K Street Remains the Fourth Branch of Government

Just goes to show how lobbying reform hasn't gone anywhere near far

Lobbyists Are Not Only Trying to Kill NEW Legislation, They Are Trying
to Weaken EXISTING Regulations

By George Washington of href="http://www.washingtonsblog.com/">Washington's Blog.

Everyone knows that the lobbyists for the financial giants are trying
to kill any tough new regulations.

But they are also trying to weaken existing regulations.

Specifically, Robert Borosage notes:

    The [derivatives] bill that the House will consider
on Wednesday creates a clearinghouse, not a publicly managed exchange.
It also allows banks to decide that a deal is so unique that it needn't
be posted on the clearinghouse. The best experts in the field -- like
Michael Greenberger of the University of Maryland -- warn that the
legislation might end up WEAKENING current law. That is no small
achievement, because, as we saw in the collapse of AIG, current law is

This version appeared on Naked
.  The full post has all the sausage-y details,
including a mention of the Democratic congressperson who is leading the
charge to weaken financial oversight, who happens to have gotten more
than two million dollars from the finance, insurance, and real estate
(FIRE) businesses and coalitions. 

style="display: inline;">i-dce6ef863237f7ecd891e4c9b3b59e5f-house_fsc_fire_contributions_2009-thumb-200x283-20821.png

Barry Ritholtz (The Big Picture) has more, just in case you're feeling
the need for
another kick in the head: href="http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2009/10/why-financial-reform-died-banks-run-congress/">Why
Financial Reform Died: "Banks Run Congress.  A groovy
interactive graphic, showing the same thing in greater detail, is at href="http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124396078596677535.html#articleTabs%3Dinteractive">WSJ.

Open Secrets tallies the FIRE lobbying expenditures and href="http://www.opensecrets.org/news/2009/02/tarp-recipients-paid-out-114-m.html">calculates
the return on the investment: 258,449 percent.

And to illustrate a perverse oddity: href="http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/10092009/watch.html">Simon
Johnson (Baseline Scenario) shows how the US Chamber of Commerce is
lobbying against the interest of its own membership: href="http://baselinescenario.com/2009/10/15/the-chamber-of-commerce-has-it-backwards/#more-5233">The
Chamber of Commerce Has It Backwards.

More like this

The health care reform process is getting extremely ugly.  href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/healthcare/la-na-healthcare-insurers24-2009aug24,0,6925890.story"> href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/healthcare/la-na-healthcare-insurers24-2009aug24,0,6925890.…
This magazine has stumbled upon an idea I've been advocating for years, that politicians should be like Nascar drivers and should have to wear the logos of all the companies that sponsor their campaigns. It should be all over their clothing and the cars they drive. Here's their mock up of what…
The reason the AIG bonuses are upsetting isn't the amount of the bonuses--although the bonuses are larger than the entire National Endowment for the Arts budget--it's the complete impotence of and cooptation of the government by the financial sector (yes, we need banks and a financial sector, but…
At this point, diversity in the Obama administration means you've never worked for Goldman Sachs. Meet the newest Obama nominee, Gary Gensler for head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (italics mine): Gensler helped create this financial crisis when he was in the Treasury Department back…