Saturday, March 7, 2009
It will be time to nationalize the banks very, very soon. It's coming.
Still, Dr. Manhattan is naked. A lot.
Go see it anyway.
State bank regulators closed Freedom Bank of Georgia Friday, making it the 17th bank to fail this year.With the FDIC asking for up to $500 billion more this week in order to deal with banks like this across the country, it's clear Sheila Bair is expecting a massive number of failed banks to swamp the country in 2009...or just several very large banks to fail.
The announcement marks the eighth consecutive week that a bank failure has been reported after the stock market's closing bell on a Friday.
The failed bank, based in Commerce, Ga., had $173 million in assets and $161 million in deposits as of March 4, 2009, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
The FDIC estimates the bank failure will cost its fund approximately $36.2 million.
Northeast Georgia Bank of Lavonia, Ga., agreed to assume all of the failed bank deposits, and buy about $167 million in assets, which it valued as worth $13.65 million less than their face value. The FDIC will retain the remaining assets.
The new bank and the FDIC have agreed to split the losses on $96.5 million in assets as part of a loss-share transaction
To me, this seems to be a dead giveaway that Plan N is now in active mode and once this bipartisan bill passes with open support from both sides, Plan N will be on, and the FDIC will be on the front lines. Planning for the FDIC needing half a trillion dollars to specifically handle bank failures? That's not something you do lightly.
Clearly, the Obama administration, Congress, and the FDIC are all expecting that money to be used. The practical upshot is that we're just getting into the era of massive bank failures in 2009.
But it was Ken Starr, best known for prosecuting President Bill Clinton, who stole the show on Thursday after leveling an argument that a simple majority vote is enough to remove any right from a minority group.Once again, I'll post my argument against Prop 8 that I made in December when it became clear that this legal nonsense was the real thrust of the Prop 8 effort.
The people "have the raw power to define rights," he told the court while arguing in favor of invalidating over 18,000 marriages.
"The right of the people is inalienable to change their constitution through the amendment process," said Starr. "The people are sovereign and they can do very unwise things, and things that tug at the equality principle."
Chief Justice Ronald George posed a hypothetical: what if the majority demanded the right to free speech be revoked?
"After much banter back and forth, Starr says they do," reported Advocate.com. The Los Angeles Times reported similarly on Starr's alarming response.
"So, what Starr is saying is that if the people had stripped all civil rights from gays and lesbians, he would argue to uphold that," opined the blog GayWired.
The really disturbing precedent here is that civil rights can be taken from a minority under the guise of "the will of the people." Under that logic, why not institute a new era of Jim Crow laws aimed at African-Americans or Latinos under a proposition vote? Why not put the practice of Islam in the US to a vote, and close down all mosques should the measure pass?And this is exactly what Ken Starr is arguing. Good or bad, he believes a simple majority vote is enough to strip any rights away from any group or groups. Denying civil rights to the minority because the majority wants to do so is of course the complete reversal of the notion of civli rights for all in the first place.
If you believe that you can take basic human rights like marriage away from a group based solely on sexual preference, you should be able to take rights based on religion, race, age, gender, or any other discriminatory criteria.
The danger that this effort represents is tantamount. The supporters of this effort will not stop there. Once you codify into law the ability of the many to take away the rights of the few, it will be used against any and every group. Once you've established a threshhold that one group cannot cross because of their minority status, all that remains is to steadily lower the bar until that group has no civil rights at all. Why not revoke the rights of gays and lesbians period? Why not apply the same standard to Muslims or Jews? Doesn't the Islamic or Jewish idea of marriage differ with the Christian one? Isn't that the argument used to deny gays and lesbians the right to marry?Why stop there, Prop 8 supporters? Go for the whole ball of wax. Let's deny civil rights to everyone who is different.
And now, the danger is breathtakingly inherent. If California's Supreme Court buys this argument, then civil rights in the state of California are done and dead. Can you imagine this argument coming up before SCOTUS and possibly being accepted? That protecting a minority is inferior to protecting the will of the majority?
And yet California's Supreme Court seems to be doing exactly that, buying the argument that the majority can take from the minority with a simple majority vote.
Remember, you're a minority compared to the rest of the country on at least one view you have. Once you accept the basic legal argument that the majority can invalidate the rights of the minority, then there's no reason to stop at gay marriage. Why not deny gays all civil rights? Why not do the same for Hispanics or Blacks? Why not do the same for women?
The journey to fascism is so much easier when the people themselves are pulling the cart.
- Zimbabwe PM Morgan Tsvangirai is recovering from what his party is calling an assassination attempt, one that claimed his wife.
- Arguing for California's Prop 8, Ken Starr (yes that Ken Starr) argues that any right can be revoked by majority vote, even Constitutional ones.
- Obama's first European swing as President will include Turkey.
- The UK government may take an up to 77% stake in famed bank Lloyd's of London.
- Can you hack a Kindle 2? Believe what you read on this e-reader.