Daily Archives: March 29, 2011

Rees Lloyd on "WELCOME HOME VIETNAM VETERANS DAY"

Eric Young photo

“Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day” observances will be held formally in many areas of the country today, March 30, informally in many other areas, and totally ignored in many if not most other areas, except in posts of veterans’ services organization like The American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and other VSO’s.


The U.S. House and Senate have by resolutions recognized March 30 as Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day annually. The observance began at the grass roots, as Americans began to remember and regret the way that Vietnam Veterans, who served honorably when their country called, were treated when they came home.

Many returning troops were vilified. Leftist demonstrators burned the American Flag and marched under the Viet Cong Flag and large photos of Ho Chi Minh, the leader of Communist Vietnam. Troops were called “baby killers,” “war criminals,” and were sometimes insulted and spit upon by self-righteous demonstrators of proclaiming their love of peace with snarls, raised fists, and epithets. 

Even heroes in Vietnam like Tommy Franks, who later would become General Tommy Franks and serve as allied commander in the war against terrorism in Iraq, was advised when he came home from Vietnam not to wear his uniform, as were most troops, due to the hatred that had been manufactured not just against the war, but against those sent to fight it.

The political atmosphere was poisoned by people like John Kerry and Jane Fonda. The wealthy and privileged daughter of movie star Henry Fonda, Jane, who first became famous taking her clothes off in the movie “Barbarella,” infamously aided and abetted the communist enemy by using her movie starlet celebrity to travel to Hanoi where, among other things, she posed with a big smile and a steel helmet at the helm of a communist anti-aircraft gun. Meanwhile, Americans were dying in battle, and P.O.W. pilots shot down by such guns like the legendary Bud Day, Admiral James Stockdale, Admiral Jeremiah Denton, John McCain, Leo Thorsness, Robbie Robinson, Everett Alvarez, Jr., the longest serving of all, and so many more, were being terribly tortured in the “Hanoi Hilton” by the communists to whom charming then-communist Jane gave fond, smiling, and self-righteous aid and comfort.

John Kerry, in his short four months on a Swift Boat in Vietnam, bragged that he would be the “second JFK from Massachusetts,” and brought along his own camcorder to film staged acts of daring do for the camera and voters back in liberal Mass. Kerry, as a leader of Vietnam Veterans Against The War, infamously gave self-promoting false testimony before the U.S. Congress of witnessing atrocities by American troops in Vietnam. That testimony, utterly false, garnered him national and international publicity.

However, when his successor in command of the Swift Boat, John E. O’Neil, outraged at Kerry’s lies, repeatedly and publicly challenged Kerry to provide names, dates, places, and other evidence that could verify Kerry’s charges against other troops, Kerry was able to provide absolutely no evidence.

After falsely tainting those who served in Vietnam as war criminals who committed atrocities, Kerry whose hypocrisy is exceeded only by his self-serving opportunism and political ambition, made his political career by citing his service in Vietnam, and hoping his disgusting false testimony would be forgotten. When Kerry became the Democrat Party nominee to challenge George Bush for President in 2004, his campaign, among other things, searched out and bought up every copy they could find of the book celebrating Kerry’s anti-war antics and testimony denigrating Vietnam troops before Congress.

Faced with the prospect of Kerry actually becoming commander-in-chief, John O’Neil co-authored with Jerome Corsi the best-selling book: “Unfit For Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry. O’Neil and Corsi detailed Kerry’s despicable, self-serving words and deed. Kerry and the Democrats condemned “Unfit For Command,” but were unable to refute the facts that O’Neil and Corsi exposed.

Although posturing as one who should be elected because he served, Kerry then zealously refused to make public his military service record with the same adamant refusal that current President Obama has refused to release his college records at Occidental College and even his birth certificate. Kerry blamed his loss to George Bush in major part on the Swift Boaters revelations. To this day Democrat leaders wring their hands and bemoan that Kerry was “Swift Boated.” Yet, also to this day, they have been unable to refute the facts alleged against Kerry in “Unfit For Command.” If you think that “Unfit For Command” was just a scurrilous hit piece full of rumor and innuendo, then I urge you to take the challenge: Read “Unfit For Command,” and then attempt to refute it. Kerry couldn’t refute the facts asserted, because the facts are true; and Kerry is “unfit for command.”

Indeed, not for nothing have the North Vietnamese Communists placed large photos of John Kerry and Jane Fonda in prominent display in their “War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City” in an exhibit honoring “heroes” who had helped them “win the war against the United States.”

The top communist General Giap has admitted that the communists would have collapsed after their defeat in the famed Tet Offensive, but for the fact of the acts of the so-called peace movement and the media which turned Americans against the war. Among those who provided such saving support for the communists were, Kerry, Fonda, and the media icon Walter Cronkite. The avuncular television anchor Cronkite, touted as the “most trusted man in America,” misperceived Tet as a victory of the communists. When Cronkite and publicly broadcast his opinion after Tet that the war could not be won, President Lyndon Johnson reportedly said that Cronkite’s broadcast statements, no matter how in accurate, meant that the war was “lost.” Giap said that the communists realized that all they had to do was to hold on long enough for the communists, socialists, and other supporters of the Vietnamese communists in the peace movement to turn the American people against the war. That happened. Congress cut off funding for the war in 1975, and the communists took Saigon, soon renamed Ho Chi Minh City.

It has been written that Vietnam War was one in which American troops won every battle, but lost the war. Adm. Jeremiah Denton, seven-years, seven-months a P.O.W. in Vietnam, second only to Everett Alvarez in time served as a P.O.W., strongly refutes the contention that the American military “lost” the Vietnam War.

SSG Robert Pilk, KIA 19 June, 1970
“The American military did not lose the Vietnam War — Congress lost the war, when it refused to fund the South Vietnamese forces to resist the communists,” he states. He makes a forceful argument concerning what was done, and what needs to be done, in the new epilogue to his book, “When Hell Was In Session,” detailing the inhumanity of the communists who unmercifully tortured American prisoners of war in complete violation of the Geneva Accords while Kerry, Fonda, Cronkite, and the leftist so-called peace movement gave the communists aid and comfort. WorldNetDaily Books has issued a new edition of Adm. Denton’s book.

Maj. General Patrick H. Brady (USA, ret.), a “dust off” helicopter ambulance pilot who rescued over 5,000 wounded in more than 2,500 combat missions and received the Medal of Honor in Vietnam, agrees with Admiral Denton’s assessment, and, in his book details what was ignored during and after the Vietnam War: What Gen. Brady calls the unprecedented “humanitarian acts of American troops in Vietnam.”

“No warriors have committed more humanitarian acts during war, and not just after war — building medical facilities and providing medical care, building schools and other community facilities for the Vietnamese civilians, committing countless acts of kindness –than did the men and women of the American armed forces in Vietnam. That is America’s victory in Vietnam,” states Gen. Brady. He details those humanitarian acts of those who fought in Vietnam, generally unknown to Americans in the Vietnam era and in this era, in his Book, “DEAD MEN FLYING: Victory in Viet Nam–The Legend of Dust Off, America’s Battlefield Angels.”

“The irony is,” Gen. Brady adds, “is that while the men and women of the American military committed more humanitarian acts in war than in any other war, no Americans who have served when our country called them to serve in war have been so shamed, degraded, vilified, when they came home not to a grateful nation, but a nation ungrateful for their service and sacrifice. That is a continuing shame.”

Some 58,000 Americans died in the Vietnam War. Many more suffered wounds, some of them terrible, life-changing wounds. Many, many continue to suffer today from the effects of Agent Orange, or post traumatic stress syndrome. As the saying goes, some gave all, all gave some.

Starting from a grassroots movement, March 30 is now being served in many areas, but not all, as “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day.” Take a moment. Call your local American Legion, VFW, or other veterans’ organization and find out what observances are being held.

Or just take a moment to thank a Vietnam veteran, and speak in a belated attitude of gratitude, words too long delayed, but much appreciated: “Welcome home.”

Best Buds
[Rees Lloyd is a longtime civil rights attorney, a Vietnam-era veteran, and a veterans activist.]

Midway between An Khe and Pleiku

April 1970 Sapper Attack                      
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Maher’s "Verbal Violence" Against Sarah Palin: Todd Palin, Please Come and Have a Chat With Him

I’d love to watch. If you missed the story see my previous post here and another update here. 
I don’t like speech codes, so called “hate crimes” legislation and so called “bullying laws,” but I believe that civil people can agree there are some things, actions and violent attitudes which result in you being excluded from polite society. Maher says he’s not sorry. Here. 
Maher has crossed the line. 
He needs to go. I hope you’ll stop watching his TV show, stop paying to see him and write to his employers to urge them to get rid of him.
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ILLEGAL ALIEN In State Tuition Bill PASSES Oregon State Senate. Call House Members NOW!! Reps 503 986 1400, Dems 503 986 1900

Text Size:  A-   A   A+  
House of Representatives Leadership:
Co-Speaker of the House Bruce Hanna(R-Roseburg)
Co-Speaker of the House Arnie Roblan(D-Coos Bay)
Not sure who your Representative is? Click here to find out.
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Rees Lloyd on Stolen Valor Act: Judge With Shady Past Determines Whose Lies Are Protected

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the most liberal and most reversed circuit in the country, has further fueled the fire and ire of Americans claiming a modern “judicial tyranny,” by the 9th Circuit’s recent refusal to grant a rehearing of its prior decision declaring the Stolen Valor Act an unconstitutional violation of “freedom of speech” under the First Amendment, thus effectively creating a “right to lie” about military service and receipt of the Medal of Honor and other medals of valor. (US v. Alvarez, No. 08-50345, Order Denying Petition For Panel Rehearing and Rehearing En Banc. March 21, 2011, accessible on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals website.).
The dissenting judges urged rehearing the Stolen Valor Act decision was wrongfully decided, and the resulting “right to lie” doctrine of the 9th Circuit imperils other laws criminalizing false speech. The dissenters point out, among other things, that the decision to declare the Stolen Valor Act unconstitutional “on its face” because it does not require a showing of “harm” to someone else, itself flies in the face of many statutes penalizing pure speech which do not require proof that someone was harmed thereby. Included among the many examples cited, are false statements by illegal aliens regarding their right to be in the country which lies are presently punishable as crimes under federal statutes. (18 U.S. Code §1015(a), as Judge Bybee pointed out in his original dissent. Think of the 19 Saudi Islamist terrorists who lied their way into America and attacked us on 9-11-2001; or the 12-20 million illegal alien Mexicans and others in America right now living lies to remain. Will there lies which do not harm any particular individual now be a matter of “freedom of speech” and thus uttered with impunity?

See the rest here. 

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Pete the Banker on Political Quid Pro Quo: Will Obama’s Wall Street Welfare Recipients Sign Their Gubmint Checks Back Over to Him in 2012?

Republicans are currently providing some badly needed oversight on the Money Center Banks and Wall Street Investment Bankers. The Obama Administration has provided little transparency on the extent of government aid to the industry or its relationship with several of the largest financial institutions. And by the way it looks, if you were ‘in’ with the Obama Administration, money poured your way:

[T]he concentration of the vast majority of PDFC funds was [to] … just six banks…98 percent of the funds lent by the PDFC program. (see more below)

Wall Street and the money center banks were the biggest recipients of Federal Government aid during 2007 and 2008.  

“The banking industry continues to recover from the 2007-2009 financial crisis but lending will need to pick up if progress is to continue, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp Chairman Sheila Bair said on Wednesday. Industry profits were up considerably from a year ago standing at $21.7 billion in the fourth quarter of 2010, which compares to a net loss of $1.8 billion a year ago, according to the quarterly banking report released by the agency.” Here.  

And as a result of the massive federal support and the spread between banks cost of funds and their return on invested funds,  

Source of graph here.

“…the largest 25 banks in the country are having a feast on the low borrowing costs that the Fed is maintaining (the FDIC reported that 95% of all bank profits in the fourth quarter of 2010 went to the largest banks in the United States ).” Here.

The top three Wall Street recipients of US Treasury and Federal Reserve funds and support during the crisis included Citigroup, Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley.  “Six of the largest financial firms all listed in the charts below accounted for $140 Billion in TARP money alone without accounting for massive support by the Federal Reserve and the FDIC.  “The surge has come after the five banks took a combined $135 billion from the Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program and borrowed billions more from the Federal Reserve’s emergency-lending facilities in late 2008 and early 2009 following the collapse of Lehman Bros. Holdings Inc. Since then, the firms have benefited from low interest rates and the Fed’s purchases of fixed-income Here.

These large firms were also the beneficiary of massive Federal Reserve support, “After you crunch the Primary Dealer Credit Facility (PDCF) numbers, you can see through the noise. What is revealed is this: The Fed’s overnight lending to primary dealers concentrated staggering sums of government cash in the hands of a tiny circle of financial institutions. The story of PDCF lending is the story of those few financial institutions that went on to become just six banks.
 
But the concentration of the vast majority of PDFC funds was far narrower than that. Institutions that ultimately went on to become just six banks—Bank of America, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Barclays, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan—received at total of about $8.78 trillion through the PDFC program. That $8.78 trillion figure represents over 98 percent of the funds lent by the PDFC program. Here.
 
Wall Street’s biggest investment banks, rebounding after a government bailout, have completed two of their most profitable years ever, buoyed by 2010 results likely to be the second-highest ever.  The major Investment Banking institutions listed in the charts below have increased their market share in the industry since 2007 based on investment banking fees (chart 1 and 2 below).  Likewise, the major Money Center Banks have increased their share of the market based on Demand Deposits (checking account deposits held shown in charts 3 and 4 below).  
 
Chart 1
Bloomberg 2010 Global League Table Rankings: Top 5
Equity and Equity-Linked Sales, Excluding Self-Led Offerings
Underwriter
Ranking
Market Share
Fees
Morgan Stanley
1
10.4%
$7.27B
JP Morgan Chase
2
8.5%
$5.97B
Goldman Sachs
3
8.2%
$5.71B
Bank Of America *
4
6.4%
$4.48B
Citigroup
5
5.4%
$3.77B
*Merrill Lynch taken over by Bank of America
In 2010, two years after the near collapse of the largest firms on Wall Street, the top five Investment Banking firms accounted for 38.9% of the industries’ market share.  Here.
Chart 2
Bloomberg 2007 Global League Table Rankings: Top 5
Equity and Equity-Linked Sales, Excluding Self-Led Offerings
Underwriter
Ranking
Market Share
Fees
Citigroup
1
7.9%
$6.88B
Goldman Sachs
2
7.7%
$6.66B
Morgan Stanley
3
7.3%
$6.36B
JP Morgan Chase
4
7.2%
$6.23B
Merrill Lynch
5
6.4%
$5.55B
 
In 2007 the top five firms accounted for only 36.5% of the industry, collecting $86.9 Billion in fees from merger and acquisition and underwriting of stocks/bonds.  Here.   They increased their market share dramatically while receiving both Treasury TARP funds and massive Federal Reserve support.

Below are charts for the largest Retail Banks in 2006 and 2010 as measured by Domestic Demand Deposits.  In the 2010 list only three of the top five retail banks survived the 2007 financial crisis.

Chart 3 – 2010 Retail Demand Deposits (FDIC Table Four)
Company  
Number of States with
Deposit Offices
Reported Number of
Deposit Offices
Domestic Demand Deposits
(Billions)
Share of Total
Domestic Deposits
%
Bank of America
Corporation
36
6,041
916.1
11.9%
Wells Fargo Company
40
6,586
750.4
9.8%%
JP Morgan Chase & Co
24
5,227
652.7
8.5%
Citigroup
15
1,023
307.3
4.0%
US Bank Corp
26
3,056
169.2
2.2%

Here.

Chart 4 2006 Retail Demand Deposits (FDIC Table 4)
Name of Company
Number of States with
Deposit Offices
Reported Number of
Deposit Offices
Domestic Deposits**
($Billions)
Market Share*
Bank of America Corp
31
5,789
590.6
 7.9%
JP Morgan Chase
26
2,721
462.3
 7.7%
Wells Fargo & Company
23
3,216
309.0
 7.3%
Wachovia
22
3,447
370.0
 7.2%
Washington Mutual
15
2,195
210.7
 6.4%
*Total Demand Deposits = $6,500B used to calculate market share; Here. 
Based on the above two charts, the three largest Retail Banks in 2010 accounted for 30.2% of the industry market share up from their total of 22.9% at the end of 2006.  However, the failure of two of the top five retail banks, Wachovia and Washington Mutual, prompted the Federal Government to step in arranging acquisitions by Wells Fargo and JP Morgan Chase, respectively.  While these acquisitions were initiated by the Bush Administration, they were never reversed nor effectively addressed by either the Obama Administration or the Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform Bill. 
 
All of the largest firms in the financial industry have flourished under the Obama Administration given their preferential treatment, achieving massive growth relative to the smaller financial firms.

Goldman Sachs recently suggested that the Republican austerity plan to “slash” the budget by $61 Billion would lower economic growth by 2% over the next 6 months , a forecast that most economists have dismissed.  Yet the statement was clearly self serving.  Goldman, Morgan Stanley and the other Wall Street financial firms have not only received massive support through TARP and the Federal Reserve, but have also benefited dramatically by a favorable yield curve with the Federal Reserve having held the short term cost of funds well below the Banks’ return on investment in even the most conservative of investment vehicles, Treasury Bonds.  Third, these firms have all been the direct beneficiaries of the massive explosion of Federal debt (as well as State/Municipal debt).  Between 2008 and 2010 the total Treasury debt issued has been $4.5 Trillion.  Here. These large financial firms all have Investment Banking operations that deal in both the primary and secondary Treasury debt markets, buying and selling debt instruments on behalf of their clients as well as their own portfolios.  The increase in this activity over the past two years has inflated both their revenue and profit figures.  And finally, government subsidies have dramatically increased the market share of the top five largest financial institutions, despite assurances that the Dodd Frank Bill would end the threat of “Too Big To Fail”.

These are the same financial institutions that overwhelmingly supported Barack Obama during the 2008 election campaign.  In “Bought and Paid For”, Charles Gasparino outlines the campaign contributions from these firms and their executives to the respective parties. Gasparino, “Bought And Paid For”, Sentinel Publishing, p ix – xi) 

Contributions
Republicans
Democrats
Bank of America
$1.9 MM
$2.1 MM
Citi
$2.2 MM
$3.4 MM
Morgan Stanley
$2.0 MM
$2.5 MM
Goldman Sachs
$1.8 MM
$5.0 MM
JP Morgan Chase*
$2.2 MM
$2.2 MM
Total
$10.1 MM
$15.2 MM
*Jamie Dimond personally gave $4,250 to R’s; $37,850 to D’s

Goldman Sachs alone contributed nearly $1MM to the Obama Presidential campaign.  In 2009 as Gaspirino points out Goldman Sachs, the beneficiary of Obama Administration policies, earned profits of $13.4 Billion or $13,400 per dollar invested in Obama’s campaign (Gasparino, “Bought and Paid For”, p232).   This is likely a far greater return than Goldman or any of the other firms listed above could have made on competitive market investments! 

President Obama has announced plans to raise and spend $1 Billion for his 2012 Presidential Campaign.  Given his generosity to Wall Street does anyone doubt they will help assure he raises it?
 
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ILLEGAL ALIEN In State Tuition Bill PASSES Oregon State Senate. Call House Members NOW!! Reps 503 986 1400, Dems 503 986 1900

Text Size:  A-   A   A+  
House of Representatives Leadership:
Co-Speaker of the House Bruce Hanna(R-Roseburg)
Co-Speaker of the House Arnie Roblan(D-Coos Bay)
Not sure who your Representative is? Click here to find out.
Tell ’em where you saw it. Http://www.victoriataft.com

Pete the Banker on Political Quid Pro Quo: Will Obama’s Wall Street Welfare Recipients Sign Their Gubmint Checks Back Over to Him in 2012?

Republicans are currently providing some badly needed oversight on the Money Center Banks and Wall Street Investment Bankers. The Obama Administration has provided little transparency on the extent of government aid to the industry or its relationship with several of the largest financial institutions. And by the way it looks, if you were ‘in’ with the Obama Administration, money poured your way:

[T]he concentration of the vast majority of PDFC funds was [to] … just six banks…98 percent of the funds lent by the PDFC program. (see more below)

Wall Street and the money center banks were the biggest recipients of Federal Government aid during 2007 and 2008.  

“The banking industry continues to recover from the 2007-2009 financial crisis but lending will need to pick up if progress is to continue, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp Chairman Sheila Bair said on Wednesday. Industry profits were up considerably from a year ago standing at $21.7 billion in the fourth quarter of 2010, which compares to a net loss of $1.8 billion a year ago, according to the quarterly banking report released by the agency.” Here.  

And as a result of the massive federal support and the spread between banks cost of funds and their return on invested funds,  

Source of graph here.

“…the largest 25 banks in the country are having a feast on the low borrowing costs that the Fed is maintaining (the FDIC reported that 95% of all bank profits in the fourth quarter of 2010 went to the largest banks in the United States ).” Here.

The top three Wall Street recipients of US Treasury and Federal Reserve funds and support during the crisis included Citigroup, Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley.  “Six of the largest financial firms all listed in the charts below accounted for $140 Billion in TARP money alone without accounting for massive support by the Federal Reserve and the FDIC.  “The surge has come after the five banks took a combined $135 billion from the Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program and borrowed billions more from the Federal Reserve’s emergency-lending facilities in late 2008 and early 2009 following the collapse of Lehman Bros. Holdings Inc. Since then, the firms have benefited from low interest rates and the Fed’s purchases of fixed-income Here.

These large firms were also the beneficiary of massive Federal Reserve support, “After you crunch the Primary Dealer Credit Facility (PDCF) numbers, you can see through the noise. What is revealed is this: The Fed’s overnight lending to primary dealers concentrated staggering sums of government cash in the hands of a tiny circle of financial institutions. The story of PDCF lending is the story of those few financial institutions that went on to become just six banks.
 
But the concentration of the vast majority of PDFC funds was far narrower than that. Institutions that ultimately went on to become just six banks—Bank of America, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Barclays, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan—received at total of about $8.78 trillion through the PDFC program. That $8.78 trillion figure represents over 98 percent of the funds lent by the PDFC program. Here.
 
Wall Street’s biggest investment banks, rebounding after a government bailout, have completed two of their most profitable years ever, buoyed by 2010 results likely to be the second-highest ever.  The major Investment Banking institutions listed in the charts below have increased their market share in the industry since 2007 based on investment banking fees (chart 1 and 2 below).  Likewise, the major Money Center Banks have increased their share of the market based on Demand Deposits (checking account deposits held shown in charts 3 and 4 below).  
 
Chart 1
Bloomberg 2010 Global League Table Rankings: Top 5
Equity and Equity-Linked Sales, Excluding Self-Led Offerings
Underwriter
Ranking
Market Share
Fees
Morgan Stanley
1
10.4%
$7.27B
JP Morgan Chase
2
8.5%
$5.97B
Goldman Sachs
3
8.2%
$5.71B
Bank Of America *
4
6.4%
$4.48B
Citigroup
5
5.4%
$3.77B
*Merrill Lynch taken over by Bank of America
In 2010, two years after the near collapse of the largest firms on Wall Street, the top five Investment Banking firms accounted for 38.9% of the industries’ market share.  Here.
Chart 2
Bloomberg 2007 Global League Table Rankings: Top 5
Equity and Equity-Linked Sales, Excluding Self-Led Offerings
Underwriter
Ranking
Market Share
Fees
Citigroup
1
7.9%
$6.88B
Goldman Sachs
2
7.7%
$6.66B
Morgan Stanley
3
7.3%
$6.36B
JP Morgan Chase
4
7.2%
$6.23B
Merrill Lynch
5
6.4%
$5.55B
 
In 2007 the top five firms accounted for only 36.5% of the industry, collecting $86.9 Billion in fees from merger and acquisition and underwriting of stocks/bonds.  Here.   They increased their market share dramatically while receiving both Treasury TARP funds and massive Federal Reserve support.

Below are charts for the largest Retail Banks in 2006 and 2010 as measured by Domestic Demand Deposits.  In the 2010 list only three of the top five retail banks survived the 2007 financial crisis.

Chart 3 – 2010 Retail Demand Deposits (FDIC Table Four)
Company  
Number of States with
Deposit Offices
Reported Number of
Deposit Offices
Domestic Demand Deposits
(Billions)
Share of Total
Domestic Deposits
%
Bank of America
Corporation
36
6,041
916.1
11.9%
Wells Fargo Company
40
6,586
750.4
9.8%%
JP Morgan Chase & Co
24
5,227
652.7
8.5%
Citigroup
15
1,023
307.3
4.0%
US Bank Corp
26
3,056
169.2
2.2%

Here.

Chart 4 2006 Retail Demand Deposits (FDIC Table 4)
Name of Company
Number of States with
Deposit Offices
Reported Number of
Deposit Offices
Domestic Deposits**
($Billions)
Market Share*
Bank of America Corp
31
5,789
590.6
 7.9%
JP Morgan Chase
26
2,721
462.3
 7.7%
Wells Fargo & Company
23
3,216
309.0
 7.3%
Wachovia
22
3,447
370.0
 7.2%
Washington Mutual
15
2,195
210.7
 6.4%
*Total Demand Deposits = $6,500B used to calculate market share; Here. 
Based on the above two charts, the three largest Retail Banks in 2010 accounted for 30.2% of the industry market share up from their total of 22.9% at the end of 2006.  However, the failure of two of the top five retail banks, Wachovia and Washington Mutual, prompted the Federal Government to step in arranging acquisitions by Wells Fargo and JP Morgan Chase, respectively.  While these acquisitions were initiated by the Bush Administration, they were never reversed nor effectively addressed by either the Obama Administration or the Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform Bill. 
 
All of the largest firms in the financial industry have flourished under the Obama Administration given their preferential treatment, achieving massive growth relative to the smaller financial firms.

Goldman Sachs recently suggested that the Republican austerity plan to “slash” the budget by $61 Billion would lower economic growth by 2% over the next 6 months , a forecast that most economists have dismissed.  Yet the statement was clearly self serving.  Goldman, Morgan Stanley and the other Wall Street financial firms have not only received massive support through TARP and the Federal Reserve, but have also benefited dramatically by a favorable yield curve with the Federal Reserve having held the short term cost of funds well below the Banks’ return on investment in even the most conservative of investment vehicles, Treasury Bonds.  Third, these firms have all been the direct beneficiaries of the massive explosion of Federal debt (as well as State/Municipal debt).  Between 2008 and 2010 the total Treasury debt issued has been $4.5 Trillion.  Here. These large financial firms all have Investment Banking operations that deal in both the primary and secondary Treasury debt markets, buying and selling debt instruments on behalf of their clients as well as their own portfolios.  The increase in this activity over the past two years has inflated both their revenue and profit figures.  And finally, government subsidies have dramatically increased the market share of the top five largest financial institutions, despite assurances that the Dodd Frank Bill would end the threat of “Too Big To Fail”.

These are the same financial institutions that overwhelmingly supported Barack Obama during the 2008 election campaign.  In “Bought and Paid For”, Charles Gasparino outlines the campaign contributions from these firms and their executives to the respective parties. Gasparino, “Bought And Paid For”, Sentinel Publishing, p ix – xi) 

Contributions
Republicans
Democrats
Bank of America
$1.9 MM
$2.1 MM
Citi
$2.2 MM
$3.4 MM
Morgan Stanley
$2.0 MM
$2.5 MM
Goldman Sachs
$1.8 MM
$5.0 MM
JP Morgan Chase*
$2.2 MM
$2.2 MM
Total
$10.1 MM
$15.2 MM
*Jamie Dimond personally gave $4,250 to R’s; $37,850 to D’s

Goldman Sachs alone contributed nearly $1MM to the Obama Presidential campaign.  In 2009 as Gaspirino points out Goldman Sachs, the beneficiary of Obama Administration policies, earned profits of $13.4 Billion or $13,400 per dollar invested in Obama’s campaign (Gasparino, “Bought and Paid For”, p232).   This is likely a far greater return than Goldman or any of the other firms listed above could have made on competitive market investments! 

President Obama has announced plans to raise and spend $1 Billion for his 2012 Presidential Campaign.  Given his generosity to Wall Street does anyone doubt they will help assure he raises it?
 
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Rees Lloyd on Stolen Valor Act: Judge With Shady Past Determines Whose Lies Are Protected

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the most liberal and most reversed circuit in the country, has further fueled the fire and ire of Americans claiming a modern “judicial tyranny,” by the 9th Circuit’s recent refusal to grant a rehearing of its prior decision declaring the Stolen Valor Act an unconstitutional violation of “freedom of speech” under the First Amendment, thus effectively creating a “right to lie” about military service and receipt of the Medal of Honor and other medals of valor. (US v. Alvarez, No. 08-50345, Order Denying Petition For Panel Rehearing and Rehearing En Banc. March 21, 2011, accessible on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals website.).
The dissenting judges urged rehearing the Stolen Valor Act decision was wrongfully decided, and the resulting “right to lie” doctrine of the 9th Circuit imperils other laws criminalizing false speech. The dissenters point out, among other things, that the decision to declare the Stolen Valor Act unconstitutional “on its face” because it does not require a showing of “harm” to someone else, itself flies in the face of many statutes penalizing pure speech which do not require proof that someone was harmed thereby. Included among the many examples cited, are false statements by illegal aliens regarding their right to be in the country which lies are presently punishable as crimes under federal statutes. (18 U.S. Code §1015(a), as Judge Bybee pointed out in his original dissent. Think of the 19 Saudi Islamist terrorists who lied their way into America and attacked us on 9-11-2001; or the 12-20 million illegal alien Mexicans and others in America right now living lies to remain. Will there lies which do not harm any particular individual now be a matter of “freedom of speech” and thus uttered with impunity?

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