If the Guinness Book of World records had a hypocrisy category, the winner would be Barney Frank, Chairman of the House Banking Committee. Let me revise that, he wouldn’t be the winner, after this latest example they would retire the category.
Yesterday Mr. Frank called for prosecution of the people who caused the banking crisis–see this interview from CNBC yesterday.
The first person that Barney Frank should go after is Barney Frank. Frank and his Democratic friends have brought down the banking industry by forcing banks to give loans to people who couldn’t afford them, then blunting Republican attempts to regulate the industry:
House Financial Services Committee hearing, Sept. 10, 2003:
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Rep. Barney Frank (D., Mass.): I worry, frankly, that there’s a tension here. The more people, in my judgment, exaggerate a threat of safety and soundness, the more people conjure up the possibility of serious financial losses to the Treasury, which I do not see. I think we see entities that are fundamentally sound financially and withstand some of the disaster scenarios.
Frank was the leading OPPONENT of regulating of Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac (see video below) and was able to transfer the entire blame on President Bush.
He never had to answer why he fought so hard to squash regulation, was it the tons of campaign cash Frank got from Freddie and Fannie OR the fact that Frank’s former lover was the former director of housing initiatives for Fannie Mae.
The July 3, 1998, Reliable Source column in The Washington Post reported Frank, who is openly gay, had a relationship with Herb Moses, an executive for the now-government controlled Fannie Mae. The column revealed the two had split up at the time but also said Frank was referring to Moses as his “spouse.” Another Washington Post report said Frank called Moses his “lover” and that the two were “still friends” after the breakup.
Frank aggressively fought reform efforts by the Bush administration. He told The New York Times on Sept. 11, 2003, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s problems were “exaggerated,” ok so maybe he was a bit off, since the twin headed Fannie/Freddie has sacked the American Public with costs estimated to be in the hundreds of billions
“These two entities – Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac – are not facing any kind of financial crisis,” Frank Opined to the Times. “The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing.”
The 10/8/03 Washington Post reported that Frank opposed giving the Bush administration the approval rights over banking business activities that “could pose risk to the taxpayers.” He worried the Treasury Department “would sacrifice activities that are good for consumers in the name of lowering the companies’ market risks.”
Frank Got away with ALL of that. No wonder why he acts as if nothing can touch him, or that anyone who disagrees with him is biased, stupid or just wrong.
Now the Congressman wants to go after the people who caused the current crisis. To help him with his efforts, maybe we should send him mirrors so he can see the most egregious of offenders.