Headline Of the Year

Lehman Managers Portrayed as Irresponsible

No kidding. Loved this:

One Lehman document among thousands reviewed by the House committee showed that four days before the bank filed for bankruptcy protection, Lehman’s compensation committee was asked to grant $20 million in “special payments” for three executives who were leaving, Mr. Waxman said. An e-mail exchange recommending a delay in bonus payments was apparently brushed aside.

Another document showed that executives were warned in a January 2008 meeting that the company was facing liquidity problems. Yet the firm moved forward with capital outlays, including $5 billion in bonuses, $4 billion in shares and $750,000 in dividend payments between 2007 and the firm’s bankruptcy filing on Sept. 15.

Awesome.








Bloodsport

This video is disturbing. But know that Sarah Palin stongly endorses this despicable practice:

via Andrew








The Bailout to Nowhere

I guess the credit crisis isn’t that bad after all, because according to this report, Wall Street is about to say “Thanks, but no thanks” to the bailout:

Fears are mounting that many Wall Street banks and financial firms will refuse to participate in the US government’s $700bn bail-out package, leaving global markets and world economies in a perilous state for months to come.

‘There is a growing feeling that banks … might instead decide to tough it out,’ said Thomas Caldwell, chairman and CEO of Caldwell Financial, a $1bn-plus fund manager.

For the past two weeks all eyes in the market have been focused on US Congress and its attempts to pass Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson’s bail-out package – a bill to allow the US government to buy up to $700bn of toxic mortgage-related assets from American banks, which would in theory free the credit markets and set the gears of global commerce spinning once more.

Why might they decide to let things go down the tube rather than take the help? According to the story, the same greed that helped get us into this position:

But Wall Street analysts, believe the addition of so many terms to the bill might deter potential participants.

One of the least attractive elements is a section designed to curb executive pay at banks that participate in the bail-out package. These include limiting stock-related pay and banning ‘golden parachutes’ for executives.

‘I think this hodge-podge of regulations and rules will be enough to put many [chief executives] off participating,’ Caldwell said.

Sources close to Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch indicated the banks might choose not to participate in the bail-out as there is a growing view on Wall Street that the market may be bottoming out.

Charming. But, on the upside, if the market is bottoming out and they don’t need to take taxpayer money, I support it. If they are wrong, and bring about financial armageddon due to sheer greed, well, at least we know who to blame.

We’ll just file this under “country first.” I pray to the all-knowing FSM that either this report is wrong or Wall Street is right about the market having already bottomed out.








OJ To The Big House

OJ was found guilty on thirteen counts:

O. J. Simpson was found guilty late Friday on all 12 counts stemming from a confrontation in a hotel room last year, including armed robbery and kidnapping.

The verdict, which comes 13 years to the day after Mr. Simpson was acquitted in the highly publicized murders of his ex-wife and her friend, concluded a four-week trial that many have seen as a proxy for those unsatisfied by that 1995 outcome.

Mr. Simpson now faces 15 years to life for the kidnapping charge as well as a minimum of at least an additional 10 years in prison on the other charges. His attorney, Yale Galanter, said he would appeal.

After the verdicts were read, the judge revoked the bail for Mr. Simpson, a Heisman Trophy winner and an inductee in the National Football Hall of Fame. As his sister, Carmelita, wept and fainted in the front row, he was led away in handcuffs. Mr. Simpson is scheduled to be sentenced on Dec. 5.

Two thoughts:

First, His children now have a dead mother and their father, her murderer, will now die in jail. Anyone who would subject his children to that is subhuman.

Second, I can only hope that this will give the Brown and Goldman families some sense of justice. The last time I saw Fred Goldman on television, he was a snarling, bitter, angry man, and it was clear that the murder of his son had consumed him. Maybe this will give him some peace of mind.

Consider this your one and only post on the matter.








Country First, My Ass

For days, it has been obvious what the GOP dream scenario was- have the bailout pass, but with predominantly Democratic support, dub it the the Bush/Pelosi/Reid/Obama bailout, and then run against it. This is the plan that Gingrich and Ruffini and the other next generation Republicans have been salivating over. This was their big chance. Oops:

The Republican National Committee’s new advertisement critical of the the Wall Street “bailout” was produced and sent to television stations in key states before the package failed, officials at two stations said.

“Wall Street Squanders our money. And Washington is forced to bail them out with — you guessed it — our money. Can it get any worse?” asks the ad’s narrator, as the words “BAILOUT WITH OUR MONEY” cross the screen. (The answer: Obama’s plans would make it worse.)

The ad, however, seems to assume that it can safely attack a successful plan. And the reason may be the timing: Though it started airing this morning, the spot was released to stations yesterday morning, ad executives at stations in Michigan and Pennsylvania said.

Kae Buck of WLNS in Lansing said her station received the at at 7:55 a.m. Monday. Luanne Russell of Pittsburgh’s WTAE said her station received it at 10:49 Monday morning.

Got it? While the Republican Leadership was shaking hands and allegedly rallying their troops to vote for the plan, they were already cutting ads to bash the Democrats. This is why only Republicans in safe seats and leadership positions voted for it. Yesterday, they went out and blamed Pelosi for injecting partisanship into the process, causing the bill to fail, when actually they wanted it to pass so they could… use it against the Democrats. And they were not even hiding it- this was what many online (again, go read the Next Right morons) had openly said they should do, and the commercials were ready to bash the Democrats for passing the plan.

Except the plan failed. And the Republicans are caught red-handed, and will pay the price should things melt down. Not that half the GOP base or the Republican Study Group care- half of them probably think an economic disaster is an alternate route to the Rapture. Not to mention, think of the side benefits- I mean, after all, if everyone is broke, no one can afford contraception or Demon Rum.

The only thing you can count on in politics these days is the sure-fire bet that when the chips are down, the Republicans always, always always put themselves first. These guys need a solid two decades in the minority.



Blink

Palin:

“I answered him yes,” Ms. Palin said, “because I have the confidence in that readiness and knowing that you can’t blink, you have to be wired in a way of being so committed to the mission, the mission that we’re on, reform of this country and victory in the war, you can’t blink. So I didn’t blink then even when asked to run as his running mate.”

McCain:

The McCain campaign is resuming all activities and the Senator will travel to the debate this afternoon. Following the debate, he will return to Washington to ensure that all voices and interests are represented in the final agreement, especially those of taxpayers and homeowners.

Blink. Or, if you will, Marshall’s Bitch-Slap Theory of Politics backfired on McCain. McCain set an ultimatum, Obama told him to piss off.

Such a bunch of tossers. I really do not know what it is that Obama does, whether he has some sort of amazing kung-fu, but he just drives his opposition insane. Now granted, the folks in the McCain campaign were sort of unhinged to begin with, but they are in full meltdown mode right now. The McCain campaign right now reminds of the Clinton campaign in its death throes, when surrogates like Geraldine Ferraro were out there making an ass out of themselves on a daily basis and Hillary was running her White People Won’t Vote For Him Tour and bringing up RFK and the like. They are just sort of running around doing random crazy shit, hoping it works. Monday it was a full frontal assault on the media, Wednesday it was “suspending” the campaign, and who knows what today will bring.

Something Obama does just drives his opposition into madness. I hope he is able to push McCain into a full on eruption tonight.

The other question- what will be their shenanigans to get Palin out of her debate next week, because believe me, they are TERRIFIED? If I were a betting man, I would bet a family emergency. Who could fault a mom for skipping the debate to tend to the kids? Maybe some urgent issue that needs her attention in Alaska. Putin stages some troops in the Aleutian islands and nothing stands between freedom and the Russian horde but Sarah Palin and the 4,000 brave members of the national guard?



Country First


Photo credit- The Daily Shocker

I have to say, it is pretty awesome watching the shitbirds who helped get us into this mess use the negotiations to help stave the crisis (assuming a bailout is needed) for political gain. It is like they simply don’t give a shit about anything but power.

Memo to Democrats- Walk away. John McCain is not there to work on a bipartisan solution. Here is there for himself. You have walked into a room where there is a plastic sheet on the floor and the curtains drawn, yet there has been no sound of gunfire yet. WALK. AWAY.

*** Update ***

Now, with video:

*** Update #2 ***

So what is the play? Will they continue to bog the negotiations until afternoon tomorrow? WaMu failed, and the markets are going to keep applying pressure to congress. Look for the market to tank tomorrow. Then the GOP can ride McCain in on his white horse in the afternoon?

Assholes.