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Tracking G20 Theatre

If you’re wanting to keep up with the protests and other events going on in London for the G20 conference, here ya go.  I’m interested to be sure.  I love political theater.

President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama will meet with the Queen this afternoon.


Via the Canadian media – ‘Follow the action at the G20 protests.’


G-20 protesters clashed with riot police in downtown London on Wednesday, breaking into the heavily guarded Royal Bank of Scotland and smashing its windows. Earlier, they tried to storm the Bank of England and pelted police with eggs and fruit.



American Group International becomes American International Underwriters, Limited?

Think that’ll help? Really?

I’m Tellin’ Ya – Stepping Up to the Plate Isn’t IT!

And the Senate passed it – 74-25.

Finance Bill Passes in the Senate

The Senate approved the bill on the federal intervention in the financial markets by a vote of 74-25. Sen. McCain (R-AZ), Sen. Obama (D-IL), and Sen. Biden (D-DE) voted for the bill.

Whoa – just alerted to this by some fellow Agonistas.

“Paulson has made it clear he will recommend a veto of any bill that contained a clear provision that said if Americans did not own the asset on September 20th that it can’t be sold to the Treasury.

Hundreds of billions of dollars are going to bail out foreign investors. They know it, they demanded it and the bill has been carefully written to make sure that can happen.”

Video from CNBC….  it’s about foreign investors.  It’s not about us at all.   (More information from an Agonista talking about it all here.)

Barack Obama has this SO wrong; they all do.

Grandstanding Over

Ohhh…. Guess Big John will be going to the debate after all, un-huh.

As Blue Texan at Firedoglake aptly describes: ‘McCain Inserts Self into Financial Crisis, Fails Miserably, will attend debate.’ BT references this remark from Ellen Tauscher (D-CA) regarding McCain’s involvement:

He goes to a meeting and all of a sudden, we lose all the Republicans who have been working with us for the last five days.

Good looking out at putting ‘Country First’ ya dumb fuck.

Oh – and wander over and read what Digby writes today as well, quoting CNN last night about the ‘economic crisis’ and the ReThugs..

That’s pretty scary stuff that they’re thinking about party right now and not country, is that what you’re saying?” responded host Anderson Cooper.

“I think they’re, yes, they’re thinking about themselves,” said Rollins. “I think they don’t think that the threat is as great as a lot of other people do.”

Because as the question Digby poses, as always and has been – At what point to progressives put away the kumbaaya and recognize that we are not dealing with people who act in the nation’s best interest?

The Status Quo in Washington

What is IT about people who say things that are so quintessentially about them and they apparently don’t see that.  I was watching Larry King for a few minutes.  Up front he had Paul Begala, Michelle Bachman (R-Hell)(R-MN), and two others, political strategists: the Democrat, a woman (Hilary), the Republican, a man (Larry) – all discussing the attempted bailout of Wall Street.  (Chris Rock will be up later, but I’ll be back at work.)

The man had the nerve to say that people (that’s the common folks like you and me out here somewhere in America) aren’t so much angry at the Democrats or the Republicans.  They – or we – are really angry at the ‘status quo’ in Washington.  Now – I’m sorry – who’s been the “status quo” in Washington for the past, almost, eight years?

Really?  Funny thing listening to Washington Journal this morning AND yesterday morning on CSPAN, people were mentioning names and one specific political party and it wasn’t so much about the Democrats as it was about the free market-loving, deregulation happy smug asses parading around as ReThugs hoping to bilk the American taxpayers – yet again.

More on Tamarack’s Bid for $42.5 Million From Idaho

Now if you were the manager or controller, say, of a very large financial concern that had many, many dollars to ‘give’ in the form of loans, would ya give it to Tamarack right about now?  Especially after this.

The majority owners of Tamarack Resort have filed for bankruptcy to avoid foreclosure by Credit Suisse, which is owed more than $262 million from loans the resort took out for construction.

Perhaps the name ‘Credit Suisse’ leaps out at you…. but it shouldn’t be confused with – Société Générale, who had a “rogue trader” running the show for a few minutes. Société Générale is French; Credit Suisse is, well, Swiss.  However, now, Credit Suisse is having its own problems with “pricing errors.”

Credit Suisse said its internal review had “identified mismarkings and pricing errors by a small number of traders in certain positions in our structured credit trading business “. The bank did not detail the problem.

Oh, uh-huh.



Sooo – that’s a bit on the big picture background.  Now for Tamarack.  Tamarack is investigating other options in the way of other financing avenues.

One of current places Tamarack is looking toward is the Municipal Bond Bank (MBB) for the State of Idaho.   The chair of the MBB is the state treasurer; Idaho’s state treasurer is none other than Ron Crane.  (Some of us remember Ron Crane.)  Now this is for infrastructure needs, more specifically – sewer and water.

Soooo – now that the major owners/investors of Tamarack have filed for bankruptcy protection, where’s this leave the loan application with Municipal Bond Bank of the state of Idaho?  Welll, it is, of course, up to the board according to the State Treasurer’s office.   Investment Management in the Treasurer’s Office was very helpful and quite encouraging in relaying the importance of the public’s involvement as we are, after all, taxpayers. They stressed, the meetings are always open to the public.

The next meeting: March 4, 2008 at 1:30 pm in Room 208, 2nd Floor of the Borah Post Office (Federal Building) – downtown – . The state treasurer’s office temporary quarters while the Capitol is being renovated. The street address is 304 N. 8th Street.


As an aside – The North Lake Recreational Sewer and Water District is the entity that Tamarack is approaching to help with their infrastructure needs in further construction and development. North Lake’s involvement is no more partisian than, say, Boise’s Bench Sewer District. North Lake covers the property on the west side of Cascade lake up to Tamarack.

Following Tamarack’s Loan Request

[Update via New West: Tamarack’s Investor/Owners filed for bankruptcy protection last week.]

After inquiring from a financial whiz I know, who – incidentally – knew nothing about Municipal Bond Banks or the like, I decided to call the state treasurer’s office to find out how the scoop on Tamarack’s seeking to “persuade the state to guarantee a $42.5 million low-interest loan to a local sewer district for a major expansion of sewer and drinking water systems that serve the ski and golf community and others in the area.”

As I learned today, the MBB is a conduit for the acquisition of financing.  With an educational background and degrees in the biological sciences, history, and religious studies, I know practically nothing about finance; I barely balance my checkbook.  However in reading this story, I found this almost unbelievable, and even asinine:

The bond bank generally lends on the condition that Idaho can intercept state sales tax revenue destined for the local government, in the rare instance that government no longer can make its payments.

In this case, the loan applicant, the North Lake Recreational Sewer and Water District, doesn’t get state tax money. So the resort has offered the property as security instead.

Thus, Tamarack will offer as collateral, land, to help the North Lake Recreational Sewer and Water District case when making the presentation to the MBB.  But how was the state to get the repayment funds from Tamarack?

The MBB board will be meeting on March 4, 2008 in Room 208 (2nd floor)  of the State Treasurer’s temporary office – in the Borah Post Office downtown – at 1:30 pm.