Barney Frank and the Planet of the Banks by Ralph Nader

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by Ralph Nader
The Nader Page
Oct. 16, 2009

Ralph Nader after the speech - Green Lecture

Image by Dandelion Salad via Flickr

What planet is Congressman Barney Frank on, anyway? It is the planet of the banks and other financial firms that keep his campaign coffers humming, as their chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.

On his extraterrestrial perch, camouflaged by his witty and irreverent observations, he sees the agony of gouged, debt-ridden consumers and homeowners, but his actions do not measure up.

As of this writing before the final set of hearings, Mr. Frank has dropped key provisions from a proposal to establish an independent Consumer Financial Protection Agency (CFPA).

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Chair. Bernanke reports to Congress about the economy + Testimony + Grayson grills

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Testimony

Chairman Ben S. Bernanke
Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress
Before the Committee on Financial Services, U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.
July 21, 2009 Continue reading

Cut the Military Budget By Barney Frank

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By Barney Frank
ICH
February 25, 2009 “The Nation

I am a great believer in freedom of expression and am proud of those times when I have been one of a few members of Congress to oppose censorship. I still hold close to an absolutist position, but I have been tempted recently to make an exception, not by banning speech but by requiring it. I would be very happy if there was some way to make it a misdemeanor for people to talk about reducing the budget deficit without including a recommendation that we substantially cut military spending.

Sadly, self-described centrist and even liberal organizations often talk about the need to curtail deficits by cutting Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and other programs that have a benign social purpose, but they fail to talk about one area where substantial budget reductions would have the doubly beneficial effect of cutting the deficit and diminishing expenditures that often do more harm than good. Obviously people should be concerned about the $700 billion Congress voted for this past fall to deal with the credit crisis. But even if none of that money were to be paid back–and most of it will be–it would involve a smaller drain on taxpayer dollars than the Iraq War will have cost us by the time it is concluded, and it is roughly equivalent to the $651 billion we will spend on all defense in this fiscal year.

[…]

via Cut the Military Budget – ICH

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Weapons programs re-branded as jobs programs

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TheRealNews

As unemployment in the US rises, old War on Terror appeals to national security are taking a backseat to economic justifications. The US military industry has adjusted to this new reality by crafting its requests for government funding on the basis of its capacity to provide employment. This despite evidence that military spending is one of the least effective means of job creation.

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