Posted by: Debby Durkee | August 3, 2010

Rangel’s real crime.

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Here’s Rangle’s real crime.

Liberalism is about destruction. It lives by politics and by sucking the life out of everything it comes in contact with. This is illustrated well by Charlie Rangel’s story and Maxine Waters’ story. In both cases things they have done (or not done) have left in their wake destruction, and who have they really helped? You be the judge. The first story is about Rangel and is written by John Podhoretz in the New York Post. He writes that many of Rangel’s infractions are minor, although all together they mount up to an “above the law” mentality. Podhoretz says even that isn’t his greatest crime.

Well, the game is all but over for (Charlie) Rangel now, and there’s a glaring irony in the fact that he has been brought so low by these relatively minor infractions.

For the fact is Rangel has a great deal to answer for. He has been the dominant political actor for four decades in the nation’s most important African-American community. Yet he deserves little or no credit for the stunning upturn in Harlem’s fortunes over the last decade.

But he does deserve some blame for the economic misery and stagnation that was Harlem’s lot for the first 25 years of his DC tenure.

He helped build a patchwork of organizations and nonprofits through which public money from Washington and Albany and City Hall was supposed to be delivered to the people of Harlem. In case after case, that money enriched the groups and left Harlem fallow.

He was the guiding force behind the Harlem Urban Development Corporation, a state agency that spent $100 million over the course of 23 years before it was folded into a larger entity in 1995. Two years later, a shocking audit revealed, in the words of former state official William Stern, that it “accomplished absolutely nothing — except [for] the people who ran it . . . HUDC treated public money as one big private slush fund.” Snip –

…The destruction and marginalization of Rangel’s many cream-skimming groups — the HUDC, the Apollo Foundation and the East Harlem Abyssinian Triangle among them — was vital to getting real, honest, private-sector development going in Harlem.

Once it became clear that there was another path for the private sector that didn’t go directly through Rangel or his associates, Harlem changed for the better.

These types of stories truly sicken me, not just for the lack of improvement in his district for years, but also for keeping his constituents ignorant of the magnitude of his failings and still getting elected year after year. Read all of Podhoretz here:  http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/rangel_real_crime_luundJwSXAM9EtwPHpyEoL

  

Maxine Waters and minority privilege.

This story by Stephen Spruiell of National Review Online pinpoints the politics of race/minorities and how destructive that is not only to the pocketbooks of the American taxpayer, but also to the thinking of those politicians who continue to promote it. Spruiell says the larger story “illustrates how such morbid racialism corrupts politics and politicians.”

(Maxine) Waters intervened to secure for OneUnited a meeting with the Treasury Department officials in charge of deciding which banks would get capital injections from the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program, and OneUnited subsequently received a $12 million allocation. To the extent that Waters’ intervention was the key to OneUnited’s receiving the money, and that the money was the key to the health of Waters’ husband’s investment, Waters likely violated a federal injunction against “taking any official actions for the prospect of personal gain for themselves or anyone else.”

The larger story here is the one I wrote about last week with regard to the Small Business Lending Fund, a $30 billion TARP-like capital program that the Obama administration is pushing Congress to pass. This program threatens to further corrupt and politicize the banking sector in ways that the Waters case illustrates perfectly…

Rep. Barney Frank (D., Mass.) joined Waters in intervening on behalf of the Boston-based OneUnited. The bank did not appear to be a good candidate for TARP funds. TARP was ostensibly meant to shore up well capitalized, responsible banks hit by the credit crunch. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, OneUnited “had seen most of its capital evaporate. Moreover, it was under attack from its regulators for allegations of poor lending practices and executive-pay abuses, including owning a Porsche for its executives’ use.”

Frank justified his intervention by pointing to the source of OneUnited’s losses: Fannie and Freddie stock. “I did feel that it was important to frankly try and save them since it was federal action that put them into the dumper,” Frank told the Journal. Frank was referring to the Treasury Department’s decision to seize the companies, as if they would have otherwise been fine. Actually, it was Fannie and Freddie’s own recklessness that put them in the dumper…

Waters has justified her intervention by arguing that she has a long history of advocacy on behalf of minority-owned banks…

These two statements by Frank and Waters are exhibits A and B in the case against creating more TARP-like programs, such as the Small Business Lending Fund. In the first one, Frank argues that a reckless bank deserves special treatment because, through its large investments in Fannie and Freddie, it aided the government in carrying out a reckless policy. In the second one, Waters justifies her improper intervention and argues away her financial interest in the outcome by arguing that OneUnited is a minority-owned bank, and thus deserves special treatment such as the intervention she provided.

Spruiell points out that other community banks saw how OneUnited was treated and want to get in on the act. They want the same “get-out-of-jail-free card.” Once again, this Small Business Lending Fund would be privatizing profits and socializing losses (leaving American taxpayers with the bill.) Similar thinking is what got is where we are today in the United States – on the hook for underwater mortgages and banks forced to do “politically correct” lending at the taxpayer’s ultimate expense. Who thinks this is a good idea? Idiots do. Read all of Spruiell here: http://article.nationalreview.com/438947/a-free-pass-for-politically-correct-banks/stephen-spruiell

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Responses

  1. When did public service go from being a servant of the people to an above the law mentality? It appears we have far to many government programs, past and present, which accomplish nothing but to enrich the people who run them. These are two great examples of why the private sector, with all its warts, is still the best way to allocate money to worthwhile endeavors.

    • When you look around at Congressmen (and women) who go into politics without much (Waters was a welfare mother) and come out on the other side as millionnaires, it truly is time to drain the swamp of these people who suck the life out of the American taxpayer for their own gain.


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