Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Obama's first 100 days littered with broken promises

Alex Conant is a communications consultant who served as the Republican National Committee's national press secretary in 2008

Given all the hoopla and high expectations surrounding the new president, it's easy to overlook how he has shifted since the election in both tone and substance.

As we approach the 100-day mark of his presidency, Barack Obama has broken or bent many tenets of his campaign, including promises on war, spending and good government.

In terms of tone, Obama promised to be a hope-filled change agent who could fix our politics and "heal a nation." He would do it by refusing to appoint lobbyists to his administration, increasing transparency in government, and forging new bipartisan consensus. His campaign promised to strengthen government checks and balances by limiting the use of presidential signing statements, mandating public review of legislation, and vetoing wasteful congressional earmarks. Yet none of those promises survived his first 100 days.

Even before he was sworn in, Obama picked several lobbyists for top administration jobs, including major cabinet deputy secretaries. When challenged to explain and produce the waivers that permitted those nominations, the administration dragged its feet, bending only after embarrassing questions from the White House press corps.

The promise-breaking did not stop with the inauguration. Soon after he was sworn in, the president signed an earmark-laden spending bill with virtually no bipartisan support or public review - and then promptly issued a signing statement.

The speed and ease with which Obama broke his promises for a new politics are only eclipsed by his policy shifts since taking office. But whereas his good-government reversals have consistently trended toward politics-as-usual, his policy reversals go both ways.

Some shifts are decidedly conservative, like his new Iraq policy, which looks strikingly similar to the one he inherited from President George W. Bush. Gone is Obama's promise to remove all combat troops from Iraq within 16 months of taking office. Instead, Obama is embracing a conditions-based withdrawal that would leave up to 50,000 troops in Iraq until the end of 2011.

Similarly, Obama is showing a greater openness to free trade than he ever did on the campaign trail. Campaigning in Pennsylvania a year ago, Obama promised to renegotiate NAFTA if elected president, and opposed new free-trade agreements with Colombia and South Korea. But now, the Administration says Obama has no plans to reopen NAFTA and is pushing Congress to ratify the trade agreements.

That's not to say that Obama is proving to be a conservative. Most of Obama's policy shifts since winning the election are decidedly liberal, especially on issues of taxes, spending and borrowing.

During the campaign, Obama portrayed himself as a fiscal hawk, promising to cut taxes for most taxpayers while simultaneously putting our nation on a path toward fiscal responsibility with "a net spending cut." That would require making hard budgeting choices - which Obama has yet to do. Instead, Obama's budget would double the national debt over the next five years and triple it in 10. Similarly, his signature middle-class tax cuts expire in just two years, while his promises to cut taxes for small businesses are postponed until after his term in office.

Given the gravity of our nation's challenges, Obama can be forgiven for occasionally prioritizing pragmatism over political pledges. But the speed and scope of his promise-breaking in the first 100 days should not be ignored amid the general excitement surrounding the new president.

Look beneath the soaring rhetoric and it is clear Obama's presidency is off to a rocky start. He has consistently capitulated on the substantive issues that brought him into the office, eroding his credibility with many observers and making him appear more like a typical politician.

Hopefully, his new positions will lead us toward a more peaceful and prosperous future. But if victory is elusive overseas and recovery is slow at home, voters will become more skeptical of his future promises.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Happiness is a habit

“Happiness is a habit - cultivate it.” ~ Elbert Hubbard

Happiness is one aspiration all people share. No one wants to be sad and depressed.

We’ve all seen people who are always happy – even amidst agonizing life trials. I’m not saying happy people don’t feel grief, sorrow or sadness; they just don’t let it overtake their life. The following are 21 things happy people make a habit of doing:

1. Appreciate Life

Be thankful that you woke up alive each morning. Develop a childlike sense of wonder towards life. Focus on the beauty of every living thing. Make the most of each day. Don’t take anything for granted. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

2. Choose Friends Wisely

Surround yourself with happy, positive people who share your values and goals. Friends that have the same ethics as you will encourage you to achieve your dreams. They help you to feel good about yourself. They are there to lend a helping hand when needed.

3. Be Considerate

Accept others for who they are as well as where they are in life. Respect them for who they are. Touch them with a kind and generous spirit. Help when you are able, without trying to change the other person. Try to brighten the day of everyone you come into contact with.

4. Learn Continuously

Keep up to date with the latest news regarding your career and hobbies. Try new and daring things that has sparked your interest – such as dancing, skiing, surfing or sky-diving.

5. Creative Problem Solving

Don’t wallow in self-pity. As soon as you face a challenge get busy finding a solution. Don’t let the set backs affect your mood, instead see each new obstacle you face as an opportunity to make a positive change. Learn to trust your gut instincts – it’s almost always right.

6. Do What They Love

Some statistics show that 80% of people dislike their jobs! No wonder there’s so many unhappy people running around. We spend a great deal of our life working. Choose a career that you enjoy – the extra money of a job you detest isn’t worth it. Make time to enjoy your hobbies and pursue special interests.

7. Enjoy Life

Take the time to see the beauty around you. There’s more to life than work. Take time to smell the roses, watch a sunset or sunrise with a loved one, take a walk along the seashore, hike in the woods etc. Learn to live in the present moment and cherish it. Don’t live in the past or the future.

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8. Laugh

Don’t take yourself – or life to seriously. You can find humor in just about any situation. Laugh at yourself – no one’s perfect. When appropriate laugh and make light of the circumstances. (Naturally there are times that you should be serious as it would be improper to laugh.)

9. Forgive

Holding a grudge will hurt no one but you. Forgive others for your own peace of mind. When you make a mistake – own up to it – learn from it – and FORGIVE yourself.

10. Gratitude

Develop an attitude of gratitude. Count your blessings; All of them – even the things that seem trivial. Be grateful for your home, your work and most importantly your family and friends. Take the time to tell them that you are happy they are in your life.

11. Invest in Relationships

Always make sure your loved ones know you love them even in times of conflict. Nurture and grow your relationships with your family and friends by making the time to spend with them. Don’t break your promises to them. Be supportive.

12. Keep Their Word

Honesty is the best policy. Every action and decision you make should be based on honesty. Be honest with yourself and with your loved ones.

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13. Meditate

Meditation gives your very active brain a rest. When it’s rested you will have more energy and function at a higher level. Types of meditation include yoga, hypnosis, relaxation tapes, affirmations, visualization or just sitting in complete silence. Find something you enjoy and make the time to practice daily.

14. Mind Their Own Business

Concentrate on creating your life the way you want it. Take care of you and your family. Don’t get overly concerned with what other people are doing or saying. Don’t get caught up with gossip or name calling. Don’t judge. Everyone has a right to live their own life the way they want to – including you.

15. Optimism

See the glass as half full. Find the positive side of any given situation. It’s there – even though it may be hard to find. Know that everything happens for a reason, even though you may never know what the reason is. Steer clear of negative thoughts. If a negative thought creeps in – replace it with a positive thought.

16. Love Unconditionally

Accept others for who they are. You don’t put limitations on your love. Even though you may not always like the actions of your loved ones – you continue to love them.

17. Persistence

Never give up. Face each new challenge with the attitude that it will bring you one step closer to your goal. You will never fail, as long as you never give up. Focus on what you want, learn the required skills, make a plan to succeed and take action. We are always happiest while pursuing something of value to us.

18. Be Proactive

Accept what can not be changed. Happy people don’t waste energy on circumstances beyond their control. Accept your limitations as a human being. Determine how you can take control by creating the outcome you desire – rather than waiting to respond.

19. Self Care

Take care of your mind, body and health. Get regular medical check ups. Eat healthy and work out. Get plenty of rest. Drink lots of water. Exercise your mind by continually energizing it with interesting and exciting challenges.

20. Self Confidence

Don’t try to be someone that you’re not. After all no one likes a phony. Determine who you are in the inside – your own personal likes and dislikes. Be confident in who you are. Do the best you can and don’t second guess yourself.

21. Take Responsibility

Happy people know and understand that they are 100% responsible for their life. They take responsibility for their moods, attitude, thoughts, feelings, actions and words. They are the first to admit when they’ve made a mistake.

Begin today by taking responsibility for your happiness. Work on developing these habits as you own. The more you incorporate the above habits into your daily lifestyle – the happier you will be.

Nationalizing the banks. What's next?

Obama’s leap to socialism
By Dick Morris
Posted: 04/21/09 05:21 PM [ET]
President Obama showed his hand this week when The New York Times wrote that he is considering converting the stock the government owns in our country’s banks from preferred stock, which it now holds, to common stock.

This seemingly insignificant change is momentous. It means that the federal government will control all of the major banks and financial institutions in the nation. It means socialism.

The Times dutifully dressed up the Obama plan as a way to avoid asking Congress for more money for failing banks. But the implications of the proposal are obvious to anyone who cares to look.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The real hostage story you'll never hear on TV

Obama And The Real
Pirates/Hostage Story?
From Various Sources
4-20-9


The Real Story Of Obama's 'Decision-Making' With The Pirates And Hostage

Having spoken to some SEAL pals here in Virginia Beach yesterday and asking why this thing dragged out for 4 days, I got the following:

1. Barack Hussein Obama (BHO) wouldn't authorize the DEVGRU/NSWC SEAL teams to the scene for 36 hours going against OSC (on scene commander) recommendation.

2. Once they arrived, BHO imposed restrictions on their ROE that they couldn't do anything unless the hostage's life was in "imminent" danger

3. The first time the hostage jumped into the sea, the SEALS had the raggies all sighted in, but could not fire due to ROE restriction

4. When the navy RIB came under fire as it approached with supplies, no fire was returned due to ROE restrictions. As the raggies were shooting at the RIB, they were exposed and the SEALS had them all dialed in.

5. BHO specifically denied two rescue plans developed by the Bainbridge CPN and SEAL teams.

6. Bainbridge CPN and SEAL team CDR finally decide they have the OpArea and OSC authority to solely determine risk to hostage. 4 hours later, 3 dead raggies.

7. BHO immediately claims credit for his "daring and decisive" behaviour. As usual with him, it's BS.

Read the following accurate account.

Philips' first leap into the warm, dark water of the Indian Ocean hadn't worked out as well. With the Bainbridge in range and a rescue by his country's Navy possible, Philips threw himself off of his lifeboat prison, enabling Navy shooters onboard the destroyer a clear shot at his captors and none was taken.

The guidance from National Command Authority, the president of the United States , Barack Obama had been clear: a peaceful solution was the only acceptable outcome to this standoff unless the hostage's life was in clear, extreme danger.

The next day, a small Navy boat approaching the floating raft was fired on by the Somali pirates and again no fire was returned and no pirates killed. This was again due to the cautious stance assumed by Navy personnel, thanks to the combination of a lack of clear guidance from Washington and a mandate from the commander in chief's staff not to act until Obama, a man with no background of dealing with such issues and no track record of decisiveness, decided that any outcome other than a peaceful solution would be acceptable.

After taking fire from the Somali kidnappers again Saturday night, the onscenecommander decided he'd had enough.

Keeping his authority to act in the case of a clear and present danger to the hostage's life, and having heard nothing from Washington since yet another request to mount a rescue operation had been denied the day before, the Navy officer, unnamed in all media reports to date, decided the AK47 one captor had leveled at Philips' back was a threat to the hostage's life and ordered the NSWC team to take their shots.

Three rounds downrange later, all three brigands became enemy KIA and Philips was safe.

There is upside, downside, and spinside to the series of events over the last week that culminated in yesterday's dramatic rescue of an American hostage.

Almost immediately following word of the rescue, the Obama administration and its supporters claimed victory against pirates in the Indian Ocean and [1] declared that the dramatic end to the standoff put paid to questions of the inexperienced president's toughness and decisiveness.

Despite the Obama administration's (and its sycophants') attempt to spin yesterday's success as a result of bold, decisive leadership by the inexperienced president, the reality is nothing of the sort. What should have been a standoff lasting only hours, as long as it took the USS Bainbridge and its team of NSWC operators to steam to the location, became an embarrassing four day and counting standoff between a ragtag handful of criminals with rifles and a U.S. Navy warship.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

We’re All Ragheads Now

by John Galt

April 14, 2009

The Washington Times ran this story today titled “Federal Agency Warns of Radicals on the Right” which was presented by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on Right Wing Extremism. To say the contents were disturbing is an understatement. This one sentence from page 5:

”Antigovernment conspiracy theories and “end times” prophecies could motivate extremist individuals and groups to stockpile food, ammunition and weapons.”

While the sentence in and of itself is perfectly logical from a mainstream media or average person’s perspective, when taken in context of the entire paper, it tells the world that everyone or anyone who might be a gun owner just looking to protect his family, a plinker or God forbid, someone who stocks food up for emergencies like a hurricane or earthquake could be equated to “anti-government conspiracy theories and end time prophecies” or worse: Those evil militias that have taken over our nation 399 times in the last 200 years. It is a sad statement to the level of paranoia that the far left extremists running our nation exhibit about the far right extremist paranoia which has never held power, never attempted to hold power and only usually comments to the “out there” ideals instead of what used to be the mainstream. You remember the ‘old’ mainstream, right gang? That would be the Constitution, that damned piece of paper that gets in the way of an oligarchy and the extinguishing of the flame of Liberty once and for all.

If you use the logic presented in this document and the train of thought they project:

If you dare to speak the truth about the economy, you are probably a threat and need to be watched.

If you dare to speak the truth about the financial industry, you are probably a conspiracy theorist and a threat and need to be watched.

If you do not blindly accept all programs, reports and proclamations from Washington, D.C. or your state’s government, you are probably a threat and need to be watched.

If you buy freeze dried foods or more than the FEMA recommended 3 cans of tuna fish, you are probably a thread and need to be watched.

If you pray to God and acknowledge the sweet baby Jesus as your Savior, you are probably a threat and need to be watched.

If you did not vote for the current regime, you are probably a threat and need to be watched.

If you believe it is a crime to remove an 8 month old baby from the womb and kill it by stabbing surgical scissors into the base of its skull, you are probably a threat and need to be watched.

If you advocate the United States Constitution, you are probably a threat and need to be watched.

I’m sorry but being equated with a raghead Islamofacist camel jockey who uses his wives and children to carry vest bombs on to a busload of five year old children in the Middle East then prays to Mecca based on the writings of a child molesting “prophet” does not just insult me, it infuriates me. The fact that America has reached this level of distortion, the fact that we are tagging people with alternative ideas, be they of the Christian faith or other, and the fact that espousing the Bill of Rights is now being criminalized to insure political hegemony over a society should be a wake up call to those on the fence. This document, regardless of its outcome, being leaked to the media and validated by reliable news sources the day before the Tea Party protests was done so to scare people away from these events and to have their attendees tagged with the “radical nutcase” label.

Based on that reason alone, I shall try to finish my business in South Florida tomorrow and attempt to attend the gathering in Sarasota. So Ms. Napalitano, bring your camera, I’ll be the man in black.

This now brings validation to the fears of many in my opinion. The fear that everyone who was of the camp that believed that we are on the path to a police state is now a realistic possibility not because some internet or shortwave radio program told you so; we have all heard and discussed this for years on end. The size and scope of this document after the leak of the Missouri State Police report indicates that it is no longer an isolated incident but in fact that there is a coordinated effort to insure data gathering on malcontents shall continue at full speed ahead under the auspices that those who disagree with either political party and their actions will be met with massive intimidation from the State.

Unfortunately the Stasi model is not the program that will be adopted as there is enough history and information on their activities to dilute their effectiveness if such a program were implemented in the United States. Instead, the program will consist of enforcement and oversight will emanate from the school teacher via the children, the cashier at your local warehouse club, or even the clerk at the local shooting range. Worse, it could be that sweet little eighty year old lady who lives across the street from you. What the State usually does when faced with the unknown is to reward the people you interact with on a daily basis, such as a “Citizen’s Freedom Initiative” where neighbors are asked to report “suspicious” activity to an anonymous 800 number which could result in financial rewards. What a great concept during an economic downturn. Would you care to gamble on the quality of the data that eight year old provides should she see you carrying your rifle case into your home and later a case of canned corned beef?

Such a program will provide the government with immunity from criticism as they can always blame the citizen should a court eventually find their seizure of your personal property during an “investigation” into a conspiracy to commit a Federal felony charge as illegal and unjust. Unfortunately you can never recover your reputation nor your belongings once America travels down that road. You will lose your job, your savings and the trust of friends and family alike. All because you dared to advocate any one of the Amendments to our Constitution or worse, believed that the Emperor’s new clothes were covering up a future wrought with tyranny.

I am very fearful for our nation now. The radical Statists who control our society now, both Democrat and Republican, have created a nation where people who follow the example of our Founding Fathers like Franklin and Washington, Monroe and Adams, and dare to pray for the salvation of our country, can now be lumped into the same category of the ‘ragheads’ who flew airplanes into the World Trade Centers on September 11, 2001.

We, like Thomas Jefferson, are all ragheads now.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Elephant in the Room: Obama vs. United States

The president is contemptuous of American values. And one key nominee prefers the judgment of other countries and global elites.

By Rick Santorum

Watching President Obama apologize last week for America's arrogance - before a French audience that owes its freedom to the sacrifices of Americans - helped convince me that he has a deep-seated antipathy toward American values and traditions. His nomination of former Yale Law School Dean Harold Koh to be the State Department's top lawyer constitutes further evidence of his disdain for American values.

This seemingly obscure position in Foggy Bottom's bureaucratic maze is one of the most important in any administration, shaping foreign policy in the courts and playing a critical role in international negotiations and treaties.

Let's set aside Koh's disputed comments about the possible application of Sharia law in American jurisprudence. The pick is alarming for more fundamental reasons having to do with national sovereignty and constitutional self-governance.

What is indisputable is that Koh calls himself a "transnationalist." He believes U.S. courts "must look beyond national interest to the mutual interests of all nations in a smoothly functioning international legal regime. ..." He thinks the courts have "a central role to play in domesticating international law into U.S. law" and should "use their interpretive powers to promote the development of a global legal system."

Koh's "transnationalism" stands in contrast to good, old-fashioned notions of national sovereignty, in which our Constitution is the highest law of the land. In the traditional view, controversial matters, whatever they may be, are subject to democratic debate here. They should be resolved by the American people and their representatives, not "internationalized." What Holland or Belgium or Kenya or any other nation or coalition of nations thinks has no bearing on our exercise of executive, legislative, or judicial power.

Koh disagrees. He would decide such matters based on the views of other countries or transnational organizations - or, rather, those entities' elites.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

O'S AMATEUR HOUR

By RALPH PETERS

April 8, 2009 --

THE real climax of President Obama's Spring Apologies Tour wasn't his photo op with our troops in Baghdad or even his "American Guilt" concerts in Western Europe.

While fans in the press cheered wildly at every venue, the real performance came in Turkey. And it was a turkey.

Obama means well. Just as Jimmy Carter, his policy godfather, meant well. But the road to embassy takeovers and strategic humiliation is paved with good intentions -- coupled with distressing naivete.

On every stage, Obama draped Lady Liberty in sackcloth and ashes, drawing plentiful applause but no serious economic or security cooperation in return. Then, in Turkey, he surrendered our national pride, undercut our interests and interfered in matters that aren't his business.

On the latter point: Suppose the European Union president went to Cuba and insisted that the world's sunniest concentration camp should be welcomed into NAFTA? That's the equivalent of what our president did in Ankara on Monday when he declared that he supports Turkey's bid for EU membership.

The Europeans don't want Turkey in their club. Because Turkey isn't a European state, nor is its culture European. And it isn't our business to press Europe to embrace a huge, truculent Muslim country suffering a creeping Islamist coup.

The Europeans were appalled by Turkey's neo-Taliban tantrum on-stage at last week's NATO summit. The Turks fought to derail the appointment of a great Dane, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, as the new NATO secretary general. Why? Because he didn't stone to death the Danish cartoonist who caricatured Mohammed.

Which brings us to the even bigger problem: Obama has no idea what's going on in Turkey. By going to Ankara on his knees, he gave his seal of approval to a pungently anti-American Islamist government bent on overturning Mustapha Kemal's legacy of the separation of mosque and state.

Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party, the AKP, means headscarves, Korans, censorship and stacked elections. The country's alarmed middle class opposes the effort to turn the country into an Islamic state. Obama's gushing praise for the AKP's bosses left them aghast.

Obama's embrace of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (now orchestrating show trials of his opponents) was one step short of going to Tehran and smooching President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

What was Obama thinking? He wasn't. He relied on advice from State Department appeasement artists who understand neither Turkey, Islam nor the crises raging between the Bosporus and the Indus. State's answer is always "More love, more humility, more aid."

Well, I, for one, don't think our country has anything to apologize for, either to Turkey or to Europe.

Insisting that America's always guilty, Obama omitted any mention of Turkey's wartime betrayals of our troops, its continuing oppression of its Kurd minority or the AKP's determination to turn a state with a secular constitution into a Wahhabi playground.

When it came to the Armenian genocide, Obama bravely ducked: He never dared use the g-word.

And Obama's disdainful remarks about President Bush were just shabby.

After those overpriced tour T-shirts have shrunk in the wash (trust me -- they will), what will we have gained from Obama's superstar act?

He told the Europeans that the global economic crisis is all our fault. No mention of European greed, overleveraged governments, destructive Euro-loans or Chinese currency manipulation. We did it. Whip us, please.

In return, the Europeans gave him . . . nothing.

Even though Obama was right when he said that Europe faces a greater terror threat than we do, the entire continent only ponied up 2,500 short-term non-combat troops for Afghanistan. The Europeans know we'll do the heavy lifting.

He gave the Russians yet another blank check, too. (Meanwhile, in Moscow, Putin's thugs beat an aging pro-democracy dissident to a pulp.) In return, the Russians promised to . . . well, actually, they didn't promise anything.

Then Obama went to Turkey, undercut secular political parties, infuriated the Europeans -- and disclaimed our country's Judeo-Christian heritage. (Did Turkey's leaders respond by denying Islam's importance to them? Naw.)

In Turkey, Obama got . . . nothing we didn't already have.

Then he went to Iraq and told its prime minister that Iraq would get nothing.

I believe that our president wants to do the right thing. But he doesn't have a clue how. For now, he's enraptured by the applause. But he hasn't tried to charge his fans for their tickets. And they've already made up their minds they won't have to pay.

Ralph Peters is Fox News' strategic analyst and the author of "Looking for Trouble."

Monday, April 6, 2009

This is Geithner’s and Wall Street’s Dirty Little Secret

One significant law was the repeal of the 1933 Depression-era Glass-Steagall Act that prohibited mergers of commercial banks, insurance companies and brokerage firms like Merrill Lynch or Goldman Sachs. A second law backed by Treasury Secretary Summers in 2000 was an obscure but deadly important Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000. That law prevented the responsible US Government regulatory agency, Commodity Futures Trading Corporation (CFTC), from having any oversight over the trading of financial derivatives. The new CFMA law stipulated that so-called Over-the-Counter (OTC) derivatives like Credit Default Swaps, such as those involved in the AIG insurance disaster, (which investor Warren Buffett once called ‘weapons of mass financial destruction’), be free from Government regulation.

At the time Summers was busy opening the floodgates of financial abuse for the Wall Street Money Trust, his assistant was none other than Tim Geithner, the man who today is US Treasury Secretary. Today, Geithner’s old boss, Larry Summers, is President Obama’s chief economic adviser, as head of the White House Economic Council. To have Geithner and Summers responsible for cleaning up the financial mess is tantamount to putting the proverbial fox in to guard the henhouse.

The ‘Dirty Little Secret’

What Geithner does not want the public to understand, his ‘dirty little secret’ is that the repeal of Glass-Steagall and the passage of the Commodity Futures Modernization Act in 2000 allowed the creation of a tiny handful of banks that would virtually monopolize key parts of the global ‘off-balance sheet’ or Over-The-Counter derivatives issuance.

Today five US banks according to data in the just-released Federal Office of Comptroller of the Currency’s Quarterly Report on Bank Trading and Derivatives Activity, hold 96% of all US bank derivatives positions in terms of nominal values, and an eye-popping 81% of the total net credit risk exposure in event of default.

The five are, in declining order of importance: JPMorgan Chase which holds a staggering $88 trillion in derivatives (€66 trillion!). Morgan Chase is followed by Bank of America with $38 trillion in derivatives, and Citibank with $32 trillion. Number four in the derivatives sweepstakes is Goldman Sachs with a ‘mere’ $30 trillion in derivatives. Number five, the merged Wells Fargo-Wachovia Bank, drops dramatically in size to $5 trillion. Number six, Britain’s HSBC Bank USA has $3.7 trillion.

After that the size of US bank exposure to these explosive off-balance-sheet unregulated derivative obligations falls off dramatically. Just to underscore the magnitude, trillion is written 1,000,000,000,000. Continuing to pour taxpayer money into these five banks without changing their operating system, is tantamount to treating an alcoholic with unlimited free booze.

The Government bailouts of AIG to over $180 billion to date has primarily gone to pay off AIG’s Credit Default Swap obligations to counterparty gamblers Goldman Sachs, Citibank, JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America, the banks who believe they are ‘too big to fail.’ In effect, these five institutions today believe they are so large that they can dictate the policy of the Federal Government. Some have called it a bankers’ coup d’etat. It definitely is not healthy.

This is Geithner’s and Wall Street’s Dirty Little Secret that they desperately try to hide because it would focus voter attention on real solutions. The Federal Government has long had laws in place to deal with insolvent banks. The FDIC places the bank into receivership, its assets and liabilities are sorted out by independent audit. The irresponsible management is purged, stockholders lose and the purged bank is eventually split into smaller units and when healthy, sold to the public. The power of the five mega banks to blackmail the entire nation would thereby be cut down to size. Ooohh. Uh Huh?

F. William Engdahl

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Judicial Nominee "Prayers to Allah Okay, But Not to Jesus

Judicial Nominee Says Prayers to Allah Okay, But Not to Jesus
March 26, 2009 –
True to his campaign promises, President Barack Hussein Obama has picked a rabid judicial activist as his first federal court pick. Judge David Hamilton has been chosen by Obama to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit.

Hamilton is precisely what Obama wants in a judge: Someone who ignores the Constitution and imposes his own liberal ideas on each case. Hamilton will have what Obama calls “empathy” for the poor, child molesters, abortionists, murderers, etc.

Hamilton has ideal liberal credentials. He is a former ACLU lawyer and was a fundraiser for the corrupt group known as ACORN. This organization engages in fraudulent voter registration campaigns and is deeply involved in housing and poverty issues. Obama was an attorney for ACORN when he worked as a “community organizer” in Chicago. ACORN will be gathering data for the 2010 Census.

This lawyer is so radical that the liberal ABA rated him as “not qualified” when Bill Clinton nominated him for a district court post in 1994.

As a judge, Hamilton was a friend of abortionists, criminals, drug pushers and child sex offenders. He made is easier for child sex offenders to move around Indiana by invalidating a law designed to protect children. He helps criminals by suppressing evidence and warrants. He has ruled against waiting periods for those women seeking abortions.

Hamilton is also an enemy of the First Amendment and religious freedom. Interestingly enough, Hamilton has ruled that prayers in Jesus Name at the Indiana House of Representatives was unconstitutional, but prayers to Allah were not.

The Senate Judiciary Committee should soundly reject him as an out-of-control radical who has no respect for the Constitution or the rule of law. With a liberal majority on this committee, however, it is likely that Hamilton will be easily approved and his nomination will then go to the full Senate for confirmation. With a liberal majority in the Senate, his confirmation is virtually assured.

Hamilton’s confirmation will be one more nail in the coffin of freedom in America – and Obama will have been the hammer.

Traditional Values Coalition, March 26, 2009