Posted tagged ‘Congress’

Bernanke’s Secret Plan To Raise Rates Too Late

November 4, 2009

Business Insider’s Henry Blodgett explains:

Explainer: Bernanke’s Secret Plan To Raise Rates Too Late (3 min):

Why is Ben Bernanke being so slow to start talking about raising rates, much less start raising them?  Because he has a secret plan that he can’t talk about.

What’s Ben’s secret plan?

Intentionally keep rates too low for too long, thus encouraging uncomfortably high inflation.

Why would Ben want that when he keeps talking about the importance of managing inflation?

Two reasons:

  • Faster economic growth, which leads to more jobs, fewer angry constituents, and a Congress that’s happier with Ben Bernanke
  • Faster erosion of the real value of our debts.  Consumers and the government are drowning under a massive debt load.  One way to make paying off this debt easier is to make the dollars it is denominated in worth less.  Bernanke will try to hasten this process as much as possible, taking it right to the point where our creditor China is mad as hell–but not quite to the point where China actually stops lending to us.

Click for video.

Constituents? Happier Congress? But I thought the whole argument against a full audit of the Fed is that it is supposed to be independent of politics. So which is it?

“Consumers and the government are drowning under a massive debt load. One way to make paying off this debt easier is to make the dollars it is denominated in worth less.”

That works for government and the biggest of the TBTF bankers (GS, JPM) because the dollars aren’t really devalued until they are released into the economy at large. By the time they reach the consumer, the prices of everything consumers might buy have already risen in response to the inflated money supply.

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Ron Paul: Important News on Audit the Fed

October 31, 2009

Mel Watt – Fed shill, enemy of truth.

bernakewattcopy-1

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=114624

Further investigation through OpenSecrets.org reveals that the largest share of Watt’s campaign contributions in the 2008 election cycle came from the finance, insurance and real estate industries.


Breakdown of industries supporting Rep. Mel Watt’s 2008 campaign (graph from OpenSecrets.org)

In fact, of $609,072 given to Watt, $217,109 – or 35.6 percent – came from the money sector, including over $187,000 – or nearly 31 percent of his total contributions – from political action committees within the finance, insurance and real estate industry. The next highest industry supporting Watt was labor, which contributed only 14 percent of his total war chest.

Furthermore, the four largest contributors to Watt’s cause were Bank of America, Wachovia Corp., American Express and the American Bankers Association.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mel_Watt

Opposition to increased oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac
In 2003 Watt vehemently opposed efforts by the George W. Bush administration and Congressional Republicans to increase regulatory oversight of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.[7] “I don’t see much other than a shell game going on here, moving something from one agency to another and in the process weakening the bargaining power of poorer families and their ability to get affordable housing”, Mr. Watt said.[7] Watt said that “Brad Miller and I were at the forefront of that more than anybody else in America” in trying to prevent the financial crisis, despite the fact that Watt’s stated position was against an increase and more oversight for high risk lending.[8]

Mel Watt – Fed Shill

October 30, 2009

This man is an enemy of freedom, prosperity and government transparency. See my previous post for an explanation.

wattjoker

New Health Care Bill Has a Tax for Everyone

October 30, 2009

From HotAir:

Americans for Tax Reform has culled the 1990-page Pelosi health-care overhaul bill to find the taxes that will supposedly collect over $540 billion in revenue over 10 years.  It’s quite an impressive list of new burdens on Americans and their health-care providers and producers — but that’s redundant.  After all, who do you think will end up paying for the medical-device taxes?  It won’t be insurers or doctors:

  • Employer Mandate Excise Tax (Page 275): If an employer does not pay 72.5 percent of a single employee’s health premium (65 percent of a family employee), the employer must pay an excise tax equal to 8 percent of average wages.  Small employers (measured by payroll size) have smaller payroll tax rates of 0 percent (<$500,000), 2 percent ($500,000-$585,000), 4 percent ($585,000-$670,000), and 6 percent ($670,000-$750,000).
  • Individual Mandate Surtax (Page 296): If an individual fails to obtain qualifying coverage, he must pay an income surtax equal to the lesser of 2.5 percent of modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) or the average premium.  MAGI adds back in the foreign earned income exclusion and municipal bond interest.
  • Medicine Cabinet Tax (Page 324)
  • Cap on FSAs (Page 325)
  • Increased Additional Tax on Non-Qualified HSA Distributions (Page 326)
  • Denial of Tax Deduction for Employer Health Plans Coordinating with Medicare Part D (Page 327)
  • Surtax on Individuals and Small Businesses (Page 336)
  • Excise Tax on Medical Devices (Page 339)
  • Corporate 1099-MISC Information Reporting (Page 344)
  • Delay in Worldwide Allocation of Interest (Page 345)
  • Limitation on Tax Treaty Benefits for Certain Payments (Page 346)
  • Codification of the “Economic Substance Doctrine” (Page 349)
  • Application of “More Likely Than Not” Rule (Page 357)

See the ATR post for detailed descriptions of each new tax. 

End The Fed Book Excerpt

September 7, 2009

EndTheFedThe good folks at the Ludwig von Mises Institute have made a chapter of End the Fed by Ron Paul available for preview.

Read Chapter 2 here.

I read the entire book this weekend and I highly recommend it to anyone who is at all concerned about freedom and our economic future.

The Mises Institute says this about it:

A blast against central banking this powerful hasn’t been seen since the 19th century. The Fed itself has never been subjected to such a whithering critique. And it is from a man who has been fighting the Fed his entire political career. in fact, several chapters here provide documentary evidence of Congressman Paul’s own verbal exchanges with Chairman Greenspan and Chairman Bernanke.

What is especially impressive here is that Paul’s book goes far beyond old-time populist attacks on the banking elites. He understands Austrian theory as well as anyone, and he has learned from Mises and the whole of his tradition. So here we find patient explanation of the workings of the Fed and how it has distorted the legitimate business of banking, through every manner of intervention.

The political analysis in here is sound but expected. The theoretical analysis is the robust part, and something that few politicians in U.S. history could have provided. In this sense, Ron Paul is unique: courage in public service combined with intellectual rigor. This combination has made him a machine in opposition to the Fed, and this is by far his best presentation of the subject.

It turns up the heat on the Fed as never before. He shows that the central bank bears a large responsibility for the creation of the Leviathan state. It has wrecked our money, funded ghastly wars, and made possible the creation of the social welfare state that is bankrupting us financially and making the population dependent on the state. It has given rise to economic crisis and turmoil of all sorts.

Paul also offers a realistic plan for abolishing the Fed, if not immediately then with incremental steps to reduce its power and eliminate its dominance in American economic life.

Paul wrote this book as a personal statement. But it serves two additional purposes. It educates. And it inspires toward effective action.

Get your copy soon – we really do not have much time to lose.

Barney Frank Says Audit the Fed Bill Will Pass

August 28, 2009

This is the most excellent news 13 o’clock has heard in a very long time.  Congressman Frank, we’re going to hold you to your word on this. Do not disappoint us.

 

Transcript from The Washington Times:

“I have been pushing for more openness from the Fed. I want to restrict the powers of the Federal Reserve. First of all, the Fed will be the major losers of power if we are successful, as I believe we will be, setting up a financial product protection commission. The Federal Reserve is now charged with protecting consumers. They were supposed to do subprime mortgage restrictions.

Congress in 1994 gave the Fed powers to ban subprime mortgages. Alan Greenspan refused to do it. They had the power to ban credit card abuses. Under Greenspan they did nothing. Under Bernanke they started but only after Congress acted.That’s one of the reasons why in the new consumer protection agency, we will take away from the Federal reserve the power to go consumer protection.

Secondly, they have has since 1932 a right under Herbert Hoover to intervene in the economy whenever they could. Last September, the Federal Reserve they were going to advance $82 billion to AIG. I was kind of surprised and said, ‘Mr Bernanke do you have $82 billion?’ Mr. Bernanke replied, ‘I have $800 billion and under section 13.3 of the Federal Reserve Act they can lend anything they want.’

We are going to curtail that lending power. We are going to put some restrictions on it.

Finally we will subject them to a complete audit. I have been working with Ron Paul, who is the main sponsor of that bill. He agrees that we don’t want to have the audit appear as if influences monetary policy as that would be inflationary.

One of the things the audit will show you is what the Federal Reserve buys itself. And that will be made public, but not instantly because if it was made instantly people would be trading off it, so the data would be released after a time period of several months, enough time so it will not be market sensitive. This will probably pass in October.”

Town Hall Meeting with U.S. Congressman Brian Baird

August 24, 2009

Thirteen O’Clock salutes David Hedrick’s courage in standing up and speaking for liberty.