Forums > Personal > Eliot Spitzer - the whole story?

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The Real Wizard user not visiting Queenzone.com
The Real Wizard
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Posted: 19 Mar 08, 11:35 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

http://www.gregpalast.com/elliot-spitzer-gets-nailed

Discuss.



"The more generous you are with your music, the more it comes back to you." -- Dan Lampinski



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Music Man user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 19 Mar 08, 16:00 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

That's just useless speculation (and, not to mention, a huge stretch).

Spitzer simply committed a crime, and there really was no other choice or series of scenarios that would have led to him not having to step down. Personally, I couldn't care less what he did, but many New Yorkers do - he had to step down.

Additionally, the Federal Reserve is entirely independent from the federal government. It doesn't make shadiness impossible, but it does take a chunk of credence away from far-fetched conspiracy theories (especially those based entirely upon speculation in some dude's blog - especially some dude with an obvious bias). Also, if anyone is unaware of this, one of the main functions of the Fed is to loan money to banks. Someone inform Greg Palast, quick.

If anyone thinks the mortgage crisis is the result of "evil" banks making "predatory" loans...while it may be popular and acceptable (I mean, who can resist blaming "evil corporations who do bad things" - it's classic), it's false.

There's a time for conspiracy theories. However, when they can be shot down at a glance by those remotely familiar with the situation, that's how you know it's not the time. Another way to figure out which ones are false is to listen to TM.


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AspiringPhilosophe user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 19 Mar 08, 16:28 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Gotta go with MusicMan here. Since the days of the Great Depression, it has been the desire of the federal government to bail out banks that fail in order to keep the whole system from collapsing all around them. It's happened in the past, it's happening now, and it sure as heck will happen in the future.
Besides, the outrage over the Spitzer case for New Yorkers didn't have anything to do with Wall Street. It had much more to do with his tough stance on prostitution. He was the first politician and DA to actually go after the Johns who visited prostitutes, not just the prostitutes and the pimps themselves. He constantly made speeches about the moral failings of prostitution. And yet, he's caught up in it himself, not only once put on several occasions. It's a typical case of "If you scream loudly about something, you better be damn sure you aren't doing it yourself, because there will be a very loud thud when you fall."
Plus there is the fact that he's potential facing federal charges (should the Feds decide to prosecute) because he hired the prostitute and paid for her to come to Washington DC with him. She crossed state lines to participate in illegal activity, and therefore it is the jurisdiction of the Feds. If they decide to press charges against him, he'd have had to resign anyway because you can't have a person in that position keep his job when the federal government charges you with a federal crime.


Formerly MHG
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Posted: 19 Mar 08, 17:19 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I forgot to mention that the Fed is entirely self-funded. He's not loaning out tax dollars, as Greg Palast suggests.

We need journalists in this world, but more importantly, we need them to know what they're talking about (especially when they pretend to know what they are talking about; i.e. always) instead of trying to make a dollar (or fulfill their self-importance, as they are wont to do) by weaving conspiracy theories. Like I always say, as much as they harp on about it, there's really no such thing as journalistic integrity, is there?

Then again, what's the easiest way to make money in the United States?

1) Become a journalist.
2) Blame the big, bad corporations. Secondarily, there's the government, Republicans, Democrats, and/or lawyers - the more you can mix and match, the better.
3) Profit.


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The Real Wizard user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 19 Mar 08, 17:42 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Here's my two cents...

The US is in their financial troubles because of the war. Sure, it's the govt's job to bail out the banks when they're in trouble, but there rarely seems to be money for anything that isn't a part of the current Republican agenda... like helping a couple million homeowners who are about to get screwed.

Sure, Spitzer did wrong. But right when he wanted to publically speak about this, the Bush admin needed to shut him up by bringing the prostitution mess into it. I'm sure most of these politicians have files, and they are opened up if/when need be.



"The more generous you are with your music, the more it comes back to you." -- Dan Lampinski



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Music Man user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 19 Mar 08, 18:42 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I can't say you're wrong, but you really can't say you're right either. At least you speak in more open terms than Palast, who is just plain incorrect in most of his assumptions.

However, the financial crisis has very little to do with the a budget deficit. Even if the government had the money, it would not necessarily be prudent (or possible) for it to simply bail out citizens who made unwise mortgage decisions. Also, it is not the duty of the government or the Fed (which is only loosely affiliated with the government - I'll primarily focus on the Fed, since its actions are far more important than those of the federal government) to "bail out banks." In fact, the Fed must specifically not bail out banks, in order to avoid something called "moral hazard." However, the Fed's two most important tasks are to sustain economic growth (or to abate/avoid recessions) and to keep inflation under control (or maintain low levels of unemployment).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2007_subprime_mortgage_financial_crisis

This article sums up the debacle pretty well. I don't expect you to read through the entire thing, but I hope you all can check it out a little. As a lowly college student, I think it's all fairly difficult to put everything together - like a puzzle. As a finance major, I have a working familiarity with most of it (as well as the Federal Reserve System), though, and I'd be glad to discuss any of it with you guys.


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Yara user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 19 Mar 08, 19:09 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Sir GH<br><h6>ah yeah</h6> wrote:

Here's my two cents...

The US is in their financial troubles because of the war. Sure, it's the govt's job to bail out the banks when they're in trouble, but there rarely seems to be money for anything that isn't a part of the current Republican agenda... like helping a couple million homeowners who are about to get screwed.

Sure, Spitzer did wrong. But right when he wanted to publically speak about this, the Bush admin needed to shut him up by bringing the prostitution mess into it. I'm sure most of these politicians have files, and they are opened up if/when need be.


I don't think the current U.S financial troubles are linked to the war in Iraq though the war will take its toll on U.S finances in the long-run: just think about the health care costs for more than 30.000 injured soldiers as of now. These are not episodic, punctual costs, but steady spenditures that'll have to make their way into the Administration's budget for a good deal of time.

My 1 cent: I think the U.S economy has been working for too long based on financial bubbles which sonner or later turn out to crash and have a dreadful impact on the population. In the 90's there was the whole .com and communications bubble the explosion of which had dramatic effetcs over the U.S economy. I think we have been facing the same crisis since the Clinton years: financial markets have been operating on very risky investments in order to make a mint in a matter of months. J.P Morgan changed its whole financing policy to jump on the mortgage bandwagon and other highly risky, though very profitable, portfolios.

The show just can't go on and then the whole thing comes down. As to social indicators, though, there doesn't seem to have been, as of now, a dramatic change since the early 80's. Things will soon get to the point where they had been for the last decades.

That's my humble opinion. Greenspan tried to get out of the way of the current crisis by saying its signs started to show up only in the end of his term, but I think he knows more than that.

I don't know the extent to which the war in Iraq is linked to the current recession. It may well be a worsening circumstance and I guess it's pretty fair to say that it will have a long-term impact on U.S economy. I think people hope the war will turn out to be profitable enough to cover such costs. I don't know.

And, of course, I'm not talking about the legitimacy of the war. ;-)))) It'd be pointless and discussion could go on forever and ever, especially after the U.S having publicly denied to put out the reports which would allegedly prove the link between Saddam and Al-Qaeda. This will generate more discussion about the legitimacy of the whole thing.

I'll cleverly not give away my opinion. :-))))

But I'd like to ask to U.K residents whether it's true that the British have been denying Iraqi refugges a political asylum or harbor and pressing them to return to...Iraq. I mean, it didn't have much sense, at least to me, when I read it, but then news here are, you know, not good. lol If that's true, however, wow, that'd be a fascist-like measure, wouldn't it?


Yara
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Posted: 20 Mar 08, 07:44 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Just to clarify, the United States is not in a recession, and there has not been one since 2001. However, there are fears of an upcoming recession in 2008.

A recession is marked by two consecutive quarters of stagnant or negative GDP growth.


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Posted: 20 Mar 08, 09:13 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks for the article, MusicMan. And I now admire you even more for being able to study that stuff. I know it's important, but I honestly think if I had to study all that stuff at a college level I'd go insane...and so I leave it to people like you, who are interested in that kind of thing LOL.

My two cents:
The war in Iraq did not cause the recession (if indeed we are in one, and try to find some experts that agree on this subject if you can). Granted it is exacerbating the problem, but it's not the cause of it. Cause is something that many people like to pin down to one thing, but in my humble experience in studying history the cause of anything is NEVER a single event; it is always a series of events that happen at the same time, though there is usually one trigger (but the trigger being present in other circumstances would not cause the events in question. You cannot have one without the other). Some other factors include: Rising medical care costs and its effect on business, rising dependence on credit cards for income, imbalance in things like NAFTA and outsourcing, social security solvency (or the lack thereof), and of course the .com bubble burst and the claims of Clinton to have achieved a "Budget Surplus" which most economists will point out was never actually a true surplus, just one engineered on paper. Besides, we cannot know for sure the costs of the Iraq war. Bush hasn't followed the proscribed methods and paths for creating a federal budget except in the years 2001 and 2004; the other years have been run on a "Supplemental" pattern where the President simply tells Congress how much money he needs in a lump sum, they give it to him and he distributes it. How much of that money has he put into DOD and DHS? We will likely never know.

About Spitzer, the reason he was caught up was because of his use of phones. All of this information came to light as part of a wire tapping investigation, which like it or not the White House has been engaged in since the attacks of 9-11. Now one cannot say that he Feds decided to make this information public because of Spitzer's reputation with Wall Street, but one can never know. As I pointed out, Spitzer broke Federal Law when he had this woman come across state lines to engage in illegal activity. Any crime that crosses state lines automatically jumps into the jurisdiction of the Feds. It would be awful difficult to bring federal charges against him quietly. If they are preparing to bring Federal charges against him, that could be a very valid reason they pointed all of his involvement out.


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Posted: 21 Mar 08, 06:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Very interesting topic. I lived in Upstate NY when Spitzer was Governor Pataki's Attorney General...he had the reputation for being a real hard nosed S.O.B. I haven't considered thinking what this has to do with the United States Economy, and other things. I can't help but laugh at this because in America the Republicans (Conservatives) get in deep shit for selling their soul for a nickel...and the Democrats (Liberals) find a way to always get in some sort of sex scandal. It never fails. But maybe I'm not serious enough about discussing what politicians like to do to hookers.


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Let our candle always burn;

Let us never lose the lessons we have learned." - Brian May