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Tom Galyen
07-28-2009, 05:37 AM
From the Associated Press, 28 July 2009

"WASHINGTON (AP) -- Two influential Senate committee chairmen were told they were getting special VIP deals when they applied for mortgages, an official who handled their loans told Congress in closed-door testimony. Democratic Sens. Christopher Dodd and Kent Conrad had denied knowing they were getting discounts when they negotiated their loan terms.

Robert Feinberg, who worked in the VIP section of Countrywide Financial Corp., testified about the loan terms before the Senate Ethics Committee, and provided the same information in an interview with Republican investigators of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. He could be prosecuted for making false statements.

Both senators have said that at the time the mortgages were being written they didn't know they were getting unique deals from Countrywide, a company that lost billions of dollars on bad loans and since has been purchased by Bank of America."

I didn't know, standard answer.

skuthorp
07-28-2009, 06:56 AM
Shades of the british scandals, but at least they were repayable loans. I imagine this is a common occurance no matter what the shade of government involved. Soft corruption, institutiions currying favour, toadying to percieved power, our representatives being flattered by it, then expecting it, then demanding it.
Doesn't make it right, it's still a potential bribe, a potential pressure point that could be applied. But that's the nature of the beast, man. It's the office pens and discs that you take home, the cops free hamburger, the councillors free campaign printing and so it goes. In some cultures it's a way of life, business runs on bribes, govt departments are 'expected' to raise part of their budget. In Indonesia the army was part financed by it's own corruption and still is in Irianjya.

SMARTINSEN
07-28-2009, 07:05 AM
Dodd, the very symbol of the hereditary and entrenched power structure that is ruining this country must go.

Term limits says I.

Ian McColgin
07-28-2009, 07:09 AM
It was for his father, but Mad Magazine lo these many years ago had a great movie ad. Picture Adam Clayton Powell in the open fighter cockpit, scarf streaming out, and the movie title was "Dodd is my Co-Pirate."

Been waiting years for someone on this Forum to be old enough to share the memory.

SMARTINSEN
07-28-2009, 07:34 AM
Been waiting years for someone on this Forum to be old enough to share the memory.

Thanks for making me feel old, Ian. I do not know of the cartoon, but I certainly remember that Dodd pere was censured by the Senate on ethics charges for--guess what--using campaign funds for personal use. He should have been booted out. Though he lost his re-election bid to Lowell Weiker.

The apple does not fall very far from the tree, evidently, though to be fair, I do not believe that Chris has violated any law. He was just taking advantage of his position at the expense of those less fortunate.

Time for him to go.

SMARTINSEN
07-28-2009, 07:36 AM
Soft corruption. That is a good way to put it.

John Smith
07-28-2009, 07:43 AM
Dodd, the very symbol of the hereditary and entrenched power structure that is ruining this country must go.

Term limits says I.
It's not just this type of thing. Celebrities get special treatment.

A major part of this problem is that these people get further and further removed from the life that "normal" people live. So how can they represent us?

If you go to finance a new car, the more financially secure you are, the lower the interest rate you get.

To change any of this would be to change human nature.

ljb5
07-28-2009, 08:40 AM
From the Associated Press, 28 July 2009

"WASHINGTON (AP) -- Two influential Senate committee chairmen were told they were getting special VIP deals when they applied for mortgages...

When I got my last mortgage, they told me I was getting a VIP deal.

My credit card keeps telling me I'm eligible for "Diamond" status, whatever that is.

I get a dozen offers a week for "premium" or upgraded service at hotels and airlines and restaurant clubs.

None of this impresses me and it shouldn't impress you either.

It's called "marketing."

John Smith
07-28-2009, 09:03 AM
When I got my last mortgage, they told me I was getting a VIP deal.

My credit card keeps telling me I'm eligible for "Diamond" status, whatever that is.

I get a dozen offers a week for "premium" or upgraded service at hotels and airlines and restaurant clubs.

None of this impresses me and it shouldn't impress you either.

It's called "marketing."
Point well taken. Usually they turn out to be none of those things.

skuthorp
07-28-2009, 09:13 AM
Anyone familiar with the term "insider trading"? that's what effectively it is.

High C
07-28-2009, 09:33 AM
Anyone familiar with the term "insider trading"? that's what effectively it is.

The term "bribery" also comes to mind.

Ian McColgin
07-28-2009, 09:33 AM
It's not insider trading unless you take a legally defined unfair advantage of something you know by virtue of certain legal standards about how you came to know.

People get deals for all sorts of reasons, all of which have some sort of advantage to the seller, as well as the buyer.

Sometimes the certainty of payment is worth a nudge less interest.

Often, think store coupons, getting you to purchase more justifies a slightly lower per item profit.

Sometimes getting the first few customers will encourage the market and the seller can profit more from later customers just following the leader.

Often there's a sense of local 'you buy from me and I buy from you' community spirit.

Certain deals, whether insider trading or remodeling a governor's home, get defined by law as wrong. Properly, this should be because they are deals that either subvert fair competition in the market or that foster public corruption. Often the two are interrelated, as economics students (who are not market fundies) have known ever since corn futures rackets during the Punic Wars.

I don't know yet if these two D's broke laws. If they did, they should be penalized. If their defenses establish that there were no law violations, then the issue remains with their constituents.

SMARTINSEN
07-28-2009, 10:02 AM
I have not seen where Dodd has released his original documents. So we really do not know, but it sure gives the appearance that he has something to hide.

He got no points, and free float-down. Sure seems like VIP treatment to me.

I think that he is lying, but what else is new.

It is the influence pedaling that is troublesome.

ucb4ume
07-28-2009, 10:05 AM
I just have to wonder what would happen if the letter "R" were behind the name "Dodd".

Would the press treat the issue differently?

ljb5
07-28-2009, 10:20 AM
I just have to wonder what would happen if the letter "R" were behind the name "Dodd".

Would the press treat the issue differently?

I suspect that more than one Republican got the same deal or a similar deal.

Someone has a list and released only some names.

ucb4ume
07-28-2009, 12:39 PM
I suspect that more than one Republican got the same deal or a similar deal.

Someone has a list and released only some names.


There's a list????

Do you have a link that talks about the list? I would love to learn more about it.

ljb5
07-28-2009, 12:45 PM
There's a list????

Do you have a link that talks about the list? I would love to learn more about it.

Are you familiar with the C-Street House?

BrianW
07-28-2009, 12:47 PM
The democrats who admit this was wrong show integrity. Those who try to excuse it away show their true colors.

ucb4ume
07-28-2009, 12:53 PM
Are you familiar with the C-Street House?

I am vaguely familiar with the C-Street House, but I'm not sure how that relates to a list of politicians who got VIP mortgages from CountryWide.

Again, can you point me to a credible source for the list?

ljb5
07-28-2009, 01:00 PM
I am vaguely familiar with the C-Street House, but I'm not sure how that relates to a list of politicians who got VIP mortgages from CountryWide.

It's a group of politicians getting a sweet-heart deal from an organization which represents itself as a church (for tax reasons), but operates as a PAC. Most significantly, it is a housing arrangement that is not available to anyone other than select politicians. If that's not suspicious, nothing is.

I have yet to see any evidence to suggest that Dodd's mortgage is anything different than what anyone else with good credit and a steady job would be offered.

As I mentioned before, I've been offered "VIP" deals too... and I'm certainly no VIP.

This reminds me of the allegations against Sen. Reid that he [gasp] owned property in Nevada and [shocking!] sold it for a profit! Like millions of others, he was a real-estate investor. Is that a crime? Nope? Stop acting like it is.

ucb4ume
07-28-2009, 01:20 PM
It's a group of politicians getting a sweet-heart deal from an organization which represents itself as a church (for tax reasons), but operates as a PAC. Most significantly, it is a housing arrangement that is not available to anyone other than select politicians. If that's not suspicious, nothing is.

I have yet to see any evidence to suggest that Dodd's mortgage is anything different than what anyone else with good credit and a steady job would be offered.

As I mentioned before, I've been offered "VIP" deals too... and I'm certainly no VIP.

This reminds me of the allegations against Sen. Reid that he [gasp] owned property in Nevada and [shocking!] sold it for a profit! Like millions of others, he was a real-estate investor. Is that a crime? Nope? Stop acting like it is.

So, in post #15 above, where you said:

"Someone has a list and released only some names"

Did you actually know of a list that has the names of additional politicians who took VIP loans from Country Wide?

I don't doubt that there are other crooked politicians in Washington DC, both Republican and Democrat.

All I'm asking for is a link to a credible source who claims there is a larger list.

ljb5
07-28-2009, 03:23 PM
So, in post #15 above, where you said:

"Someone has a list and released only some names"

Did you actually know of a list that has the names of additional politicians who took VIP loans from Country Wide?

I never implied that I know of any specific list.

However, there is obviously some sort of list.

We know this because at least two names have been released (Dodd and Conrad).

Tom Galyen
07-28-2009, 04:01 PM
In post #14, ucb4ume, asks what would happen if Dodd had an "R" after his name. I think the press would have been on him much earlier and been demanding his head, as would every Democratic politician in Washington. But since he is a Democrat this will be swept under the very lumpy Democratic rug and forgotten about.

BrianW
07-28-2009, 04:05 PM
I never implied that I know of any specific list.

However, there is obviously some sort of list.

We know this because at least two names have been released (Dodd and Conrad).

Hell that's good enough for me!

There's a list.

Somewhere.

Nobody knows who's on it.

Democrats were involved, it's all cool.

Damn, this competence thing is easy from this angle.

:D

High C
07-28-2009, 04:11 PM
Hell that's good enough for me!

There's a list.

Somewhere.

Nobody knows who's on it.

Democrats were involved, it's all cool.

Damn, this competence thing is easy from this angle.

:D

Well, it wasn't a specific list, just a list, probably a nonspecific list.

ljb5
07-28-2009, 05:11 PM
Hell that's good enough for me!

There's a list.

Somewhere.

Nobody knows who's on it.

Democrats were involved, it's all cool.

Damn, this competence thing is easy from this angle.

:D

Well, if there's no list, where do you think the information about Dodd and Conrad came from???

I bet Countrywide keeps a list. People tend to keep track of who they have lent money to. I bet they can even sort it by "VIP" status. I bet there are more than 2 people with that status.


Obviously, someone had the info about Dodd and Conrad (or else you wouldn't have heard about it.) So why are you arguing about whether or not the information exists?

Paul Pless
07-28-2009, 05:16 PM
In post #14, ucb4ume, asks what would happen if Dodd had an "R" after his name. I think the press would have been on him much earlier and been demanding his head, as would every Democratic politician in Washington. But since he is a Democrat this will be swept under the very lumpy Democratic rug and forgotten about.Well that. . . and also Norman would have been the initiator of this thread instead of yourself.;)