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How much did Barney’s relationship cost taxpayers?

Although, we can’t confirm the accuracy of the allegations against Herman Cain, we do know one thing:  the Republican’s alleged dalliances didn’t cost taxpayers a dime.  And yet day in and day out, our news media promote the story as if our government weren’t in debt, the Democrat Senate had passed annual budgets in the last 925 days, the economy were booming and the world beyond our shores was calm.

CNN has become the Cain “News” Network with “breaking news” at the top of every hour (at least when I’ve been watching) on the latest woman to claim he made untoward advances toward her.  All this coverage has buried stories with real relevance to our system of government and our national economy.  Reuters reported last night that a government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) with which one Democratic Congressman wanted to “roll the dice” is asking for more money from the federal government:

Fannie Mae, the biggest source of money for U.S. home loans, on Tuesday said it needed a further $7.8 billion in federal aid to stay afloat as a shaky housing market widened its third-quarter loss to $5.1 billion.

The government-controlled firm also attributed the deeper cash drain to losses on derivatives used to hedge its exposure to interest-rate swings and on expenses related to home loans made prior to the 2008 financial collapse. In the year-earlier quarter it had a loss of a $1.3 billion.

Fannie Mae has now drawn $112.6 billion in bailout funds from the Treasury Department since being seized by the government in 2008 as mortgage losses mounted, and it has returned $17.2 billion to taxpayers in the form of dividends.

Now, just a few months ago, we learned that said Congressman, a Mr. B. Frank, helped his boyfriend “land a job at [the] mortgage giant . . . in the early 1990s at the same time Congress was writing legislation to improve oversight of the lender“.  This wasn’t the first time Barney used his position to help a boyfriend.

We don’t know if Barney’s relationship caused — or even contributed to — the mortgage meltdown.  What we do know is that the story generated a little buzz for a few days and then died.  Barney bent over backwards to defend Fannie Mae, an institution at the heart of the financial crisis, a government-backed enterprise which continues to beg for cash from the federal treasury.

Only a handful of reporters covered story about Barney getting his boyfriend a job at this GSE he defended, a very real conflict of interest.  There was just one line at Politico.  I could find nothing on CNN’s web-page.*

So, the question is, why are our friends in the mainstream media devoting so much time to the Cain kerfuffle when they devoted so little to Barney Frank’s clear conflict of interest?  And Barney defended an institution which cost taxpayers (and their descendants) over $100 billion.

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*Using google, I did advanced searches for “gretchen morgenson barney frank” (without quotation marks) at each site.  I found a lot of stuff on Politico’s fora, but only one the one line linked.  If you find other references, please let me know and I will update the post accordingly.  I chose this search because some articles used “companion” to designate Barney’s significant other.  Morgenson broke the story in her book, Reckless Endangerment: How Outsized Ambition, Greed, and Corruption Led to Economic Armageddon.

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7 Comments

  1. What makes me angry are all the BONUSES given to the execs! Millions paid after the most recent bailout and NOW they need another bailout of Billions! Barney Frank is corrupt and always has been. Until his voters finally see the light, we are stuck with him. But we shouldn’t be stuck with allowing a failing GSE to award bonuses.

    Comment by Texas Mom 2012 — November 9, 2011 @ 9:33 am - November 9, 2011

  2. I’m thinking Barney was bent over frontwards…

    Comment by runningrn — November 9, 2011 @ 9:51 am - November 9, 2011

  3. Texas Mom, I’ll be discussing that presently and wondering if Barney ever complained about them. IF you want to know how disgusting the bonuses were, get and read Morgenson’s books linked in the post.

    Comment by B. Daniel Blatt — November 9, 2011 @ 11:43 am - November 9, 2011

  4. Barney Frank needs to be prison.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — November 9, 2011 @ 3:33 pm - November 9, 2011

  5. I used to work for a company that had lots of gummint contracts. Every year we had to review the ethics handbook, take a quiz, and sign a document stating that we’d read the policy and agreed to adhere to it.

    We weren’t supposed to give or receive any gratuities (I think an occasional soda from a vending machine was OK – but never was sure if even that was OK with gummint employees). We were reminded yearly that employees were terminated for the least little infraction. And then there was the nepotism policy and related parties transactions certifications…

    All that to do business with a government where officials, both elected and appointed, lavish each others and friends/lovers/families with lucrative contracts and sinecures.

    Didn’t Tom Daschle’s wife have a cushy job lobbying the same Congress Tom served in? Conflict of interest, just a bit?

    In the private sector, Barney would have been fired for that arrangement.

    Comment by SoCalRobert — November 9, 2011 @ 6:04 pm - November 9, 2011

  6. […] How much did Barney’s relationship cost taxpayers? […]

    Pingback by GayPatriot » No need for gays to keep covering for Barney Frank — November 9, 2011 @ 7:10 pm - November 9, 2011

  7. […] Although, we can’t confirm the accuracy of the allegations against Herman Cain, we do know one thing:  the Republican’s alleged dalliances didn’t cost taxpayers a dime. But how much did Barney Frank’s relationship cost taxpayers? […]

    Pingback by White House 2012′s Morning Memo. The News that Daylight Shed on Politics this Morning « White House 2012 — November 10, 2011 @ 9:05 am - November 10, 2011

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