Sunday, November 2, 2008

Lipstick on a Pig, Part 1 of 3

We begin with Treasury Secretary Looks Out for His Buddies First, by Jeffrey Carter, November 1, 2008; please see the original for links which I did not reproduce.

Hank Paulson has acted like the secretary of Wall Street rather than the secretary of the Treasury. This economic crisis manifested itself in August 2007 and nothing that Paulson has done has been a remedy for the problem. His solutions have only propped up his cronies on Wall Street. He is sidestepping the real problem in the market: counterparty risk. Only an independent clearing house can solve this crisis.

Secretary Paulson's bailout package does nothing for the problem. It injects money into bankrupt institutions by buying preferred stock, which only solves the easy part of the crisis. What if the stuff on the banks' books is worth less than they say? We will still have a problem. The crux of the problem is that there is so much counterparty risk that banks will not lend to each other. This has frozen what's called the interbank credit market. Banks do not trust each others' financial statements. This is why our credit system is clogged.

There are only two ways to get rid of counterparty risk. One is don't trade with each other. This is not an option; it's what is happening today. The other is to trade through an independent "clearing house" that erases counterparty risk by guaranteeing each trader is solvent. Once we recertify trust, the credit market will unlock and trading can resume.

I thought we established in Economic 9-11? that it was the job of the Federal Reserve to evaluate the general financial situations of its member banks.

In other words, we already have a "clearing house" -- but, the clearing house hasn't been doing its job.

The theory is that Federal Reserve -- which is not really a government entity, by the way -- is supposed to help police our financial sector.

The reality is that the Federal Reserve has become a place for cronies of those in power to leverage their knowledge of what is happening in the financial industry into big profits for select players on the financial scene.

We now consider Who's Behind the Economic Collapse? by Cliff Kincaid, October 28, 2008; again, please see the original for links that I did not reproduce.

Joe Biden made headlines by talking about a "generated crisis" for a President Obama. But is the current financial meltdown another "generated crisis?" Considering the problems in the economy, including too much federal debt, too much spending and easy credit, which have been with us for years, why did this crisis suddenly occur only six weeks before the election?

And is it just a coincidence that it occurred at a time when John McCain was leading in the national public opinion polls and appeared to be on his way to a November 4 election victory?

The crisis was man-made. It is a fact that President Bush's Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who worked for a Democratic firm, Goldman Sachs, and has very close ties to Communist China, is the one who convinced Bush to demand hundreds of billions of bailout dollars from Congress.

Let me interrupt this narrative to remind you all that Paulson is one of us rich, self-interested Republicans; Democrats, as we know, are all poor, or at the very least selflessly use their wealth for the benefit of all humanity, like George Soros does.

This is when McCain began falling in the polls. That's apparently because McCain, like Bush, is a Republican, and he has been blamed by Obama and the Democrats for the Republican policies that are said to have produced this crisis. This charge is debatable, but it has proven to be effective, with the cooperation of the major media.

Part of the problem, of course, was of McCain's own making. He voted for the $700-billion plan after flirting with the House conservatives opposing it. This was a major error on his part. He missed a critical opportunity to take on the incumbent President of his own party, Obama, the Democrats, and Wall Street interests.

The timing was important. If you examine the polling trend (see page two of this PDF document from Karl Rove & Company), one can see that McCain was moving ahead of Obama by mid-September. One poll, the Rasmussen poll, had McCain over Obama every day from September 12-17. McCain evened up the race again on September 23, after Obama had taken a lead, but it has been Obama ever since.

Clearly, the controversy over the legislative "bailout" or "rescue" for Wall Street, which emerged in a big way on September 18, changed the dynamics of the presidential race. It has hugely benefited Obama by making the economy take precedence over Obama's controversial associates, pro-socialist views, or lack of a background and security check.

The growing suspicion that the financial meltdown is a "generated crisis" has been fed by statements from President Bush himself that illegal financial activities were taking place. On September 18, when he made a public statement about the growing economic problems, Bush announced that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) was stepping up its enforcement actions "against illegal market manipulation."

Illegal market manipulation -- what have I written about in the few posts where I have addressed this crisis?

Stay tuned for Part 2.

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