The Democrat Housing Crisis

Here is an area that John McCain can put his money where his mouth is.  He was one of a number of Republican Senators who called for reform of Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs), such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, back in May of 2006.  Notice that the letter is calling for reform and regulatory oversight of these agencies.

The failure of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is a Democrat scandal. Here is a brief time line of the developments over the years:

1977:  Pres. Jimmy Carter signs the Community Reinvestment Act into Law.  The law pressured financial institutions to extend home loans to those who would otherwise not qualify.   The Premise:  Home ownership would improve poor and crime-ridden communities and neighborhoods in terms of crime, investment, jobs, etc.   Despite this act, statistics show that it did not help.

1992:  Republican representative Jim Leach (IO) warned of the danger that Fannie and Freddie were changing from being agencies of the public at large to money machines for the principals and the stockholding few.

1993:  Clinton extensively rewrote Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s rules turning the quasi-private mortgage-funding firms into semi-nationalized monopolies dispensing cash and loans to large Democratic voting blocks and handing favors, jobs and contributions to political allies.  This potent mix led inevitably to corruption and now the collapse of Freddie and Fannie.

1994:  Despite warnings, Clinton unveiled his National Home-Ownership Strategy which broadened the CRA in ways congress never intended.

1995:  Congress, about to change from a Democrat majority to Republican, Clinton orders Robert Rubin’s Treasury Dept to rewrite the rules.  Robt. Rubin’s Treasury reworked rules, forcing banks to satisfy quotas for sub-prime and minority loans to get a satisfactory CRA rating.  The rating was key to expansion or mergers for banks.  Loans began to be made on the basis of race and little else.

1997 – 1999:  Clinton, bypassing Republicans, enlisted Andrew Cuomo, then Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, allowing Freddie and Fannie to get into the sub-prime market in a big way.  Led by Rep. Barney Frank and Sen. Chris Dodd, congress doubled down on the risk by easing capital limits and allowing them to hold just 2.5% of capital to back their investments vs. 10% for banks.  Since they could borrow at lower rates than banks their enterprises boomed.

With incentives in place, banks poured billions in loans into poor communities requiring no money down and no verification of income.   Worse still was the cronyism:  Fannie and Freddie became home to out-of work-politicians, mostly Clinton Democrats.  384 politicians got big campaign donations from Fannie and Freddie.  Over $200 million had been spent on lobbying and political activities.  During the 1990’s Fannie and Freddie enjoyed a subsidy of as much as $182 Billion, most of it going to principals and shareholders, not poor borrowers as claimed.

Did it work?  Minorities made up 49% of the 12.5 million new homeowners but many of those loans have gone bad and the minority home ownership rates are shrinking fast.

1999: New Treasury Secretary, Lawrence Summers, became alarmed at Fannie and Freddie’s excesses.  Congress held hearings the ensuing year but nothing was done because Fannie and Freddie had donated millions to key congressmen and radical groups, ensuring no meaningful changes would take place.  “We manage our political risk with the same intensity that we manage our credit and interest rate risks,” Fannie CEO Franklin Raines, a former Clinton official and current Barack Obama adviser (according to the Washington Post), bragged to investors in 1999.

2000:   Secretary Summers sent Undersecretary Gary Gensler to Congress seeking an end to the “special status”.  Democrats raised a ruckus as did Fannie and Freddie, headed by politically connected CEO’s who knew how to reward and punish.  “We think that the statements evidence a contempt for the nation’s housing and mortgage markets” Freddie spokesperson Sharon McHale said.  It was the last chance during the Clinton era for reform.

2001:   Republicans try repeatedly to bring fiscal sanity to Fannie and Freddie but Democrats blocked any attempt at reform; especially Rep. Barney Frank and Sen.Chris Dodd who now run key banking committees and were huge beneficiaries of campaign contributions from the mortgage giants.

2003:  Bush proposes what the NY Times called “the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago”.  Even after discovering a scheme by Fannie and Freddie to overstate earnings by $10.6 billion to boost their bonuses, the Democrats killed reform.

2005:  Then Fed chairman Alan Greenspan warns Congress:  “We are placing the total financial system at substantial risk”.  Sen. McCain, with two others, sponsored a Fannie/Freddie reform bill and said, “If congress does not act, American taxpayers will continue to be exposed to the enormous risk that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac pose to the housing market, the overall financial system and the economy as a whole”.  Sen. Harry Reid accused the GOP of trying to “cripple the ability of Fannie and Freddie to carry out their mission of expanding home ownership”  The bill went nowhere.

2006: Republican Senators, including John McCain, call for Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac reform yet again in the above letter from May 2006.

2007:  By now Fannie and Freddie own or guarantee over HALF of the $12 trillion US mortgage market.  The mortgage giants, whose executive suites were top-heavy with former Democratic officials, had been working with Wall St. to repackage the bad loans and sell them to investors.  As the housing market fell in ’07, subprime mortgage portfolios suffered major losses.  The crisis was on,  though it was 15 years in the making.

2008:  McCain has repeatedly called for reforming the behemoths, Bush urged reform 17 times.  Still the media have repeated Democrats’ talking points about this being a “Republican” disaster.  A few Republicans are complicit but Fannie and Freddie were created by Democrats, regulated by Democrats, largely run by Democrats and protected by Democrats.

A video from the hearings.

Another fairly well done video summarizing the crisis from beginning to end.

The fact that the Democrats and their willing accomplices in the media are attempting to hang this stinking albatross around the necks of Republicans is just dishonest.  Could 2008 be the year known as the “death of the objective media?”

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Offshore Drilling Ban to Expire October 1st

That’s right folks….if the Democrat led Congress doesn’t renew the ban. Think about it…we have $4 per gallon gasoline, billions of dollars per year going to Saudi Arabia and the Middle East, a Democrat presidential candidate telling you to save gas by filling up your tires, and a Democrat congress that will actually renew a ban on drilling for our own resources. All I have to say is I better not hear a word from a liberal anywhere about us being dependent on foreign oil if they actually go through with this.

The saving light for this looming issue may be the Republicans. Republicans are actually threatening to shut down Capitol Hill to ensure that this ban does expire on October 1st. It may get hairy though…in order to do this Republicans would have to vote against a resolution to fund the federal government for the 2009 fiscal year. A similar tactic was done in 1995 when a Newt Gingrich led congress tried the same thing and it blew up in the Republican’s face. The public blamed Republicans for late Social Security checks and lost Medicare checks.

However, this time public opinion is in the Republican’s corner. The overwhelming majority of Americans support drilling for our own resources, so what is necessary is informing them of the Democrat led effort to renew the ban on offshore drilling. The Republicans have five weeks until Congress is back in session. Can they do it? It’s a tall task when the media is doing everything they can to elect Barack Obama along with every other Democrat in the country.

Spread the word and call your congressman to oppose this ban on drilling!

More Che-Obama Sightings

Che and Obama

This isn’t the first sighting of the pictures of these two together. The first was in Obama’s Houston campaign office, where a Che Guevara flag was prominently displayed.

Here the two are displayed in an Ohio judge’s office. Apparently this judge has an attraction to mass murders and Communist thugs–and Barack Obama. In case you’re unfamiliar with Che Guevara, here is a Slate.com article that succinctly sums up the impact Che had on Latin America.

Is this just a coincidence? If it is, it is a recurring one. Little Green Footballs has reported that there are dozens of Communist, Antisemite, and 9/11 conspiracy blogs posted at my.barackobama.com website. If you don’t believe it, see for yourself. Most of the links are still good, even though the Obama people are frantically trying to delete these blogs.

But Obama supporters won’t be deterred. The Kool-Aid has been good for this long, so why stop drinking it? It wouldn’t matter what was uncovered about the Obamessiah…he’s the one for them and the one to bring change….or is it Che’nge?

Barack Obama: Media Darling

If you follow politics closely, there is a distinct media bias in this country that is evidenced almost on a daily basis. In this current political season regarding Barack Obama, it is more observable than ever.

Never in my life have I witnessed one politician “misspeak” so many times in such a short period and have it utterly ignored my the main stream media. Most candidates are crucified for gaffes. Can you remember what happened with Dan Quayle spelled potatoe? Or when John Kerry said he voted for the $87 billion before he voted against it?

Obama Pakistan

Michelle Malkin compiled a list of gaffes made by Barack Obama in just the last year.

— Last May, he claimed that tornadoes in Kansas killed a whopping 10,000 people: “In case you missed it, this week, there was a tragedy in Kansas. Ten thousand people died — an entire town destroyed.” The actual death toll: 12.

— Earlier this month in Oregon, he redrew the map of the United States: “Over the last 15 months, we’ve traveled to every corner of the United States. I’ve now been in 57 states? I think one left to go.”

— Last week, in front of a roaring Sioux Falls, S.D., audience, Obama exulted: “Thank you, Sioux City. … I said it wrong. I’ve been in Iowa for too long. I’m sorry.”

— Explaining last week why he was trailing Hillary Clinton in Kentucky, Obama again botched basic geography: “Sen. Clinton, I think, is much better known, coming from a nearby state of Arkansas. So it’s not surprising that she would have an advantage in some of those states in the middle.” On what map is Arkansas closer to Kentucky than Illinois?

— Obama has as much trouble with numbers as he has with maps. Last March, on the anniversary of the Bloody Sunday march in Selma, Ala., he claimed his parents united as a direct result of the civil rights movement:

“There was something stirring across the country because of what happened in Selma, Ala., because some folks are willing to march across a bridge. So they got together and Barack Obama Jr. was born.”

Obama was born in 1961. The Selma march took place in 1965. His spokesman, Bill Burton, later explained that Obama was “speaking metaphorically about the civil rights movement as a whole.”

— Earlier this month in Cape Girardeau, Mo., Obama showed off his knowledge of the war in Afghanistan by homing in on a lack of translators: “We only have a certain number of them, and if they are all in Iraq, then it’s harder for us to use them in Afghanistan.” The real reason it’s “harder for us to use them” in Afghanistan: Iraqis speak Arabic or Kurdish. The Afghanis speak Pashto, Farsi or other non-Arabic languages.

— Over the weekend in Oregon, Obama pleaded ignorance of the decades-old, multi-billion-dollar massive Hanford nuclear waste cleanup:

“Here’s something that you will rarely hear from a politician, and that is that I’m not familiar with the Hanford, uuuuhh, site, so I don’t know exactly what’s going on there. (Applause.) Now, having said that, I promise you I’ll learn about it by the time I leave here on the ride back to the airport.”

I assume on that ride, a staffer reminded him that he’s voted on at least one defense authorization bill that addressed the “costs, schedules, and technical issues” dealing with the nation’s most contaminated nuclear waste site.

— Last March, the Chicago Tribune reported this little-noticed nugget about a fake autobiographical detail in Obama’s “Dreams from My Father”:

“Then, there’s the copy of Life magazine that Obama presents as his racial awakening at age 9. In it, he wrote, was an article and two accompanying photographs of an African-American man physically and mentally scarred by his efforts to lighten his skin. In fact, the Life article and the photographs don’t exist, say the magazine’s own historians.”

— And in perhaps the most seriously troubling set of gaffes of them all, Obama told a Portland crowd over the weekend that Iran doesn’t “pose a serious threat to us” — cluelessly arguing that “tiny countries” with small defense budgets can’t do us harm — and then promptly flip-flopped the next day, claiming, “I’ve made it clear for years that the threat from Iran is grave

People are going to eventually catch onto this. If he claims Arabic is spoken in Afghanistan or that there he’s been to 57 states during one of the debates with McCain, Obama will be in real trouble. The media won’t be able to hide that one anymore. Right now, he’s got the entire national media in his back pocket, so no one hears about the gaffes that he makes in Podunk City, Indiana.

The media and money machine that is Barack Obama will continue to roll through November unless:

1. The Republicans figure out a message (and a conservative one at that)

2. The public realizes out how clueless Obama is

3. Hillary figures out a way to steal the nomination. Don’t think it’s out of the question yet.

4. That “kill whitey” video of Michelle Obama surfaces (I’ve heard that one does exist)

I’m not too optimistic, but I’m hoping that at least #1 happens before 2012.

Obama Asks Us To Sacrifice Our Food

In front of a crowd of 75,000 people in Portland, Oregon, Barack Obama made the following statment:

“We can’t drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times … and then just expect that other countries are going to say OK”

This type of speech sounds strangely familiar to what we heard out of John Kerry four years ago with his “global test” comment. But is Obama for real with these comments? Is he really prepared to limit driving and how much we eat?

Is this what his campaign is about? Limiting our freedoms? Because if it is, it sounds and awful lot like socialism to me. Would an Obama Administration really bring an end to “eating as much as we want?” Do we need other countries’ approval to eat as much as we want or drive as much as we want? Under Obama, would we really need the government’s approval to set our thermostats to 72 degrees?

If Obama isn’t serious about this, then why is he bringing it up on the campaign trail? And how does he intend on regulating our overeating? Air strikes on Chinese buffets across America?

Michelle Obama has made similar statments:

“The truth is, in order to get things like universal health care and a revamped education system, then someone is going to have to give up a piece of their pie so that someone else can have more.”

Translation: You have to give up your good education and good healthcare so everyone can have lousy education and healthcare, because that’s the new American way.

The Obama’s preach the Robin Hood philosophy. Take more from the rich and give more to the poor. Maybe someone close to Michelle should share with her that we already spend 60% of our federal budget on entitlements. If you get that number any higher we are bordering on an entire nanny state and the complete wussification of America. But, that of course, is the new goal of the Democratic party.

Bush Administration Falls for Polar Bear Gimmick

As originally reported on TownHall.com, the Bush administration took a page from Al Gore’s playbook and named the polar bear to the “threatened species” list because of anticipated losses of the polar bear due to global warming. Computer models show that loss of polar ice caps may degrade the polar bear population down to endangered species levels in approximately 45 years. So by adding the polar bear to the threatened species list, it might slow a population decline if global warming is true.

Of course, these computer models probably aren’t aware that all of the allegedly lost polar ice has now frozen back. Or maybe they didn’t hear any of the latest research that continues to debunk the entire man-made global warming myth. Perhaps the computer just forgot to take into account that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service currently reports that polar bear populations are on the rise. There are currently between 20,000 and 25,000 polar bears, which is up from the low of 5,000 to 10,000 in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

Now of course, we should expect the environmental lobby and the EPA to accept any computer model that furthers their agenda of man-made global warming. However, we should not accept the Bush administration recognizing the same kind of computer generated models without asking the hard questions and challenging the “facts” laid out by the environmental lobby. For this, the Bush administration should be ashamed. They have largely given the opponents of legitimate domestic energy production (i.e. Progressives and Democrats) another reason not to explore for any oil or natural gas in the entire state of Alaska. Can’t you just hear Chuck Schumer arguing that drilling in Alaska will threaten the population of polar bears 45 years from now?

Maybe if conservatives and Republicans are lucky, domestic energy production will be at the forefront of the Presidential campaign this year. It’s funny that the main people you hear railing against the U.S. purchasing oil from the Middle East are Democrats, yet Democrats are the main opponents of domestic energy production.

As reported by Gateway Pundit:

Which party blocked the development of new sources of petroleum?– Democrat
Which party blocked drilling in ANWR?– Democrat
Which party blocked drilling off the coast of Florida?– Democrat
Which party blocked drilling off of the east coast?– Democrat
Which party blocked drilling off of the west coast?– Democrat
Which party blocked drilling off the Alaskan coast?– Democrat
Which party blocked building oil refineries?– Democrat
Which party blocked clean nuclear energy production?– Democrat
Which party blocked clean coal production?– Democrat

We are in very grave danger of being completely dependent on foreign oil because of the Democrats in Washington, and yet the general public blames the Republicans for America’s dependence on foreign oil. Despite the fact that oil is at $127 a barrel, Democrats continue to demonize American oil companies and impede their ability to search for new oil reserves or tap the known reserves that would bring down the global price of oil.

But now, thanks to the pandering by the Bush administration and liberal “environmental friendly” Republicans like John McCain, we might very well see Alaska added to the “No Drilling” zone as well. And all because a computer owned by someone in the environmental lobby told us that there might be fewer polar bears in 2053. Unless this pandering by some on the right stops, the Republicans are heading for a monumental and embarrassing defeat in November.

Terrorists For Obama

Hamas, the Palestinian Sunni Islamist militant organization (i.e. terrorist group) and political party has come out in support of their favorite U.S. Presidential candidate….Barack Obama. Hamas’ top political adviser in the Gaza Strip, Ahmed Yousef, said in an interview with World Net Daily and ABC radio that Hamas “hopes” Obama will win the presidential elections and “change” America’s foreign policy.

Yousef also went onto say this:

“I hope Mr. Obama and the Democrats will change the political discourse. … I do believe [Obama] is like John Kennedy, a great man with a great principal. And he has a vision to change America to make it in a position to lead the world community, but not with humiliation and arrogance.”

Naturally the Obama campaign ran away from this faster than it did from Rev. Jeremiah Wright a week ago. The only problem for the Obama campaign is the lingering question that will remain in voters’ minds in November. Why would a terrorist organization endorse Barack Obama?

Well, if you put yourself in the shoes of the leader of Hamas, what would you want out of America’s next President?

1. A weaker America with less military presence in the Middle East, thus allowing terrorist organizations to freely recruit, raise money, and grow.

2. A weak U.S. economy thus diminishing America’s presence in the world.

3. A more “tolerant” view of radical Islam.

4. Abandonment of Israel.

I’m not suggesting that these are Obama’s coming policies, but Hamas clearly believes that they will get more of these with Obama than they do with McCain. It is similar to Al Qaeda’s unofficial “endorsement” of John Kerry four years ago, by Al Qaeda leaders using Democratic talking points on an Al Jazeera released videotape. All organizations (labor unions, religious groups, nonprofit organizations) will endorse who they feel will be in their best interest. Terrorists want what is best for them too!

For those of us who aren’t hypnotized by Obama’s empty platitudes of change and hope, this really comes as no surprise. Obama has shown himself to be not only naive, but dangerously naive regarding foreign policy. He has suggested that he would have negotiations with Iran, Cuba, and Venezuela (without preconditions) and has suggested invading one of our allies, Pakistan. He has promised to raise taxes and has promised to immediately start pulling troops out of Iraq. He has promised to levy windfall taxes on American oil companies, which would not only wreck any hope America has of becoming energy independent, but would give foreign oil companies a distinct advantage over American oil companies. Nearly every Obama plan put forth thus far is a potential disaster that could literally take decades to fix once he left office. What better scenario for Hamas and other terrorist organizations to thrive under? A crippled America is in their best interests.

By mine and any other sane person’s calculations, Obama already has the perfect plan to accomplish the first three things on the Hamas wishlist. Raising taxes weakens the economy and pulling out of Iraq and Afghanistan weakens our influence in the Middle East. This would allow terrorist organizations to recruit, train, and expand freely. Hamas recognizes that Obama is a member of a church that has remained very vocally anti-Israel and pro-Palestinian for twenty years. Yousef even went so far as to say that Obama is just “kissing up to Jews” because that is “American politics”.

There will be much more of this in the coming months. No one issue will derail the Obama campaign, but a combination of the combined controversies of Jeremiah Wright, Tony Rezko, Bill Ayers, and a Hamas endorsement very well could. It just depends on how hungry Americans are for a change in the wrong direction.