Corruption Is Good, In the Right Hands?

by JOHN ARMOR July 27, 2010
I listened to every word of President Obama’s statement on signing the financial institutions’ “reform” law, Wednesday morning.  It was a filthy job, but somebody had to do it.  The longest applause during the entire charade was when Obama thanked Rep. Barney Frank and Sen. Thomas Dodd for their “tireless work” in getting this bill passed.
Now, class, let’s conduct a brief review.  First, not every Act that contains the word “reform” actually reforms or improves anything.  Remember, as your grandma used to say, “Just because the cat has kittens in the oven, doesn’t make them biscuits.”
Second, this “reform” law doesn’t lay a finger on the two federal lending corporations, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which were at the heart of the phony financial instruments which nearly crippled the national economy.  Why would they, of all institutions, be left out?
Back up a bit.  Senator Dodd, both then and now, is Chairman of the Senate Committee that handles finance legislation.  As such, he helped write and pass the original laws which required lending institutions to make increasing numbers of rotten loans to increasingly dubious homeowners, in the interests of “fairness.”
But Senator Dodd was in bed with the very interests who sought to profit from these unworthy transactions.  In fact, one of the major private malefactors in the collapse was Countrywide Mortgages.
They had a special department to make special, low interest loans to “friends of the CEO.”  Dodd was one of those friends.  He never released documents on his sweetheart loans.  But the stench of being bought and paid for was too high from his office.  Sen. Dodd has declined to run again for the office he has owned for decades, Senator from Connecticut.
And, it turns out that Dodd was far from alone in being bought off with loans.  Here is the key paragraph from that article this week in Human Events:  “New documents released by [Congressman] Issa show 173 sweetheart deal loans from Countrywide Financial Corporation were given to 42 Fannie and Freddie employees as the company was negotiating exclusive agreement to sell Fannie Mae billions of dollars in questionable, sub-prime mortgages at a discounted rate.”
What about Rep.  Barney Frank, the other half of the corrupt duo which received the standing ovation Wednesday morning?  He was then and is now Chairman of the House Committee that deals with finance bills.  He was literally in bed with the people at Fannie Mae.  Herbert Moses, who was in charge of new products at Fannie Mae including the toxic derivatives, was at one time sex a partner of Rep. Franks.  According to Franks, they “remain friends.”
Perhaps that was why Franks repeatedly assured the American people that “there are no problems at Fannie Mae,” just before Fannie Mae collapsed like a house of cards in a hurricane.  Rep. Franks’ position in Congress is, unfortunately, safe for as long as he draws breath, regardless of how dishonest those breaths may be.
The process was a triangle trade.  Countrywide, which collapsed and stuck the taxpayers with hundreds of million dollars in losses, paid bribes to federal officials in the form of cheap mortgages.  The officials in turn paid bribes to Dodd and Franks in the form of “contributions.”  The payoff is that the “financial reform” Act keeps its hands off Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
And the President and his party thank Dodd and Franks for their “fine work in passing this reform.”  Is anyone surprised?
The main lesson that all of this teaches to any rational American should be this: The Obama Administration has no opposition whatsoever to corruption in public office. In fact, it endorses and applauds such corruption for preferred interest groups.  (All this is without mentioning Rep. Charlie Rangel, who should already be in the Big House for tax evasion, rather than the House.)
FamilySecurityMatters.orgContributing Editor John Armor practiced law in the Supreme Court for 33 years. His latest book about Thomas Paine is available at He is counsel to the American Civil Rights Union. Contact him at

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