Saturday, August 14, 2010

Perfect Time For Congress Reform

Unofficial seal of the United States CongressImage via WikipediaBefore the November election is a perfect time to enact Congress reform. It is enough time. It is about time, don't you think?

Wall Street has been reformed, but the US Congress that made Wall Street bad behavior possible is still the same old, same old. And that is pointing fingers at both the parties.

Charlie Rangel is the Bear Stearns of US Congress. The damage has to be contained this time. The damage has to be localized. This guy has to be isolated and quarantined.

It has been hard for me to read up on his 13 allegations. I have actively tried to avoid doing that. It is like watching crime happen in real time. It is not a good feeling. You can avoid the news articles. But it is near impossible to avoid the headlines. They are all over the place.

Look at some of what this guy has done. He would send a letter on official letter pad to some big, fancy corporation asking them to donate 100,000 dollars to the Charlie Rangel Vanity Endowment Fund and when they did he would quietly put in an earmark in some bill to send 10 million dollars to that corporation. That is every taxpayer's dream money manager. And that is only one of the 13 allegations. One thing that has not even been included in those 13 allegations is how his relatives, friends, associates have been running this network of NGOs. Donating to those NGOs earned you "virtual" currencies in the Rangel empire. Rangel would do you favors if you donated to those NGOs from which Rangel made no profits.

The show on the Hill has started to stink.

The Huffington Post: Reshma Saujani: A New Ethic of Leadership in Broken Washington
Eight House members, from both parties, are currently under investigation for raising money from financial services lobbyists just before voting on the financial reform bill..... independent ethics oversight, curb conflicts of interests, and eliminate the influence of lobbyists. .... Today, members of Congress must police themselves...which is why they don't. ....... At the same time that BP's deep sea drilling permit was under review or the Wall Street reform bill was being negotiated, members of Congress maintained hundreds of millions of dollars in personal investments in the same companies they were in the process of regulating. While peddling poisonous subprime loans, dozens of Congressional members actually betted against the housing market prior to the 2008 crash and their investments outperformed the market by over 12 percent....... In 2009 alone, more than 13,000 registered lobbyists spent more than $3.5 billion influencing elected officials on legislation, the highest amount ever recorded...... I have not taken a penny of special interest corporate PAC money during my campaign, and I believe all PAC contributions should be banned. It is time for a new system of publically financed campaigns Democrat Using Rangel Against Democrat
Maloney wrote a $2,500 check to Rangel’s re-election campaign ..... Maloney has chosen to donate to an elected official facing a 13 count ethics investigation — and she is urging Maloney to reconsider.
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