26 Jul 2009

Abdel-Rahman, Randall Terry, and Incitement to Violence

Recently, Randall Terry made a statement breathtaking for its irresponsibility. He said that if the new health insurance reform bill included coverage for abortion that “others” might resort to violence.

22 Jul 2009

Pecora in Perspective: Investment Banking, Commercial Banking, and Glass-Steagall

The Pecora Commission report devotes a substantial amount of pages to discussion of the evils of allowing the commingling of commercial banking services, investment services and Commercial banking services all in one house.

20 Jul 2009

David Paterson’s Lt. Governor Appointment: Politically Astute, Even if Constitutionally Iffy

Ed Koch has an Op Ed in today’s NYTimes wherein he opines that through a series of gaps and ommissions in the NY State Constitution and in the NYS Public officers law, none of which confer upon the governor the right to appoint a Lt. Governor, that by stringing these gaps together, somehow that power materializes.

18 Jul 2009

On Growing Up Irish in New York

I grew up in one of those Irish Catholic families where the Clancy Brothers music was always playing and everybody dropped everything if the Chieftans came to town. There was the brief flirtation with step dancing (Riverdancing to the rest of you) and the dreadful sounds my sister Kathleen and I made during our brief and painful (for those within earshot) period of bagpipe lessons. I am so nostalgic today, because HuffPo is reporting that an icon of being Irish in NY may be leaving us.

17 Jul 2009

Walter Cronkite has Died

With his passing, a gold standard for integrity in journalism has been lost. So many of us grew up with his face in our living room.

So many of us learned of the big traumas in our nation’s history–Jack, Martin, Bobby, My Lai– from him, he delivered the bad news directly to us, in our own homes, it was an intimate act.

He was giant, an icon.

17 Jul 2009

McCain, Lieberman Schooled on Rule of Law by Kris, Johnson

Last week, Assistant Attorney General David Kris and Dept. of Defense General Counsel Jeh Johnson appeared before the Senate Armed Services Committee to talk about Military Commissions.

They stood up for the notion of returning to the rule of law and open, fair trials. I’m glad they did it, but sad that it even needed to be done.

15 Jul 2009

Pecora in Perspective: A New Commission is Born!

We needed four commisioners to get the work started, and we have 6 commissioners appointed today. Huzzah!

08 Jul 2009

Pecora in Perspective: Like the Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes

One of the great “evils” identified by the Pecora Commission was “short” selling. In many instances, when you open a brokerage account with a major firm, there is a clause in your client agreement which allows the firm to “borrow” stocks and other securities from your account. The firm then lends you stock to another customer who “sells” you stock to a third person.

06 Jul 2009

Executive Privilege and the Cheney Interview Documents

Jeralyn as an interesting piece up wherein she defends the WH’s decision to continue to invoke Executive Privilege to withhold the Cheney interview documents. I have to disagree.

01 Jul 2009

Pecora in Perspective: Examining the Current Commission, Still Without a Commissioner

Tucked into the Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act of 2009 [FERA], which was signed into law on May 20th, is a provision for a “Financial Markets Commission”. See, S. 386 at section 5. This is essentially a new Pecora Commission.