Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Even Fox News Abandons Conservatives Over Wall Street Bailout

Even Fox News is selling out conservatives that don't believe that the US government should be bailing out Wall Street. One of my favorite Fox News anchors, Sheppard Smith, said in reply to an email that he read on his show this afternoon that he believes that since everyone in the government and on Wall Street agree that this government bailout must be passed – then anyone that thinks anything to the contrary, like the lady that wrote him – must be wrong.

Hey Sheppard, do you remember the debate about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq during to the lead up to the War in Iraq? President Bush, most Members of Congress, foreign nations and all members of the intelligence community all said that Saddam Husein had WMD's. After the US invasion, Sheppard, where did all those WMD's go? I don't take President Bush, the congressional leadership and/or both presidential candidates at their word when most of them would say anything just to win reelection or get a law passed that would benefit them personally and neither should you.

While it is understandable that the mainstream media would rush to support any type of law that would further socialize the United States of American – I expected more from Fox News than to hunker down and follow the crowd. The CEO of the company that owns Fox News, Rupert Murdock, made it clear a week ago that he was in favor of this bailout for Wall Street and also said that he believes the US government would eventually recover most of this money when the housing market turns around. While I still enjoy watching Sheppard Smith on Fox News, I thought his condescending comments toward that lady that wrote in today with an intelligent observation about what was really happening in the stock market was beneath Sheppard's usually high standards.

Major News Media Fooled Again By President Bush

I've got to say this for President Bush, he doesn't give up when he loses a fight. While there are most likely many motivations to President Bush's continuing push to pass a Wall Street bailout package in the Congress – the idea that worldwide markets might correct themselves without his almost trillion dollar bailout package probably has to be his biggest concern. Unlike President Bush, most real fiscal conservatives understand that financial markets go up and down in the normal cycle of life. From the point of view of President Bush, if world financial markets recover without his expensive bailout package – he will look even more silly and foolish than he already does on this important issue.

Most people would have thought that the mainstream news media would have learned their lesson after President Bush pulled the wool over their eyes about WMD's in Iraq before the war. However, most members of the mainstream news media are, once again, following President Bush like blind children and soon they will discover the error of their ways and get mad at him again. When that day comes, we need to remember how most members of the mainstream media refused to listen to the will of the people, but instead followed President Bush once again only to be fooled, once again.

We all need to keep in mind that the major broadcast and cable news networks are publicly traded Wall Street companies which would benefit in one way or another from the President Bush bailout law. While I doubt if company leaders are showing up in the news rooms of CNN, MSNBC and Fox News to tell them to support this Wall Street bailout package – there is no doubt in the minds of reporters and anchors of these companies what effect a lower stock market will have on their personal income and retirement packages.

The American People Won When Wall Street Bailout Law Failed

Last weekend, when it seemed certain that Congress was going to follow the lead of President Bush and bailout the 'fat cats' on Wall Street with our tax dollars - I wrote that socialism had arrived in the United States. However, my prediction of a socialistic United States might have been premature because it turned out that there were 228 Members of the US House of Representatives that were not only patriots of this great nation and the principles of what make it strong, but they were also brave enough to stand up to President Bush, other leaders in their party and a pro Wall Street bailout mainstream news media and do the right thing by voting no to the Wall Street bailout package.

The past two days I have learned volumes from members of the mainstream media about how their view their jobs and how they report the important news of the day. Apparently, the people that run CNN do not listen to their viewers at all – because it is crystal clear that most Americans not only opposed this Wall Street bailout package, but they were also extremely vocal in that opposition. So how did CNN report the defeat of this Wall Street bailout package yesterday? Well, from my point of view they were completely on the side of their own Wall Street reporters and President Bush because all day the only thing that CNN talked about yesterday, were the negative consequences of this laws defeat.

I am so proud of most Americans that have stood up for what is right and told their representatives in Congress that they understand there will be short term pain if this bailout package is not approved, but they are will to suffer along with everyone else to make sure that this country, once again, is placed on a strong financial foundation. While some politicians and most members of the mainstream media are scared to death about the short term safety of their money – most Americans have their focus on what is right versus what is wrong and they have made their stand for right. This is such a simple principle and that is why the mainstream media and President Bush are so out of touch with the American people.

Congressman Chet Edwards Voted Wrong On Bailout Bill

If you have read my blog for any length of time at all you know that Chet Edwards is not only my Congressman, but he also is one of the few people that I respect in the US House of Representatives. That said, yesterday Congressman Edwards made a mistake when he voted for the Wall Street bailout package when that bill went down to defeat in the US House of Representatives. Back here in Central Texas there is no doubt in my mind that most people did not support this bailout package of Wall Street. However, I'm sure that Congressman Chet Edwards was feeling the heat from Nancy Pelosi and other members of the democratic leadership in the 'House', to support this legislation and stand behind the democratic party leadership with this legislation.

While this one vote will not cause me to turn against Congressman Chet Edwards, I do believe he needs to rethink who he is really representing in the US Congress. Is it Nancy Pelosi and the liberal Washington democratic caucus, or conservatives back home like myself - that have crossed party lines to vote for him in the past? Don't get me wrong, today's vote by Congressman Chet Edwards had to be a tough one for him, but in reality his job in the US House of Representatives is to make hard choices between what his liberal party leadership want and what the people back home in Central Texas, who are largely conservative, expect.

While there is no way to know for sure, I would bet that Congressman Chet Edwards email, telephone calls and old fashion snail mail were running in the opposite direction of his vote yesterday in the US House of Representatives on this Wall Street bailout bill. In contrast, Congressman Edwards next door neighbor in the US House – Representative John Carter went against his parties leadership and President Bush to stand up for what was desired from the people back home in his district. While right now I still intend to vote for Congressman Chet Edwards in November, if this bill is once again brought up in the US House of Representatives before election day and Congressman Edwards continues to side with Speaker Pelosi instead of the people back home in Central Texas, I might have to reconsider my vote this November.

The New Wall Street, Do It Right Or Get Fired With Nothing

The time has come to tell high flying CEO's that as American citizens we have had enough of them making money when they run their companies right while at the same time being guaranteed that they will make as much or more money if they do it wrong. No one else in the world today is paid for failure expect Wall Street CEO's. Back when they first started demanding severance packages that would compensate them even when they screwed up, that should have been a red flag 'wake up call' to all boards of directors in publicly traded companies that some wrong was in the air. However, the public was not protected by large and small company boards of directors and it is time for Congress to rewrite the rules of Wall Street to even out the playing field with tough new regulations.

As a lifelong conservative, not long ago, I was against new government rules and regulations to make businesses conform to the law. Actually, until just a few weeks ago – I still thought that massive deregulation was the way to go because I wrongly thought that less government interference in the affairs of business was a good thing. The current problems on Wall Street and the massive amount of greed that has been driving daily decisions there has changed my view of deregulation forever.

What is needed right now is massive new government regulation of Wall Street to make sure that these smart financial people do not use their intelligence advantage against the rest of us in the future. There are pros and cons to living in a free country and one of the pros is to make sure that criminals don't take over our daily financial lives because the government is looking the other way. In the same way no one would desire to live in a neighborhood that restricted a police presence, no one should be forced to invest their money in a stock market that is not regulated and policed by the federal government, to make sure that criminals and get rich quick artist don't take over and steal everyone's money.

More Proud Of My Country (USA) Today Than Ever Before

While most of the elected wimps in Washington and the pig headed mainstream media that follow them were shocked today when Republican conservatives in the US House of Representatives said no, not only to President Bush – but also Wall Street 'fat cats' that have funded their reelection campaigns for years, I as one single American was proud not only of my country today, but also some of the people that were elected to office to make sure it is kept safe and secure.

Unlike previous votes when GOP members of the US House of Representatives just rubber stamped anything that came their way from President Bush, today they finally stood up to him and while this move is a little late – they picked the perfect time to make a stand against taking this great nation even further down the road toward socialism. Wall Street and most financial markets around the world have been out-of-control for a long time. The time had come for the greed and unfairness of financial markets to come to an end and I really believe that most Americans know they will suffer financially in the short run, but over the long haul they will be better off without these bad actors taking advantage of them with their high tech financial market games.

The brave Members of the US House of Representatives that voted against this Wall Street bailout law today, against the wishes of their caucus leaders, their President and most members of the liberal news media are heroes in my opinion. Most Americans have known for most of their lives that the right choice is usually never the easy selection and while going against the crowd is a very tough thing to do – in the end, most people that are just searching for short term security are usually not that smart when it comes to issues like bailing out Wall Street. Remember that old country song? 'If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything'.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Republican Leaders In the US House Of Representatives Must Go

Today, when most conservative Republicans in the US House of Representatives voted no to a 700 billion dollar, President Bush back, bailout of Wall Street bill – leaders of the Republican caucus in the 'US House', blamed Nancy Pelosi for the loss. What a weak and irresponsible position to take when it was other patriotic Republican conservatives that refused to be lead down the road of American socialism by President Bush by supporting this legislation. Rather than Republican leaders praising the courage of their colleagues for standing up against President Bush to do the right thing, instead House Republican Leaders decided to ignore the will of their own caucus with their news conference comments and try to blame Nancy Pelosi for this defeat.

If I was one of those brave GOP Congressman that stood up to my President and voted for what was right, I would be 'mad as hell' at my Republican leaders for not recognizing that it was me and a majority of other GOP House Members that were on the side of right with this vote and not the GOP caucus leaders that went against he will of their own rank and file by pushing this socialistic legislation supported by President Bush.

After this November's election, there will be many changes in the US House of Representative and at that time the brave members of the GOP caucus that did the right thing today and were shunned by their own leadership should remove their current leaders and elect new ones. That disgraceful news conference I saw today on television where the US House GOP leadership blamed everything on Pelosi instead of standing up and celebrating the bravery of a majority of their own caucus was disgraceful. None of these current GOP leaders should be reelected to their leadership positions when the new Congress is convened next year.

Recession Isn't Coming, It's Already Been Here For Awhile

Tuesday, September 30th 2008, is going to be one of the worst days for worldwide financial markets in the history of the planet. However, now that Congress has failed to bailout Wall Street – these overly inflated stock markets that have been propped up by governments around the world because of political fears are finally going to be allowed to correct and I would not be surprised to see the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DOW) drop by as much as 5000 points by the end of this week.

While I feel the pain especially of retires that depend on steady stock gains to help finance their retirement, this correction in worldwide markets is years overdue and it was going to happen either now or sometime next year even if the taxpayers put up almost one trillion dollars to try and stop it. Since World War II the United States has grown it's economy completely based on easy credit. However, there always comes a day of reckoning when credit is used for such an important purpose and that day is today.

Already financial and stock markets in Asia are experiencing massive sell offs and that selling will continue in Europe in a few hours and it will drag US stock even lower on Tuesday. In a way, House Republicans did the world a favor today by rejecting this silly short term bailout plan that would only delay the financial correction that started earlier today. By letting financial markets crash completely this week, the pain will be severe for a few days, but it will be shorter in duration than if artificial barriers were erected to slow it down until after this years election. Just remember that unlike other financial crisis' in the past, this time we are all in this boat together – rich, poor and the middle class are all going to feel the pain of this market correction and learn important lessons from it.

A massive worldwide stock market crash is the only way to remove bad businesses from Wall Street so better run firms can take their place and put our nations financial foundation back on a firm footing, instead of having one that has been artificially created by some really smart people in financial markets around the world to service their own selfish greed.

Unbelievable Bias Coverage On CNN After Bailout Defeat

If anyone really takes what the anchors on CNN have to say at face value, they were certainly mislead today as all voices that I heard on that cable channel were preaching in lock step with members of the Bush administration and their own reporters that cover Wall Street in preaching the certainty of a modern day 'Armageddon' because the US House of Representatives refused to use taxpayer money to bailout Wall Street.

For the first time in years, it was the politicians in Congress that were in step with what the American people wanted and that is why this bailout bill went down to defeat. I was astonished at how this morning when it seemed certain that this bill would pass, CNN was telling their viewers that today's bailout package would have no benefit for a period of several months. However, when the Wall Street bailout was defeated, CNN went out of their way to blame today's 700 point plus drop in the DOW on the Congress for not passing this law.

While the American people are shouting at the top of their voices to their elected leaders that they do not want this bailout package, some members of media and especially anchors at CNN have taken an elitist approach to this issue by acting like they know what is in the best interest of this country more than regular folks like you and I. I finally had to turn off CNN late this afternoon when one of their 20 something female reporters was talking about how she and her friends were now worried that their ATM cards might not work anymore. Cut me some slack.

Congress Did The Right Thing Today, Tough Love Was Needed

The US House of Representatives did the right thing today when they stood up to President Bush and the power brokers on Wall Street that expected them to bail them out of their current financial problems. For years, the American people have watched greedy companies on Wall Street enrich themselves while at the same time their stockholders were not fairly treated either during good or bad times.

When the world is in a financial crisis there are two choices available to the government, 1st) they can come to the rescue and bail out the companies involved or 2nd) they can let those companies fail which will cause short term disruption to the markets, but within a short period of time other companies will rush to fill the void and do a better job than the one that went out of business.

What the US government and Wall Street leaders have been trying to do with this current Wall Street bailout package is to prop up badly managed companies and keep them in business instead of letting the marketplace take them under. There is no long term good that will happen for anyone when this type of short sighted approach is welcomed in the halls of Congress or at the Office of the President. Whether or not the US taxpayers bailout Wall Street companies or not – there is going to be a bunch of financial pain in our future. The question we should all be asking ourselves is do we want to continue to prop up bad companies and throw good money after bad just to give the economy a short term boost that will last for only a limited period of time.

Did High Tech Kiting Helped Bring Down Wall Street?

As a young man, I listened to someone that was older explain how a person could, with very little money of their own, use the money of others to live a grand lifestyle. At the time, I was the son of a cotton farmer that did not believe in the concept of using wrong and/or illegal activities like check and credit card kiting to enrich myself without the benefit of getting a job and working hard for the money that I earned. While few people are talking about the effect that high tech credit kiting had on the collapse of Wall Street, in my opinion it had to play a role because of how quickly everything went from great to terrible.

For those of you that don't understand the term of kiting here is a little example of how that practice is used by get rich quick artist. In the end, all kiting schemes lead to failure because the amount of time that it takes to perpetrate this crime has been reduced because of the use of computers by credit card companies and banks to discover this crime. Kiting first started when it was discovered by some 'smart by half' people that they could use various bank accounts to give themselves credit (money) that they really did not have. For example, an old time check kiter might have deposited a check from a bank account held by them into another bank account they owned at another financial institution. In the past, that check would take several days to clear the bank. In the mean time, this same check kiter would deposit a check from the second bank back into the first one in order to cover the previous check and keep the difference.

In more modern times, some people have actually tried to pay their Visa bill by getting a cash advance on their Master Card. Just like with check kiting, credit card kiting will soon come to an end and eventually the person trying to pull this scheme makes a mistake in judgment and gets caught and brought to justice.

While it might take some time to prove, I believe there was even a more high tech type of financial kiting happening on Wall Street before this latest crisis and that criminal activity is what really lead all of these once fluid companies to the door of bankruptcy. Stay tuned because I believe there is much more to this Wall Street crisis than a bunch of bad mortgage loans.

Conservatives Need New Leaders, Current Bozos Have To Go

Two years ago when conservatives were turned out of the Congress should have been a wake up call for them to not only clean up their act, but to also revise some of their positions away from social conservative issues and once again focus on the main reason why conservatism came to national prominence during the years of Ronald Reagan. However, the sad truth is that social conservatives went from being a part of the Republican Party to demanding that all of their concerns be addresses immediately and without decent or they would pout and not vote for GOP candidates in the future.

From my point of view, the late President Ronald Reagan, while a believer in social conservative principles, spent most of his public life promoting smaller government, less taxation and basically keeping the government off the backs of the American people. Then came President Bush who has turned out to be a liberal on fiscal conservative issues and a hawk when it comes to social conservative positions like abortion and whether a person has the right to die if they are terminally ill.

I believe that most GOP Members of Congress and President Bush have sold their souls out to social conservatives in the Republican Party while at the same time throwing fiscal conservatives that believe in smaller government and less government intrusion in the lives of Americans under the bus. This new GOP policy of spending like Democrats while keeping the Republican base in check by opposing abortion has torn the Republican Party to shreds. The only way the GOP will rise to prominence once again in the future is for the current GOP leadership structure to be defeated and turned out of office so real fiscal conservatives can once again regain control of the party and hopefully in the future the country, as well.

Redskins Defeat Cowboys In Close NFC East Game

While I love to watch the Dallas Cowboys play football, today they lost to the Washington Redskins and I believe today's loss could help the Cowboys reach the Superbowl. Die-hard Cowboys fans remember all to well what happened last year as the 'boys' got off to a perfect season, looked fantastic and once they secured a place in the playoffs – their game play went to hell in a hand basket. Unlike, the New England Patriots, the Dallas Cowboys never seem to play well in the playoffs until the hit a few bumps (lost games) along the way during the season.

Today's Cowboys' game against the Redskins was close and both teams played really well. However, in the end there was not enough time left on the scoreboard clock for the Cowboys' to come back. One thing I did learn for the first time today was how much I like this 'West Coast Offense' that the Redskins used to defeat the Cowboys. I like watching new types of offenses being tried in the NFL and from what I saw in today's game, this 'West Coast Offense' might be a real winner for other teams, as well.

No player or fan wants to see their favorite team lose a game and I was heart sick when today's Cowboys/Redskins game went against Dallas. However, in 2008 – I am trying to keep an open mind about how important losses can be when traveling the long road to the Superbowl. Just like with everything in life, without the pain of defeat – victory is never quite as sweet. My hope is that Tony Romo and the rest of the Dallas Cowboys team learned that no game is a gimme and on any given week any NFL team can defeat any other. The thrill of victory is so much better than the pain of defeat. However, if the Dallas Cowboys have to lose I would prefer that it be at the beginning of the season - instead of at the end, like what turned out to be the case last year.

CEO's Face Angry Taxpayers Over Golden Parachutes

From the 1980's until today, Wall Street company CEO's have insulated themselves from failure by demanding pay packages from the companies that they run which compensate them if they succeed or fail. This un American and unfair activity has been a thorn in the side of millions of Americans for years and my hope is that now that taxpayers are being put on the hook for almost one trillion dollars to bailout Wall Street – some kind of limits will be placed on the amount of money CEO's can earn when they don't make, legal, money for their shareholders.

No one else in the United States is rewarded for failure except big company CEO's. Everyone knows it is wrong, but the practice of demanding huge million dollar golden parachute deals by CEO's has continue over the past three decades and it is far past time for the government to somehow regulate these golden parachute deals, against the board of directors wishes, if their CEO does not make legitimate and legal money for that companies shareholders.

Right now, the mood of the American people is so sour against huge golden parachute deals for failed CEO's that it turns out to be the perfect time for the Congress to step up, do the right thing and outlaw many of these outrageous practices forever. Over this past week it has become crystal clear to most Americans that Wall Street cannot police itself, so it is the governments responsibility to step in and do it for them. I don't care if a company pays their CEO a one billion dollar bonus if that CEO did their job right. My issues with CEO 'golden parachute' deals revolve around allowing them to walk away with a boatload of money when everyone else in their company is either losing their job or former investors that are stuck with worthless stock certificates.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

What If Markets Collapse Even After The Wall Street Bailout?

There does not seem to be anyone that is talking about the possibility that world financial markets and Wall Street could still collapse even after the almost one trillion dollar bailout package from Congress and President Bush becomes law. For the most part, members of the news media and the political talking heads that make up many of their programs have only talked about the tragedy that awaited Americans if the Congress did not act. Now with this new bailout package almost ready to be signed into law, what if this action does not settle world markets and they continue to sell off this week?

In my gut, I think there is a good possibility that this weekends bailout from Washington could be the equivalent of placing a small band-aid on a huge knife wound. The little talked about fact that has driven huge financial companies and banks out of business has been a lack of liquidity. Those liquidity issues have been caused by millions of people withdrawing all of their money from banks and other financially institutions within a short period of time. Let just say that this weeks bailout plan of Wall Street by the Congress does not inspire confidence among investors and the general public and those same people that have been withdrawing money for weeks, continue to withdraw money for banks at record levels in the weeks to come. What happens then?

We all hope that Congress did the right thing this weekend when they authorized the spending of our tax money to buy bad loans from companies that should not have made them in the first place. However, if American investors and other people of means around the world still believe that the worst yet to come – they could continue to withdraw all of their money from banks and either invest it in Gold or find an old coffee can and bury it in the backyard until things settle down.

Barack Obama Is Needed To Manage Americas Return To Socialism

Now that the socialistic legislation proposed by our former conservative friend President Bush is all but a done deal, it might be time for conservatives to realize that the only way conservatism will return in the future is to let liberalism and socialism run it's course in the United States for awhile? As a conservative that sees this great country moving from conservative values toward a more liberal and socialistic approach, Barack Obama might be the logical choice to lead the United States at least in the short term.

Frankly, I am so disgusted with the Republican Party that I have decided to vote for Obama in protest to my former party that sold conservative principles down the river once they tasted power in Washington. There are two good reasons why fiscal conservatives should vote for Obama in 2008. 1st) The United States is already moving quickly toward socialism and if that is really the direction that Americans want to proceed in, we need a leader that understand that system of government and not a liberal that calls himself a conservative only when election time comes around. 2nd) Just because the American people currently believe liberal socialism is a good idea does not mean that they will maintain that view over the long haul. Liberalism ran amok in the 1960's only to be replace by conservatism in the 1980's by Ronald Reagan.

I have deep reservations about John McCain's honesty when he proclaims himself as a true conservative. I am beginning to wonder if he too is not a liberal hiding in conservative clothing just like President Bush? If you are short sighted in your political point of view, it will be impossible for you to understand why I believe it might be in the best interest of conservatives to vote for Barack Obama in November. However, if you are a student of history and realize that everything that is happening today has happened before and will once again go full circle in the future – it might be easier for you to see the wisdom of my words and my reasons for voting for Barack Obama.

Is It Possible For McCain To Still Win In November?

Tonight, I spent some time reading the results of dozens of polls that have been taken over the past week. After much study I am beginning to wonder if it is even possible for Senator John McCain to win in November? All the polls that I read, whether they were independent - leaning right or left - all showed that Obama was pulling ahead of McCain by a double digit margin and most of these polls were conducted before last Friday's debate when most Americans scored Obama as the winner.

To put it as simply as I can, last week could not have been worse for Senator McCain. While some far right conservative pundits are trying to blame the problems of Wall Street on minorities, the poor and even Bill Clinton - by an overwhelming margin most American blame President Bush and his administration for dropping the ball and letting Wall Street run wild under his watch.

While Senator McCain goes out of his way to try and say he is not like President Bush, on almost every major issues it is difficult to tell these two men apart. With the exception of far right ideologically driving social conservatives, President Bush has no Republican base left to draw upon and if McCain is expecting this one single group of voters to carry the day for him in November, he is going to be in for a huge shock as he loses to Obama in a massive landslide defeat.

Greed Of A Few Ruined Good Times For All, Wall Street

Do you remember the old saying that one bad apple can spoil the whole bunch? Well, that saying is still alive and well in the world today and the proof of it resides in the current financial problems being faced on Wall Street. For years, GOP Members of Congress and President Bush have proclaimed that less regulation would lead to more growth in the US economy. In other words, government regulation was a drag on the growth of both small and large businesses.

While the GOP was right that government regulation does hinderer the growth of business, what they forgot is that there are always a few bad apples out there that will take a lack of oversight by the federal government as an opportunity to run their get rich quick schemes without the government doing anything to stop them. Now that the American people are being forced to bailout Wall Street - there will be a huge amount of additional government regulation invading not only Wall Street, but these new regulations will also be forced upon main street – even though most of them played by the rules even without the government watching their every move.

In a free economy like the United States, business will fall into anarchy without the government watching for bad actors that will take an excess of freedom to enrich themselves while driving good companies into bankruptcy in the process. Remember, that while there are many bad actors in this current Wall Street crisis, there were some companies that did the right thing – but also came under financial stress because of the bad and possibly illegal actions of others. The good news is that federal regulation is coming back 'big time' to major banks and Wall Street companies and that should put some of these 'get rich quick' artists out of business - at least for awhile.

Who Will Pay With Their Freedom After Wall Street Bailout?

There is one common thread that usually follows major disasters in the United States whether they be an act of God or in the case of the financial crisis on Wall Street – an act of greed. Usually, either one person or a group of people will have to pay for an American disaster - not only with their bank accounts – but also with their very freedom. Already, the US Justice Department is going after some of the worst characters on Wall Street in order to show the American people that at least a few people have to pay for their incompetence with their freedom.

The last time I remember that someone had to pay for a financial crime, with their freedom, was during the Enron meltdown many years ago. While Enron was filled with corruption and down right criminal activity that was pretty easy to see, the current meltdown on Wall Street is most likely due to incompetence which also will be punished - in the end - by the US Justice Department.

Right now the American people are very angry that they are being put on the hook for almost one trillion dollars when they did not take part in any of the bad choices that lead Wall Street to the point of collapse. While I am not suggesting that Treasury Secretary Paulson committed any crime, he was completely asleep at the wheel by allow this Wall Street crisis get to the point of a catastrophe before he reach out first to President Bush and Congress for help.

Treasury Secretary Paulson is a retired CEO from Wall Street and he should have known better than most that there was a big problem on Wall Street and rather than do nothing until our very economy was at risk of implosion - he should have been shouting at the top of his lungs, months ago, about what was about to happen in the troubled financial markets.

Wall Street Must Be Cleaned Up With Tighter Regulations

There is a common wisdom going around Washington this weekend that if Congress had not passed a financial bailout bill that Wall Street and other financial markets around the world would be facing 'Armageddon' on Monday morning as massive selling in stocks could have caused another great depression - just like what was experience back in the 1930's here in the United States.

I guess we will never know if those gloom and doom scenarios were correct because late last night the US Congress reach an agreement to spend almost one trillion dollars of our tax money to bail out troubled financial institutions around the country. The good news is that the bill that will soon pass Congress is much better than the original one that was thrown together by members of the Bush administration one week ago. The bad news is that American children that have yet to be born will be paying for this decision their entire life.

The time has come for all Americans, no matter what their political ideology, to stand up with one voice and demand that many of the out-of-control and greedy practices practiced daily on Wall Street be cleaned up so this kind of taxpayer bailout is not needed in the future. It is wrong on almost every moral level for hard working Americans to be forced to bailout millionaires that decided to take short cuts to even more wealth, while at the same time endangering our entire economy with their reckless behavior.

New Polls Reveal That Obama Won The Debate, Friday

While it is common for members of presidential campaigns to brag that their candidate won a debate, today it is becoming clear that most Americans believe that Senator Barack Obama won the debate on Friday night in Mississippi against Senator John McCain. While I was unable to watch the entire presidential debate from Ole Miss, it was clear to me from the last half of the debate that Senator Obama seemed more in control of his thoughts and beliefs than did Senator McCain.

First let me say that I am a person that usually votes for Republican candidates, but from early on in this presidential election cycle I have not supported the candidacy of Senator John McCain. For years, I have received direct mail appeals from John McCain to send him money for one thing or another, while at the same time he was on television in Washington railing against other people and their campaign money raising tactics. To me, McCain looked angry Friday night in that Mississippi debate – while Obama look poised and in control.

Now all eyes will turn to the VP debate later this week between Gov. Palin and Sen. Biden. Right now, I believe that Gov. Palin could find herself in trouble at that debate if her posture and knowledge of world issues does not improve over what she told Katie Couric in an interview last week on CBS News. While Friday night's debate at Ole Miss in Mississippi should have been Senator McCain's strong suit considering his years of experience in the US Senate dealing with important foreign policy issues, in the end it turns out that Obama won that debate and that news could not be sitting well for McCain's campaign because, in the next debate – he (McCain) will be forced to deal with domestic issues, like the struggling US economy.

Title: New Polls Reveal That Obama Won The Debate, Friday
Written: September 28 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Wall Street Bailout Deal Reached, Devil Is In The Details?

I guess it is good news to report that early this morning Congress reached a deal in principle to bailout some large companies on Wall Street by purchasing their bad mortgage loans. As is always the case in legislation coming out of the US Congress, the 'devil is always in the details' and what most Americans want to know today is, will 'fat cat' Wall Street players that got our country into this mess in the first place - be rewarded for their failures?

Over the course of the past week, millions of Americans have email, written letters and telephone their Member of Congress to stress to them how deeply offended they were when the original draft of this Wall Street bailout package written by the Bush administration was going to allow Wall Street CEO's to keep their 'golden parachute' benefits even after they sold all of these bad loans, approved by them, to the US taxpayers.

There has been a huge disconnect on Wall Street from the average American for decades as the rules most of us abide by in our daily lives are laughed at by Wall Street titans as they make money when they succeed and sometimes make even more money when they fail. My hope is that this disconnect between Wall Street CEO's and regular Americans will be settled in favor of doing what's right in this new Wall Street bailout package. I guess we will all see if Wall Street really got the message from the American people and Members of Congress when they start handing out their usually huge Christmas bonuses in December.

Title: Wall Street Bailout Deal Reached, Devil Is In The Details?
Written: September 28 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Tina Fey Back On SNL As Gov. Sarah Palin Of Alaska

While last night's appearance by Tina Fey, playing Gov. Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live (SNL) was not as good as the first time she played that part a couple of weeks ago, at the end of tonight's skit, I was still laughing and watching with amazement at how much Tina Fey looks like and sounds like Gov. Palin.

While watching Tina Fey on SNL last night, my mind was racing at what she and the other people at Saturday Night Live have in store for us next weekend after the vice presidential debate between Gov. Palin and Sen. Biden. When you consider how much good and funny material will become available after that nationally televised debate, if Tina Fey is once again playing Sarah Palin next weekend on SNL – that show could set a ratings record for the program.

Last week, Tina Fey won an Emmy Award for her work on '30 Rock' and most certainly she deserves an Emmy, as well, for her portrayal of Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live. In the world of comedy right now, Tina Fey is the funniest person on television and the reason people like to watch her is because she takes the time to get her impersonations of famous people like Gov. Palin down pat before she goes on the air and knocks her performance right out of the ballpark.

Title: Tina Fey Back On SNL As Gov. Sarah Palin Of Alaska
Written: September 28 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Secretary Of Treasury Paulson Appears On 60 Minutes

Later tonight the Secretary of the Treasury, Henry Paulson Jr., will appear on the national television program, '60 Minutes'. This weekend, members of the 60 Minutes news magazine crew have been following Secretary Paulson around as he has worked non stop to try and find a bailout package that can pass the US Congress before financial markets open later tonight in Japan.

Right now, there are no positive signs that the Congress will reach agreement by later tonight to stop what has been described as a depression area crash of worldwide stock markets tomorrow morning. I actually read one report coming out of Capital Hill tonight that said Treasury Secretary Paulson told some Member of Congress that the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DOW) could fall 4000 point or more this week if Congress fails to act on this controversial Wall Street bailout package.

While large numbers like a 4000 point drop in the DOW within a five day period of time will catch the attention of most people, there are still skeptics in this country that believe that this 'sky is falling' talk coming from Paulson and President Bush is over exaggerated. My guess is that when all the dust settles in Washington later today, Congress will take the safe approach and bailout Wall Street because if they don't and a massive recession or depression follows – they will be forced to take the blame.

Title: Secretary Of Treasury Paulson Appears On 60 Minutes
Written: September 28 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Slowing Economy Hurts Restaurants As Americans Stay Home

For the past couple of years, in my hometown of Waco, Texas - there have been dozens of new restaurants open with most of them being large restaurant chains that have hundreds, if not thousands, of locations around the country. While it is wonderful for consumers to have a wide variety of choices when their decide to eat out, in recent weeks I have noticed that there are fewer cars in the parking lots of most restaurants and my gut feeling is that the slowing of the US economy is the main reason some of these restaurants are not attracting as many customers as before.

While right now Wall Street is in a full meltdown because they made too many bad mortgage loans, could it be that the US restaurant business will be the next casualty of a slowing US economy? My guess is yes, restaurants both locally owned or as part of a national franchise are going to equally suffer as American consumers continue to tighten their belts and look for new ways to save money. Not only does it cost more money for most families to eat out than it does to prepare their meals at home, there is also not the added cost of expensive gasoline to get them from their home to a restaurant.

In previous hard financial times, Americans have cut back on many things to help them make ends meet. Usually the first thing that suffers during recessionary times is the travel business which includes airlines and hotels. Then if the economy does not improve, the second level of businesses that are hurt are entertainment venues and restaurants. I believe restaurants are already being hurt by this current slow down in the US economy and unfortunately it will get worse before in gets better because almost everyone agrees that the US economy has yet to hit bottom.

Title: Slowing Economy Hurts Restaurants As Americans Stay Home
Written: September 27 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Tweaking Treewalk DNS For Windows XP/FireFox

A few months ago I made a switch from DSL to cable broadband Internet service. While that transition was smooth for the most part, there was a DNS issue with cable that I did not experience while using DSL. That issue revolved around bad DNS caching or no DNS look up at all which lead my browser to an ugly 'that URL cannot be resolved page'. I solved that problem by installing my own DNS look up and caching services with a program called 'Treewalk'. If you ever have problems with your cable company resolving DNS look ups or you just want to speed up the loading of pages on the Internet – then Treewalk is for you.

The great thing about Treewalk is that is it small and easy to install on Windows XP. In addition to increasing the speed at which web pages will load, Treewalk also reduces greatly the risk of being directed to the wrong website through an illegal process known as DNS cloaking. Since Treewalk communicates directly with the root servers at ICANN and all DNS cache is stored on your personal computer, there is less chance that somewhere along the Internet chain your DNS data will become compromised by hackers.

There are also some good tweaks that I have made to my home computer running Windows XP that has increased the speed and reliability of Treewalk, as well. The first thing I did was to disable DNS caching in Firefox and then I disabled DNS caching as well with my Windows XP operating system. While disabling DNS caching in Firefox is pretty simple and free of risk, disabling the DNS caching option in Windows XP requires changing the system registry and if it's not done right, your system could become unusable – so proceed with care.

Click Here – to find instructions on how to disable DNS caching in Firefox.

Click Here – to find instructions on how to stop DNS caching in Windows.

Title: Tweaking Treewalk DNS For Windows XP/FireFox
Written: September 27 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Wall Street Bailout Keeps Congress At Work All Weekend

Since most people don't think Members of Congress work that hard to begin with, there will be little sympathy for these men and women that were elected by Americans to do this nations business as they work long hours this weekend to try and figure out a way to save Wall Street - while at the same time not angering everyone else, back home, in the process. If Members of Congress can accomplish that, then they truly have earned their pay this week and they might even get reelected in November.

The level of anger I have heard from my friends and neighbors this week, toward Congress and President Bush, is at a level I have not seen in my lifetime. Almost all Americans are 'sick and tired' of Wall Street titans being allowed to run their companies into the ground and then be financially rewarded by those same companies when they are pushed out the door. The average worker at these poorly managed companies are usually fired and forced to seek new employment even though they did nothing wrong and played by the rules.

These kind of 'golden parachute' deals by 'fat cat' CEO's on Wall Street have been business as usual there for decades. However, the anger level of the average American did not reach a boiling point until about one week ago when President Bush decided it was in the best interest of this nation to bailout these lousy business men and woman with our tax dollars and also allow them to keep their lucrative severance packages, as well. From everything I have read, Congress has got that message loud and clear and they have no intention of letting these poor business leaders pull another 'fast one', this time on American taxpayers.

Title: Wall Street Bailout Keeps Congress At Work All Weekend
Written: September 27 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Butch Cassidy Actor, Paul Newman, Dead Age 83

It was very sad news for me when I heard Saturday morning that one of my all time favorite actors, Paul Newman, had died at the age of 83. Wow, when it comes to the use of the term 'Superstar' that label fits perfectly below a picture of Paul Newman hanging on some wall anywhere. While it is impossible for me to talk about all of the movies that Paul Newman made great over the years, there are a few films that stand out in my mind and others both in the United States and around the world as we reflect on the life this great actor.

The first time I ever heard the name Paul Newman was when I was still just a young boy growing up in a small farming town in the Texas panhandle. At that time, my mother and father had just returned home from watching a new movie called 'Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid'. For days, both my mom and dad talked about how much they enjoyed this movie and also the actors that made it great – Paul Newman and Robert Redford.

As I grew into a man, there were many other movies that were taken from average to great by the acting abilities of Paul Newman, too. Some of my favorites included: 'The Towering Inferno', 'The Sting' and 'The Color of Money'. In so many ways, the best of the best in Hollywood died when Paul Newman passed away today. Newman's death reminds me and many other's from my generation that our time too will come to an end on this Earth sooner than we might like. RIP Paul Newman – the greatest actor of my generation.

Title: Butch Cassidy Actor, Paul Newman, Dead Age 83
Written: September 27 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

McCain Looked Angry During Last Night's Debate

I missed the first 45 minutes of last night's presidential debate between John McCain and Barack Obama from Mississippi. That means that I missed the most important part of the debate which dealt with the economy and the wisdom of the Wall Street bailout package. When I started watching the debate, Obama and McCain were talking about foreign policy and whether or not is was wise for a US President to talk to crazy leaders like the President of Iran.

As I sat down with a cold soft drink to watch the last half of last night's presidential debate, it appear to me that John McCain was either nervous or very angry inside. My personal opinion is that McCain was angry at many of the things being said about him by Obama. Almost everyone has read at least one story about Senator McCain explosive temper and for a few minutes last night – I thought he was going to blow up on national television in front of the whole country.

From what I saw in last night's presidential debate from Mississippi, few minds were changed on which man would do a better job running the country for the next four years. McCain supporters should have been pleased with the performance of their candidate and Obama supporter most likely felt the same way. Right now, when a presidential debate is settled as a draw – the big loser is going to be Senator McCain because he has fallen behind in most polls by up to 10 points. While it is never a good idea to simply coast when running for President, it is Senator McCain that needs to gain the most ground between now and election day.

Title: McCain Looked Angry During Last Night's Debate
Written: September 27 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Friday, September 26, 2008

Friday's Obama/McCain Debate Could Set A Ratings Record

There are some people that believe tonight's Mississippi debate between Senator Barack Obama and John McCain could draw an audience as high as 100 million people. To put that number in prospective, that is about the same number of people that watch the Superbowl each year. In my memory, there has never been a televised presidential debate that has drawn 100 million people and the reason so many Americans are planning on watching the Obama/McCain debate tonight is because they are scared to death that their jobs and retirement savings are at risk.

While I believe John McCain's decision to first drop out of tonight's debate and then decide to attend was a political stunt, right now – few Americans are going to really care about all of this political posturing, but instead will be hanging on every word said by these two men at tonight's Mississippi presidential debate. While it is sad that it took a major economic crisis for Americans to, once again, engage in US political debate – none the less it is great that so many Americans are paying attention to this years presidential contest between McCain and Obama.

All of this newly found public attention to politics is also causing Members of Congress to more closely listen to the folks back home when voting on the massive Wall Street bailout package proposed by President Bush. Unlike previous major votes in the US Congress that were pretty much ignored by most Americans – this Wall Street bailout vote will be watched by hundreds of millions of Americans. The people that serve in Congress are not stupid when it comes to their job. All of them know when the American people are engaged in the political process and when they are ignoring the happenings in D.C.. Right now, the American people are very engaged in what Congress is doing and that is why President Bush's taxpayer bailout of Wall Street was not just 'rubber stamped' in Congress with only limited debate.

Title: Friday's Obama/McCain Debate Could Set A Ratings Record
Written: September 26 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Letterman Angry At McCain Snub This Week

It is understandable why David Letterman is angry at Senator John McCain because McCain did snub Letterman and his show when he canceled an appearance there only hours before that show was to be taped for broadcast later in the day. However, David Letterman is now crossing the line and acting like a little boy in a sandbox with his tirades against Senator McCain. It is true that Senator McCain lied to David Letterman's staff about why he was canceling his appearance on the show and Letterman went out of his way to prove that McCain was lying by showing Senator McCain being interviewed by Katie Couric at the same time he was suppose to be sitting down with Letterman.

Let's be honest here, everyone knows that David Letterman is pro democrats and as far as I am concerned that is alright by me. Where Letterman starts looking silly and petty is when he begins to act like his show is more important than CBS News when it comes to covering the pros and cons of this whole Wall Street bailout mess. I believe that David Letterman has been allowed to do his own thing for so long at CBS News without reprimand – that he now believes he can say and do anything he pleases with negative consequences from CBS management.

I personally like to watch the David Letterman Show because on most night's he is funnier, to me, than Jay Leno. When I do watch the David Letterman Show I am less impressed by his biased political commentary than with some of the other humor he uses about other everyday things that are not so important. I hope David Letterman moves away from this grudge match with Senator McCain soon - because if he does not it will be Letterman, in the end, that will look foolish and silly to the American people.

Title: Letterman Angry At McCain Snub This Week
Written: September 26 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

McCain's Debate Stunt Backfires, Looks Foolish To Some

In a world of 'flip-flop's', Senator John McCain's decision to first not attend tonight's debate in Mississippi with Senator Barack Obama, then change his mind within 48 hours - has to be one of the biggest and fastest 'flip-flops' in US political history. While most people do not follow the day in and day out tracking polls of this presidential campaign, there are some political junkies, like me, that do.

About one week ago, polling data started going against Senator McCain as two events, which worked together, began to drag McCain's approval with voters down quickly. 1st: ) the new began to wear off of his VP pick of Gov. Sarah Palin as more probing question were being asked of her working knowledge of domestic and foreign affairs. 2nd: ) the meltdown and potential bailout of Wall Street situation turnout out to be a big loser for President Bush, because not only did he describe that situation as a major financial crisis – but most Americans blamed the President and Republicans for creating it.

Right now, this presidential campaign is all but over unless Senator Obama makes a monumental mistake or embarrassing misstatement of fact over the next month. As the poll spread continues to grow and Barack Obama starts to pull out in front of McCain, get ready for the next and last big stunt to be pulled by the McCain campaign - which will be born out of desperation. While I don't know what that stunt might be, it most certainly will be labeled as an October election surprise designed to discredit Senator Obama and slow his path toward victory in November.

Title: McCain's Debate Stunt Backfires, Looks Foolish To Some
Written: September 26 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

McCain Will Attend Tonight's Debate In Mississippi

Only two days ago, Senator John McCain said that he believed tonight's presidential debate in Mississippi should be postponed so he and Senator Barack Obama could spend all of their time working on a Wall Street bailout package in Washington. Today is debate day for Obama and McCain and rather than staying in Washington to fix Wall Street's problems with our tax dollars, McCain has decided he will attend tonight's debate in Mississippi and restart he presidential campaign.

Most experts that follow presidential elections knew that Senator McCain's decision to suspend his campaign and not attend tonight's debate was nothing more than another publicity stunt designed to once again jump start his struggling campaign. Right now, if my blog poll is to be believed – and it has been right on with public opinion polls in the past, Senator McCain is falling way behind Senator Obama and I believe the main reason for that drop is because the US economy is falling apart and most Americans blame President Bush for the problem.

Tonight's presidential debate in Mississippi will most certainly be watched by tens of millions of Americans because most average folks have been scared to death by the tone of President Bush as he describes what will happen to the US economy if the taxpayers don't spend $700 billion dollars to bailout Wall Street. While both candidates will be standing at tonight's debate in Mississippi, figuratively speaking – Senator McCain is going to be on the 'hot seat' as he is forced to answer not only some tough questions about foreign policy, but most certainly some questions will pop up about the Wall Street bailout package - which will draw attention to Senator McCain's close ties to President Bush.

Title: McCain Will Attend Tonight's Debate In Mississippi
Written: September 26 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

WaMu Failure Was 10 Times Larger Than IndyMac Bank

While it has been widely reported that Thursday's take over of WaMu Bank was the largest government take over of any bank in US history, I thought it might be important to point out how much larger the failure of WaMu was compared to the recent failure of IndyMac Bank. When IndyMac Bank failed a few months ago it's assets were worth about $40 billion. Yesterday's FDIC take over of WaMu Bank is almost ten times larger than the failure of IndyMac Bank with WaMu Bank assets currently valued at about $310 billion. While Indymac Bank received more media attention than today's failure of WaMu, both of these failures should be watched closely because there will be more bank failures to come and it is likely that even a larger bank than WaMu will fail in the near future.

The reason why WaMu's failure is not being reported as widely as the failure of Indymac Bank a few months ago is because JP Morgan Chase acquired this financial institution and no money will be taken from the FDIC insurance fund, like what was the case when Indymac Bank failed a few months ago. However, anytime a major bank with over $300 billion in assets fails it is and should be covered as a big story. In my area, there are no WaMu bank locations - so the only thing I know about this bank is their funny television commercials that have been running constantly on cable television for years.

As Congress and President Bush work to find some kind of way to bailout Wall Street in a politically charged election year, large banks will continue to fail and US credit markets will continue to tighten. My personal belief is that these troubled banks are going to fail anyway, at some future date, and with the taxpayer eventually being forced to pick up the tab for all of these bank failures – why don't we just wait until the banks go out of business and then bail out the assets at pennies on the dollar through bankruptcy court? Right now, Members of Congress and President Bush are fighting over whether or not these stupid CEO's will still receive their million dollar bonus packages if the government buys their bad loans. Instead, why don't we (the government) just wait and let these banks fail? Then the taxpayers will not only get these potentially profitable troubled mortgage loans, but they will also be able to obtain them without rewarding these sorry bank CEO's that created this mess in the first place?

Title: WaMu Failure Was 10 Times Larger Than IndyMac Bank
Written: September 26 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Secretary Paulson From One Knee Begs Pelosi At White House

There are rumors circulating the Internet tonight that in a closed door meeting today at the White House that Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson Jr. actually got down on one knee and begged Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi not to withdraw democratic support for the Bush Wall Street bailout package just because some Republicans are not signing on like they had hoped a few days ago. While I was not in the room when this supposed down on one knee event happened, if it turns out to indeed be true – I am now more against this bailout than ever because there is something more than just concern about the US economy going on here.

Treasury Secretary Paulson in the retired CEO of one of the biggest investment banks on Wall Street. A company by the name of Goldman Sachs. To most Americans the only time they ever hear the name of Goldman Sachs is at Christmas time when their annual million dollar bonuses are passed out to employees that made this company a bunch of money. Within the past couple of years, there were times when Goldman Sachs' average Christmas bonus worked out to about $500,000 per employee. When most Americans read stories about these huge bonuses when they are trying to scrap by to live on less that $50,000 for the full years – it does create anger and yes even resentment among some.

Now the former leader of Goldman Sachs has reported gone down on one knee to beg Nancy Pelosi for her continued support. From my lay persons prospective this is just another example of why it might be in the long term interest of the United States to let these big banks fail and then let the government take them over through the FDIC and other bankruptcy laws. After they are out of business, then the taxpayers can buy these bad loans at a tremendous discount, help profit the US Treasury and also insure than none of the bad actors in this process are still in charge when all the dust settles.

Title: Secretary Paulson From One Knee Begs Pelosi At White House
Written: September 26 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Finally, GOP Members Of Congress Grow Some Backbone

Earlier today, I wrote that the Congress and President Bush had reached a compromise on the 700 billion dollar bailout package of Wall Street and I based that post on major news sources like CNN. Late tonight, it is clear that the Congress is not near an agreement and the one group of people that are standing in the way of this massive welfare bailout of Wall Street becoming law are conservative Republicans in the US House of Representatives.

I can't remember the last time I was proud of GOP Members of the US House of Representatives. Unfortunately, in recent years they have done exactly what President Bush told them to do and sometimes those positions were completely against the conservative principles that they ran on to get elected to Congress in the first place. What I believe is happening here is that voters in these congressional districts are calling their Member of Congress with their voices filled with outrage about this bailout of the super rich on Wall Street. In fact, one representative said today on television that so far his office has received no calls in support of this bailout while thousands of people have called to oppose it.

This Wall Street bailout issue has united Americans in more ways than anything else since September 11th, 2001. Democrats, Republicans and Independents are all against this Wall Street bailout package even though their reasons for opposing it vary wildly. The American people are basic good, hard working and decent people that believe if you follow the rules you can be rewarded for your hard work. This President Bush lead bailout of Wall Street financial companies flies right in the face of those basic American principles as it rewards failure and puts the cost of that failure on the backs of taxpayers.

Title: Finally, GOP Members Of Congress Grow Some Backbone
Written: September 25 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Financial Bailout Of Wall Street, Done Deal

According to some sources in Washington, a deal has been reached in Congress that will allow billions of dollars of taxpayer money to be used by the Treasury Secretary to bailout troubled banks by buying some of their bad loans. Almost everyone on Wall Street along with President Bush have said that this legislation had to be passed by the end of this week in order to avoid a major catastrophe in the US economy.

Well, it looks like President Bush used fear to get his way once again in the Congress and if it is later proven that he somehow exaggerated the seriousness of this problem, there should be a way for the government to make sure that he pays for it. It is possible that this time, President Bush was telling the truth when it came to the seriousness of this crisis on Wall Street and if that is the case then he did the right thing.

In hindsight, millions of American believe that President Bush trumped up the severity of the weapons of mass destruction charges against Saddam Hussein in order to rush through the Congress an Act of War resolution against Iraq. Then later, it turned out that Iraq was not as major of a threat to the American people as President Bush first proclaimed. This whole week as the President was pushing Congress to pass this Wall Street bailout plan, my mind kept thinking back to the Iraq War debate in Congress and how President Bush pushed through his war resolution using the case that America was in immediate danger if the US did not attack Iraq, soon.

My hope is that President Bush did not once again trump something up when he described the seriousness of this Wall Street crisis just to bailout huge companies and their CEO's that faced financial ruin without taxpayer intervention. In a free nation, like the United States, eventually the truth will be learned about situations like this one and if the last major act of President Bush's administration was to pull a fast one on the American people, once again, almost all Americans will demand that some kind of punitive action be taken against George W. Bush after he leaves office in January.

Title: Financial Bailout Of Wall Street, Done Deal
Written: September 25 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Financial 'D Day' Approaches The US Economy

If the experts in Washington and on Wall Street are to be believed, somewhere around 4pm this afternoon is the equivalent of an event called 'D Day' in World War II as Congress works against the clock to try and save the US financial markets from going into a complete meltdown. Last night President Bush went on national television to try and convince a skeptical public that first:) this crisis is real and second:) that the only way it can be prevented is for the US taxpayers to buy the bad debt of public companies that made bad mortgage loans.

Considering that most Americans are already suffering with stagnant or non existent wage increases, while at the same time the price of everything else they buy is going up at record levels – the idea that they (the taxpayers) should foot the bill to bailout 'fat cats' on Wall Street is not an easy sell and it has also been made more difficult because a national election is taking place in less than two months. For most average Americans they believe it is wrong to reward millionaires on Wall Street after those same wealthy Americans made terrible choices when it came to approving people for mortgage loans.

While I still remain against this government bailout of Wall Street based on a right v. wrong position. In the end, it might need to be done or the consequences might be even larger than I first imagined. That said, it is 100% necessary for Congress and President Bush to include tough new regulations of Wall Street in any bailout package because like most other events – history will repeat itself if we don't learn from today's mistakes. Within the next day, Congress is expected to approve the spending of one trillion dollars of our tax money with less that a weeks worth of debate – I certainly hope this is the last time that the Congress and the American people are blindsided by such a large program and given such a short time window in order to make a decision on what to do.

Title: Financial 'D Day' Approaches The US Economy
Written: September 25 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Deregulation Does Not Always Work, Lead To Wall Street Crisis

Many conservatives, including myself, have believed for years that the best way to improve the economy was to remove government oversight from large companies which would allow them to more easily expand. Just like with other good ideas that often times look good on paper, but fail miserable when put into action - the idea that American business would help grow the overall economy if they were regulated less turned out to be wrong. Instead, the 'get rich quick' crowd took over Wall Street and in the end the US taxpayers are having to clean up the mess.

While there will still be a few deep conservatives continuing to preach the benefits of less government regulation of business, once Congress and the President sign legislation to bailout Wall Street, their numbers will be greatly decreased. It's time for conservatives to face some harsh realities about their ideological belief system. While it is true that government regulation is a giant pain in the butt for business, in the end most businesses will fall victim to ideas like no money down mortgages from quick talking brokers again in the future if the government does not tell them it's against the rules.

For most conservatives, we believe that the government is the cause of most problems because we prize freedom of choice above all other liberties this great nation has to offer. However, when a business decides to sell stock to the public or seeks loans from a federally insured bank - then it is the federal government that must regulate that business in order to stop another American financial tragedy in the future. While the idea of complete and total deregulation is a noble one on paper, in reality that type of thinking is what got us into this financial mess that will cost over one trillion tax dollars to get out of and it will lead us there once again if government does not take a proactive role to make sure that short term investment strategies, lead by 'get rich quick' CEO's, are not running the American financial system.

Title: Deregulation Does Not Always Work, Lead To Wall Street Crisis
Written: September 25 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Rich Will Get Richer During Wall Street Bailout

The most rich people in the world are set to get even richer as the US economy slides toward lower levels. That is the way things have worked in the world for centuries and no matter how hard regular Americans try to make sure that the richest among us don't take advantage of the American taxpayers after the government approves this latest Wall Street bailout package, in the end, that fact will prove to have happened once again. Rich people are not smarter than poor people, but instead they just have an ability to work the American system for their own benefit even during hard times.

The biggest difference between an average American and one that makes millions or billions of dollar per year is very simple. Rich people buy things at bargain basement prices when everyone else is selling. The reason the rich are always able to buy stocks, property or homes when the market is at an all time low is because they have a simple system of doing the opposite thing that most Americans do. Let's face it, most of us are more interested in following the crowd than standing out and doing something that everyone else we know believes to be stupid. To a rich person, the more people that are against what they are doing - the better for them financially.

When you combine the ego of wanting to go along to fit in and the stress that is created on the human body when you go against what everyone else is doing, it is easy to see why the rich are a special breed - but at the same time there is really nothing special other than their discipline to always do the opposite of what everyone else does. Right now, while everyone I know is running away from investments in stocks and financial companies, there are a few rich people that have been sitting on a boatload of cash just waiting for this opportunity to put that cash to work at pennies on the dollar in companies that someday could be selling for hundreds of dollars per share.

Title: Rich Will Get Richer During Wall Street Bailout
Written: September 25 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

President Bush To Americans, 'The Sky Is Falling'

When I was a kid there was a cartoon on television that had a character by the name of 'Chicken Little' that walked around all the time saying - 'the sky is falling'. Tonight, as I watched President Bush deliver his prime-time address to the nation about the calamity that will happen to the United States if Congress does not pass his Wall Street bailout package, the first thing I thought of was that old cartoon from the 1970's staring Chicken Little. I am not smart enough to know for sure if President Bush is telling the truth or not, but I have been mislead by him before with these types of drastic prediction which soon lead to him getting his way with the Congress.

A famous American saying also comes to mind when thinking about President Bush's speech to the nation tonight. That story is one we have all heard before about the little boy that cried wolf one too many times, was eventually ignored and when he really did encounter a wolf, it ate him because no one believe his cries because all of his credibility was lost because of previous false alarms. Some many times in the past from the War in Iraq to national security discussion that took away many of our freedoms, President Bush declared that Congress must act right away or something bad would happen to the country.

I guess it's possible that I am just more burned out on President Bush than many other Americans because I think he did himself and his Wall Street bailout package a disservice tonight when he went on national TV and tried to scare the American people, once again, into trusting him without much evidence to back up his words. From a guy that voted for President Bush twice, I have lost faith in his ability to tell the truth when he believes the ends justify the means. Congress has a lot of work ahead of them this week and while something may need to be done to prevent a total meltdown of the US economy, I frankly trust Congress more than President Bush when it comes to doing the right thing on Wall Street.

Title: President Bush To Americans, 'The Sky Is Falling'
Written: September 24 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Bush/Obama/McCain Meet At the White House Tomorrow

It should be an interesting meeting tomorrow as President Bush Barack Obama and John McCain all get together, at President Bush's request at the White House, to discuss ways of getting a Wall Street bailout package passed through Congress. Today was filled with interesting back and forth comments between the McCain and Obama campaigns and near the end of the day Senator McCain said he was suspending his campaign until this new law could be molded and passed in the Congress.

John McCain also wants to delay Friday night's debate so he and Senator Obama can stay in Washington and finish up action on this expensive piece of legislation. At first, I thought I was the only person that believed this bailout of Wall Street idea was stupid. However, I must have been wrong about that media lead assumption because Members of Congress from both political parties are not following the lead of President Bush and giving the Treasury Secretary blank check authority to spend almost one trillion dollars to bailout Wall Street at his own personal discretion.

In my opinion, the best thing going for taxpayers right now is the nearness of the November election because all Members of Congress will be forced to really sit back and decide what the voters want without being lead around by lobbyist like they are most of their congressional terms. Since the next election is less than a month and a half away, any mistake made by Congress will be held personally against them in November and old time veterans of Congress certainly know how elections can turn on a dime when this much taxpayer money is at stake.

Title: Bush/Obama/McCain Meet At the White House Tomorrow
Written: September 24 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

FBI Investigates Wall Street Corruption

While it might seem like it is coming too late for some people, the FBI announced yesterday that they are investigating top officials at Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae and AIG to see if laws were broken by individuals of those companies. We all remember Enron and how the bad and illegal actions of a few people at the very top of that company caused a giant on Wall Street to eventually fail and with it take the hard earned savings and retirement accounts down to worthless.

From my point of view, the Bush administration has been asleep at the wheel when it comes to making sure that high flying Wall Street companies were acting in an ethical and legal manner. For years, conservative Republicans had rejoiced in the wrong headed idea that if government just stayed out of the way, business (Wall Street), not only would grow and expand the economy - but also all Americans would experience a better way of life. Of course, that way of thinking has been proven wrong now as huge companies risked everything to get involved in risky mortgage loans which have driven some of them out-of-business.

Now the government is debating whether or not the US taxpayers should bailout the sins of Wall Street. While I believe the idea of 'throwing good money after bad' is not a good solution, I am please to see the FBI moving forward to make sure that the people that ran these huge public companies did not break the law. It is understandable that some companies might fail even if no laws were broken. However, when so many large companies fail within a short period of time - there is a good chance that some of the actions taken by corporate leaders were not only risky - but also illegal.

Title: FBI Investigates Wall Street Corruption
Written: September 24 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Warren Buffett Steadies Financial Markets

There are only a few people in the world that can move financial markets just by what they say or more especially by what they do. One of those people is Warren Buffett and with his action yesterday to buy into Goldman Sachs, there was a certain steadying of US financial markets at the opening of this mornings trading on Wall Street. From an investor point of view, the reputation of Warren Buffett is unsurpassed because during bull and bear markets in the past – Buffett has always found a way to make money and be on the right side of trades for decades.

Today, more hearings will be conducted on Capitol Hill in regards to the Bush administrations request to spend almost one trillion dollars to bailout the bad leading practices of some Wall Street companies. However, no one that will testify in today's congressional hearings has the same clout and power as this one elderly man from Omaha Nebraska - who has been bring home the bacon for people invested in his company, Berkshire Hathaway, for decades.

In financial markets there have always been fast talking pitch men that act like they know what they are talking about when investing on Wall Street. These types of pitchmen are 'here today and gone tomorrow' and usually when they disappear their pockets are loaded with the cash of ordinary Americans who received little in benefit from their advice. In contrast, investors that have followed the long term guidance of Warren Buffett have experienced tremendous investment growth. That is why when a man with the reputation of Warren Buffett invests in a large Wall Street company like Goldman Sachs, not only will people take notice - but millions of others will follow closely behind with their own money.

Title: Warren Buffett Steadies Financial Markets
Written: September 24 2008
2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Grandstanding Kept To A Minimum At Bailout Hearings

For the first time in decades, I watched a US Senate Congressional hearing today that was more about the actual subject than about individual Senators using their time to grandstand about their opinions and bore the audience with their endless double talk about what is right and wrong. Instead, today's Senate hearings about the Bush Wall Street Bailout Plan were completely different as both the people that were testifying about the importance of this new legislation were humble and in my view the Senators asking the questions were really listening to what was being said by the witnesses, rather than taking all of their allowed time to try and show the American people how smart they are.

The current state of Wall Street right now should be a humbling experience for us all as the very foundation of American capitalism is resting in the hands of a very few smart people that most of us can not keep up with in the debate about the complexities of not only what Wall Street really does, but also what measures it will take to fix this current problem and keep it from happening again. I sure hate to use these words because I know they will come back to haunt me later, but 'I was proud of the US Senate Today'. With their probing and good questions they did that institution proud considering all the other crap that has come out of there in recent years.

Everyone that regularly reads this blog knows my position on this bailout issue and that position has not changed as of yet. I am still against Washington bailing out Wall Street because it sends the wrong message to the rest of American businesses that the taxpayer can always be counted on to bail them out if they get into financial problems created by their own poor choices. I know there are people that believe the US economy will fall apart if this bailout package is not approved, but I am not one of them. Sure, Wall Street will sell off and companies will go out of business without this federal bailout, but will the result be catastrophic event for the United States or a long needed, massive, financial correction?

Title: Grandstanding Kept To A Minimum At Bailout Hearings
Written: September 23 2008
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2005-2008 © Hutch Report

American People Tense As Congress Debates Bailout

Almost everywhere I went today there was tension in the air with regular everyday Americans. While I am not ready to say that all of the current Wall Street Bailout talk was totally to blame for this tension – most certainly it did have something to do with it as all three major cable television networks covered the testimony on Capitol Hill. It's no wonder that most Americans are tense about this Bush bailout package of Wall Street because the price tag of the bailout is not only high, but no one testifying in Congress today could guarantee that this almost one trillion dollars would really solve the problem.

Instead, we have a our Treasury Secretary which is a retired Wall Street guy himself, joining forces with a Federal Reserve Chairman that has a background mainly teaching at the University level. While these two might seem like an odd couple, I did think for the most part they answered questions posed to them by the Congress in a honest and straight forward manner. The real issue that is causing me and other Americans tension is the amount of money that is being asked for in the bailout package and the fact that neither one of these two men can say for sure that they can fix the problem even with all that money.

Most Americans that I talk to do not trust Wall Street to fix itself and they also have deep reservation about how these federal taxpayer bailouts will effect executive compensation and so called 'golden parachute' provisions of corporate CEO's. No CEO wants to give up his well compensated severance package, no matter how bad they mess things up. However, most American are afraid that the Congress will allow the government to continue 'golden parachute' provisions at companies – even when they are bailed out by taxpayer money.

Title: American People Tense As Congress Debates Bailout
Written: September 23 2008
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2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Monday, September 22, 2008

Conservatives Must Dump Bush Now, Not Later After The Election

Over the next few days, President Bush and members of his administration are going to be lobbying the Congress hard to keep in place golden parachute provisions in the new Washington bailout plan of Wall Street. Like at no other time in my lifetime, Americans are watching the election of 2008 very closely and if congressional Republicans do not cut their ties to President Bush who has shown himself to be a liberal Republican over the past few years and quickly move back to the format of the late President Ronald Regan on fiscal policy – there will be no hope for the GOP in the Congress this fall or in the presidential election against Barack Obama.

Most long term members of the Republican Party have known for a long time that GOP elected officials will distance themselves from President Bush once the November elections are over. However, now that President Bush is advocating the continuation of high executive severance packages even for CEO's that knew better than to make these risky investment, Republican leaders in the Congress need to stand up now and distance themselves from President Bush or there may be few of them left in Congress to distance themselves from him after the next election.

While it is very difficult for any political party to turn on their leader, especially when he is so close to leaving office. The bad economic times of today make it necessary for fiscal conservative Republicans to say enough is enough to President Bush and deal him a defeat on this Wall Street bailout package. While it might seem cruel to many party insiders to do such a thing, in reality they don't really have much of a choice. Most Americans blame this current economic mess on Wall Street on the Bush administration and if GOP leaders don't distance themselves from President Bush and these crazy golden parachute policies, they will fail right along with him.

Title: Conservatives Must Dump Bush Now, Not Later After The Election
Written: September 22 2008
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2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Chet Edwards/John Carter Have Deep Concerns About Bailout

My Congressman is a man by the name of Chet Edwards. Until recently most Americans had never heard his name because he does his finest work in Washington working with other Members of Congress to get things done and most of the time he stays away from talking head cable network shows on MSNBC, Fox News and CNN. Millions of other Americans first heard the name of Chet Edwards about one month ago when he was noticed on the short list of VP candidates for Senator Barack Obama. Tonight, on the late local news here in Waco, Texas – it was reported that not only did Chet Edwards have deep reservations about the current Bush bailout package of Wall Street, but the Congressman next door to Edwards, Congressman John Carter – a long time fiscal conservative was also against the current bailout package of Wall Street.

While I was not surprised by Congressman Edwards views on this issues, I was excited to hear that there are still real life fiscal conservatives in the GOP and apparently Congressman John Carter is one of them. For days not I have written about how social conservatives have totally hijacked the Republican Party and in doing so threw lifelong fiscal conservatives like myself under the bus. Even President Bush, a man I voted for twice has proven himself to be only 1/2 conservative and that half revolves around issues of the church like abortion.

Vocal fiscal conservatives have been hard to find in the current Republican Party, but it was a breath of fresh air when I heard for the first time tonight that Congressman John Carter was still one of the good guys when it comes to keeping the United States from falling completely into socialism. As I said earlier, millions of Americans will be watching closely what Congress does over the next few days with this Wall Street bailout package and since all Members of the U.S. House of Representatives are up for reelection in November – which includes Congressman Edwards and Carter, the America people are going to be watching closely to see if their representative is looking out for them or some greedy Wall Street investment banker that wants to keep his Golden Parachute even when he failed his own company.

Title: Chet Edwards/John Carter Have Deep Concerns About Bailout
Written: September 22 2008
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2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Congressional Hearings Start Tomorrow On Wall Street Bailout Package

In some ways it is a wonderful stroke of luck that congressional hearings about the Bush outrageous Wall Street Bailout Package is happening at the same time as the presidential and congressional elections? Why? Well, because the American people from liberals to conservatives to independents are against the bailout of Wall Street millionaires who got themselves into this financial mess because of greed and the powers that be in Congress are getting an earful of heartache from people back home that think, as I do, that this whole Wall Street bailout idea is completely wrong.

Considering we are about a month and a half away from a national presidential and congressional election, all Members of Congress will be listening closely to what the voters back home are saying because if Congress messes this bailout package up there may be no forgiveness coming from the voters in such a short period of time before they head to the polls and vote. In reality, right now is the absolute best time to have Congress review this Bush bailout package because unlike most other times of the year – lobbyist will be forced to take a backseat to the voters because of the closeness of the next election.

Just within the past couple of days, the American people have been letting their Members of Congress know their real feelings about this Wall Street bailout and from the reports coming out of Congress, they are listening to the will of the people on this critical issue. Right now every Member of Congress is in the spotlight and on the hot seat at the same time because millions of Americans back home will judge them on this one issue more than anything else in the November election. I don't have a clue how this debate will end, but it is going to be interesting to watch as President Bush and some Republicans fight for golden parachute provision in this bailout of the very people that bankrupted their company.

Title: Congressional Hearings Start Tomorrow On Wall Street Bailout Package
Written: September 22 2008
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2005-2008 © Hutch Report

Congress Will Not Rubber Stamp Bush's Wall Street Bailout

All I can say is that Members of Congress are listening to people back home who are outraged over this massive Wall Street bailout package being offered by President Bush. On Friday, it seem all but certain that Congress would just go long with President Bush and bailout Wall Street to the tune of almost one trillion dollars. However, over the weekend and today – my guess is that Members of Congress have been overloaded with emails, telephone calls and faxes from regular Americans that are expressing outrage at this huge piece of corporate welfare disguised as being in the best interest of the US economy.

While most Americans live their lives in a state of gray, they all know what is right and wrong in government and business and this crazy Wall Street bailout idea from President Bush has hit a cord not only with Democrats, but also with fiscal conservatives that are in a state of shock that such a welfare driven program for Wall Street was proposed by a President that calls himself a conservative. All I can say is, keep those congressional phone calls and emails coming to your Member of Congress and tell them to say no to this half baked idea to save Wall Street from itself.

I still have a deep feeling down deep inside my gut that President Bush will eventually get his way again and get Congress to bailout Wall Street in some form or fashion. However, it is critical that golden parachutes and excessive executive compensation be taken out of this legislation so the people that messed up Wall Street don't profit from their own mistakes. Right now, President Bush wants to continue the practice of rewarding the failure of bad CEO's that ran their companies into the ground. However, the Congress has a chance to do the right thing here and hopefully they are listening to the people back home which will be giving many of them a report card on their job performance in less than two months.

Title: Congress Will Not Rubber Stamp Bush's Wall Street Bailout
Written: September 22 2008
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