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Obama bill signing
President Obama signs STOCK Act, surrounded by people who can't line their pockets through
insider trading anymore. (Jason Reed/Reuters)
Hey! Congress did something! They passed a bill, in both chambers, for President Obama to sign.
Washington (CNN) -- President Barack Obama signed legislation on Wednesday aimed at restoring Americans' faith in the nation's public institutions at a time they rank at record lows in opinion polls. The act bans insider trading by members of Congress and many executive branch employees. [...]

"The powerful shouldn't get to create one set of rules for themselves and another set of rules for everybody else," Obama said. "If we expect that to apply to our biggest corporations and to our most successful citizens, it certainly applies to our elected officials, especially at a time when there is a deficit of trust between this city and the rest of the country."

The STOCK (Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge) Act would stop members of Congress, their staff and executive branch employees from using the inside information they might gain by virtue of their positions to trade stocks or securities. It also limits them in buying stock in initial public offerings only to those IPOs that are open to the general public.

The Sunlight Foundation is one group that worked hard for passage of this law, and they're reasonably pleased with the strength of the law, though with some caveats. While they say it's a "step forward":

We'll be watching closely to be sure that the provisions are implemented strongly.

And we'll also be pushing for stronger reforms. The STOCK Act was just one vehicle for ethics and transparency reform in Congress, and a response to a particularly objectionable idea—representatives seeking to make a private profit through their public service. There are 20 more exposés like the CBS story just waiting to happen.

There are more serious problems than insider trading when it comes to money and politics (Citizens United, anyone?) but the STOCK Act is a start. And it's remarkable for one thing: It's a new law that came out of the Republican House of Representatives that actually does no harm to the American public. So, for that alone, it should be recognized.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 12:40 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (28+ / 0-)

    "There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning." —Warren Buffett

    by Joan McCarter on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 12:40:45 PM PDT

  •  Noooo! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cvstos, shoeless, uciguy30

    Did anyone ever figure out who that loudmouth was in the SOTU address?

  •  Well to be fair (9+ / 0-)

    Biden never did. I think he has to be one of the very few politicians who hasn't got rich while in office.

    Last count he has had to mortgage his home three times in order to help pay for his kids college educations. And they are still paying off college loans. All except Bo I believe.

    Republican Family Values: Using the daughters from your first wife to convince everybody that your second wife is lying about your third wife.

    by jsfox on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 12:46:53 PM PDT

    •  Bo the dog or Beau the son? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BamaBlueJ, jsfox

      (pullin' your leg)
      What you said is true though. Biden was a single dad who wasn't wealthy even while in the Senate. He's a good guy, I want him to be my grandpa!

      When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

      by YoungArizonaLiberal on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:37:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Let's keep the ball rolling (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mayfly, uciguy30

    This is the type of law that needs to be passed.  And please let more follow.

    And it's remarkable for one thing, it's a new law that came out of the Republican House of Representatives that actually does no harm to the American public. So, for that alone, it should be recognized.

    I am guessing that this originated from the Tea Party side rather than the old money Mittens (whose family and/or friends have probably abused the hell out of this prior) side of the dysfunctional repug party.

  •  Isn't the GOP-led House great?... (8+ / 0-)

    in between repealing the ACA 27 times and passing dozens of anti-women bills, they found time to pass something that isn't too bad... wow, I'm really impressed.  

    “For the first time in two decades, Osama bin Laden is not a threat to this country.” President Obama 1/24/12

    by BarackStarObama on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:00:14 PM PDT

    •  The GOPs would have looked very bad voting con. nt (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      uciguy30, BarackStarObama

      "'s difficult to imagine what else Republicans can do to drive women away in 2012, unless they decide to bring back witch-hanging. And I wouldn't put it past them." James Wolcott

      by Mayfly on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:22:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Now get them off their drug habit (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BarackStarObama, tb mare, redstella

      Congress critters should be recused from any vote that benefits a campaign contributor of $5,000 or more. Tax breaks for big oil, big pharma or big ag? Bills that facilitate private prison management, student loans from the big banks, or deregulation (or taxation) of financial transactions should not be voted on by Senators or Congresspersons with major skin in the game.

      Will it happen in my lifetime? Pffft.

  •  Jaw meet floor... (6+ / 0-)

    Must bet Eric Cantor, and his minions, were too busy enriching themselves through their various business/government conflicts of interest to kill this thing.

    I'll admit to being pleasantly surprised by this turn of events.

    The only difference between (Mitt) Romney and George W. Bush is that Romney hasn't destroyed the American economy, yet - MoT

    by Herodotus Prime on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:01:44 PM PDT

  •  Cantor must be displeased. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gordon20024, dcnw, CoolOnion, uciguy30, Matt Z


  •  How did something like this pass? (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OldDragon, CoolOnion, uciguy30, Matt Z, dkosdan

    Are the Republicans still on Easter break?

    I believe all Southern liberals come from the same starting point -- race. Once you figure out they are lying to you about race, you start to question everything.- Molly Ivins

    by shoeless on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:02:27 PM PDT

    •  Yes, they must have gotten a large supply of Peeps (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Matt Z, shoeless

      from the President and stayed home.

      I've never liked Peeps, must be a liberal thing.

      When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

      by YoungArizonaLiberal on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:39:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Will the Supreme Court visit this? After all... (9+ / 0-)

    that's what the Robert's Court is all about, isn't it?  Helping rich people get richer.

  •  Damn. If any photo needs to be superimposed with (4+ / 0-)

    thought bubbles, its this one

    "I smoke. If this bothers anyone, I suggest you look around at the world in which we live and shut your fuckin' mouth." --- Bill Hicks

    by voroki on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:04:02 PM PDT

  •  How'd THAT get through? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OldDragon, uciguy30, tb mare

    Was it an April Fools Day gag that somehow got loose?

    48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam If you can't feed a hundred people, then just feed one. - Mother Teresa

    by wasatch on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:04:30 PM PDT

  •  They didnt even want to pass this (6+ / 0-)

    I believe the STOCK act was first introduced years ago by Rep Louise Slaughter and now former Rep. Brian Baird.

    It wasnt until a recent 60 Minutes piece about shady stuff going on regarding investments by members of Congress did lawmakers really move on that.

    BTW, can we find out who the lawmakers are in the picture? That's Scott Brown on the right, correct? Hope pic with the President helps in MA, I guess.

  •  That's funny (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, davelf2

    I don't see Rep. Spencer Bachus of Alabama in that picture of the signing ceremony.

    Surely the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee would be there, no?


    The Office of Congressional Ethics has looked at the trading activities of Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala. In the two months surrounding the 2008 financial collapse and subsequent $700 billion economic bailout passed by Congress, Bachus made more than three dozen trades. The OCE is an independent ethics office of the House, run by a board outside Congress.
  •  Good thing most of them are married. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, tb mare

    I suppose the STOCK act can't prohibit bedroom talk.

    Or force a spouse to testify if it ever became necessary.



  •  This is HARD EVIDENCE of what we can accomplish (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, davelf2, donnamarie

    when we band together and scream loudly enough that our voices are heard over those of the wealthy lobbyists!

    Do you know how long this legislation languished in Congress?

    Democrats Louise Slaughter of New York and Tim Walz of Minnesota have introduced the House version of this bill every year for the past 4 years!

    Head over to my Action Center and see what other legislation needs our voices in a crescendo about.

    Stop the party of Gut & Spend policies that gut our Earned Benefits programs like Social Security and Medicare and spends on deeper and deeper tax breaks for the wealthy elite.

    by jillwklausen on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:15:15 PM PDT

  •  Ouch. A blow to the 99% again (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, josmndsn, Matt Z

    Less riches via insider trading, less trickle down to the minions.

  •  Stock Act (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Eric Cantor inserted a gaping hole into this legislation that "allows" ways around some of the law.  

    •  Can you flesh this out a little (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      That would make perfect sense as we've seen him essentially trying to kill this thing at every turn, but it might help a little if we could identify where the malfeasance takes place.

      Thanks for keeping an eye on this.

      The only difference between (Mitt) Romney and George W. Bush is that Romney hasn't destroyed the American economy, yet - MoT

      by Herodotus Prime on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:21:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Valiantly ensuring that Congress... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, George Hier

    can't steal from the wealthy.

    Now about those Medicare cuts...


    I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

    by detroitmechworks on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:18:53 PM PDT

  •  They all must have bought stock (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ahead of time in insurance companies so when SCOTUS dumps ACA, they'll be set to take advantage of  their soaring stock values.

    The law won't matter, they'll already be set for life.

  •  Okay, I'll bite. (4+ / 0-)

    They had to pass a special law to make illegal for Congress, what was already illegal for the rest of the country?

    Or am I an idiot?

    may we not be strangers in the lush province of joy - Charles Wright

    by AlyoshaKaramazov on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:20:27 PM PDT

    •  As somebody told me last week, "We owe our (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      George Hier

      respect to Congresspeople" as in, even though they are supposed to represent us they are better than us and we'd better bow down.
      I believe that Congresspeople should be subject to the same rules that we do. In fact, I'd like them to be cut off of federal health insurance for 6 months to see how it feels. Or have a pay-freeze(IOU) because they can't be paid.

      When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

      by YoungArizonaLiberal on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:43:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  No, you got it. n/t (0+ / 0-)

      Why do I have the feeling George W. Bush joined the Stonecutters, ate a mess of ribs, and used the Constitution as a napkin?

      by Matt Z on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:50:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Just like repealing tax cuts for billionaires, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    this is the kind of legislation no representative wants to be seen publically voting against.

    Which is why Republican leadership tries so hard not to let anything like this ever come to a vote.

  •  so how is this monitored (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    uciguy30, Matt Z

    and what happens if they get caught?  A strong talking to?

    •  50 lashings with a wet noodle followed by a 5 min (0+ / 0-)

      dunk in a pool of Hershey's Syrup.

      Read the bill it's def. in there.

      When the operation of the machine becomes so odious that you can't take part,you've got to put your bodies upon the gears;you got to make it stop.Indicate to the people who run it that unless you're free the machine will be prevented from working at all

      by YoungArizonaLiberal on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:40:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  1/2 the pols in Congress should resign or ... (0+ / 0-)

    put their stock holdings in a trust in the name of their parakeet or favorite pet rock.


    Still waiting for the culprits who brought us the Great Recession to go to jail.

    *Austerity is the opposite of Prosperity*

    by josmndsn on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:26:16 PM PDT

  •  Which Explains This (0+ / 0-)

    Worst day in a month for US stocks

    And This:

    US futures tumble as Fed backs away from stimulus

    That one percent can't do with their own they need the others monies to play with, much like trickle down, con, free market supplyside capitalism!!

    Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

    by jimstaro on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:27:08 PM PDT

  •  Yes into the bill (0+ / 0-)

    From the Sunlight link:

    There's plenty of disappointing news in the bill.  It doesn't address political intelligence firms (as Lisa has covered often), and the honest services provisions got removed (intended to help with prosecutions of corrupt public officials). The bill also requires information to be destroyed after six years, which is a ridiculous, wasteful requirement that undermines accountability and appropriate preservation of important historical materials.  The bill also left out the sale and purchase of real estate, even while requiring the disclosure of mortgage terms.

    So...they just tell "intelligence" folks, get a kick back, and if caught, no balls to prosecute.

    This is NOT strong enough, too many loopholes imho.

    Congress was all WAY TOO quiet about this.  If the Bill really were to stop their criminal behavior, it would never have gotten to where it is now.

  •  Anyone have a link? (0+ / 0-)

    Is there a link somewhere that shows that only republican congresspeople are involved in insider trading?

    That would sink a lot of campaigns.  If that is true, it would seem to bode well for democrats.  If that is not true then it does not say much for congresspeople from both parties.

    More republicans being involved in this than democrats does not mean much.  If no democrats are involved in this then this needs to be the point of a lot of political ads and campaigns.

    Only horses should wear blinders.

    by independantman on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 01:57:36 PM PDT

  •  I'd like to recommend this Act be (0+ / 0-)

    enforced by the SEC, under the stewardship of Mary Schapiro:

    Shapiro served in various roles as a financial services regulator in the administrations of Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and Bill Clinton. From 2006 to early 2009, she was the Chairman and CEO of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), the securities industry's self-regulatory organization for broker-dealers and exchanges in the United States
    Fraud?  On Wall Street?  Where?

    Or, perhaps the Act could be enforced by the Fed - but only if one has a really grand sense of humor.

    Next Up: GOP Congress passes bill asking Wall Street to be "Nice".  WH signing ceremony in ... 3... 2.... 1....

    Meanwhile, back at the ranch:

    In 2008, her last year at FINRA, Schapiro earned a regular compensation package of $3.3 million; on departure from FINRA, she received additional lump sum retirement benefit payments that brought her total package in 2008 to just under $9 million
    Not bad.  Not bad at all.

    Who said helping the 99% doesn't pay well?

    That's not fraud you smell, that's the wind of bipartisanship change.

    It isn't that Obama hasn't Changed anything; It's that his actions advance the 1%'s interests.

    by Johnathan Ivan on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 02:32:08 PM PDT

    •  And the best part: (0+ / 0-)
      While being confirmed Schapiro reversed her long-held stance that financial markets were burdened by too much regulation. As SEC Chairman she would not continue her earlier efforts to deregulate the industry. Schapiro also partially blamed the financial crises of 2008 on deregulation, telling senators that the regulatory system had "not kept pace with the markets and the needs of investors". As the SEC's head, she said, she would press for tighter regulation of financial instruments, including derivatives.

      (A wolf decides to protect the sheep):

      An early setback for Schapiro as SEC chairman occurred in September of 2009 when U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff rejected the SEC's proposed $33 million settlement with Bank of America. BoA had been charged with failure disclose bonuses paid to Merrill Lynch executive before the two companies merged. Under the settlement's terms BoA was allowed to deny any wrongdoing, which they did when pressed by Rakoff on the matter of guilt.[11] Rakoff said the settlement did not "comport with the most elementary notions of justice and morality".[12] Seven months later, Rakoff approved a $150 million settlement of the BoA case; BoA did not have to change its declaration of innocence

      Ah well.  Sorry BoA.  At least Mary DID try, right?  That counts for something, eh?

      It isn't that Obama hasn't Changed anything; It's that his actions advance the 1%'s interests.

      by Johnathan Ivan on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 02:37:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Judge Jed Rakoff (0+ / 0-)

        The SEC reached a settlement with a number of firms for defrauding their clients in 2007 in matters relating to the financial meltdown in 2008.  For instance, GoldmanSachs paid $550 million in 2010.  Each of these settlements included boilerplate language that says the firm involved neither admitted nor denied wrongdoing.  Each of the settlements was rubber stamped until it was Citigroup's turn and US District Court Judge Jed Rakoff refused last November.  

        There was an article  about it in Bloomberg yesterday.
        This is one of the most interesting outcomes of the Wall Street mess and it has received little media attention compared to it its importance.  

        "Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves." - Abraham Lincoln

        by leftreborn on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 04:09:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  To me.. the far more interesting aspect (0+ / 0-)

          is how our regulatory agencies - under a "Democratic" Administration ostensibly wanting "Change We Can Believe In", appear to be staffed by pro-industry insiders, intent on anything but change.

          It's rather odd, that.  Almost as if ... well, of course Obama wants change.

          It's just there's no qualified people except industry insiders who fight for industry to staff the regulatory agencies with.

          Obama has no choice.

          /angry snark

          It isn't that Obama hasn't Changed anything; It's that his actions advance the 1%'s interests.

          by Johnathan Ivan on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 05:03:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You're not far off. (0+ / 0-)

            I work in the industry and I have for a very long time.  The public doesn't understand the basics and yet expects oversight.  By whom?  There are some creative and inventive minds around and the regulators can't keep up.  Anyone from outside the industry would be completely useless. The mistake is to think that the story ends there. Where's the Attorney General of New York?  When Spitzer was the AG he was very active.  Wall Street rejoiced when he ran for Governor because they knew he'd be off their backs. I couldn't even tell you the current AG's name.  Why is it important?  JPMorgan's 2010 Annual Report said it has 10,000 litigations pending where it is named as the defendent.  That's not a normal number.  The 2011 Annual Report swapped out the "10,000" for "numerous."  The estimated dollar amount of liability increased.  Where's the AG?  Everything gets laid at Obama's feet.  Nobody ran in 2008 as the best person to solve the worse financial crisis since the Great Depression.  The meltdown didn't happen until September 16, 2008 and McCain was still saying that the fundamentals of the economy were sound on that date.  Hint:  None of them know anything either.   Just look at the "audit" of the Fed.  Did they know what they were looking at?  

            "Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves." - Abraham Lincoln

            by leftreborn on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 05:49:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm sorry: (0+ / 0-)

              But I just don't buy the whole "only insiders understand the complexities".

              If that's the case - and we can only look to industry for the expertise to regulate it with - then why bother?  Why even pretend for a moment that anything will ever change?

              This defense of Obama - that there is no choice - is actually a very solid argument as to why it doesn't matter if Obama wins re-election or not, in so far as regulating industry goes.

              Of course I'm being snarky:  It's ludicrous to think that no one understands industry except industry insiders.

              What about whistle blowers?

              What about people who DO NOT have a history of advancing industry's agenda but nonetheless have the educational background to understand industry?

              Really, the whole argument that Obama has no choice because no one but pro-industry insiders understands industry is the most blatant attempt at deception and defending Obama at all costs that I have ever witnessed.

              It's a pathetic defense.  

              And it's bullshit.

              Obama did NOT have to nominate pro-industry insiders to regulate the very industries they advocated on behalf of.

              Of course, denigrating government as not having the "expertise" to regulate industry - isn't that a far right talking point that's advanced in the name of "efficiency" and "self-regulation"?

              Such defenses are nothing more than a fig leaf to try and cover Obama's naked advancement of Wall Street's interests.

              There is a reason that Obama's Chiefs of Staff come from Wall Street Banks. And it has nothing to do with Change We Can Believe In.

              by Johnathan Ivan on Thu Apr 05, 2012 at 10:56:00 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  The mistake is to think that the story ends there. (0+ / 0-)

                I understand you.  I've had this conversation many times now, online, in person, with all sorts of people.  

                If you think that you already have all the information you need, I'll keep quiet.  From your comment, I'll conclude 1) that your heart is in the right place; 2) that you would benefit from knowing more and I certainly don't mean anything offensive by that.  

                My job isn't to persuade or convince.  Starting from the end of your reply, what would you have liked to see since President Obama's term began? What should have been done differently?  If different people could be selected, what do you want them to do?  My own answer is that we needed changes that would prevent the same thing that happened in 2007-2008 from happening again.  What we got was the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.  It created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Republicans in Congress refused to confirm Richard Cordray as its Director.  Instead, they proposed a second bill, to water down the first one and strip the CFPB of its rulemaking authority.  In January, President Obama appointed Cordray, a former Attorney General from the state of Ohio, as the Bureau's director, by using his recess appointment power.  

                Never believe anyone who narrates a tale of disaster on Wall Street in which Wall Street firms are absent.  The responsability for our financial meltdown remains primarily with Goldman, JPMorgan, Citigroup, AIG, LehmanBros & BearStearns (both of which went under,) Countrywide Financial and other large mortgage issuers, and the ratings agencies.  This is consistent with corporate culture earlier in the same decade when there was another parade of business failures.  Enron and Worldcomm were the most infamous. It's important to understand that all of these firms didn't just commit fraud.  They undermined and sabotaged the foundations of capitalism as used in the US.  Despite the dotcom bubble, and spectacular business corporation flameouts early in the decade, the Republicans continued promoting and advancing an agenda that insisted business corporations are infallible and markets are self-regulating.  

                It's not by mistake or by accident that a political party would still be able to promote a failed system and failed policy.  Robust strategy and comprehensive resources are used to convince a sufficient number of voters to take seriously what we already know doesn't work.  They saturate the public with their efforts so that even those who follow the Democratic Party principles begin to consume some of their poison.

                There is a huge difference in using your vote for Obama and the Democrats, or the Republicans, or abstaining.  If anything I said made you think otherwise, ask yourself whether the Wall St Reform Act would have passed without the Democratic Party in Congress. Would we have the CFPB and Cordray as its director.  How about the Credit Card Reform Act?

                Does that mean we should be satisfied?  NO!  I wish the repealed provisions of Glass Steagall were reinstated.   I know from history that the stock market crash of 1929 brought on the Great Depression and it wasn't until 1933 that significant legislation was passed to address what had happened.  More legislation was passed in 1934 and 1940.   The Republicans fought back and managed to undo progress in 1937.  There's never a straight rode to get to the destination.  

                Please don't become discouraged or lose sight of the goal.

                "Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves." - Abraham Lincoln

                by leftreborn on Fri Apr 06, 2012 at 09:31:10 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Here's a link to the WH's Fact Sheet on (0+ / 0-)

    the STOCK Act:

    Read it HERE.

    Some of my favorite excerpts:

    The STOCK Act expressly affirms that Members of Congress and staff are not exempt from the insider trading prohibitions of federal securities laws
    Well, shit!  You mean these guys think they are above the law?  OMG.  

    We need much more legislation... imagine a scenario where a member of congress is availing him (or her) self of prostitution services.  They could easily claim "Well, now, there's no specific law that says I'm not exempt from prostitution laws is there?"  Ergo, I'm innocent!

    Someone get me Mark Foley.  He resigned too soon.

    gives House and Senate ethics committees authority to implement additional ethics rules
    Well, that'll certainly put the fear of God into Congress, won't it?  House and Senate....ethics cough .... oh I can't even complete the sentence I'm so giddy.

    And then there's the part about pension forfeiture for insider trading.

    If that doesn't cause wealthy corrupt members of Congress to tremble, nothing will.

    And people wondered why the GOP passed it so quickly.

    The GOP gets to show its base that its fighting corruption by the powerful and the Democrats get to do the exact same thing.  

    I'm waiting to see who says first "This bill was long overdue.  It's something I wish would have moved on sooner."

    There's only one way they could have made this farcical kabuki act more enjoyable:  To have Timothy Geithner and Ben Bernanke sitting on opposite sides of Obama whilst he signed it.

    It isn't that Obama hasn't Changed anything; It's that his actions advance the 1%'s interests.

    by Johnathan Ivan on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 02:50:14 PM PDT

  •  Just when I think things are too far gone - (0+ / 0-)

    something like this comes along and gives me hope.

    Though, I would like to see the law's worrding in its entirety.

    If you desire a better world - be a better person.

    by laserhaas on Wed Apr 04, 2012 at 03:12:17 PM PDT

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