Quotes of the day

posted at 8:31 pm on November 13, 2011 by Allahpundit

“Members of Congress have bought stock in companies while laws that could affect those companies were being debated in the House or Senate, the CBS news program ’60 Minutes’ said on its website.

“The program’s correspondent, Steve Kroft, at news conferences on Nov. 3 asked Representative Nancy Pelosi, a California Democrat, and Representative John Boehner, an Ohio Republican, about stock purchases, according to a report today in the San Francisco Chronicle, which is published in Pelosi’s district…

“Boehner, the speaker of the House, said he didn’t make day- to-day decisions about stock purchases and hasn’t ‘for years.’ Pelosi, former speaker of the House, said it was ‘a false premise’ that she would act legislatively on the basis of an investment, according to videos posted on the Breitbart.tv website.”

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“Laws against insider trading – making stock bets based on information the public doesn’t have – do not apply to Congress. Studies have shown that stock portfolios on Capitol Hill outperform the market. Legislation that would ban insider trading by members and staffers has languished…

“Several studies have shown that members of Congress and their staffs do better in the stock market than the public. A 2011 study by four university researchers found that a portfolio that mirrored stock purchases by House members from 1985 to 2001 beat the market by 6 percent a year. The same authors found that senators beat the market by 12.3 percent from 1993 to 1998.

“The Wall Street Journal reported a year ago that in 2008 and 2009 at least 72 congressional aides traded shares of companies that their bosses helped oversee. The staff interviewed included a Pelosi aide who said her husband made the trades based on newspaper reports and that she knew nothing about them.”

***

“Pelosi received her Visa IPO almost two weeks after a potentially damaging piece of legislation for Visa, the Credit Card Fair Fee Act, had been introduced in the House. If passed, the bill would have cut into Visa’s profits substantially by lowering so-called ‘interchange fees,’ the 1% to 3% charge retailers pay Visa when customers use Visa cards for purchases. Interchange fees are a critical source of revenue for the four credit card companies–$48 billion in 2008, to be exact…

“Despite broad public support for the bill—77% in one study—Pelosi saw to it that the bill never made it to the House floor…

“Pelosi eventually supported something called the Credit Card Reform Act. Curiously, the all-important interchange fees went untouched by that legislation. Instead, the bill stated that the interchange fee issue should simply be ‘studied.’ The bill’s other measures would not affect Visa but rather its client banks. In short, the Credit Card Reform Act ensured that Visa and the other credit card companies dodged a potentially costly bullet.”

***

“The so-called 1705 Loan Guarantee Program and the 1603 Grant Program channeled billions of dollars to all sorts of energy companies. The grants were earmarked for alternative-fuel and green-power projects, so it would not be a surprise to learn that those industries were led by liberals. Furthermore, these were highly competitive grant and loan programs—not usually a hallmark of cronyism. Often fewer than 10 percent of applicants were deemed worthy.

“Nevertheless, a large proportion of the winners were companies with Obama-campaign connections. Indeed, at least 10 members of Obama’s finance committee and more than a dozen of his campaign bundlers were big winners in getting your money. At the same time, several politicians who supported Obama managed to strike gold by launching alternative-energy companies and obtaining grants. How much did they get? According to the Department of Energy’s own numbers … a lot. In the 1705 government-backed-loan program, for example, $16.4 billion of the $20.5 billion in loans granted as of Sept. 15 went to companies either run by or primarily owned by Obama financial backers—individuals who were bundlers, members of Obama’s National Finance Committee, or large donors to the Democratic Party. The grant and guaranteed-loan recipients were early backers of Obama before he ran for president, people who continued to give to his campaigns and exclusively to the Democratic Party in the years leading up to 2008. Their political largesse is probably the best investment they ever made in alternative energy. It brought them returns many times over.

“These government grants and loan guarantees not only provided access to taxpayer capital. They also served as a seal of approval from the federal government. Taxpayer money creates what investors call a ‘halo effect,’ in which a young, unprofitable company is suddenly seen to have a glowing future. The plan is simple. Invest some money, secure taxpayer grants and loans, go public, and then cash out. In just one small example, a company called Amyris Biotechnologies received a $24 million DOE grant to build a pilot plant to use altered yeast to turn sugar into hydrocarbons. The investors included several Obama bundlers and fundraisers. With federal money in hand, Amyris went public with an IPO the following year, raising $85 million. Kleiner Perkins, a firm that boasts Obama financier John Doerr and former vice president Al Gore as partners, found its $16 million investment was now worth $69 million. It’s not clear how the other investors did. Amyris continues to lose money. Meanwhile, the $24 million grant created 40 jobs, according to the government website recovery.gov.”

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Comment pages: 1 2

bmowell on November 14, 2011 at 1:23 AM

Well maybe we have some agreement to the extent that after 9/11 I felt the strategic priority should have been stopping Pakistan’s nuclear program. Instead we jumped into two politically unsustainable 100 years proxy wars for some reason. Even while we set ourselves up for eventual defeat in Afghanistan we were paying Pakistan billions in aid which they used to build up their nuclear arsenal.

The way to win Afghanistan is to win Pakistan and Iran, but it should have been done after 9/11 when the American public would have supported it and, more importantly, before Pakistan had had so many years to build nukes.

FloatingRock on November 14, 2011 at 1:53 AM

Actually there is another way to win Afghanistan, we can use technology and deadly force to seal it’s border and cut off its neighbors influence. There are economical ways to accomplish the task but I don’t think our open-borders ruling class would appreciate having an effective border control system in our toolbox.

FloatingRock on November 14, 2011 at 2:02 AM

Ooooh, I’m shocked! This is horrrrrible!

*yawn*

Use of Tax-Exempt Groups Integral to Political Strategy

By Charles R. Babcock
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, January 7 1997; Page A01

The heart of the ethics committee case against House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) involves his use of charitable organizations to subsidize his partisan political activities — a practice he suggests he could have avoided had he consulted a lawyer and not been so “naive” about the intricacies of the tax code.

But over the years Gingrich and his top advisers have tried repeatedly to use tax-deductible donations to help promote their political goals, a review of his record shows. Indeed, the availability of groups that could take tax-deductible donations was integral to his ultimately successful plan to wrest control of the House from the Democrats.

“Gingrich has a long history of skirting the edge of tax-exempt law for political activity,” said Ellen Miller, outgoing director of the Center for Responsive Politics, which produced a report on the subject in 1987.

Gingrich was in a position to know the dangers of mixing tax-deductible dollars and politics as long ago as the late 1980s, when the Internal Revenue Service took the unusual step of denying a tax exemption requested by the American Campaign Academy, a group formed by some Gingrich advisers to train political operatives. One of those who set up the academy, Joseph Gaylord, went on to become Gingrich’s top political lieutenant in the period covered by the ethics charges.

In a 1989 ruling, a U.S. Tax Court judge upheld the IRS, saying that the academy was partisan because it served “the private interests of Republican party entities rather than public interests exclusively.”

John the Libertarian on November 14, 2011 at 3:05 AM

Someone should make the fight against crony capitalism their election platform…

the_nile on November 14, 2011 at 4:48 AM

drain the swamp!

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 6:00 AM

It sounds like something we should demand as a campaign promise from anyone we vote for.

csdeven on November 14, 2011 at 6:02 AM

OT:major garret praising major garrett on the debate right now on MJ

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 6:03 AM

Man, I’ll bet Martha Stewart’s pissed.

jix on November 14, 2011 at 6:08 AM

cbs cherry picks scandal

of course, expect nothing less…

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 6:20 AM

OT:major garret praising major garrett on the debate right now on MJ

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 6:03 AM

Hilarious. I saw that too. According to Major, he and Pelley agree that they were totally awesome.

That said, Major came across as a dufus this morning with his use of the “word” comfortability. Sorry, I’m not accepting that coinage.

BuckeyeSam on November 14, 2011 at 6:31 AM

BuckeyeSam on November 14, 2011 at 6:31 AM

yes he did….

he fits right into the msdnc code

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 6:41 AM

O/T: Obama resumes his World Apology Tour.

kingsjester on November 14, 2011 at 6:58 AM

O/T
====

Liberation-1
Occupation-0
============

Tea Party Fights Back:
**********************

#OccupyOrlando Forcibly Removed From Sheriff Joe Arpaio Event
Added: 1 day ago Occurred On: Nov-13-2011
******************************************

WHOOOP WHOOOP!!! time to take out the LIBERAL TRASH!! hope they immediately washed their hands with disinfectant soap. LIBERAL SKANKS are host to many liberal deadly diseases.

Former liberal activist/turned tea party conservative Brandon Darby and Sheriff Joe Arpaio were featured speakers at the Choose Liberty 2012 event sponsored by the Eastern Orlando Tea Party. As Sheriff Arpaio took the podium, Darby called security over to point out Occupy Orlando activists where in the audience of the private event preparing to cause a disruption. When the activists tried to interfere with Arpaio’s right to speak and the tea party’s right to peaceably assemble, Darby and Chad Biddinger of Libertylink.com escorted the trespassers out in an emphatic way.
—————————————————————-

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=5bd_1321179372

canopfor on November 14, 2011 at 6:59 AM

O/T: Obama resumes his World Apology Tour.

kingsjester on November 14, 2011 at 6:58 AM

You know, I was gonna read that, but I’ve gotten a bit lazy or somethin’.

coldwarrior on November 14, 2011 at 7:01 AM

drain the swamp!

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 6:00 AM

Wasn’t that Pelosi’s promise some time back? Hmmmm….

chai on November 14, 2011 at 7:01 AM

Antidote: Palin

WordsMatter on November 14, 2011 at 7:16 AM

If you can’t get them directly, find out who their tools were to do the trades and RICO the bunch of them. Once you have people conspiring to defraud the public to their own betterment through these means then it goes beyond just the onsies-twosies and into the ‘how many people were involved in this’ question.

Not that I expect Holder to do anything like that… but there are other legal venues to get this started. And once the lid starts to come off the can of worms you will find it full, to the brim, of its contents.

ajacksonian on November 14, 2011 at 7:22 AM

If the GOP Candidates don’t go NUTS about this comment from Harper about Obamas decision….

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.93c1b5af9b6cb71a17bf389563809eb2.671&show_article=1

NOTHING shows what he’s doing to the US (and to private sector job creation) than this.

PappyD61 on November 14, 2011 at 7:22 AM

Chai, yeah I stole it from her

Figured we can do a better job than her

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 7:23 AM

Good one Canopfor!

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 7:24 AM

Now look at this Keystone XL decision and tell me he is NOT the DOTUS who’s sole purpose is to bring this country down and to facilitate the rise of China?

J-O-B-S!!!………..,.,,FOR CHINA!!!

PappyD61 on November 14, 2011 at 7:27 AM

Good one KJ, you think he’ll sell t-shirts?

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 7:28 AM

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 7:28 AM

Perhaps. It’s a nine day tour.

kingsjester on November 14, 2011 at 7:33 AM

Canada taking care of Canada…after the US told them to piss off…

And who can blame them?

Thank you, Prezdit Obama, you are truly the most wonderful prezdit we ever had.

Putz.

coldwarrior on November 14, 2011 at 7:34 AM

OT: News is Larry Sinclair was hit by a car last night and is dead. Obama is doing some spring cleaning for the election. Expect Vera Baker to overdose on pills.

andy85719 on November 14, 2011 at 7:40 AM

cbs cherry picks scandal

of course, expect nothing less…

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 6:20 AM

I see a little bit of good in this partisan piece. Hopefully, under the scold of those wily Republican Congress critters need to be stopped frm participating in insider trading, the Democrats will also be stopped from the practice. Any law that applies to any ordinary citizen should apply to Congresss.

Fallon on November 14, 2011 at 8:01 AM

Hey Occupy Wall Street YOUR IN THE WRONG PLACE!

ctmom on November 14, 2011 at 8:13 AM

Hopefully fallon, just frustrating that they would focus more on the gop

cmsinaz on November 14, 2011 at 8:22 AM

If the crooks in congress didn’t find it so profitable to be in office, they might find another line of work. Nothing like news of a politicians self serving appearance of impropriety to start the day off.

Kissmygrits on November 14, 2011 at 8:24 AM

But of course term limits isn’t the answer. We would lose too many “good” politicians.

Extrafishy on November 14, 2011 at 9:10 AM

These stories are so convoluted with monetary amounts I can’t conceive of and inside baseball terms that I don’t understand. Add to that, that the press would indicate both sides are guilty and they are the only ones who can “fix” it and there is little wonder that we neither trust or approve of our “leaders”. Completely depressing.

Extrafishy on November 14, 2011 at 9:10 AM

You have the availability of term limits on every election.

http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=266&dat=19950522&id=CPErAAAAIBAJ&sjid=BmoFAAAAIBAJ&pg=1664,1988546

Cindy Munford on November 14, 2011 at 9:24 AM

The 99% should occupy the offices of these scum and get some retribution.

Kuffar on November 14, 2011 at 10:30 AM

I didn’t watch the 60 Minutes piece because you knew it had to be a hatchet job on republicans. I only saw a snippet of it, and sure enough, it was all republican congressmen and women indulging in the trade.

Once again, the republicans in response will sit on their hands and let the gullible digest what CBS put out, instead of countering it.

The whole process sucks for both parties to have those advantages, but c’mon repubs…..stand up for yourselves for a change.

stacman on November 14, 2011 at 11:42 AM

Comment pages: 1 2