Nancy Pelosi endorses Mike Capuano for US Senate (vote Dec 8)

Today, U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced that she endorses Congressman Mike Capuano in his candidacy to replace Edward Kennedy as the next Senator from Massachusetts.

"Mike’s proven record of accomplishment in the House is clear evidence that he will be an outstanding advocate for the people of Massachusetts in the tradition of the late Senator Kennedy.

"I know Mike Capuano as someone who always finds a way to make progress regardless of the issue, which is why I selected him to serve in key roles on my leadership team. Whether overseeing the transition as the Democrats prepared to serve in the majority or working with Republican members on ethics reform, Mike always finished the job and got results.

"Saturday, the House of Representatives passed a historic health care bill that was a great victory for the American People. Mike Capuano not only cast a courageous vote for this historic legislation, but was a constructive force in improving this bill and moving it to the Senate. Whether taking on the CEOs of the financial services industry, supporting marriage equality, or voting against the Iraq War because he didn’t believe the Bush Administration made the case to take military action, Mike Capuano has a proven record of standing up for progressive values and what he believes is right. I am proud to endorse Mike Capuano for U.S. Senate,” said Speaker Pelosi.

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      The Kiss of Death

      By on

      One more reason not to vote for him - two peas in a pod - government should control everything and give it all away and the rich should pay for it. Except they neglect to consider that societies that have tried that don't have many rich people.

      The alternative?

      By on

      What's the alternative? "No government, everyone do what they want"? Yeah, that worked out really well on Wall Street...for Wall Street. "Tax everyone the same"? Someone on the edge of solvency is going to have a much harder time coming up with 5% for taxes than someone 3 sigmas above the mean.

      The uber-rich 1% have basically raped our economy to their benefit and the rest of our bankruptcy. We can ride our "economic freedoms" into the crapper by letting them sit on their castles of money while the other 90% of us rot on the vine or we can try to regain some normalcy by having the billionaires bankroll *us* for a change.

      This isn't a permanent change, but it's a damn sight better idea than what we've been doing for the past 40 years. Our wealth distribution is not only unhealthy for our economy, but it's unhealthy for our republic. Dollars are concentrated enough to buy enough faction in Congress to bring the doomsday scenarios imagined by Hamilton in the Federalist Papers #10 to life. We've basically ignored the lessons that our forefathers have tried to lay out for us in giving us a democratic republic. Hell, even our democracy is broken because we don't have an educated electorate thanks to underfunded schools; underfunded because they don't "turn a profit" like our hospitals, prisons, and utilities have become required to do these days to survive.

      So, yeah, the only one with any money (because they can print it...for now) AND who's spending it to keep our country's economy alive is The Government (oooo! scary!). The rest of the people with any money (because they've stolen it all...for now) are "panicking" and waiting for a more prudent time to *invest* themselves!

      Pelosi is a hack and needs to be replaced, but I don't see her endorsement as a taint against Capuano as much as I see it a shock that she didn't back the "strong female candidate" in Coakley.


      And now we wait ...

      ... to hear the entertaining Therese Murray meltdown screed about how her favored female can't possibly be less qualified than somebody who is more qualified and how Pelosi is a gender traitor and old boy or some such in 1... 2... 3...


      six time US Congressmen

      Mike Capauano is a six time US Congressmen who has served 11 years in national office. Martha Coakley has been in state-wide office for less than 3, and county office for 8 years before that.

      From the word "go" Martha's she's been playing up the "first female from MA in the US Senate" angle. This endorsement from Pelosi for Capuano definitely has to sting.

      Coakley supporters think nothing of trashing Pelosi, the first female speaker of the house, because Pelosi didn't choose to endorse their candidate.

      think gender and stature not geography

      Having Nancy Pelosi (who is a woman) endorse you instead of your female opponent says something. Pelosi is known for supporting women in positions of leadership and higher government. It's kind of her thing. In this case, she choose Capuano over Coakley.

      Plus Pelosi is national leader with a special qualification, the first female speaker of the US House of representatives, which makes her third in line to the Presidency.

      You know Barack Obama doesn't live in Massachusetts either but people still seem to pay attention to his judgment in spite of his place of residents.

      But you're right about Bloomberg, he's just a mayor of a rival city. YANKEES SUCK.

      Populist Bullcrap

      By on

      Blame it on the rich - and of course George Bush.

      Wall Street - give me a break - it's the most regulated business in the world after the medical profession. The system broke because government is clueless. Unfortunately people like Fank and Capuano write all kinds of rules - and the banks obeyed them. The problem wasn't lack of regulation or even enforcement - the problem was that government was too busy regulating the wrong things (and in the case of AIG for example - most of the problems were occurring in London where American law is meaningless). The economy went south because too many dumbass Americans bought houses they couldn't afford with financial products they didn't understand. It's like blaming the car manufacturer for the accident you caused by driving 100 mph on the Jamaicaway (I know - the gas pedal was stuck - blame it on the manufacturer).

      The uber-rich raped the economy? Other than criminal activity like Madoff - can you give me some concrete examples of uberrich raping the economy (Buffett, Gates, Jobs, Trump etc.). Last time I checked these people employed tens of thousands of people. Would you prefer they moved to Bermuda, Singapore or some other tax haven? Most of those loans were sold by incompetent mortgage brokers moonlighting from their pizza delivery jobs (true story).

      Other 90%? - last time I checked the vast majority of congress (enjoying probably the best health benefits in the country) qualified for the top 10%. I can tell you from personal experience that most of the rules are written for them and their rich friends (but like Capuano when they run for election they rant on about being on the side of the little guy - total crap).

      50% of Americans pay no income taxes - the top 10% already do bankroll the rest of America.

      Underfunded schools; underfunded because they don't "turn a profit" like our hospitals, prisons, and utilities

      Gotta love this one -underfunded schools - is that the Boston schools that spend over $20k per student annually or Newton building the $200 million high school?

      Sorry Kaz - it's a nice story to try and blame it on Wall Street, rich people and GWB - but the real blame rests with the 90% of people looking for more handouts from the government. (go ahead and tax the crap out of them - check with Governor Paterson in NY how that plan is working out).

      You mean like this one?

      "The system broke because government is clueless."

      The GOP keeps the message simple and dullards lap it up.

      What's hilarious is that Stevil is willing to defend an unregulated "free market" boom and bust economy that will cost him and kids dearly but will work out quite well for the top 1%, cause "free market" sounds like "freedom" and that's what we're all about.

      Has Stevil said he listens to Rush or is that just a guess? I'd be interested what information sources he uses. I presume some of the are online. Alex Jones? WorldNet? RedState?

      I could have sworn....

      ...someone here recently linked to WorldNet -- as if it were a legitimate news source. But I can't recall who.

      I just assume Stevil listens lots to Limbaugh (and others of that ilk) because he parrots back so much that sounds like this sort of stuff. Not at all the sort of thoughtful hard-core (genuine) libertarian stuff like our UHub colleague Sul (Thanksgiving before Christmas) Dog. ;~}

      Rush is a blowhard

      By on

      Sources - I read the Globe, the Herald, WSJ, Businessweek, CNN, MSN Money, religiously every day/weeek plus professional magazines. Listen almost exclusively to WBZ radio. Also watch CNN and CNBC for my news/business news - hate Fox, hate MSNBC - never watch either unless I need a laugh.

      I work in finance and I see the crap that the government puts out - most of it is simple administrative BS (want an example - ever read a prospectus for a security - read it carefully - there's always a "catch all" phrase that says within some minimal level of reason - "oh yeah - and we might do a lot of other stuff that's not in here"). I wouldn't say it's useless - but it's there more to protect the issuer than the investor - although putting it out costs a lot of money so the investor takes it in the shorts. One of my favorites - almost nobody in finance has a fiduciary duty to do what's in your best interest - it's not like dealing with a doctor, lawyer or accountant. Most brokers, bankers,mortgage vendors insurance people are legally permitted to sell you virtually anything as long as it's "suitable and appropriate" and you don't "churn" - very wide latitude to take advantage of people's trust (you should see the crap that comes across my desk). For the record - I have both legal and ethical fiduciary duty to my clients based on my legal standing in the industry and my professional designations.

      As for "the government is clueless" that's a bipartisan stance - see your link that someone was sounding the alarm back in the 90's and whether you want to fault Clinton, Frank or Bush or everyone in between, they all knew what was going on and had YEARS to put in appropriate regulation but didn't. There are ample tapes of hearings that are clear evidence Washington was well aware of the problems and didn't appreciate or want to appreciate the risks.

      This wasn't about unregulated "free market" boom (that's part of the populist bullcrap) - the failure was they regulated all kinds of things that had no real purpose other than bureaucracy- and left the dangerous stuff alone (and a lot of it would have been almost impossible to regulate anyway in a global marketplace - make it illegal here and they set up shop elsewhere where it is legal)

      Bottom line - this wasn't about an unregulated market - it was about human nature and an improperly regulated market - everybody thought they could make lots of money with very little risk - this wasn't deliberate - but when everybody crowded onto the same side of the bus, it almost tipped over when we went into the curve. Simplifying - but all government had to do was tell the driver not to let everyone stand on the same side of the bus - they didn't and now we are paying the price. (a lot of hedge funds took the opposite bet to the banks and their investors are VERY happy indeed)

      Need evidence business was playing by the rules, with a few exceptions like Madoff, where are all the indictments?

      capitalism depends on justice

      You are expecting people to make financial decisions based on information they could never have. The average mortage holder, in fact no mortage holder, can be expected to know when the Federal Reserve Board will decide to raise interest rates 5%.

      So the holders of an ARM are hit with high rates which have nothing to do with their lives. In addition subprime mortgage holders, who are probably the most marginal employees, lose their jobs because of the high rates. In fact that's why the Fed raised them!

      So the Fed and the governors board, all made up of the richest people in America, make money playing the highs and lows of these government actions, while most workers are screwed. That's how the uber-rich make more money in these times by screwing the middle class.

      The justice relationship is between the political appointees of the SEC and the administration officials and senators who sponsor them. Christopher Cox was in the bag for the big banks and so never investigated anything. The Democrats are not so different so far.

      Uh, yeah

      By on

      There's so many FACTS wrong with what you just said that it's just plain baffled me.

      But I will take one very obvious exception to your rant of stupidity: I didn't bring up GWB at all. So, I'm not going to address any of your other nonsense until you stop attributing your own garbage to me.

      It's pretty clear that you just want to talk past me if you're just going to imagine what I said instead.

      Swipe at Capuano -not you

      By on

      I was on a campaign conference call with Caps - he cited GWB on virtually every issue. Saw him on a commercial last night - whatever issue he was talking about he blamed GWB. Intended as a bit of humor.

      Back to the point - so what is wrong with my facts?

      Fat cat bullcrap

      Sorry, Stevil- responsibility for making bad loans lies just as much with mortgage writers and the banks. Whenever I loan someone money, I have to make a calculation as to how likely it is that they'll pay me back. There are people to whom I never lend money because they've burned me before. Banks benefit from a sophisticated credit scoring system that is supposed to assist them in this endeavor. An income review I'd another tool at their disposal. If they include fine print that will change the monthly payments down the road, and somebody whose income can't sustain the increase defaults, that's as much the fault of the bank as the borrower. If you loan money to enough "dumbasses", you're a dumbass yourself and shouldn't expect any help from daddy government. Banks and others made stupid, greedy decisions- decisions that were bad for business and bad for the country. Although you might advocate for a return to the days of "debtor's prison" and indentured servitude, those options do not appear to be currently on the table, perhaps because of our country's populist leanings. So unfortunately, the worst that will happen to these dumbasses is they lose their homes and their hopes of ever buying another house are ruined. At least that's a consequence, though. Your friends in finance and banking (besides Madoff and a few others) seem to have generally avoided consequence for their errors. It's merely a cycle for them- and rest assured this kind of thing will happen again.

      Old School

      By on

      Dan - that was all great - when that was how the system worked. Unfortunately that's not how mortgages work anymore - this is how it works:

      Local bank sells a mortgage - often accepting information on the loan application at face value - why?
      They sell the loan to a big bank in NY (or the government - Fannie and Freddie) and could care less if it gets paid back.

      Fannie and Freddie hold onto their loans. Bank in NY slices and dices the loan into all kinds of little pieces and sells off most of the pieces - they could care less if the loan doesn't get paid back - plus the ratings agencies told them the risk was well diversified so most of the pieces have little risk. (the banks could have hedged the downside for what they still owned - but they were making money on the interest arbitrage and so they didn't - after all the ratings agencies said these were low risk - why hedge? It was a business decision and the government was mum on the issue - again the system was HIGHLY regulated - not PROPERLY regulated)

      Individual investors are told the pieces they bought have little risk - so they pay a lot for these little pieces (and in the end pay the ultimate price for the errors of many others - but they don't have the buying power to take down the economy).

      The system grows and grows, and like a plane going higher and higher, it eventually stalls - unfortunately the big banks still had a lot of unhedged loans on their books - so when the customer, who could never afford the loan in the first place stops paying- which the big bank in NY had no way of knowing because all their sources told them it was fine - yadda, yadda, yadda - domino effect (throw in some credit default swaps for good measure) and here we are today - still on the edge but creeping back.

      I don't blame the bankers - this was thousands of banks and small companies with hundreds of thousands of employees all doing their part within the bounds of the law within the system created by (drumroll) THE GOVERNMENT. The Treasury and Fed were the only ones with the 30,000 foot view to see what everyone was doing and there were enough people beating the warning drum that they should have put a stop to it - putting a stop to Alt A loans, reining in Fannie and Freddie, raising interest rates (too little too late), having risk exposure/hedging mandates etc.

      Our government - the one we elected - let this happen with ample warning and didn't stop it when they could. And now they are using the bully pulpit to blame it on Wall Street (part of the price to get paid the big bucks is you have to be the whipping boy every 10-15 years for the mistakes in DC). This was a systemic failure and government was the only player in the game with the power to stop it - but Barney Frank (and many in the Bush administration, and others in the prior Republican Congress and to an extent perhaps Clinton before him) are the primary culprits in what happened.

      Government is clueles - perhaps deliberately.

      mortgages are not risky

      Mortgages were the safest investment in the world.

      People lost their homes mostly because they lost their jobs. They lost their jobs because the Fed raised rates to raise unemployment.


      Quite the post. There isn't one true statement in the whole thing.


      Half the problem

      By on

      Is that a huge majority of the population thinks stuff like EM's posts are true -it's all a big conspiracy (hard to jive when people like Warren Buffett, Soros, Kerkorian, Trump and others take a hard one to the chin - as they all have done. Even our own John Henry's formerly almost infallible hedge fund company has found it difficult to navigate the market ups and downs of the past 5 years).

      I will make a slight semantic adjustment to my opinion - were the bankers to blame - yes - just as much as the buyers that bought homes they couldn't afford and brokers that sold mortgages that couldn't get paid back and the government that failed on so many levels. But I still claim the only layer of the food chain that was "AT FAULT" was the government - they were the only ones a) paid to prevent the crisis and b) with the power to do so. They failed us but sadly almost every one of them will escape unscathed - i.e. - get re-elected.

      Andrew Sorkin, NYT reporter and author of "Too big to Fail" -the first, though certainly not last, thorough review of the crisis - pretty much shares this opinion - he says everyone is to blame or nobody is to blame- arrest them all or arrest no one. There was hubris throughout the system. Everybody thought the other guy was doing his job and nobody questioned the assumptions that now look ridiculous. Unfortunately, each component of the system was accountable only to itself - and thus in the end nobody was accountable to anyone.

      2/3 of subprime foreclosures were due to lost jobs

      2/3 of the subprime foreclosures were due to lost jobs. Subprime borrowers are the most marginal employees, the most likely to be kicked off the payroll first when rates go from 1% to 5%.

      THAT'S WHY THEY RAISE THE RATES. To raise unemployment. That's textbook, guys. In a world of transparent government, the Fed would have a big banner on it saying "Mission Accomplished".

      You think the recession started when it hit you --- in fact it was going on for years before that, except it was happening to poor people under your radar.

      By absolving the people who made this happen, you are raising the white flag, giving in to an even heavier occupation of the Commanding Heights by the elite in service to the elite. You are excusing a system where the super-educated/super-connected are empowered to make decisions for the rest of us, usually to squelch our basic desires for societal growth and honestly won wealth.

      where are you getting these numbers from?

      By on

      i have found no evidence to support the statement that 2/3 of the subprime foreclosures were due to unemployment. and in fact, there seems to be a general consensus among researchers that the current housing crisis actually developed independently of job loss problems (although it certainly compounded things later).

      you can see, for example, the interim report to congress from HUD, which has some really interesting research on unemployment and the housing crisis.

      so i'm curious where you are getting your statistics from?

      dear doubters: subprime foreclosures from unemployment

      Oh ye of little faith... why do you doubt me? Is it so much more comforting to believe that Americans lost the ability to repay home loans, something they have been able to do for 100 years?

      This is confirmed in recent analysis by Standard & Poor’s chief economist David Wyss, who reported last week that payroll and unemployment statistics are far more significant than interest rate resets in producing mortgage foreclosures. Wyss found that only 2% of mortgage foreclosures in 2007 were caused by interest rate resets under adjustable rate mortgages, according to data released by Countrywide Financial. Yet 60% of mortgage foreclosures were due to loss of jobs! Way to go, FOMC!

      Politicians, economists and pundits ought to think about that before announcing through the media that a lot of people took loans they couldn’t afford to repay, or that greedy mortgage lenders made loans to people they should have known were dead-beats. Try walking in the shoes of those who are pawns of U. S. monetary policy presently imposed by Fed central planners before jumping to such overbroad conclusions.


      First off

      By on

      You're both right. It just depends on when you're talking about.

      In 2007, the early pop of the housing bubble was mortgage payment failures due to balloon payments on subprime loans. Then as businesses couldn't get the money from panicking banks, jobs started disappearing and that caused more foreclosures later.

      for the record

      That's not what I'm saying. I think you're trying to rationalize a real study that I presented, and a generalized sentiment that everybody else has heard repeated in the media 100,000 times so they think it's true.

      I believe that people can do their jobs and pay off their debts if given the chance. Others may think that American greed and stupidity reached some sort of tipping point in 2004 which brought this on. We just disagree philosophically.

      No, you're ignoring reality

      By on

      No, you didn't present a real study. You presented an opinion blog that references what another guy said that claims to have been from an unnamed "report" that is not identifiable in any way that I can determine. BUT I'll say that I agree that more and more foreclosures were related to lost jobs. However, it's been pretty well established (no, not just because they keep saying it..but because the evidence is there for it to be said) that the start of this was people up to their necks in hock on their house with mortgages that never should have been approved, purely to keep the bubble alive and feeding the CDSs and other rigamaroll of the financial world that was getting great ratings by the ignorant/corrupt agencies.

      At the beginning of the burst, only a few soothsayers were expecting the fall to occur and nobody had been losing their jobs yet. Once it started and everything started tightening up, you saw the bubble burst compound the problem by causing the job losses that led to the continuation of foreclosures.

      Read the facts: Causes of the Subprime mortgage crisis. Notice that none of them are "job losses". Notice that the timelines are for well before the 2008 article that you quote about job losses.

      People were taking out ARMs that they could pay in the beginning but ballooned too fast for them to keep up. They were either unaware it was coming or planning on flipping the house by then...but the prices stabilized as too many houses built meant a washed out supply and lowered demand.

      I don't care what you believe, so long as you stop ignoring the facts. People were getting debts that they had no good reason to get and had no foreseeable way of paying them off. And actually, I'm starting to care less that you're constantly ignoring the I'm more willing to just tune you out.

      Capuano takes a poke at the competition

      "At the U.S. Senate? That’s where you begin your political career" Capuano asked incredulously


      Massachusetts voters would make a mistake if they sent Martha Coakley to the U.S. Senate instead of him, because he has a proven progressive political philosophy and a track record of delivering for the state.

      Coakley, the state’s attorney general, has been leading in polls as the Dec. 8 primary approaches.

      "We’re running for the U.S. Senate; we’re not running for U.S. attorney general,"

      Capuano: Electing Coakley senator would be mistake
      By Associated Press | Tuesday, November 17, 2009
      read more