Bob Higgins

Making Heads or Tails out of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

Posted in Politics by Bob Higgins on September 7, 2008

“Mortgage Giant Overstated the Size of Its Capital Base,” reads the headline of this morning’s New York Times.

The headline tops a story by NYT writers Gretchen Morgenson and Charles Duhigg which, like so many articles on finance, quickly leaves me floundering in a murky wake of economic jargon, acronyms, and boardroom corporatese.

I understand the gist of what I read, though I would have opted for a different headline, something along the lines of “CEOs and CFOs of Major American Financial Companies Lie to Regulators, Shareholders and Public, Throw Markets into Chaos, Cost Taxpayers Tens of Billions.”

I am I admit on medication.

I realize that writers and reporters seldom write the headlines that lead their stories and shouldn’t be held to account for them. That duty is performed by headline writers under the supervision of editors who are answerable to the corporate structure and its advertisers.

Writers pen their stories under the same supervision and are answerable to the same powers and advertisers, hence we get stories which fail to state the case clearly, as does my substitute headline.

I am not currently working in the “news biz.”


Republicans: Seeing the World through Crooked Glasses

Posted in Politics by Bob Higgins on June 12, 2008

It is, or should be by now, plainly evident to most observers that the current crop of Republicans will run the kind of Rovian sleazoid campaign that has worked so well for them in the past.

They will co opt the message of the Democrats at every opportunity and “swift boat” anyone who gets in their way. They will, as in the past, use the politics of personal destruction, of sneer and smear, a style that has become a necessity in modern Republican strategy as it so purely reflects the mentality and ethos of a sizable and increasing fraction of their base.

The party that has come to reflect the endemic racism, sexism, religious intolerance, and the rapidly widening schism between economic classes in this country has nowhere else to turn. They have become directors of a noisy, and potentially dangerous lynch mob. A criminal mob acting to serve the interests of an out of control business culture and an irrational priesthood that sees the face of God in its own self righteousness.


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Bill Moyers, Cleaning Up Washington

Posted in Politics by Bob Higgins on June 5, 2007

Born on this day in 1934

America’s corporate and political elites now form a regime of their own, they’re privatizing democracy. All the benefits, the tax cuts, policies and rewards flow in one direction: up.
Bill Moyers

I happened to be reading Moyer’s Blog early this morning looking for his interview with Public Citizen’s Joan Claybrook which I missed when it aired on PBS last Friday on “Bill Moyers Journal.”

The subject of the segment was lobbying and lobbyists and their pervasive influence on our political system.

I have a large measure of respect for both Moyers and Claybrook and an enormous loathing for lobbyists and their destructive influence on MY country and I was disappointed to have missed the program.

Fortunately for me I learned from Karl Rove that Al Gore invented the internet a few years back, and that invention led to the discovery of You Tube where I found a clip of the segment and I feel very good about the modern world this morning.

If you are at all interested, as you should be, in the machinations and corruptions of our polical system by the Bob Neys, the Jack Abramoffs, the Billy Tauzins and other disreputable and criminal scum who infest our government and engage in buying and selling it these days I recommend that you watch the video.

Coincidentally, it seems like an appropriate time to once again ponder the the corruption in our government and to seriously consider, again, again… doing something to put an end to the revolving doors and corrupt and unethical congressional behavior, after yesterday’s indictment of another sitting congressman (Louisiana’s own William Jefferson .. hmmm… Billy Tauzin was from Louisiana too) on bribery and racketeering charges.


Pinochet y Bush, Class Warfare in Chile y Ohio

Posted in Politics by Bob Higgins on December 17, 2006

With the possible exception of Barry Goldwater for whom I have have always had a somewhat grudging admiration and a few others, perhaps John McCain before he developed a taste for the flavor of George Bush’s ass and decided that performing oral sex on Jerry Falwell, indeed the entire religious right was a natural rite of passage on the road to earning the Presidency, Republicanism has always been abhorrent to me.

My animus toward the GOP probably began during my early residence in the womb of a Mother who was a Democrat, a long time member of the UAW and the daughter of hard scrabble Sicilian Democrats from Connecticut as well as exposure to Willie Higgins my paternal grandfather who was a printer, a pressman and a lifelong Democrat. (except for the part about FDR sending his son to fight a war in Europe. Willie loved Harry Truman, but hated FDR, there may be a lesson about war or public relations or whose ox is being gored in there somewhere.)

Anyway, I came by my liberal passions early and honestly and before the end of elementary school had begun to feel a strong disdain for Hamilton and all he represented and a deep affinity for Jefferson and what I saw as the enlightened, egalitarian ideals of a more liberal political philosophy.

With this background it should be quite understandable that the October election was celebrated around my house as “the night of the living Democrats” and great sighs of relief were breathed over the weighing of the Republican anchor on the Ship of State which contains our mutual American asses.

However, it seems that my smug satisfaction with the coming Democratic majority was somewhat immoderate and premature because those Republican bastards are lame ducking the hell out of the country before the Democrats take office.