive”
    yes, her husband is Not A White Person (he’s a Yup’ik; an Eskimo but not an Inuit as my Inuit cousins have taken some pains to explain)
    yes, she has on occasion, as Mayor, tried to get money from the federal government.
    yes, she did finally turn down the money for the bridge. Yes, that meant changing her mind about it.
    yes, she was vetted extensively, not just in three days — I’ve got links to press reports about people coming to Wassila on 29 May, and we had her on our Veepstakes at PJM from the first day we ran it.
    yes, she want to a bunch of colleges before getting a degree. No, that’s not illegal. Yes, she seems to have made something of herself anyway.
    no, they didn’t talk to a lot of the R’s power structure during the vetting; that probably has to do with the fact that she beat them in elections and sent a bunch of them to jail caused a couple of them to leave the government, admit wrongdoing and pay fines. (Corrected because they didn’t apparently actually go to jail. Thanks to Frank for the correction.)
    Yes, Sarah Palin’s acceptance speech was written by a speechwriter. Duh. No, none of Obama’s, McCain’s, nor Biden’s speeches were impromptu off the cuff things either.
    Yes, she did put the Governors plane on eBay. No, that’s not how it was finally sold. Yes, McCain did say it wrong. Bad McCain.
    No, Sarah Palin doesn’t have such control of Alaskans that people are afraid to say bad things about her. (What, are you nuts? Look at this list.) No, I don’t think it’s likely that she called Obama “Sambo”. (Good God, man, I’m ten years older than she and I barely remember “Little Black Sambo.”) Yes, it seems unlikely to me that she’s be real racist and marry a Yup’ik (or a part Yup’ik.) But yes, people are capable of amazing things. Yes, I’m sure there are people who don’t like her — I’ve talked with some myself. And no, I don’t think this waitress would have been thrilled to be called an “aboriginal”. And yes, if she called Hillary a “bitch”, I’m pretty confident is wasn’t the first time anyone in politics has said that.
    No, she’s not a “global warming denier”, and when the crush dies down remind me to explain why the very phrasing “global warming denier” is anti-scientific, anti-intellectual, and a clear sign of a desire to impose your beliefs by coercion. But in the mean time, while I do believe that she has expressed some skepticism that warming is wholly human-caused, the existence of the Alaska Climate Change Sub-Cabinet and the Alaska Climate Change Strategy work demonstrate that she’s considering the problem and has brought together people more expert than she to advise her.
    Yes, Todd Palin did have a DUI. Twenty-two years ago. Get a grip.
    No, Sarah Palin’s brother isn’t in jail. Yes, there was a rumor that her brother was in jail. (If he were, it would seem she was in good company with a brother in trouble, see, eg, Billy Carter and Roger Clinton.) But in fact no one seems to have a source for this except for comments posted places like CNN; many of those comments have now disappeared. (Thanks to Galynn in comments.)
    Yes, Sarah Palin’s pastor apparently does believe that gays can “repent” and be cured of homosexuality. No, believe it or not, even fundamentalist Christians don’t have to believe every litle thing their pastor believes. Yes, Palin seems to be more libertarian about this. In any case, according to the interview with Greta van Susteren, this isn’t something he emphasizes.
    Yes, contrary to press reports, Sarah Palin’s mother-in-law plans to vote for her and the R ticket (when interviewed on Inside Edition.)
    No, the fact that some 17 year old was arrested for malicious mischief at the right time doesn’t mean Track Palin was. One of the actual perpetrators was interviewed by the New York Daily News, and he says unequivocally that Track wasn’t involved. The National Enquirer says “unnamed judicial sources” say otherwise. You pick which you believe.
    No, she didn’t try to charge rape victims personally for rape kits. This is one of those complicated ones with a tiny hint of truth behind it. First, the Chief of Police in Wasilla (not Palin) did apparently have a policy of asking a victim’s health insurance to pay for the rape kit as part of the ER visit. This, it turns out, is policy in a number of states, including Missouri and North Carolina. Second, the way this became an issue was after the then-governor of Alaska signed a bill forbidding it; this law was signed before Palin was Governor and no one tried to reverse it while she was Governor. Third, what the CoP in Wasilla wanted to do was charge the perpetrator as part of restitution.
    Yes, she did say that she figured if “under God” was good enough for the Founding Fathers, it was good enough for her. No, in context I don’t think that means she thinks the Founding Fathers wrote the Pledge of Allegiance.
    No, she didn’t violate operational security when she mentioned her son was to be mobilized for iraq on 11 September. That was an announced, public departure ceremony. The way this works is you’re mobilized, then go to a US base for conditioning and final training,and then actually go overseas.
    Yes, she is apparently against an expansion of casino gambling in Alaska. No, she hasn’t tried to make home gambling illegal.
    No, Palin didn’t institute a “windfall profits” tax on the oil companies. She modified the existing severance tax, which works more or less like a sales tax on resources taken out of the ground. (A windfall profit tax, of course, is based on profits.) Just by the way, how is it she’s both “in the pocket of the oil companies” and supposedly instituting a windfall profits tax anyway?
    Yes, Todd Palin works for BP Oil. There is a rumor around that he was some kid of executive; it’s not true. He was originally a plant supervisor, and after the concern about conflict of interest, voluntarily was reduced to be a night shift plant operator, a regular technician job. In any case, he took leave from BP when Sarah became Governor, since she would be negotiating with BP, in order to remove the potential conflict of interests.
    No, British Petroleum/BP wasn’t the sole sponsor of her inaugural. It was among 20-odd sponsors. In any case, they certainly didn’t get their money’s worth if they were trying to use the inaugural to buy influence; Palin’s renegotiation of the severance tax cost them a pile of money.
    No, Palin didn’t eliminate or “void” the Alaskan WIC program as Newsweek claimed. Warren Throckmorton explored this in detail; the truth is that the WIC funding increased during Palin’s time in office; what was cut was a $15,840 separate line request for office supplies and literature. Based on his work, Newsweek was forced to issue a clarification.
    No, Trig isn’t an alien either.
    No, Sarah Palin doesn’t think that dinosaurs walked the earth with Adam and Eve 4000 years ago, In fact, this was a purposeful satire that comes from a post actually entitled Fake Governor Palin Quotes. This has, however, kept neither Matt Damon nor Maureen Dowd from propagating them as fact.
    No, Palin never said she and Todd would kill as many as 40 caribou at a time. That was from the same damn collection of fake quotes. No does it make any sense: can you imagine field-dressing 40 caribou?
    No, she did not cut the Special Olympics funding in a recent budget, except in the Washington sense of “didn’t increase it as much as someone wanted.” Warren Throckmorton shows is was actually a 10 percent increase over the previous year; voxitar in the comments gives a link to the previous year’s budget of $250,000.
    These have gotten sort of silly, though: she has a line-item veto power, and every last one of the cuts she made can be spun, by a political opponent, to say that she is hurting something that sounds good. She cut a new fire station building; she must be against fire departments. She cut an audio system for a grade school; she must be against education.
    But then, if she cut nothing she wouldn’t be a fiscal conservative, would she?
    Yes, she did bill the Alaska State Government for per diem on days when she was “home.” This is how it works: she is maintaining two households. The state law defines her official residence in Juneau as “home”, so when she’s up in Wasilla, she’s “traveling”. That’s the way the law is written, and it appears that she has documented and handled her expenses legally and appropriately, even if it seems odd. And yes, her expenses have been anywhere from a third to a fifth of the expenses of the previous Governor. The Washington Post suggests this calls into question her claim to be a fiscal conservative; personally, I think cutting expenses by 70 to 80 percent seems like a pretty good claim to the title.
    Anyone who sees a new rumor, leave it in a comment.

    and thanks to Cecil Turner@ Just One Minute for this [↩]
    Posted by Charlie on Saturday, September 6th, 2008, at 07:52

  111. Obama supporter and chief debate negotiator Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., told MSNBC that "we can handle both," when asked about his reaction to McCain's call to postpone the first debate because of the administration's bailout plan.

    He believes they are making good progress on Capitol Hill on the bailout and his initial reaction is that the work on the Hill should not preclude the debate from taking place.

    An Obama campaign official told ABC News the Democratic presidential candidate called McCain this morning to suggest a joint statement of principles.

    McCain called back this afternoon and suggested returning to Washington.

    Obama is willing to return to Washington "if it would be helpful." But reiterated Obama intends to debate on Friday.

  112. hhmmm, that is not surprising, Teresita. Gregoire is running scared.

    I don't know anything about Rossi. He may be a shit for all I know, but I do think he got screwed out of the last election.

    There's going to be some massive vote fraud this election. Particularily in Ohio, with the new laws. One does get the feeling society is breaking down.

  113. you want facts on Palin do you Bobal?

    Here's a nice description of recent developments in troopergate. Lot's of detail at the link:

    "As America now knows, Troopergate is the local Alaska name for the investigation that the Alaska Legislature (by a unanimous vote of both Republicans and Democrats) directed the Judiciary Committee of the Alaska Senate to initiate to find out whether Sarah and the Palinistas who work for her in the Governor’s Office tried (unsuccessfully as it turned out) to pressure Walt Monegan, the Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Public Safety, to violate civil service laws and the State’s contract with the State Troopers’ union by firing Trooper Mike Wooten, Sarah’s ex-brother-in-law. Alaska Governor Palin welcomed the Troopergate investigation. Republican Vice Presidential Candidate Palin now wants nothing to do with it. "

  114. North to Alaska: It turns out that well before he was jettisoned for what he says was his refusal to fire trooper Wooten at the behest of Sarah Palin, Monegan had his own share of domestic troubles - some of them spilling all the way down to the Bay Area.

    In October 1994, Monegan's estranged wife, who had moved from Alaska to the Peninsula with the couple's two daughters after more than 10 years of marriage, sought a temporary restraining order against him - accusing Monegan of threatening to kill her, waving a gun at her and dislocating her shoulder, according to her declaration on file in Santa Clara County Superior Court.

    In an interview last week, Georgene Moldovan said Monegan had threatened several times to throw her body in an Alaska river.

    Monegan, 57, who has since remarried, vigorously denied Moldovan's allegations, both in court papers filed at the time and in an interview with us last week. "I'm not a door slammer - I don't punch walls," he said.

    Monegan admitted to dislocating Moldovan's shoulder, but said it was an accident that had happened before they were married, while they "were wrestling and tickling."

    Moldovan was an emergency room doctor and professor at Stanford and shuttled back and forth from Alaska to the Peninsula the last seven years of their marriage. Monegan asked her for a divorce in 1993, but snapped when he learned he might lose the couple's house, she says.

    One day in April 1993, she said in her court filing, "he pulled out his gun and waved it at me outside my home and yelled he would kill me if I stopped him."

    In the interview, Moldovan said Monegan "would show up unannounced and break into my apartment and do threatening things. I was forced to get a restraining order because I was really fearful he was going to harm me."

    Monegan denounced the allegations as "either half-truths or pure fabrications." He points out that Moldovan made her accusations in the midst of a bitter fight over who would get the couple's daughters.

    If any of the allegations had been documented, he said, he would have been fired from his Anchorage police job and never been hired by Palin as Alaska's top cop in 2006.

    As for whether any of his own troubles might have clouded his judgment in dealing with Palin's ex-brother-in-law amid his messy divorce, Monegan says no.

    "In a nutshell, I never have and I never will condone domestic violence," he said.

    And while Monegan hasn't spoken to his ex-wife in years, he says, he is still on very good terms with her first husband - Alaska's U.S. attorney, Nelson Cohen.
    San Francisco Examnier

  115. Hey Bob

    I guess that makes you and I Palinistas

  116. ah, Ash, give it up. Look more closely at your man Obama, he's running for President.

    With less 'experience' as has been widely pointed out, than Palin.

  117. That's what we are Gag, and I'm going to Wal-Mart now, with my wife, so I leave Ash to you.

  118. Go to the next post and compare McCain dealings with Fannie Mae and Obama and the Congressional Black Caucus. Why is McCain taking down his ads and letting Obama eat his lunch?

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