Tag Archives: Goldman Sachs

What did Goldman Sachs get in exchange for paying Hillary Clinton $200,000 an hour?

Hillary Clinton look bored about the deaths of 4 Americans who asked for her help
Hillary Clinton look bored about the deaths of 4 Americans who asked for her help

This article is from the Washington Free Beacon.

It says:

Hillary Clinton could not help but laugh Friday when a reporter asked her to release the transcripts from her high-priced Goldman Sachs speeches at a rope line in New Hampshire.

“Will you release the transcript of your paid speeches at Goldman Sachs?” a reporter from the Intercept asked Clinton at a campaign event, referring to the $675,000 she has earned in speaking fees from the bank.

Clinton looked directly at the reporter, and after a pause, laughed in his face. She then carried on greeting supporters.

“There’s a lot of controversy over those speeches,” the reporter said. “Secretary?”

Clinton continued to speak over the reporter, drowning him out.

“Hi! So glad to see you!” Clinton said.

“Is that a no?” the reporter persisted.

Clinton ignored his question and repeated a greeting to another supporter.

“I am so happy to see you,” Clinton said.

“Secretary Clinton, will you release the transcript of your Goldman Sachs speeches?” the reporter said again. Clinton ignored him.

Clinton has come under scrutiny for giving high-priced speeches, averaging $225,000 per gig, at big banks such as Goldman Sachs, all the while preaching about income inequality on the campaign trail. She and her husband have made more than $125 million in speaking fees since 2001.

Here is the video where she laughs at the questioner, and then ignores him, even after repeated attempts to get her to be accountable:

You might remember that Clinton often talks about how she is “dead broke”. Is she really “dead broke”?

$300,000 an hour for a speech
$300,000 an hour for a speech

Hillary Clinton’s speech fees

The Weekly Standard reports:

Disclosure forms filed with the Federal Election Commission by Hillary Clinton provide fascinating details of the remarkable money-making machine that is the once-and-possibly-future first couple. Between January 2014 and the filing of the forms on May 15, 2015 (up to and including a speech by Bill Clinton to the American Institute of Architects the day before the filing), the Clintons made about $30 million, approximately $25 million from speeches alone.

Both of the Clintons have given speeches regularly in the 16-month period covered in the filing with rarely more than a few weeks off in between engagements. Often events are crowded together during a period of several days, sometimes with more than one speech on the same day. On a single day last October, Bill and Hillary delivered a total of four speeches, taking home over $1 million. Those four speeches fell in the middle of a three-day blitz that brought in a total of $1,511,000. (Mrs. Clinton edged out her husband $786,000 to $725,000.)

[…]Although the audiences for the Clintons vary widely, the actual content and duration of the speeches is not always revealed. However, a YouTube video of Bill Clinton’s recent speech to the American Institute of Architects, apparently recorded by an attendee, shows that the $250,000 fee paid to Mr. Clinton purchased the group a 23 minute speech, an hourly rate of about $652,000.

On a per-hour basis, she makes more than all of the CEOs of the largest companies. Well, maybe not more than Donald Trump, though. New York values. Actually, Donald Trump donated at least $100,000 to the Clinton Foundation, so maybe he can tell us what people get for giving the Clinton’s exorbitant sums of money.

Donald Trump and his friends, the Clintons
Donald Trump and his friends, the Clintons

Meanwhile, Ted Cruz had to liquidate assets and take out loans against his investments in order to run for Senate. Which of these people is more like you and I?

Ted Cruz’s scary, unreported, undisclosed Goldman Sachs loan

Texas Senator Ted Cruz
Texas Senator Ted Cruz

The New York Times reported that Ted Cruz borrowed money from his Goldman Sachs investment account to finance his Senate campaign, then didn’t disclose it. Is their story correct? Let’s see.

Caffeinated Thoughts explains:

The New York Times “broke” a story yesterday about a Goldman Sachs loan that Ted and Heidi Cruz obtained during his run for U.S. Senate that wasn’t reported properly on an FEC filing.  I’vedefended Marco Rubio when New York Times fired garbage at him, and I’ll do the same with Cruz.

This story was one *discovered* from public disclosure forms, and it is a story that alreadyran in 2013.  So the New York Times didn’t run any new news here. All they did was run some opposition research that a rival campaign gave them. *Great* journalism.

This is a non-story. Beyond the fact it is rehashed news taken from public records here are a couple reasons why there’s nothing there.

First, The loan was disclosed. It may not have been on the right FEC form at the right time, but it was made public and it was made public before Cruz’s runoff election against then Texas Lt. Governor Dewey Dewhurst.

The Caffeinated Thoughts article has a public, federal reporting document filed on July 9th, 2012, that has the following entry: “Goldman Sachs Margin Loan”. So this loan was not hidden and undisclosed and secret and scandalous. Cruz simply made an error and didn’t disclose it on another public form.

Newsflash: borrowing on margin is normal

For those of you who invest, like me, you’ll know that anyone can borrow money on margin from their investment brokerage account, although it is not recommended. Goldman Sachs is an investment broker, and you can borrow money on margin if you have a brokerage account with them. You can do the same thing with E-Trade, Ameritrade, ScottTrade, etc. This is not some great mystery. This is a margin loan given to you by your investment brokerage firm, with collateral provided by your investment securities.

Anyway, let’s see Cruz explain it in his own words.

First, on CNN:

Second, here is Cruz’s 2-minute answer from last night

Now, that’s a simple answer that anyone can understand, but the left wants to make it seem sinister and sneaky. There is no question that the left, including the mainstream media, has it in for Cruz. The radically leftist New Republic entitled this story “Ted Cruz Defends His Undisclosed Loan from Goldman Sachs”. The radically leftist New York Times called it “Ted Cruz Didn’t Report Goldman Sachs Loan in a Senate Race”. Associated Press “Cruz Failed To Disclose Goldman Loan On Reports”. Secular Talk “Ted Cruz Took $500k From Goldman Sachs & Didn’t Disclose it”. They don’t have time to report on any of the scandals of the Obama administration – especially Hillary Clinton. But they do have time to make a mountain out of a mole hill about a simple thing like borrowing on margin.

I feel bad for Cruz in the way that he has to answer these deceptive attacks from the leftist media, and then again from Marco Rubio and Donald Trump, who parrot the stories they read in the leftist media. These things are easily explained, but you have to actually understand how real life works. It just depresses me when I think about how hard it is for an honest man to run for office in a world like this. You can’t fight back against these smears… the minute you respond to one, there’s another dozen lies to answer. It’s just depressing.

The best part of the debate

However, I will end this post on a high note. The highlight of the debate last night was that Cruz finally defended himself from Trump’s attacks.

Here is their entire exchange on Trump’s birther argument against Cruz:

Cruz graduated from Princeton and Harvard Law. He clerked for J. Michael Luttig in the 4th District Court of Appeals, then Chief Justice Earl Rehnquist at the U.S. Supreme Court. Two conservative justices. As Solicitor General of Texas, he defended religious liberty, gun rights and other conservative issues in front of the Supreme Court. The man understands Constitutional law.

Here is Frank Luntz’s focus group responding to the exchange:

You can read an assessment of the exchange in the radically leftist New York Times, of all places – which actually gets it right for a change. Headline is “Ted Cruz, Once Dismissed, Emerges as a Slashing Debater”. I’m not kidding.

In any case, I responded to the charge in detail here, citing legal experts on both sides of the political spectrum.

Mitt Romney’s tax returns would make him lose the election to Obama

Wall Street Banks contributions to Mitt Romney
Wall Street banks make huge contributions to Mitt Romney

From The Hill. (H/T Riehl Worldview)

Excerpt:

It’s important not to overstate the perils Romney faces. He is still by far the best-funded candidate in the race. He has a state-by-state infrastructure that is the envy of his rivals. Even if he were to lose Saturday’s South Carolina primary, he would  likely remain the overall favorite to clinch the nomination.

But the procession of errors has been striking nonetheless — and it has raised concerns among many in the GOP about his vulnerabilities in a general election contest with President Obama.

Most of Romney’s awkwardness has revolved around questions about his wealth. During a heated exchange during a debate last month, he ill-advisedly offered to bet Perry $10,000 that his own account of what he had written in one of his books was correct. Perry declined, saying he was “not in the betting business,” but the episode heightened perceptions that Romney is out of touch with most Americans.

The same pattern keeps cropping up. Earlier this week, he was asked about the effective tax rate he pays on his income, and managed to injure himself twice in the space of a few sentences. First, he acknowledged that his tax rate was “probably closer to the 15 percent rate than anything.” He then added: “I get speaker’s fees from time to time, but not very much.”

The first claim was almost certainly true. Romney’s income is believed to come chiefly from long-term investments rather than earned income, and that would indeed make him liable for capital gains tax levied at a 15 percent rate. But it still places the multimillionaire in a more lightly taxed band than many voters — something which Newt Gingrich tried to take advantage of with his mocking proposal to introduce a “Mitt Romney 15 percent flat tax.”

Perhaps even worse was Romney’s “not very much” comment. His latest financial disclosure form, which covered the period from February 2010 to February 2011, revealed that he earned $374,327 for speeches. The sum is approximately seven times the median household income in the United States.

Those remarks had been preceded by a televised debate at which he gave a muddled response about whether he would release his tax returns.

Romney flubbed the tax-return question for a second time at a debate last Thursday, eliciting boos from the crowd when he said he would “maybe” follow the example of his late father, former Michigan Gov. George Romney, who released 12 years of tax returns when running for the presidency in 1968.

Romney’s mangled syntax on these occasions seems symptomatic of a wider personal unease in discussing his finances. GOP consultants say he needs to get over that discomfort if he is to prove an effective candidate.

Another concern that I have is that Mitt Romney has $20-100 million dollars in his retirement account.

Excerpt:

Like many Americans, Mitt Romney has an individual retirement account. Unlike most Americans, Mr. Romney has between $20.7 million and $101.6 million in it, a big chunk of his fortune.

Experts on estate planning said it is highly unusual to accumulate such a considerable sum in an IRA, an investment vehicle restricted by annual contribution limits. It appears that Mr. Romney’s grew so large mostly because it holds investments in Bain Capital, the private-equity firm he helped start.

[…]Mr. Romney is one of the richest presidential candidates in decades, and his GOP opponents increasingly are trying to turn wealth into a liability. President Barack Obama is expected to do the same if the former Massachusetts governor wraps up the nomination. Mr. Romney’s tax liability has emerged as a debating point in the GOP nominating contest, a proxy for a bigger argument over who should shoulder the nation’s tax burden.

In recent days, Mr. Romney’s rivals have pressed him to release his tax returns. They have attacked him for his role at Bain Capital, the source of his wealth. When Mr. Romney revealed Tuesday that his effective federal income-tax rate had been about 15% in recent years, both the White House and GOP candidates used the number as a cudgel.

[…]Michael Whitty, a lawyer at Vedder Price in Chicago who advises private-equity executives, said it is impossible to determine from Mr. Romney’s public disclosures how the IRA grew so large. Based on its listed holdings, which include many Bain Capital vehicles, Mr. Whitty theorizes Mr. Romney may have invested in Bain funds through a 401(k)-type plan, or directed some of his Bain holdings into such a plan, which he then rolled into an IRA.

How is he going to explain that? This might be one of the reasons why Romney is not releasing his tax returns. He needs to be pounded on this by Gingrich and Santorum until he drops out – we can’t afford to choose a nominee who has no hope of beating Barack Obama.

Related posts

Barack Obama is the worst President ever

Bill Whittle explains. (7 minutes)

This is not to mention his record on abortion – the most pro-abortion President ever. Or the election of hardline Muslim extremists in Egypt.

The man is a catastrophic failure.

Has Obama’s buddy Jon Corzine misplaced $1.2 billion of customer funds?

From the Washington Times.

Excerpt:

The facts are that on Oct. 25, Jon Corzine, a former New Jersey governor, stated he was confident that MF Global would successfully manage its $6.3 billion exposure to European debt (Spain, Portugal, Belgium and Italy). Yet a week after a failed attempt to sell the company, MF Global filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Oct. 31.

Now let’s discuss the failure of management at MF Global. Mr. Corzine who is considered by many one of the smartest fixed-income minds in the business took immeasurable risk with the capital of his firm. It was revealed that the company was leveraged 40-1. In summary, the company only had 2.5 percent equity invested against risk positions. Note: Even in the height of the subprime crisis a 40-1 leverage would have been considered extremely risky, where small movements in underlying positions could represent deleterious outcomes for investors.

Did the great Jon Corzine not learn from the greatest financial meltdown seen in the U.S. economy? The answer is simple, here is another example to the entrusted “gambling with other people’s money.” The irony of this is that in the August 2011 bond deal there is a key clause that states if Mr. Corzine departs as MF Global’s full-time chief executive officer prior to July 1, 2013, because of an appointment to a federal position by the president and confirmation of that appointment by the U.S. Senate, investors would get an additional 1 percent coupon on their existing 6.250 percent bonds. I beg to differ in that the “clause” should have said if Mr. Corzine decides to increase the risk-taking at MF Global similar to previous risk positions at Goldman Sachs, investors should be redeemed their money at 100 cents on the dollar. We will find out more but another concern, there is approximately $600 million of unaccounted for customer funds.

UPDATE: The figure is now $1.2 billion.

Excerpt:

The court-appointed trustee overseeing MF Global’s bankruptcy says up to $1.2 billion is missing from customer accounts, double what the firm had reported to regulators last month.

Obama is the Solyndra president. He’s been raiding the public coffers to reward his billionaire campaign fundraisers from day 1 with from his “stimulus” funding – running 1.3 trillion deficits to pay off all the people who got him elected. The young people who will have to pay off this debt still keep voting for him like lemmings – they have no idea about his connections to rich Wall Street bankers. They buy the rhetoric. And the Obama-media has no interest of informing anyone about his connections to dodgy people and organizations.

Look for Corzine to get a presidential pardon in 2012, when Obama leaves office.