Sunday, April 26, 2009

Bayh's Anti-Obama Bloc Teaming Up With Republicans At Behest Of Banksters To Stop Foreclosure Assistance


David Sirota made an ironic point last week about banks bewailing having to pay a prepayment penalty.
First, the banks: You know how it has become standard procedure for the vultures in the banking industry to try to fleece you with so-called "prepayment penalties" if you pay back your mortgage earlier than they want you to pay it back? And you know how many banks charge excessively high interest rates? Well, now, according to the Wall Street Journal, the same banking industry is claiming the federal government is trying to charge excessive interest rates via a "prepayment penalty" when the banks pay back their bailout funds and  - and that banking industry is actually complaining about the situation.

Irony on irony, David missed the fact that the worthless banksters are using taxpayer bailout money to lobby members of Congress whom they routinely bribe with immense campaign "contributions" ($2.2 billion since 1990) to let them off the hook when it comes to living up to their end of the deal.

And as long as we're piling on the irony, imagine my disappointment when Senate Banking Committee member Jon Tester (D-MT) started behaving very much like the crooked reactionary he replaced in 2006, Conrad Burns, by coming out against the bankruptcy legislation that seeks to keep homeowners from being foreclosed on. "I just think a deal's a deal. I have a lot of empathy for folks who tend to get led astray, but I just think it's going to create some problems-- pretty obvious, actually. I don't have to list them. I'm generally opposed. I don't think it works well." The banksters must be laughing their asses off. And we find out that Jon Tester is no Gary Peters (D-MI), the courageous member of the House Financial Services Committee who threw their "deal's a deal" bullshit back into the faces of the contemptible banksters and their congressional protectors:
“In my Congressional district in Michigan, there are thousands of UAW employees who have employment contracts, and they’ve been told they need to renegotiate those contracts and make concessions to justify taxpayer investments. There are thousands of white collar employees with employment contracts who have forgone promised bonuses and benefits and have taken pay cuts in order to save the companies they work for. People are sick of this double standard where working class and middle class workers are treated differently than the financial industry executives.”

I don't understand why members of the Banking Committee are allowed to take blatant-- if legalized-- bribes from the banksters. By the standards of the banksters, Tester didn't get much loot from them, but, even so $73,765 is nothing to sneeze at, which is what the banksters gave him last year. No committee members should be allowed to vote on this kind of legislation if they accept "contributions" from the industries they are responsible for overseeing. That would make voting a lot easier, especially on the corrupt Senate Banking Committee. These were the payoff for 2008 for each member:
Chris Dodd (D-CT), Chairman- $6,031,918
Jack Reed (D-RI)- $1,120,655
Tim Johnson (D-SD)- $864,318
Richard Shelby (R-AL)- $567,899
Bob Corker (R-TN)- $432,558
Mel Martinez (R-FL)- $425,100
Robert Menendez (D-NJ)- $409,050
Jim DeMint (R-SC)- $346,418
Mike Crapo (R-ID)- $255,685
Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX)- $227,529
Sherrod Brown (D-OH)- $223,369
Robert Bennett (R-UT)- $222,349
David Diapers Vitter (R-LA)- $194,350
Jim Bunning (R-KY)- $123,262
Jon Tester (D-MT)- $73,765
Chuck Schumer (D-NY)- $43,800
Daniel Akaka (D-HI)- $35,000
Evan Bayh (D-IN)- $10,950
John Warner (D-VA)- $6,950

So that means the only members who should be permitted to vote are Herb Kohl (D-MN), Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Mike Johanns (R-NE) since the three of them-- and only the three of them-- ran for election and didn't accept any money from banksters. They're the only ones not financially compromised by organizations like, for example, the National Association of Federal Credit unions which voted unanimously last Tuesday to oppose the proposal, which would allow bankruptcy judges to reduce mortgage principle and interest rates for certain distressed homeowners.

CREW has done a report on one of the most repulsive varieties of banksters, the payday lenders and their efforts to gain influence with Congress. The report shows that "the payday loan industry is following the familiar path already cleared by other industries suddenly confronted with congressional oversight.  Payday lenders have joined the ranks of defense contractors, investment funds and others who influence the legislative process through lavish political contributions, expensive PR campaigns, and strategic lobbying." The chart below shows the most perps from the latest election cycle:

Meanwhile, Matt Renner reports at Truthout that a "handful of Democratic senators have joined with Republicans and industry lobbyists to oppose the measure, stalling the bill's progress." Thursday night the Bayh anti-Obama bloc voted with the Republicans to kill the president's cap and trade approach to cleaning up the environment and combating climate change. Apparently Bayh and his treacherous followers-- what Rachel Maddow dubbed the Conservadems intend to collaborate with the Republicans to wreck the change agenda. The bill Tester declared his opposition to, judicial loan modification, or "cram down" provision of S. 61 - the Helping Families Save Their Homes in Bankruptcy Act of 2009 - would empower bankruptcy judges to adjust a borrower's mortgage during bankruptcy proceedings. Currently, a bankruptcy judge can change the terms of other debts such as mortgages on vacation homes, liens on boats and credit card debt, but cannot touch primary residence mortgages. What Tester and the other Conservadems oppose is ordinary working families getting a break for a change. I expect it from a swine like Lincoln, Nelson or Bayh but for Tester to throw his lot in with these reactionary creeps is a real blow.
According to consumer advocacy groups, the judicial loan modification power would compel banks and their middlemen to work with borrowers to adjust unsustainable mortgages before bankruptcy and would help to reduce the growing wave of foreclosures sweeping the country.

I wonder how long it will be before ads like this one that was launched against filthy Blue Dog Marion Berry-- by Democrats-- will be running against senators like Tester, Lincoln and other Democrats who have gone over to the Dark Side:

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At 12:52 PM, Anonymous Balakirev said...

"I wonder how long it will be before ads like this one that was launched against filthy Blue Dog Marion Berry-- by Democrats-- will be running against senators like Tester, Lincoln and other Democrats who have gone over to the Dark Side:"

Wouldn't that be great? But from experience it's much, much harder to dislodge Blue Dogs than Rethugs, because of lockstep loyalty. I don't think we can expect to see anything done by the official, send-your-money-to-us Dem organizations in this regard. But if you guys know otherwise, please do let me know. I'd be happy to invest in such ads.

At 2:49 PM, Anonymous me said...

Getting rid of phony "Democrats" has to be our top priority.

At 6:20 AM, Anonymous Balakirev said...

Yes, but how do we organize ourselves to accomplish this successfully on a federal level, as opposed to attacking the problem piecemeal? Remember, the folks in office have everything on their side, including national organizations and PACs with plenty of cash.


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