Fannie, Freddie execs next targets for SEC

Good news of aggressive enforcement action by the SEC, as reported by Associated Press:

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Securities and Exchange Commission has brought civil fraud charges against six former top executives at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, saying they misled the government and taxpayers about risky subprime mortgages the mortgage giants held during the housing bust.

Those charged include the agencies’ two former CEOs, Fannie’s Daniel Mudd and Freddie’s Richard Syron. They are the highest-profile individuals to be charged in connection with the 2008 financial crisis….

According to the lawsuit, Fannie told investors in 2007 that it had roughly $4.8 billion worth of subprime loans on its books. The SEC says that Fannie actually had about $43 billion worth of products targeted to borrowers with weak credit.

Freddie said about 11% of its single-family loans were subprime in 2007. The SEC says it was closer to about 18%.

“Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives told the world that their subprime exposure was substantially smaller than it really was,” said Robert Khuzami, SEC’s enforcement director. “These material misstatements occurred during a time of acute investor interest in financial institutions’ exposure to subprime loans, and misled the market about the amount of risk.”

Investors had every reason to believe that Fannie and Freddie executives were telling them the truth about the financial health of the two companies, which eventually were forced into bankruptcy with investors getting wiped out. However, the SEC court filings, available here, suggest that the agency has pretty strong evidence that they did not tell the truth, and in fact were actively deceptive in order to keep the stock prices, and their own compensation, artificially high.

The goal of the civil fraud charges is to force the six executives to surrender bonuses and stock options they received in that time frame and to pay penalties on top of those returned profits. Syron’s compensation, for example, “grew from approximately $14.7 million in 2006 to $18.3 million in 2007,” according to the SEC filing.

Despite the glee it inspires among conservatives, the case offers no evidence that Fannie and Freddie played a major role in causing the subsequent financial meltdown. To the contrary, the story told in the SEC filings confirms the narrative laid out in previous independent investigations by the Federal Reserve and the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission: The two “government-sponsored enterprises,” or GSEs, moved into the subprime market late in the game, and did so because they were losing market share to more aggressive private subprime mortgage companies. They allowed themselves to get sucked into the bubble, and if the SEC is correct they lied about it, but they did not cause the bubble in the first place.

For example, in its discussion of Freddie Mac’s role, the SEC writes:

“By 2005, the Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae combined share of the market for mortgage securitizations had fallen to approximately 42 percent from a high of nearly 60 percent in 2000. Within that shrinking GSE share of the market, Freddie Mac also had been steadily losing market share to Fannie Mae. Freddie Mac responded to this loss of market share by broadening its credit risk parameters to purchase and guarantee increasingly risky mortgages in its Single Family guarantee portfolio between approximately 2004 and 2007.”

In a similar case settled earlier, the SEC filed civil fraud charges against Angelo Mozilo, the former CEO and founder of Countrywide Financial. Mozilo paid $22.5 million to settle the case and forfeited another $45 million he was to otherwise receive.

116 comments Add your comment

Common Sense isn't very Common

December 16th, 2011
2:07 pm

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
2:12 pm

I think that is one sentiment we all can agree on. Now, what do you think the odds are we can get them to go after the Congressmen the were just as involved?

Kamchak

December 16th, 2011
2:16 pm

To the contrary, the story told in the SEC filings confirms the narrative laid out in previous independent investigations by the Federal Reserve and the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission: The two “government-sponsored enterprises,” or GSEs, moved into the subprime market late in the game, and did so because they were losing market share to more aggressive private subprime mortgage companies.

A point that will largely ignored amid the posts about Bwarney Fwanks, Carter, Clinton and the CRA.

Thomas

December 16th, 2011
2:17 pm

Oh Jay- you missed the juiciest- most enronesque parts-

too bad they can’t back track to Franklin Raines as well.

ByteMe

December 16th, 2011
2:17 pm

Mozilo paid $22.5 million to settle the case and forfeited another $45 million he was to otherwise receive.

And Mozillo’s compensation during the period he committed fraud was…?

Freddie Mac responded to this loss of market share by broadening its credit risk parameters

And hiring an historian to not provide any historical information to them for hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. Woo-hoo!

ByteMe

December 16th, 2011
2:18 pm

My problem is that the SEC continues to be intentionally underfunded by Congress so that they are forced to settle for less than otherwise makes any logical sense.

Bruno

December 16th, 2011
2:18 pm

In case any of you think we need to start a trade/tariff war with China:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/china-gets-revenge-obama-tariff-u-autos-213747820.html

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
2:19 pm

I’m going to step away from the narrative that Barney Franks or Clinton had anything to do with it, and blame it all on Kamchak. If memory serves he is a Chelsea fan, therefore he is inherently evil.

ByteMe

December 16th, 2011
2:22 pm

In case any of you think we need to start a trade/tariff war with China

Of course we need to start one, but not a tit-for-tat one where we target certain industries… we need to do it across the board, because they manipulate their currency as their way of attacking our manufacturing base.

Kamchak

December 16th, 2011
2:23 pm

If memory serves he is a Chelsea fan, therefore he is inherently evil.

Say what you will about The Blue Lions, but we’re the only ones that beat Man City in the EPL this year.

Thbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbtttt.

AmVet - Just say no to Republican fascists.

December 16th, 2011
2:25 pm

You know that the amount of thievery is unprecedented when the tiny number of fines levied are in the tens of millions of dollars and even that is not enough to make these banksters bat an eye.

To them, it is just another cost of doing business.

The worst government that dirty money can buy…

Jm

December 16th, 2011
2:25 pm

Wait. I thought Fannie and Freddie, overseen by Barney, were blameless.

That last paragraph sure leads one to a different conclusion. Hmmm

Frank and Dodd

Two very corrupt SOBs

They should be in jail

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
2:25 pm

We have our chance coming up this weekend. I just hope it isn’t as ugly as when we played Man U. That was horrible.

Jm

December 16th, 2011
2:26 pm

Next to last paragraph….

Keep Up the Good Fight!

December 16th, 2011
2:29 pm

And Jm skips the 4th to last paragraph……. anyone surprised?

Jm

December 16th, 2011
2:30 pm

Byteme
Sec just got a huge budget increase

Read up

Paul

December 16th, 2011
2:31 pm

“According to the lawsuit, Fannie told investors in 2007 that it had roughly $4.8 billion worth of subprime loans on its books. The SEC says that Fannie actually had about $43 billion worth of products targeted to borrowers with weak credit.”

Geesh… some people get so excited about where one little decimal point goes….

Civil, not criminal? Hmmmm.

And it also appears these two guys received substantial pay increase while company performance was declining.

If Republicans think running the government is like running a business, we’re in a world of hurt.

Note from last night’s debate: when pressed about Fannie/Freddie, Newt said he recommended MORE regulations.

Get that? A leading Republican contender called for MORE regulations. Yet the Right is quiet. Maybe they’re just not too good at listening? Or too good at incorporating facts that conflict with their narrative?

TaxPayer

December 16th, 2011
2:31 pm

Now how are these poor CEOs supposed to sit around creating jobs for hard-working people like the Newt if we continue to harass them like this instead of offering them praise via larger tax cuts and pay raises, I asks ya. :lol:

AmVet - A Happy KwanzChristmakkuh to al!

December 16th, 2011
2:31 pm

LOL at me. I was wondering why (ir)Rational was hating on the Clinton kid.

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
2:34 pm

AmVet – I hold no hate for the Clintons. Really I don’t. Not a huge fan of them by any means, but I hold no hate for them. Chelsea Clinton is blameless in my book, it isn’t her fault her parents are who they are. Speaking of which, she isn’t bad looking considering.

ByteMe

December 16th, 2011
2:35 pm

The Republican proposal released late yesterday calls for raising SEC spending by $136 million over 2011 levels, a change from earlier proposals that would have held the agency’s budget constant despite new responsibilities under the Dodd-Frank financial-regulation law.

Gee, Jm, that doesn’t sound like much of a “huge budget increase”… it went from $1.3 billion to 1.4 billion while increasing their scope. And yet we want perp-walks of these frauds and they’re the gang who would give them to us. Seems that Congress (cough cough) would want to fund them comparable to the deep pockets they’re charged with regulating. Never bring a knife to a gun fight.

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
2:36 pm

Now the Blue Lions of Chelsea, yeah, I have much hate (well, dislike could be a better word) for them. Matched only by the hate I have for Manchester (City and United) and the University(sic) of Georgia.

Kamchak

December 16th, 2011
2:37 pm

(ir)Rational

Of the top 4-5 clubs in the EPL, the Gunners is the one team I hold no animosity towards, so good luck on the road at Etihad Stadium this weekend and take all three points as we will also be on the road at Wigan.

Back Seater

December 16th, 2011
2:37 pm

Wonder how much this had to do with B Fwanks sudden decision to retire?

Stevie Ray

December 16th, 2011
2:38 pm

JAY,

I love this…bi-partisan thievery at it’s finest. I believe there is more the the story and that the very notion of quasi-public/quasi-private entities taking policy from corruptresentatives is a collosal idiotic conception. The GSE’s are very unique in this arrangement. Also, unique is the allowable political meddling as a result. What about the board members culpability and the battle cries from the likes of Francie Waters relative to the massive increase in loans to minorities, NEWT’s looting, Rahm Emmanuels looting, Bill Daly’s looting, Gorelich, Raines, Zoellich et al? Saying these guys and gals knew nothing of the toxicity of crap they underwrote is like saying Goldmann Sachs chairman and board are not responsible for dalliances of equal lunacy.

To minimize this as the crookery of a few and make every attempt to protect Democratic and GOP cronyism and it’s role in the great looting is naive and superficial.

Grover Norquist was touched by Sandusky

December 16th, 2011
2:38 pm

I’m all about profits and growing your business. But if you intentionally defraud investors, global investors, taxpayers, and employees. You should go to State Prison, not the federal prision, and do hardtime. A lot of these CEO’s and Hedge Fund managers are crooks. It’s not an attack on the rich, it the accountibility of their actions. Isn’t that what some NeoCons always quote, be accountible for your actions. First of all, being accountible is not a Gop value, it’s a human value.

Mom’s always told me that you can rob more people with a briefcase than with a gun………….

AmVet - A Happy KwanzChristmakkuh to al!

December 16th, 2011
2:39 pm

(ir)Rational, she may turn out like her mom (And a lot of other ladies), who kind of grew into her attractiveness…

As for Bill, I was always impressed by that photo of him as a very young man shaking JFK’s hand and truly being an example of a poor kid going from rags to riches.

As a prez?

He had some really good points and some really bad ones.

Paul to your point, until criminal laws are strengthened, the corproate crime wave, aided and abetted by the lackeys in Washington, is gonna continue to roll merrily along…

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
2:40 pm

Kam – Yeah, not sure I understand why, but it seems that very few people have an intense dislike for the Gunners. At least on this side of the pond. Good luck to y’all as well.

Paul

December 16th, 2011
2:41 pm

“Wonder how much this had to do with B Fwanks sudden decision to retire?”

Some bloggers never disappoint -

Guy Incognito

December 16th, 2011
2:42 pm

REP. BARNEY FRANK, D-MASS.: “I think this is a case where Fannie and Freddie are fundamentally sound, that they are not in danger of going under.”

Genius

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
2:44 pm

My problem is that the SEC continues to be intentionally underfunded by Congress so that they are forced to settle for less than otherwise makes any logical sense.

That’s all to set up the narrative that government is ineffective and needs to be cut. You must not have read the fine print in the memo. The best way to make government inefficient and ineffective is to underfund it and heap huge tasks onto it at the same time. If these politicians really wanted things to run effectively and without corruption, they could do so at the swipe of a pen. They’ll never do that because the very people who fund their thirst for power and prestige pay them to ensure they look the other way at corruption.

The ultimate joke is on the American public when they actually believe they are voting for someone who shares their beliefs and values.

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
2:45 pm

AmVet – I think she already grew into her looks personally. But that could just be me. I was much too young to really know what was going on during his presidency, but I do remember the scandals (what 10-11 year old boy wouldn’t think that was interesting?). To be honest though, that is all I remember. I didn’t even know til today that Hilary ran for the Dem. nomination in 2000.

Stevie Ray

December 16th, 2011
2:47 pm

GUY,

Those “frank” comments will be spun as he was a victim of fraud etcetera and was erroneously underinformed. Thats the same thing Rahm Emmanuel, Raines, and other cronies will claim…it’s basically an admission that same folks are not accountable in their positions as overseers to a standard of care that is beyond getting paid…the politics surrounding the lack of proper accounting audits will blow the minds of many and is definitely bi-partisan but the bulk of those getting wet are democrats….

Jm

December 16th, 2011
2:48 pm

Democrats increasing fines for automakers for recalls

More big government from democrats

Yep. Obama and democrats are harmless

AmVet - A Happy KwanzChristmakkuh to al!

December 16th, 2011
2:49 pm

(ir)Rational, wow you are a youngster by the standards here!

But no worries, most of us are not ageists!

And to the extent that you are interested in and want to be involved in our system of governance, good on you.

I completely advocate for an empowered citizenry. Regardless of political affiliation or ideology.

Freedom is participation in power. ~Cicero

Grover Norquist was touched by Sandusky

December 16th, 2011
2:51 pm

So, my fellow short neocons – you want to blame barney franks for the housing market, I agree, he does share some blame, but let’s look at the entire picture.

An agreement between the Clinton administration and congressional Republicans, reached during all-night negotiations which concluded in the early hours of October 22, sets the stage for passage of the most sweeping banking deregulation bill in American history, lifting virtually all restraints on the operation of the giant monopolies which dominate the financial system.

The proposed Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999 would do away with restrictions on the integration of banking, insurance and stock trading imposed by the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, one of the central pillars of Roosevelt’s New Deal. Under the old law, banks, brokerages and insurance companies were effectively barred from entering each others’ industries, and investment banking and commercial banking were separated

The chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, Texas Republican Phil Gramm, himself collected more than $1.5 million in cash from the three industries during the last five years: $496,610 from the insurance industry, $760,404 from the securities industry and $407,956 from banks.

Gramm and other extreme-right Republicans saw the opportunity to damage their political opponents among minority businessmen and community groups, who generally support the Democratic Party. Gramm succeeded in inserting two provisions to weaken the CRA, one reducing the frequency of examinations for CRA compliance to once every five years for smaller banks, the other compelling public disclosure of loans made under the program

Jm

December 16th, 2011
2:53 pm

You know, a recall fixes the cars at the cost of the automaker

No need to lob on a quarter billion fine per recall which is what democrats want to do

Do they want a car industry or not? (apparently not)

Paul

December 16th, 2011
2:54 pm

Guy Incognito

“REP. BARNEY FRANK, D-MASS.: “I think this is a case where Fannie and Freddie are fundamentally sound, that they are not in danger of going under.”

Genius.”

So tell us, Guy, if you had read the filing “Fannie told investors in 2007 that it had roughly $4.8 billion worth of subprime loans on its books. The SEC says that Fannie actually had about $43 billion worth of products targeted to borrowers with weak credit.

Freddie said about 11% of its single-family loans were subprime in 2007. The SEC says it was closer to about 18%.

“Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives told the world that their subprime exposure was substantially smaller than it really was,” said Robert Khuzami, SEC’s enforcement director. ”

you would have held a press conference saying you’d read the reports and Freddie/Fannie were in danger of collapse?

Joseph

December 16th, 2011
2:55 pm

Looking good for re-election Jay… LOL….

The poll found that a majority of adults, 52 percent, said Obama should be voted out of office while 43 percent said he deserves a second term. The numbers represent a clear reversal since last May, when 53 percent said Obama should be re-elected while 43 percent said he didn’t deserve four more years.

Paul

December 16th, 2011
2:55 pm

Stevie Ray

“it’s basically an admission that same folks are not accountable in their positions as overseers”

So… what financials should they have looked at to arrive at their conclusions? If not the official filings, what?

Stevie Ray

December 16th, 2011
2:56 pm

BROCEPHUS,

I LOVE THIS ISSUE! Anytime we can get bi-partisan corruption in the headlines we get one step closer to meaningful government reform…heck at the rate we are going, I may see it in my lifetime….opppps, maybe my kids….opppps maybe my grandkids…oppps…

Grover Norquist was touched by Sandusky

December 16th, 2011
2:56 pm

JayB – keep up the good work. I really enjoy that your articles are enforced with facts………….. We got your back!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Remember when President Obama had concentration camps, no one could find them but Glen Beck knew they were out there……..LoL

Peter

December 16th, 2011
2:56 pm

Good stuff Paul…. The Right not wanting more regulation, when obviously it is needed.

That is like saying the GOP is for smaller government, and a balanced budget…but of course the actions prove otherwise.

Guy Incognito

December 16th, 2011
2:57 pm

Paul

You don’t think his boyfriend’s job had anything to do w his blindness? He ignored the alarms of more than a few individuals

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
2:59 pm

jm

Quit whining dude, you’re making yourself look more and more infantile every time you post.

If there’s a billion dollar fine per recall, they don’t have to pay if there is no recall. All it takes is sound engineering. You can’t hire engineers when your country has a one-track mindset on MBA’s. Quit making MBA’s seem like they’re more important than they really are and focus on engineering fields. You wouldn’t hire a CPA to wire your home, so why hire one to design a car?

How quickly the rhetoric changes. First, the government was nationalizing the auto industry. Now, the government is trying to destroy it. Find one story and stick to it. You’re flopping around more than Kerry and Romney combined. :)

Peter

December 16th, 2011
2:59 pm

REP. BARNEY FRANK, D-MASS.: “I think this is a case where Fannie and Freddie are fundamentally sound, that they are not in danger of going under.”

I guess the thought never occurred to the poster, maybe Barney Frank was lied too ?

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:00 pm

AmVet – Yeah, I’m a baby compared to all you geezers. ;)

Stevie Ray

December 16th, 2011
3:00 pm

PAUL,

Audit committees and simple reserve validity tests are readily available to pick up such irregularities in real time. They simply weren’t employed due to the politics and cupability that would accompany same. I should disclose that I was engaged by one of these GSE’s for actuarial work and I must tell you the culture, tone and environment I encountered was so arrogant, entitlement driven, and defined by the most inept business folks I’ve ever encountered…many of them didn’t even understand the mission or organziational format, or what a GSE really was….

Steve - USA

December 16th, 2011
3:00 pm

How could the figures be so far off? Is Fannie/Freddie exempt from independent auditors?

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:00 pm

Stevie Ray

I think we have a much better chance at colonizing the sun when compared to getting sound and meaningful government reform. :)

Peter

December 16th, 2011
3:01 pm

Brosephus…… I guess the Right talks small government, then does the exact opposite.

Talks balanced budget, then does the exact opposite.

But they certainly don’t talk helping American’s in America !

Guy Incognito

December 16th, 2011
3:01 pm

Stevie Ray,

You didn’t have to be Karnak to make that prediction, but kudos anyway

Kamchak

December 16th, 2011
3:01 pm

Normal

December 16th, 2011
3:01 pm

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:00 pm

Watch who you are calling a geezer, whippersnapper! :)

Steve - USA

December 16th, 2011
3:02 pm

More regulation isn’t needed. More people going to jail if they commit fraud is what’s needed. You can have all the regulation in the world but if there is no enforcement than it is useless.

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:02 pm

Yeah, I’m a baby compared to all you geezers.

Who you callin’ a geezer???? :mad:

j/k :lol:
I haven’t hit 40 yet, so you’re not alone.

Paul

December 16th, 2011
3:03 pm

Guy

“You don’t think his boyfriend’s job had anything to do w his blindness?”

No more than Newt’s girlfriends had anything to do with his ethics fine and getting kicked out of his leadership post. Which is to say, it had nothing to do with anything.

” He ignored the alarms of more than a few individuals”

And just who were these individuals who knew better than the SEC filings what the true status was at Freddie/Fannie?

(see if your answer can avoid any reference to your fascination with Frank’s sex life)

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:04 pm

Peter

Shhhhhhhh!!!! You’re gonna spoil the dreams of all the believers. What you’ve said is just like telling a little kid that there’s no Santa.

Paul

December 16th, 2011
3:05 pm

Stevie Ray

“. They simply weren’t employed due to the politics and cupability that would accompany same”

And you know this how?

Back Seater

December 16th, 2011
3:06 pm

Paul,
The left’s love for BF has never dispponited me, either…………..

Paul

December 16th, 2011
3:07 pm

Stevie Ray

So what your saying is, Rep Frank and others on the committee, not just Frank, looked at the available filings but should have known something was falsified, so they could have shifted resources to audit committees to undertake an examination to prove what they knew, but knowing what would be made public, which they just knew was there, they didn’t ask audit committees to investigate because they knew what wasn’t known would be a political embarrassment?

Really?

Whew….

Guy Incognito

December 16th, 2011
3:08 pm

“At a Congressional Hearing in 2003, Rep. Maxine Waters, Democrat of California objected to the proposal of stricter regulations on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac stating,

I have sat through nearly a dozen hearings where, frankly, we were trying to fix something that wasn’t broke. [sic] …These GSEs have more than adequate capital for the business they are in: providing affordable housing. As I mentioned, we should not be making radical or fundamental change… If there is anything to fix or improve, it is the [regulators].”

Sorry, just wanted to add one more quote from the geniuses. Gotta run and coach a bb game

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:08 pm

More regulation isn’t needed. More people going to jail if they commit fraud is what’s needed. You can have all the regulation in the world but if there is no enforcement than it is useless.

So how do you get more enforcement when the current mindset is all about budget cuts? Enforcement is one of the first things out of the window, because it costs more and eats up more of the budget. How do you suggest we increase enforcement?

Guy Incognito

December 16th, 2011
3:10 pm

Paul,

“The plan was an acknowledgment of two things. First, more oversight was necessary for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that have managed to accumulate over 1.5 trillion dollars in outstanding debt – averaging a 20% increase in residential debt per year. And second, the supervisory system in place did not have the tools to deal effectively with the size, scope, and complexity of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Subsequently, the recommendation was staunchly opposed by Congressional Democrats and National Association of Home Builders who thought that tighter regulation of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would reduce their commitment to financing low-income and affordable housing.”

And yes, Newt’s hands are dirty too

Ok, now I’m really out

Paul

December 16th, 2011
3:11 pm

Stevie Ray

And I do not doubt the rest of your post. But to extrapolate from that to what a committee member (just one, mind you) should have known is a bit of a stretch.

Which leads to the thought, that premise is built upon the idea Rep Frank did not do something easily available to protect himself and Freddie/Fannie.

Have you thought, if all this was so obvious, that his Republican counterparts, who hate Freddie/Fannie, would have taken the action you describe in order to sink them?

Kamchak

December 16th, 2011
3:11 pm

Paul 3:07

The message is that there are no “knowns.” There are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say there are things that we now know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we do not know we don’t know.

Steve - USA

December 16th, 2011
3:12 pm

Brosephrus,

We can get rid of the earned income tax credit and use that money for additional enforcement.:)

Jm

December 16th, 2011
3:12 pm

Bro
What you ironically fail to realize is it is the democrats who are indeed flip flopping

First they save the industry, then they try to kill it

That is democrat insanity for you

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:12 pm

Bro – I haven’t hit 30 yet. So, I could be alone?

AmVet - A Happy KwanzChristmakkuh to al!

December 16th, 2011
3:13 pm

Some people do not like the guy, but Al Gore did have a funny line about turning sixty. He said it was OK, because 60 is the new 59.

Speaking of which, I am totally digging this globally warmed December! (grin)

Steve, to your point at 3:02, in 2000, GWB “promised to clean up Wall Street”.

Yet in one of his very first acts as POTUS, he reduced the modest budget increase for an already insanely underfunded and undermanned branch of the SEC that was charged with investigating corporate crime. (I suspect that even then he knew he was gonna need those dollars to “liberate” Iraq.)

Which explains why prosecutions for corporate malfeasance and criminal negligence dropped off the charts during his presidency.

Welcome to the Corporatocracy.

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:14 pm

Normal – Sorry geezer. ;)

Peter

December 16th, 2011
3:18 pm

Brosephus.. Yup kind of like saying Newt is Christian…… after the divorces, and the cheating on the spouse’s. Or lying about the amount of money Freddie and Fannie paid him.

See with religion, one can constantly change your story, and be “reborn” constantly.

But isn’t ……… ” Thou shall not lie”, one of the Commandments ?

Well those Commandments are just talking points for the Right to stir up the simple minded, with their agenda that has nothing to do with helping anyone other then the super Rich.

Amazing how poor folks could even vote for a GOP candidate. but hey not much education in the South, and in allot of Right wing places.

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:18 pm

AmVet – Speak for yourself – 70 in the middle of December blows. I’m dreaming of a white Christmas. Last year was awesome.

Steve - USA

December 16th, 2011
3:19 pm

AmVet,

Then let’s increase the budget. Seriously, Bush was an idiot but we can either fix things or cry about Bush. He doesn’t care, he is rich and happy on his ranch.

Peter

December 16th, 2011
3:19 pm

Jm… First they save the industry, then they try to kill it.

Really ? DO you actually have a point ?

Paul

December 16th, 2011
3:19 pm

Kamchak

I didn’t know that. Now I know. I wonder what else I don’t know? Perhaps I’ll never know. Or when I do know, I’ll know what I did not know!

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:20 pm

Peter – is it really your place to judge whether anyone is or isn’t Christian? I know it isn’t mine, and I’m not sure why it matters even a little bit. But I’m just curious as to why it is yours.

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:24 pm

jm

You’re basing your opinion on “your” thoughts and not theirs. Maybe, they have realized that the best way to get the attention of businesses and businessmen is to hit them where it hurts most, in the wallet. Their actions could mean “you build a good, reliable product and we’ll support you. You build a shoddy product and we’ll make sure you pay for it dearly”.

There’s more than one way to interpret things, and you have more than shown that you are not always right in your interpretations. However, I’ll let you continue to live in the world you’ve created as I’ve always done.

Steve

That sounds fine and good, but I think you’re gonna need more money than that to weed out all the corruption we have going on in this country. When you sit back and look at the corruption we now consider as just the way things are done, you will realize how much of a problem we really face.

(ir)Rational

There’s a few others here in their 20’s, I think.

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:27 pm

Peter

I think it goes beyond just party stuff. I can’t recall any election within the past decade where I haven’t thought about and/or just written someone else’s name in instead of choosing between the candidates offered. Our entire system is corrupt. It isn’t a Republican or Democratic Party thing. It’s pure All-American corruption at it’s finest, and the citizens are being played as complete fools.

AmVet - A Happy KwanzChristmakkuh to al!

December 16th, 2011
3:27 pm

(ir)Rational, all I can say is that giving Georgia Natural Gas less of my money makes me holiday happy!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKDLvbOqT_4

DebbieDoRight

December 16th, 2011
3:28 pm

Grover/Sandusy (LOVE your blog name): Mom’s always told me that you can rob more people with a briefcase than with a gun………….

That reminds me of a Dave Chapelle skit about White collar crime….

http://dailybail.com/home/dave-chappelle-on-white-collar-crime-i-plead-the-fifth-video.html

It’s the First video -

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:30 pm

Bro – That gives me hope, the fact that I’m not alone. So many of my peers could care less about politics and the fate of our nation.

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:33 pm

AmVet – well, when you put it that way, I completely agree. Although my wife seems determined to give them just as much as possible by keeping it unbearably hot in the house.

What are you talking about?

December 16th, 2011
3:35 pm

Hopefully we’ll see Barney and Dodd go to prison.

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:36 pm

(ir)Rational

I’ve offended a few here by stating my opinions regarding the age of those who are currently making decisions. One of the reforms I’d suggest would be to require Congress to balance it’s membership by taking the same factors that we look at in discrimination: age, sex, race, etc… It would be impossible to do such a thing with the current electoral system we have, so it’s nothing but a pipe dream.

What are you talking about?

December 16th, 2011
3:36 pm

” He said it was OK, because 60 is the new 59.”

Wow, that is really funny, Vet. I mean damn, I’ve never heard such a funny joke before.

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:39 pm

Bro – There are certain aspects that I think it definitely bodes well that we require you to wait til a certain age before attaining that job (however, I think that women could probably knock as much as five years off the age requirement over men), cause there is a certain level of maturity needed before you are ready for certain jobs. However, I don’t think there are enough stories about people my age entering politics. And when there are, the stories typically seem to be outrage, or quietly laughing about the 18-30 year old that was pissed about something and was elected mayor or to the city counsel or something.

Common Sense isn't very Common

December 16th, 2011
3:47 pm

Bro – then get off that pipe (dream that is).

:-)

Why not let the SEC keep the fines as an operational fund that way it will have a budget paid for like police depts with confiscated funds.

Peadawg

December 16th, 2011
3:47 pm

“Fannie, Freddie execs next targets for SEC”

Finally….

TaxPayer

December 16th, 2011
3:47 pm

So that’s what a Republican Utopia looks like. And if any don’t carry their own weight, toss ‘em over and let them fend for themselves. :lol:

Jay

December 16th, 2011
3:49 pm

Alex, a little more civility would be appreciated, please.

josef

December 16th, 2011
3:51 pm

(ir)rational

There several of your generation hereabouts…one just chimed in…there’s some benefits to geezerhood…you don’t have to give a sh*t anymore…

Normal

Right you are on question !…

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
3:53 pm

NoCom

I’m about to get that pipe (smokestack) on the grill fired up in a few!!! I think that would be a good idea for funding SEC enforcement. I think it could possibly work for all agencies/departments. If all’s going fine and good, you don’t need enforcement. When somebody intentionally f**ks up, make’em pay dearly. I have no problem with that.

Peter

December 16th, 2011
3:55 pm

(ir)Rational.

Peter – is it really your place to judge whether anyone is or isn’t Christian? I know it isn’t mine, and I’m not sure why it matters even a little bit. But I’m just curious as to why it is yours.

You can call it judging, or just what it is, an observation. Seems the Right does like to use Religion as a “Marketing Tool “.

Doggone/GA

December 16th, 2011
3:57 pm

“I think it could possibly work for all agencies/departments”

and I don’t think it would be workable. With things like appeals and such, it could be YEARS before the agencies would see the money…if they get any at all. We need to fund the agencies regardless, and then put the money they DO get into the general fund to “pay it back”

Sid

December 16th, 2011
3:58 pm

CIVIL fraud? lawsuit? MIGHT have to give back their bonuses? that’s “aggressive enforcement action”? are you serious? granted, given what the SEC’s done to this point (i.e. NOTHING) this does seem like capital punishment by comparison but if that’s their idea of cracking down there really isn’t any hope for this country – we will have crossed the event horizon into a kleptocracy…

(ir)Rational

December 16th, 2011
3:59 pm

Peter – You’re making a moral judgement about someone and trying to sell it as an observation. I’m just saying, you don’t know what is in his heart, and I’m not sure why it matters. I agree, the right does seem to use religion as a marketing tool, which I find abhorrent, but to each their own. I don’t see what it would matter if we had a President who was atheist, Muslim, Catholic, Jewish, Mormon or otherwise as long as he or she didn’t let their superstitions affect the way they preformed their jobs. Same as with any company.

Brosephus

December 16th, 2011
4:03 pm

Doggone

Why put the money back into the General Fund? If it’s to pay back the extra costs of enforcement, then I’m good with that. I would much rather just pay for enforcement anyway and get rid of as much of the corruption as possible. I don’t see that happening though, as most of the corruption comes from those that make the rules, IMHO.

Common Sense isn't very Common

December 16th, 2011
4:07 pm

Doggone – You are correct I didn’t think it through completely. They need budget NOW, but money from fines shouldn’t ALL go into the general fund or they will find their budget reduced in the future (bean counters are unique creatures that live in their dark caves and give out pittances when they choose to).
:-)

Mary Elizabeth

December 16th, 2011
4:11 pm

“I haven’t hit 30 yet.”

“I don’t agree that a society that shares in the expenditures of someone else’s labors is a good thing. I take care of my own first, and others second. And I won’t apologize for it.”

—————————————-

These are statements – from the same blogger – one is statement from this thread, and one is from the previous thread. It do not think that this blogger’s perspective is atypical for his age group. Those under 30 were born when Reagan’s policies were dominant, and when the national consciousness of looking after “my own first” became a national priority.

Aside from this particular blogger, I believe this way of seeing oneself in relation to others has created a national consciousness of greed that has caused CEOs of large corporations, both public and private, as well many average Americans, to value accruing personal wealth at the expense of more humane goals. We are all interconnected whether we see it or not, and we will all go up or down together, whether we see that or not. I remember time in America, prior to 1980, when public service was valued and equal opportunity for all was advanced. When we lose sight of that larger vision for our nation, and when we lose sight of a historical perspective, we diminish not only ourselves, individually, but we diminish the consciousness and the greatness of our nation, as a whole.