Obama Sells Us Down the River Again

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After all the excesses and fiascoes the financial community (and country) has undergone – and continues to undergo – you would think that Washington would be more than motivated to keep the foxes out of the hen house.

Especially when it comes to Wall Street's love of building derivatives that fall just shy of being illegal, but certainly self-serving. You would think that this populist-sounding president would be keeping his regulatory Cerberus, which guards the Securities and Exchange Commission (stocks and bonds) and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (futures, derivatives, options), hungry, alert and only well-fed on investor injustice.

Well, the fact is, not so much. Seems Wall Street has thrown a juicy steak over the fence of the CFTC… again.

As proof of the Washington axiom that no good regulator goes unpunished, President Obama appears set to nominate an inexperienced Senate aide to replace current CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler.

Even though President Obama nominated Gensler, whose term isn't up until year-end, rumors are flying that Amanda Renteria, the former chief of staff to Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich, will be nominated as the next head of the regulatory agency that oversees the $630 trillion derivatives markets.

A New Sheriff in Town

Gensler, whom I respectfully call Gary Genslinger, has been taking aim at big banks' risky derivatives trading, much of which was responsible for bringing the financial world to its knees in 2008.

But Gensler hasn't often had his way. Intense lobbying by bank advocacy groups and lawmakers, as well as pushback from fellow commissioners, has stymied the chairman's efforts to complete Dodd-Frank-mandated rules and regulations.

Gensler recently was forced to relent on a personal crusade to have the commission implement final proposals to make swaps trading more transparent.

He fought for months to move bilateral trading conducted primarily by phone through derivatives brokers, including ICAP Plc., GFI Group and Tullett Prebon, as "voice-brokering" intermediaries, onto electronic trading platforms called Swap Execution Facilities (SEF), called for as part of the Dodd-Frank overhaul. And, Gensler wanted prospective swaps customers trading with swap-dealing banks to be offered a minimum of five quotes by different dealers before entering a trade.

With fellow commissioners voting against him, Gensler relented last month, yielding to the power of the voice-brokers, including ICAP which has been implicated directly in the Libor scandal and enmeshed in another multi-trillion dollar manipulation scheme involving swaps pricing, to allow voice-brokering to continue and cap the quote requirement at only three offers, as opposed to the more competitive proposed requirement of needing five quoted offers.

A Stone in Wall Street's Shoe

Another fight is looming among the commissioners as a July 12 deadline approaches.

The CFTC, against Gensler's advocacy, granted big banks a temporary exemption from rules governing cross-border swaps, based on bank lobbying efforts to quell the rules that they say would disadvantage U.S. banks in the global marketplace for swaps.

The exemption expires in July and pressure is mounting on Gensler to grant an additional two-year exemption. The chairman's articulated fear is that another extension will only give banks time to have the rules watered down or undone entirely.

The move to nominate a new chairperson before Gensler's term is up would not only shut him out from seeking another term and make him a lame duck, it would also signal a significant victory for big banks, their lobbyists and the lawmakers whose campaign war chests are flush with siphoned-off bonus pool money from their darling constituents.

As chairman of the five-member CFTC, Gensler has drawn fire from big banks, the Treasury Department, U.S. lawmakers, foreign regulatory agencies and activist lobbyists over his attempts to shoot holes through the opaque walls that surround trading in the extremely lucrative swaps market. The swaps market is principally controlled by the G-16 dealers, composed of the world's largest trading banks.

One commissioner on the five-member CFTC panel, Mark Wetjen, a former aide to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., was the frontrunner to replace Gensler as chairman until his obvious Wall Street leanings exposed him as a jaded bank cheerleader.

So, with the July exemption extension looming and big banks' inside man outed, the once presumably public-minded and former bank-bashing president of the United States looks ready to undercut Dodd-Frank safeguards he championed and signed into law, by castrating his 2009 chosen CFTC man and putting forward a more pliable candidate.

Nominating Ms. Renteria, who according to Senate staffers, "worked on Dodd-Frank but didn't play a significant role," and labored on Senator Stabenow's behalf on the healthcare overhaul and the auto bailout, suggests the administration prefers an inexperienced and light-touch regulator as opposed to a hard-charging, fix-what's-wrong rule-maker and enforcer.

While Ms. Renteria worked for Goldman Sachs Group Inc. as a financial analyst after graduating from Stanford University and later went to Harvard Business School, there's nothing in her background to suggest any depth of knowledge about the arcane intricacies of the most complicated and dangerous product mix that comprises the derivatives underworld.

However, Senator Stabenow said in an e-mail last Thursday Ms. Renteria would be a "tremendous asset to the administration" because "she's known for building bridges to find consensus and get things done."

Whatever that means. And I'm guessing it's not good news for anyone outside of Wall Street.

Join the conversation. Click here to jump to comments…

About the Author

Shah Gilani is the Event Trading Specialist for Money Map Press. He provides specific trading recommendations in Capital Wave Forecast, where he predicts gigantic "waves" of money forming and shows you how to play them for the biggest gains. In Short-Side Fortunes, Shah shows the "little guy" how to make massive size gains – sometimes in a single day – by flipping large asset classes like stocks, bonds, commodities, ETFs and more. He also writes our most talked-about publication, Wall Street Insights & Indictments, where he reveals how Wall Street's high-stakes game is really played.

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  1. Josepus | June 18, 2013

    This is all smoke and screens. The US government is broke and it is in the hands of Wall Street. We all know that Wall Street have the permission to steal all they can from anyone they can as long as they look after the law makers. Slowly but surely every country on earth is getting screwed by these HFT's. When all is over, Iran will have the nuclear explosion, Israel will have its nuclear explosion, and we will have our revolution.

  2. George Jacobs | June 18, 2013

    Shah, thank you. This is so obviously a government bought and sold by the banks and corporations. It's sad and it's going to get worse before it gets better. But it will end, hopefully in a better future. There is an evolutionary process going on that has at least a chance to move humanity in a more wholesome direction and there are many people, now on the sidelines, who are quietly moving things in that direction. Your efforts to communicate the truth of the current situation is part of that process. Hats off!

    George Jacobs, Gardiner, NY

    • Wayne | June 18, 2013

      George, you say that there is a evolutionary process going on that would eventually move the country in a more wholesome direction. All I see is a few organizations randomly trying to stem the tide of big banks influence in Washington. But the effect is like taking a shotgun to hit a target over 1000 feet away. There will be no real affect in Washington until the voters realize that the only way to win the game is to take the lesson that Big business and big banks have used to win. That is for the voters to form their own lobby and become dedicated to examining each and every issue and legislation to determine it's effect on the well being of the economy and the public instead of the advancement of the industries lobbing for any legislation.

      Big business and especially big banks have usurped the middle class's voice in government by buying influence in Congress (through bribes and campaign contributions) and the only way to counter their influence is to expose the purpose of any legislation and to expose those Congresspeople who are voting for legislation that is written and sponsored by lobbies and the "big money" behind it. The limited efforts of scattered organizations who are trying to expose this problem now are both ineffectual and wasting of donor money and have little affect on Congressional opinion. However, a Citizens lobby that examines legislation and exposes the harm it does to the economy and the general public and also exposes the way Congresspeople vote would do more for the general public than all these organizations combined. And it would get "big money" out of Washington because Congresspeople would rather represent "the people" than lose their office by being exposed as "crooks" by a lobby that truly represented the interests of the "real Americans".

  3. Margaret Wilkie | June 18, 2013

    George Bush sold us, not Obama.

    • DD | June 18, 2013

      Margaret – I agree with you. I am not an O supporter, but it's wrong to blame O for all of this mess. This started long (decades in fact) before Boy Bush got into the WH, but most people only focus on the here and now and forget the past.

      The “privately owned” Federal Reserve (and other elites around the world) have played a magnificently huge part in what's going on in the world (almost) over the last 100 years from the poverty in Africa to the world wars and ME wars and well beyond; for they ALL profit from the chaos in the world that we end up paying for.

      These people MUST be destroyed and their wealth take from them (which really belongs to the people) down to the very last penny so to better infrastructure, health, edu etc for everyone, everywhere and not lining their pockets so they can buy and live in huge mansions etc which they have many, scattered around the globe.

      Look into the Bilderberg Group to see the names of some of these people and then when the supermarkets run out of food, drink and supplies, people will know where to go because you will never ever see the likes of the BG at some food bank or waiting hours in a line for food handouts etc. I can assure everyone, their large cellars will be well and truly fully stocked with only the best of everything.

    • Donna Cusimano | June 18, 2013

      Obama is now carrying the baton, and at breakneck speed.

  4. PHIL@STEINSCHNEIDER.COM | June 18, 2013

    If regulation needs to exist in order to keep something from exploding, shouldn’t we question the existence of that thing? After all, that regulation could be rescinded later, when people think they've gotten smarter and the reason the controls were put in place are no longer valid.

    Surely people will argue that we need regulation to keep the evil folks from doing awful things to the innocent, but aren’t we simply preventing the free market from clearing out the bad apples; or at the very least, punishing them?

    The longer we plug the holes in the dam, the weaker the overall structure becomes. Eventually, no matter what we do, or how well-meaning we may be, the whole thing is going to come down.

    Derivatives and other exotic financial instruments probably wouldn't exist—certainly not in their current form—if we didn’t have a contrived financial system based on fiat currency that is basically being held together with spit and tissue paper. It certainly doesn't benefit the average person, makes an elite very, very rich, and really has a questionable benefit in terms of the productive advances it finances.

    I’m waiting for a respected Princeton economist (they’re the only ones we listen to nowadays) to expose the current system for the sham that it actually is in a series of scholarly academic papers that lends credence to the underlying hypothesis; quantifying the whole Ponzi scheme. Maybe I shouldn't be holding my breath…

    In the end, Mr. Gilani, the economy (which I equate to a "natural system") is going to develop countermeasures not unlike resistant strains of tuberculosis to common antibiotics. It’s only a matter of time before the financial system gets a superbug that no manner of central bank meddling is able to fix. That'll be really painful.

    I, for one, look forward to the nomination of Ms. Renteria, as she'll certainly help precipitate the final cleansing that’s so desperately needed. Our government only makes meaningful change when it has no choice. So far, thanks to the Federal Reserve, it hasn't had to make a single difficult decision in over three decades.

  5. Owen K. | June 18, 2013

    Read the book; "The Creature From Jekyll Island." This book explains all one needs to know about where the true power behind the throne lies.

    • DD | June 18, 2013

      Owen – I wanted to add that most of who is mentioned in the The Creature From Jekyll Island is also involved in some way with the Bilderberg Group – just a generation or two on = same families & Corporations but with more of the elites added over the decades, so same crap as before, just a different day.

      They profit everyday from the common/lesser person's demise, yet few are even aware of this fact!

      Hate to repeat, but everyone just needs to remember that when the supermarkets run out of food, drink and supplies, people will/should know where to go because you will never ever see the likes of the BG et al at some food bank or waiting hours in a line for food handouts etc. I can assure everyone, these wealthy families will have their large cellars well and truly fully stocked with only the best of everything.

      People NEED to know and understand this.

  6. fallingman | June 18, 2013

    If they can find somebody to do LESS than Gensler…ex-Goldman insider and close pal of Jon Corzine…I'd be surprised.

    The so-called "investigation" into rigging in the silver market…which has been acknowledged by Commissioner Bart Chilton…is about 5 years old now and we get nothing, even though a sixth grader given a quick primer on the rules and a few key facts could render a judgment of GUILTY in about 20 minutes.

    Gensler is a stooge and was assigned to do nothing, like Holder. He should be prosecuted under the RICO statutes as a criminall co-conspirator. He's not a "regulator." He's a racketeer.

  7. John S | June 18, 2013

    Lesterland appoints a junior Lester. There are a lot of ways out of the financial mess we are in, but it won't happen while those with a conflict-of-interest have control. These are parasites violating the number 1 rule of parasites: never kill the host, unless there is another host available.

  8. doktor don | June 18, 2013

    There is only one way to restore power to the American People; and, Conservative Republican, Tom Coburn has nailed it, in his Book, "The Debt Bomb." Certainly am not a fan of Coburn's politics; but, on this issue; I happen to agree. TERM LIMITS – – my Friends! Congress men and women don't have to be, beholden to the Rich Lobbyists; when they can't run again. Secondly, all Money for use in Campaigns should be severely restricted; maybe even provided by the Government. We cannot permit the Dark Money Cartels to literally, "BUY," Elections. Third, take a Page from Australia's Political Playbook: No Campaigning whatsoever, sooner than 90 days before the Election. The Country can't take much more of this constant bickering, and hate, that is building between the Parties. Spending too is completely out of hand; when one considers the dire straits that the Nation's Finances are in.

    Another issue of critical concern is the old, "Guns and Butter," argument. It seems to me that for 35 years; our Capital Growth has gone almost entirely to the Military Industrial Complex. And it shows. Look around; decay and neglect are visible everywhere. It appears the Rich will not support anything for the Common Good; either for the Nation – – or, it's People. Not Education, not fairness in the distribution of profits, not the Environment, and not anything that will support Money for Seniors (Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid), They will not support social safety nets, or food for hungry children; they will not support Student Assistance for obtaining a College Education; and, so much more! They profess to be against Abortion; but refuse to fund pre-natal programs for the needy.

    This two year wrangling, and fighting over Money; and, "who said, what-when;" is destroying any sense of Unity. People have become downright, "Uncivil," in the, never-ending,
    Wars of Words between the Parties. In addition, the Congress needs to get back and Focus on the huge Problems facing this Country. They need to do the People's Work; after all, wasn't that what they were elected to do?

    In my View, Elections are determined today by Money and Lies. Even Lies that are Fact-Checked, but, repeated over and over again.

    A Term Limit Formula Option: One Term in the Senate; Two terms in the House. Then, members of both Houses sit out a Term, and go home and listen to the People. If they can get re-elected after sitting out a Term; then Senators would get one additional Term; and House Members, just two more. That's it! Quite frankly, many people are feed up, with our Stinkin & Crony Political and Economic Systems. If we do nothing; I never-ever, want to hear the words: Democracy; or, Free Market Capitalism! The use of such terms is an insult to the intelligence of the American People.

    • DD | June 20, 2013

      Doktor – I agree with a lot of what you say, but this is not just an American problem, it's a worldwide problem since many countries people’s rights/power have or are being taken away everyday as well. There are also no jobs; there’s more poverty worldwide with every decade; poor health care, the suppressing of education w/each generation in most countries across the board, much unfairness in every aspect and the list goes on and on. Nevertheless, it never ceases to amaze me that most American's still blame (illegal) immigrants for a lot of this country’s problems when this is hardly true – these (illegal) immigrants are being used as scapegoats to hide those who are really to blame.

      I also do wish American's would stop making out they're the only ones in this messed up pot. America has never had it so good……even now!

  9. ray | June 18, 2013

    "she's known for building bridges to find consensus and get things done."

    What has 'consensus' and good faith negotiations done for the U.S. and the world over the last 50 years !!

    Undeclared wars; evisceration of Glass-Steagall; mega-corps, Banksters, and Gov't working hand-in-hand to extract more and more cash from the general population via theft (taxation); the Rule of Law has been broken – GM bailout, MF Global, Banksters commit fraud continuously and never have a criminal trial; and Bail-Ins are the planned rescue for Banksters in U.S., EU, Canada for SIFI's. ETC.

  10. Andy Schuck | June 19, 2013

    It all started when Woodrow Wilson naively OK'd the Federal Reserve…..that is where almost all of our problems originate

  11. H. Craig Bradley | June 19, 2013

    WALL STREET VS. THE SIMPLETONS (SIMPSONS)

    What's New? The Bankers and Financial Sector, including the traders, own President Obama. In turn, president Obama owns the unions. Together, they own the politicans who also own the American people who are indifferent, to say the least. Most residents where I live are rather blase about most any current event and sure are not interested in swaps, derivitives, and the intricacies of high-finance. They are just ordinary people who lead relatively simple lives and wish to remain so until they pass-on. So, Shah, nobody really cares, do they?

  12. Sagaer | June 23, 2013

    Its not Obama nor Bush that were the culprits. It's large corporations outsourcing important American jobs to foreign countries that landed the once economic superpower of the world right on it's knees. Now does anyone in the government think they have the guts to openly lash out on these corporations and get those jobs back…. The answer is obviously no. All these white house contenders think that they can create a rhetoric about outsourcing being a problem just before the elections and once elected they can forget all about it. Nor the fed nor the white house can save the US from repeated financial failures, it's just getting Americans back to work that will

  13. Lorne DeWitt | June 24, 2013

    You must be assuming that the three separate branches of government; The executive, legislative and judicial are still functioning as they should. Unfortunately, all these branches have been infiltrated by one powerful group that supercedes all divisions. Public sector unions, aka government unions. We no longer have divisions of power in the US, nor do we have a voice as both parties are controlled by union influence aka (PAC money). You take any politician, they make promises that they never seem able to keep. However, any time a government union wants something done, they always get!

    Take Mass. Republican Gov. Mitt Romany for example, he helped write Romneycare and got it passed in Massachusetts, This expanded state government oversight of health care along with taxation and penalties. This in turn grew government, and expanded union membership. The union wanted their workers to be exempt from all the costs associated with Romneycare including payroll taxes and penalties, which they got. The Federal employee unions saw how wealthy this made Mass. state workers and fattened union coffers so Democrat President Obama borrowed Romney's brainchild and viola, Obamacare. They even got themselves exempted from paying the same taxes and penalties that the rest of us are forced to pay.

    Take Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott, he gave the teacher unions their raises, while Florida tax payers who are still expected to foot the bill haven't seen any raises themselves. Our Florida legislature which is dominated by a huge majority of Republicans, removed the "Rule of Law" pertaining to red light camera tickets. The police unions wanted this one passed as a portion of the monies collected funds their workers retirement and benefits packages. They wanted that money to keep rolling in! Why do you think Brooksville's Chief of Police George Turner is such an ardent supporter of red light cameras?

    Locally, the Hernando County firefighters are getting their's despite the fact that on the BOCC, we have four Republicans and only one Democrat. Why do you think it took so long for the dredge work out in the Gulf at Pine Island to get done? The work was being done by Teamsters (government workers). Think a little fraud might have taken place? I'll say it; I do. I'll bet little brown envelopes were passing under the doors of commissioners within our illustrious court house for not only one, but the better part of two decades while the dredge project was being done!

    We no longer have parties, they are owned by public sector unions. We no longer have divisions/branches of government, they are bought off by unions, often referred to as "special interests." We no longer have liberty and freedom, they have been transformed into social services and bureaucracy. We no longer have a free Republic, it's union sponsored communist styled tyranny. To answer your question; We no longer have a voice, we have despotism! And until we rid our nation of public sector unions; AKA government unions we will forever remain so.

  14. Lorne DeWitt | June 24, 2013

    We all know about the "Evil Democrats" and their designs to destroy capitalism, liberty, and growing the size of government! Why is it that Republicans have sat silently by and allowed it to happen? The Republican Party often attacks and blames Democrats for supporting unions that have contributed to the economic mess we are now experiencing, but fiscal conservatives know better. Republicans are every bit as guilty as Democrats for supporting union expansion into government. Here's how & why.

    1959 saw the first government employees be allowed to unionize in New York. In 1963 President Kennedy signed a bill into law, which allowed public sector unions to organize nationally for the first time, But they were limited to areas that were not considered too sensitive to allow union activities or could compromise the public's interest and the people's trust in government.

    By 1972 the Teamsters broke with traditional support for Democratic nominees and the AFL-CIO when Nixon accepted the Teamsters offer from imprisoned union president James "Jimmy" Hoffa to use their infrastructure and chain of command to organize his reelection campaign. As well as deploy their muscle aka; union thugs and striker teams, to put down anti-war protesters. They even roughed-up Abbie Hoffman at Nixon's request.

    Hoffa had been convicted of jury tampering, attempted bribery and fraud in 1964, and began serving his 13 years sentence in 1967. He wanted a Presidential pardon and release from prison. However, Nixon enjoyed the working relationship that developed with Frank Edward Fitsimmons, who Hoffa had appointed, acting president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters from 1967 to 1971. So Nixon blocked Hoffa from union activities until 1980 as part of the pardon agreement, and Fitsimmons became the Teamsters' president from 1971 to 1981.

    Nixon and Fitsimmons soon discovered that they both could expand their power and control by using both their offices to influence changes that would benefit each other. Fitsimmons got to expand union membership and dues collections into new areas like law enforcement and other critical government positions that were considered too sensitive to allow union activities that could compromise the public's interests and the people's trust in government. While Nixon could exercise more command and control over the departments and agencies under expanding union control. Thus he could avoid publicly requesting the National Guard to put down protesters every time a problem arose and circumvent the US constitution.

    Nixon then began expanding the various Departments of Law Enforcement turned over to union control. In a special message to Congress, On July 14, 1969 President Nixon identified drug abuse as "a serious national threat." Citing a dramatic jump in drug-related juvenile arrests and street crime between 1960 and 1967, Nixon called for a national anti-drug policy at the state and federal level before officially declaring a "War on Drugs" in June 1971. Then he created the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to coordinate the efforts of all other agencies in July 1973.

    The working relationship that the Teamsters Union and the Republican Party had didn't end with Nixon's subsequent impeachment from office. In 1980, Ronald Reagan forged a close political relationship with Jackie Presser. Presser would later become president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters from 1983 until his death in 1988. He was closely connected to organized crime, and became president of the Teamsters based on the approval and support of the Cleveland Mafia.

    During Reagan's 1980 campaign for president, Presser served as one of Reagan's hosts at a private luncheon for Teamsters and other union leaders and escorted Reagan to private meetings with Teamster officials. Reagan was highly regarded by union leaders because he had served as union president of the Screen Actors Guild from 1947-1952 and 1959-1960. He also served as a key negotiator through eventful years that were marked by labor-management disputes, such as the Taft-Hartley Act, House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) hearings and the Hollywood blacklist era.

    The Teamsters endorsement of Reagan in 1980, created such a furor within the American labor movement that when the second Reagan endorsement came in 1984, Vice President George H. W. Bush accepted the endorsement in person. The Teamster endorsement was the only large labor union endorsement Reagan received. In gratitude, Reagan named Presser to the second Reagan transition team as a labor advisor.

    The media soon reported that Presser was reputed to have links to organized crime and financial malfeasance. Reagan and his advisors claimed to have been unaware of the accusations, and Presser denied having any ties to organized crime. New Jersey State Police witnesses testified that Presser was the primary contact for the DeCavalcante crime family of New Jersey and the Patriarca crime family of Boston whenever crime figures needed loans from Teamster pension funds.

    When PATCO, the tiny union of federal air traffic controllers with only about 25,000 members that also endorsed Reagan in 1980, went on strike in the summer of 1981, violating a federal law prohibiting government unions from striking. Reagan declared the situation an emergency as described in the 1947 Taft Hartley Act. He said that if the air traffic controllers "do not report for work within 48 hours, they have forfeited their jobs and will be terminated." They did not return and on August 5, with Teamster's permission, Reagan fired all 11,345 air traffic controllers who had ignored his order, and used supervisors and military controllers to handle the nation's commercial air traffic until new controllers could be hired and trained.

    The PATCO affair didn't stop unions from expanding their control, infact both Reagan and Presser knew it was all just a means to an end. Reagan used the opportunity to give himself the appearance of being tough on unions. And all the while, as everything went according to plan, the "new hires" were subsequently absorbed into the union, and guess what happened then? PATCO was soon at full strength again! So he made it appear that he took action when in reality he didn’t do anything but throw some magic dust into the air to confuse voters. Mission accomplished; Reagan and conservatives were free to claim victory over unions, while the "liberal" Ronald Reagan and government unions got their way.

    On 27 October 1986, Reagan signed a drug enforcement bill that budgeted $1.7 billion to fund the War on Drugs and specified a mandatory minimum penalty for drug offenses. By so doing, he expanded law enforcement and correctional departments and their corresponding unions exponentially. It also expanded the Department of Justice (DOJ) and added another 200,000 workers to federal payrolls. Trillions of dollars later, it's now just another great financial burden for Americans. The Teamsters anticipating the new law had already positioned themselves so they would benefit the most among all public sector unions when it passed.

    The amount spent to fund the "War on drugs now exceeds $40 billion annually and still continues to grow, thus the ground work had already been layed when the 911 attacks occurred on Sept. 11, 2001. The process was completed when the Homeland Security Act, Border Security Act, and both Patriot Acts had passed through both Republican controlled houses of congress and were signed into law by Republican President George W. Bush. These laws have transformed the US into an American police state.

    Therefore, it's already too late, you fell for it folks; while you were drinking the "Kool-Aid" both parties, Democrats and Republicans, tricked you into funding the very government agencies that would one day enslave you, "government police unions." We can no longer claim liberty or freedom. The only thing left for them to do is take our guns away! Once they've accomplished that, it is just a matter of time till we transform into the fascist dictatorship they envision for us!

    They will not take our guns away all at once but, neighborhood by neighborhood, street by street, one city and county at a time, until all the guns are gone. Nixon deinstitutionalized mental patients and since then the "nuts" have been shooting up the place. Now the government has come up with the solution to fix the problem that, "once again they themselves created." How convenient it is for them, to take our right to own fire arms away, than it is to "lock up" or "terminate" the violent and/or criminally insane offenders.

  15. Lorne DeWitt | June 24, 2013

    Here is my alternate version of Paul Harvey's timeless classic, "If I Were the Devil." I call it –

    RIP America, Paul Harvey…

    If I were the devil … If I were the Prince of Darkness, I'd want to engulf the whole world in darkness. And I'd have a third of it’s real estate, and four-fifths of its population, but I wouldn't be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree — Thee. So I'd set about however necessary to take over the United States. I'd subvert the churches first — I'd begin with a campaign to infiltrate the churches with "social conservatives" and their desire to control our lives. I would pervert, church leaders and use their religion to fund corrupted politicians. With the wisdom of a serpent, I would use their "social conservatism" to break down the barriers that provide separation between church and state. So they could push their hidden agendas that use religious dogma to cover up their destructive works aimed at usurping and destroying the U.S. Constitution and enslaving Americans. Ultimately I will eliminate, that disgusting God given right called, "choice."

    To the young, I would whisper; What the Founding Fathers meant by "Separation of church and state," was that posting the ten commandments, having religious displays, or praying in public places is wrong. I would convince them that Republicans legislating morals is OK, though. And then I'd get organized, I would have Republican President Nixon declare a "War on Drugs." within a decade I'd have prisons overflowing. Then I would have Republican President Reagan expand it and fund it, until before you knew it, you'd have drug sniffing dogs and metal detectors at every door. Then trillions of dollars later a huge network of prisons would be built, along with expanded law enforcement and a growing judicial system, till it transformed the US into an American police state.

    I would convince Americans that they needed to trade their liberty for security from terrorist attacks by having both Republican controlled houses pass; the Homeland Security Act, Border Security Act, and both Patriot Acts. I would then have Republican President George W. Bush sign them into law. With Soviet styled heavy handed tactics, Homeland Security, would then be free to purchase 3 armored divisions (2,717 tanks), an infinite number of drones and 1.6 billion rounds of hollow point ammunition. Enough to kill every American man, woman and child, five times over! Then it would only be a matter of time before Americans would have their guns taken away and the US could finally be transformed into the fascist dictatorship I have envisioned.

    If I were the devil, I would make sure that Americans sat silently by and allowed it to happen by making sure it didn't matter which party was running the country. I would see to it that third party challengers, especially fiscal conservatives, Constitutionalists and Libertarians, were drummed out of consideration by using the media to make them look like quirky and eccentric, whacko-birds. I would convince the electorate that any votes cast their way would be wasted. I'd make certain both parties were becoming identical. With any luck voters would be left choosing from the "Lesser of Two Evils." That's my kind of election! — When Democrats and Republicans facing each other suddenly realize that they're looking into a mirror, they will see that it's the pattern for the future. I will have, infact, created the perfect blueprint for "The New World Order." Good day.

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