Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is questioning why up to $400 million in federal bailout money is going to the big three credit rating agencies that he says helped create the economic meltdown.
Blumenthal said Monday that he is investigating why a $1 trillion government bailout program designed to unfreeze the credit markets steers money to Moody's, Fitch and Standard & Poor's and shuts out their six smaller competitors.
He said the companies may have violated antitrust laws, and he alleged they overrated toxic assets before the meltdown.
”The net result here is that up to $400 million in fees will be showered on the same ratings agencies whose mistaken ratings and inflated ratings led to the economic crisis,” Blumenthal said. “It is another reward for failure.” Read more about Blumenthal Questions Credit Rating Companies
So the President visited Iraq today, un-announced beforehand. The troops appear to have been glad to see him.
Now if he will bring them home, I will join them in being glad that this President is so very different from his predecessor. Read more about What a difference a presidency makes
Citigroup Inc.'s new board chairman, Richard Parsons, said financial institutions are being targeted for creating the nation's financial crisis, but they aren't the only ones responsible.
"Everybody participated in pumping up this balloon. Now the balloon has deflated," he said Monday. "Everybody, in reality, has some part of the blame. But it's much more in the culture to find a villain and vilify the villain."
A small but growing number of cash-strapped communities are printing their own money.
Borrowing from a Depression-era idea, they are aiming to help consumers make ends meet and support struggling local businesses.
The systems generally work like this: Businesses and individuals form a network to print currency. Shoppers buy it at a discount — say, 95 cents for $1 value — and spend the full value at stores that accept the currency.
Workers with dwindling wages are paying for groceries, yoga classes and fuel with Detroit Cheers, Ithaca Hours in New York, Plenty in North Carolina or BerkShares in Massachusetts.
That, and tell us what you did with what you already stole. Full public acts of contrition also gratefully accepted!
NOTE Via (Yves (this [terr|horr]iffic compendium of quotes on The Big Shitstorm)). Read more about Grayson: "Stop stealing our money!"
A little late, but better late than never. Read more about In re Bill Black vs. the OFB: The sane people take over to prevent further damage to the Kos brand
Hint: it has nothing to do with extraordinary rendition and you can find out here:
"That is because the captive insurance scam was systemic. “This was not an isolated case … AIG did that a lot,” a former insurance regulator said, speaking under condition of anonymity. “AIG helped companies set up offshore captive reinsurance companies. AIG would then overcharge on insurance and pay reinsurance premiums to the captives, giving the captive owners tax-free offshore income.”"
The Shrill One provides more horrifying charts, and remarks:
Knowledge is the only thing standing between us and Great Depression 2.0. It’s only to the extent that we understand these things a bit better than our grandfathers — and that we act on that knowledge — that we have any real reason to think this time will be better.
With one caveat: Read more about What Krugman said
GM's electric-powered Puma. Could be pretty cool, and although one does sense the executives reaching deep into the labs for anything tagged "innovative," that might not be such a bad thing:
Puma stands for personal urban mobility and accessibility.
The prototype, which will be debuted in New York, is aimed at urban driving. GM aims to start making them by 2012.
The vehicle, named Puma, can go as far as 35 miles on a single charge. It will use lithium-ion batteries.
Laura Hecox was baffled when an officer from the San Diego County sheriff’s department came to her home in February and said she was being evicted. She hadn’t missed a rent payment on her four-bedroom house since moving there a year-and-a-half earlier.
“They told me to leave, to get a few things together,” said Hecox, 37, who lives with and supports her four kids and mother. “I got booted out just like that.”