On Wednesday, TurboTax Timmie and his crew are going to unveil the new financial regulation reforms that they have been talking about since he was installed as Treasury Secretary by the 111th Congress.
If, after reading the next two stories, you still think the Federal Reserve should not be abolished for being the #1 instigator in our economic woes, then I pity you and your declining standard of living.
Plan extends Fed’s power over companies
The Federal Reserve, already arguably the most powerful agency in the U.S. government, will get sweeping new authority to regulate any company whose failure could endanger the U.S. economy and markets under the Obama administration’s regulatory overhaul plan.
Please remember that the Federal Reserve is really a banking cartel; not a government agency, that was created in 1910 on Jekyll Island by NY bankers, and our government does not instruct The Fed; the power flows the opposite direction.
The final plan due to be released on Wednesday — which originally aimed to streamline and consolidate banking and securities regulation in one or two agencies — now is expected to sidestep most jurisdictional disputes and simply impose across the board standards to be applied by all financial regulators, according to administration and industry sources.
The most likely candidate for elimination is the Office of Thrift Supervision, whose failure to detect and forestall problems at Countrywide, IndyMac, Washington Mutual and other freewheeling mortgage lenders is thought to have contributed to the financial crisis.
The decision to concentrate sweeping new powers at the already overstretched Fed is not without controversy. Sen. Christopher J. Dodd, chairman of the Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, which must approve any regulatory overhaul, has raised objections to that approach, and so has Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila C. Bair.
Ms. Bair advocates an alternative where a council of top bank regulators would make decisions on whether to step in, regulate or close major corporations like the American International Group whose failure posed a risk to the whole economy and financial system. The Fed stepped in to save AIG last year without having such powers, but the result was a costly and muddled bailout that no one wants to repeat.
To accommodate dissenting views, the administration will propose that a council of regulators advise the Fed, although the Fed will have the final say, according to administration officials. The new powers augment the Fed’s existing broad authorities to intervene to prevent crises that could seriously damage the markets and economy.
And now for something totally expected from a banking cartel:
Bank of America reports threat by Fed
Bank of America’s chief executive Thursday for the first time said publicly that officials in the Bush administration and the Federal Reserve threatened to remove top executives of the bank unless the financial giant merged with the troubled Merrill Lynch for the good of the foundering economy.
Bank of America’s Kenneth Lewis told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that the threat was not the deciding factor in the bank’s acquisition of the nation’s largest investment banking firm. But he added: “What gave me concern was that they would make that threat to a bank in good standing.”
Ken? You are a moron! What does being a bank in good standing have to do with threats being made against a private company in a country that has as it’s basis, the Constitution and the Rule Of Law?
The testimony came as the No. 2 Republican in the House said President Obama’s handling of the auto company bailouts was comparable to the strong-arm tactics of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
If you have not thrown your support behind Ron Paul and H.R. 1207, now might be a good time before The Fed becomes tired of being a shadow chess player and just strangles the economy and country into submission.
On the surface, Lloyd’s Bank shutting down American’s bank accounts, and the transfer of the four Chinese Muslim Uighurs to Bermuda without so much as a “by your leave” to Britain, lacks any similarity, until of course, you read the fine print.
These two events have stemmed from two completely different policy stances by the current resident in the White House. First, closing Gitmo, and second, chasing down tax evaders, (excepting, of course, his cabinet. Can we fire congress and bambi yet?). Go here to catch up on what the British banks told Bambi to do back on May 25th, 2009.
Lloyds Bank hit by Obama tax purge
Banking group drops American customers in UK ahead of costly proposals to stamp out tax evasion
Lloyd’s Banking Group is ditching American customers based in Britain pending a crackdown on international tax evasion planned by President Barack Obama.
This week American private client account-holders at Lloyd’s received letters informing them of an “important change in policy regarding clients who are resident, domiciled or linked to the United States by property or asset holdings”. They were told the bank had “no choice” but to “cease acting as your investment manager.”
One letter sent to Bank of Scotland’s portfolio management division, which is now part of Lloyd’s, said: “The USA has a mature regulatory environment governed by its Securities and Exchange Commission. These regulations mean that we are not licensed to manage portfolios for US clients.”
The letter added: “Unfortunately we cannot offer an equivalent service from within Lloyd’s Banking Group.” Clients have been advised to transfer their assets.
One recipient, who has lived in the UK for over 25 years, said: “After all this time, I’ve suddenly been told I must take my money elsewhere and I don’t understand why. Now I’m scared that other banks won’t take me on either.”
In its letters to clients, Lloyd’s has not referred to specific legislation. But last month, The Sunday Telegraph reported that British banks and stockbrokers were threatening to close down accounts held by American citizens due to concerns over new international tax proposals could make it too expensive for them to service the clients.
As I stated in my earlier post:
An American Resident telling private British Banks how to do business. Anybody see anything wrong with that? How about we tell the IRS to take a flying leap, and all of these little problems between allies will disappear?
Now for the second event; Bermuda.
U.S. ‘riding roughshod’ over UK as Guantanamo detainees sent to Bermuda in secret deal
The U.S. is accused of ‘riding roughshod’ over the UK by failing to consult on a deal to send former Guantanamo detainees to British colony Bermuda.
Are you ready for it?
Senior MP Mike Gapes, who chairs the influential Commons foreign affairs committee, suggested Washington may have offered to go ‘soft’ on the island’s tax haven status as a sweetener.
Downing Street also pointed the finger at the Bermudan government for apparently acting beyond its powers in unilaterally accepting the four Chinese Muslim Uighurs.
It has ordered an urgent security check and is considering what steps to take over the controversial transfer, which took place yesterday.
Mr Gapes, a Labour MP, said: ‘The U.S. is clearly determined to act in what it perceives as its own national interest even riding roughshod over what it should have done, which is spoken to the British Government.
The proper authority here is the British Government and the U.S. should have consulted with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office before they did anything of this kind,’ he told BBC Radio 4’s The World at One.
‘I wonder what promises have been given to the Bermudians, potentially about going a bit soft on the tax haven status or something else as a quid pro quo.’
Shadow foreign secretary William Hague said it was ‘astonishing’ that Downing Street knew nothing about the situation.
‘It is astonishing that an agreement of such significance between the U.S. and Bermuda, involving the resettlement of four former terrorist suspects to a British Overseas Territory, could have taken place without a ripple reaching Whitehall,’ he said.
And now it would appear there is a reason not to tell Britain about the transfer of the detainees to Bermuda. The Brits may have asked for the same tax haven approach for their banks, yes?
And it would appear that Barack Obama is creating a carrot and stick policy approach that only echoes, “do as I say, not as I do.” What happened to “the rule of law” when it applies to policy decisions from the “constitutional professor”?
I cannot wait to see the unveiling of the new financial regulation reforms being outlined on Wednesday.
Can We Impeach Him Yet?
I saw this news item this morning, but it has been one hectic day and I just have not gotten a chance to ask you, “What would you call it?”…and, “How many others inside the beltway profited from this information?”
Durbin cashed out during big stock collapse
WASHINGTON | Asset sales came after meeting with Fed, Treasury chiefs
As U.S. stock markets plummeted last September, the Senate’s No. 2 Democrat, Dick Durbin, sold more than $115,000 worth of stocks and mutual-fund shares and used much of the money to invest in Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
The Illinois senator’s 2008 financial disclosure statement shows he sold mutual-fund shares worth $42,696 on Sept. 19, the day after then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke urged congressional leaders in a closed meeting to craft legislation to help financially troubled banks. The same day, he bought $43,562 worth of Berkshire Hathaway’s Class B stock, the disclosure shows.
Altogether, Durbin sold investments worth $116,000 in September. By Oct. 2, he had invested $98,046 in Omaha, Neb.-based Berkshire Hathaway, the form shows.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index plunged 4.7 percent last Sept. 15 after the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and Bank of America Corp.’s government-engineered takeover of Merrill Lynch & Co. By the end of October, the index had fallen 22.6 percent.
“Durbin was doing what a lot of other people were doing, taking a look at their savings” and seeing it “start to tank and trying to preserve some level of wealth by getting out of the market,” said his spokesman, Joe Shoemaker.
I’m really glad Mr. Durbin was able to “preserve some level of wealth” while the rest of us are being drained bloodless through inflation, taxation, job loss, the economic meltdown, the un-Constitutional Chrysler and GM fiascos, etc.
Shoemaker said Durbin didn’t capitalize on anything Paulson and Bernanke told congressional leaders at the Sept. 18 meeting.
Whatever information Paulson gave lawmakers wasn’t secret or classified and was disclosed publicly the next day, Shoemaker said.
Just thought you might like to know what was happening while following the money.
I am still tracking how many millionaires have left the US for less financially brutal shores, and I will keep readers updated.
P.S. Can We Impeach Obama Yet?