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Joe Biden agrees with Obama on new bank fees, and he wouldn't mind getting some of your money too


Vice President Joe Biden suffered through warmer weather in Florida today and this past weekend when he met with some Haitians and spoke at a fundraiser (he likes the Obama administration's work so far).

Biden made some Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday remarks this morning before taking the rest of the day to work his way back to Washington.

But meanwhile, Biden quietly dispatched a little-noticed e-mail via President Obama's ongoing campaign organization, Organizing for America. The e-mail, headlined "We want our money back," is a thinly veiled fundraising plea for OFA wrapped in a Biden endorsement of the administration's plan to impose large fees on large banks.

Using another wonderful Washington phrase that really means "taxes," Obama's new plan is called the Financial Crisis Responsibility Fee (FCRF).

Wow! Responsibility. Who could ever oppose that?

Well, according to Biden, who doesn't seem to be allowed to speak much in uncontrolled public circumstances anymore, the minute after his community organizer boss came up with the....

...plan to hit banks with new charges, especially the particularly evil big banks with their big bonuses, the targeted banks unreasonably began lobbying in Washington to resist the new charge. If you can imagine such a thing.

As if this was a democracy where people and private institutions argue their differences before any votes by legislators who have over time proven willing to accept donations from said people and private institutions. Here's how Biden's e-mail describes the Obama-Biden idea:

The fee would recover every penny loaned to Wall Street during the financial crisis and stop the reckless abuses and excesses that nearly caused the collapse of our financial system in the first place.

But the banking industry -- among the most powerful lobbies in Washington -- is already launching attacks to stop Congress from enacting the proposal.

Barack and I aren't backing down. But to win, we'll need the American people to add their voice right away.

Thankfully, OFA supporters are already signing on to a bold statement of support: "We want our money back -- and we stand with President Obama to make sure we get it."

A couple of things to point out here: Due to the generous donations of a gazillion dollars and scores of millions of votes in 2008, Americans seeking change to believe in already awarded control of the entire federal government to Biden and his fellow Democrats. So who's left to resist their will?

Democrats control the White House teleprompters.

Under the whip of Speaker Nancy "I Am Really Tough" Pelosi, Democrats have a whopping majority in the House of Representatives.

And for a few days more anyway, under the baton of Harry "He Has No Negro Dialect" Reid, the Democrats control 60 filibuster-proof votes in the U.S. Senate. Even if they lose in Massachusetts on Tuesday, Democrats will still control 59 votes after Scott Brown's arrival to sit in the unendowed Kennedy chair.

So exactly whom are these evil big banks drawing into some dark lair with all their dirty money to stymie the new Obama-Biden responsibility fee? Certainly not the disheveled, very minority Republicans whose party chairman is forced to sell his own books to make ends meet and whose congressional members are so powerless they've been summarily banned from amending the pending healthcare bill.

Is it possible that Biden, who was a senator way back when the word Watergate meant a D.C. apartment complex, is railing against the banks' immense influence over his very own political mates on the Hill? Could that conceivably be?

And what's the point of this bold petition statement exactly? Joe and Barack are gonna use it to knock over the Pelosi-Reid cabal that wrote the White House economic stimulus spending bill that hasn't stimulated much just yet? To sign the Obama-Biden petition you need to provide your name, of course, and also -- watch out now! -- your e-mail address. Ah, so a goal is really to expand OFA's expansive e-mail lists.

And then right next to the veepster's name in bright red we discover the real reason for the e-mail. DONATE.

OK, follow along here: So Obama's political fundraising machine wants voluntary donations from Americans, who already make involuntary federal tax donations, to help the Obama Democratic federal government apparatus collect more money from big banks that are spending big money to convince Obama's own Democrats to oppose that idea?

In Washington, this kind of circular thinking actually makes cents.

Crazy thought here, but wouldn't it make more sense and certainly save a lot of money for the president to be, well, presidential with his own wow-now-that's-a-majority party and simply lead them to do what he wants about the bank fees? If these bonused bankers really are so unpopular and never really underwrote the political activities of so many Senate committee chairmen, what's the problem here? As Tiger Woods puts it for Nike, "Just do it!"

So, at a time when the Oval Office occupant Obama has enlisted his two most recent presidential predecessors to raise money from Americans for Haiti relief, Obama's VP is simultaneously out e-mailing millions of Americans to donate money instead or also to Obama's political organization, an arm of the Democratic National Committee. Because all 57 states aren't yet sending quite enough cash to the Capitol.

In Washington, this also makes sense.

Related items:

Joe Biden meets on transparency. But the meeting is closed

Presidents Bush and Clinton appeal for Haiti aid; Also Obama

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo: Getty Images (file).

Comments () | Archives (5)

The comments to this entry are closed.

WOW, someone on the LA Times actually taking the current administration to task for being the socialist conspirators that they are? Maybe, just maybe we are going to see REAL change in Washington this fall. That REAL change would be throwing out every one of the crooks who are so entrenched in the Congress and Senate that they have NO purpose other than to line their own pockets at the expense of our freedom and prosperity.
Are we, as a nation, sick and tired enough to do the right thing?

Uggg. rollseyes.... how does this person even have the ability to write for LA Times? This drivel isn't even worth responding to.

(And yet, "Jeff," here you are like so many thousands of others each day reading and taking the time to respond anyway and help us out. Thanks so much! Smiles warmly.)

Ok mr. president,charge the banks new fees to get some of our money to do what? Where will the retrieved money be spent? A smart president would know, when you add a fee charge to the banks, banks pass that charge on to it's customers in new added monthly fees. These fees hurt the low and middle class workers the most.

Obama is not any different from the rest of the crooks in office. Obama is just a slick talker, and has not done anything for Main Street; except put us in More debt. The only thing different from him than Bush is the color of his skin. The government has always been for Big Business, and not the people. Where are the jobs we were promised? People are still not getting the help, they need to save Their Homes. Wall Street is still getting our money those. Obama will be a One Term President. Obama is just another empty suite helping his friends at our expense. I only voted for him because I did not want McCain, and Palin. As some GOP told me that there was not anyone to vote for at the time everyone was running. I knew then that GOP was going to lose.

Obama is doing the right thing! No one likes change, but eventually change has to be done by someone and he is the one choosing to be that "bad guy".
I say stick it to the banks, they are hogging all the money and if they lend it out this economy would of turned around a long time a go.
If you don't like the fees do what everyone else is doing, go to your local banks, and close all of your accounts at the large banks.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
President Obama
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