Friday, September 28, 2012

Bill O’Reilly Admits the Mainstream Media Lies to the American People


Bill O'Reilly and Lies


"> On the O’Reilly Factor program aired by Fox News on July 9, in a discussion with media expert Bernard Goldberg regarding mainstream media’s coverage of President Barack Obama, Bill O’Reilly admits that mainstream media lies to the American people, stating “many in the media, powerful people, don’t want to tell the truth to the people, because it’s more important to them to get their ideology in play than to let the folks know what the truth is.”
GOLDBERG:  You said in the “Talking Points” that, if Barack Obama got his way and taxes went up on the wealthy, the top 1 or 2 percent of the wage earners in this country, that would provide enough income, I think you said, for 8 and a half days, right?
O’REILLY: Correct.
GOLDBERG: OK. Do you think that’s going to be on page one of the New York Times tomorrow? That’s a very important fact. Because that shows that what Barack Obama said today has nothing to do with economics…
O’REILLY: Yes, it’s a ruse. Right. Absolute ruse.
GOLDBERG: … and everything to do with politics. So let’s see if the New York Times pays any attention tomorrow.
O’REILLY: It’s not going to run on any front page of any liberal newspaper, and it’s not going to be taken into account by the liberal economists, because they don’t want to tell the people the truth.
And I think this is — Bernie and I, and I’m speaking for Bernie now and he can correct me in a moment if I’m wrong. What Bernie and I are trying to get across with this media segment every week is that many in the media, powerful people, don’t want to tell the truth to the people.  Because it’s more important to them to get their ideology in play than to let the folks know what the truth is. And that’s a total change from what the American media was 30, 40 years ago.
GOLDBERG: Yes. That’s pretty close to my position, except I don’t know if you’re suggesting that they consciously wake up in the morning and say, “I’m going to try to help Barack Obama.”
O’REILLY: No, they don’t do that. But they consciously wake up in the morning and they say, “I’m not going to report things that make my ideology look bad.”
GOLDBERG: I don’t know if they consciously say it.
O’REILLY: Oh, I do. I think.
GOLDBERG: But they do it. They do it.
Look, can I give you another — you like facts. Let me give you another example. There’s a piece in the current edition of The Weekly Standard by a very smart fellow named Pete Wehner, who’s on FOX from time to time. I’m going to just give you five facts. Just five.
Fact No. 1, as a candidate, Barack Obama promised to create five million new energy jobs alone. Just 5 million energy jobs.
Fact No. 2, he claimed that, by the end of the first term, his healthcare plan, would quote, “bring down premiums by $2,500 for the typical family.”
Fact No. 3, he guaranteed that his financial rescue plan would help stop foreclosures.
Fact No. 4, in the first year of his presidency, he pledged, quote, “to cut the deficit we inherited in the half by the end of my first term in office.”
Fact No. 5, he said he would, quote, “lift two million Americans from poverty” and, quote, “jolt our economy back to life.”
Have you seen that any place in the mainstream media? That Barack Obama has failed to deliver on his promises?
O’REILLY: No. Nobody has put that in. Except for The Weekly Standard, nobody has brought that up. But all politicians make promises, and few deliver, to be fair.
GOLDBERG: Yes. But it’s one thing to promise vaguely, “I promise you hope and change.” These are very specific promises.
Listen, the same mainstream media that put Mitt Romney’s stupid stunt while he was teenager in high school all over page one and on several jump pages, and the same mainstream media that put on page one Ann Romney’s horse thing, you know, where she rides horses, which is a very expensive hobby, they found enough time and space to devote to that. Why can’t they find time to devote to this?
O’REILLY: Because they want President Obama to be reelected.  As simple as that.
GOLDBERG: It is. It really is.
O’REILLY: All right. Bernie, thank you.

Canada Rejects Fox Style News


Bill O’Reilly Admits 

Mainstream Media Lies to the American People

  On the O’Reilly Factor program aired by Fox News on July 9, in a discussion with media expert Bernard Goldberg regarding mainstream media’s coverage of President Barack Obama, Bill O’Reilly admits that mainstream media lies to the American people, stating “many in the media, powerful people, don’t want to tell the truth to the people, because it’s more important to them to get their ideology in play than to let the folks know what the truth is.”
Freedom remains alive in certain parts of the world, particularly in Canada. Our neighbors to the north have been dealing with legislative action that would remove a mandate requiring all News Broadcasts to tell the truth. This was similar to the Fairness Doctrine which Ronald Reagen abolished in 1987. The Canadian Regulators announced that they would Reject all attempts to repeal a law that forbids lying on broadcast news.

"As America's middle class battles for its survival on the Wisconsin barricades -- against various Koch Oil surrogates and the corporate toadies at Fox News -- fans of enlightenment, democracy and justice can take comfort from a significant victory north of Wisconsin border. Fox News will not be moving into Canada after all! The reason: Canada regulators announced last week they would reject efforts by Canada's right wing Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, to repeal a law that forbids lying on broadcast news.

Canada's Radio Act requires that "a licenser may not broadcast....any false or misleading news." The provision has kept Fox News and right wing talk radio out of Canada and helped make Canada a model for liberal democracy and freedom. As a result of that law, Canadians enjoy high quality news coverage including the kind of foreign affairs and investigative journalism that flourished in this country before Ronald Reagan abolished the "Fairness Doctrine" in 1987. Political dialogue in Canada is marked by civility, modesty, honesty, collegiality, and idealism that have pretty much disappeared on the U.S. airwaves. When Stephen Harper moved to abolish anti-lying provision of the Radio Act, Canadians rose up to oppose him fearing that their tradition of honest non partisan news would be replaced by the toxic, overtly partisan, biased and dishonest news coverage familiar to American citizens who listen to Fox News and talk radio. Harper's proposal was timed to facilitate the launch of a new right wing network, "Sun TV News" which Canadians call "Fox News North."

Harper, often referred to as "George W. Bush's Mini Me," is known for having mounted a Bush like war on government scientists, data collectors, transparency, and enlightenment in general. He is a wizard of all the familiar tools of demagoguery; false patriotism, bigotry, fear, selfishness and belligerent religiosity.

Harper's attempts to make lying legal on Canadian television is a stark admission that right wing political ideology can only dominate national debate through dishonest propaganda. Since corporate profit-taking is not an attractive vessel for populism, a political party or broadcast network that makes itself the tool of corporate and financial elites must lie to make its agenda popular with the public. In the Unites States, Fox News and talk radio, the sock puppets of billionaires and corporate robber barons have become the masters of propaganda and distortion on the public airwaves. Fox News's notoriously biased and dishonest coverage of the Wisconsin's protests is a prime example of the brand of news coverage Canada has smartly avoided."

Outsourced: Who speaks for the Republicans

March 24, 2012, 4:28 pm

The Outsourced Party

Who speaks for the Republican party? The answer is that everyone does — and therefore, no one does.
Much air time and many trees have been wasted trying to explain the division, rancor and lethargy that have beset the Republican nominating campaign, now into its second year and threatening to run all the way to the party’s national convention in late August. But it’s no great mystery. Republicans have fallen prey to one of the favorite tactics of just the sort of heedless, improvident, twenty-first century capitalism they revere. Their party has been outsourced.
For decades, Republicans have recruited outside groups and individuals to amplify their party’s message and its influence. This is a legitimate democratic tactic that they have carried off brilliantly, helping to shift the political spectrum in the United States significantly to the right.
When Republicans came to believe in the 1960s that they were up against a “liberal biased” media that would never give them a fair shake, they began the long march to build their own, alternative information establishment. As chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Mark Fowler, led the fight to abolish the “Fairness Doctrine” in 1987, further empowering what was already a legion of right-wing talk radio programs.

In 1949, drawing on a long history of court decisions; on public hearings; and on legislation mandating “equal time” for political candidates, the F.C.C. ruled that holders of radio and television broadcast licenses must “devote a reasonable percentage of their broadcast time to the presentation of news and programs devoted to the consideration and discussion of public issues of interest in the community,” and that this must include “different attitudes and viewpoints concerning these vital and often controversial issues.”
The Supreme Court repeatedly upheld the F.C.C.’s power to make such a rule — but never gave it the power of law. In 1986, a pair of Ronald Reagan’s judicial appointees on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Robert Bork and Antonin Scalia, ruled that the Fairness Doctrine was not “a binding statutory obligation.”

Armed with this verdict, Fowler, who insisted on viewing television, in particular, as not a finite and supremely influential broadcast medium but “just another appliance — it’s a toaster with pictures,” persuaded his fellow commissioners to abolish the Fairness Doctrine. Furious Democrats in Congress passed legislation to codify the doctrine into law in 1987 and 1991, but these attempts were vetoed by Reagan and George Bush, respectively; Democrats have gone on trying to make the Fairness Doctrine law to this day, but have always been stymied by adamant Republican opposition.
Right-wing radio was dominant on the airwaves before the Fairness Doctrine was abolished. But now it had the field of public discourse virtually all to itself. It provided conservatives with a direct outreach to the public, free of any intercession by the “elites” Newt Gingrich is still denouncing in this season’s debates. Right-leaning media networks such as Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcast Network and especially Clear Channel Communications soon became major media conglomerates, with no obligation to broadcast any conflicting views.

The biggest media coup of all for the Republican party, though, was the advent of nakedly partisan Fox News, created by Roger Ailes, former media advisor to the Nixon, Reagan and George Bush administrations. It was Ailes who thereby managed to throw the entire weight of Rupert Murdoch’s worldwide media empire behind the party — and it was Ailes, reportedly, who kept it on the conservative straight-and-narrow when Mr. Murdoch toyed with the idea of putting the empire behind Barack Obama, the new Democrat, in 2008, much as it had backed Tony Blair’s New Labour for a time in Great Britain. Instead, thanks to Ailes, conservative politicians and advocates saw both their ideas amplified and their wallets fattened by a dizzying array of Murdoch television shows, books and newspapers.
But it wasn’t just in the media where the Republican party proved ingenious in outsourcing its rhetoric and shifting the national dialogue. In 1971, during Richard M. Nixon’s first term in office, Lewis F. Powell Jr., a Republican corporate lawyer from Virginia, summoned the resources of the business community to the cause with his famous memorandum to the National Chamber of Commerce, “Attack on American Free Enterprise System.”

Powell wanted “American business” to fight back everywhere it could against what he saw as the many enemies of free enterprise. Tactics would include demanding “equal time” on the nation’s college campuses and — ironically enough — on the nation’s airwaves, by appealing to the fairness standards of the F.C.C. Yet more importantly, Powell’s memorandum inspired the founding of the Heritage Foundation, the Cato Institute, the Manhattan Institute, and other conservative think tanks. Wealthy businessmen and other individuals from Richard Mellon Scaife to the Koch brothers stepped up, pouring millions of dollars into right-wing magazines, books and political campaigns.
Powell won himself an appointment to the Supreme Court — and the nation’s capital won itself a major new industry. It may seem as if lobbyists in Washington have always been more numerous than locusts, but in fact when Powell wrote his memo just over 40 years ago, there were at most only a few hundred. Today, there are tens of thousands — leaders of a multi-billion dollar industry in its own right, and one mostly interested in “freeing” business from regulation and taxes.
The Republican effort to rally every conceivable outside entity to the party’s cause was wildly successful. Again and again over the years, conservative policy institutes have armed the party’s candidates with intellectual arguments, while the conservative media barrage has blasted a way through to high office for even the most lackluster Republican nominees.

Yet increasingly this meant that the Republican Party was outsourcing both body and soul. Both what the party believed in and its ability to do the heavy lifting necessary to win elections was handed over to outside interests — outside interests that did not necessarily share the party’s goals or have any stake in ameliorating its tactics.
This has become suddenly and painfully evident this year. Party leaders may not have liked Rush Limbaugh’s disgusting attacks on a Georgetown law student — calling her a “slut” and a “prostitute” for advocating that insurance companies provide affordable birth control — but what does he care?

If the Republicans lose the election, it will most likely mean all the more angry conservatives tuning in and driving up the ratings for Rush and his fellow radio ranters. Limbaugh is now facing a challenge from outraged liberals and others urging his sponsors to drop his show. But the most that the usually garrulous Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney would allow himself to say was that “it’s not the language I would have used.” Rick Santorum averred that Rush was “being absurd,” but implied that was O.K. — “an entertainer can be absurd. He’s in a very different business than I am.”
But of course, he’s not. Rush Limbaugh is in the very same business that Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney are in — and guess who’s in charge? It’s not the radio calamity howlers who take their cues from the party leaders now, but the other way around.

This campaign season we’ve seen all the major Republican candidates for president adopt the bombastic, apocalyptic rhetoric of talk radio, insisting that we will “lose America” if they aren’t elected, and filling their speeches and debates with ugly personal insults, directed at each other and at President Obama. The results are in the poll numbers. Unlike the sharp but generally civil 2008 primary fight between Obama and Hillary Clinton, which galvanized the Democratic base, the Republican struggle this year has been steadily driving down the party’s appeal and driving up the candidates’ negative ratings.
Poll numbers for Republicans in Congress have taken a nosedive, too, as the party’s intransigence on Capitol Hill has allowed President Obama to appear reasonable by contrast. But what does that matter to the thousands of lobbyists who bring in more and more of the money for congressional campaigns? Sure, a Republican victory might afford them more closed-door sessions on rewriting federal regulations. But Democratic victories will serve their purpose just as well, making clear to the money men who send them to Washington that they are more needed than ever to resist “job-killing regulations.”

Meanwhile, Fox News has become a special impediment to Republican order — largely thanks to its own success. All the enticements of the Murdoch empire have produced a generation of reality show pols, at least as interested in landing their own TV series as winning office. Two of the most popular Republican candidates for president going into the race, Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin, both declined to run rather than jeopardize their shows. Newt Gingrich turned much of his campaign into book tours for himself and his wife. Ask yourself which was most likely: that Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann really thought they could be elected president or that they were looking to improve their “brand.”
And after decades of trying to undo federal campaign-finance laws, Republicans at last succeeded — only to watch the party’s wealthy sponsors diversify their interests from think tanks to super PACs. Why bother with all the time and expense of hiring a bunch of intellectuals to occupy some expensive piece of Washington real estate and hammer out policy positions — when you can go out and make a straight cash exchange for a candidate?
Even as Rick Santorum was pleading that sometimes you have to “take one for the team” in the last Republican debate, his candidacy was being kept alive largely by money from a single donor, Foster Friess, the conservative Christian multimillionaire with the Batman villain name. Gingrich has his own sponsors, the casino billionaires Sheldon and Miriam Adelson, hawkish supporters of Israel. Does what these individuals care about most fit in with the Republican party’s election strategy? So what?

It’s not that these individual donors believe in things — conservative Christian stands on abortion, unmitigated support for Israel and so on — that are so different from what much of the party’s base believes in. But political campaigns, especially national campaigns in America, are all about nuance and finesse — about just how you say something and when and where you say it. Presidential candidates need to elide certain issues at times, either things they know that they cannot do, but are loath to tell their base; or things that they intend to try, but cannot tell the rest of the electorate until they have gained power and built up the necessary public support; or things that they have no idea how they will handle until certain events play out and force their hand.
The question of whether or not the United States or Israel should attack Iran to suppress its nuclear program is a good example of this last sort of issue. Just what Iran’s capabilities are of developing nuclear weapons, what its intentions are once it should have them, how successful any attack on them can be and what the consequences of such an attack might be are just some of the immensely complicated questions surrounding this debate.

Yet such complexities don’t seem to matter much to the ravenously egotistical Gingrich, so long as they don’t much matter to his sponsor. Money, it’s true, has always played a critical role in American politics. But in the past, presidential nominees did more than simply try to raise money. They tried to build consensus within their party. Fringe candidates like Gingrich and Santorum were generally eliminated from the start by their past defeats or by their extremist views — college is evil — but if they weren’t, our political system gave them the chance to take their arguments to the people in relatively small, manageable states and see if they caught on.
Now, none of that really matters so much. Forced to resign as speaker of the House by your own party? Handed the worst electoral defeat in your own state that anyone can remember? Way behind in the delegate count? In some circumstances, it might be good that even though you’ve failed previously you can still go out and make your case to the people. But now you can even fail at that, as well. It doesn’t matter. Just one billionaire can keep you on the campaign trail!

Thanks to their inventiveness, Republicans have stumbled into the brave new world of American politics. From primaries to photo ops, from direct mail to voter suppression laws, the Republican party has almost always been the real innovator in electoral politics, usually leaving their slower brother, the Democrats, in the dust for at least a campaign season or two.
Now they’ve achieved the political equivalent of shuttering that foul old steel mill and shipping the hard work off for others to do while they dabble in these fascinating new derivatives. Now their candidates and their ideas are seen as so many junk bonds, and they don’t seem to have the wherewithal to make the party over from within.

The Republican party has been moving to the right for half-a-century now and generally carrying the country with it. But in the past, even under the right’s greatest hero, Ronald Reagan, this movement came in fits and starts, as Republican candidates and officeholders had to accommodate themselves to real-world situations and the qualms of their constituents. This is the chastening role that elections are supposed to play. Participating in a democracy means more than simply insisting, over and over again, in as loud and arrogant a voice as possible, in as many venues as your money will allow, what it is that you want. It means listening, it means convincing, it means compromising — all those things that political parties and their leaders used to be fairly good at.

At long last, Republicans seem to be finally coalescing around Mitt Romney’s candidacy, and he could still win the presidency if the economy slumps again. But the longer-term problem will remain: how to maintain a coherent, mass political party when so many individuals are empowered as never before to redirect it to their own, personal ends.
Kevin Baker is the author of the “City of Fire” series of historical novels, “Dreamland,” “Paradise Alley” and “Strivers Row.”

Fox News' Lies Keep Them Out of Canada

By Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Reader Supported News
01 March 11

s America's middle class battles for its survival on the Wisconsin barricades - against various Koch Oil surrogates and the corporate toadies at Fox News - fans of enlightenment, democracy and justice can take comfort from a significant victory north of the Wisconsin border. Fox News will not be moving into Canada after all! The reason: Canadian regulators announced last week they would reject efforts by Canada's right-wing Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, to repeal a law that forbids lying on broadcast news.
Canada's Radio Act requires that "a licenser may not broadcast ... any false or misleading news." The provision has kept Fox News and right-wing talk radio out of Canada and helped make Canada a model for liberal democracy and freedom. As a result of that law, Canadians enjoy high quality news coverage, including the kind of foreign affairs and investigative journalism that flourished in this country before Ronald Reagan abolished the "Fairness Doctrine" in 1987. Political dialogue in Canada is marked by civility, modesty, honesty, collegiality, and idealism that have pretty much disappeared on the US airwaves. When Stephen Harper moved to abolish the anti-lying provision of the Radio Act, Canadians rose up to oppose him fearing that their tradition of honest non-partisan news would be replaced by the toxic, overtly partisan, biased and dishonest news coverage familiar to American citizens who listen to Fox News and talk radio. Harper's proposal was timed to facilitate the launch of a new right-wing network, "Sun TV News" which Canadians call "Fox News North."

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper takes part in an event at the Library of Parliament on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, 02/28/11. (photo: Chris Wattie/Reuters)
Harper, often referred to as "George W. Bush's Mini Me," is known for having mounted a Bush-like war on government scientists, data collectors, transparency, and enlightenment in general. He is a wizard of all the familiar tools of demagoguery; false patriotism, bigotry, fear, selfishness and belligerent religiosity.
Harper's attempts to make lying legal on Canadian television are a stark admission that right-wing political ideology can only dominate national debate through dishonest propaganda. Since corporate profit-taking is not an attractive vessel for populism, a political party or broadcast network that makes itself the tool of corporate and financial elites must lie to make its agenda popular with the public. In the Unites States, Fox News and talk radio, the sock puppets of billionaires and corporate robber barons, have become the masters of propaganda and distortion on the public airwaves. Fox News' notoriously biased and dishonest coverage of the Wisconsin's protests is a prime example of the brand of news coverage Canada has smartly avoided.

Fox-Can-Lie Lawsuit

People frequently refer to a court case that Fox won, which essentially gives the media the right to lie. This came from an appellate court decision that states that the FCC’s news distortion policy does not qualify as a rule, law, or regulation.
From Wikipedia:
Jane Akre and her husband Steve Wilson are former employees of Fox owned-and-operated station WTVT in Tampa, Florida. In 1997, they were fired from the station after refusing to knowingly include false information in their report concerning the Monsanto Company’s production of RBGH, a drug designed to make cows produce more milk. They successfully sued under Florida’s whistle blower law and were awarded a US $425,000 settlement by jury decision. However, Fox appealed to an appellate court and won, after the court declared that the FCC policy against falsification that Fox violated was just a policy and not a “law, rule, or regulation”, and so the whistle blower law did not apply.
The court agreed with WTVT’s (Fox) argument “that the FCC’s policy against the intentional falsification of the news — which the FCC has called its “news distortion policy” — does not qualify as the required “law, rule, or regulation” under section 448.102.[...] Because the FCC’s news distortion policy is not a “law, rule, or regulation” under section 448.102, Akre has failed to state a claim under the whistle-blower’s statute.”[1]
In 2001, Jane Akre and her husband won the Goldman Environmental Prize as a recognition for their report on RBGH. [2]
In 2004, Fox filed a US$1.7 million counter-suit against Akre and Wilson for trial fees and costs. Akre and Wilson both appear in a major portion of the 2004/5 critical documentary, The Corporation.
In 2007 Jane became the editor-in-chief of the national news desk at[3]
Fox appealed and prevailed February 14, 2003 when an appeals court issued a ruling reversing the jury, accepting a defense argument that had been rejected by three other judges on at least six separate occasions…
The whistle-blowing journalists, twice refused Fox offers of big-money deals to keep quiet about what they knew, filed their landmark lawsuit April 2, 1998 and survived three Fox efforts to have their case summarily dismissed.  It is the first time journalists have used a whistleblower law to seek a legal remedy for being fired by for refusing to distort the news.   Steve and Jane are now considering an appeal to the Florida state Supreme Court.
Appellate Court Rules Media Can Legally Lie.

By Mike Gaddy. Published Feb. 28, 2003
The court did not dispute the heart of Akre’s claim, that Fox pressured her to broadcast a false story to protect the broadcaster from having to defend the truth in court, as well as suffer the ire of irate advertisers. Fox argued from the first, and failed on three separate occasions, in front of three different judges, to have the case tossed out on the grounds there is no hard, fast, and written rule against deliberate distortion of the news.
The attorneys for Fox, owned by media baron Rupert Murdoch, argued the First Amendment gives broadcasters the right to lie or deliberately distort news reports on the public airwaves.
In its six-page written decision, the Court of Appeals held that the Federal Communications Commission position against news distortion is only a “policy,” not a promulgated law, rule, or regulation. Fox aired a report after the ruling saying it was “totally vindicated” by the verdict.

Bain Capital, Clear Channel Hannity, Limbaugh and Beck

Bain Capital Owns Clear Channel (Romney Supported by Talk Show sphere)

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Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Michael Savage, etc. under umbrella company that candidate Mitt Romney headed.
Michael Snyder
Activist Post
January 13, 2012
Wouldn’t it be great if a Republican presidential candidate could just buy the support of just about every major conservative talk show host in America? Well, it may not be as far-fetched as you may think.
Clear Channel owns more radio stations (850) than anyone else in the United States. They also own Premiere Radio Networks, the company that syndicates the radio shows of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Glenn Beck, among others.
Needless to say, Clear Channel basically owns conservative talk radio in the United States. So who owns Clear Channel?
Well, it turns out that Bain Capital is one of the primary owners of Clear Channel. Yes, you read that correctly. The company that Mitt Romney ran for so long is one of the “big bosses” over virtually all conservative talk radio in America.
Of course Mitt Romney is not running Bain Capital anymore. He is a “retired partner”, but he still has a huge financial stake in Bain Capital. We’re talking about millions upon millions of dollars. If you doubt this, just check out page 34 of this public financial disclosure report. So if you have been wondering why so many conservative talk show hosts are being so incredibly kind to Mitt Romney, this just might be the answer.
In the media world, there is a clear understanding that you simply do not bite the hand that feeds you. Some of the most prominent conservative talk radio hosts are earning tens of millions of dollars a year.
If you were making tens of millions of dollars a year, wouldn’t you be very careful to avoid offending your boss?
The deal in which Bain Capital became one of the owners of Clear Channel was initiated just a short time before Mitt Romney’s first run for president. The following comes from Wikipedia….
On November 16, 2006, Clear Channel announced plans to go private, being bought out by two private-equity firms, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Bain Capital Partners for $18.7 billion, which is just under a 10 percent premium above its closing price of $35.36 a share on November 16 (the deal values Clear Channel at $37.60 per share).
The deal was finalized in 2008. Today, Bain Capital is still one of the primary owners of Clear Channel.
One of the subsidiaries of Clear Channel is Premiere Radio Networks.
Premiere Radio Networks distributes a whole host of conservative talk radio shows. Everyone in the conservative world knows names such as Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck. Clear Channel also controls some other conservative talk radio hosts (such as Michael Savage and Mark Levin) that are not part of the Premiere Radio family.
The power that Premiere Radio Networks has is absolutely staggering. The following is directly from the official Clear Channel website….
Premiere Radio Networks Inc., a subsidiary of Clear Channel Communications, syndicates 90 radio programs and services to more than 5,000 radio affiliations and reaches over 190 million listeners weekly. Premiere Radio is the number one radio network in the country and features the following personalities: Rush Limbaugh, Jim Rome, Casey Kasem, Ryan Seacrest, Glenn Beck, Bob (Kevoian) & Tom (Griswold), Delilah, Steve Harvey, Blair Garner, George Noory, John Boy and Billy, Big Tigger, Dr. Dean Edell, Bob Costas, Sean Hannity and others. Premiere is based in Sherman Oaks, California, with 13 offices nationwide.
So do you think that any of those hosts is going to risk viciously attacking Mitt Romney and Bain Capital during this election season?
Not likely.
One of the controversies that has plagued Premiere Radio Networks in recent years has been the uproar over their use of paid actors to call in to their radio shows.
The following comes from Wikipedia….
Clear Channel, through its subsidiary, Premiere Radio Networks, auditions and hires actors to call in to talk radio shows and pose as listeners in order to provide shows, carried by Clear Channel and other broadcasters, with planned content in the form of stories and opinions. The custom caller service provided by Premiere Radio ensures its clients they won’t hear the same actor’s voice for at least two months in order to appear authentic to listeners who might otherwise catch on.
So perhaps that explains where some of the “Romney callers” come from.
There is nothing illegal about what Romney and Bain Capital have done, but it sure does not pass the “smell test”.
Conservative talk radio has the potential to sway millions of conservative voters in one direction or another, and it is just not proper for Bain Capital and Romney to have such an overpowering financial interest in conservative talk radio.
And, yes, Mitt Romney is still bringing in lots of money from Bain Capital. The following comes from a Wikipedia article about Mitt Romney….
At the time of his departure, Romney negotiated an agreement with Bain Capital that allowed him to receive a passive profit share as a retired partner in some Bain Capital entities, including buyout and investment funds.[62][57] With the private equity business continuing to thrive, this deal would bring him millions of dollars in income each year.[57] As a result of his business career, by 2007 Romney and his wife had a net worth of between $190 and $250 million, most of it held in blind trusts.[62] An additional blind trust existed in the name of the Romneys’ children and grandchildren that was valued at between $70 and $100 million as of 2007.[63] The couple’s net worth remained in the same range as of 2011, and was still held in blind trusts.
In addition, Bain Capital and Bain & Company continue to pour huge amounts of money into Romney’s campaign coffers.
Just check out the following list of the biggest donors to the Romney campaign. These numbers come from….
Goldman Sachs $367,200
Credit Suisse Group $203,750
Morgan Stanley $199,800
HIG Capital $186,500
Barclays $157,750
Kirkland & Ellis $132,100
Bank of America $126,500
PriceWaterhouseCoopers $118,250
EMC Corp $117,300
JPMorgan Chase & Co $112,250
The Villages $97,500
Vivint Inc $80,750
Marriott International $79,837
Sullivan & Cromwell $79,250
Bain Capital $74,500
UBS AG $73,750
Wells Fargo $61,500
Blackstone Group $59,800
Citigroup Inc $57,050
Bain & Co $52,500
As with anything, whenever you want to get to the real truth you just need to follow the money.
Earlier this week, Sean Hannity told Rick Perry that his attacks on Mitt Romney’s time at Bain Capital sounded like something that “Occupy Wall Street” would say.
Just the other day, Rush Limbaugh compared Rick Perry to Fidel Castro and rabidly defended Mitt Romney on his radio program….
‘There’s no way you can try to dress that up,’ Limbaugh fumed. ‘I don’t understand it. Well, politically I understand it, but that’s just absurd. It’s sad. ‘Cause I really, really, really like Rick Perry! I really do. I had such hopes! I did. I’ll tell you, I did, but all of this talk about “corporate raiders,” and as I listen to politicians start talking about capitalism, lights are going off in my head. Maybe they don’t really know what it is. Maybe they’re under some misconception about what capitalism is, because this characterization of it? A distinction with venture capitalism and vulture capitalism? This bite from Perry doesn’t compute.’
So why are these conservative talk show hosts defending Mitt Romney so furiously?
I think now we know.
    It is all about the money.

    When you have enough money, you can get conservative talk show hosts to promote an extremely liberal candidate.
    Yes, of course Bain Capital does not “control” what these talk show hosts say.
    Yes, of course some of the talk show hosts toss some light criticism at Romney from time to time.
    But they simply do not go after Romney like they should.
    The truth is that Mitt Romney is really a Democrat that is masquerading as a Republican. When you closely examine his record, he is very similar to Obama.
    There is no way in the world that any self-respecting conservative should ever cast a single vote for him.
    But right now Mitt Romney is running away with the race for the Republican nomination.
    If Republicans can be fooled this badly, is there any hope for the future of the Republican Party?
    This article first appeared here at the American Dream. Michael Snyder is a writer, speaker and activist who writes and edits his own blogs The American Dream and Economic Collapse Blog. Follow him on Twitter here.

    Tuesday, September 25, 2012

    John COUCH Sr and Elizabeth James

     "John COUCH Sr was born about 1750 in , Germany [?]. He died about 1830 in , Perry, Ky. He has reference number 112. !John was a very large man (Weighed up to 500 Lbs.) and fought in the Revolutionary War. He later went to KY about 1800 with his son Martin and lived and died in KY. He is referred to by Martin in the Dickey Diary. I have marriage license to Elizabeth Campbell James in Orange Co., NC. He married her after Mary Polly Boone died. He is supposed to have served as a wagon driver for Gen. Washington in the Revolutionary War.

    John married 3d to Mary Patterson. . . see will in NC Wills, Orange Co., NC 1752-1800 by Ruth Herndon Shields.Book C, Pg. 79. Will in archives proven 2/1796 signed Mary Patterson. "All her estate to be equally divided among the surviving children of Couch and Betsy,his wife deceased. The names of the children now living are Mary Couch, Letitia Couch, July Couch, Eleanor Couch and Elizabeth Couch. All are under 18 years of age. Executors: Worthy friends Robert Campbell, Roger Daniel and John Couch.Witnesses: Robert Campbell, Roger Daniel.  See Ira Couch interview on 4/29/1898 at Big Creek, KY. Names John Couch as grandfather! Interview on page 2277, roll 3, John Dickey Diary. Available from LDS in Salt Lake City, UT.

     Some of this information furnished by Stewart Couch and Gladys K. Frazier. Mrs. Frazier is descendant of John Couch. Stewart Couch died in about 1980. John Couch and Polly Boone had 6 children. After Polly died, He married Elizabeth James Campbell, who was divorced from Patrick Campbell. Martin was the only issue of this union. After Martin was born, John Divorced Elizabeth and returned to Orange Co. NC and married Mary Patterson.They had five daughters before Mary died in 1796. They are mentioned in her will in my files.North Carolina Marriage Bonds, 1741-1868 Bride: Elizabeth Campbell Groom: John Couch Bond Date: 02 Dec 1783County: Orange Record #: 01 096Bond #: 000096011. He was married to Elizabeth JAMES on 2 Dec 1783 in , Orange, Nc. He was divorced from Elizabeth JAMES.

    Elizabeth JAMES was born about 1745. She died about 1830 in , Perry, Ky. !Elizabeth James Campbell was married to Patrick Campbell JR, who divorced her.She married John Couch after Polly Boone died and bore him at least one son,Martin. She is said to be related to the famous Jessie James according to information in the John Jay Dickey Diary. I have the marriage date and license for John Couch and Elizabeth Campbell in my files from Orange Co., NC Notes of Patrick Campbell Jr.>Patrick was born abt 1726 in Ireland or PA, and died August 28, 1799 in> Muhlenberg County, KY. He married Elizabeth James abt 1751 [doesn't fit with birth date of 1745] in Augusta Co.>VA., the daughter of William James and Lettice Taylor.>>"Patrick Campbell-Orange Co-1771. Proved Loyalty Oath to Elizabeth:>
     Charles, William, Patrick, James, John, Mary, Elizabeth and>Jennett.">>

    From Washington Co VA records.>>"20th May 1752. Patrick Campbell Sr. (?) and Elizabeth, to Patrick>Campbell: 212 acres. From Beverly to Patrick Sr. 21st Feb 1738; William Thompson's line, Samuel Bradford's line and John Mitchel's line; corner John Ward; corner Charles Campbell. Crossing Christian Creek and South River.">>From Augusta Co. VA court records, p.302 ...also...>"Page 549: 2oth May 1777 Patrick Campbell Jr., and (sister-in-law) Agness to>John Burk, of Philadelphia Penn. tract bought by Patrick Campbell, from>Beverly 21 Feb 1738 and recorded in Orange Co">...also...>

    "Growth of the Irish Settlement 1752-1762 (page 118) In addition to the>Luckies and Armstrongs, other pioneers from Lancaster County, PA who>acquired grants or deeds in the Irish Settlement were Henry Schiles, David>Strain, Thomas Douglas, William Cowan, Francis Lock, Patrick Campbell (Derry>or Donegal township)>XXVII. 64-65 Rowan Deeds, III, 370. Patrick Campbell may never have lived in>Carolina, he sold his land to James Armstrong and James Brandon in 1762, at>which time he was referred to as Patrick Campbell of Pennsylvania ". Rowan>Deeds, VI, 357>>

    More on Patrick Campbell Jr.>
    Fact 1: May have come from Ireland to Penn. about 1725>
    Fact 2: Lived in PA, VA, KC, KY (KC?)>Fact 3: 5 sons,
    Fact 3 daughters>
    Fact 4: 2nd marriage to John Couch widow with 6 children>>

    Notes on Elizabeth James:>Augusta Co VA records, page 50: "May 20, 1752. Elizabeth Campbell>relinquished dower in 514 acres, conveyed by her husband, Patrick Campbell,>to Charles Campbell, in Orange. (Dowry from step-father Rev. James>Campbell)">>

    More on Elizabeth James:>
    Fact 1: in 1830 Perry County Census>
    Fact 2: Buried Campbell Bend Cemetery>
    Fact 3: When John Couch died, widowed with 6 children.>>
    That is about all I have on Elizabeth James and after re-reading this I see>it is mostly about Patrick Campbell, but he was married to Elizabeth James>during most of this time period.. Children of John COUCH Sr and Elizabeth JAMES were:
    +2 i. Martin COUCH.
    +3 ii. Austin COUCH.
    +4 iii. John COUCH Jr.
    +5 iv. James Bartlett COUCH.He [John Couch] was married to Mary "Polly" BOONE about 1769 in , Orange, Nc.
    Mary "Polly" BOONE was born about 1746 in , Pa. She [Mary Polly Boone] died in 1781 in ,NC. She has reference number 113. !Info on death furnished by Gladys K. Frazier of Perry Co., Ky and Westland, MI. 31640 Fairchild % Carolyn Hatton, Westland, MI 48185. Lives in Letcher Co.,KY. (Whitesburg) in summer. Is grandaughter of Rebecca Campbell and Pete Stacy.

    Children of John COUCH Sr and Mary "Polly" BOONE were:
    +6 i. Nancy Ann COUCH.
    +7 ii. Mary Polly COUCH.
    +8 iii. Sarah COUCH
    Martin COUCH was born in 1784 in New Rivers, Ashe, NC. He died in May 1856 in Hazard, Perry, Ky. He has reference number 56.
    Martin and Sarah are in Perry 1850 Census with two grandchildren, Rebecca and John Hall.
    Martin and Sarah are both 65. See Dickey Diary entry about his son Ira in 1898 Perry Co., KY. on Roll 2 and 3 at LDS Library. Pgs 2277-3391.
    According to the information I have, Martin was the only child of John Couch and Elizabeth James Campbell (widow [or ex-wife?] of Patrick Campbell). Information from Hallibee Anderson Couch proves that Martin married Sarah Hall and that Sarah was the d/o John Hall, SR of VA. Hallibee also said that Sarah had brother named Thomas. I have extensive info in my files to back up these claims. Info is filed under Hash and Hall. Death date is from Defeated Creek Diary in Perry County Newsletter AUG. 1995 edition.

    Monday, September 24, 2012

    Top Ten Koch Facts

    APRIL 10, 2012 3:35PM
    Rate: 19 Flag
    Co-authored by Jesse Lava
    Everyone seems to be investigating Charles and David Koch lately, with exposés of their corrupt political behavior popping up in places like the New Yorker, AlterNet, ThinkProgress, and Brave New Foundation’s film Koch Brothers Exposed. Naturally, the billionaire brothers don’t like the attention, so they’re responding to it by smearing the activists and journalists. In their panic, they have now taken out Google ads attacking me and plastered an ominous image of my eyes on their website, like so:

    They made me look like Emperor Palpatine. But who’s really representing the Dark Side here? The truth is that the billionaire brothers bankrolling the conservative movement are using their wealth in a way that should be terrifying to anyone who thinks democracy is about more than pulling a lever every two years and letting rich folks take care of the rest.

    Accordingly, here are 10 facts that every American should know about who the Kochs are and what they’re doing to our country.

    1. Koch Industries, which the brothers own, is one of the top ten polluters in the United States — which perhaps explains why the Kochs have given $60 million to climate denial groups between 1997 and 2010.

    2. The Kochs are the oil and gas industry’s biggest donors to the congressional committee with oversight of the hazardous Keystone XL oil pipeline. They and their employees gave more than $300,000 to members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee in 2010 alone.

    3. From 1998-2008, Koch-controlled foundations gave more than $196 million to organizations that favor polices that would financially enrich the two brothers. In addition, Koch Industries spent $50 million on lobbying and some $8 million in PAC contributions.

    4. The Koch fortune has its origins in engineering contracts with Joseph Stalin’s Soviet Union.

    5. The Kochs are suing to take over the Cato Institute, which has accused the Kochs of attempting to destroy the group’s identity as an independent, libertarian think and align it more closely with a partisan agenda.

    6. A Huffington Post source who was at a three-day retreat of conservative billionaires said the Koch brothers pledged to donate $60 million to defeat President Obama in 2012 and produce pledges of $40 million more from others at the retreat.

    7. Since 2000, the Kochs have collected almost $100 million in government contracts, mostly from the Department of Defense.

    8. Koch Industries has an annual production capacity of 2.2 billion pounds of the carcinogen formaldehyde. The company has worked to keep it from being classified as a carcinogen even though David Koch is a prostate cancer survivor.

    9. The Koch brothers’ combined fortune of roughly $50 billion is exceeded only by that of Bill Gates in the United States.

    10. The Senate Select Committee on Indian Affairs accused Koch Oil of scheming to steal $31 million of crude oil from Native Americans. Although the company claimed it was accidental, a former executive in this operation said Charles Koch had known about it and had responded to the overages by saying, “I want my fair share, and that’s all of it.”

    That last quote — “I want my fair share, and that’s all of it” — encapsulates the unbridled greed driving the Kochs’ political activism and business dealings. Democracy cannot thrive with so much power being in the hands of men like this. If we care about democracy, we have to work to take it back.

    T. Boone Pickens Calls Koch Brothers Biggest Deterrent to U.S. Energy Policy

    Energy | |

    T. Boone Pickens Calls Koch Brothers Biggest Deterrent to U.S. Energy Policy

    It's pretty amazing to think that just 2 men are responsible for holding an entire country - the US - back from being able to implement a responsible energy policy.
    Even Mexico and Peru have one, but not the US.
    In an interview this week with Yahoo's Daily Ticker, T. Boone Pickens says his biggest concern right now is that the US doesn't have an energy policy and he points directly at the Koch Bros as the reason.
    "The biggest deterrent to an energy plan in America is Koch Industries," he says. "They do not want an energy plan for America because they have the cheapest natural gas price they've ever had, and they're in the fertilizer business and they're in the chemical business. So their margins are huge. And they do not want you to have an energy plan, because if you had a plan, then natural gas prices would come up."
    Germany, on other other hand, can decarbonize with renewables because "We Don't Have the ... Koch Brothers," said a German State Minister. He referred to their lobbying for fossil fuels and against clean energy, and its spending on climate science disinformation through the front group Americans for Prosperity. They have outspent even ExxonMobil.
    Meanwhile, another Koch Bros-backed group, The Heartland Institute, has launched one of the most offensive billboard campaigns in U.S. history, reports the Guardian.
    It compares people who accept the facts of climate science, including journalists who report on it accurately, to Charles Manson, the Unabomber, and Osama Bin Laden.
    Heartland is holding a Climate Change "Reality" Conference later this month in Chicago to further spin their misinformation campaign.
    General Motors and AT&T pulled their support of Heartland, but State Farm and Microsoft, along with many others are still there including Eli Lilly & Co., GlaxoSmithKline, Nucor, Pfizer, and Time Warner Cable.
    Why did Heartland feature Charles Manson, the Unabomber, and Osama Bin Laden.these people on its billboards?
    Here's their answer (which is on the conference website along with the billboard proudly displayed):
    Because what these murderers and madmen have said differs very little from what spokespersons for the United Nations, journalists for the "mainstream" media, and liberal politicians say about global warming....
    The point is that believing in global warming is not "mainstream," smart, or sophisticated. In fact, it is just the opposite of those things. Still believing in man-made global warming - after all the scientific discoveries and revelations that point against this theory - is more than a little nutty. In fact, some really crazy people use it to justify immoral and frightening behavior.
    The people who still believe in man-made global warming are mostly on the radical fringe of society. This is why the most prominent advocates of global warming aren't scientists. They are murderers, tyrants, and madmen.
    Wow - you can't make this stuff up!!
    Photo by Steve Jurvetson/flickr/Creative Commons
    Reprinted with permission from

    Wednesday, September 19, 2012

    Romney’s Breakfast of Billionaires

    Published: Wednesday 19 September 2012

    Friday, Governor Mitt Romney had breakfast with billionaires.
    JOHN PAULSON, Paul Singer and Ken Langone have dropped more than a million dollars each into the Romney “Super-PAC” Restore Our Future. As Butch said to Sundance, “Who ARE these guys?”

    Singer's known as "The Vulture" on Wall Street. Langone's database company came up with the list 
     of innocent Black voters that Katherine Harris wiped off the voter rolls of Florida in 2000. But who is Paulson, a guy so dark and devious he doesn't even have a nick-name?

    I tried to join them ("Sorry, sir") just to ask why Romney was chowing down with the nation's most notorious billionaires and ballot bandits.
    Here is just a bit about Breakfast Billionaire #3: John Paulson from my new book, Billionaires & Ballot Bandits: How to Steal an Election in 9 Easy Steps—An investigation of Karl Rove, the Koch Gang and their Buck-Buddies. There's a comic book inside by Ted Rall with an introduction by Bobby Kennedy Jr. Get it here now.
    It was just released today and already hit NUMBER ONE NON-FICTION PAPERBACK in the USA. (Barnes & Noble)
    In August 2007, billionaire John Paulson walked into Goldman Sachs, the investment bank, with a billion-dollar idea. Paulson’s brainstorm had all the elements that Goldman found enchanting: a bit of fraud, a bit of flimflam, and lots and lots of the ultimate drug: OPM—Other Peoples’ Money.
    Paulson’s scheme was simple. Paulson, a much followed hotshot hedge-fund manager, would announce that he was betting big on the recovery of the U.S. housing market. He was willing to personally insure that billions of dollars of shaky subprime mortgages, like the ones dumped on Detroit, would never go into default.
    Now, all Goldman had to do was line up some suckers with more money than sense, some big European banks that handled public pension funds, and get them to put up several billion dollars to join with Paulson to insure these shaky mortgages. Paulson, to lure the “marks” into betting the billions, would pretend to put $200 million into the investment himself.
    But, in fact, Paulson would be betting against those very mortgages. Paulson himself was the secret beneficiary of the “insurance” on the mortgages. When the housing market went bust, Paulson collected from the duped banks and they didn't even know it. 
    And Goldman would get a $15 million fee, or more, for lining up the sheep for the fleecing.
    Goldman provided Paulson with a 29 year old kid, a French neophyte, to play the shill, making presentations to the European buyers with a fancy, 28-page “flip-book” about the wonderful, secure set of home mortgages the “clients” would be buying.
    Article image
    The young punk that Goldman put on the case texted a friend (in French — mais oui! —about the inscrutable “monstruosités”) while he was in the meeting right as Paulson was laying on the bullshit.
    The carefully selected bag of sick mortgages was packaged up into bundles totaling several billion dollars. To paint this turd gold, Paulson and Goldman brought in the well-respected risk-management arm of ACA Capital. Paulson personally met with ACA and gave them jive that he himself was investing in the insurance (as opposed to investing against the insurance).
    Secretly, Paulson personally designed the package of mortgages to load it up heavily with losers, concentrating on adjustable rate mortgages, given to those with low credit scores, while culling out high-quality loans given by West Coast banker Wells Fargo. ACA, thinking Paulson was helping them pick the good stuff, put their valuable seal of approval on the mortgage packages, though they were quite nervous about their “reputation.” (But that’s what happens when you go out with bad boys.)
    The mortgages in each package were dripping dreck—but with the ACA/Goldman stamp, Moody’s and Standard & Poors gave the insurance policies a AAA rating.
    European banks that hold government pension investments snapped up the AAA-rated junk.
    In August 2008, over one million foreclosures resulted in the Goldman mortgage securities losing 99% of their value. The Royal Bank of Scotland, left holding the bag, wrote a check to Goldman Sachs for just short of one billion ($840,909,090). Goldman did the honorable thing . . . and turned over the money to Paulson (after taking their slice).
    Don’t worry about the Royal Bank of Scotland. The British taxpayers and Bank of England covered its loss, taking over the bleeding bank.
    And here’s the brilliance of it: when it came out that Goldman and other mortgage backed securities were simply hot steaming piles of manure, their value plummeted further and the mortgage market, already wounded, now collapsed—and mortgage defaults accelerated nationwide. The result was that as the market plummeted, Paulson’s profits skyrocketed: his hedge fund pulled in $3.5 billion and Paulson put over a billion of it in his own pocket.
    With Paulson skinning some of Europe’s leading banks for billions, there was a bit of a diplomatic and legal dustup. The SEC investigated, confirmed in detail Paulson’s scam and sued the kid at Goldman who acted as Paulson’s assistant, the one who couldn’t even follow the complex deal. Goldman paid a fine, but never admitted any wrongdoing.

    And Paulson received . . . a tax break.

    Robert Pratt, a UAW member I met in Detroit, and several million others, lost their homes, including a Saudi prince who, in the recession, had to sell his Vail, Colorado, home ... to Paulson for just $45 million.
    But now the bandit billionaire had a bit of problem. With $3.5 billion of ill-gotten lucre in his pocket, he needed something else in his pocket: politicians who would protect the tax dodge and keep the SEC enforcement dogs on a tight leash. Paulson wasn’t alone in profiteering from the savaging of the mortgage market. There was his billionaire buddy Paul Singer, known on Wall Street as “The Vulture.” Together they launched the super-PAC Restore Our Future with a check for one million each. They asked Bill Koch to throw in some change. Koch did: $2 million.

    To restore the billionaires' future, the super-PAC's first order of business was to ally with Karl Rove. "Turdblossom," as George Bush called his mastermind Rove, had created a massive database on Americans, “DataTrust,” which works with a second massive database, “Themis,” funded by two other Koch Brothers, Charles and David.

    The S&L Crisis: A Chrono-Bibliography

    [NOTE: This chronology and bibliography is provided solely for informational purposes. The inclusion or exclusion of a source constitutes neither an endorsement nor a rejection by the FDIC of the opinions expressed in that source.]

    General Books and Articles

    Causes of the S&L Crisis

    Charles Keating and Lincoln Savings and Loan

    Criminal Activity Associated with S&L Failures

    Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act of 1980

    Deregulation of the S&Ls

    Financial Institutions Reform Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA)

    Garn - St Germain Depository Institutions Act of 1982

    Interest Rate Vulnerability

    Southwest Plan

    State Deposit Insurance Funds - Ohio and Maryland

    Taxation and Accounting bibliography

    A basic bibliography to provide an overview of the S&L Crisis.

    Background materials for understanding what led to the S&L Crisis.

    Details on one of the costliest S&L failures that involved 5 U.S. Senators.

    The goods on specific criminal investigations of S&L owners and directors.

    Details on the 1980 law (DIDMCA) that eased the distinctions among savings institutions.

    Working papers and analysis covering the deregulation of the S&L industry that led to the crisis.

    The law enacted in August, 1989, to bail out the S&L crisis and create the Resolution Trust Corporation.

    Analyses of the 1982 law that allowed S&L's to diversify their activities with the view of increasing profits.

    Bibliography for understanding S&L interest rates, and S&L vulnerability during this time period.

    The plan to consolidate and package insolvent Texas S&Ls and sell them to the highest bidder.

    S&L failures in Ohio and Maryland and the end of the State Deposit Insurance Funds/

    Understanding the tax and accounting rules for S&L's

    Market interest rates fluctuate with increasing intensity and S&Ls experience difficulty with each interest rate rise. Interest rate ceilings prevent S&Ls from paying competitive interest rates on deposits. Thus, every time the market interest rates rise, substantial amounts of funds are withdrawn by consumers for placement in instruments with higher rates of return. This process of deposit withdrawal ("disintermediation") and the subsequent deposit influx when rates rise ("reintermediation") leaves S&Ls highly vulnerable. Concurrently, money market funds become a source of competition for S&L deposits. S&Ls are additionally restricted by not being allowed to enter into business other than accepting deposits and granting home mortgage loans.

    1967--State of Texas approves major liberalization of S&L powers. Property development loans of up to 50% of net worth are allowed. 1972--Hunt Commission recommendations would have created federal savings banks to replace S&Ls. The banks would have had additional authority to make commercial loans and invest in commercial paper.

    1973--FINE Study would have granted same powers for S&Ls as for banks, including checking accounts. Also recommends consolidation of the regulators. Interest rate insurance was recommended if S&Ls are to remain primarily involved in housing finance.

    1978--Financial Institutions Regulatory and Interest Rate Control Act of 1978 enacted. Weak version of previous recommendations. Allows S&Ls to invest up 5% of assets in each of land development, construction, and education loans.
    1979--Doubling of oil prices. Inflation moves into double digits for second time in five years.

    1980-1982   Statutory and regulatory changes give the S&L industry new powers in the hopes of their entering new areas of business and subsequently returning to profitability. For the first time, the government approves measures intended to increase S&L profits as opposed to promoting housing and homeownership.

    March, 1980--Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act (DIDMCA) enacted. The law is a Carter Administration initiative aimed at eliminating many of the distinctions among different types of depository institutions and ultimately removing interest rate ceiling on deposit accounts. Authority for federal S&Ls to make ADC (acquisition, development, construction) loans is expanded. Deposit insurance limit raised to $100,000 from $40,000. This last provision is added without debate. November, 1980--Federal Home Loan Bank Board reduces net worth requirement for insured S&Ls from 5 to 4 percent of total deposits. Bank Board also removes limits on the amounts of brokered deposits an S&L can hold.
    August, 1981--Tax Reform Act of 1981 enacted. Provides powerful tax incentives for real-estate investment by individuals. This legislation helps create a "boom" in real estate and contributes to over-building.
    September, 1981--Federal Home Loan Bank Board permits troubled S&Ls to issue "income capital certificates" that are purchased by FSLIC and included as capital. Rather than showing that an institution is insolvent, the certificates make it appear solvent.
    1982-1985   Reductions in the Bank Board's regulatory and supervisory staff. In 1983, a starting S&L examiner is paid $14,000 a year. The average examiner has only two years on the job. Examiner salaries are paid through OMB, not the Bank Board. During this period of supervisory and examination retraction, industry growth increases. Industry assets increase by 56% between 1982 and 1985. 40 Texas S&Ls triple in size between 1982 and 1986; many of them grow by 100% each year. California S&Ls follow a similar pattern.
    January, 1982--Federal Home Loan Bank Board reduces net worth requirement for insured S&Ls from 4 to 3 percent of total deposits. Additionally, S&Ls are allowed to meet the low net worth standard not in terms of generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), but of even more liberal regulatory accounting principles (RAP). April, 1982--Bank Board eliminates restrictions on minimum numbers of S&L stock holders. Previously, it required at least 400 stock holders of which at least 125 had to be from "local community", with no individual owning more than 10% of stock and no "controlling group" more than 25%. Bank Board's new ownership regulation would allow a single owner. Purchases of S&Ls were made easier by allowing buyers to put up land and other real estate, as opposed to cash.
    December, 1982--Garn - St Germain Depository Institutions Act of 1982 enacted. This Reagan Administration initiative is designed to complete the process of giving expanded powers to federally chartered S&Ls and enables them to diversify their activities with the view of increasing profits. Major provisions include: elimination of deposit interest rate ceilings; elimination of the previous statutory limit on loan to value ratio; and expansion of the asset powers of federal S&Ls by permitting up to 40% of assets in commercial mortgages, up to 30% of assets in consumer loans, up to 10% of assets in commercial loans, and up to 10% of assets in commercial leases.
    December, 1982--In response to the massive defections of state chartered S&Ls to the federal system, Nolan Bill passes in California. Allows California-chartered S&Ls to invest 100% of deposits in any kind of venture. Similar plans adopted in Texas and Florida.
    1983--Lower market interest rates return many S&Ls to health. 35% of institutions, however, still sustain losses. 9% of all S&Ls (representing 10% of industry assets) are insolvent by GAAP standards.
    March, 1983--Edwin Gray becomes Chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board. Beginning in 1984 and continuing throughout his tenure, regulatory and supervisory measures passed by the Bank Board begin the reversing of deregulation.
    November, 1983--Bank Board raises net worth requirement for newly chartered S&Ls to 7%.
    March, 1984--Failure of Empire Savings of Mesquite, TX. "Land flips" and other criminal activities are a pattern at Empire. This failure would eventually cost the taxpayers approximately $300 million.
    April, 1984--Bank Board moves jointly with the FDIC to attempt to eliminate deposit insurance for brokered deposits. Federal court rejects this attempt in mid-1984 as overstepping statutory limits.
    July, 1984--Bank Board requires S&L management to adopt policies and procedures for managing interest rate risk.
    January, 1985--Bank Board limits the amount of brokered deposits to 5% of deposits at FSLIC insured institutions failing to meet their net worth requirements. Bank Board also limits direct investment (equity securities, real estate, service corporations, and operating subsidiaries) to the greater of 10% of assets or twice the S&L's net worth, provided the institution meets regulatory net worth.
    March, 1985--Ohio bank holiday. Anticipated failure of Home State Savings Bank of Cincinnati, OH and possible depletion of Ohio state deposit insurance fund cause Governor Celeste to close Ohio S&Ls. Eventually, those that can qualify for federal deposit insurance are allowed to reopen.
    May, 1985--S&L failures in Maryland eventually cause loss to state deposit insurance fund and Maryland taxpayers of $185 million. Ohio and Maryland S&L failures helped kill state deposit insurance funds.
    July, 1985--Chairman Gray begins transfer of federal examiners to the twelve regional Federal Home Loan Banks so that they are no longer overseen by OMB and their salaries are paid directly by the Bank Board system.
    August, 1985--Only $4.6 billion in FSLIC insurance fund. Chairman Gray tries to gain support for recapitalizing FSLIC on Capitol Hill. In 1986, GAO estimates the loss to the insurance fund to be around $20 billion.
    December, 1985--Bank Board allows S&L examiners to "classify" questionable loans and other assets for the purpose of requiring loan loss reserves.
    1986-1989   Compounding of losses as insolvent institutions are allowed to remain open and grow, allowing ever increasing losses to accumulate.
    August, 1986--Bank Board raises net worth standard gradually to 6% with up to 2% points offset for reduced interest rate-risk. 1987--Losses at Texas S&Ls comprise more than one-half of all S&L losses nationwide, and of the 20 largest losses, 14 are in Texas. Texas economy in major recession: crude oil prices fall by nearly 50%, office vacancy is over 30%, and real estate prices collapse.
    January, 1987--GAO declares FSLIC fund insolvent by at least $3.8 billion. Recapitalization has stalled on Capitol Hill until now by claims of powerful S&L lobbyists that Bank Board regulations are too harsh and arbitrary.
    February, 1987--Bank Board requires prior supervisory approval for S&Ls making direct investment in excess of 2.5 times their tangible capital.
    April, 1987--Edwin Gray ends his term as chairman of Federal Home Loan Bank Board in June. Before his departure, he is summoned to the office of Sen. Dennis DeConcini. DeConcini, with four other Senators (John McCain, Alan Cranston, John Glenn, and Donald Riegle) question Gray about the appropriateness of Bank Board investigations into Charles Keating's Lincoln Savings and Loan. All five senators, who have received campaign contributions from Keating, would become known as the "Keating Five". The subsequent Lincoln failure is estimated to have cost the taxpayers over $2 billion.
    May, 1987--Bank Board begins phasing out the remains of the liberal RAP accounting standards. S&Ls must conform to GAAP accounting standards, as banks do. Effective date of this rule postponed by new Chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board, M. Danny Wall, to 1/1/1989.
    August, 1987--Competitive Equality Banking Act of 1987 enacted. The Act authorizes $10.8 billion recapitalization of the FSLIC with only $3.75 billion authorized in any 12-month period. Also contains forbearance measures designed to postpone or prevent S&L closures.
    February, 1988--Bank Board introduces the "Southwest Plan" to consolidate and package insolvent Texas S&Ls and sell them to the highest bidder. The strategy is to resolve insolvencies quickly while conserving scarce cash for FSLIC. The Bank Board uses a number of strategies to pay for the difference between assets and liabilities of the failed institutions: FSLIC notes, tax incentives, and income, capital value and yield guarantees. The Bank Board disposes of 205 S&Ls through the Southwest Plan with assets of $101 billion.
    November, 1988--George Bush elected President. S&L problem not part of election debate.
    1989--President Bush unveils S&L bailout plan in February. In August, Financial Institutions Reform Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA). FIRREA abolishes the Federal Home Loan Bank Board and FSLIC, switches S&L regulation to newly created Office of Thrift Supervision. Deposit insurance function shifted to the FDIC. A new entity, the Resolution Trust Corporation is created to resolve the insolvent S&Ls.
    Other major provisions of FIRREA include: $50 billion of new borrowing authority, with most financed from general revenues and the industry; meaningful net worth requirements and regulation by the OTS and FDIC; allocation funds to the Justice Department to help finance prosecution of S&L crimes. Additional bank crime legislation the next year (i.e., the Crime Control Act of 1990) mandates a study by the National Commission on Financial Institution Reform, Recovery and Enforcement to uncover the causes of the S&L crisis, and come up with recommendations to prevent any repetition.