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Political notes from Free Press staff writers Terri Hallenbeck, Sam Hemingway and Nancy Remsen



Fools on the Hill

It was a tough day Wednesday on Capitol Hill for the captains of the financial industry, and for that you can thank our own sharp-tongued Senator Bernie Sanders, at least in part.

A group of the money men made appearances before the House Banking Committee that Sanders once served on and things didn't go well, even when the bankers tried to apologize for the mess they've made of things.

“You come here today on your bicycles after buying Girl Scout cookies and helping out Mother Teresa,” growled Rep. Michael Capuano, D-Mass. “You’re saying, ’We’re sorry. We didn’t mean it. We won’t do it again. Trust us.’ I have some people in my (district) who have robbed some of your banks and they say the same thing.”

Ouch. That's gotta hurt.

Sanders, who now sits on the Senate Banking Committee, did not exactly provide a warm welcome to new Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner when Geithner showed up for his own private grilling.

Sanders let Geithner know what he tought of the perceived reluctance of the Obama administration to insist on the removal of people like the head of Goldman Sachs as a pre-condition to receiviing government help.

The exchange, and more, was featured on an ABC News online report that was promptly posted on Sanders' Web site. To read it for yourself, click HERE.

“You have a person who made hundreds of millions for himself and he led his institution and helped cause a great financial crisis," Sanders said to Geithner at one point. "We have put as taxpayers $10 billion to bail him out and we have no say as to whether or not he will stay on the job?”

Geithner told Sanders there would be times the government would set "tough conditions" for the management of such companies, but said in Goldman Sach's cases, he expected he would let the company's board of directors make the call.

“We’re not going to fire the leadership?” Sanders fumed. "We’re going to keep these same guys who caused the crisis in power and who made huge sums of money?"

So what do you think? Is it practical to show these guys the door? Will their replacements be any better? And should Geithner and the feds have that kind of power in the first place?

Your turn.

-- Sam Hemingway

-- Sam Hemingway

“We’re not going to fire the leadership?” Sanders fumed. "We’re going to keep these same guys who caused the crisis in power and who made huge sums of money?"

Sanders' envy is palpable.
Geithner was confused and still trying to figure out Turbbo Tax.
It is ok to terminate the CEO's who caused the damage BUT if they worked for Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac they would be rewarded/given millions and patted on the back- double standards.
When is Chris Dodd going to jail for his criminal malfeasance in getting himself a "friend of Angelo" sweetheart deal from Coutrywide, a bank he was supposed to regulate? When will Franklin Raines and the rest of the connected dims like Barney Frank answer for their lack of action against Fanny Mae and Freddy Mac which caused this whole mess to begin with? When will jw realize that Bush started his term with the NASDAQ collapse and the Clinton recession that started in late 2000, not to mention a decimated intelligence agency, reduced troop strength, and a disgraced executive office stained by the degeneracy and felony conviction of it's former occupant? And did anyone hear Bush whine daily about "all of this stuff I inherited" like the blubbering Obama and company? Just asking.
Dodd will go to jail about the same time W and company do.
Thats for sure!
After Leaky Leahy gets all his Bush subpoenas typed he will type one for Chris Dodds and Charlie Rangel.
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