Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Semi-live blogging the Bernanke session with the Joint Economic Committee

12:15pm I need to head out soon. What happened to Carolyn Maloney (my representative) and Loretta Sanchez? Oh, I just googled Sanchez (specifically 'Loretta Sanchez Kinde Durkee' and 'Loretta Sanchez scandal') and can see why she might want to lay low. Having been in the same room as Maloney a few times, I'm not missing her at all.

12:00pm Michael Burgess picks up on Sanders questioning why the regulators did not pick up on fraud that precipitated the crisis. Hell freezes over. No, the regulators would have had to prosecute congressmen, federal agencies, and ratings agencies--not just Wall Street dopes. That's why.

11:45am Elijah Cummings worried that the government agencies (Fannie, Freddie, FHA et al) need to make more home loans to high risk borrowers. Because the way to get us out of our mess is to do more of what got us into it. I burned my house down, and lighting up my barbeque in the basement will bring it back.

11:30am Bernie Sanders turning the spotlight to the Wall Street protestors, suggesting they are a precursor to another collapse. I now recognize the voters from the great state of Vermont. ... Follows up with the injurious usury going on with credit card interest rates. If I were some of these banks, I wouldn't lend some of these customers anything, at any interest rate. I have now crossed off Vermont from my list of places to retire.

11:15am Rick Mulvaney thinks that higher interest rates are the magic bullet, making things even harder for Congress, so therefore Congress will act. I think he is a Colts fan, thinking that having Peyton Manning on the injury list will help his team win. Mulvaney needs to get some schooling from Klobuchar. And the Colts might need to draft Andrew Luck.

11:00am Maurice Hinchey angry about uneven distribution of wealth, and the repeal of Glass-Steagall. I guess hard work and talent are not factors in his model.

10:45am Amy Klobuchar gets it. Senator Klobuchar for Majority Leader!

10:30am Bernie Sanders asks Bernanke to violate his limits at the Fed, and start lending directly to small businesses. I wonder if Senator Sanders will ask him to start off by doubling down on Solyndra.

10:15am Bernanake's statment closes with:
Fostering healthy growth and job creation is a shared responsibility of all economic policymakers, in close cooperation with the private sector. Fiscal policy is of critical importance, as I have noted today, but a wide range of other policies--pertaining to labor markets, housing, trade, taxation, and regulation, for example-- also have important roles to play. For our part, we at the Federal Reserve will continue to work to help create an environment that provides the greatest possible economic opportunity for all Americans.

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