Secret Bailouts Helped Biggest Banks Get Bigger
Excerpts from Bloomberg.com: "The Federal Reserve and the big banks fought for more than two years to keep details of the largest bailout in U.S. history a secret. Now, the rest of the world can see what it was missing.
The Fed didn’t tell anyone which banks were in trouble so deep they required a combined $1.2 trillion on Dec. 5, 2008, their single neediest day. Bankers didn’t mention that they took tens of billions of dollars in emergency loans at the same time they were assuring investors their firms were healthy. And no one calculated until now that banks reaped an estimated $13 billion of income by taking advantage of the Fed’s below-market rates, Bloomberg Markets magazine reports in its January issue.
Saved by the bailout, bankers lobbied against government regulations, a job made easier by the Fed, which never disclosed the details of the rescue to lawmakers even as Congress doled out more money and debated new rules aimed at preventing the next collapse.
A fresh narrative of the financial crisis of 2007 to 2009 emerges from 29,000 pages of Fed documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act and central bank records of more than 21,000 transactions. While Fed officials say that almost all of the loans were repaid and there have been no losses, details suggest taxpayers paid a price beyond dollars as the secret funding helped preserve a broken status quo and enabled the biggest banks to grow even bigger...." *********
Yesterday was a very sad day for the future of America. The Senate passed the National Defense Authorization Act. Drafted in secret, and passed in a hurry, the bill destroys important Constitutional rights and protections for United States citizens.
Citizens living peacefully in the United States can now be imprisoned indefinitely without a trial if they are merely suspected of being a terrorist.
We must teach our children Constitutional principles and the rights that free people should have so they can restore them when it's their turn to lead.
From the Drudge Report: "The Senate is going to vote on whether Congress will give this president -- and every future president -- the power to order the military to pick up and imprison without charge or trial civilians anywhere in the world. . . .
"The power is so broad that even U.S. citizens could be swept up by the military and the military could be used far from any battlefield, even within the United States itself.
"The worldwide indefinite detention without charge or trial provision is in S. 1867, the National Defense Authorization Act bill . . . . The bill was drafted in secret by Sens. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) and passed in a closed-door committee meeting, without even a single hearing."
This alarming, arbitrary bill will strip United States citizens of their Constitutional rights. It strikes at the very core of our liberty. And it is being considered now.
Please watch Senator Paul's effective overview of this extremely dangerous bill. Make sure your elected representatives know how you feel. And please press "like" to spread the word.
President Obama says he understands the frustrations expressed by Occupy Wall Street demonstrators and compares them to the Tea Party.
What do you think?
Are Occupy Wall Street demonstrations like the Tea Party protests? Or is this another Obama tall tale?
"If You Had to Defend Obamacare,
Wouldn't You Want a Teleprompter?”
Need a good laugh?
Watch Newt Gingrich set the stage for potential Gingrich / Obama debates.
As a scholar and teacher of American history, Newt always has plenty to say.
Let's see if the Constitutional Law professor from Harvard can keep up with a West Georgia College professor.
The internet is a modern-day miracle of communication, education, business, and economic development in America.
It has transformed our lives in many wonderful ways.
But now, the government is seeking broad new regulatory powers that will have a crippling effect on the internet as we know it.
This currently proposed legislation called the "Stop Online Piracy Act" in the House and the "Protect Intellectual Property Act" in the Senate is aimed at stopping piracy on the internet.
But far from stopping illegal activity, it opens the door for censorship and abuse while making the internet less safe and less reliable.
In the words of today's Wall Street Journal
"These bills would go so far to protect copyright that they would strangle the Internet with regulation. The Web would be transformed from a permissive technology where innovation is welcome to one where websites are shut down first, questions asked later.
"The legislation has bipartisan support and could come up for a vote before the end of the year. If it passes, the government will take down an entire website when a copyright holder claims an infringement online. A violation could be a single link on a single page, such as user-generated content that includes a movie clip or song lyric.
"It would also be unlawful for a site to 'avoid confirming a high probability' of infringement. This is legalese to make websites responsible for anything posted on them or potentially posted on them by third parties. Payment providers, ad networks and search engines would get infringement notices barring them from working with these sites, which would put the sites out of business before any violation is proven.
"Silicon Valley has belatedly realized it must fight the new proposals. Fred Wilson, a New York venture capitalist, recently hit the corridors in Washington and wrote on his blog: 'Venture capitalists will think more than twice about putting $3 million of early-stage capital into startups if they know that the vast majority of the funds will go to pay lawyers to defend the companies instead of to hire engineers to create and build product.'
"'Facebook, Twitter and YouTube were three-person startups not so long ago,' Mr. Wilson wrote. Each 'could have been litigated out of business before they had a chance to grow,' because all have inadvertently permitted violations of copyright by users.
"The proposed changes to the law would effectively repeal the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. This created a safe harbor in 1998 for online providers so long as they agreed to cut off users who violate copyright. Rights holders use a 'notice and take down' process. Sites such as Facebook and YouTube comply with more than 10,000 such takedown notices a year, but they are not directly liable for infringements any more than phone companies are liable when people speak on the phone to plan a crime. This has allowed the Web to grow while providing copyright protection."
Please watch the video and click LIKE to help spread the word.
We must act quickly to prevent this destructive legislation from being passed!
This heart-warming classic reminds us that each person is important and irreplaceable -- especially when things appear bleak. Hope you enjoy it!
Wishing You a Wonderful Thanksgiving!
Thanksgiving is a such a warm, wonderful holiday. Family and friends join together to give thanks, to partake of a delicious meal, and to enjoy each other’s company -- just as the Pilgrims and native Americans did so many years ago.
I have heard stories of the first Thanksgiving since I was a toddler, but this year, more than ever before, I realized what incredible faith and commitment the Pilgrims had. They, like our Founding Fathers, truly committed their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to obeying the will of God.
They left their family and friends, their native land, their comfort and security, and more than half gave their lives - all to worship God in the way they believed He wanted.
And they did it with great faith, even when everything went wrong.
They did it with great love for God, even when He didn’t deliver them from indescribable suffering and hardships.
They did it with great courage, even when the obstacles appeared insurmountable.
And they did it with gratitude in their hearts, even when their daily food ration was just five kernels of corn.
So, as we enjoy a great feast with friends and loved ones, let’s take time to give thanks to God, to retell the story of the Pilgrims and the incredible price they paid, and to recommit ourselves to pay the price to be true in our day.
A few other ideas:
* Read Abraham Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation
that set aside the first “official” Thanksgiving holiday.
* Listen to Ronald Reagan’s 1 1/2 minute Thanksgiving message
* Talk about Squanto, the wonderful friend of the Pilgrims
, who overcame great trials in his life and used the resulting strengths and talents he developed to reach out and help the Pilgrims.
* Tell about the hardships the Pilgrims went through and the significance of five kernels of corn
* A nice Thanksgiving dinner is a lot of work. Help the hostess and let her know how much you appreciate her!
“Good morning, everyone.
You know, the Statue of Liberty and this wonderful holiday called Thanksgiving go together naturally because although as Americans we have many things for which to be thankful, none is more important than our liberty.
Liberty: that quality of government, that brightness of mind and spirit for which the Pilgrim Fathers braved the seas and Americans for two centuries have laid down their lives.
Today, while religion is suppressed in perhaps one third of the world, we Americans are free to worship the Almighty as we choose.
While entire nations must endure the yoke of tyranny, we are free to speak our minds, to enjoy an unfettered and vigorous press, and to make government abide by the limits we deem just. While millions live behind walls, we remain free to travel throughout the land to share this precious day with those we love most deeply – the members of our families.
My fellow Americans, let us keep this Thanksgiving Day sacred. Let us thank God for the bounty and goodness of our nation. And as a measure of our gratitude, let us rededicate ourselves to the preservation of this: the land of the free and the home of the brave.
From the Reagan family to your family: Happy Thanksgiving and God bless you all.”
Abraham Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation
The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies.
To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God.
In the midst of a civil war of unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union.
Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consiousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.
No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People.
I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.
And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.
In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done at the City of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the Unites States the Eighty-eighth.
By the President: Abraham Lincoln
William H. Seward,
Secretary of State