It continues to amaze me how brazenly hypocritical the Obama Administration can be when it comes to corporations and “corporate greed.” All Obama has to do is insist on a higher tax rate for the rich and all his other actions (or inactions) on behalf of major corporations are given a free pass by the media.
Last night the Wall Street Journal reported that Bob Ryan has a new job. Who is Bob Ryan? His past, before he took his new job, is described thus:
“Mr. Ryan is currently a senior advisor to Shaun Donovan, the secretary for Housing and Urban Development. He joined HUD in 2009 as the first ever chief risk officer at the Federal Housing Administration and served briefly last year as the agency’s acting FHA commissioner. He previously spent 26 years at Freddie Mac.”
But now Mr. Ryan has “moved on,” or perhaps returned home. He is taking a position in the so-called “private sector” with Wells Fargo—a “senior mortgage-banking position.”
This is just another example of how people in government work for the same corporations that they are supposed to regulate and hold accountable. As we have learned recently, Wells Fargo has exposure to derivatives that total at 3.332 trillion dollars! I would like to know what the “first ever chief risk officer” for the Federal Housing Administration feels about that liability. Is it any wonder that these banks hire these officers? They are basically holding a job watching over companies that they know are going to hire them. These corporations provide them with a lucrative means of making a living and saving for retirement. It is an obvious conflict of interest.
But it is a scenario that comes up repeatedly in the Obama Administration, demonstrating that the President’s stance against lobbyists in government was just a campaign promise he had no intention of keeping. Only a week ago, the main architect of Obamacare, Elizabeth Fowler, left government “service” and went to work for “a senior-level position leading ‘global health policy’ at Johnson & Johnson’s government affairs and policy group.” In other words, she is returning to lobbying, just like she did before she entered “government service” in the office of Senator Max Baucus, the point man on Obamacare.
“What was most amazing about all of that was that, before joining Baucus’ office as the point person for the health care bill, Fowler was the Vice President for Public Policy and External Affairs (i.e. informal lobbying) at WellPoint, the nation’s largest health insurance provider (before going to WellPoint, as well as after, Fowler had worked as Baucus’ top health care aide). And when that health care bill was drafted, the person whom Fowler replaced as chief health counsel in Baucus’ office, Michelle Easton, was lobbying for WellPoint as a principal at Tarplin, Downs, and Young.”
Could this be why Obamacare is mostly a big gift to the large insurance companies, forcing people to become their customers whether they want to buy their product or not?
“Whatever one’s views on Obamacare were and are: the bill’s mandate that everyone purchase the products of the private health insurance industry, unaccompanied by any public alternative, was a huge gift to that industry; as Wheeler wrote at the time: “to the extent that Liz Fowler is the author of this document, we might as well consider WellPoint its author as well.”
So Liz Fowler ends up being rewarded for her labors at Johnson and Johnson and now Bob Ryan gets the same sort of reward from Wells Fargo. And because this sort of corporate cronyism is perpetrated by Democrats, the mainstream media doesn’t even care.