Republicans Not Serious If They Pick Bachus Over Royce


Spencer Bachus surveys the fallen world with eyes of death.

While Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), the most articulate critic of banking in American politics, is the only truly acceptable choice to become chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, the pending chairmanship of Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.) shows Republicans can't be trusted to deliver even on the mediocre promises of "art of the possible" politics.

Bachus is next in line to accede to the chair of Financial Services. This is the committee to which Federal Reserve Bank Chairman Ben Bernanke and wounded Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner testify when they can get away from their day jobs destroying capitalism.

Bachus, a pleasant non-entity in committee meetings, has become a non-interventionist-by-convenience during the Obama Administration. Here he is opposing the ARRA Stimulus not as a three-quarters-of-a-trillion-dollar money suck but because it fails to shovel enough pork into the barrels he prefers ("electrical grid" and nuclear energy).

There is nothing in Bachus' record that suggests he would make an effective Financial Services chairman. And there is one gigantic thing in his record that suggests his fellow Republicans should shave his belly with a rusty razor, put him in bed with the captain's daughter, and throw him in the longboat 'til he's sober.

Ed Royce rolls a winner!

Specifically Bachus voted for the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, the $700 billion down payment that made it possible for President Obama and the Democrats to create continuing trillions in new debt.

Remember that 67 House Republicans opposed President Bush and the scare tactics of ghoulish Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson during the 2008 political panic. Here's the roster, and in the No column you will find the names of congressbots who have gone on to do valuable opposition work in documenting the excesses of the Obama brain trust -- Mike Pence, Jeb Hensarling and Jeff Flake, to name a few.

Fortunately, one of those no-voters is challenging Bachus. Rep. Ed Royce (R-California) announced today that he wants to become chairman of the of Financial Services Committtee.

If Republican House leader John Boehner really wants to convince Tea Partiers he will never let them down, this choice is a no-brainer. Royce, a remunerated champion of the insurance industry, is by no means an ideal chairman. But the TARP vote draws a bright line between Republicans who are serious about reducing the size of government and those who are not. Boehner can't walk back his own vote for TARP, but by conspicuously rewarding a refusenik he can at least pay homage to virtue.

Royce explains why he was right to oppose the bailouts and support letting AIG fail:

Bachus boldly urges a "transition period" for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac:  

NEXT: Brickbats

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  1. I second the motion. The motion to appoint Ed Royce as chairman of the of Financial Services Committtee is now on the table.

  2. Bachus looks like he stepped out of the grave to take a piss.

  3. There's kind of a "moods of Liberace" thing in the pics there.
    We're fucked sequined.

  4. Holy crap, Royce represents my district.

    I find it disturbing to think he might not suck at something.

    1. Royce actually pushed pretty hard to significantly reform Fannie and Freddie in 2004 and 2005, pre-Crisis on Infinite Banks. Makes him better than those who have seen the light on that more recently.

      1. Well, the House passed the GSE Reform Act of 2005 that would have curtailed the loan activity of Freddie and Fannie immediately.

        Unfortunately, Bushy-boy pocket vetoed it.

        Mike Oxley-R (then Financial Services Chair)soon left the House and wrote about how Bush fucked him over on that bill.

        1. Listen dumbass, we had this argument six months ago and you ran away like the little fraud you are back then too.

          I'll give you the opportunity to answer the question we asked you last time- HOW DID BUSH POCKET VETO THE BILL IF IT NEVER MADE IT TO HIS DESK?

          1. Shove this up your ass.


            Its the official end to the GSE Reform Act from the Bush White House web site.

            The Senate was on board too (S. 190).

            Bush intervened so that the housing bubble would keep inflating.

            1. The Senate was on board too (S. 190).

              Funny, that's not what this says.


              Or this-


              You are a TOOL.

              1. Bush killed it.

                Read the fucking White House link!

                Bush wanted to goose the housing bubble.

                The White House link says that the GSE Reform Act would LESSEN the commitment to low-income (sub-prime) buyers!

                Bush wanted the mortgage bubble you fucking idiot!

                1. Shrike,

                  Stop shrieking and tell me how Bush "pocket veto'd" the bill even though it never made it to his desk.

                  1. Can't we see somewhere what bills Bush vetoed? I don't seem to recall that there were that many.

                    1. A pocket veto isn't an actual veto.

                  2. Address Bush's commitment to sub-prime loans!

                    The mechanics of killing HR 1461 is secondary.

                    Why was Bush so hopped up on sub-prime?

                2. Even if Bush "killed it" by convincing the full Senate not to vote on it, that's still not a pocket veto, shriek.

                  In any case, you do note that Senator McCain was a cosponsor of S.190, right? So I'm sure that you were a full-throated McCain supporter in 2008, instead of supporting Senator Obama, the candidate representing Bush's third term?

                  1. Why, in your opinion, was Bush adamantly committed to sub-prime>

                    1. Admit that Bush didn't pocket veto the bill.


                    2. I think the problem here is that shrike doesn't know what a "pocket veto" is.


                    4. Did you know fire can't melt steel? Bush had explosives planted in the base of the towers, then on 9/11 he pretended like 4 planes were being hijacked when really he just rerouted them to Pennsylvania then flew 2 military jets into the World Trade Centers filled with more explosives then shot all the witnesses of flight 93 with an F15 after blowing up the Pentagon with a Cruise missile. It was only the world's most intricate and flawlessly executed plan, ever, ever.

                    5. Why, in your opinion, was Bush adamantly committed to sub-prime>

                      Because he was really fairly centrist, and much of the Washington establishment was wedded to Fannie and Freddie and sub-prime.

                      Hating Bush for his love of sub-prime is reasonable, but he was no different from Clinton or Obama or the vast majority of Democrats or many Republicans that way. Those who opposed sub-prime were mostly conservatives, but while they got the bill passed in the House, the "moderates" in the Senate blocked it.

                      And by "moderates" we don't mean McCain in this instance, who was quite good on Fannie and Freddie and subprime.

                      Shrike, I have no problem saying that Bush wasn't great on subprime. What I don't understand is your shrieking that this somehow makes Bush worse than most Democrats in general or than Obama (or Clinton) in particular.

            2. Pocket vetoing doesn't require intervention, by definition. So which statement was a lie? or are you just fucking stupid?


                1. Man, some real silence in here.

                  The only "pocket veto" I remember was that defense authorization bill. The only point to a pocket veto is that it can't be overridden by technicality, but if I recall correctly, Congress just sent him another, virtually identical bill.

  5. Nice alt-text on Royce there, Tim, even if it was the obvious one.

  6. GOP still has term limits on being Chair or Ranking Member of a committee. Experienced members still do musical chairs, but I think it's a little better than the Dems still doing strict seniority for everything.

  7. Paul Ryan also voted for TARP.

    Write his political obituary too, Cavanaugh.

    1. Ryan's running for chairmand of HFSC? Thanks for the tip.

      1. Write his obit on anything to do with fiscal conservatism.

        He blew it on TARP.

        1. But you're a TARP supporter, shrike. I suppose you have nothing to do with fiscal conservatism either, though.

          1. But I have only claimed to be a classic liberal.

            I support regulations to prevent something like TARP from "fiscal conservatives".

            Like capital requirements to prevent excessive leverage.

            1. Too bad those don't work.

              1. I am totally drinking donkey sperm by the gallon right now.

            2. But the US had the very same regulations as pushed by the international community in Basel II. And of course you do realize that the banking problems weren't limited to this country?

              Your obsession with a particular Team is absurd. You somehow think that you're upsetting people here when you correctly point out that Bush was not as good on the GSEs as McCain and a bunch of conservative Republicans. So? We already know that Bush wasn't particularly conservative and certainly wasn't libertarian.

              What makes no sense is your absurd defense of Democrats doing the same things that you despise when Republicans do it.

            3. The only bill you've cited, shrike, is one that was opposed unanimously by Democrats in a procedural vote (to recommit with instructions, basically killing it for that term), although somewhat more than half of Democrats supported it in the final vote when it was clear it would pass.

              So as far as we can tell, you have a cogent criticism of GWB for not being Republican enough.

  8. Specifically Bachus voted for the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, the $700 billion down payment that made it possible for President Obama and the Democrats to create continuing trillions in new debt.

    And this is absurd.

    Obama has been a net collector on TARP loans (ex the GSEs who are backed by a long-standing Treasury guarantee).


    Ridiculous. Shoddy work on your part, Tim.

    1. Accounting tricks FTW

    2. Obama has been a net collector on TARP loans (ex the GSEs who are backed by a long-standing Treasury guarantee).

      Ah, those pesky GSE's, let's just pretend they don't exist, and furthermore pretend they've *always* been backed by the U.S. Treasury when their issuing prospectuses (prospecti?) clearly stated they were *not* obligations of the U.S. government.

      And I'm sure the big banks won't need multiples of all the repaid TARP money once again when FASB regulatory forbearance is no longer sufficient to paper over the smoking holes in their balance sheets.

    3. Obama has been a net collector on TARP loans (ex the GSEs who are backed by a long-standing Treasury guarantee).

      So you're saying that Bush's policy-- continued as the Bush-Obama policy-- was a good idea, right shrike?

      Although I understand that you favored the McCain position instead of the Bush-Obama position on the GSEs.

    4. Pro-TARP but also pro-GSE reform, it's clear that shrike was a solid McCain supporter.

      1. No, no, no! Anything that's good when a Democrat does it is bad when a Republican does it, see?

  9. Bachus reminds me of that guy who's head of the Illinois Nazi's in Blues Brothers and plays Tom Hanks's creepy neighbor in The Burbs.

    1. Bah! Superfluous apostrophe FTL!

    2. Thank you. I was racking my fucking brain wondering who he reminded me of, and that's the guy.

  10. Can someone please explain to me how Ben Bernanke is "destroying capitalism"? Please? Preferably someone who has a competent grasp of monetary policy and the history of economic thought and doesn't take the Glenn Beck route of equating QE with Keynesian stimulus. (Protip: Milton Friedman proposed Japan try QE in the 90s)

    Oh and another protip, for the morons insisting we're going to face hyperinflation or even high inflation... we're not. We're just fucking not. Central banks the world over are far more capable of dealing with inflation in a post 70s world, again thanks in large part to Friedman and company kicking the 60s-70s Keynesians to the curb. Do you think markets are efficient? Markets aren't predicting inflation. The Fed is trying to return us to their implicit 2% target.

    1. Unless it's written somewhere under the rules of capitalism that no speculator will ever lose money buying an MBS, and that savers should always be liquidated in order to stealthily recapitalize insolvent banks, then yeah, I'd say Bernanke is doing a bit of violence to capitalism.

      Once Bernanke succeeds in shoving everyone and his Grandma into risk assets, what then? The simple answer is that the rug's going to get pulled out from under them, and it's a good bet they'll look to blame evil "capitalism" when that happens.

    2. Exactly.

      This site is filled with anti-Fed goldbug John Birch-type Paulians who are ignorant of central banking and who constantly jack their jaws like Glenn Beck.

      1. Those gold bugs just made a whole lot more money today.

        1. Uh, yeah. Now that you mention it, anti-Fed goldbug John Birch-type Paulians and Glenn Beck know way more about central banking than I do.

          1. I would say that is a fair statement.

      2. Agreed.

        My question is: how it is that even a relatively local monopoly on any particular exchanged good is supposed to be a bad thing, while a national monopoly on the medium of exchange itself is supposed to be a good thing?

        1. What, don't you trust the government?

          1. I do believe in government, I do, I do!
            I do believe in government, I do, I do!
            I do believe in government, I do, I do!
            I do believe in government, I do, I do!
            I do believe in government, I do, I do!
            I do believe in government, I do, I do!

    3. "Central banks the world over are far more capable of dealing with hiding and postponing inflation in a post 70s world.


    4. So what you are saying is "it's different this time"?

      1. It'll be different this time.

        1. It'll totally be more different than it was last time!

    5. Bernanke's not doing too much to destroy capitalism. The destroying of capitalism is happening from the fiscal and political side. Bernanke has to choose from several different monetary options, all of which have downsides. Not doing QE has its own negatives.

    6. "for the morons insisting we're going to face hyperinflation or even high inflation... we're not. We're just fucking not."

      -Very compelling argument. Are you on the debate team at your high school?

  11. No one else probably cares about this, but at the end of the first video of Royce grilling Bernanke and Geithner, Royce makes the devastating point to wrap up his statement that true market discipline would mean that AIG would fail.

    It's like a complete debunking of all of Ben and Timmy's excuses for why "the government" (meaning taxpayers) should bail out AIG.

    And then BAWNEY FWANK slams the gavel and the video ends.

    Royce was right, that bailing out AIG distorted the true market discipline, and more importantly this is why we are having such a slow recovery.
    As an example of how useless the government is in enforcing true market discipline, I give you-

    Congressman Sherman Questions Bush Treasury Official About Executive Compensation Limits

  12. The guys over at FFT called this big swing for repubs. I am one of their newsletter subscribers they are very good and well worth a look.

  13. Royce is probably just gathering support as the alternative to take over in two years, since Bochus will be term-limited out of the chairmanship of the committee.

  14. How did America get into debt ? Why can't any branch of goverment control the deficit ? What does our history teach us regarding debt based economy ? Who has more power, government or banks ?

    Watch this vid, i promise you'll learn something.

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