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Bully Pulpit

The term "bully pulpit" stems from President Theodore Roosevelt's reference to the White House as a "bully pulpit," meaning a terrific platform from which to persuasively advocate an agenda. Roosevelt often used the word "bully" as an adjective meaning superb/wonderful. The Bully Pulpit features news, reasoned discourse, opinion and some humor.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Where is the White House outrage over bonuses at Fannie, Freddie?

(By Ed Morrissey, Hot Air) - A nice catch from our friends at Investors Business Daily today paints a portrait at the selectiveness of class-warrior outrage in the Obama administration.  When AIG and other bailout recipients started to pay their remaining executives the bonuses for which they were contractually obligated, Barack Obama led a chorus of outrage against the private-sector firms:

Shortly after taking office, President Obama reacted to Wall Street bonuses handed out in January 2009 with incredibly harsh language, calling them “shameful” and “the height of irresponsibility.”

“Folks on Wall Street who are asking for help need to show some restraint and show some discipline and show some sense of responsibility,” he said. A few months later, Obama pledged that there would be “no more bonuses for companies that taxpayers are helping out,” calling them a violation of “our fundamental values.”

But by far the biggest recipient of bailout money are the two government-linked lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have paid millions in bonuses while the White House remains curiously silent:

Not only where they at the epicenter of the housing bubble, but also the government had to take them over, pumping in cash to cover their huge losses on the mortgages they owned and guaranteed. And far from paying taxpayers back, the best-case scenario for Fannie and Freddie is that their bailout will cost over $120 billion.

But that didn’t stop the two agencies from giving their top 10 executives $12.8 million in bonuses for meeting what have been charitably described as “modest goals.”


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