Daily Archives: May 12, 2010

Fannie + Freddie = Red Ink by Pete the Banker

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were major contributors to the housing bubble and ensuing real estate capital market collapse of 2007.  The Obama Administration and Democrat Congress have been pushing for financial reform for over a year and yet the pending Financial Reform Bill does nothing to reform either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac who have consumed more TARP funds than any other failed entity with the exception of AIG. 
Freddie Mac announced a $6.7B quarterly loss and request of an additional $10.7B capital draw from the Treasury on Thursday.   Monday morning Fannie Mae announced an $11.5 Billion loss and the intent to draw another $8.4 Billion of TARP funds from Treasury.  

The amount drawn from Treasury TARP by both Fannie and Freddie now approaches $150 Billion while actual loss estimates by most experts’ far exceed even their capital draws from the Treasury (last Fall projected losses were close to $300 Billion).  In part these recent quarter losses are the result of accounting changes, FASB 166 and 167, requiring formerly off balance sheet assets (securitized mortgages for sale) to be accounted for by the two entities.  However, these losses also reflect significantly worsening delinquency and foreclosure problems at both firms. (here)   And remember, the Obama Administration essentially gave the former Government Sponsored Enterprises an open credit line to the Treasury last Christmas Eve.
 
McCain, Gregg and other Republicans have increasing expressed over frustration over the Administration’s dithering in reform of the Government Entities and are so far unsuccessfully are attempting to add amendments to the Financial Reform Bill.  Is the Administration really concerned with true financial reform or are they simply trying to exert more exhaustive control over the nation’s private banking system?  
While I am sure we can all rest more easily tonight knowing that the current legislation does heavily regulate unsecured lenders like payday loan and pawn shops, how will it avert future capital market crises? Fannie and Freddie in combination with the FHA now account for over 80% of all home loans and a majority of all recent home loan modifications, loans that display exceptionally high risk profiles when compared to historical real estate underwriting standards. 
Isn’t it time for the Administration and Congress to truly reform of the Financial System rather than simply providing ideological pabulum to their special interest contributors and generating headlines amongst the seemingly comatose mass media outlets?  Why is the Administration actively avoiding reform of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac?
 
Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Sam 3: Police 0 SAM ADAMS BLOWS OUT SALTZMAN AND SIZER *****WITH UPDATE**** What Happened to the Money????

Portland Mayor Sam Adams has blown out Rosie Sizer as Police Chief, blown out Dan Saltzman as Police Commissioner and installed Mike Reese as Police Chief all in one fell swoop today at high noon at City Hall.

Add to this tally the loss of Scott Westerman, the head of the Police Officers’ Union and what you have here is CUTTING OFF THE HEAD of Police leadership in the past month.
Let’s see: they’re plundering $20 million from PDC funds for Milwaukie Light Rail and they don’t have enough money for the cops?

Rees Lloyd notes:

Adequate funds exist for funding our Portland police: The City provides $1.4-million annually in taxpayer-funds to the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO), rhymes with ACORN. That $1.4-million is should be used fund the police department protecting the city, rather than a feel-good liberal gift of public funds to legal and illegal immigrants.

It should be recalled that in the failures and fiascos of health-care by government bureaucrats in the Swine Flu epidemic which President Obama called a “national emergency,” and in which school age kids were a “priority group,” that the first available vaccines to reach Portland  were rationed by the government bureaucrats first to IRCO — which then vaccinated the adult aliens, legal and illegal, who descended on IRCO to receive immunizations while Portland school kids, the “high risk group,” went without vaccinations. 

The Oregonian, ever so liberal, actually covered IRCO’s immunization of adult aliens, replete with photographs, without noting that Portland school kids went without vaccinations  while ever so considerate healthy adult immigrants, legal and illegally, rushed to line up for their free vaccinations at IRCO. 

Upon reading that, I contacted IRCO and asked how they determined who was a legal immigrant and who was illegal. IRCO answered it had no idea how many illegal aliens it vaccinated as it did not inquire. Thus, under government rationing,  the first to receive protection from Swine Flu were healthy, adult, aliens served by IRCO.  Meanwhile, parents could not immunize their children because  private physicians had no vaccines, the schools, which could have immunized all the kids quickly, went without vaccines, while the liberal takers of IRCO did not.

I objected to the medical director for Multnomah County for rationing based on race and the failure to provide shots for school kids. Indeed, the government rationed available political not medical grounds, keeping a full one-third of the vaccines for what they called their “clients,” e.g., illegal aliens, convicted felons in prison, etc.v What was evidenced  in the Swine Flu vaccine fiasco of healthcare by government, rationing by race and politics of what is to come with implementation of national socialist healthcare under the Obama regime.

IRCO by its very definition does not serve Americans or citizens. 

The law requires that every legal immigrant has a sponsor who guarantees that that legal immigrant will not become a financial burden on the public.

There is no justification for the Machiavellian Mayor Sam Adams, the morally challenged predatory homosexual molester of a teenage intern in the City Hall Mens Room, playing liberal race and ethnic politics by  handing over $1.4-million to IRCO, which admittedly provides absolutely no American citizens, but only non-citizens — including illegal aliens. 

Citizens deserve their taxes used for what should be the City’s primary concern: protecting the safety of its citizens by a fully-funded  Police Department, not one so underfunded that it will be laying off the officers which have just been fully trained to protect and serve Portland. There is $1.4-million immediately available for the Police Department, simply by terminating the handout to IRCO rather than police officers.

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Why Won’t Obama Golf With Limbaugh?

A story in the New York Post says that book author Zev Chafets asked Rush Limbaugh would he be willing to play golf with Barack Obama. Chafets asked, “You guys are both golfers. Would you play a round with the president and show the country that there are no hard feelings?”

Limbaugh answered, “He’s the president of the United States. If any president asked me to meet him, or play golf with him, I’d do it.”

Chafets extended such a request to the White House and received the reply, “Limbaugh can play with himself.”

Obama has held the now famous “beer summit” to settle a situation that could have spiraled out of control and has not only met with, but bowed before world leaders. He has indicated a willingness to sit down with known dictators who hold a hatred towards our country.

But, to play a round of golf with a fellow avid golfer and American citizen, showing the tensions between the right and the left can be cooled a bit, the reply is, “Limbaugh can play with himself?”

Limbaugh’s video comments HERE

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Misgivings of a Cold Case Juror… by "Joe the Juror"

Victoria notes: “Joe the Juror” has been sitting in this trial for weeks. He’s been so affected by this case that when he told me it was finally over I asked him to blog about it. Here’s his post. 
Is our justice system broken? Are we giving it our best shot and coming to the best verdict in our courtrooms given the rules of evidence? Or is the justice system failing due to simple human error?
I believe there is room for all these lines of thought.
For the past few weeks, I have been a member of a jury deciding the fate of murder suspect Shawntell Lamarr Moses in a Multnomah County courtroom. 
On December 8, 1995 , Kala Kim Peterson was brutally and horrifically murdered near Woodlawn Park , after being picked up as a prostitute.
Her boyfriend testified that she had turned to prostitution to feed her crack cocaine habit.
Please understand that her being a prostitute had no bearing on the decisions made in this case. I only offer it as a point of clarity as to why she was in the company of these two suspects.
One of the suspects, Dana Rankin admitted his part in the murder, and was proffered a plea agreement in exchange for his testimony against his second cousin Shawntell Moses.
The autopsy report in this case stated that Miss Peterson was stabbed multiple times.
In reality, it was far worse than this, and news reports were not completely forthcoming. The wounds inflicted on Miss Peterson were more than multiple and much more horrific.
Without going over the evidence in this case all over again, I can say that it was very difficult for some on the jury to find Mr. Moses guilty of murder for many different reasons.
I have to admit that my personal feeling was that Shawntell Moses was guilty of murder.
However, there were not enough people on the jury who felt the same way.
I was not alone in my belief, but there were simply not enough votes to find him guilty of any charge.
Since this was a cold case, it is ironic that the Portland Police Bureau and our city council are now considering disbanding the cold case squad and possibly turning it into a completely volunteer operation.
Shawntell Moses and his second cousin were turned in to Crime Stoppers by Mrs. Heather Moses, Shawntell’s wife. It then fell into the hands of the Portland Police Bureau’s cold case unit.
After speaking with my fellow jurors after the trial, there was speculation that this case could be used as an example for the Police Bureau and the city council to alter or abandon the cold case unit altogether.
With 300 unsolved murders in the Portland area since the 1970s, it is completely unconscionable to think we should go backwards when it comes to solving ANY murder.
Despite the lack of direct evidence in our case, and conflicting and unbelievable testimony from certain witnesses, we should not throw in the towel and give up on closing ANY murder case simply because of money.
Despite my personal feelings regarding the guilt or innocence of Mr. Moses in this case, I still feel horrible that her family could not find complete closure regarding Kala Kim Peterson’s murder. This was a comment I read in news reports after the case was over with.
Yes, Dana Rankin will spend the next 24 years in prison for his part in Miss Peterson’s murder. He got credit for the past year that he has spent in jail.
Shawntell Moses got out of jail within hours of our verdict.
Is it fair? In my opinion…No.
Is it complete justice? It depends on your opinion and how you measure complete justice.
Does it please everyone? Of course not.
Is there a better system anywhere on our planet? I don’t believe so.
I can say this with certainty…..I will never forget Kala Kim Peterson, even though I never met her. I made certain that everyone in the jury room knew how I felt as well.
I also believe my fellow jurors will also remember her for a very long time.
But I also know that her family will miss her and will never forget what happened in this Multnomah County courtroom.
I believe every one of my fellow jurors was affected in some way after reviewing the horrific evidence, and listening to graphic testimony for the past few weeks.
I was not the only person complaining of lost sleep the past few weeks. Other jurors had various complaints as well.
Despite graphic and horrific images available on television in recent years, it is a completely different experience to view graphic images of a murder up close, and then listen to testimony that isn’t part of a dramatic television show.
In short, it is sickening to review evidence as a juror in a case like this, no matter how tough you think you are.   
I cannot speak for the judge in this case, but he viewed every piece of evidence and listened to all of the testimony as every member of the jury also had to.
Nobody is immune from the affects of viewing violent and horrific images and listening to testimony offered in this case.
I believe that all my fellow jurors, in some strange way, could also see the pain Miss Peterson endured before her death.
Is there complete closure for Kala Kim Peterson’s family? No.
Was this verdict the best we could come up with in this case? Given the fact that every juror’s opinion carries the same amount of weight, I cannot say we could have done better, despite my personal feelings.
Early on in jury selection, we were reminded of the old movie “Twelve Angry Men”.
In that courtroom, Henry Fonda was the lone juror who felt the suspect was not guilty. Eleven other jurors felt the suspect was guilty.
Henry Fonda convinced his 11 fellow jurors that the suspect in their case was not guilty.
Of course we were not on television. But we were twelve individuals with varying backgrounds and experiences and many different opinions.
Unless there are several people on a jury with a substantive bias that is undiscovered, it cannot be said that the verdicts could have been better or different.
If the Portland Police Bureau, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s office and the city council can learn anything from this case, it is that they can always do better, no matter what the circumstances.
Cold cases are not always a slam dunk and I can speculate they are NEVER EASY.
But that does not mean we should throw in the towel and give up on any important case.
I can say that many of my fellow jurors felt that there was plenty of blame to throw around when it came to the state proving the guilt of Mr. Moses.
My hope is that everyone can learn something new and move on. Of course I don’t expect Kala Kim Peterson’s family to move on any time soon.
Kala Kim Peterson will live on in the hearts and minds of many, many people, especially mine.
My hope and prayer is that change and improvement in our police and justice system can also be held in the hearts and minds of those who have any part of it.
Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Sam 3: Police 0 SAM ADAMS BLOWS OUT SALTZMAN AND SIZER *****WITH UPDATE**** What Happened to the Money????

Portland Mayor Sam Adams has blown out Rosie Sizer as Police Chief, blown out Dan Saltzman as Police Commissioner and installed Mike Reese as Police Chief all in one fell swoop today at high noon at City Hall.

Add to this tally the loss of Scott Westerman, the head of the Police Officers’ Union and what you have here is CUTTING OFF THE HEAD of Police leadership in the past month.
Let’s see: they’re plundering $20 million from PDC funds for Milwaukie Light Rail and they don’t have enough money for the cops?

Rees Lloyd notes:

Adequate funds exist for funding our Portland police: The City provides $1.4-million annually in taxpayer-funds to the Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization (IRCO), rhymes with ACORN. That $1.4-million is should be used fund the police department protecting the city, rather than a feel-good liberal gift of public funds to legal and illegal immigrants.

It should be recalled that in the failures and fiascos of health-care by government bureaucrats in the Swine Flu epidemic which President Obama called a “national emergency,” and in which school age kids were a “priority group,” that the first available vaccines to reach Portland  were rationed by the government bureaucrats first to IRCO — which then vaccinated the adult aliens, legal and illegal, who descended on IRCO to receive immunizations while Portland school kids, the “high risk group,” went without vaccinations. 

The Oregonian, ever so liberal, actually covered IRCO’s immunization of adult aliens, replete with photographs, without noting that Portland school kids went without vaccinations  while ever so considerate healthy adult immigrants, legal and illegally, rushed to line up for their free vaccinations at IRCO. 

Upon reading that, I contacted IRCO and asked how they determined who was a legal immigrant and who was illegal. IRCO answered it had no idea how many illegal aliens it vaccinated as it did not inquire. Thus, under government rationing,  the first to receive protection from Swine Flu were healthy, adult, aliens served by IRCO.  Meanwhile, parents could not immunize their children because  private physicians had no vaccines, the schools, which could have immunized all the kids quickly, went without vaccines, while the liberal takers of IRCO did not.

I objected to the medical director for Multnomah County for rationing based on race and the failure to provide shots for school kids. Indeed, the government rationed available political not medical grounds, keeping a full one-third of the vaccines for what they called their “clients,” e.g., illegal aliens, convicted felons in prison, etc.v What was evidenced  in the Swine Flu vaccine fiasco of healthcare by government, rationing by race and politics of what is to come with implementation of national socialist healthcare under the Obama regime.

IRCO by its very definition does not serve Americans or citizens. 

The law requires that every legal immigrant has a sponsor who guarantees that that legal immigrant will not become a financial burden on the public.

There is no justification for the Machiavellian Mayor Sam Adams, the morally challenged predatory homosexual molester of a teenage intern in the City Hall Mens Room, playing liberal race and ethnic politics by  handing over $1.4-million to IRCO, which admittedly provides absolutely no American citizens, but only non-citizens — including illegal aliens. 

Citizens deserve their taxes used for what should be the City’s primary concern: protecting the safety of its citizens by a fully-funded  Police Department, not one so underfunded that it will be laying off the officers which have just been fully trained to protect and serve Portland. There is $1.4-million immediately available for the Police Department, simply by terminating the handout to IRCO rather than police officers.

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Why Won’t Obama Golf With Limbaugh?

A story in the New York Post says that book author Zev Chafets asked Rush Limbaugh would he be willing to play golf with Barack Obama. Chafets asked, “You guys are both golfers. Would you play a round with the president and show the country that there are no hard feelings?”

Limbaugh answered, “He’s the president of the United States. If any president asked me to meet him, or play golf with him, I’d do it.”

Chafets extended such a request to the White House and received the reply, “Limbaugh can play with himself.”

Obama has held the now famous “beer summit” to settle a situation that could have spiraled out of control and has not only met with, but bowed before world leaders. He has indicated a willingness to sit down with known dictators who hold a hatred towards our country.

But, to play a round of golf with a fellow avid golfer and American citizen, showing the tensions between the right and the left can be cooled a bit, the reply is, “Limbaugh can play with himself?”

Limbaugh’s video comments HERE

Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Misgivings of a Cold Case Juror… by "Joe the Juror"

Victoria notes: “Joe the Juror” has been sitting in this trial for weeks. He’s been so affected by this case that when he told me it was finally over I asked him to blog about it. Here’s his post. 
Is our justice system broken? Are we giving it our best shot and coming to the best verdict in our courtrooms given the rules of evidence? Or is the justice system failing due to simple human error?
I believe there is room for all these lines of thought.
For the past few weeks, I have been a member of a jury deciding the fate of murder suspect Shawntell Lamarr Moses in a Multnomah County courtroom. 
On December 8, 1995 , Kala Kim Peterson was brutally and horrifically murdered near Woodlawn Park , after being picked up as a prostitute.
Her boyfriend testified that she had turned to prostitution to feed her crack cocaine habit.
Please understand that her being a prostitute had no bearing on the decisions made in this case. I only offer it as a point of clarity as to why she was in the company of these two suspects.
One of the suspects, Dana Rankin admitted his part in the murder, and was proffered a plea agreement in exchange for his testimony against his second cousin Shawntell Moses.
The autopsy report in this case stated that Miss Peterson was stabbed multiple times.
In reality, it was far worse than this, and news reports were not completely forthcoming. The wounds inflicted on Miss Peterson were more than multiple and much more horrific.
Without going over the evidence in this case all over again, I can say that it was very difficult for some on the jury to find Mr. Moses guilty of murder for many different reasons.
I have to admit that my personal feeling was that Shawntell Moses was guilty of murder.
However, there were not enough people on the jury who felt the same way.
I was not alone in my belief, but there were simply not enough votes to find him guilty of any charge.
Since this was a cold case, it is ironic that the Portland Police Bureau and our city council are now considering disbanding the cold case squad and possibly turning it into a completely volunteer operation.
Shawntell Moses and his second cousin were turned in to Crime Stoppers by Mrs. Heather Moses, Shawntell’s wife. It then fell into the hands of the Portland Police Bureau’s cold case unit.
After speaking with my fellow jurors after the trial, there was speculation that this case could be used as an example for the Police Bureau and the city council to alter or abandon the cold case unit altogether.
With 300 unsolved murders in the Portland area since the 1970s, it is completely unconscionable to think we should go backwards when it comes to solving ANY murder.
Despite the lack of direct evidence in our case, and conflicting and unbelievable testimony from certain witnesses, we should not throw in the towel and give up on closing ANY murder case simply because of money.
Despite my personal feelings regarding the guilt or innocence of Mr. Moses in this case, I still feel horrible that her family could not find complete closure regarding Kala Kim Peterson’s murder. This was a comment I read in news reports after the case was over with.
Yes, Dana Rankin will spend the next 24 years in prison for his part in Miss Peterson’s murder. He got credit for the past year that he has spent in jail.
Shawntell Moses got out of jail within hours of our verdict.
Is it fair? In my opinion…No.
Is it complete justice? It depends on your opinion and how you measure complete justice.
Does it please everyone? Of course not.
Is there a better system anywhere on our planet? I don’t believe so.
I can say this with certainty…..I will never forget Kala Kim Peterson, even though I never met her. I made certain that everyone in the jury room knew how I felt as well.
I also believe my fellow jurors will also remember her for a very long time.
But I also know that her family will miss her and will never forget what happened in this Multnomah County courtroom.
I believe every one of my fellow jurors was affected in some way after reviewing the horrific evidence, and listening to graphic testimony for the past few weeks.
I was not the only person complaining of lost sleep the past few weeks. Other jurors had various complaints as well.
Despite graphic and horrific images available on television in recent years, it is a completely different experience to view graphic images of a murder up close, and then listen to testimony that isn’t part of a dramatic television show.
In short, it is sickening to review evidence as a juror in a case like this, no matter how tough you think you are.   
I cannot speak for the judge in this case, but he viewed every piece of evidence and listened to all of the testimony as every member of the jury also had to.
Nobody is immune from the affects of viewing violent and horrific images and listening to testimony offered in this case.
I believe that all my fellow jurors, in some strange way, could also see the pain Miss Peterson endured before her death.
Is there complete closure for Kala Kim Peterson’s family? No.
Was this verdict the best we could come up with in this case? Given the fact that every juror’s opinion carries the same amount of weight, I cannot say we could have done better, despite my personal feelings.
Early on in jury selection, we were reminded of the old movie “Twelve Angry Men”.
In that courtroom, Henry Fonda was the lone juror who felt the suspect was not guilty. Eleven other jurors felt the suspect was guilty.
Henry Fonda convinced his 11 fellow jurors that the suspect in their case was not guilty.
Of course we were not on television. But we were twelve individuals with varying backgrounds and experiences and many different opinions.
Unless there are several people on a jury with a substantive bias that is undiscovered, it cannot be said that the verdicts could have been better or different.
If the Portland Police Bureau, the Multnomah County District Attorney’s office and the city council can learn anything from this case, it is that they can always do better, no matter what the circumstances.
Cold cases are not always a slam dunk and I can speculate they are NEVER EASY.
But that does not mean we should throw in the towel and give up on any important case.
I can say that many of my fellow jurors felt that there was plenty of blame to throw around when it came to the state proving the guilt of Mr. Moses.
My hope is that everyone can learn something new and move on. Of course I don’t expect Kala Kim Peterson’s family to move on any time soon.
Kala Kim Peterson will live on in the hearts and minds of many, many people, especially mine.
My hope and prayer is that change and improvement in our police and justice system can also be held in the hearts and minds of those who have any part of it.
Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com