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Where Are Obama’s ‘Financial Reforms’?

From an artfully spinning Associated Press:

Obama touts Wall St. changes on Lehman anniversary

By Ben Feller, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON – Pushing Congress to act on proposed financial regulations, President Barack Obama is going to the heart of Wall Street on the first anniversary of Lehman Brothers’ collapse to outline changes needed to prevent a future crisis like the one that sent the global economy into a tailspin last year.

Obama has called on Congress to pass a sweeping overhaul of how financial institutions behave but has seen slower-than-sought action. Administration officials said the president will use Lehman Brothers as a starting point to again decry a hands-off approach from Washington that enabled irresponsible lending that sent the nation’s largest financial institutions to the brink of collapse and the larger economy to the edge.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said the president would focus on "the need to take the next series of steps in financial regulatory reform" — in other words: Congress, stop stalling and get it done.

The speech comes as the same banks that received tens of billions of taxpayer dollars last year to stay afloat are again betting on the same bonds, commodities and exotic financial products that landed them in trouble.

There is, however, nothing Obama or Washington can do without Congress’ action.

Proposals to better monitor the financial system and to police the products banks sell to consumers have been opposed by lobbyists, lawmakers and turf-protecting regulators. Mergers and sales of banks have consolidated lending power in even few hands. And those large firms still bet far more than the capital they have on hand.

Yet regulations have not moved. Much of the legislative motivation in Washington has been consumed by the contentious debate over changes to the health care system. Government intervention into private automakers such as General Motors have left lawmakers skittish to move further into corporate board rooms. And it’s not as if another collapse is obviously imminent…

Obama has sought tougher capital requirements for banks, arguing that banks’ buying of exotic financial products without keeping enough cash on reserve was a key cause of the crisis. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has urged the Group of 20 nations to agree on new capital levels by the end of 2010 and put them in place two years later.

The administration also has proposed increased transparency of markets in which banks trade the most complex — and potentially risky — financial products. Obama’s broad plan also would give the Fed new oversight powers and impose conditions designed to discourage companies from getting too big.

Sen. Chris Dodd, the Democratic chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, is leading the push for those new rules and his aides hope to have legislation together before the year’s end. Already they have conducted hearings on the source of the problem and how best to prevent another.

But one major component of the Obama plan — creating an agency to oversee marketing financial products to consumers — faces a tough road to become a law. Industry lobbying against it and other proposed financial rules has been fierce and the president’s fellow Democrats have been slow to take up the cause.

Notice how misleading the headline is. It makes it sound like there have been changes since the Lehman Brothers debacle a year ago, thanks to Mr. Obama.

But as the article itself makes clear, there have been no changes whatsoever.

Which is somewhat surprising, since we have been regularly told that Mr. Obama’s brilliant financial reforms have brought us back from the brink of disaster and saved capitalism in general.

What a shock to hear that nothing has changed.

As the article notes Mr. Obama may have sought financial reforms since taking office, but none of them have come into being.

Weirdly, the AP faults Congress. Even though Mr. Obama doesn’t seem to be reluctant to bypass the legislative process (and the Constitution) when it suits his agenda.

But if the AP doesn’t bring up Congress, how is it going to lay the ultimate blame the evil lobbyists of Big Finance?

Still, we do love the idea of Mr. Dodd taking the lead and pushing through these new rules.

It really shows just how serious the Democrats are about rooting out financial corruption.

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, September 14th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

6 Responses to “Where Are Obama’s ‘Financial Reforms’?”

  1. cerberus6 says:

    In the mean time the Bamster is starting a trade war with Chine over tire imports at a time when we need them (China) more than they need us…to hold our debt and as they are becoming a growing market for American products. Sounds like our Agriculture and Auto are going to take the initial backlash.

    Taking a shot at Wall Street right now is either misdirection or ineptitude. Is this a shakedown of Wall Street for more support? Keep threatening them with action, but keep Congress on a short leash?

    My question is where is George Soros positioning his money on these two moves by the administration?

  2. proreason says:

    What a joke.

    The London Office of AIG (developed the derivatives that increased the finacial risk of the bad mortgages a hundred-fold) was crawling with regulators when Soros and Goldman Sachs pricked the Mortgages-for-Deadbeats bubble and destroyed the world’s economy.

    The regulators had encouraged the derivatives and “regulated” them every step of the way.

    The underllying causes of the crises were instigated, fueled and protected by governments in the US and Europe. Private business created the gasoline for the fire (Derivatives) at the behest of the governments and under the thumb of the governments.

    The single action that was the sole result of private actions was when Soros and Goldman Sachs decided to cause a crisis by killing Lehman Brothers after McCain took the lead in the Gallup poll Sept 8, 2008. And they did that as the puppet-masters of the Fascist Fuhrer Obama.

    Two thing need to be regulated:
    1. Government
    2. Market manipulators

  3. MinnesotaRush says:

    If this wasn’t such a display of grandiosity and hypocrisy, I’d be roflmao.

    “Pushing Congress to act on proposed financial regulations, President Barack Obama is going to the heart of Wall Street on the first anniversary of Lehman Brothers’ collapse to outline changes needed to prevent a future crisis like the one that sent the global economy into a tailspin last year.”

    All from a guy who couldn’t balance a checkbook or manage his own credit.

    Good grief!!!

  4. Reality Bytes says:

    Barack Obama: The Audacity of This Dope!

    Seems Obama’syears of drug use has caught up with him. While berating Wall Street Investment Firms (an Acorn code for “JEWS”), he completely left out the collapse of the GSE’s, Fannie, Freddie & Indy Mac, which as late as last July, Rep. Barney “Fudd” Frank was saying he didn’t see a problem with them.



  5. Liberals Demise says:


  6. suek says:

    It doesn’t make any difference _how_ many laws you make – if you don’t enforce them, they’re pointless.


    If when you’re on this site, you do a search for “FRAUD” and you’ll come up with more than you want…

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