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September 2008

America, WATCH World Events!

By Bob Barney

I hope America starts to wake up what is happening, and what we must do to really fix it. First off, if your congressperson voted for the bailout of the rich and famous, throw them out of their office this year. I don't care what party they belong to. A yes vote simply meant that they are probably on the payroll of big business and big banks. Frequent readers already know that I have been on a rampage against big government AND big business. Today, we almost had the end of the American way of life. Yes, I know many out there lost a bundle today in your 401K's and your stocks, but that pain is short lived and maybe some of us will wake up and understand that you can never win investing against the "big boys" on Wall Street. It wasn't just Martha Stewart caught up in insider trading, and you can count on that.

It is important to grasp that we must watch world events very carefully because God prophesies that there will be a worldwide set of plagues that will eventually bring us a global, Hitler type dictator that will lead the entire world to Armageddon and the return of Christ. I do not think that this is that time, but do not be fooled! It very well could be that time, and we must stay prepared for the signs that God will send us when that day draws near. A global depression, resulting in famines in the USA, Europe and most of the modern world is a pivotal event to look out for. This will, like 1930's Germany, give rise to a beast of a ruler that much like Obama will promise to fix the entire world's pandemics. I do not think Mr. Obama is that leader. I think the leader will come out of Germany. A second Hitler type. Obama, if elected (and I strongly doubt it) the only role in world events would be to totally destroy America, which the Bible clearly depicts will happen! You are not told this by our leaders, or in our schools but the United States of America is the lost tribe of Israel called Joseph! (plaintruthtoday@aol.com  e-mail  for a free article showing exactly that this can be proven!)

God says that in the end days, America will go into a captivity and the aliens in our own land will RULE OVER US! Check Leviticus 26! It's right there! If we wake up and stop our leaders from selling this country to our enemies and committing treason against us, we can delay this from happening. AMERICA, wake up! Read the stories every day in The Plain Truth. In tomorrows The Plain Truth, I will have a story from Germany, and what they are saying about the future of America and you will be amazed to see that they agree with what I am saying!

I predicted two weeks ago, that this Wall Street mess was going to be breaking news, that everyone would eventually pick up on. All we have heard in the past week is the truth of what really caused this crisis. LOANS TO MOSTLY MINORITY AMERICANS so Democrats could buy their votes with YOUR money! Was I right?


Does Obama Really Believe in Equality for Women?

By Bob Barney

Women felt rejected by Hillary not even being considered by Obama as his Veep nominee. Could it be the bad blood between them, or was it just old-fashioned sexism? "Barack Obama claims he's for equal pay for women, but women working in his Senate office earn an average of $9,000 less than men, while women in John McCain's Senate office earn an average of nearly $2,000 more than men. American women understand that real leadership is about what you do, not just what you say." -- says McCain-Palin spokeswoman Crystal Benton

Crystal Benton gives these "facts" concerning Obama's treatment of women working for him:

FACT CHECK: Records Show Women Working In Obama's Senate Office Were Paid Average Of $9,000 Less Than Men

According To Senate Records, Women Working In Obama's Senate Office Paid An Average Of $9,000 Less Than Men, As "Obama Pays Women Just 83 Cents For Every Dollar His Men Make." "Obama's commitment to federally mandated pay equity stretches from the Rockies to Wall Street and beyond. And yet it seems to have eluded his Senate office. Compensation figures for his legislative staff reveal that Obama pays women just 83 cents for every dollar his men make." (Deroy Murdock, Op-Ed, "Obama Only Talks Good Game On Gender Pay Equity," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 9/11/08)   

  • Columnist Deroy Murdock: "In short, these statistics suggest that John McCain is more than fair with his female employees, while Barack Obama -- at the expense of the women who work for him -- quietly perpetuates the very same pay-equity divide that he loudly denounces. Of all people, the Democratic standard bearer should understand that equal pay begins at home." (Deroy Murdock, Op-Ed, "Obama Only Talks Good Game On Gender Pay Equity," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 9/11/08) 

FACT CHECK: From October 2007 Through March 2008, Full Time Male Employees In The Senate Office Of Sen. Barack Obama Earned An Average Annual Salary Of $9,226.49 More Per Employee Than Full Time Female Employees:   

  • The Average Annual Salary For Male Employees Employed In The Senate Office Of Sen. Barack Obama Was $54,379.16 compared to $45,152.57 for female employees. (Legistorm Website, www.legistorm.com, Accessed 9/1/08)   
  • Of The Five Highest Paid Obama Staffers, Only One Is Female. (Legistorm Website, www.legistorm.com, Accessed 9/1/08) 
  • Of The 20 Highest Paid Obama Staffers, Only 7 Are Female. (Legistorm Website, www.legistorm.com, Accessed 9/1/08)

FACT CHECK: From October 2007 Through March 2008, Full Time Male Employees In The Senate Office Of Sen. John McCain Earned An Average Annual Salary Of Nearly $1,942.21 Less Per Employee Than Full Time Female Employees: 

  • The Average Annual Salary For Male Employees Employed In The Senate Office Of Sen. John McCain Was $53,936.15 compared to $55,878.36 for female employees. (Legistorm Website, www.legistorm.com, Accessed 9/1/08)
  • Of The Five Highest Paid McCain Staffers, Three Are Female. (Legistorm Website, www.legistorm.com, Accessed 9/1/08) 
  • Of The 20 Highest Paid McCain Staffers, 13 Are Female. (Legistorm Website, www.legistorm.com, Accessed 9/1/08)

Like many other lies expressed in this campaign, the Democrats just don't practice what they preach. They attacked Hillary, they attack Palin and now they even attack a women who was saved from a botched abortion trying to shut her up. They have "goon" squads threating to arrest anyone that "lies" about the Senator (they never read #1 of the Bill of Rights) so maybe Obama has more in common with Hitler than just mesmerizing 200,000 screaming Germans!


Martinsville Live Update Heat Race Coverage and notes

Restart / Caution Lap 1

So we'll try this again.  Field comes off 4, flag flies and we're underway.

Great start for Daniels and he'll motor off of 4 with the lead.  Carroll runs second, and Pressley is third.

 Caution comes out with the 91 of Jonathan Cash hits the turn 4 wall *hard*.  Hall and Cook were both also involved with that, but hard to see from here what the cause wasCash's car is totaled.  Both Hall and Cook look to be alright

 Restart will be: 30, 90, 59, 21, 31, 40, 88, 82, 18, 11, 57, 5, 57, 00, 73, 11, 75, 1Caution Lap 11Restart again and this time the 31 of Robertson gives a look low on pressley but can't do anything with him.  Coming off four, Daniels has a lot of space, Carroll and Hamlet run second and third.

The 82 of Bowen is hung outside, with Falk and Robertson both passing him.  He's got some damage on his front end and it's hard to tell what caused it.

Field spreads out now with Daniels, Carroll and Hamlet all pulled away from Pressley, who runs fourth.  Pressley's got Falk behind him.

The 18 rides through 1 and 2 sideways and he'll back it into the wall in turn 2.  That's David Roberts, and he's probably done for the race.

 Restart is going to be 30, 90, 21, 59, 40, 31, 82, 57, 88, 14, 5, 11, 57, 73, 00, 11, Update Lap 20

Good restart for the leaders again.  Battle is for sixth, with Eddie Johnson underneath Ryan Robertson.  Robertson's hanging otough and trying to keep his spot in front of Bowen.Contact with Rodney Cook bumping Hairfield to get by.  Mullins also gives Hairfield a rub.Field single-files out through most of the field.  Terry Carroll is looking a little racy behind Cliff Daniels.
Robertson dives under Johnson, Johnson dirt tracks it through 1 and 2 and will hold the spot!  Robertson gives him another nudge on the next lap and this time will make it by.

 With five to go: 30, 90, 21, 40, 59, 31, 57, 82, 14, 5, 57, 00, 88, Caution Lap 23Battle will be for fifth if there is one.  Coleman Pressley has a lot of room in front of him, but has Ryan Robertson charging.  Robertson's closed the gap to about a length with three to go. 

Caution comes out with the 5 of Mangum bumping the back of Cook in the 14.  Cook gets around and the caution comes out.

 We'll go green white checkered: 30, 90, 21, 40, 59, 31, 57, 82, 5, 57, 00, 14, 88, 11Cliff Daniels WinsSo we'll see how things go back in the field.  Daniels has had the field covered up front, but Pressley was having issues with Robertson.

 
The 14 of Rodney Cook gets into mangum in the 5, but we keep going.

White flag and the front 3 are settled.  Hamlet's got 4th, and Robertson has fifth, but has Pressley underneath him.  They come off 2 and Pressley falls back.  Pressley gives a look but it'll be Daniels, Carroll, Falk, Robertson and Hamlet.Heat Race 3Green Flag @ 2:31 / Full Restart

Four NC drivers lead a field of 22 cars.  It's Triplett Jr, Rouse, Huffman and Falk for 25 laps.  Hopefully these guys'll play a little nicer.  Triplett and Rouse lead the field off 4, green flag flies and we're underway.

 Field stacks up through 1 and 2 and the 51 of Bruce Anderson gets thew orst of it.  He'll get hung up on the grass in turn 2, and the caution comes out.  Also stacking up in that were Shayne Lockhart, Jonathan Bailey and James Goff.We'll do a full restart.Restart - Update Lap 10

 Much better restart, everyone plays nice through 1 and 2.  Through 3 and 4 and we're clean.  It's Triplett Jr. underneath Rouse, and Rouse will lead lap 1.   Theyv'e got the 7 of Huffman runs third, but he's got the 02 of Coulter underneath him.

 

Triplet jr. makes it back by Rouse on lap 5.  Coulter puts some space between him and Huffman, and Huffman's stuck up high.  The 70 of Oliver is goign to make it by.  The 7 of Dude Gibbs makes it by the 7 of Huffman next.  IT's thehn Yontz getting by, and the 12 of Campbell as well.  Huffman will fall in behind Campbell.

 

Up front Triplett and Rouse are logging laps, with Coulter running by himself in third.  Oliver has Gibbs behind them, and Gibbs is getting heat from Yontz.  Gibbs gets to the bumper of Oliver, but doesn't push the issue.After 10: 00, 15, 02, 70, 7, 55, 12, 41, 89, 97, 33, 2, 07, 89, 37
Update Lap 20Yontz gives Gibbs a bump and Gibbs runs up the track.  Yontz gets by, and campbell get underneath him.  Gibbs is strong up top, but will get loose coming off turn 2 on lap 13. 

Gibbs gives a look down low on Campbell and will get a run off turn 2.  Campbell runs a high line and out-brakes Gibbs and will hold the spot.  That battle is for 6th.

If we don't have a caution, the top five is set with Triplett Jr., Rouuse, Coulter, Oliver and Yontz running 1-5.  Battle continues for 6th, with Gibbs doing everything he can to catch Campbell.  Without a caution, though, it's a pretty meaningless race.With five to go: 00, 15, 02, 70, 55, 12, 41, 7, 89, 33, 7, 97, 2, 89, 07, 37, 51, 00

David Triplett Jr. Wins

Heat Race 4:

Green Flag @ 2:53 / Caution / Full Restart

 So we've got Stacy Pureyear and Stephen Berry on the front row.  Two white cars, with Jamie Yelton and Brandon Butler behind them.  Pace car dives off turn 3, Puryear brings them off turn 4, and we're underway for the final 25 laps.

 The 16 of Jamie Byrd spins in turn 1, but gest it going.  Wade Day, Frank Deiny Jr., Sherman Davis Jr., Robert Tyler and Owen Kelly all get together up in turn 3.  Kelly has a lot of damage on his car, Tyler is done for the day, but everyone else looks to be relatively okay.  Clay Greenfield also look sto have a significant amount of damage on his front end, but he'll continue.

There'll be a full restart.Restart / CautionSo we're going to have a full restart, with Puryear and Berry up front.  Good restart for Berry, and he'll have the lead coming off turn 2.

Caution comes out with Sherman Davis Jr. and Wade day getting together.  Davis Jr.'s car is prety messed up, but he'll continue.  Wade stalled it in turn 1 to bring out the caution.  We'll have a full restart, yet again.

 Restart #2 / Caution Lap 6

 We'll try this again.  Terrible restart by Berry, and he'll fall in third behind Yelton.  The 29 of Butler runs fourth, with Nick Smith running fifth, but getting pressure from Randy Burnett on his outside.

The front five check out, and the caution comes out for rather sizeable debris on the front stretch.

 We'll restart: 17, 8, 71, 29, 21N, 14, 28J, 3, 77, 1W, 16, 25, 12, 56, 73, 3Caution lap 10

 Randy Burnett gets a good run on the outside, and he'll make it around Smith.  Smith, though, keeps the 3 of Lee Pullam at bay.  Pulliam is now hung up with Travis Jarrett underneath him.  They'll stay side by side for 2 laps before Jarrett takes the spot.Just behind them the caution comes out as the 1 of Wheat and the 77 of Mills get together.  Mills is good and bent up, and he's going to come in and pit.  wheat rejoins the field at the tail end.

 We'll restart: 17p, 71, 8, 29, 14, 21N, 28, 3, 25, 56, 34, 16, 84, 12, 28, 73, 1, 7Caution lap 16Good restart this time for Berry, but Puryear is strong on the inside.  Puryear and Berry will drag race off turn 2, with Puryear getting the upper hand through 3 and 4.  Berry looks low on Puryear, but all that does is give Yelton a look.  Yelton has nothing right now though.

The front four of Puryear, Berry, Yelton and Butler pull away from fifth place Burnett.  Burnett gets REALLY loose through 1 and 2 and that lets Jarrett underneath him.  Pulliam gets into the 21 of Nick Smith, Smith runs up the track and will lose about 4 spots.

Caution comes out for the 28 of Sherman Davis Jr. spinning in turn 4.  Not sure, but I'm willing to bet he had help.We'll restart: 17, 71, 8, 29, 14, 28J, 21N, 34, 25, 56, 16, 1, 73, 12, 3.  The 3 is put to the rear for rough driving.Caution Lap 23

 The front two of Puryear and Berry once again are fighting hard for the lead.  This time Berry looks to have the spot as Puryear gets a little loose trying to keep from riding up into Berry.  Yelton now is going to give Puryear a look, but has nothing right now.  Field single-files through, with Wade Day the only exception.  He's strung out and falls in 9th behind Frank Deiny Jr.The front five have put some dsitance between themselves and Derrick Lancaster, who runs sixth.  Lancaster's got a bit of room to work, with Nick Smith behind him by about 3 lengths.  Smith has Frank Deiny Jr. behind him.

 Caution comes out for the 12 of Ross Clements getting around in turn 2.Burnett brings his car in the garage and is done for the day.

 We're going to green white checkered: 71, 17, 8, 29, 28, 25, 21, 56, 34, 73, 16, 1, Caution Lap 23, againCaution comes out as the 56 of Deiny gets into Lancaster.  He'll spin and hit the wall, and take Brandon Butler, Nick Smith and Owen Kelly with him.  Restart is going to be: 71, 17, 8, 28J, 16, 34, 1, 12, 3, 73, 56 restart for Berry again, with Puryear on his outside.  Puryear falls into third, with Jarrett behind him.  Deiny is seventh going into turn 1, he'll come off in sixth.  He's got 2 more corners to get in. Through 3 and 4 and it's going to be Berry, Yelton, Puryear, Jarrett and Jamie Byrd.

Berry WINS!


Martinsville Bailey's 300 Live Updates

STARTING LINEUP FOR BAILEY'S 300

JASON YORK WINS THE CLOCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lap by Lap Updates by www.racerap.com

Starting Lineup:

1)  06 - Davin Scites

2)  26 - Phillip Morris

3)   2 - Dennis Setzer

4)  88 - Mark McFarland

5)  27 - Tommy Lemons Jr.

6)  50 - Jamey Caudill

7)  51 - Wayne Ramsey

8)  08 - Deac McCaskill

9)  18 - Jason York

10) 72 - Richard Boswell

11) 81 - Matt DiBenedetto

12)    - Matt McCall

13)  4 - Kelly Kingery

14) 29 - Andy Loden

15)    - Owen Miller

16)    - Greg Edwards

17)  3 - Chad Harris

18) 00 - Lucas Ransone

19)  5 - Jerame Donley

20) 24 - Brad Brinkley

21) 16 - RD Smith

22) 77 - Timothy Peters

 

 

23) 87 - Sam Yarbrough

24) 30 - Cliff Daniels

25) 00 - David Triplett Jr.

26) 71 - Stephen Berry

27) 04 - Forrest Reynolds

28) 90 - Terry Carroll

29) 15 - Michael Rouse

30)  8 - Jamie Yelton

31) 91 - David Quackenbush

32) 40 - CE Falk

33) 02 - Joey Coulter

34) 17 - Stacy Puryear

35)  8 - Matt Jaskol

36) 31 - Ryan Robertson

37) 70 - Craig Oliver

38) 28 - Travis Jarrett

39) 44 - Justin Johnson

40) 21 - Butch Hamlet

41) 55 - Alex Yontz

42) 16 - Jamie Byrd

READY TO GO GREEN at 4:15 PM

Lap 1:  Green Flag Flies: Scites lead Morris into the 1st corner...  06,26,2,88, 27
Lap 10: 26,2,06,88,27,50,51,18,81
Lap 11: Caution for spinning car in turn 4..
Restart Lineup: 26,2,06,88,27,50,51,18,81,54,4,29,32,24,   back to green lap 17
DOUBLE FILE RESTARTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
SETZER TAKES LEAD on lap 18!
Lap25 :2,26,06,88,27,50,18,51,81,54,4,29,24,32,77
CAUTION lap 28.. spinning car
RESTART LINEUP:2,26,06,27,88,50,18,51,81,54,4,29,24,77,32,00,8,57,71,15,40,17,55,87,
04,0,28,44, 70,31, 02,78,08,5,76,72, 30   BACK TO GREEN LAP 32
UPDATE!!! Caution as #50 Caudill slows to a stop! Lap 33
RESTART ON LAP 36
CAUTION LAP 43 back cars pile up. No real damage, everyone restarts...
Back to Green on Lap 47
Lap 50 - Deac McCaskill in garage- trans. problem
rundown: 2,26,06,27,88,51,54,
Caution Lap 68
Restart Lineup: 26, 88, 2,06, 77,51 , 54, 77, 18, 29, 81, 4, 24, 00, 71, 04 , 32, 17,40, 8, 67, 55, 28, 0, 50  02    Green on lap 75
Caution Lap 87 Crash turn 1 32 & 28 crash together into wall. BACK TO GREEN LAP 93
Scites is slowing down, looks like a tire going down, sparks coming from the car 4 laps to 1/2 way caution
1/2 Caution is  OUT! There will be an inversion of some sorts!
TOP SIX (6) TO BE INVERTED!!!!!
 

INTERMISSION:

Huge pileup on start, 51, 88, 24, 87 involved. new restart lineup in a sec. Cars cars in between turns 1&2.
Restart Lineup:

27 81 2 26 77 8 18 54 71 17 4 04 0 55 5 44 40 15 21 90 31 70 28  87 29 76
McFarland is in the pits.... Scites also on pit Road
Back to Green Lap 112  88 laps to go!!!
Lap 115 -- Battle for the lead, Dennis Setzer is going for the lead, BIG CRASH turn 3 Timothy Peters hard into the wall!   PETERS GOING BEHIND WALL
Restart Lineup: 27 2 26 18 8 17 81 54 4 04 44 0 55 40 18 78 21 90 06 02 31 76 51 70 28 5  BACK TO GREEN on Lap 122
Lap 125: 2 27 26 18 8 81 4
PHILLIP MORRIS and TOMMY LEMONS CRASH IN TURN 3
Restart Lineup: 2 18 26 (able to keep going and not loose a spot)  21 8 back to green lap 131
Lap 150: 50 laps to go!    2 26 18 8 54 81 4 0 21 40 78 55 88 02 05 27 28 70 90 15 44 76
Lap 165:  2  26 8  18
CAUTION 172  Looks like RAIN
It's raining like the dickens right now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

RACE IS RED FLAGGED!!!

We got the jet dryer and several dozen vehicles on the track right now trying to get the track dry. It has stopped raining.....

The Track is Now DRY!
The Drivers are strapped back in their cars and we are ready to start racing again
It is 7:03 PM starting to get a bit dark
restart lineup:
2 26 8 18 51 28 81 4 0 21 40 78 5 55 02 27 18 44 76 90 31
20 to go. DOUBLE FILE RESTARTS..  Still will have caution at lap 190 ...
GREEN FLAG FLIES
Lap 185: 2 26 18 51 81 4 21 0 78 40   Setzer has big lead right now over Morris.......

Mandatory caution at lap 190... 10 to go... Reline lead cars up front..
Restart lineup:
2
26
18
54
81
4
21
0
40

green flag 8 to go Morris is on the outside of SETZER HUGE CRASH and MORRIS IS IN IT!!!
Lap 194

Restart Lineup:
GREEN WHITE CHECKERED  DOUBLE FILE RESTART---18 254 2 4 81 21 40 5 78 02 27 55 8
White Flag  18 2 54 81 4


JASON YORK WINS as many cars crash over finish line

TOP  5
18
2
54
4
21









Racer, Actor, All around good guy PAUL NEWMAN DIES

By Bob Barney

             News just in that Paul Newman has died. Newman, who career started as an actor (and one of the best of the best) but wanted also to be known as a serious racer (which he was)has died. Everyone from RaceRap and The Plain Truth send our thoughts and prayers for the life of this great man. I personally didn't hold to his liberal views, but he was an honest liberal who sincerely believed in his message and a true great American. He started the Hole in the Wall Camp for sick children (which Victory Junction Camp is patterned after), the camp serves 13,000 children every year, free of charge, He also started Newman's Own salad organic products where every single dime raised went to charity. As of early 2006, the franchise has resulted in excess of 200 million in donations. He co-wrote a memoir about the subject with Hotchner, Shameless Exploitation in Pursuit of the Common Good. Among other awards, Newman co-sponsors the PEN/Newman's Own First Amendment Award, a 25,000 reward designed to recognize those who protect the first amendment as it applies to the written word.Paul_Newman

Paul was 83 years old. He starred in some of the all time greatest films like Butch Cassidy, Exodus (1960), The Hustler (1961), Hud (1963), Harper (1966), Hombre (1967), Cool Hand Luke (1967), The Towering Inferno (1974), Slap Shot (1977) and The Verdict (1982). He teamed with fellow actor Robert Redford and director George Roy Hill for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) and The Sting (1973).

He appeared with his wife, Joanne Woodward, in the feature films The Long, Hot Summer (1958), Rally 'Round the Flag, Boys!, (1958), From the Terrace (1960), Paris Blues (1961), A New Kind of Love (1963), Winning (1969)WHICH IN MY OPINION WAS THE BEST RACING MOVIE OF ALL TIME!!!!, WUSA (1970), The Drowning Pool (1975), Harry & Son (1984) and Mr. and Mrs. Bridge (1990). They also both starred in the HBO miniseries Empire Falls, but did not have any scenes together.

Newman was also the voice of "Doc Hudson" for the movie CARS. One of my favorite cartoons.

Newman's first professional event was in 1972, in Thompson, Connecticut. He ran the 24 hours of Le Mans once in 1979 and finished second in a Porsche 935 of Dick Barbour.

From the mid-'70s to the early '90s, he drove for the Bob Sharp Racing team, racing mainly Nissans. He became heavily associated with the brand during the '80s, even appearing in commercials for them. At the age of 70, he became the oldest driver to be part of a winning team in a major sanctioned race, the 24 Hours of Daytona in 1995. Newman told an Associated Press journalist in March 2005 that he'll "probably race for another year".

Newman co-founded Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing with Carl Haas, a Champ Car team, in 1983. He is also a partner in the Atlantic Championship team Newman Wachs Racing. The 1996 racing season was chronicled in the IMAX film Super Speedway, which Newman narrates. His team Newman/Haas/Lanigan announced a partnership with Robert Yates Racing of the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series, but that partnership collapsed when Yates announced his retirement from racing in September 2007.

He was married to actress Joanne Woodward. His only son died many years ago.

Paul Newman, May God Bless you!   

Please go to www.racerap.com to post any messages for Paul.


Today is The Day of Atonement

Forward by Bob Barney: I realize that Jews follow a different Day of Atonement, but as I addressed at Passover time, God's Calendar is not the Jewish Calendar of today. I won't bother to get into that subject now, but for Christians, understanding God's Holy Days are very important to understand just who Christ is and why the so-called Old Testament is vital to understand the real Jesus and what our future holds. Starting tonight until the end of Thursday Day (at sunset) is God's Day of Atonement.... The following is an article written 50 years ago by Herbert Armstrong...

Day of Atonement, or the Fast

Next, let us read Leviticus 23:26, 27, 31-32: "And the LORD spake ... saying, Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls [fast] ....Ye shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath." Wonderful mystery! At-one-ment with God! Man at last made one with his Maker!

     Again, in the 16th chapter of Leviticus, verses 29 and 31, where the symbolism of the Day of Atonement is explained, we find it instituted a holy Sabbath to be kept forever: "And this shall be a statute for ever unto you: that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, ye shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it be one of your own country, or a stranger that sojourneth among you ....It shall be a sabbath of rest unto you, and ye shall afflict your souls, by a statute for ever."

Meaning Pictured by Day of Atonement

The Day of Atonement pictures a wonderful and great event, to take place after the Second Coming of Christ, which the world is in total ignorance of because it has failed to see the true significance of these annual Sabbaths holy unto the Lord. It has failed to keep them as a constant reminder of God's plan of redemption!

     The symbolism is all expressed in the account of the events of the Day of Atonement, as carried out before the crucifixion, in the 16th chapter of Leviticus.

     Verse 5 -- "And he [Aaron, or the high priest] shall take of the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats for a sin offering ...."

     Verse 6 -- The high priest offered a sin offering for HIMSELF and his house.

     Verses 7 and 8 -- "And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the Lord at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats; the one lot for the LORD, and the other lot for the scapegoat" (margin, Hebrew, Azazel).

     Now because this has not been understood -- because there are many different views and opinions and ideas and explanations of this, we here pause sufficiently to go into this in some detail. Let us, therefore, regardless of our own former convictions, study with open minds, without prejudice, proving all things. We want truth!

     The key to the whole explanation lies in a correct understanding of the meaning of Azazel. This word does not occur elsewhere in the Old Testament. The Comprehensive Commentary has: "Spencer, after the oldest opinions of the Hebrews and Christians, thinks Azazel is the name of the Devil, and so Rosen ....The word scapegoat signifies the goat which went away." The One Volume Commentary says: "The word 'scapegoat' in the A.V. is not a translation." It is merely an interpretation of the supposed meaning by the translators.

     True, the English word "scapegoat" signifies "one who bears blame or guilt for others." But "scapegoat" is an English word, and is not a translation of the Hebrew word Azazel. The word "scapegoat," and the meaning attached to this English word, is not a translation of the Hebrew word Azazel, and therefore it is not the word inspired originally. Continues the One Volume Commentary: "Azazel is understood to be the name of one of those malignant demons."

Types of Christ and Satan

These two goats were, of course, types. Notice, it was necessary to be decided by lot, which one was qualified to represent Christ, and which Azazel. Some say BOTH were qualified. The scripture does not say this. Let us not assume it. Now a "lot" is a solemn appeal to God to decide a doubtful matter. It is a sacred religious ceremony. It included a supernatural act of God. That is why lotteries and gambling are of the devil -- an actual profaning of a holy service appealing to God.

     Notice, men were unable to decide which goat was qualified to represent Christ. This involved an appeal to God to decide! "One lot for the Lord, and the other lot for Azazel." Now one lot was for the Lord -- this goat typified Christ -- but the other lot was not for the Lord, did not typify Christ, but Azazel -- Satan! These words most naturally suggest that Azazel is the name of a person, here contrasted to the Eternal! Notice the contrast -- one for the Lord, the other for Azazel.

     Now the goat which God selected -- through lot, to represent Christ -- was slain, as Christ, its anti type was slain. But the other goat selected by God to represent Azazel was not slain, but was driven, alive, into an uninhabited wilderness. It was not a resurrected goat, symbolizing the resurrected Christ, for it never died. The uninhabited wilderness, to which this goat was driven, cannot, as we shall show, represent heaven, where Christ went. Heaven is neither uninhabited, nor a wilderness.

     After God designated which goat represented Christ and which Azazel, the high priest (verse 11) killed the bullock for a sin offering for himself, then took the burning coals of fire and the sweet incense into the Holy of Holies, also sprinkling the blood of the bullock before the mercy seat, typical of the throne of God, covering the tables of testimony (the law). This the high priest was required to do in order to purify himself to officiate, and to represent Christ as High Priest. In the anti type, this was not done, for Christ, our High Priest, had no need of this purification as the typical substitutionary priests did.

     Now the Levitical high priest was ready to go out and officiate.

     Next, the goat which God selected by lot to represent Christ, as the sin offering of the people, was killed. Thus the sins of the people were borne by the goat, even as Christ, finally, once for all, bore our sins on the cross. But Christ rose again from the dead, and ascended to the throne of God in heaven.

     Now, who, or what, from this point on in the Levitical ceremony, typified the resurrected Christ, who went to heaven? Some say the goat representing Azazel. Let us see.

     The risen Christ, now at the right hand of the throne of God in heaven (I Peter 3:22), is called -- what? Our High Priest! What was the earthly type of God's throne? The uninhabited wilderness? No! That is where the live goat went!

     The earthly type of God's throne was the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies. After Christ died, He went to the heavenly mercy seat interceding for us, as our High Priest. "... Entereth into that within the veil; whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec" (Heb. 6:19-20).

     Now, again, who, or what, in the Levitical ceremony of the Day of Atonement, typified the risen Christ, our High Priest, who went within the veil to God's throne in heaven? The one goat had been slain. It represented the slain Christ. It can no longer represent the risen Christ. The slain Christ was not our High Priest, because the Levitical priesthood, with its high priest, did not end until Christ rose from the dead and ascended to heaven as a High Priest after the order of Melchisedec. But the risen Christ was High Priest. Now WHO took this part in the Levitical ceremonies, temporarily re-enacted year by year, on this eternal Holy Day? Why, so obviously a child could see, it was the Levitical high priest, not the goat representing Azazel!

The High Priest -- Type of Christ

As soon as the slain goat was dead, who went within the veil, presenting the blood of this goat before the typical throne of God? Leviticus 16:15-16 -- "Then shall he [the high priest] kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for the people, and [now the high priest himself typifying the work of the risen Christ] bring his blood within the veil ... and sprinkle it upon the mercy seat: and he shall make an atonement for the holy place ...."

     And so it was the high priest taking blood within the veil, to the mercy seat, that typified the risen Christ figuratively taking HIS blood, once for all, within the veil to the very throne of God in heaven, there to intercede for us as High Priest. Surely this is so plain a child can see.

     The slain goat represented the crucified Jesus. The high priest, by taking the blood of this slain goat into the veil to the mercy seat in the Holy of Holies, a type of God's throne, represented and did the work of the risen Christ, who ascended to the right hand of the Majesty on high, there interceding as our High Priest. Can we honestly continue to teach that the goat representing Azazel represented the work of the risen Christ? Did this live goat take the blood of Christ within the veil, to the mercy seat?

     The high priest going within the veil, into the Holy of Holies, symbolized Christ's return to heaven. The work he did while in the Holy of Holies symbolized Christ's work these 1900 years interceding for us, presenting His shed blood before the mercy seat in heaven. Now, coming back out, symbolizing Christ's return to earth, what did the high priest do?

   

  "And when he hath made an end of reconciling the holy place, and the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat: and Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness: and the goat shall bear upon him [Fenton: shall carry upon itself] all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness. And Aaron shall ... wash his flesh with water .... And he that let go the goat for the scapegoat [Azazel] shall wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in water, and afterward come into the camp" (Lev. 16:20-24, 26).

The Azazel Goat Not Our Sin-Bearer

Let us get this straight! Is there justice with God? Is not God a God of justice, as well as of compassion and mercy? Who is the real author of our sins? The devil is the author of them, even as Christ is the author of our salvation. Jesus took our guilt -- our blame -- our sins -- upon Himself as an innocent substitutionary sacrifice. He was an innocent victim. He loved us, and was willing to die for us. Our guilt -- our sins, were borne by Him, and Him alone -- and God forgives them when we repent and accept His sacrifice. And yet, is this, if we stop there, full justice?

     The real cause -- the actual author of those sins -- was Satan the devil. Is it justice for Christ to bear guilt that is not His, while the devil goes off scot-free? Do you not suppose GOD'S great plan will finally work full justice by placing that original blame and guilt right where it belongs?

     Now mark carefully this distinction. Christ bore our guilt. For we have been guilty, even though the devil was the original cause of it all. But justice certainly demands that God place right back on the head of the devil his guilt -- not our guilt, but his own guilt -- for leading us into sin. We were guilty, too -- and our guilt Christ bore -- yet all our sins belong right back on the devil as his own guilt!

     Now notice another point. The Azazel goat carries away the sins of all the people already forgiven. These sins already were fully paid for by Christ's substitute sacrifice, symbolized by the killing of the innocent goat before those same sins were finally laid on the live goat. They had been previously paid for by the death of the slain goat.

     The devil is the real author of all sin. Can we, then, be finally made at one with God, as long as this instigator of sin is with us? Can we not see he must first be driven away? And there would not be justice with God unless his own guilt in our sins were placed right back on his head? Is it justice for Christ to bear the devil's guilt, as well as our own guilt, for our sins? Christ has carried our sins, but must He continue to carry them? Should they not be removed entirely from us, and from the presence even of God?

     Thus the killing and sprinkling of blood of the first goat visibly set forth the means of reconciliation with God, through the substituted sacrifice of an innocent victim. So finally the sending away of the second goat, laden with those sins, the expiation of which had been signified by the first goat, no less vividly sets forth the effect of that sacrifice, in complete removal of those expiated sins from the presence of God!

Satan the Accuser

Satan is the accuser of the brethren. His power over men is founded on sin. When all these sins, of which he is the author, are laid back on him, after being removed from us by Christ, then Satan shall have lost his claim on us. And no longer can he accuse us! Thus, finally, as the acceptance of the blood of the first goat (Christ) symbolized complete propitiation, and pardon of Israel's sins, so the sending of Azazel bearing away those expiated sins symbolizes the complete removal of all sins -- deliverance by the atonement from the power of the adversary.

     The sacrifice of the first innocent victim was the means of reconciliation with God, but not yet complete justice. The driving away of the second live goat shows the final atonement, by placing the sins on their author where they belong, and the complete removal of the sins and their author from the presence of God and His people -- and thus the complete deliverance of the people from the power of Satan.

     Webster says to atone means to set at one. To join in one -- to form by uniting. We shall not be completely joined in one, and united with God, until this is done.

     Before leaving this, notice, too, that after laying both his hands on the live goat, Azazel, Aaron had to wash and cleanse himself before coming in contact with the people. So, too, the "fit man" also had to wash his clothes and bathe himself after coming in contact with the Azazel goat, before he came into the presence of the people. The symbolism is certainly that of having come in contact with the devil!

     Notice, now, this act of putting these already expiated and forgiven sins on the head of this live goat does not take place until after the high priest returns from the Holy of Holies within the veil -- so this typified an act to take place after the Second Coming of Christ to this earth!

     But if the live goat represented the resurrected Christ, then the sins Christ bore on the cross were placed by another, typified by the high priest, back on Christ, after His resurrection. Would this make sense? Is the theory of the Azazel goat being Christ consistent? No, but the plain simple meaning does fit at every turn, and IS consistent. The first goat represented the innocent Jesus who died for our sins -- the high priest represented the risen Christ going within the veil to the mercy seat, or throne of God in heaven, for over 1900 years -- and the high priest returning to place the sins finally upon the head of the live goat represented the return of Christ who will place the sins He bore on their author, the devil, and who will send him away alive into a desolate uninhabited wilderness -- the "bottomless pit" or abyss of Revelation 20:3.

   

In the 19th chapter of Revelation, we have the prophecy of the Second Coming of Christ. At the beginning of the 20th chapter, what is to happen?

     Exactly what the 16th chapter of Leviticus shows. The devil is sent away -- the symbol here used is the "bottomless pit" symbol of an uninhabited desolate wilderness (Rev. 18:2) -- and he is sent there by a FIT man -- an ANGEL from heaven. Now the devil is not killed. He does not die. He is still alive a thousand years later -- after the Millennium (Rev. 20:7).

     Now a few points that will come to mind. Both goats were "presented before the Lord." Can Satan be presented before the Lord? Job 1:6 and 2:1 says he has presented himself before the Lord. Note, too, Azazel was driven away from the Holy of Holies, a symbol of God's presence.

    

And so the annual Day of Atonement was instituted forever to keep continually before God's children and His Church the plan of redemption, to occur after the Second Coming of Christ.

   

And we find this annual holy day recognized in the New Testament. In Acts 27:9, it is recorded that Paul was on his perilous sea voyage to Rome, "when sailing was now dangerous, because the fast was now already past ...." See the margin in your Bible. The fast refers to the Day of Atonement -- the 10th day of the seventh month. Now this day could not then have been past on that particular year unless that day was still in full effect and force and existence. Otherwise the Holy Spirit surely could never have inspired those words! Surely this strongly indicates that this day was still in existence and being recognized thus by the Holy Spirit.

Bob Barney: Again, we see that every holiday followed in the Old Testament are CHRISTIAN Holidays and not "Jewish" ones. They all point to Christ. It was these holidays that Christ's 1st century church followed, and so should we! Today, from the evening of tonight, until Thursday evening at sunset (a 24 hour time over TWO days; the 9th and 10th) is a day of fasting and prayer and a time to especially remember how lucky we are, and looking forward to the wonderful world tomorrow, which is symbolized again in the Bible known as the 8 day Feast of Weeks! It comes in 5 short days!!!   More on the meaning of that holiday on September 30th!


Our Chickens Have Come Home To Roost: Political Correctness

By Bob Barney
"America's chickens, have come home, to roost," stated a now-famous black Christian pastor and ex-pal of Barack Obama. How accurate that man was! No, I am not talking about 9-11 and the Muslim attack on America and her people. I am talking about America's 75-year policy of ignoring God's Word and following a multi-cultural rationalization.
 
In the book of Jeremiah, God says "Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain." This is exactly what American politicians, leaders and educators have done to our country.
 
In my recent column on the real cause of the economic meltdown, I proved beyond any shadow of a doubt that America's pandering to multi-culturalism, especially to the black and Hispanic people has led to our recent economic collapse and friends. It is going to get worse, unless we stop and listen to what our God has to say to us. These are NOT racist comments, these are realistic comments! It is not racist to choose right from wrong, positive versus negative.
 
Truthfully, the best thing that could ever happen to black Americans would be to learn how to be an "American." Italians, for example, have been able to do it, and they were hated in their day more than blacks are today. My grandmother, born in Italy was called a "macaroni" bender in the second grade! The Italians learned how to become "American." The American way works, and when our age-old, Christian-based values are followed, everyone will succeed! We do not do the black race any favor pandering to its needs.
 
Bill Cosby, who is routinely pounced on by the liberals, white and black, has it right. He understands that to succeed, you follow the example of what works. Black culture does not work! Hip Hop gangster baggy-pant thugs are thugs!
 
America is a Christian nation, and as long as it remains a Christian nation, we will survive any war, any depression any calamity. Multi-culturalism is what was being talked about when God called His people out of Egypt, which is a type of sin, with Pharaoh being a type of Satan. God said:
 
"When thou art come into the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits [demons], or a wizard, or a necromancer [one who claims to communicate with the dead]. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee. Thou shalt be perfect with the LORD thy God" (Deuteronomy 18:9-13).
 
In plain English, we are not to try and learn other cultures to make us more modern. Other people are to learn our cultures, our ways and our laws!

Millions do not know who it was who issued this command to Moses. Believe it or not, it was the member of the divine Godhead, called "Elohim" in Genesis who became Jesus Christ of your New Testament! Here is the proof:
 
 
"In the beginning was the Word [Greek: Logos, meaning Spokesman"], and the Word was with God [Theos, the Greek equivalent of Elohim, meaning more than One] and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him [He was the CREATOR of Genesis!]; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own [the Jews], and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name" (John 1:12).

There is no possibility of misunderstanding or misinterpreting these verses of your Bible! Jesus Christ of Nazareth was the GOD OF THE OLD TESTAMENT! He said to the Jews, "Before Abraham was, I AM" (John 8:58). He said to Moses, who asked him his name, tell the people that "I AM hath sent me unto you." (Exodus 3:14). Look it up for yourself.

There are millions of hard-working, Christian blacks that are as American as you and I, that have fought for this country, but more importantly, live by the words of our God. This is what America was really about. Yes, our forefathers did not want an established religion, but they wanted a religious nation! They sought a Judeo-Christian nation, following sound Biblical doctrines. God made a promise that when we did not follow His laws and "And walked in the statutes of the heathen, whom the LORD cast out from before the children of Israel, and of the kings of Israel, which they had made. And the children of Israel (see who Israel really is in your Bible!) did secretly those things that were not right against the LORD their God (2 Kings 17:8).
 
 
What have we been doing as a nation? We have been turning away from God and not turning to God.
 
"And they shall turn away their ears from the truth and shall be turned unto fables." (II Timothy 4:4)

Now comes news of a result from a new poll. It disturbs the liberals and the politically correct, but anyone who is honest, black, white, purple, red or yellow, understands the root cause of the shocking findings! Yahoo News reports today:
WASHINGTON (AP) – Deep-seated racial misgivings could cost Barack Obama the White House if the election is close, according to an AP-Yahoo News poll that found one-third of white Democrats harbor negative views toward blacks – many calling them "lazy," "violent," responsible for their own troubles. The poll, conducted with Stanford University, suggests that the percentage of voters who may turn away from Obama due to his race could easily be larger than the final difference between the candidates in 2004 – about two and one-half percentage points.

The survey has even more findings. "Forty percent of all white Americans hold at least a partly negative view toward blacks, and that includes many Democrats and independents. More than a third of all white Democrats and independents – voters Obama can't win the White House without – agreed with at least one negative adjective about blacks, according to the survey, and they are significantly less likely to vote for Obama than those who don't have such views."
 
 
The survey also focused on the racial attitudes of independent voters because they are likely to decide the election. Many Republicans harbor prejudices, too, but the survey found they weren't voting against Obama on account of his race. Most Republicans wouldn't vote for any Democrat for president – white, black or brown.
 
Not all whites are prejudiced. Indeed, more whites say good things about blacks then say bad things, the poll shows. Many whites who see blacks in a negative light are still willing or even eager to vote for Obama. On the other side of the racial question, the Illinois Democrat is drawing almost unanimous support from blacks, the poll shows and supports a belief that most know that blacks distrust whites in overwhelming numbers. In other words, racism goes both ways.

click on image for larger view

Ap_poll_race_obama
AP went on with this quote: "We still don't like black people," said John Clouse, 57, reflecting the sentiments of his pals gathered at a coffee shop in Somerset, Ohio. Given a choice of several positive and negative adjectives that might describe blacks, 20 percent of all whites said the word "violent" strongly applied. Among other words, 22 percent agreed with "boastful," 29 percent "complaining," 13 percent "lazy" and 11 percent "irresponsible." When asked about positive adjectives, whites were more likely to stay on the fence than give a strongly positive assessment. More than a quarter of white Democrats agree that "if blacks would only try harder, they could be just as well off as whites.” Those who agreed with that statement were much less likely to back Obama than those who didn’t. Among white independents, racial stereotyping is not uncommon. For instance, while about 20 percent of independent voters called blacks "intelligent" or "smart," more than one third latched on the adjective "complaining" and 24 percent said blacks were "violent." Nearly four in 10 white independents agreed that blacks would be better off if they "try harder." (excerpt from the AP story) (The survey of 2,227 adults was conducted Aug. 27 to Sept. 5. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 2.1 percentage points.)

Erik Eckholm's column, "Plight Deepens for Black Men, Studies Warn" at Allhiphop.com states: "Black men in the United States face a far more dire situation than is portrayed ... . [N]ew studies, by experts at Columbia, Princeton, Harvard and other institutions, show that the huge pool of poorly educated black men are becoming ever more disconnected from the mainstream society, and to a far greater degree than comparable white or Hispanic men."

"There's something very different happening with young black men, and it's something we can no longer ignore," said Ronald B. Mincy, professor of social work at Columbia University and editor of "Black Males Left Behind" (Urban Institute Press, 2006).

"Over the last two decades, the economy did great," Mr. Mincy said, "and low-skilled women, helped by public policy, latched onto it. However, young black men were falling farther back."

"If you look at the numbers, the 1990s was a bad decade for young black men, even though it had the best labor market in 30 years," said Harry J. Holzer, an economist at Georgetown University and co-author, with Peter Edelman and Paul Offner, of "Reconnecting Disadvantaged Young Men" (Urban Institute Press, 2006).

Other stats Eckholm sites:
      
 
– Incarceration rates climbed in the 1990's and reached historic highs in the past few years. In 1995, 16 percent of black men in their 20s who did not attend college were in jail or prison; by 2004, 21 percent were incarcerated. By their mid-30s, six in 10 black men who had dropped out of school had spent time in prison.
 
– About half of all black men in their late 20s and early 30s who did not go to college are noncustodial fathers. The share of young black men without jobs has climbed relentlessly, with only a slight pause during the economic peak of the late 1990's. In 2000, 65 percent of black male high school dropouts in their 20s were jobless — that is, unable to find work, not seeking it or incarcerated. By 2004, the share had grown to 72 percent, compared with 34 percent of white and 19 percent of Hispanic dropouts. Even when high-school graduates were included, half of black men in their 20s were jobless in 2004, up from 46 percent in 2000.

Yes, it is not popular to say these things, but most Americans have a right to feel the way they do about black America, and all of the media hype is not going to make it go away. As long as one fears for their lives whenever they are in a black area, or watches any news broadcast, or sees the fate of half of the NBA and NFL players in the newspapers, this so-called racism isn't going to end. It is not racist to be in fear when you have a reason to be in fear!
 
Black Americans can, if they change their culture, make it in America, just like almost every other group has done. This is America, not Africa. To be accepted here, one must want to be here and adopt the ways of this country. Nobody would move to China and expect that nation to adopt the English language, banish Chinese culture and adopt American customs, yet that is exactly what black America has expected from this country. It is not going to happen.

Black Americans can change their fate, they can merge themselves into our culture and most Americans want that to happen, but unless there is a big change in that community, the continued fear and distrust of blacks will continue. Their leaders hold the key to the improvement of their own people. America is waiting for it to happen, and I hope that someday it will.

There was a time in this country when people spoke up for God and country. Today, we are ridiculed and called "racist," "homophobes" and "just plain dumb." That's fine with me. I guess I am not "modern" and "enlightened."
 
 
As for me, I'll take what Jesus said more seriously than what others might say: "In vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." (Mark 7:7)
 
 


Guess again who's to blame for U.S. mortgage meltdown

Analysts point not to greed, but to social activist politics


Posted: September 19, 2008
6:19 pm Eastern


By Drew Zahn
© 2008 WorldNetDaily

 

 


Stan J. Liebowitz

While many pundits are pointing to corporate greed and a lack of government regulation as the cause for the American mortgage and financial crisis, some analysts are saying it wasn't too little government intervention that cased the mortgage meltdown, but too much, in the form of activists compelling the government to pressure Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae into unsound – though politically correct – lending practices.

"Home mortgages have been a political piñata for many decades," writes Stan J. Liebowitz, economics professor at the University of Texas at Dallas, in a chapter of his forthcoming book, Housing America: Building out of a Crisis.

Liebowitz puts forward an explanation that he admits is "not consistent with the nasty-subprime-lender hypothesis currently considered to be the cause of the mortgage meltdown."

In a nutshell, Liebowitz contends that the federal government over the last 20 years pushed the mortgage industry so hard to get minority homeownership up, that it undermined the country's financial foundation to achieve its goal.

"In an attempt to increase homeownership, particularly by minorities and the less affluent, an attack on underwriting standards was undertaken by virtually every branch of the government since the early 1990s," Liebowitz writes. "The decline in mortgage underwriting standards was universally praised as 'innovation' in mortgage lending by regulators, academic specialists, (government-sponsored enterprises) and housing activists."

He continues, "Although a seemingly noble goal, the tool chosen to achieve this goal was one that endangered the entire mortgage enterprise."

"As homeownership rates increased there as self-congratulation all around," Liebowitz writes. "The community of regulators, academic specialists, and housing activists all reveled in the increase in homeownership."

An article in the Los Angeles Times from the late '90s praised the sudden surge in homeownership among minorities, calling it "one of the hidden success stories of the Clinton era."

John Lott, a senior research scientist at the University of Maryland, however, claimed in a Fox News article yesterday that the success came at a great price.

According to Lott, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston produced a manual in the early '90s that warned mortgage lenders to no longer deny urban and lower-income minority applicants on such "outdated" criteria as credit history, down payment or employment income.

Furthermore, claims Lott, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac encouraged and praised lenders – like Countrywide and Bear Stearns – for adopting the slackened policies toward minority applicants.

"Given these lending practices mandated by the Fed and encouraged by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac," writes Lott, "the resulting financial problems for financial institutions such as Countrywide and Bear Stearns are not too surprising."

(Story continues below)

   

Liebowitz' contention that lenders were under pressure to loosen their standards for racial and political goals was confirmed years ago by the companies at the heart of today's crisis: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

A New York Times article from Sept. 1999 states that Fannie Mae had been under increasing pressure from the Clinton administration to expand mortgage loans among low- and moderate-income people and that the corporation loosened its lending requirements to comply.

An ominous paragraph of the article reads, "In moving, even tentatively, into this new area of lending, Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980s."

Liebowitz likewise predicted in a 1998 paper the risk of sacrificing sound financial policy for social activism.

"After the warm fuzzy glow of 'flexible underwriting standards' has worn off," Liebowitz wrote, "we may discover that they are nothing more than standards that led to bad loans. … It will be ironic and unfortunate if minority applicants wind up paying a very heavy price for a misguided policy based on a badly mangled idea."

And though some have speculated that lenders in the '90s dove into sub-prime mortgages in an effort to gouge new markets, the president and chief operating officer of Freddie Mac in 1999, David Glenn, confessed his company was pushed by a federal agenda.

"The mortgage industry intends to pursue minorities with greater intensity as federal regulators turn up the heat to increase home ownership," Glenn said in his remarks at the annual convention of the Mortgage Banker Association of America.

"The federal government in the meantime has increased pressure on lenders to seek out minorities, as well as low-income groups and borrowers with poor credit histories," Glenn said. "Fannie Mae recently reached an agreement with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to commit half its business to low- and moderate-income borrowers. That means half the mortgages bought by Fannie Mae would be from those income brackets."

In that same year, Freddie Mac warned of the logical pitfalls of pursuing loans on the basis of skin color and not credit history.

The Washington Post reported that the company conducted a study in which it was found that far more black people have bad credit than white people, even when both have the same incomes. In fact, the study showed a higher percentage of African Americans with incomes of $65,000 to $75,000 had bad credit than white Americans with incomes of below $25,000.

Such data demonstrated that when federal regulators demanded parity between racial groups in lending, the only way to achieve a quota would be to begin making intentionally bad lending decisions.

The study, however, came under brutal attack in the U.S. Congress and was ridiculed with charges of racism.

A few years later, when Greg Mankiw, chairman of President Bush's Council of Economic Advisers, voiced a warning about weakened underwriting standards, Congress rebuffed him as well.

The Wall Street Journal quoted Congressman Barney Frank, D-Mass., in 2003 as criticizing Greg Mankiw "because he is worried about the tiny little matter of safety and soundness rather than 'concern about housing.'"

Frank, Chair of the House Financial Services Committee, rejected a Bush administration and Congressional Republican plan for regulating the mortgage industry in 2003, saying, "These two entities – Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac – are not facing any kind of financial crisis." According to a New York Times article, Frank added, "The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing."

Visit www.wnd.com

Updated Sunday September 21, 2008 By Bob Barney - The Plain Truth

The following is the total research that I did for the wnd post above, but first I want to make something clear: I understand that some may think this string is racist. Racism is when you are attacking a race based on hatred for that race (my def). The facts are plain and simple. Big Brother government policies over the past 50 years has caused a condition where many minorities expect things to be given to them by the Feds, and everyone else has been condition to except it and pay for it. This is wrong. There are many black Americans who have worked hard, fought for this country and are true good Americans and deserve to live the American dream free of discrimination and bigotry. The unfortunate fact is many others have been conditioned to expect and not to repay society and this has led to our present day mess and will lead to our defeat as a country. We are not doing anyone a favor looking the other way on bad behavior.

Many hard working Americans, who have played the game, worked hard and who did not have favored status have been forced to get unsecured credit card loans and because banks were losing what appears to be TRILLIONS and not BILLIONS have been killing the hard working middle class (white or black) with high interest rates to make up for the losses. Some credit cards today have raised their rates on cards to 35% even when the person has never paid late!

Millions are going broke today because credit cards used to buy businesses houses, etc. went from 4.9% rates to 30-35% rates within a year or two! No government agency was there to bail them out. There is a difference between those who suffer because of economic conditions and those who never intended to pay back any loans. Millions of good people now are losing their homes because others took advantage of a flawed system. That is what this story is really about. It is not up to our government to determine who should go broke and who should not based on their skin color!

This is not our fault. This could not have been foreseen by most regular folk because our government and our bankers LIED to us all about the condition of their loans for 10 years! Think about it. It can happen to everyone! Retired people are losing their homes that they own FREE and CLEAR because of taxes and runaway insurance claims. Insurance companies rape the consumer, try and not pay claims, and when they go broke, Uncle Sam bails THEM out and not those they just screwed!

Take a look at the research. Make up your own mind. BE INFORMED! Wake Up America.

Research Links:

Mortgages (National):  Mortgage Lenders to Step Up Pursuit of Minorities (10/13/99)
          BOSTON, Oct. 13, 1999 (Reuters) - "The mortgage industry intends to pursue minorities with greater intensity as federal regulators turn up the heat to increase home ownership in under served groups.

          "'We need to push into these under served markets as much as we can,' said David Glenn, president and chief operating officer of Freddie Mac.  Glenn made his remarks at the annual convention of the U.S. Mortgage Banker Association of America (MBA) this week.

          "Freddie Mac, like its sister agency Fannie Mae, is a government-chartered corporation that buys mortgages from banks and packages them into securities for investors.

          "In September, Freddie Mac launched a new lending program, based on research done in collaboration with five black colleges, to bring more African-Americans into the market.

          "The call for greater efforts to broaden minority home ownership comes at a time when interest rates are pinching mortgages. A record $1.5 trillion mortgages were granted in 1998 in a refinancing boom fueled by the lowest interest rates in nearly three decades.

          "The federal government in the meantime has increased pressure on lenders to seek out minorities, as well as low-income groups and borrowers with poor credit histories.

          "Fannie Mae recently reached an agreement with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to commit half its business to low-and moderate-income borrowers. That means half the mortgages bought by Fannie Mae would be from those income brackets."  Disturbingly, neither Fannie Mae nor Freddie Mac have instituted programs to enable disadvantaged non-minorities (European Americans) to qualify for a home mortgage.  (Based on Reuters, via Builders On-Line 10/13/99, by Richard Leong)
[link http://builder.hw.net/news/1999/oct/13/mort13.htx ]

Bad Credit by Minorities is Inherently Racist!  (10/05/99 - dead link)
          Like Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac is a federally chartered agency that provides loans and capital for home mortgages.

          "A Freddie Mac study concluding that far more black people have bad credit than white people, even when both have the same incomes, has come under attack in Congress, and some experts have questioned whether it oversimplifies a complex [racial] issue.

          "The study's [Freddie Mac] authors defended their conclusions but said they probably should have chosen language other than "bad credit" or "good credit" because they were trying to say whether people had trouble paying their bills.

          "The study of 12,000 Americans with incomes up to $75,000 received wide media coverage when it was released last month by Freddie Mac ..."

          "[The Freddie Mac study] is one part of a new program to teach minorities how to improve their credit, in partnership with the NAACP, the National Urban League and five historically black colleges, including Howard University."  [No such programs are offered by Freddie Mac for the benefit of "white" mortgage applicants.]

          "The [Freddie Mac] researchers, relying on data from credit reports, designated people as having "bad credit" if they had two bills overdue more than 30 days in the past two years, one bill more than 90 days late, a lien, a judgment or a bankruptcy. Their data showed that a higher percentage of African Americans with incomes of $65,000 to $75,000 had "bad credit" than whites with incomes below $25,000.

          U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), who strongly supports preferential credit and mortgage policies for designated minorites, said: "In other words we [minorities] are a credit risk because no matter how much money we make, we are also too stupid and undisciplined to know how to spend, plan and save."  (Washington Post 10/05/99 by D'Vera Cohn)

Fannie Mae, NAACP Join in Minority Mortgage Plan (01/21/99 - dead link)
          "Fannie Mae Chairman Franklin Raines last week called for continued efforts by Fannie Mae and mortgage lenders to reach out to those 'at the margins' of home ownership.  Blacks, Hispanics and immigrants trying to buy homes would be a major focus of outreach, Raines said."  Raines made no mention of assistance for the millions of white families who have difficulty purchasing homes.

          "Raines, a former White House budget chief (ed. note: and Now an adviser to Obama), noted that home ownership by white families is close to peak levels, now at 73 percent.  Only 45 percent of U.S. homeowners are minorities, suggesting an untapped market, he said."  [Raines ignores the fact that 'minorities' account for far less than 45 percent of total U.S. population.]

          "Fannie Mae, the largest source of financing for U.S. home mortgages, and the NAACP, the oldest U.S. civil rights organization, said they will join forces on Thursday to help more black families buy homes."  [Notably absent from the NAACP / Fannie Mae press release was any mention of assistance for the significantly larger number of non-minority families who have difficulty purchasing homes.]  (FoxNews, 01/21/99)

 

NEW YORK, Sept. 29, 1999 (Reuters) - "The government-chartered mortgage securities company Fannie Mae pledged Tuesday to commit more than $1 billion to boost minority home ownership in Chicago by expanding a program to create more affordable housing.

          Fannie Mae's CEO Franklin Raines stated he believes such a race-based program is necessary to increase the rate of homeownership by minorities.

          Fannie Mae's "HouseChicago" program served as a model for the race-based mortgage plan.   "HouseChicago" has funded $10 billion in affordable housing over the course of four years.  (Based on Reuters 09/29/99 via Home Building and Remodeling Network)

Mortgage Group Joins NAACP to Help Blacks Purchase Homes (01/22/99)
          "The Federal National Mortgage Association and the NAACP have formed a partnership that will provide up to $110 million in financing for families who cannot afford big down payments.  Under the partnership announced Thursday, Fannie Mae will provide financing for qualified black borrowers who will be able to put down as little as 3 percent to 5 percent of a home's value.

          "The new program also is designed to help at least 20,000 black families get information on home ownership. While 73 percent of white families own their own home, only about 45 percent of black and Hispanic families are homeowners, officials said.

          "The mortgage giant also pledged to finance an unlimited amount of mortgages for qualified families recommended by the NAACP, the nation's oldest civil rights organization.  Traditional credit requirements will be eased for black families whose credit histories were marred by burdensome medical expenses."  (Chicago Tribune, 01/22/99)

Monday, May 31, 1999

Minorities’ Home Ownership Booms Under Clinton but Still Lags Whites’

It’s one of the hidden success stories of the Clinton era. In the great housing boom of the 1990s, black and Latino homeownership has surged to the highest level ever recorded. The number of African Americans owning their own home is now increasing nearly three times as fast as the number of whites; the number of Latino homeowners is growing nearly five times as fast as that of whites.

http://articles.latimes.com/1999/may/31/news/mn-42807

STEVEN A. HOLMES

Published: September 30, 1999

In a move that could help increase home ownership rates among minorities and low-income consumers, the Fannie Mae Corporation is easing the credit requirements on loans that it will purchase from banks and other lenders.

The action, which will begin as a pilot program involving 24 banks in 15 markets -- including the New York metropolitan region -- will encourage those banks to extend home mortgages to individuals whose credit is generally not good enough to qualify for conventional loans. Fannie Mae officials say they hope to make it a nationwide program by next spring.

Fannie Mae, the nation's biggest underwriter of home mortgages, has been under increasing pressure from the Clinton Administration to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people and felt

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9C0DE7DB153EF933A0575AC0A96F958260

 

Many of the most egregious cases involved clearly predatory lending practices in which there was never any possibility that the borrowers could afford to pay off their loans.

In one example from 2006, Suzette Francis, a woman with two young children, no assets, working as a $10-an-hour security guard and living in a homeless shelter, obtained a mortgage for $470,000 that, as the report stated, "exhibited...every characteristic and feature associated with dangerous subprime loans."

Francis had down payment and no proven income or assets. Her adjustable rate mortgage started at 10.8% and was capped at 16.85%. At that rate, even her initial monthly payment came to more than $4,400. She would have to work 400 hours a month just to pay her loan.

"I'm, like, in a million dollar debt in housing and cash poor," Francis told the Commission while testifying earlier this year. http://money.cnn.com/2008/07/31/real_estate/NY_needs_more_lending_ovesight/index.htm

 

The mortgage shakeout could widen this gap because for various reasons, minority families have a disproportionate share of subprime loans. The Center for Responsible Lending -- citing federal data -- said that about 52 percent of loans made to African Americans in 2005 were subprime and 40 percent made to Latinos were subprime. That's over twice as high as the 19 percent of whites with subprime loans.

http://www.fanniemae.com/media/speeches/printthispage.jhtml?repID=/media/speeches/2007/speech_268.xml

Fannie Mae Pledges to Help Raise Minority Homeownership

Fannie Mae's new commitment to first-time home buyers is part of the next stage of the company's "American Dream Commitment," a plan announced in 2000 to provide $2 trillion in private capital for 18 million minority and underserved Americans to own or rent a home by the end of the decade.Having met the $2 trillion goal and the company's previous Trillion Dollar Commitment launched in 1994, Fannie Mae, along with many others -- including its lender,mortgage insurer, non-profit, real estate, home builder, housing finance agency, and other federal, state, and local government partners -- has now provided over $3 trillion in funds for over 28 million underserved families in 10 years.In 2003 alone, these strong partnerships allowed Fannie Mae to achieve a record level of more than $240 billion in mortgage purchases serving minority families.

MY COMMUNITY MORTGAGE

In 2000, Fannie Mae introduced the MyCommunityMortgage program to help low- and moderate-income borrowers purchase homes with a $500 down payment

HELP FOR ISLAMIC AMERICANS

One product developed in 2002 assists Islamic homebuyers. Islamic law prohibits paying interest, so to encourage Islamic families to purchase a home, the American Finance House-

Lariba in California worked with Fannie Mae to develop a financing model that works as a lease-to-purchase agreement. The homebuyer makes monthly rental payments equal to the monthly payments on a conventional mortgage.

More Than 120,000 Chicago Families Benefit from Fannie Mae's 'HouseChicago' Affordable Housing Plan; Company Exceeds Goal with More Than $10 Billion Invested in Four Years

Business Wire, Sept 28, 1999 http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0EIN/is_1999_Sept_28/ai_55891708

Fannie Mae Bending Financial System
to Create Homeowners, Says Raines

Private companies have an important role to play in promoting the good of society, says Franklin Raines, chief executive officer of Fannie Mae, the nation's largest source of financing for home mortgages.

Raines described Fannie Mae, a New York Stock Exchange company that started out as a federal agency, as "a mediating structure that bends the financial system to create homeowners."

As a private company with a public mission, Fannie Mae supports more home ownership than either government or the free market alone would, he said, and it plays a pivotal role in the U.S. economy.

http://advance.uconn.edu/2000/001030/00103004.htm

TESTIMONY BY WILLIAM MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM

Before the HOUSE BANKING SUBCOMMITTEE ON CAPITAL MARKETS, SECURITIES AND GOVERNMENT SPONSORED ENTERPRISES. FOR RELEASE June 15, 2000 10am.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman, Representative Kanjorski, Members of the Subcommittee, for giving me the opportunity to testify on the supervision and regulation of government sponsored enterprises, or GSE's. Your bill, H.R. 3703, the Housing Finance Regulatory Improvement Act, comes at a critical time. The bill proposes a new regulatory structure for three government-sponsored enterprises (GSE's). Given the importance of this legislation, I am honored to have an opportunity to comment. It is appropriate to note, however, that my comments represent my own views and do not in any way represent the views of my employer, the Board of Pensions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Nor do my views represent opinions from the GSE's themselves or Wall Street. I come before this Committee as an unbiased, independent investment analyst.

I will divide my remarks into four parts: first, a general discussion on social investing; second, a description of the GSEs' role in social investing; and third, background information on my activities in both social investing and the secondary mortgage markets, and finally, my concerns with how the GSE's are currently fulfilling their public purpose mission. I'll end with my view on certain aspects of the Baker bill.

Social Investing

"Social investing" describes a style of investing combining a desire to maximize financial return with an attempt to maximize social good. Many believe social investing began with the Religious Society of Friends, better known as the Quakers. In 1758, the Quaker Philadelphia Yearly Meeting prohibited members from participating in the business of buying or selling humans. Religious institutions have been at the forefront of social investing since.

In general, social investors favor:

Environmentally responsible corporate practices .

Corporate practices that support workforce diversity.

Corporate practices that increase product safety and quality.

According to a study Environmentally responsible corporate practices . released by the Social Investment Forum (SIF), a nonprofit professional association dedicated to promoting socially responsible investing, more than $2 trillion (US) is now invested in a socially responsible manner in the U.S. Social investments now account for about 13 percent of the estimated $16.3 trillion under professional management in the U.S.

Social Investing Strategies

Social investors use three basic strategies to maximize financial return and attempt to maximize social good. These strategies are outlined below.

SCREENING excludes certain securities from portfolios based on social and/or environmental criteria. For example, many socially responsible investors screen out tobacco company investments. Recently, CalSTRS (California State Teachers' Retirement System) announced the removal of more than $237 million in tobacco holdings from its investment, portfolio after 6 months of financial analysis and deliberations. This is an example of a social screen at work.

SHAREHOLDER ACTIVISM. Shareholder Activism efforts attempt to positively influence corporate behavior. These efforts include initiating conversations with corporate management, or dialoging, on issues of concern, and submitting and voting proxy resolutions. These activities are undertaken with the belief that social investors, working cooperatively, can steer management on a course that will improve financial performance over time and enhance the well being of the stockholders, customers, employees, vendors, and communities.

POSITIVE INVESTING involves making investments in activities and companies believed to have a high and positive social impact. Positive investing activities tend to target underserved communities. These efforts support activities designed to provide mortgage and small business credit to minority and low-income communities. It is in this area that Fannie and Freddie are most active.

According to their web sites:

"Freddie Mac is a stockholder-owned corporation chartered by Congress to increase the supply of money that mortgage lenders, such as commercial banks, mortgage bankers, savings institutions and credit unions, can make available to homebuyers and multifamily investors."

and

"Fannie Mae is a private, shareholder-owned company that works to make sure mortgage money is available for people in communities all across America. We do not lend money directly to home buyers. Instead, we work with lenders to make sure they don't run out of mortgage funds, so more people can achieve the dream of homeownership. Fannie Mae is the country's third largest corporation, in terms of assets, and the nation's largest provider of funds for home mortgages."

Clearly, these are positive investing activities. Carried out consistently and correctly, these activities have a high social impact.

Background: Socially responsible investing and the secondary mortgage markets

Let me now speak about my efforts in both socially responsible investing and the secondary mortgage markets.

In a 1996 article in the Washington Post, I commented that "It seems their (Freddie and Fannie's) primary mission has been completed and completed successfully. Now its time to look for a different mission, which could include finding mortgage money for low income parts of the District and housing the homeless." Others have echoed this sentiment. FRB Chairman Greenspan noted, in a letter to the Chairman dated 5/19/2000, "(The GSE's) were each chartered with the purpose of smoothing out regional imbalances in mortgage supply and integrating regional mortgage markets into the national capital markets. Much to their credit, they succeeded in accomplishing this goal many years ago. It is time to assign a new mission to the GSE's. I have outlined some suggestions below.

As many who have come before this committee have noted, domestic housing finance markets are broad and well functioning. In looking for a new mission, I suggest the GSE's focus on investment opportunities in housing markets populated by minorities and women. These markets have been the beneficiaries of an unprecedented increase in financial market activity and asset values. Devoting even a small percentage of GSE mortgage financing activity to markets populated by persons of low to moderate income, minorities and women will help even the distribution of income and wealth, contribute to domestic political and economic stability, and earn a competitive return. It is my belief that investors, women, and minorities are all well served by these efforts. Further, I believe it is possible to create investments and portfolios that perform well financially and that address social concerns. I have uncovered many investment opportunities of this type. Let me describe one such investment opportunity.

I currently work for the Board of Pensions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. There, I manage Social Purpose Investing and Customer Education efforts. The Board of Pensions was one of the first socially responsible investors of significant size in the United States.

Prior to joining the Board of Pensions of the ELCA in 1999, I served as CEO of Creative Investment Research, an independent investment research and management firm I founded in 1989. The firm specialized in socially responsible investing. My background in finance and investing led me to develop several socially responsible community investment products over the past 10 years. One of these was a set of mortgage-backed securities originated by financial institutions owned by minorities and women and serving areas of high social need. As noted in the American Banker Newspaper , I was the first investment advisor to create a mortgage-backed security composed entirely of loans from minority and women owned financial institutions. Working with G.E. Capital , I identified minority owned lenders willing to participate in the program, arranged G.E. Capital's participation as aggregator of the loans originated by these minority owned financial institutions, and worked to place the pools with a socially responsible institutional pension fund as an investment advisor.

Several times, I approached Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to further develop these types of products. Unfortunately, at the time neither agency was interested or very helpful.

Social Investing Concerns: GSE's

Given their public purpose and mission, social investors have long believed Fannie and Freddie to be both positive investors and good corporate citizens. In the main and for the most part, they are. But, I have been troubled by certain aspects of GSE corporate behavior over the years. I am most deeply concerned with a recently issued report on GSE home mortgage lending to minorities. The report, issued by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, showed "the share of GSE mortgages going to minorities trailed the national average of 15.3 percent. Fannie Mae lent only 14 percent and Freddie Mac lent only 12.2 percent to minorities.

The disparity is even more pronounced in mortgages to black Americans. While the total market for mortgages to blacks is 5 percent, Fannie Mae only lent 3.2 percent and Freddie Mac lent only 3.0."

Both Freddie and Fannie dispute these numbers. I expect the debate concerning GSE performance in this area to be a lively one. However one views the statistics, I think we can all agree that much remains to be done in this sector of the home mortgage market. By reducing the flow of mortgages to minorities, GSE's have ignored profitable domestic lending opportunities. This behavior reduces GSE income and stifles the flow of mortgage credit. This, I think we all agree, is contrary to their public mission and is, in general, a bad thing.

We have seen other financial institutions repeat this behavior. On October 22, 1998, Freddie Mac Board member and economist Henry Kaufman, speaking of the Russian financial crisis, noted in the Washington Post that:

"All the problems pervading Wall Street just can't be blamed on outside forces..Institutions have incorrectly assessed risk. If they had done their due diligence, a lot of this (the Russian financial crisis) mess would not have happened."

Likewise, all of the uncertainty Freddie and Fannie now face cannot be blamed on outside forces, like Congress or HUD, or incorrectly interpreted statistics. The GSE's have incorrectly assessed home mortgage loan risk in minority markets. We agree with Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan when he said:

"The history of financial involvement in increasing home ownership is one of taking risks - of designing new financial instruments and financial products to make financial resources available so that more people can realize the goal of home ownership. Taking prudent risks in lending so that others may attain an objective is the essential role of a financial intermediary..."

It is certainly appropriate for Congress to review both GSE financial performance and their public mission performance. We suggest Congress refocus Fannie and Freddie efforts. We would like to see the GSE's become much more active in the affordable housing area. Needs in this area are great. According to HUD,

The housing affordability crisis facing very-low-income renters continues to worsen as 5.4 million renter households, a record high, are experiencing worst case needs for housing assistance.

The number of working families with worst case housing needs has increased sharply since 1991.

The stock of rental units that are affordable to extremely low-income renters has continued to shrink, with even sharper decreases in units that are both affordable and available to these renters.

Worst case needs have become more concentrated among families with extremely low incomes.

Worst case needs have increased most quickly in minority households, particularly among working families with children.

Very-low-income families remain most likely to face worst case problems when they live in the suburbs.

Other Concerns

Other events have caused concern. On September 3, 1998, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission concluded there was widespread discrimination against black employees at Freddie Mac. Acting on a complaint filed by Tony Morgan, a person of color once employed in a professional capacity on Capital Hill and Freddie Mac's former director of corporate relations, the EEOC said the Congressionally chartered, publicly held company created a ``hostile work environment.'' This "hostile environment" may have impacted Freddie's ability and desire to make loans to African Americans. One way this is likely to manifest itself is in the evaluation of risk. The perceived riskiness of loans to African Americans is likely to be overstated.

In addition, I have been discouraged by certain comments made by executives at both Freddie and Fannie when questioned by members of Congress. It is critically important that management at these agencies understand Congress has a legitimate role in reviewing their activities, both from the standpoint of financial safety and soundness and with respect to the public mission the organizations were chartered to carry out.

I note that the Chairman has been examining GSE activities since at least 1996. Only recently I have seen a change in GSE attitude.

H.R. 3703

Mr. Chairman, I would now like to turn to your legislative proposal.

Promoting Private Market Discipline

I support repealing the GSEs' conditional line of credit with the Treasury. I agree with Treasury Under Secretary Gary Gensler when he stated, in testimony on March 22, 2000 before this Committee, that: "Repeal of the line of credit would be consistent with the congressional requirement that all GSE securities carry a disclaimer that they are not obligations of the U.S. government."

Increasing Transparency

I support provisions in the bill that increase transparency. I also support provisions in the bill that require the GSE's to receive an annual credit rating from nationally recognized statistical rating organizations. Such an examination would significantly improve transparency by providing an independent and objective opinion concerning the GSE's financial condition.

I also suggest that the GSE's be subject to a through "Social Audit." A Social Audit is an examination of the performance of an enterprise relative to certain social objectives. The GSE's are currently subject to a limited social audit: Central city and minority lending goals have been established and progress in meeting those goals is reviewed each year. Reports on GSE performance in meeting certain lending goals are then made public. I am suggesting, however, that the GSE's be subject to a more detailed and rigorous social audit covering all aspects of their operations.

For the GSE's the major benefits of a social audit are:

Improved accountability with respect to social and community investment activities

Increased social efficiency and effectiveness

Ability to effectively monitor and steer social performance

Social achievements reported in an unbiased manner

Promoting Market Competition

I support provisions in the Bill to preserve market competition.

Structural issues

I support the creation of a fully independent GSE regulator. I further suggest this regulator not part of the executive branch. As an alternative, the Chairman may wish to consider designating the Federal Reserve Board the primary GSE financial institution regulator.

I believe the Fed will, one day, need to oversee the activities of banks, thrifts, pension funds, insurance companies, mutual fund companies, brokerage firms and investment banks. Recent advancements in financial and computer technology require the creation of such a strong central bank.

I strongly suggest that the Executive Branch's role be limited. Recent incidents have reinforced my fear that political interference may limit Executive branch regulatory effectiveness and objectivity. I refer the committee to one recent incident:

"A top federal bank regulator, responding to concerns over possible political interference in bank examinations, has ordered his staff to quit fielding a list of friendly bankers to support a controversial fair lending law.

John D. Hawke Jr., acting Comptroller of the Currency, told his staff in a memo issued Friday that bank examinations must be 'kept completely free from even the appearance of being influenced by political considerations.' The comptroller, an arm of the Treasury Department, regulates 2,600 national banks."

We have observed this type of inappropriate behavior before, preceding the S&L Crisis of the 1980's, and more recently, with the Community Development Financial Institution program, a financial institution program administered by Treasury. According to the House Banking Committee:

"$37 Million Clinton Inner-City Loan Fund in Disarray and subject to Political Cronyism. 1 in 3 Grants To First Lady's Favorite.

A $37 million Clinton Administration campaign centerpiece designed to overcome perceived inequities in bank lending to poor and inner-city clients appears to be in disarray, is without adequate standards for making grants, and has at least the appearance of conflicts of interest that 'raises questions concerning the fairness of the system,' a senior House Banking Committee member said today."

In this case, critical federal assistance and funding was determined to have been distributed, in part, based on political ties and not on efficiency, market requirements, performance or need. Given this, I believe making an executive branch agency the chief GSE institution regulator may have quite negative consequences. The Federal Reserve System, an independent body, is not subject to and has not been shown to engage in this type of politically biased regulatory interference

Conclusion

In an interdependent financial world, with capital and information flows often determining the short term fate of nations, it is entirely appropriate for this committee to review the proper role and function of the GSE's. Given the speed with which capital market destabilization can occur, as shown during the Long Term Capital Management (LTCM) incident, a strong, unbiased, and politically independent GSE regulator can be an essential tool assisting Congress with its GSE oversight responsibilities.

This Committee has done the country a great service by focusing on the impact GSE's have on the long term stability of the U.S. financial system. I applaud the Committee for doing so in a balanced, thoughtful manner.

http://www.creativeinvest.com/fnma/fnmapr16.html

 

 


The USA is being turned into the USSA (United Socialist State of America)

commentary by Bob Barney

Today we have witnessed what I wrote about last spring about the eventual demise of the United States as a superpower and the Biblical outlook that we are destined to be destroyed by aliens among us as well as our dishonest leaders in Washington, with the nationalization of Fannie and Freddie, comrades Bush, Paulson and Bernanke has begun the conversion of the USA into the USSA (United Socialist State of America). This metamorphosis of the United States into a country where there is socialism for only the rich and well connected.  Wall Street (i.e. where profits are privatized and losses are socialized) continues  today with the nationalization of AIG as being owned by Uncle Sam!

This most recent exploit on AIG accompanies a diversity of many other policy actions that suggest a massive government intrusion in the financial markets and the economy: the bailout of the Bear Stearns; the bailout of Fannie and Freddie; the use of the Fed balance sheet (hundreds of billions of safe US Treasuries swapped for junk toxic  private securities); the use of the other GSEs (the Federal Home Loan Bank system) to provide hundreds of billions of dollars of "liquidity" to hard-pressed, illiquid and bankrupt mortgage lenders; the use of the SEC to falsify the stock market (restrictions on short sales); the use of the US Treasury to juggle with the mortgage market (Treasury will now for the first time outright buy agency MBS to manipulate and prop up this market); the invention of a whole host of new bailout facilities (TAF, TSLF, PDCF) to prop and rescue crooked banks and, for the first time since the Great Depression, to bail out non-bank financial institutions; the recent extension of the collateral available for the TSLF and PDCF facilities to a much wider range of toxic securities including equities and thus allowing the Fed to effectively manipulate even the stock market; Furthermore, a whole range of other executive and legislative actions (including the recent bill to provide a public guarantee to mortgages for banks willing to reduce their face value).

The truth is that the government should bail out the masses who were duped by our government leaders that everything was safe in our sick economy, but those who profited from this crime must be jailed, every dime of the money taken away and criminal investigations into our leaders that have knowingly caused this travesty to happen. Friends, THIS IS A CRIME that is bigger than anything that has ever happened to this country, and I make the claim that these crimes are treasonous and thereby carries the death penalty. Our Secretary of the Treasury has insured that his former company is the only one left standing on Wall Street after the Lehman fiasco. This was planned! Make no mistake about it. Mark 9-15 down as a day more important to our history than 9-11! September 15th is the beginning of the end of our democracy. Yes, we may last another ten to fifty years, but the seeds of our destruction have been laid. Only God hidden hand can ever allow us to recover from what has just happened. Our leaders are merging us into a world government under the authority of the Beast that will arise in Europe. Our freedoms are being dissolved and we will soon be in captivity. May America wake up NOW and stop this from happening! It is a time to pray.


Gold prices post biggest 1-day gain ever

NEW YORK (AP) - Gold prices exploded Wednesday—posting the biggest one-day gain ever in dollar terms—as fears of more credit market turmoil unnerved investors and triggered a flood of safe-haven buying.

Gold for December delivery rose as much as $90.40, or 11.6 percent, to $870.90 an ounce in after-hours trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange after jumping $70 to settle at $850.50 in the regular session. That was the biggest one-day price jump ever; gold's previous single-day record was a $64 gain on Jan. 29, 1980. In percentage terms, it was gold's largest one-day advance since 1999.

The huge rally came after the government moved overnight to rescue troubled insurer American International Group Inc. with an $85 million bailout loan. The Federal Reserve stepped in after AIG, teetering on collapse from losses tied to the subprime crisis and the credit crisis, failed to find adequate capital in the private sector. ..more...


One Heck Of A First Day!

The New Plain Truth site was launched yesterday (live really since last Friday) and in only one day our traffic was tremendous! In just one day we went up 16 million positions in the Alexa rankings!Thank You!

ALEXA.COM RANKINGS:

Traffic Rank for Theplaintruth.com: What's This?

Alexa traffic rank based on a combined measure of page views and users (reach)

Yesterday1 wk. Avg3 mos. Avg.
N/A*  488,466 up 16,543,730 

Welcome to the new The Plain Truth dot Com!

     Welcome to the new fresh look of The Plain Truth! From this day forwards, this news site can be easily remembered without trying to remember our old AOL link, just simply  type:www.theplaintruth.com (or even www.plaintruth.com) and you will go directly to our new site! This is the final culmination of a ten year goal. Our www.racerap.com readers are probably not aware of this, but The Plain Truth was being planned long before RaceRap! Our goal has been to give our readers a complete view of today's news and to show that much of what is going on has been predicted long ago by God in His Holy Bible.

          We are not a religious site! We are not a church! This is a news site dedicated to bring our readers the news, plain and simply. Yet, unlike almost any other media organization out there, we understand that there is a God and that no news is complete unless the readers understands that God does make news and change the news! Many stories that we all read in the mainstream media give you the story, but they do not explain the 'why' behind the story! That is what we plan to do.

          We will also have a message page soon, that will allow you, the reader, to post story links that you feel is important and allow others to comment about. Also, each story that we put up has a comment section, and we encourage everyone to comment on these stories as well! There is also a section where you will see 5 stars, that is for our readers to rate each story that we put up! This is like a feedback section for us! It is our hope that our readers will become our best reporters! Find those stories that nobody is talking about and post them on the message board. Discuss your views on God, tell us what you agree with, and what you don't. Add carefully thought out opinions and commentaries.

          Another unique feature is our sister page YOUR HEALTH TODAY. This will keep our readers up to date on the latest health news available, as well as stories on God's views on good health. Remember, God wants us all to live long and healthy lives and in the pages of the Bible, we can find many instructions by our Creator on achieving these promises!

          It is my strong belief that The Plain Truth will become a popular well known news and comment website, but it will take you to make it happen.     

Thanks,

Bob Barney


A Depression Coming?

by Bob Barney
People just don't want to deal with this, but the United States and the entire world is on the brink of a 1929 style crash that could effect world history and Biblical prophecy! It is very important indeed that our readers understand that the Bible predicts a world-wide depression before the emergence of a world dictator known as the 'King of the North'. This global depression, much like the one in 1929 will result in a world gone mad and will fuel the satanic plans of the Hitler-like madman who will eventually bring Armageddon to our door. Worldwide depressions cause totalitarianism. just look at what is happening again in Russia!

I am not yet predicting a world wide depression on the magnitude of 1929, which gave us WWII, what I am saying is to WATCH the signs of it and understand what could be fueling this mess that the world is in today!
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