Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Tag Archives: Bill Clinton

HHS Sebelius resigns, to be Replaced by Budget Director Burwell

Official portrait of United States Health and ...

Few noticed but at last week’s Rose Garden announcement by the president that his administration’s signature healthcare initiative had exceeded his 7 million signups goal by the end of March, he failed to mention Kathleen Sebelius’ name even though she was sitting right in front of him. On Thursday Sebelius made it official: she was leaving her post as head of Health and Human Services.

More than a month earlier

Keep Reading…

Channeling Sisyphus or: How to Get It Wrong Every Single Time by Fundamentally Misunderstanding Human Nature

Taking part in a Nov. 10, 2009, memorial servi...

Taking part in a Nov. 10, 2009, memorial service on Fort Hood, Texas, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama look at the photograph of one of the victims of the Nov. 5 shooting rampage that left 13 dead and 38 wounded. See more at www.army.mil (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, April 4, 2014:

The president thinks he can keep something like the Fort Hood shooting that took place on Wednesday afternoon from happening again. As a starting point, he called out his troops to find out what happened:

My security team is … working … to determine exactly what happened….

We want to assure [everyone that] we are going to get to the bottom of what happened…. We don’t yet know what happened, but obviously that sense of security has been broken once again. We need to find out exactly what happened.

The underlying assumption is the same one he made back in 2009 when Major Hasan murdered 13 soldiers at Fort Hood:

Keep Reading…

Two Fort Hood Shootings: Similarities and Differences

The American flag on Fort Hood, Texas, rests a...

The American flag on Fort Hood, Texas, rests at half-staff on Nov. 10, 2009, during a memorial ceremony honoring the victims of the Nov. 5, shooting rampage that left 13 dead and 38 wounded. See more at www.army.mil (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The parallels between the massacre of 13 soldiers by Major Malik Hasan at Fort Hood in 2009 and 3 soldiers there by Spec. Ivan Lopez on Thursday afternoon are disturbingly similar. Despite promises from the president on down that nothing like this would happen again, it happened again.

At about 4:30PM, Specialist 4th Class Ivan Lopez entered a building on the Fort Hood campus where he apparently

Keep Reading…

Preliminary Polls Show Chances Improving for Repubicans to take back the Senate in November

Alan Abramowitz introducing former foster yout...

Alan Abramowitz (Photo credit: flguardian2)

Despite the elections being seven months away – a virtual lifetime in politics – pollsters are coming out of the woodwork to offer their statistical opinions on the outcome in November.  Most of them agree that control of the Senate, now firmly in Democrat hands, is

Keep Reading…

God v. god: the Sad State of a Double-Minded Nation

The iconic image of the Hand of God giving lif...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This article was first published at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, March 24, 2014:

What’s at issue today at the Supreme Court is the battle between the state as god and God Himself. All the rest is details.

Under ObamaCare, the abortifacient mandate – what some are calling the anti-conscience mandate – requires employers to pay for coverage of contraception, sterilization, and abortion-inducing drugs in the health insurance offered to their employees. Some are seeing this for what it is:

Keep Reading…

Supreme Court to hear First Amendment case in Hobby Lobby Lawsuit

English: Hobby Lobby store in Stow, Ohio

Hobby Lobby store in Stow, Ohio (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Tuesday the Supreme Court will begin hearing arguments in Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby that are likely to have significant ramifications for freedom of religion under the First Amendment. David and Barbara Green, the owners of Hobby Lobby, a nation-wide chain of more than 500 arts and crafts stores employing more than 13,000 people, run their business according to their Christian faith. Accordingly, among other things,

Keep Reading…

Pete Seeger, the Grand Old Man of American Folk Music, Was a Hard-Left Radical

This article first appeared at The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, January 29, 2014: 

There was a time, not all that long ago, when the activities of people like Pete Seeger were considered traitorous. Now they are celebrated. How far down the culture has descended into the world dreamed of and sung about by the likes of people like Seeger.

Seeger met his Maker late Monday night, at the age of 94, and the controlled media rolled out its big guns for the celebration of his life. To its discredit, the Washington Post

Keep Reading…

US oil output is up 25 percent from just one year ago

If the increase in US oil output continues to increase by 25% every year, as it did from September 2012 to September 2013, total US output would double every three years. It’s a simple case of mathematics, compound interest, and the Rule of 72.

The main thing working to keep that from happening is

Keep Reading…

President Obama Losing Support from His Own

As President Obama’s poll numbers continue to drop, even his most ardent supporters are getting weary, according to the New York Times. Unhappiness over the president’s position on issues like the National Security Agency’s surveillance policies, the “red line” controversy over Syria with its threatened military intervention and the

Keep Reading…

First Recall in Colorado History Ousts Two Anti-Gun Senators

With the concessions of defeat by former state senate president Democrat John Morse and Democrat senator Angela Giron came cries of jubilation and disappointment in the first recall election in Colorado’s history. In the recall election first allowed by Colorado in 1912, more than $3 million was invested in the elections, most of it from

Keep Reading…

CNBC says Larry Summers to replace Ben Bernanke at the Fed

Citing an unnamed source from “Team Obama”, CNBC announced that Larry Summers will be named head of the Federal Reserve by President Obama to replace outgoing chairman Ben Bernanke whose term expires on December 31st.

Despite much media conversation about other potential candidates for the position, chief among them Fed Vice Chairman Janet Yellen, Summers always had the inside track. Summers served as

Keep Reading…

Turning the Clinton Foundation into Hillary’s Presidential Launching Pad

When consulting firm Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, better known simply as Simpson Thacher, completed its corporate review of the Clinton Foundation earlier this month, their conclusions were picked up by the New York Times. Authors Nicholas Confessore and Amy Chozick gently chided the Clintons for running a money machine allegedly designed to “strengthen the capacity of people throughout the world to meet the challenges of global interdependence” but which suffers instead from

Keep Reading…

Home Ownership Rates Continue to Fall; New Plans to Reflate Underway

When the Census Bureau announced on Tuesday that the rate of homeownership in the US continued its nearly 9-year decline, pundits were quick to lay the blame on higher lending requirements, bankers reluctant to make loans, increasing interest rates and a weak economy with slow job growth. In addition, young people are living at home longer due to student loan debt and poor job prospects. As a result, according to the Census Bureau, rental rates are climbing as families needing a place to live have few other options.

Having fallen from the peak of 69 percent reached in 2004, current home ownership has dropped to 65 percent, back to where it was in 1995. Robert Schiller, economics professor at Yale, thinks the rate will continue to fall further.

Home prices are increasing not because of demand by new buyers but because of investors seeing the opportunities in buying distressed properties and turning them into rentals. In some places in the country one out of every two home purchases are paid for in cash.

But something else is afoot: fewer citizens are buying into the notion that home ownership makes economic sense and is equivalent to a savings plan that can be turned into income in later years. As Emily Badger noted at The Atlantic Cities, “We have traditionally considered homeownership to be a sign of the health of the economy. But some of these people who would have been homeowners 10 years ago … have concluded that they would rather rent [today]…”

Some have no doubt been so badly mauled financially in the recession that they have few options. Others have long memories and remember the pain and suffering they endured as a result of deliberate government policies instituted to make homeownership possible to millions of unqualified buyers.

One of those with long memories is Henry Cisneros, a key player in developing the “National Homeownership Strategy” while he was Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) under Bill Clinton. Unanimously confirmed by the Senate, Cisneros took over at HUD in January, 1993 and by 1997 had boosted the US homeownership rate from 63.7 percent to 65.7 percent. Even after leaving office, his strategies continued blowing up the real estate bubble so that by the time Clinton left office in 2001 home ownership was at 67.5 percent on its way to peaking during the summer and fall of 2004.

In a remarkably candid and forthright article about Cisneros’ role in creating the real estate bubble, The New York Times told the story of a compassionate government bureaucrat with big dreams of providing home ownership to people who couldn’t afford them under current rules. So he changed the rules and invited bankers, realtors and homebuilders to participate in the party guaranteed by taxpayers. In 2008 as he contemplated the damage he had wrought while head of HUD, Cisneros claimed that his intentions were honorable, at least in the beginning, but that his plans to provide low-interest loans and much weaker underwriting requirements through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were hijacked by “unscrupulous participants – bankers, brokers, secondary market people. The country is paying for that, and families are hurt because we … did not draw line.” He expressed regret that his efforts had not only lured people into homes they couldn’t afford, but that his policies ultimately ejected them from those homes as a result. He said, “I’ve been waiting for someone to put all the blame on my doorstep.”

His strategy was to lower underwriting standards by allowing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to require less documentation and approve higher debt to income levels than normal. He reduced down payment requirements from 20 percent to 10 percent, and then to 5 percent, then down to 3 percent and ultimately to 0 percent. His strategy allowed these unqualified buyers to cover their closing costs with another loan, putting them into a home with truly nothing out of the own pockets. Lenders were happy with the new rules as the US taxpayer stood behind the loans bought by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Cisneros created a monster.

Once the ball got rolling, it was impossible to stop or even slow down. Said Cisneros:

You think you have a finely tuned instrument that you can use to say: Stop! We’re at 69 percent homeownership. We should go no further. There are people who should remain renters.

But you really are given a sledgehammer and an ax. They are blunt tools.

I’m not sure you can regulate when we’re talking about an entire nation of 300 million people and this behavior becomes viral.

Cisneros drank his own Kool-Aid. He joined with a major homebuilder to develop a housing project in San Antonio, Texas which made him wealthy but which turned sour during the collapse.

Those lessons are about to be learned again as there are new efforts to reflate the ownership bubble. Under the Dodd-Frank Act there’s something called the Qualified Mortgage Rule (QMR) which requires lenders to keep part of the loans they make in their own portfolios – they must have “skin in the game” to reduce the chances of another bubble. But more than 50 organizations tied to the real estate industry are advocating a softening of that rule, putting more government money into the market, with less risk to the lenders. One of those supporting such softening is Sarah Rosen Wartell, president of the Urban Institute, who sounds an awful lot like Cisneros:

I’m not suggesting indiscriminate access to home ownership, but there are many borrowers who are capable of demonstrating the capacity to pay…

[They include] those who had a job loss or foreclosure, in many cases through no fault of their own [and a result are] being shut out of a rising market.

Gary Thomas, the president of the National Association of Homebuilders, expressed his delight at the softening of the rules:

If what we’re heard about the [weakening of] the proposed QMR rule is true, the we are very pleased that the agencies are moving towards a broad definition that will benefit the American people by ensuring access to safe, affordable options for buying a home.

And then of course there’s the inevitable college professor who hasn’t learned from history, or from Cisneros. Christopher Mayer, professor of real estate at Columbia Business School, exulted:

Having a path that people can become a homeowner is an important path. And it’s really important for middle to lower-income folks who have a hard time saving…

At present efforts to reflate the real estate bubble through relaxing underwriting requirements and low-interest loans don’t appear to be working very well. But Washington has a mission where past experience and lessons and pain and hardship don’t matter. The Cisneros mentality remains alive and well in Foggy Bottom.

 

 

 

County Sheriff in California Strips Forest Service Agents of Law Enforcement Powers

The CBS affiliate in El Dorado County, California, expressed surprise when it reported that County Sheriff John D’Agostini stripped agents of the U.S. Forest Service of their law enforcement powers in his county.  Wrote D’Agnostini:

I take the [standard of] service that we provide to the citizens of El Dorado County and the visitors to El Dorado County [which includes Lake Tahoe] very seriously, and the style and manner of service we provide.

The U.S. Forest Service, after many attempts and given many opportunities, has failed to meet that standard.

The writer covering the story, Laura Cole, asked a law professor, John Myers, if D’Agostini could actually get away with this. Said Myers: “It looks to me as though the sheriff can do this.”

This isn’t the first time D’Agostini has written such a letter.

Keep Reading…

Marc Rich, the oil trader Clinton pardoned on his last day, is dead at 78

In announcing the death of 78-year-old international oil trader, Marc Rich, commentators around the world nearly ran out of descriptors, calling him “friend”, “pioneer,” “colorful”, “great”, “controversial”, a “buccaneer”, the “King of Oil”, and the “King of Commodities.” Others weren’t so kind, calling him a

Keep Reading…

The 61st Meeting of the Bilderberg Group: Good Old Boys Getting Together Again

This article first appeared in the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor newsletter:

 

The note from Matthew Holehouse at the British tabloid The Telegraph makes last week’s four-day meeting of the Bilderberg Group at the Grove Hotel in Watford, Hertfordshire, England sound benign. He called it a “gathering of royalty, statesmen and business leaders … [to] discuss how the US and Europe can promote growth, the way ‘big data’ is changing ‘almost everything’, the challenges facing the continent of Africa, and the threat of cyberwarfare….”

It’s just another meeting similar to the World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland, and there’s nothing to worry about, suggests Holehouse. Except that “meetings take place behind closed doors, with a ban on journalists.”

What would cause major luminaries to take four days out of their busy schedules to spend time at a golf resort if it was just a friendly get-together over tea? Here are some of those luminaries:

  • Jose Barroso, the President of the European Union
  • Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon
  • Robert Dudley, CEO of British Petroleum
  • Peter Sutherland, Chairman of Goldman Sachs along with his Vice Chairman, J. Michael Evans
  • Timothy Geithner, former Secretary of the Treasury
  • Donald Graham, Chairman and CEO of The Washington Post
  • Stuart Gulliver, CEO of HSBC
  • Simon Henry, CFO of Royal Dutch Shell along with the company’s CEO, Peter Voser
  • Kenneth Jacobs, Chairman and CEO of Lazard Frères’ along with his managing director, Vernon Jordon
  • Henry Kissinger, Chairman, Kissinger Associates
  • Henry Kravis, CEO of Kohlberg, Kravis Roberts
  • Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund
  • Robert Rubin, former Secretary of the Treasury and current co-chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations
  • Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Google

Let’s face it: these are heavyweights. So why, again, would they take four days out of their lives to attend? Is this something more than just getting reacquainted with old friends?

Daniel Estulin thinks so, as he has for years. In his book, The True Story of the Bilderberg Group, which he says is based on 15 years’ worth of investigation, Estulin says that this group, along with the CFR and the Trilateral Commission, represents a “shadow government” whose top priority is to erase the sovereignty of all nation-states as a precursor to establishing a global government.

Several members of these groups have admitted as much. For example, in 2001, Denis Healey, a founder of the Bilderberg Group, said:

To say we were striving for a one-world government is exaggerated but not wholly unfair. Those of us in Bilderberg felt we couldn’t go on fighting one another and killing people and rendering millions homeless.

So we felt that a single community throughout the world would be a good thing.

There are coincidences that can’t readily be explained away as mere accidents: George H. W. Bush attended a Bilderberg conference in 1985, and became president in 1988. Bill Clinton attended one in 1991, and became president a year later. Tony Blair attended one in 1993 and became England’s prime minister in 1997. Romano Prodi attended in 1999 and within months became president of the European Union. Senator John Edwards spoke to the group in 2004 and was later named by John Kerry to be his vice-presidential nominee.

To some, the long arm of coincidence just can’t reach that far.

Estulin was asked what exactly the Bilderberg Group is. He answered:

It’s a meeting of people who represent a certain ideology. Bilderberg Group is not a conspiracy theory. It’s a conspiracy reality…. It is a self-perpetuating system, a virtual spider web of interlocked financial, political, economic and industry interests. And that in and of itself is a pretty significant factor, because … it is a vehicle through which private financier oligarchical interests are able to impose their policies on what are nominally sovereign governments.

There’s Henry Kissinger, exposed as a Soviet Agent when Soviet Colonel Michael Goleniewski defected, bringing with him the names of 240 soviet spies, one of whom was Kissinger.

And there’s David Rockefeller who wrote in his Memoirs:

Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as “internationalists” and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure – one world, if you will.

If that’s the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it.

Even Georgetown University professor Carroll Quigley (to whom Bill Clinton conveniently referred in his acceptance speech at the 1992 Democratic National Convention), author of The Anglo-American Establishment and Tragedy and Hope, effectively agreed that there is more going on in Watford this weekend:

This radical Right fairy tale … as a well-organized plot by extreme Left-wing elements … does in fact have a modicum of truth. There does exist, and has existed for a generation, an international Anglophile network which operates, to some extent, in the way the Radical right believes the Communists act. In fact, this network, which we may identify as the Round Table Groups, has no aversion to cooperating with the Communists, or any other group, and frequently does so.

I known of the operation of this network because I have studied it for twenty years and was permitted for two years, in the early 1960s, to examine its papers and secret records. I have no aversion to it or to most of its aims and have, for much of my life, been close to it and to many of its instruments. I have objected, both in the past and recently, to a few of its policies … but in general my chief difference of opinion is that it wishes to remain unknown, and I believe its role in history is significant enough to be known.

The question remains: what would these worthies be doing in Watford that requires that they take four days out of their lives if something awfully important weren’t going on? Just asking.

—————————–

Sources:

Bilderberg is ‘a conspiracy reality’

The True Story of the Bilderberg Group

Daniel Estulin

Osborne, Clarke and Balls to attend Bilderberg Group meeting

The Bilderberg Group

Henry Kissinger

Henry Kissinger Soviet Agent

Bilderberg website

Bilderberg meeting agenda

Tragedy and Hope: A History of the World in Our Time

The Anglo-American Establishment

National Taxpayers Union Finds Major Spending Shift in 112th Congress

The report from the National Taxpayers Union’s foundation, the NTUF, published on Tuesday, illustrates a massive shift in spending versus cutting that occurred during the 112th Congress from 2010 to 2012. If the trend continues in the current Congress and on into 2014 and beyond, the 112th Congress might just be the

Keep Reading…

Is there more to Google-Berg than Alex Jones is telling us?

Alex Jones, author of Infowars.com and a self-admitted conspiratorialist, has offered his take on the two back-to-back summits taking place the second week of June in Watford, UK. The first is known colloquially as

Keep Reading…

Asa Hutchinson runs the NRA’s National School Shield Program

I’m intrigued by the people put into places of influence, wondering who they are and how they got there. More importantly, what  their background might portend for the program they’re heading up. Hutchinson, the man Wayne LaPierre, head of the NRA, tapped to lead its National School Shield Program, has an interesting background.

Keep Reading…

My critique of Mitchell’s critique of Ryan’s budget plan

It isn’t often that I conclude that Dan Mitchell misses the mark, but this time I do. He has a rule: “The private sector should grow faster than the government.” I like my rule better:

Keep Reading…

Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.