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Sunday, May 16, 2010


This story was written on 2/25/10.  The significance of this date is it is the rolling out of ACORN training model in Kenya.  I have left this story in it's original shape, grammatical errors and all.

Wade Rathke~Community Organizations International


The launch was organized in Korogocho community center where the event was held on 25th Feb 2010.

The event was scheduled to mark the official rolling out of the Acorn training model which is currently being implimented in two of the Korogocho villages namely Highridge and Kisumu Dogo. This was also aimed at popularising the Association which is set to carry out major issue based campaings within the area that majorly affects the Korogocho residents at large.

Despite the big challanges in organizing the event that we faced - like lack of finances, another major event was being hosted by the Italian Ambassador taking place just in the neighbouring village and opposition from some of the influencial gate keepers of the area , the event was a big succsess in that more than 300 people attended the ceremony. Among the key persons who atteded included the Acorn Chief organizer Mr. Wade, local Adinistration ie ( Area Chief and her two Assistants) and fourteen other representatives from different organization working within and outside Korogocho.

These Included The Organizations
1. Acorn International (Wade Rathke)
2. Umande Trust (Fancis Kinyeti)
3. Alternative to violence Project -K (Hannington Muchere)
4. Blue Cross (Jeniffer Otindo)
5. Kenya Network of Women living with Aids KENWA (Gladyce Gyambura)
6. MAKWAK (Agry miheso)
7. Child Peace Africa (Charlse Maina)
8. Amani Pamoja Korogocho (Paster Shango)
9. Koch F.M (Shem Shanzu)
10. Kasarani Youth Representative (Khadija)
11. CASCBI (Christine Nthegah)
12.Miss Koch (Asha abdi)
13. Right and Hope for the Disabled (Ann Njeri)
14. The City Council of Nairobi- Korogocho Ward (Mr.Maneno)

The event was graced by the Chief organizer of Acorn International who had come for a Five days visit to Kenya.

The program kicked off at around 11.00 am with a word of prayer from Pastor Bosire which was follwed by introductions and latter speeches from representatives of various organizations.

To the majority of those who addressed ACORN members, it was a great praise to the work of organizing being carried out in Korocho. They also expressed their deepest desire to work together with Acorn as an Association in supprot to win the campaigns that will be organized.

To mention just a few, the representative from AVP-CAPI programme promised their solideraity by promissing to support the Korogocho community people with Peace and Reconciliation training programmes in conjuction with Acorn -Kenya.

The Youth representative promised to mobilize the youths in the whole Divission to rally behind the campaigns that will be organized.

Koch FM gave the Acorn community members a three hour publicity in the community radio once every week to sensitize the community about the organization and the activities that they are undertaking in Korogocho.

The area Chief was very impressed by the whole programme and urged the community to embrace the model in great numbers so that they can be able to change the face of Korogocho.

Speeking about the Kenyan programme the Chief Organizer Mr. Wade informed all those present that Change is always with the people. He challeged the community people of Korogocho to choose between positive Change or negative change for their life. He informed them that a positive altitude of people brings about positive change and positive perseption of the issues, something that will make them come out in great numbers to challage those in power and control of bringing about the change through massive campaigns.

He also emphasized that change has to start with an individual to be able to convince the others to join up the hands in demand of what is rightifully theirs. Its only through this way that the effect of Acorn will be felt in the neighbourhoods, entire community and even to the other neighbouring informal settlements within Nairobi.

The event was crowned with a tree planting ceremony within the Chief's camp compound, something that made the whole event very colourful and significant of the day.

Seven trees were planted that day by different representatives from different organizitions who were present in the occassion.

The whole event ended very peacefully at around 3.00pm


Kenya ACORN launched in 2009 and is working organizing low income Kenyan's around issues of basic health and quality of life issues. Below are some pictures of their early work:



This article was taken from Wade Rathke's Chief Organizer Blog and is dated 3/1/10

Kenya Campaigns Coming

Kenya Campaigns Coming

Johannesburg-AirportJohannesburg Sitting here with a day to kill in the Joberg airport and ruing having just spent 75 rand for a special South African adapter so I can make it through and finding the young clerk at the “Electronics Megastore” joining me in commiseration that there was no free wireless anywhere in the airport, it was more pleasant to think about the fruitful and hurried last day in Nairobi.

We started slowly with another fast moving series of matatu rides which amazingly got us to Trinity Catholic Church right outside of Korogocho in record time of hardly a half-hour. It’s impossible not to like Father John. He seems young, but is probably 40, and wearing a white Kenya soccer jersey, there would have been no way to ID him as a priest, if we were not in the rectory meeting with him in a side room. He was a kindred spirit in the “cultural” wars of overturning the NGO and donor dependency that created false consensus in meetings where local people now thought they simply were supposed to ask that something be done and learn to accept whatever the NGOs offered. Unions are so unknown to poor people in Nairobi that it was easier to talk about the comparisons between the Church as a gather of believers and our community organization as similar with dues instead of a collection plate. Father John agreed that we could work out of his school when needed and would always be welcome to a desk, and we walked out feeling we had a true friend here for our work in Korogocho.

Much of the rest of the day was spent in housekeeping around the sundry administrative details we needed to move the work forward from our registration to simple bookkeeping to work on the internet, websites, Facebook, and even a fundraising program for the organizers to move forward around Citizen Wealth. All good stuff, but the heart and soul of the afternoon was doing campaign planning for the next steps we needed to take to develop action and progress on the “slum upgrading” commitment on housing, forcing the promised hospital to be built, and moving on education both to deliver “bursary scholarships” as they are called and see if we could develop a plan to force the building of a public, primary school in the slum. It’s a pleasure to be able to sit down for 6-7 hours with organizers and come out of it with a full list of things to be done and, importantly, a feeling that tasks are clear and problems are being solved. We have a good, talented, raw team in Kenya, so now we have to ensure that they succeed.

I managed to top off the day at dinner with old comrade, Rick Hall, from the AFL-CIO Solidarity Center. We celebrated the fact that having gotten me to ferry Jameson’s to him a year ago, he had converted me in that direction. He had exciting plans that also found me a quick volunteer to build an “organizing institute” in the countries he works with in East Africa. Rwanda for example has no unions and no collective bargaining now and is virtually what Brother Hall called a “US client state” where even commercial institutions are willing to encourage the building of unions (though it may be temporary of course) to help bring stability and restore some measure of strength in civil society. Spending some time helping him there would be worth the climb. Our conversation also reminded me of my blog a year ago about enforcing the new wage and benefit standards for domestic workers. Nothing has changed in a year, but perhaps its high time.

It was nice to be in Kenya doing real work with our organizers, members, and leaders finally after the long trips over several years to pave the way so that we could now see the path forward.
Fast forward a we coincidentally have the US of A pressuring Kenya to push the legalization of abortions.  I don't think it's a coincidence that just as ACORN International is getting their claws into the citizens of Kenya that they are now being "educated" on women's health, which in socialist lingo means, you need to abort your baby.

Obama Administration Pressures Kenya to Adopt Constitution Legalizing Abortion

Obama Administration Pressures Kenya to Adopt Constitution Legalizing Abortion

by Steven Ertelt Editor
April 7
, 2010

Nairobi, Kenya ( -- President Barack Obama wasted little time after his election in promoting abortion abroad by overturning the Mexico City Policy and forcing Americans to pay for abortions and abortion promotion in other nations. Now the Obama administration is attempting to get Kenya to legalize abortion.

As has reported, the African nation of Kenya saw its parliament approved a draft Constitution that would overturn its historic prohibition on abortions.

Although the draft contains language advocating the right to life for unborn children, it contains a section with a health exception that essentially opens the nation to unlimited abortions throughout pregnancy for any reason.

Before the revised constitution can come into force, it must be approved by popular vote -- expected in July.

While pro-life groups have been working directly with local pro-life advocates in Kenya to urge the nation's residents to reject the proposed constitution when it comes up for a vote, the Obama administration is working for its adoption.

US Ambassador to Kenya Michael Ranneberger is calling on Kenya's political leaders to rally the people to pass the referendum.

According to the Capital News service, Ranneberger issued a statement praising the Kenya parliament for passing the proposed constitution and urging President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga to rally support for it.

“The leaders of the coalition government have sent a clear and positive message to the Kenyan people that the implementation of a new Constitution is critical to achieving political reform,” the Obama administration official said.
“We urge the leaders of the coalition government, civil society, and religious leaders to maintain positive momentum as Kenya moves towards a national referendum on the draft Constitution,” he added. “Unity in support of the draft will bring the Kenyan people together and establish a framework which will greatly improve prospects for democratic stability and shared prosperity for all Kenyans.”

Ranneberger also responded to the pro-abortion concerns international and local pro-life advocates have brought up -- suggesting the people of Kenya accept the constitution regardless.

“No political process and no constitution is perfect – including those of the United States – but the proposed Constitution contains checks and balances which will ensure greater accountability and adherence to the rule of law.”

“The new Constitution will, therefore, secure and protect the interests of all communities and regions of the country,” he said.

Ranneberger also suggested the Obama administration would fund a national campaign to persuade the people to adopt the document.

Meanwhile, Joseph Meaney of Human Life International weighed in on the debate today and said the constitution violates the views of most Kenyans who are pro-life.

"Kenyans are pro-life," he said. "When we see the new articles added to the constitution and approved by parliament under heavy pressure from Western elites, we are seeing an assault on the very heart of the Kenyan people."

"Perhaps the greatest insult is that this attack is happening under the banner of 'improving women's health'. The only ones who believe that killing an unborn child is good for a woman's health are those who will profit from the slaughter, Western powers who are pouring untold millions of dollars into measures to keep Africa's children from being born," he told

"This is nothing but population control, an imperialist assault intended to rob Africa of its future by eliminating her children. It is a disgrace," he said.

Meaney called on Kenya's civic and religious leaders to wake up to the urgency of the matter, imploring that they reach out to all Kenyans ahead of the referendum, and lead them in demanding that human life be protected from the point of conception in Kenya's constitution.

A poll conducted March 21–26 by the polling firm Synovate, formerly known as Steadman, shows the citizens of Kenya are overwhelmingly pro-life.

“Thinking about abortion, which of the following is closest to your view?” the firm asked respondents.
Some 69 percent of Kenya residents are against legalizing abortions while just 9 percent support it. Another 16 percent say it doesn't matter while 6 percent said they had no opinion.

Answering the question, “When do you believe human life begins?” 77 percent of Kenyans stated that life begins at conception, while 19 percent stated that human life begins at the time of birth.
Respondents were also asked about their views concerning the new Kenyan Constitution and the question found only 19 percent support it as currently written, while a majority, 52 percent, want Parliament to revise the document before passage.

Scott Fischbach, the director of MMCL Go, an international pro-life outreach, provided the polling results to

"Currently, advocates of abortion are using the issue of maternal mortality and illegal abortions to argue for legalization of the procedure. However, the answer to illegal abortions and high maternal mortality rates is very simple: provide hope, opportunity and support for pregnant women by insuring a clean water supply, clean blood supply and adequate health care," he said.

"Kenya is a pro-life country and ought not to head toward an abortion-on-demand policy in its new Constitution," he added.

Fast forward another there's a congressional probe into Obama's influence and financing of this effort.  " Did the Obama administration spend taxpayer dollars illegally promoting the pro-abortion draft constitution that would have Kenya join the ranks of those nations that allow virtually unlimited abortions? That's what three members of Congress want to know, and they are seeking a federal investigation to find out."

Congressional Probe Sought on Obama Backing Kenya's Pro-Abortion Constitution

Congressional Probe Sought on Obama Backing Kenya's Pro-Abortion Constitution

by Steven Ertelt Editor
May 11
, 2010
Washington, DC ( -- Did the Obama administration spend taxpayer dollars illegally promoting the pro-abortion draft constitution that would have Kenya join the ranks of those nations that allow virtually unlimited abortions? That's what three members of Congress want to know, and they are seeking a federal investigation to find out.

As reported, US Ambassador to Kenya Michael Ranneberger called last month on the African nation's political leaders to rally the people to pass the referendum.

Ranneberger issued a statement praising the Kenya parliament for passing the proposed constitution and urging President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga to rally support for it.

He also suggested the Obama administration would fund a national campaign to persuade the people to adopt the document.

In a letter to Inspectors General of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Government Accountability Office (GAO), Reps. Chris Smith of New Jersey, Darrell Issa of California and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida outline their concerns.

“Kenya’s new proposed constitution, which will be subject to a public referendum in August 2010, includes two articles that, if adopted, would enshrine a new constitutional right to abortion in Kenya and dramatically change Kenya’s abortion law," they write.

The lawmakers wrote, “The Obama Administration’s advocacy in support of Kenya’s proposed constitution may constitute a serious violation of the Siljander Amendment and, as such, may be subject to civil and criminal penalties under the Antideficiency Act."

Although the draft contains language advocating the right to life for unborn children, it contains a section with a health exception that essentially opens the nation to unlimited abortions throughout pregnancy for any reason.

Before the revised constitution can come into force, it must be approved by popular vote -- expected in July or August.

“Kenya’s current constitution includes no reference to abortion and abortion is not legally permitted in Kenya except to save the life of the mother," the pro-life Republican lawmakers said.

They added that “any expression of support for or opposition to the proposed new constitution (including by drafting, offering technical advice or providing foreign assistance of any kind that is designed to influence public approval in the upcoming plebiscite) unavoidably involves lobbying for or against abortion."

In the letter, provided by Smith's office to, they said, "This concern is particularly salient given the prominence of the abortion issue in the public debate over the referendum. In fact, the chairman of Kenya’s Committee of Experts on Constitutional Review (the “Committee of Experts”) has identified abortion as one of the four most contentious issues in the proposed constitution.”

Smith also pointed out, “the State Department has pledged to spend $2 million to build support for the proposed constitution. Abortion is violence against children and exploits women.”

Lobbying for or against abortion is prohibited under a provision of federal law known as the Siljander Amendment annually included in the State, Foreign Operations Appropriations Act.

The amendment reads, “None of the funds made available under this Act may be used to lobby for or against abortion,” and violations are subject to civil and criminal penalties under the Antideficiency Act, 31 U.S.C. § 1341.

Smith, the leading Republican on the House Africa and Global Health Subcommittee, was joined by Ros-Lehtinen, the Ranking Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Issa, the top Republican on the House Oversight Committee. All three Members of Congress have broad legal oversight jurisdiction concerning Federal international funds.

The letter went to Gene L. Dodaro, Acting Comptroller General of the U.S. Government Accountability Office; Harold W. Geisel, Acting Inspector General, U.S. Department of State, Office of Inspector General, and to; Donald A. Gambatesa, Inspector General of the U.S. Agency for International Development.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

An Updated List of Goldman Sachs Ties to the Obama Government Including Elena Kagan

By: fflambeau Saturday May 8, 2010 9:13 pm
I. Introduction.
This essay shows the pervasive influence of Goldman Sachs and its units (like the Goldman-Robert Rubin-funded Hamilton Project embedded in the Brookings Institution) in the Obama government. These names are in addition to those compiled on an older such list and published here at FDL. In the future, I will combine the names here and those on the earlier article but I urge readers to look at the earlier list too (links below). Combined, this is the largest and most comprehensive list of such ties yet published.

For readability and clarity, I have NOT included many of the details and links that are found in the earlier article so as to make this one less repetitive and easier to read. So, if you want more documentation, please look at my earlier diary here at Firedoglake called "A List of Goldman Sachs People in the Obama Government: Names Attached To The Giant Squid’s Tentacles" published on April 27, 2010.

Note too that I have intentionally used the words, "Obama government" rather than "Obama administration" because some of these connections are not technically within his administration. These would include ambassadorial appointments and Supreme Court appointments (like that anticipated for Elena Kagan). This also includes lobbyists like Dick Gephardt who has multiple connections/input to Obama and to Goldman Sachs and the Hamilton Project.

In a similar vein, I use a broader definition than just Goldman Sachs (GS) because GS has funded, along with its ex-leader Robert Rubin, a right-leaning think tank called the Hamilton Project and embedded it within the Brookings Institution. Some of its activities thus also spill over into Brookings Institution projects which doubtlessly was one of the clever reasons Rubin and GS did this, along with providing their essentially neo-con/neo-liberal think tank with camouflage. This has worked beautifully for GS and Rubin as most writers–even critical ones like Matt Taibbi–seem unaware of the important doings of the Hamilton Project. The Hamilton Project has 32 people sitting on its Advisory Council and many have ties to Goldman Sachs, Rubin and the Obama government. Of the first four Directors of the Hamilton Project, three work in the Obama administration. Meanwhile, the most recent Director of the Hamilton Project came from academia and from a position as economic adviser to the Obama administration to Hamilton in the sort of "revolving door" that Washington is famous for.

The Hamilton Project (named after Alexander Hamilton whose most famous dictum was "The People are a Great Beast") is essentially pushing for cuts in entitlements (like social security), outsourcing American jobs, and for more NAFTA-type agreements. This is essentially the game plan for the Obama administration, not surprising since Barack Obama was the inaugural speaker at the Hamilton Project (and Joe Biden spoke there just weeks ago).

NOTE: This diary and its predecessor are the result of a lot of painstaking work. I am sure there are other Goldies out there in the Obama administration who I have missed. If so, PLEASE let me know by dropping their name in a comment below.
II. Additional Names of Goldies serving with Obama.

Enough background information, let’s reveal the Goldies with connections/jobs within the Obama government (or with "revolving door" status). For your convenience, I’ve listed the new names to the list separately and in the first section, led off by Elena Kagan because the buzz is that she is Obama’s pick to the Supreme Court.

NEW GOLDIES REVEALED (with respect to prior article):
Kagan was appointed by Obama to serve as the Solicitor General. The Solicitor General, often called the 10th Supreme Court Justice, is the person who argues the U.S. government side of cases before the court. Buzz has it that she is also Obama’s next pick to the Supreme Court, perhaps as early as this Monday.

At any rate, she’s already in the Obama government as Solicitor General. She also has ties to Goldman Sachs. From 2005 to 2008, according to USA Today and other sources, Kagan served as a member of the Research Advisory Council of the Goldman Sachs Global Markets Institute. Matt Kelley of USA Today wrote in his article, "Possible Supreme Court Pick Had Ties to Goldman Sachs" that Kagan received $10,000 from Goldman Sachs for her services in 2008, per federal disclosure forms. But since she was doing the same thing in 2005, 2006, and 2006, it would appear that she pulled in $40,000 from Goldman Sachs for what appears to be sitting in on one day sessions looking at big issues affecting the global economy. $40,000 grand for so little time is a nice gig if you can get it (and she likely got expenses too) for so little time. It’s not a huge amount but it is enough to affect a player’s mind.

Here are some questions that Senators on the Judiciary Committee might want to ask of Kagan:

1) Can you produce all the paperwork/receipts related to your ties to Goldman Sachs?

2) Did you report the GS payments as income on your income tax returns (lots of people in the Obama administration (like Timothy Geithner) or wanting to be (like Tom Daschle) seem to have trouble filling out proper IRS forms.

3) Will you recuse yourself in any cases brought before you at the Supreme Court (if confirmed) that have any connection, no matter how remote, to Goldman Sachs or its entities?

4) As Solicitor General of the United States, have you handled (defined largely) any cases relating to Goldman Sachs or its entities? Have you given advice on any such cases?

5) Have you had any dealings with The Hamilton Project? This includes speeches given there, conferences attended, papers published etc.

Here is a murky connection (but an important one) between Obama and Goldman Sachs. Berkowitz serves as the Chairman, Board of Directors of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINAP). It is an important Washington think tank that gives input to Obama. It was established by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in 1985, according to Wikipedia. People affiliated with WINAP are a virtual Who’s Who of foreign policy including Henry Kissinger, Warren Christopher, Lawrence Eagleburger, and Richard Perle.

Berkowitz also is Managing Director of BlackRock and sits on the Advisory Council of the Goldman Sachs funded Hamilton Project.

BlackRock is a global investmentment management firm with over $3.35 trillion under management. There is a virtual revolving door of hiring and acquisitions between BlackRock and Goldman Sachs as reported here.

Dudley, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York web site:
became the 10th president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York on January 27, 2009. In that capacity, he serves as the vice chairman and a permanent member of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), the group responsible for formulating the nation’s monetary policy.
Mr. Dudley was a partner and managing director at Goldman, Sachs & Company and was the firm’s chief U.S. economist for a decade. Earlier in his career at Goldman Sachs, he had a variety of roles including a stint when he was responsible for the firm’s foreign exchange forecasts. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs in 1986, he was a vice president at the former Morgan Guaranty Trust Company. Mr. Dudley was an economist at the Federal Reserve Board from 1981 to 1983.
Dudley seems to have Geithner’s old job, passed from one Goldie to the next.

Effron is a money man. As a bundler for the 2008 Obama campaign, he raised more than $100,000. According to this web site he also was a "Mega Donor" to Obama in 2008, giving more than $28,500 though committees supporting Obama. His wife is also a major contributor, giving tens of thousands of dollars.

Effron is a founding partner of Centerview Partners LLC. Their web site indicates he has executed over $400 billion in transactions.

Effron is also on the Advisory Council of the Goldman Sachs/Robert Rubin funded Hamilton Project.

FROMAN, Michael.
Froman (born August 20, 1962) is deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser for international economic affairs, a position to be held jointly at the National Security Council and the National Economic Council. His responsibilities will include serving as the White House liaison to the G7, G8 and G20 summits of economic powers.[

He's on my prior list but his name was misspelled there (as Frohman). Froman's days with Obama go back to Harvard Law School. Froman appears to be the original link between Robert Rubin/Goldman Sachs and Obama.
From Wikipedia:
>Froman received a bachelor's degree in Public and International Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University in 1985, a doctorate in International Relations from Oxford University and a law degree from Harvard Law School where he was a classmate of Barack Obama[2][3], and also an associate of Obama’s on the Harvard Law Review.[4]

After Harvard, Froman had lost touch with Barack Obama until Froman heard of Obama’s Senate run. Froman volunteered at that point to help, began raising funds for the candidate, and introduced the candidate to Robert Rubin, whom Froman had followed from the Treasury Department to Citigroup [Froman served as Rubin's Chief of Staff] after the Clinton administration.[4] Before moving to the Obama administration, Froman most recently was a managing director of Citigroup’s Citi Alternative Investments Institutional Clients Group, where he was head of infrastructure and sustainable development [5]. He also served on 12-member advisory board of the Obama campaign’s transition team.[1]
this source provides new information indicating Frohman, who was Mr. Goldman Sach’s former Chief of Staff, as an "informal adviser" to Obama. They spell his name as Froman, Michael.

Obama just appointed Fudge to his budget deficit reduction committee (whose real goal, like that of the Hamilton Project, is to cut entitlements). Fudge has been the public relations craftsman for some of America’s largest corporations. She sits, according to the Washington Post, as a Trustee of the Brookings Institution within which the Hamilton Project is embedded.

Gephardt is one of the movers and shakers in the Democratic party and served as the Democratic Majority Leader of the House from 1989 to 1995. While he doesn’t have an "official position" in the Obama administration his name was floated as a possible VP to Obama in 2008. Like so many ex-politicians, Gephardt has set up a consulting firm that has its fingers in just about every pie in the Obama government. Gephardt, for instance, advised the Obama administration, according to the New York Times, that universal health coverage could not pass in 2009 and urged Obama to "defer that goal." That’s what the people Gephardt takes money from wanted and that’s also what Obama did.

Here’s more from The New York Times:
One old friend links Mr. Gephardt’s assessment to his lucrative new career as a lobbyist. “He’s advising a lot of big corporations,” said Tom Buffenbarger, president of the machinists’ union.
Wikipedia says that:
Dick Gephardt started Gephardt Group in January 2005 and is currently its President and CEO. Gephardt Group is a multi-disciplined consulting firm focused on helping clients improve Labor Relations, develop Political and Public Policy Strategies and enhance Business Results by gaining access to new markets or partners.[15]
According to Wikipedia:
is also an active consultant for Goldman Sachs.
Gephardt also sits on the Advisory Council of the Hamilton Project funded by Robert Rubin and Goldman Sachs.

Obama appointed Murphy to serve as his Ambassador to Germany. In the 1990’s, Murphy, who worked for decades with Goldman Sachs, served as GS’s head of its German offices. From 1997-1999, Murphy served as President of Goldman Sachs, Asia (during the Asian economic crisis). In all, according to Wikipedia, Murphy spent 23 years at Goldman Sachs including as a Senior Director of the firm in 2003 before retiring from GS in 2006.

Granoff is a money man, and contributed lots of bucks as a "mega donor" to the Obama campaign. At least $28,500 according to Public Citizen.
Granoff is President, CEO and Founder of Pomona Capital, a venture capital group.
Granoff is also one of the 19 members of the Goldman Sachs-Robert Rubin funded Hamilton Project.

Liddy was, until recently, the CEO of AIG which, during the Obama administration, was essentially taken over by the government. He served in high positions at Goldman Sachs including : Board Member (Chairman, 1990-94; Director, 2003-2008). He was picked to the Goldman board by none other than Hank Paulson, former head of Goldman Sachs who was Bush’s Treasury Secretary who with Obama’s Treasury Secretary (Geithner) fashioned TARP.
Wikipedia reports:
Liddy garnered national headlines in October 2008 for defending a controversial $440,000 AIG retreat for top-performing insurance salesmen at the luxury St. Regis Resort in Monarch Beach, California. The retreat, which was held shortly after the U.S. government rescued AIG from insolvency with $84 billion in loans, included $200,000 for rooms, $150,000 for meals and $23,000 for the spa. In testimony before the U.S. House Oversight Committee, Liddy stated that such retreats "are standard practice in our industry."[11] During the U.S. presidential debate on October 7, 2008, Democratic presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama mentioned the retreat and said, "The Treasury should demand that money back and those executives should be fired."[12]
But that’s not what happened. Instead, Barack Obama as President kept Mr. Liddy on while AIG was essentially in receivership under the Obama administration.
How about this for a conflict of interest, again as reported by Wikipedia:
Liddy owns 27,129 shares in Goldman Sachs, at the time worth just over $3 million.[18] In April 2009 members of Congress called for Liddy to sell these shares, as they create a conflict of interest due to Goldman Sachs’ receipt of bailout money.[19] About two-thirds of Liddy’s holding is restricted and cannot be sold until May 31.[18]
Liddy announced on May 21, 2009 that he would resign as AIG Chairman and CEO when replacements were found, suggesting that the two roles be split.[20] Liddy was not paid for his time at AIG.[21] On August 3, 2009, Robert Benmosche was named President and CEO of AIG.[7]
Niederauer is CEO of the New York Stock Exchange. While a private entity, it is heavily regulated by the government and has close government ties. Niederauer, for instance, is a frequent speaker at Federal Reserve events:
New York Stock Exchange Euronext CEO Duncan L. Niederauer delivered the keynote address today at the fourth annual global summit on financial literacy hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago and Visa Inc.
He has an extensive Goldman Sachs background:
He joined NYSE Group following a 22-year career at Goldman Sachs. He served as a Managing Director of Goldman Sachs since 1997 and was responsible for U.S. cash equities operations, including Institutional and Member Firm Client Group sales and client services for … both the New York Stock Exchange and NYSE Arca. Mr. Niederauer was previously a Partner at The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (United States) ("GS") where he held many positions.
Perry is an Obama supporter, adviser and fund raiser. He worked for Goldman Sachs and is on the Goldman Sachs’funded, Hamilton Project’s Advisory Council. He is also CEO of Perry Capital, a hedge fund. Perry owns the full floor penthouse at 1 Sutton Place in NYC and according to the Washington Examiner is one of 15 " fat cat Wall St. Banker" friends of Obama. These are the same "fat cats" that Obama sometimes flails out at in the press to pretend he’s a populist!

Shafran served as an advisor/aide to Timothy Geithner especially on TARP. All of the advisers on that appear in a very murky fashion. And Shafran, like a lot of other TARP advisers, has extensive ties to Goldman as a executive for years. He’s especially shadowy, however. Here’s a link about him from CBS News.

John Thain has served as an adviser to Timothy Geithner. Thain was President and Chief Operating Officer of Goldman Sachs from 1999 to 2003.

An economic adviser to President Obama. Tyson is a Hamilton Project Advisory Council Member. The Hamilton Project as noted above was founded by Bob Rubin and Goldman Sachs and has close links to Obama personally.

This lists compiles the names above and those in the prior diary on this. For more detail on names not annotated in this diary, see the earlier diary linked here):
CRAIG, GREGORY. (revolving door)
FROMAN, Michael.
GREENSTONE, MICHAEL (revolving door to Hamilton Project)
1. Greg Gordon (McClatchy Newspapers), "Goldman’s White House Connections Raise Eyebrows" April 21, 2010.
2. Fflambeau, "With the Obama Administration Infested With Goldman Sachs People, How Real is the Obama/Democratic Attack on Big Banks" FDL Diary, April 21, 2010.
3. "More Investigations of Goldman Sachs, A Double-Edge Swords for Obama and Democrats"
4. Paul Street’s article showing that Obama held corporatist ideas long before elected and his indebtedness to the interests of big business.
5. Matthew Skomarovsky, "Obama Packs Debt Commission with Social Security Looters", March 28, 2010 at Alternet.
6. Fflambeau, "A List of Goldman Sachs People in the Obama Administration: Names Attached to the Giant Squid’s Tentacles"

1. Kirk James Murphy, M.D. "The Hamilton Project: Same Corporatist Whine In New DLC Vessels." THE seminal article on the Hamilton Project which also features a video clip of then Senator Barack Obama talking about "my friend, Bob [Rubin]" and espousing cuts in entitlements and the "need" for more free trade pacts like NAFTA.
2. Fflambeau, "Obama’s ‘Smoking Gun’: His Hamilton Project Speech Shows His Links to Goldman, Entitlement Cuts, Part 1.
3. Fflambeau, "Obama’s ‘Smoking Gun’: His Hamilton Project Speech Shows His Links to Goldman, Entitlement Cuts, Part 2".
4. Another source for Obama’s Hamilton Project speech of April 2006. Contains video clip.
5. James Kirk Murphy, M.D., "Remember the Hamilton Project?" Dr. Murph’s latest look at the Hamilton Project.
6. David Sirota, "Wall Street Democrats Unveil Plan to Undermine Progressives", April 5, 2006.

Source: Firedog Lake

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Senate Dems Vote Down GOP Plan To Reform Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac As Their Sacred Cows Ask For $19 Billion More In Taxpayer Funds

SEN. MARK WARNER (D-VA) YESTERDAY: “I Think It’s A Fair Claim To Make That We Haven’t Done Enough To Fully Address Fannie And Freddie. It Is The Big Elephant In The Room That Hasn’t Been Addressed.” (CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” 5/10/10)

Senate Democrats Like Michael Bennet (CO), Barbara Boxer (CA), Kirsten Gillibrand (NY), Blanche Lincoln (AR), Patty Murray (WA), Harry Reid (NV) And Arlen Specter (PA) Just Killed GOP Plan That Would Have Ended Taxpayer Bailouts Of Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac. (S. 3217, S. Amdt. 3839, Roll Call Vote #139, Rejected 43-56, R: 41-0, D: 2-54, I: 0-2, 5/11/10)
  • That Means Obama-Dodd Financial Regulation Bill Leaves Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac “Untouched.”Home lending giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be left untouched for now by financial reform legislation, Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) said Tuesday. Corker, a member of the Senate Banking Committee who’s been a lead Republican negotiator on a financial reform bill, said that the legislation under consideration wouldn’t deal with the two government-administered companies, but that lawmakers hope to revisit regulation of the companies soon. ‘I would have liked to have seen the Fannie and Freddie reforms in this bill,’ Corker said during an appearance on CNBC. ‘They’re not going to be in this bill.’” (Michael O’Brien, “Corker: Fannie And Freddie Left Out Of Financial Reform Bill,” The Hill’s “Blog Briefing Room,” 3/9/10)
Senate Dems Choose To Keep Fannie, Freddie Under Government Ownership, Which CBO Says Will Cost Taxpayers $389 Billion Over The Next Decade. “The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the total drain on taxpayers from bailing out Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae will be $389 billion through 2019.” (Jia Lynn Yang, “Freddie Mac Asks U.S. For $10 Billion As Losses Pile Up,” The Washington Post, 5/6/10)
  • Fannie And Freddie Will Likely “Be The Most Expensive Legacy” Of The Financial Crisis. “Fannie Mae asked the U.S. government for an additional $8.4 billion in aid after posting an $11.5 billion net loss for the first quarter, the latest sign that the bailout of the mortgage investor and its main rival, Freddie Mac, is likely to be the most expensive legacy of the U.S. housing-market bust.” (Nick Timiraos, “Fannie Mae Needs $8.4 Million More,” The Wall Street Journal, 5/11/10)
President Bill Clinton Admitted His Policies Regarding Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Paved Way For Current Financial Crisis. “Clinton ... said that Democrats weren’t entirely blameless, stating that they should have highlighted problems with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and ‘tried more aggressively to regulate derivatives.’ He also acknowledged that there was possible danger in his administration’s policy of pressing Fannie Mae, the mortgage company, to lower its credit standards for lower- and middle-income families seeking homes. ‘I think, through the lens of this, it looks like that was true,’ Clinton said.” (Walter Alarkon, "Clinton Rejects Blame For Financial Crisis," The Hill, 9/25/08)
  • And Says That Blame For Crisis Rests With Democrats And His Administration For Resisting GOP Efforts To Reform Fannie And Freddie.  “I think the responsibility that the Democrats have may rest more in resisting any efforts by Republicans in the Congress, or by me when I was President, to put some standards and tighten up a little on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.” (Seth Colter Walls, “McCain Ad Uses President Clinton To Bash Democrats,” The Huffington Post, 10/31/08)
Fannie Mae Asks For $8.4 Billion In Taxpayer-Funded Bailouts This Year, After Already Receiving $84.6 Billion In Bailout Funds. “Fannie Mae, the largest U.S. residential mortgage funds provider, on Monday asked the government for an additional $8.4 billion after the company lost $13.1 billion in the first quarter. Including the latest request, Fannie Mae will have received more than $84.6 billion from the government, and the firm said it saw no end in sight to federal assistance.” (Corbett B. Daly and Lynn Adler, “Fannie Mae Seeks $8.4 Billion From Government After Loss,” ABC News, 5/11/10)
  •  And Freddie Mac Asks For $10.6 Billion Taxpayer-Funded Bailouts This Year, After Already Receiving $50.7 Billion In Bailout Funds, Totaling $19 Billion In Requested Money Between Two Housing Giants. “Since taking over Freddie, the government has provided $50.7 billion in help to the company. This new request for funds from the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which regulates Freddie and Fannie, would push that total to $61.3 billion.” (Jia Lynn Yang, “Freddie Mac Asks U.S. For $10 Billion As Losses Pile Up,” The Washington Post, 5/6/10)
NYU Finance Professor Says “It’s Outrageous” That Reform Of Fannie Mae And Freddie Mac Not Included In Obama-Dodd Bill. “Lawrence J. White, a finance professor at New York University, said it made no sense to overhaul financial regulation without addressing the future of federal housing policy. He said he was trying to find the strongest possible words to describe the omission of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from the legislation. ‘It’s outrageous,’ he finally said.” (Binyamin Appelbaum and Sewell Chan, “Senate Financial Bill Misguided, Some Academics Say,” The New York Times, 5/3/10)
  • And Joined Republicans Who Have “Repeatedly Criticized The Administration For Advancing Legislation That Does Not Address” Fannie And Freddie. “A second group of critics say the government helped to seed the crisis through its efforts to increase home ownership, including the role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in buying mortgage loans to make more money available for lending … Republicans have repeatedly criticized the administration for advancing legislation that does not address the companies’ future.” (Binyamin Appelbaum and Sewell Chan, “Senate Financial Bill Misguided, Some Academics Say,” The New York Times, 5/3/10)

Monday, May 3, 2010

New Zeal: Obama File 102 America's Little Lenin? Joel Rogers and the Obama Movement.

American Capitalism Gone With a Whimper

Stanislav Mishin is a Russian Blogger. It is interesting to see how those across the pond view the state of our country. It is even more disturbing to see how on target he is with his evaluation of what is taking place in our country and how Barack Obama is destroying it from within.

American Capitalism Gone With a Whimper

Sunday, May 2, 2010


Hopefully, this will go down as the biggest scam in history and these criminals will go to jail. To learn more about CCX, here is a link to their website: The scam was to get cap and trade passed so President Obama's closest criminal friends would make millions of dollars at the average citizens expense. (At this time I'm not sure if POTUS still has a financial stake but I would presume the answer is yes) Glenn Beck aired his show about these criminals on Monday, April 26th. Shortly after the airing of the show, the stock prices plummeted for CCX and by Friday, April 30th, CCX sold out to Intercontinental Exchange. I pray that there will be a thorough investigation into all of these participants and companies/organizations they are tied to.

CCX Scandal Chart by Michele Austin

Deepwater Horizon Drilling Rig Accident

Deepwater Horizon Drilling Rig Accident

Advice To The Tea Parties

Cato Institute released a video of John Samples, director of its Center for Representative Government, offering some sound advice to tea partiers and how they can sustain a limited government movement.

His points are well-taken and most, if not all, fit in with the findings of our The Early Adopters study: a healthy skepticism towards Republicans; focusing on the taxes and spending; setting aside social issues. These are all points our report, which surveyed tea party leaders from across the nation, confirms.
Be sure to check out both, video and survey!

Source: Sam Adams Alliance