Beginning with the auto "bailouts" where in contrast to established bankruptcy rules, secured creditors were forced to accept 33 cents on the dollar in liquidation of the company's debt with the UAW, an unsecured creditor received 50 cents on the dollar, this administration has engaged in what Michael Barone first called "gangster government. Looking at the SEC suit against Goldman Sachs and the Dodd "financial regulation" rules, he sees gangster government a continuing Obama era feature
On its face the complaint seems flimsy. Paulson has since become famous because his firm made billions by betting against mortgage-backed securities. But he wasn't a big name then, and the sophisticated firm buying the CDO must have assumed the seller believed its value would go down.
That's not the only fishy thing about the complaint. Tuesday came the news, undisclosed by the SEC on Friday, that the commissioners approved the complaint by a 3-2 party-line vote. Ordinarily the SEC issues such complaints only when the commissioners unanimously approve.
Fishy thing No. 3: Democrats immediately used the complaint to jam Sen. Christopher Dodd's financial regulation through the Senate. You may want to believe the denials that the Democratic commissioners timed the action in coordination with the administration or congressional leaders.
But then you may want to believe there was no political favoritism in the Chrysler deal too. The SEC complaint looks a lot like Gangster Government to me.
The Dodd bill, however, has it trumped. Its provisions promise to give us one episode of Gangster Government after another.
Crony capitalism, fascism, gangster government, the Chicago Way. However you call it, it's not American. And I hope someone blows the whistle on this soon.