Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

A Conservative and Compassionate Approach to Immigration Reform

Friday, May 22nd, 2015


Tomorrow joining me on Your Financial Editor is author David Strange. We will be discussing his new book, “A Conservative and Compassionate Approach to Immigration Reform” You can listen live from anywhere Saturday morning at 8am on AM 930 WFMD by logging on to and clicking the “listen live” button! If you can’t tune into the show, there will be a podcast available the week following the show here.

Although the United States is a nation founded by immigrants, Alberto Gonzales and David Strange believe that national immigration policy and enforcement over the past thirty years has been inadequate. This failure by federal leaders has resulted in a widespread introduction of state immigration laws across the country. Gonzales and Strange assert that the solution to current immigration challenges is reform of federal immigration laws, including common sense border control, tougher workplace enforcement, changes to the Immigration and Nationality Act, and a revised visa process.

Gonzales and Strange embrace many provisions of current pending legislation, but are sharply critical of others. Their proposals call for an expansion of the grounds of inadmissibility to foster greater respect of law and to address the problem of visa overstays, while also calling for a restriction on grounds of inadmissibility in other areas to address the large undocumented population and increasing humanitarian crisis. They explore nationality versus citizenship and introduce a pathway to nationality as an alternative to a pathway to citizenship.

This immigration policy blueprint examines the political landscape in Washington and makes the argument that progress will require compromise and the discipline to act with compassion and respect.

This is a book that conservatives and liberals will find compelling in its arguments and the depth of careful, comprehensive research. Yet the issues are so divisive that advocates for change will be taking copious notes from the text and sources. The authors have crafted arguments so skillfully that politicians of every stripe must deal with the implications for revision of the statutes.

—Gordon Morris Bakken, from the foreword

About Mr. Strange:


David N. Strange is a managing partner at the law firm of Whittenburg, Strange, & Walker, P.C., and adjunct professor of law at the Texas Tech University.

Alberto R. Gonzales is former counsel to the President and United States Attorney General under the George W. Bush administration. He is currently the Dean of the Belmont University College of Law, where he holds the Doyle Rogers Distinguished Chair of Law.

The Stronghold: How republicans captured Congress but Surrendered the White House

Thursday, February 12th, 2015

The Stronghold

Once the party of presidents, the GOP in recent elections has failed to pull together convincing national majorities. Republicans have lost four of the last six presidential races and lost the popular vote in five of the last six. In their lone victory, the party incumbent won—during wartime—by the slimmest of margins. In this fascinating and important book, Thomas Schaller examines national Republican politics since President Ronald Reagan left office in 1989. From Newt Gingrich’s ascent to Speaker of the House through the defeat of Mitt Romney in 2012, Schaller traces the Republican Party’s institutional transformation and its broad consequences, not only for Republicans but also for America.

Gingrich’s “Contract with America” set in motion a vicious cycle, Schaller contends: as the GOP became more conservative, it became more Congress-centered, and as its congressional wing grew more powerful, the party grew more conservative. This dangerous loop, unless broken, may signal a future of increasing radicalization, dependency on a shrinking pool of voters, and less viability as a true national party. In a thought-provoking conclusion, the author discusses repercussions of the GOP decline, among them political polarization and the paralysis of the federal government.

Thomas Schaller

Thomas F. Schaller is a professor of political science at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and author of “Whistling Past Dixie.”  He writes a political column for the Baltimore Sun and currently resides in Washington, DC.

Mr. Schaller will be joining me on Your Financial Editor this Saturday 3/14/2015. You can listen live from anywhere Saturday morning at 8am on AM 930 WFMD by logging on to and clicking the “listen live” button! If you can’t tune into the show, there will be a podcast available the week following the show here.

The Colder War

Friday, November 21st, 2014

the colder war


How the massive power shift in Russia threatens the political dominance of the United States

There is a new cold war underway, driven by a massive geopolitical power shift to Russia that went almost unnoticed across the globe. In The Colder War: How the Global Energy Trade Slipped from America’s Grasp, energy expert Marin Katusa takes a look at the ways the western world is losing control of the energy market, and what can be done about it.

Russia is in the midst of a rapid economic and geopolitical renaissance under the rule of Vladimir Putin, a tenacious KGB officer turned modern-day tsar. Understanding his rise to power provides the keys to understanding the shift in the energy trade from Saudi Arabia to Russia. This powerful new position threatens to unravel the political dominance of the United States once and for all.

  • Discover how political coups, hostile takeovers, and assassinations have brought Russia to the center of the world’s energy market
  • Follow Putin’s rise to power and how it has led to an upsetting of the global balance of trade
  • Learn how Russia toppled a generation of robber barons and positioned itself as the most powerful force in the energy market
  • Study Putin’s long-range plans and their potential impact on the United States and the U.S. dollar

If Putin’s plans are successful, not only will Russia be able to starve other countries of power, but the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) will replace the G7 in wealth and clout. The Colder War takes a hard look at what is to come in a new global energy market that is certain to cause unprecedented impact on the U.S. dollar and the American way of life.


Meet the Author:

Marin Katusa is one of the leading experts on–and most successful portfolio managers in–the energy and resource exploration sectors.

Katusa has rubbed elbows with energy ministers, generals, oligarchs, and billionaires all over the world. He’s strapped on a flak jacket to survey lucrative projects in Russia, Iraq, Ukraine, Kuwait, Mongolia, Kosovo, Colombia, and many other dangerous yet resource-rich jurisdictions that require the protection of heavily armed private security forces.

Starting out as a mathematics professor, Katusa left academics to apply his models to portfolio management. His funds are among the top-performing in the resource sector over the last five years in Canada. He’s a regular contributor to the Business News Network (BNN), and has been interviewed by global media outlets such as CNBC, RT, CBC, Bloomberg, and Forbes.

Katusa first became interested in the energy sector through investing. He began in mining, shifted to Uranium, and began to see the unconventional energy sector as a much bigger story.

Since 2007, Katusa has been serving as the chief energy investment strategist for Casey Research. He is one of the most active financiers for early-stage, junior resource companies in Canada, and was the lead financier in the first two financings for Cuadrilla Resources, now one of the largest and most successful unconventional natural-gas plays in the UK. He also structured the financing and the sale of Turkana and the world-class 10BB oil block in Kenya to Africa Oil, a Lundin-held company with a market capitalization of over C$2 billion. Katusa is a founding director of Copper Mountain, Canada’s third-largest copper mine.

Over the years, Katusa has been involved in raising over C$1 billion in capital for early-stage and producing resource companies.

Katusa speaks fluent Serbian and Croatian, and is conversant in Russian. A graduate of the University of British Columbia, he lives in Vancouver.

Marin Katusa will be joining me this Saturday on Your Financial Advisor! You can listen live from anywhere Saturday morning at 8am on AM 930 WFMD by logging on to and clicking the “listen live” button! If you can’t tune into the show, there will be a podcast available the week following the show here.




Turnout was UP in key Senate races

Monday, November 10th, 2014


Kyle Hauptman

 | AEIdeas

Just a short post to note that low voter turnout is NOT, despite what some observers are implying, responsible for the GOP takeover of the Senate.

President Obama himself yesterday emphasized the “two-thirds who didn’t vote,” when discussing the new GOP-controlled Senate. Low turnout may have impacted some GOP wins for governor, but it seems a stretch to claim that lower-than-normal turnout for a midterm election cost Harry Reid his Senate majority leader job. Compared to presidential years, turnout is always lower for midterm elections, including in years like 1986 & 2006 when Democrats gained Senate seats. But were this year’s key Senate races decided by low turnout? Not so much.

Some of this narrative got started when Nate Silver’s posted the map above under the headline “Preliminary Turnout Numbers Are Way Down From 2010 And 2012.”The map itself compares turnout in the midterm elections of 2010 & 2014. Notice anything about the states with key Senate races?

Let’s look at the eight states labeled Toss Ups by Real Clear Politics:

State (incumbent)           Turnout change vs. 2010

  • AK: Begich (D)                                   +3.4%
  • CO: Udall (D)                                      +1.8%
  • GA: Open (R)                                     -5.7%
  • IA: Open (D)                                       +0.7%
  • KS: Roberts (R)                                  +1.1%
  • LA: Landrieu (D)                                +5.0%
  • NH: Shaheen (D)                              +3.1%
  • NC: Hagan (D)                                    +1.5%

That’s right, the map shows turnout increased in seven of eight Toss Up states. These seven states alone are essentially responsible for Democrats’ losing their majority, since this list includes five GOP pickups (assuming Sullivan is certified in AK) plus a good shot at a sixth after Louisiana’s runoff. It’s not even clear that Georgia had lower turnout, since the map above uses preliminary data and yet the actual results show turnout almost identical to 2010 at 2.56 million.

For good measure, the only other GOP pickup in a state not rated “Safe” by RCP occurred in Arkansas (rated “Lean GOP”). Yup, the map shows turnout up there was well, +3.7%.

As for why overall turnout was down across the country? Plenty of reasons are speculated upon, but it should be noted that California alone (11% of the country’s registered voters) is responsible for 27% of the total turnout drop, according to the data used for 538’s map. And obviously this year not only did CA have no Senate race but Gov. Jerry Brown won by 17% against a low-on-cashopponent. Compare that to 2010, when record amounts of cash were spent (especially by Meg Whitman) on barn-burner elections for both Senate and Governor.

Throw in lower-interest races in New York (no tight races either year but had both Senate & Gov races in 2010 vs. just gubernatorial race in 2014) & Texas (2010 had a hotly-contestedgubernatorial race vs. two boring Sen & Gov elections this year) and you’ve got 40% of the entire US drop-off.

Original Source of Article:

The Intolerance Behind Elizabeth Warren’s 11 Commandments of Progressivism

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

In a recent speech of which Politico claims absolutely energized the “Progressive” left, Elizabeth Warren laid out her so-called 11 Commandments of Progressivism.

In what follows, I will first give Warren’s “commandment,” and then explain how each so-called commandment cannot be implemented without official state violence and coercion. I emphasize that I am not going to use hyperbole or paint Warren in a false light. I’m sure she is a nice person when one meets her. My point is not that Warren is nice or nasty, but rather that she espouses a political economy that is based on political favors for some coupled with fierce intolerance toward many.

The 11 Commandments:

1. We believe that Wall Street needs stronger rules and tougher enforcement, and we’re willing to fight for it.

For all of the financial misconduct that we have seen from Wall Street, the problem isn’t a lack of regulation or a dearth of enforcement. No, the problem is that Wall Street is linked at the hip to the federal government and to the Federal Reserve System, which then uses Wall Street as a mechanism to pump cheap money into the system. At the same time, the state then protects Wall Street firms from the consequences that occur when investments in the financial bubbles the Fed creates fail.

Progressive Populists like Warren claim to abhor the tax-funded bailouts, but they don’t object to the inflationary actions of the Fed, nor do they call for a halt to the symbiotic relationship between Wall Street and K Street. Yes, they might complain about the relationship, but at no time has Warren or any of her ilk ever called for a severing of the ties between Washington and Wall Street.

What Warren actually is saying is this: We want the state to have an even greater role in directing investments and determining the outcomes, and when the outcomes invariably fail — as we can expect central planning to do — then we demand ever more of the same. The results may be economically disastrous, but they provide marvelous political theater.

Warren never will endorse free markets on Wall Street — and neither will Wall Street, which I believe to be instructive. Nothing would provide better discipline for the markets than free markets, but Warren is not interested in market discipline; she is interested in the markets being forced to provide outcomes that violate economic laws, and then demanding even more government coercion when disasters inevitably occur.

2. We believe in science, and that means that we have a responsibility to protect this Earth.

Warren obviously is referring to the fact that not all scientists believe we are in the middle of catastrophic global warming — and that makes her mad. In fact, it makes Warren so angry that she wants the state to intimidate scientists that don’t go along with Washington’s pre-determined “scientific” outcomes.

One does not “believe in” or “not believe in” science. Science is not — or should not be — a deity. Science is about using certain consistent methods to ascertain and test various theories about the natural world. It also is about determining probabilities for certain, repeatable events and it should never be hijacked by politicians for their own uses.

If Warren truly did “believe” in science, then she would have no objection to scientists like Roy Spencer and Judith Curry explaining in public forums — without harassment — why they believe the current fears that Warren promotes about “climate change” are overblown. You see, in real science, the “discussion” never is over. Skepticism is the very heart of the scientific method, something that the “discussion-is-over” people like Warren refuse to hear.

What Warren means is that governments should fund scientific research, and that the research should reflect what politicians like Warren want it to reflect. America’s current obesity crisis, for example, is linked directly to government bullying of scientists almost forty years ago, forcing them to accept the government’s “new” nutrition standards, including the government’s “war on fat,” which has been disastrous.

3. We believe that the Internet shouldn’t be rigged to benefit big corporations, and that means real net neutrality.

I am no expert on “net neutrality,” but I don’t think that Warren is much interested in protecting the interests and rights of ordinary individuals who use the Internet, as she remains strangely silent on illegal spying done by the CIA and NSA which does absolutely nothing to protect ordinary citizens.

4. We believe that no one should work full-time and still live in poverty, and that means raising the minimum wage.

Translation: If you are willing to work for pay that is below what the government demands you be given, then you are breaking the law. And what about those people whose productivity does not match what Warren believes the minimum wage should be? They are out of luck.

What Warren does not say is that the original purpose for imposing the minimum wage was never about getting people out of poverty. Instead, Progressives wanted to ensure that certain groups of people, blacks and Eastern Europeans living in the USA, would be priced out of the labor market. Given the unemployment rate for black teenagers in this country is at an all-time-high, one just might think that the Progressive strategy has worked very well.

It is the business owners that Warren so despises who have to foot the bill of increased labor costs, and if they cannot, then the business closes, but Warren would of course not lose a dime. Lest one thinks she has any respect for entrepreneurs and people who have invested, worked, and risked their own finances in order to start and maintain businesses, Warren has this to say, according to Progressive columnist E.J. Dionne:

“There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own,” she said. “Nobody. You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear: You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for.” It was all part of “the underlying social contract,” she said, a phrase politicians don’t typically use.

Entrepreneurs, in Warren-speak, are social and economic parasites that should get no credit at all for anything. They just take advantage of government services and business success comes almost automatically and the entrepreneurs then extract wealth from the community via profits.


5. We believe that fast-food workers deserve a livable wage, and that means that when they take to the picket line, we are proud to fight alongside them.

When I was fifteen years old, I worked at a tourist attraction near Chattanooga called Rock City. No one — including the politicians — believed that I should have been making enough to live on my own. Likewise, the vast majority of fast food workers are not people trying to live independently; they are earning money to help pay for their expenses, save for college, make car payments, and the like.

First, Warren does not even understand what we mean by jobs and wages. A “job” is the application of labor to the creation of either a producer’s good or a consumer’s good. A wage is the payment given to the owner of the labor services for that particular service. It is nothing more than that.

Second, by insisting wrongly that employment is essentially a welfare scheme, Warren disconnects labor from production. To use a Marxian term, she endorses alienation as a labor doctrine in which the worker is alienated from any realities regarding his or her job. According to Warren, the job is nothing more than an income stream to the worker, with the stream having no connection at all with the value of what the worker produces.

If we were to take the reality — based upon laws of economics — of Warren’s statement, we get this: “If you are willing to work for less than what the state declares to be a ‘living wage,’ you will not be permitted to work at all, and should you seek employment without permission from the state, we will treat you like a criminal.” Unfortunately, in Warren’s new order, there would be lots of labor criminals, people working off-the-books and ultimately marginalized people turning toward the fringe occupations that the state declares to be illegal.

6. We believe that students are entitled to get an education without being crushed by debt.

Student loan burdens are becoming greater, but perhaps we need to ask why that is so instead of telling students that someone else — often someone not privileged to have had a college education — will foot their bills. If pushed hard enough, I suspect that Warren would agree with fellow leftists that college should be both tuition-free and relatively open-accessed. Furthermore, in their minds, that should be no problem. (I have spoken to enough faculty members where I teach to know that a lot of leftist Democrats believe that colleges should not charge tuition or anything else, period.)

At the very least, it would seem, Warren believes that individuals that rack up large education debts should not fully have to pay those debts, with the payments, instead, falling to the taxpayers, and even though it is quite clear that the personal “profits” from a college education tend to be privatized. Like the Wall Street firms and other crony capitalist outfits, Warren now wants an entire country in which certain politically-favored groups (and firms) find their profits privatized, but their losses socialized, and paid for by everyone else.

7. We believe that after a lifetime of work, people are entitled to retire with dignity, and that means protecting Social Security, Medicare, and pensions.

Interestingly, while shilling for increases in these things (which, as always, are covered fully by taxpayers who will be forced to supply the “dignity” to others), Warren is not willing to afford “dignity” to entrepreneurs who saved, took big risks, and took chances with their lives to provide goods and services for the benefit of consumers.

8. We believe — I can’t believe I have to say this in 2014 — we believe in equal pay for equal work.

Warren is not speaking of payment for men and women who do the same job in a market setting. In fact, there is a lot of evidence that shows that single women tend to outearn single men.

No, Warren is speaking of a term called “comparable worth,” in which government authorities determine the “equality” of jobs. Such a process is utterly politicized, so what Warren really means is that the state will determine the so-called worth of a job, and then force employers to pay accordingly.

9. We believe that equal means equal, and that’s true in marriage, it’s true in the workplace, it’s true in all of America.

If Warren meant getting the state out of the marriage business, I would support her point here. However, judging from all of her rhetoric, what she means is that everyone else should be forced to accept her definition of marriage, and anyone who does not will be fined or even arrested for holding onto dissenting views.

Warren constantly agitates for a thoroughly politicized society in which the state decides what is valuable, what is “legitimate,” and what kind of thinking should be permitted. When former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich this year was forced out because he had contributed some money to a “man-and-woman” marriage initiative in California in 2008, it sent a clear and chilling message to workplaces everywhere in the US: the only thing that matters is politics.

It didn’t matter that Eich was a major player in helping develop the Internet and his skills will be sorely missed. No, the Elizabeth Warrens of this world care only about a person’s political views. (Maybe that is one reason Warren has expressed such hatred of successful entrepreneurs: they succeed outside of political ideology.)

10. We believe that immigration has made this country strong and vibrant, and that means reform.

Because the current immigration situation is a hot-button item that I would prefer not to touch, given I can see arguments on both sides, I only will say that Warren’s vision of unlimited immigration into an absolute welfare state would be a disaster. Warren has shown no proclivity to putting any limits on welfarism, and given her political record, I believe she sees new immigrants as a source of political support exchanged for welfare benefits.

11. And we believe that corporations are not people, that women have a right to their bodies. We will overturn Hobby Lobby and we will fight for it. We will fight for it!

The Hobby Lobby decision was quite limited, and the implications of the decision certainly did not call for the totally unhinged reaction Warren and others had. The US Supreme Court did not preventanyone from receiving birth control devices or anything else. All it said was that there were four kinds of devices or chemical compounds which abortion opponents call abortifacients that certain employers could be exempt from providing free of charge for employees.

It does not prohibit Hobby Lobby employees from purchasing those particular chemicals or devices; the decision only says that Hobby Lobby does not have to pay for them, given the religious nature of the company’s owners and the fact that it is a tightly-held corporation.

Please understand what Warren is saying: the owners of Hobby Lobby have no rights. They are not people; only those with views similar to Elizabeth Warren have rights.

Original Article can be found at:

Note: The views expressed in Daily Articles on are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute.

William Anderson is an associated scholar of the Mises Institute and teaches economics at Frostburg State University. Send him mail. See William L. Anderson’s article archives.

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Understanding the Bitcoin Saga—Is it really the “Currency of the Future”?

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Bitcoin by definition is: “a peer-to-peer payment system and digital currency introduced as open source software in 2009. It is a cryptocurrency, so-called because it uses cryptography to control the creation and transfer of money.” Understanding the Bitcoin can be somewhat of a challenge depending on who you read and trust. To help us understand the Bitcoin with some historical and legal insight is this week’s guest:  Thomas J. Schetelich.


Listen from anywhere Saturday morning @ 8am on AM 930 WFMD by logging onto and clicking the listen live button! Can’t make it? Don’t worry, our shows are recorded and you can listen to them here (shows are generally posted several days after airing)


About this week’s guest:


Mr. Schetelich is one of the founding principals in the law firm of Ferguson, Schetelich & Ballew in Baltimore, Maryland. He heads both the firm’s corporate and business law practice and its personal legal services department. Mr. Schetelich concentrates his work in the fields of business planning, business litigation, trusts and estates, and family matters.  He devotes much of his practice to assisting charitable and religious organizations; and is an author and frequent speaker on the subject of Maryland Church Law.

Mr. Schetelich is highly regarded by attorneys and the community at large for his legal skills and community service. He holds an AV rating from Martindale Hubble, awarded by peer review, for the highest standards of professional skill and ethical practice. He has repeatedly been named a Maryland Super Lawyer.  He manages national representations for real estate and hospitality clients.

Mr. Schetelich also has extensive court room and trial experience, in both Maryland state courts and federal courts. He has appeared before both Maryland appellate courts and has been admitted for argument in three separate Circuits of the United States Court of Appeals. He has managed an extensive toxic tort defense as the lead Baltimore City attorney for asbestos defendants.

Mr. Schetelich devotes much of his practice to assisting churches and Christian ministries throughout Maryland.  He is the National President of the Christian Professional Network and the editor of its monthly publication CPN On Point.  He has served as the commentator on Religion and the Law, a regular radio feature. He serves on the Board of Directors for The Baltimore School of the Bible (where he was an instructor for over 25 years), for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, for Christian Missions in Many Lands, and for The Maryland Bible Society. He chairs the board for the Greater Baltimore Center for Pregnancy Concerns.  Mr. Schetelich has been honored both by Baltimore City and the Maryland General Assembly for outstanding citizenship in serving the citizens of Baltimore.

Professional Affiliations:

  • Maryland State Bar Association (Estate and Trust Section, Tax Section)
  • Bar Association of Baltimore City


  • Washington and Lee University School of Law Juris Doctor awarded (magna cum laude) in 1980
  • Burks Scholar Teaching Fellow, John Marshall Research Fellow (Order of the Coif)
  • Kean College of New Jersey, Bachelor of Arts awarded in 1977 (summa cum laude)

Bar Admissions:

  • United States Supreme Court
  • Maryland
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
  • Fourth, Eleventh, Federal, and D.C. Circuit Courts of Appeals

An Inside look at the Federal Reserve— Jim Bruce the writer and director of Money for Nothing unveils the scary and hard-hitting facts of their doings. This week on Your Financial Editor:

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

With the 100-year anniversary of the Federal Reserve behind us, the once distant fear that this central banking system would turn into a profit for the already wealthy and forget the general public and private bankers it was established to help is now, an all too concerning reality. Jim Bruce takes us through the history and interworking of The Fed.

Listen from anywhere, by logging on to and clicking the listen live button! This Saturday morning @ 8am on AM 930 WFMD.


About this week’s guest:

Money For Nothing is Jim Bruce’s directorial debut.  Jim was Editor/Writer/Co-Producer of Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars – finalist for the 2006 International Documentary Association’s Feature Film of the Year. Jim has also worked as an editor on acclaimed documentaries (including The King of Kong and Dambe: The Mali Project), and as an assistant editor on Hollywood films such as Kinsey, Insomnia, X-Men: The Last Stand, and The Incredible Hulk. He was a Visiting Professor at Middlebury College in 2007.

Jim has been a student of financial markets for many years, and began writing a newsletter in 2006 warning about the oncoming financial crisis. His short trades in 2007 and 2008 helped finance a significant portion of Money For Nothing’s budget.

Jim has appeared on CNBC, MSNBC, NPR, Bloomberg TV, and Fox Business, and has spoken at Harvard Business School and the Dutch Central Bank.

MONEY FOR NOTHING is a feature-length documentary about the Federal Reserve – made by a Team of AFI, Sundance, and Academy Award winners – that seeks to unveil America’s central bank and its impact on our economy and our society.

Current and former senior Fed officials, prominent economists, investors and traders provide unprecedented access and take viewers behind the curtain to debate the future of the world’s most powerful financial institution.

Digging beneath the surface of the 2008 crisis, Money For Nothing is the first film to ask why so many facets of our financial system seemed to self-destruct at the same time. For many economists and senior Fed officials, the answer is clear: the same Fed that put out 2008’s raging financial fire actually helped light the match years before.

As the global financial system continues to falter, the Federal Reserve finds itself at a crossroads. The choices it makes will greatly influence the kind of world our children and grandchildren inherit. How can the Federal Reserve steer our nation toward a more sustainable path? How can the American people – who the Fed was created to serve – influence an institution whose inner workings they may not understand?

The key tenet underlying Money For Nothing is our belief that a more fully and accurately informed public will promote greater accountability and more effective policies from our central bank – no matter the conclusions any individual draws from the film.

A different look at the 2008 Financial Crisis. This week on Your Financial Editor.

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

The causes of the 2008 Financial Crisis have been discussed in detail over the past few years. But not everyone is in one-hundred percent agreement on these causes. Join me this Saturday as I talk with Peter Wallison about his view on the crises as we discuss his presentation on, “The Causes of the 2008 Financial Crisis: A Dissenting View”

Listen from anywhere by logging onto WFMD and clicking the listen live button – Saturday morning at 8:00 on AM 930 WFMD.

About this week’s guest:

Peter Wallison

Peter J. Wallison, a codirector of AEI’s program on financial policy studies, researches banking, insurance, and securities regulation. As general counsel of the U.S. Treasury Department, he had a significant role in the development of the Reagan administration’s proposals for the deregulation of the financial services industry. He also served as White House counsel to President Ronald Reagan and is the author of Ronald Reagan: The Power of Conviction and the Success of His Presidency(Westview Press, 2002). His other books include Competitive Equity: A Better Way to Organize Mutual Funds (2007); Privatizing Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Banks (2004); The GAAP Gap: Corporate Disclosure in the Internet Age (2000); andOptional Federal Chartering and Regulation of Insurance Companies(2000). He also writes for AEI’s Financial Services Outlook series.

Just how independent is the Federal Reserve? This week on Your Financial Editor.

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

The Federal Reserve operates independent of the government, or at least it was supposed to. My guest this week, Allan Meltzer would beg to differ. Join me this week as Allan and I discuss his paper, “What’s Wrong With the Federal Reserve: What Would Restore Independence?

Listen from anywhere by logging onto WFMD and clicking the listen live button – Saturday morning at 8:00 on AM 930 WFMD.

About this week’s guest:

Mettzer- Allan-HR

Allan H. Meltzer is the Allan H. Meltzer University Professor of Political Economy at Carnegie Mellon University. His research and teaching interests include the history of U.S. monetary policy, size of government, macroeconomics, and international financial reform. He was the founder and chairman of the Shadow Open Market Committee. Meltzer has served as a consultant on economic policy for the Congress, the U.S. Treasury, the Federal Reserve, the World Bank, and the U.S. and foreign governments. He was Chairman of the International Financial Institution Advisory Commission, U.S. Congress, 1999–2000. He was given NABE’s Adam Smith Award in 2003 and is a NABE Fellow. He received A.B. and M.A. degrees from Duke University and a Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles.

An in depth look at the financial crisis through the eyes of one woman. This week on Your Financial Editor.

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

The 2008 financial crisis changed the face of our economy and the impacts are still being felt. What went on behind the scenes as the crisis was unfolding? Why was the crisis handled the way it was? Join me this Saturday for my very special 16th anniversary show as I talk with the former chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Sheila Bair about her first hand experience in dealing with the crisis. We’ll answer these questions and more as we discuss her latest book, Bull by the Horns.

Listen from anywhere by logging onto WFMD and clicking the listen live button – Saturday morning at 8:00 on AM 930 WFMD.

About this week’s guest:


Sheila C. Bair served as the 19th Chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation for a five-year term, from June 2006 through June 2011.

Chairman Bair has an extensive background in banking and finance in a career that has taken her from Capitol Hill, to academia, to the highest levels of government. Before joining the FDIC in 2006, she was the Dean’s Professor of Financial Regulatory Policy for the Isenberg School of Management at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst since 2002.

Other career experience includes serving as Assistant Secretary for Financial Institutions at the U.S. Department of the Treasury (2001 to 2002), Senior Vice President for Government Relations of the New York Stock Exchange (1995 to 2000), a Commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (1991 to 1995), and Research Director, Deputy Counsel and Counsel to Senate Majority Leader Robert Dole (1981 to 1988).

As FDIC Chairman, Ms. Bair presided over a tumultuous period in the nation’s financial sector, working to bolster public confidence and system stability. Determined not to turn to taxpayer borrowing during the crisis, the FDIC managed its losses and liquidity needs entirely through its traditional industry-funded resources. In response to the financial crisis, she developed innovative and stabilizing programs that provided temporary liquidity guarantees to unfreeze credit markets and increased deposit insurance limits. In 2007, she was a singular – and prescient — advocate for systematic loan modifications to stem the coming tidal wave of foreclosures. Ms. Bair also led FDIC resolution strategies to sell failing banks to healthier institutions, while providing credit support of future losses from failed banks’ troubled loans. That strategy saved the Deposit Insurance Fund $40 billion over losses it would have incurred if the FDIC had liquidated those banks.

Under Ms. Bair’s leadership, the FDIC’s powers and authority were significantly expanded by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010. The law extends the FDIC’s resolution process to large, systemically-important financial institutions, effectively attacking the doctrine of too-big-to-fail. The FDIC was also given joint authority to order the restructuring of an entity that cannot demonstrate, through a continually-monitored resolution plan, that it can be unwound.

Ms. Bair has been a leading domestic and international advocate for common-sense capital and leverage ratios, including backing a key provision in Dodd-Frank that requires large financial entities to have capital cushions at least as strong as those that apply to U.S. community banks. As a member of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, in 2006 she called for higher bank capital standards, including an international leverage ratio to constrain growing levels of leverage among the world’s major financial institutions. Financial experts now widely attribute excess leverage as a key driver of the 2008 financial crisis. In 2010, the Basel Committee finally adopted an international leverage ratio.

Ms. Bair’s work at the FDIC also focused on consumer protection and economic inclusion. Under her leadership, the FDIC issued early calls for interagency guidance addressing high-risk mortgages, and was among the first to see the dangers of these unaffordable mortgages to the broader banking sector and to the economy as a whole. She championed the creation of an Advisory Committee on Economic Inclusion, seminal research on small-dollar loan programs, and the formation of broad-based alliances in nine regional markets to bring underserved populations into the financial mainstream.

Known for her focused and effective management style, FDIC employee morale soared under Chairman Bair’s leadership. Under her leadership, the FDIC achieved a #1 ranking of the “Best Places to Work in the Government for 2011,” among more than 200 comparable federal organizations. Moreover, her hands-on approach and strong emphasis on risk management led to the FDIC receiving an “unqualified,” or clean audit from the General Accounting Office (GAO) during every year of her term, a remarkable feat given the many demands on the agency for rapid expansion and loss exposure associated with the resolution of 370 failed banks representing over $650 billion in assets.

Ms. Bair received a number of prestigious honors during her tenure as FDIC Chairman. In 2008 and 2009, Forbes Magazine named Ms. Bair as the second most powerful woman in the world, after Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel. Also in 2008, Ms. Bair topped The Wall Street Journal’s annual 50 “Women to Watch List.” In 2009 she was named one of Time Magazine’s “Time 100″ most influential people; awarded the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award; and received the Hubert H. Humphrey Civil Rights Award. In 2010, Ms. Bair was featured on the cover of TIME Magazine with Mary Schapiro and Elizabeth Warren as “The New Sheriffs of Wall Street.” Also in 2010, she received the Better Business Bureau’s Presidents’ Award. In December of 2011, subsequent to leaving office, Ms. Bair was named by the Washington Post and Harvard University as one of seven of America’s Top Leaders.

A Kansan by birth, Chairman Bair received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas in 1975 and a J.D. from the University of Kansas School of Law in 1978. Ms. Bair was inducted into the University of Kansas Women’s Hall of Fame and received the Distinguished Kansan Award from the Native Sons and Daughters of Kansas in 2011. In May of 2012, she joined fellow KU alumni Robert Dole and Ford CEO Alan Mulally in Lawrence, Ks to receive the first honorary doctoral degrees ever granted by their alma mater. She also holds honorary doctorates from Amherst College and Drexel University.

Chairman Bair has also received several honors for her published work on financial issues, including her educational writings on money and finance for children, and for professional achievement. Among the honors she has received are: Distinguished Achievement Award, Association of Education Publishers (2005); Personal Service Feature of the Year, and Author of the Month Awards, Highlights Magazine for Children (2002, 2003 and 2004); and The Treasury Medal (2002). Her first children’s book, Rock, Brock and the Savings Shock, was published in 2006 and her second, Isabel’s Car Wash, in 2008.

Chairman Bair continues her work on financial policy issues as a Senior Advisor to the Pew Charitable Trusts. She also chairs the Systemic Risk Council (SRC) a public interest group of prominent former government officials and leading financial experts which monitors progress on the implementation of financial reforms in the US. She is a founding board member of the Volcker Alliance, a non-profit organization established by former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Paul Volcker to promote more effective government. In addition, she serves on the prestigious International Advisory Council to the China Bank Regulatory Commission.

Ms. Bair writes a regular column for Fortune Magazine on financial policy matters. She has written a New York Times best seller about her tenure at the FDIC, Bull By the Horns: Fighting to Save Main Street from Wall Street and Wall Street from Itself, published in September of 2012. She is married to Scott P. Cooper and has two children, Preston and Colleen.

Known for her tough-minded independence, Ms. Bair takes care to earn a living in a way that does not compromise her objectivity. She is paid a salary at Pew and receives income from her Fortune column and books. She also serves on the board of Host Hotels, and as an advisor to the public sector practice of the Boston Consulting Group and Alexander Proudfoot, two management consulting firms. In addition, she engages in public speaking. She speaks on a pro bono basis to nonprofits such as 501 c3′s and community groups. She charges a fee to for-profit entities, but does not accept fees from banks which the FDIC insures or bank holding companies which used the FDIC debt guarantee program during the crisis. She will speak to banking organizations as part of her efforts to raise money for special needs children at her daughter’s orphanage in Hunan China.