Monday, May 2, 2011


Remember The Bailouts?

First, let me set the scene.  The housing market had collapsed with properties in many areas losing more than half their value.  Banks had been pushing adjustable rate mortgages (ARM’s) and even ‘interest only’ loans with high commissions that artificially inflated the housing market instead of more traditional ‘fixed rate’ loans. Politicians in Washington were demanding that loans be given to people who couldn’t reliably pay them back.  Then to insulate themselves from the bad loans they had written, companies like Goldman Sachs bundled those bad loans into a new financial instrument called a mortgage backed security.  Those securities allowed Wall Street to sell those bad loans back to regular people as AAA rated investments through State pensions funds and other investment tools.  

I could go on and on about how this fraud was committed at the behest of Wall Street and their politicians, so the American people got burned by buying overvalued homes, got burned again by being pushed into bad loans, and finally got burned by assuming the risk of those bad loans through our pensions and other retirement accounts.  The American people had taken a beating, but Wall Street and the politicians they owned were not done raiding our wealth.  
Loopholes that these bankers had bought from Washington allowed these banks to become “too big to fail” and when the market came crashing down around us, they threatened more financial misery unless they could raid TRILLIONS of dollars from our tax dollars.  Goldman Sachs alum, Henry Paulson, was heading up the treasury and in conjunction with other bank-owned politicians, like Tim “Tax-Cheat” Geithner, Barney Frank, and Christopher Dodd, they successfully pushed through a gigantic bailout.  Now, years later, Goldman Sachs and Wall Street are back to making billions of dollars in profit while the American people are still dealing with a collapsed housing market, soaring gas prices, and diminished pensions. 
I ask you to remember all of this because, once again, Wall Street manipulation ignored by Washington threatens regular American people and even national security.  Gas prices are soaring at rates far beyond what can be attributed to the forces of regular supply and demand.  Gas prices are soaring because crooked politicians and crooked Wall Street wiz kids needed another way to rob the American people—this time by using our pension funds and foreign money to artificially inflate gas prices. 
One of the reasons that Donald Trump is resonating with a lot of people is that he openly talks about ending Wall Street’s ability to artificially inflate gas prices through speculation.  When you see gas prices soaring above $4 a gallon, ask yourself where are the lines caused by a supply shortage?  With the world’s economy in a recession, where is the gigantic increase in demand that would warrant a 100%+ increase in cost?  The obvious answer is these gas prices are not being caused by a major tilt in supply or demand.  The people driving up gas prices can be found among the same crooks who we bailed out after they stole incredible amounts of American wealth and their politicians in Washington just a few short years ago. 
This speculation on oil commodities is literally driving trillions of dollars to enemies of the United States.  When the price of oil rises, countries like Iran, Venezuela, and Libya are the major benefactors.  I plan on asking a lot of politicians what can be done to rein in oil speculation, and I hope you will too.  I look forward to sharing some solutions with you in a future column.
Dustin Stockton
Media/Events Director,
Chief Strategist, Western Representation PAC

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