A New Face

The Washington Times reported on Thursday that Kathy Kraninger has been confirmed as the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and will serve for the next five years.

The article concludes:

Meanwhile the CFPB is still facing major legal hurdles.

Some federal judges have ruled that by placing so much power — including an independent budget that Congress doesn’t control — in a single director, the CFPB violates the Constitution. But a ruling earlier this year by the full U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upheld the singe-director structure.

Let’s take a look at the inception of the CFPB. The CFPB is the brainchild of Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren. It was passed as part of the Dodd-Frank Act. The Dodd-Frank Act was Congress’ way of dealing with the housing bubble that caused the recession of 2008. However, the congressional solution was aimed at banks and Wall Street. It made no mention of the role that Congress had played in creating the housing crisis and made no effort to take responsibility for their actions or prevent a repeat of the problem.

In 1995 The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) was changed, allowing Fannie Mae to purchase $2 billion of “My Community Mortgage” Loans, pilot vendors to customize affordable products for low and moderate income borrowers. Some of the things done to make the loans more affordable were low (or no) down payments and variable interest rates. Fannie Mae guarantees mortgages and then sells them to banks and investors. Banks were forced to issue sub-prime mortgages or pay large penalties. As more people took out mortgages, the price of houses rose quickly.  In 2005, 91 percent of Fannie Mae loans were variable rate loans. In 2004, 92 percent of Fannie Mae subprime loans were variable rate loans. Interest rates rose, gas prices increased, and people could not pay their mortgages. The subprime market collapsed, and foreclosures increased rapidly. Banks stopped making mortgage loans.

There were efforts made to stop this train. On September 11, 2003, The New York Times reported:

Bush administration today recommended the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago.

…a new agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume supervision  on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored companies that are the two largest players in the mortgage lending industry.

The Democrats opposed the reform. Barney Frank, a Democrat from Massachusetts, said that it would mean less affordable housing. Melvin Watt, a Democrat from North Carolina, said that it would limit the ability of poor families to get affordable housing.

In 2005, John McCain warned of a coming mortgage collapse. He sponsored S.190 (109th), Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005. The Democrats blocked it. It was again brought up and blocked in 2007.

Opensecrets.org lists campaign contributions to politicians. Fannie Mae gave generously to insure that it would not be regulated. Some Democrats and Fannie Mae executives had ‘sweetheart’ loans from mortgage companies that were heavily involved in sub-prime mortgages.

So where am I going with this? The housing bubble was created by bad legislation. Bad legislation continues. In August 2016, The New York Post reported:

The Obama administration is doing its best to give the nation another mortgage meltdown.

As Paul Sperry recently noted in The Post, Team Obama has pushed mortgage lenders to offer home loans to folks with shaky credit, setting up conditions for another housing-market collapse.

Wasn’t the last one bad enough?

Credit scores of approved borrowers, for example, have been trending down, even as their debt levels have grown.

The Federal Housing Administration and government-sponsored “independent” lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have been demanding lower credit standards — just as the feds did starting under President Bill Clinton, in pursuit of the same “affordable housing” goal.

Some borrowers need only put 3 percent down to get a Fannie Mae loan — even if the downpayment is a gift. Fannie also has started up a new subprime lending program.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency recently warned that mortgage underwriting standards have slipped and now reflect “broad trends similar to those experienced from 2005 through 2007, before the most recent financial crisis.”

The Consumer Financial Protection Board (and Dodd-Frank) were not related to the cause of the 2008 recession–the recession was the result of bad laws. Both the CFPB and Dodd-Frank need to go away. They are nothing but a blatant example of government overreach.

Theoretically The Same Rules Should Apply To Everyone

As Robert Mueller begins to wind down his investigation (hopefully), it is not unreasonable to expect some effort by conservative news sources to discredit his work. However, in view of the people he chose to do his investigating and some of the tactics used, some discrediting may be in order.

The Gateway Pundit posted an article today stating the following:

A new report by journalist Paul Sperry says conflicted Robert Mueller withheld evidence from the court that would exonerate President Trump from the latest accusations of Russian collusion during the 2016 election.

Mueller withheld information to the court that would exonerate President Trump.
Will Mueller be tossed in prison for lying?
Or do only Trump associates got to jail for lying to the court?

In an article posted at Real Clear Investigations, Paul Sperry reported the following:

Contrary to media speculation that Robert Mueller is closing in on President Trump, the special prosecutor’s plea deal with Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen offers further evidence that the Trump campaign did not collude with Russians during the 2016 election, according to congressional investigators and former prosecutors.

Cohen pleaded guilty last week to making false statements in 2017 to the Senate intelligence committee about the Trump Organization’s failed efforts to build a Trump Tower in Moscow. Discussions about the so-called Moscow Project continued five months longer in 2016 than Cohen had initially stated under oath.

The nine-page charging document filed with the plea deal suggests that the special counsel is using the Moscow tower talks to connect Trump to Russia. But congressional investigators with House and Senate committees leading inquiries on the Russia question told RealClearInvestigations that it looks like Mueller withheld from the court details that would exonerate the president. They made this assessment in light of the charging document, known as a statement of “criminal information” (filed in lieu of an indictment when a defendant agrees to plead guilty); a fuller accounting of Cohen’s emails and text messages that Capitol Hill sources have seen; and the still-secret transcripts of closed-door testimony provided by a business associate of Cohen.

The article at Real Clear Investigations concludes:

Though Mueller has now, in his 18-month probe, nabbed several Trump associates for process crimes, such as making false statements, and other felonies, such as tax fraud, no evidence has surfaced in any of the cases indicating that Trump colluded with Russia to steal the 2016 election.

FBI agents raided Cohen’s office early this spring to seize evidence, and prosecutors have spent the last several months sifting through his emails, texts and phone and travel records, as well as audio recordings he allegedly made of conservations with Trump.

Notably absent from the criminal-information document is any corroboration of the highly inflammatory, though oft-cited allegation made in the so-called Steele dossier, funded by the Clinton campaign, that Cohen visited Prague to clandestinely meet with Kremlin officials in August 2016 to arrange “deniable cash payments to hackers who had worked in Europe under Kremlin direction against the Clinton campaign.”

Cohen has strenuously denied the allegation and offered his passport to show “I have never been to Prague in my life.”

The Mueller investigation is going to go down in history as one of the biggest financial boondoggles in American history. The really sad aspect of this is the unequal justice that is currently being applied. Hopefully that is about to change.

The Cost Of The Wall

One of the recent talking points used against those people who actually want to control our borders is the cost of building a wall. Obviously, Mexico will not directly pay for a wall–they enjoy having people come here illegally and send money back to Mexico. There is no incentive for them to put a stop to that behavior. So how do we pay for the wall?

Paul Sperry posted an article at The New York Post on Saturday that offers one possible solution.

The article reports:

Mexico won’t have to pay for the wall, after all. US taxpayers won’t have to pick up the tab, either. The controversial barrier, rather, will cover its own cost just by closing the border to illegal immigrants who tend to go on the federal dole.

That’s the finding of recent immigration studies showing the $18 billion wall President Trump plans to build along the southern border will pay for itself by curbing the importation of not only crime and drugs, but poverty.

“The wall could pay for itself even if it only modestly reduced illegal crossings and drug smuggling,” Steven A. Camarota, director of research at the Center for Immigration Studies, told The Post.

Federal data shows that a wall would work. A two-story corrugated metal fence in El Paso, Texas, first erected under the Bush administration has already curtailed illegal border crossings there by more than 89 percent over the five-year period during which it was built.

The problem is not only illegal immigrants–it’s drug smuggling. How much money and how many lives do the illegal drugs coming into America cost?

The article concludes:

While Democrats complain the $18 billion price tag for the Trump wall is too high, the “Dreamers” amnesty bill they want Trump and Republicans to pass in exchange for funding the wall (or ideally in spite of the wall) would cost US taxpayers even more than the construction of the border partition over 10 years.

“The cost of the DREAM Act has been estimated as very large — a $26 billion net cost in the first 10 years,” Camarota noted.

Indeed, the Congressional Budget Office recently estimated that 3 million DREAM Act recipients would receive an estimated $12 billion-plus in ObamaCare subsidies, more than $5.5 billion in Medicaid benefits, $5.5 billion in earned-income and child-tax credits and more than $2 billion in food stamps.

A bipartisan bill incorporating the deal was defeated in the Senate last month by a vote of 54-45. Trump rejected the proposal in favor of a tougher border bill introduced by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), which limits the number of DACA beneficiaries to 1.8 million, curbs family visas, or so-called chain migration, and phases out the diversity visa lottery, while earmarking $25 billion in funding for the wall and other border security.

The problem is not the money–the problem is the spending priorities.

The First Amendment Under Fire

The Center for Security Policy posted an article earlier this month about a court case in Washington, D. C., regarding the book, Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld that’s Conspiring to Islamize America. The book, published by Dave and Chris Gaubatz, is an exposé on CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations).

The article tells the story of the book:

In 2008, Dave Gaubatz, an experienced federal investigator, was hired as an independent contractor to assist with a field research documentary.  As part of this research, Dave Gaubatz trained his son, Chris Gaubatz, to work undercover as an intern with CAIR, which required Chris to wear an audio-video recorder on his clothing to obtain recordings of the routine activities of a CAIR intern.  During this internship, it became clear that both a major fraud occurred within the organization and that CAIR officials were attempting to cover it up.

Subsequently, Dave Gaubatz published a book entitled, Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld that’s Conspiring to Islamize America, which was an exposé on CAIR.  Shortly after the book was published, CAIR filed a lawsuit in federal court in Washington, D.C., against Dave and Chris Gaubatz.  CAIR then amended its lawsuit to add CSP (Center for Security Policy) and several of its employees, who were involved in the production of the documentary.  CAIR’s lawsuit alleges violations of various federal wiretap and hacking statutes as well as several common law torts, such as breach of fiduciary duty and trespass, among others.

CAIR has requested to extend the discovery period, which had been ongoing for over thirteen months in order to depose Mr. Paul Sperry, David Gaubatz’s co-author of the book, and World Net Daily, which published the book.

The Court denied CAIR’s motion, and will soon set a schedule for motions that could bring this case to a close by ruling in favor of Defendants and exposing CAIR as the center of a Muslim Brotherhood, mafia-like organization.

The thing to learn here is that CAIR (which promotes the introduction of Sharia Law into the American legal system) is not a benign organization. CAIR is well aware that Sharia Law is incompatible with democratic freedom and is working to end the freedom of Americans to speak freely. Under Sharia Law, anything that is unflattering to Islam or Mohammad is considered slander, whether or not it is true. Slander can be punishable by death. This is not something we want to enter America’s legal system.

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