FIRST, there is news that the Treasury Department REFUSES to keep tabs on how money is being spent:
It is safe to assume, however, that the investigations now in progress represent not even the tip of the iceberg. The most troubling feature of the SIG’s report is its documentation of reluctance on the part of Tim Geithner’s Treasury Department to make even modest efforts to protect the interests of the taxpayers. To take just one glaring example, Treasury has refused to require banks to account for what they do with the billions of dollars they receive in TARP money:
Treasury has indicated, however, that it will not adopt SIGTARP’s recommendation that all TARP recipients be required to do the following:
• account for the use of TARP funds
• set up internal controls to comply with such accounting
• report periodically to Treasury on the results, with appropriate sworn certifications
In light of the fact that the American taxpayer has been asked to fund this extraordinary effort to stabilize the financial system, it is not unreasonable that the public be told how those funds have been used by TARP recipients. Treasury is now conducting regular surveys of the banks’ lending activities; however, with the exception of Citigroup and Bank of America, Treasury has refused to seek further details on TARP recipients’ use of funds.
Not just failed, but “refused.” The report adds:
The American people have a right to know how their tax dollars are being used, particularly as billions of dollars are going to institutions for which banking is certainly not part of the institution’s core business and may be little more than a way to gain access to the low-cost capital provided under TARP.
Barack Obama’s hundred days have not gone as badly as Napoleon’s. In money terms, however, they have been considerably more expensive. Since his inauguration on January 20, 2009, President Obama has proposed new spending programs that will add over the next 10 years $6.5-trillion (all figures U.S.) to the American national debt. That’s $6.5-trillion over and above the debt that would have been incurred had the existing policies been left alone. (Not that those existing policies were so great either.)
That’s $65-billion in new debt every single day of the first 100. Expensive.
And this figure is surely too low, because it is based on (1) almost certainly unduly optimistic assumptions about the growth of the U.S. economy over the next few years and (2) unduly optimistic assumptions about the costs of President Obama’s health-care ideas.
If only Obama would employ Jack Bauer without restraints…
Jim Geraghty’s axiom continues to apply as another Barack Obama Position Expiration Date arrives. After a series of rebuffs towards those who want war-crimes trials against Bush administration officials for allegedly approving torture, Obama reversed himself today and suggested that such trials might take place. Jake Tapper gives the details:
Earlier today, an employee of CB Richard Ellis forwarded me an internal memo distributed to all employees after the Washington Times exclusive on alleged abuse of power and conflict of interest by Senator Dianne Feinstein. The senior Senator from California allegedly pushed $25 billion to the FDIC in unusual federal funding at the same time the agency was granting a bid by CBRE to manage its residential-foreclosure properties and sell them at higher-than market commissions. CBRE’s board chairman is Richard Blum, Feinstein’s husband.
Needless to say, CBRE isn’t exactly impressed with the Washington Times, but their logic seems a little short of the mark here. I’m posting the memo in its entirety to ensure readers see the entire context. I’m removing the names on the memo, as they’re not really material to the story. An e-mail to CBRE’s media office has so far not been answered:
MORE INFORMATION FOUND HERE:
Funny how The Left accepts double standards on almost anything…
Greg Hengler gives us the Larry King matchup between Townhall’s Dennis Prager and Perez Hilton from last night. In boxing terms, this intellectual debate would be akin to Joe Louis vs Manny Pacquiao’s public-relations guy. It’s no contest. My friend Dennis talks about philosophy, history, and biology, while Perez mostly whines about his feelings. Perez’ corner should have thrown in the towel in the first minute.
If only they asked sooner, shareholder might have had money in their pockets…
Later, during the umpteenth question about MSNBC, another shareholder’s microphone was cut, according to multiple attendees.
“The crowd was very upset with MSNBC because of its leftward tilt,” one attendee said. “Some former employees said they were embarrassed by it.”
One specific complaint about MSNBC concerned Keith Olbermann’s interview of actress Janeane Garofalo, who likened conservatives to racists and spoke of “the limbic brain inside a right-winger.”
“They were upset that Olbermann didn’t bother to challenge her,” one GE shareholder said…
“My biggest surprise was the open hostility to MSNBC,” another shareholder said. “It was noticeable and loud. I don’t remember any of this going on last year.”
Amusing what people will do in the name of the Religion “Diversity”
Another ad, called “Parallel Lives,” features a boring white guy and an exciting Latino. White Guy is dull because “my neighborhood always stayed the same.” Latino is vivacious and engaging because his diverse neighborhood “always got more interesting!”
As best said here:
By Paul Ibrahim
April 20, 2009
In Obama’s America, I Am a Terrorist After All
I am an Arab male in my 20s. If I don’t fit the profile of your average terrorist, I’m not quite sure who does. Yet thanks to a culture of political correctness and the likes of the ACLU, I had it unreasonably easier than most after 9/11. Until, that is, the Obama Administration decided that my conservatism makes me a potential terrorist.
Rewind to the aftermath of 9/11. Not only were Obama-types making it difficult for airport security to even consider my background, but oftentimes made it so anyone but me was selected for extra screening. On many occasions I waltzed through security only to look behind me to see a little old black lady, or an elderly white man, pulled out for an additional search in an obvious exhibition of political correctness in a world where we’re supposedly trying to save lives.
My college experience was no different. I was automatically assumed to be a member of an imagined community of oppressed minorities, invited to diversity events that offered me special resources (because white people apparently come with such resources), and welcomed with open arms by members of an administration that cared more about the level of melanin in my skin than about my intellectual capacity.
Then they discovered I was a conservative. The rainbows, unicorns and Kumbayas abruptly vanished. Professors made plain their distaste for non-liberal views in the classroom. Minority groups were shocked that a “fellow” minority would speak out against their racially segregated dorms. In utter irony, even the vice provost for diversity personally attacked me in print for my calls for color-blindness – you see, if the world became successfully color-blind, he would have no job.
I too have wondered about this myself…
Romancing the Jihad
Why are so many on the Left enamored with Islamism?
By Clifford D. May
Ask those on the Left what values they champion, and they will say equality, tolerance, women’s rights, gay rights, workers’ rights, and human rights. Militant Islamists oppose all that, not infrequently through the application of lethal force. So how does one explain the burgeoning Left-Islamist alliance?
I know: There are principled individuals on the Left who do not condone terrorism or minimize the Islamist threat. The author Paul Berman, unambiguously and unashamedly a man of the Left, has been more incisive on these issues than just about anyone else. Left-of-center publications such as The New Republic have not been apologists for radical jihadists.
But The Nation has been soft on Islamism for decades. Back in 1979, editorial-board member Richard Falk welcomed the Iranian revolution, saying it “may yet provide us with a desperately-needed model of humane governance for a third-world country.” Immediately after Sept. 11, 2001, longtime Nation contributor Robert Fisk complained that “terrorism” is a “racist” term.
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