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tv   The Dylan Ratigan Show  MSNBC  April 27, 2010 4:00pm-5:00pm EDT

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well good afternoon to you, i'm dylan ratigan. right now we're tracking two developing stories on capitol hill. goldman executives ducking even the most basic questions about their role in the economic crisis that brought this nation to its knees. meanwhile, lawmakers just minutes away from a vote that could finally bring a full debate on bank reform to the floor of the senate. imagine. also, mexicans warned not to
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travel to arizona for fear of harassment, understandably so. and the newest star of the fashion world has emerged -- it's a giant rat from louisiana. the show starts right now. well two big stories in america today, both with big implications for how we as a country and as a government define capitalism in this country. and we're talking about both of them right now. first, the senate just minutes away from a second vote to open up the financial reform bill to a legitimate floor debate. will the white knights like bernie sanders be given the opportunity to improve legislation through a provision to break up the banks and stop the cops working for the crooks. we've got our eyes and ears on capitol hill and we'll be talking to republican senator, jim bunning, live in the moments to come as to what the republican alternative plan may
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be. but first, just feet away from the senate floor, the top bosses at goldman sachs getting grilled by a senate committee, about their pro tensionally fraudulent mortgage deals, in what's turned into a marathon hearing. one by one, starting with the fabulous fab himself, goldman executives all day. maintaining they did nothing wrong. >> i deny category gically the s.e.c.'s allegations and i will defend myself in court against this false claim. goldman sachs had no economic motive to design the ac-1 transaction to fail. >> they were honestly trying to do their job and rate the deals. >> we left money on the table. >> and goldman trying to paint itself as a company that had the best interests of both its clients and the entire country in mind. watch -- >> the culture at goldman sachs was one in which excellence and integrity are expected. >> i take great pride for having worked for goldman sachs for almost 15 years and greatly
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admire the firm's integrity, commitment to client service and ethics. >> but the reality is this -- 60%, almost two-thirds of goldman's business is in proprietiry trading making bets not on behalf of clients, not creating ipo's, not raising money for koorpgss, but prop trading on behalf of the firm with special benefits grantsed only to boopnks that subsidized by you. goldman extracting massive amounts of money from our economy with benefit to no one but themselves. money for them, nothing for you, goldman sachs has figured out a way to take money out of the system and they're not alone. this has been the model for wall street for more than a decade, thanks to the decisions of bob reuben and larry summers who are still in the president's office. think of it like harrah's casino, these banks. claiming that their main business is to provide buffet
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dinners to senior citizens -- really. and then there's this, goldman insisting that they lost money on the mortgage meltdown and were simply managing their risk. >> goldman sachs, i think, lost a fair amount of money, because goldman retained a fair amount of risk on those deals. >> yeah, i mean even including the short-selling you did on them? >> that's why i would need to go back and net it off. >> don't worry, mr. sparks, we checked some of the numbers for you. and yes, goldman sachs did lose $1.2 billion. a lot of money in the housing collapse. good fortune for them, they bought insurance with leverage on that investment that they lost $1 billion on and got $12.9 billion, no the counting a variety of other factors through the back-door bailout green-lighted by the exact same angry senators, yelling at them today. those senators, attacking goldman's continued attempts to skirt that i questions. >> the jargon is complicated. you've relied on that
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complicated situation to avoid a lot of scrutiny. >> it's not going to work. we're going to stay here as long as it takes to get this information. >> i'm starting to share the chairman's frustration. could you give me a yes? >> our first guest today, connecticut attorney general, richard blumenthal, who himself is looking into goldman sachs. if anything, mr. blumenthal, did we learn new information today? >> we learned that there are even more deals than the one involved in the s.e.c. allegations. there is timberwolf and anderson mezzanine and a bunch of other deals where the same m.o., the same modus operandi, the same conflict of interest, giving the same priority of paulson and others, this kind of m.o., i think gives very powerful ammunition to reformers, advocates and critics, like myself, who have said for some
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years, that this model needs to be repaired and financial regulatory reform is long overdue. and as you pointed out, the congress in some ways has been complicit in this system of insuring the goldman sachs and there are more than just goldman sachs, other investment banks, who wanted to short their positions and then collect it on the insurance. >> and to that end, we have the -- goldman sachs was actually only number nine in the number of deals like this. merrill lynch was number one, deutsche bank, ubs, aig, which is headquartered in your state, the obvious counterparty. here's a characterization from one of the deals from committee chairman, senator carl levin. take a listen. >> you're trying to sell a [ bleep ] deal. and it's your top priority. come on, mr. sparks. should goldman sachs be trying to sell -- and by the way, it sold a lot of it after that date. should goldman sachs be trying to sell this [ bleep ] deal?
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can you answer that one? can you answer that one? >> is that a crime, in any form, in other words, if i'm the buyer, and it is a, an asset described as it was, i won't bother using the word here, it will create a meeting after the show that i don't need. but the reality is, that sort of thing is not necessarily illegal, if the buyer knows that it's a piece of crap and it's priced like a piece of crap, correct? richard? >> the issue there is one of disclosure. and that's the reason that they have been sued by the s.e.c. if they had properly represented the deal, if the credit rating agencies had properly assessed it, there might be an argument that they were selling what the buyer knew he or she was getting. but your point, and the point here again and again and again is -- that the fraud is the
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deception and the lie. and that kind of practice combined with the conflicts of interest where goldman sachs was not only allegedly deceiving its clients, but also profiting, is truly reprehensible. i think implicates the rating agencies right at the center of this whole scheme. and i think the financial regulatory reform measures have to include some change in that business model, as well as the glass-stegall restoration. >> and the current proposal does not do that. the ratings agencies still work for the banks in senator dodd's current proposal. we've got the abacus transaction right here. in he can, richard, were we watching the banks and the rating agencies cook the books in order to sell these things as they were aaa, when they were not? >> certainly there is more and more evidence that there was conspiracy, perhaps not in the
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criminal-legal sense, but possibly. and there is certainly strong reason for continued vigorous investigation. not only by the s.e.c., but by the department of justice and by states. that in many respects, were victims because our pension funds, our teachers, fireamen, s well as ordinary citizens, investors were truly victims here. and again, a powerful argument for stopping any effort to bar the states and state authorities, from their involveme involvement. the so-called preemption that many congressmen want and many federal agencies to bar the state certainly has no merit if we view these facts. >> richard, a pleasure, thank you for the time. we'll talk to you sooner rather than later. richard blumenthal. not only where aig is headquartered, in connecticut, but so many unregulated hedge funds in our country, that
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participate in the schemes with the bankers are headquartered. much more on the story coming up, details you don't know, or maybe misinformed about on the goldman case. but right now, you and i, all of us are less than a half-hour away from a second senate vote on financial reform. after failing to get the 60 votes needed to start any sort of debate on the democrats' current plan last night, majority leader, harry reid, is set to try it again today. the more republicans stonewall it, the more fodder the democrats are given to characterize the gop as wall street sympathizers. >> we want to bring our bill to the floor so we can discuss it, debate it, amend it, improve it we want to do it in the open. the republican senators are willing to talk about financial reform with press conferences. and other media events. why weren't they willing to talk about it here on the floor? >> democrats effectively daring republicans to vote no again clearly pressure mounting to do
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something, anything. but how do we get these politicians pressured to do the right thing, the smart thing? and not just -- something. as we sit here, actual reforms like the kaufmann-brown plan to break up the banks exist. they just don't have very many people who represent us fighting for them against the bank lobbyists and all their money. so who will fight for real reform on behalf of the american people? maybe it is the republicans. joining us now, republican senator jim bunning of kentucky. senator, pleasure to see you, sir. talk to me about your view of what happened today with goldman sachs? >> well if they are tuactually guilty of what they have been accused of, they will pay the penalty. i don't know. they're going to have to go through a court of law. and i'll let the law, that judge and the jury decide that fact. but if they did what is in the
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s.e.c. account of what they did, they all ought to go to jail. >> talk to me, if you could, about your view on financial regulation. is there an explicit republican plan? >> there's a plan that differs from the democrat plan. because it addresses the problem of too big to fail. >> and how does it do that? >> well, by bringing in and reining in and making caps on how much money goldman sachs or citicorp or bank of america or any of these four major banks -- do you know, dylan, there are four banks including those i mentioned, that control one-half of our gdp? >> it's actually, i think 63% on the -- i'm aware. it's unbelievable. >> i'm going to use a reasonable
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number. and just say over 50%. that's over $7 trillion. so if we don't limit their growth, and bring them under control, we're always going to build too big to fail into the legislation. we have to stop that. and stop it as cold in its tracks as we can. and the democratic bill, to start with, doesn't do that. so we have to change the bill so that we can start from a reasonable position. it doesn't take care of derivatives or credit default swaps. >> sure it does, that's not true. >> no, it does not. >> explain to me your -- let's do one issue at a time though, quite honestly. let me ask you a question. does the republican plan mirror what we see in kaufmann-brown in terms of limiting the percentage of gdp in assets that a given
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bank can hold as liabilities or assets? >> no. >> so what is the plan? >> it needs to be negotiated. because we have to have chris dodd and the democrats agree to a certain point where we can start to debate on the floor of the u.s. senate. it's full lease for the republicans to go to the floor and have a health care bill that we can debate because they refuse to debate it. they just accepted what was there and what the obama administration put forth. 60% of the american people said that's the wrong approach. the same with financial reform. you can't blame us -- >> no, we can blame both parties, believe me, i was -- >> you go ahead and blame us. but look at the contributions. >> i will. i get the contributions. let's not have the argument. the republican party supervised
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the bailout. the democratic party liberalized the laws. >> some of us didn't, dylan. >> and i respect that, i know that you didn't, senator, and i don't mean to suggest that you -- >> you're saying that republicans. i'm a republican and i voted no. >> and i appreciate that and we all appreciate that. but a republican president walked out in front of the american people and handed over $4.6 trillion to these bankers for this gambling as you know. and no one can explain to us, the taxpayers, why that is. i completely respect and appreciate what you're saying about too big to fail and i couldn't encourage you more to do that. >> i'll tell you this -- the secretary of the treasury, paulson, the president of the united states, george w. bush, and ben bernanke came selling armageddon to the congress of the united states. and i didn't buy it. and those who voted no on
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t.a.r.p. didn't buy it. and we had the collapse of our economy in spite of the fact that there was a t.a.r.p. >> i get it, i was there. we share the frustration, believe me we do i appreciate the fact that you're so passionate on the issue of too big to fail, and quite honestly, i couldn't seek to support you more in your efforts to establish a banking system that's adaptable that lends and invests money, as opposed to one that gambles with wheelbarrels of our money. >> you don't put $50 billion in a slush fund and expect it to cover too big to fail. >> of course. >> that's a joke. >> that's a joke, they're insulting us. >> and you want us to start negotiating that on the floor of the u.s. senate? no, we've got to bring harry reid to his senses and stop the bill before it gets to the floor, so that we can negotiate -- >> i look at my job as the one
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where i get to punch holes in the democrat's crappy plan and i look at your job as having to propose to us a better plan. so i guess my question to the other party, and i don't mean to put this all at your feet, senator, it's not fair to you. but -- >> we passed the fannie and freddie bailout. >> on christmas day. >> no, no, we did it four or five years ago, and the democrats scuttled it. >> i understand, senator. >> but where's the republican plan. you and i are not going to argue about whether this is screwed up. it's screwed up. what i'm trying to figure out is where is the political party in this country that can solve it. >> well, we're going to have to change the faces in the congress of the united states to get different people voting and that's one reason i thank god that i'm out of here in december. and give it to somebody new. because i have failed the
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american people. i'm not changing it. >> but between now and there, will the american people be given -- i know you'll fight. that's clear and we appreciate that. but beyond your fight or my fight or anybody else's. will american people be given the benefit of a comprehensive second plan that addresses this sort of casino gambling? >> yes. >> and when will we get that plan? >> when we get harry reid and chris dodd and the president of the united states to agree to a different starting point. >> why do we need them? why can't you just come out with a plan -- >> because they won't accept anything. >> people like me and arianna huffington, have restore lending investment, no care if you're the furthest rist-wing or left-wing person in this country. i guarantee you, senator, if the republicans, the democrats, the tea party, the anti-tea party, planned parenthood or anybody else, walks into the room with an actual plan to break up the
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banks, restore transparency in capital requirements, no matter what the president of the united states, no matter what the democratic leadership says, we will listen, we are desperate for a real solution. >> are you desperate for a solution on health care and we failed you there. >> yes. but there's a redemption opportunity here where i got a half-baked plan from the democrats on health care and i got no plan from the republicans. >> that's exactly what will pass if we put that on the floor of the u.s. senate, dylan. >> can we get a real republican plan, senator? >> yes, we've to negotiate with the democrats to get a real bipartisan plan if we're going to solve the problem. >> listen, senator, i can't thank you enough for the exchange and the interaction and the dialogue with me today. senator bunning, a true pleasure, thank you so much. we'll have much more on the financial reform vote coming up at the half-hour, heated for sure, including our conversation with democratic senator, byron dorgan, who raised the red flag
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on these risky derivatives. like this abacus deal. you paid for it. he warned about it 15 years ago. but first, the national and international implications of arizona's controversial immigration law. we'll mix it up, coming up. [ male announcer ] if you've had a heart attack caused by a completely blocked artery, another heart attack could be lurking, waiting to strike. a heart attack caused by a clot, one that could be fatal. but plavix helps save lives. plavix, taken with other heart medicines, goes beyond what other heart medicines do alone, to provide greater protection against heart attack or stroke and even death by helping to keep blood platelets from sticking together and forming clots. ask your doctor about plavix. protection that helps save lives. people with stomach ulcers or other conditions that cause bleeding should not use plavix. taking plavix alone or with some other medicines including aspirin may increase bleeding risk,
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back to mix it up on another hot story. the travel warning for arizona from mexico. it's become an international response to arizona's
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controversial new immigration law. the mexican government issuing an alert to citizens, warning of potential harassment for anyone traveling in arizona. the alert says the new law, which lets police arrest anyone not carrying proper documentation shows a quote adverse political atmosphere for all mexican visitors to that state. u.s. attorney general eric holder says that the federal government could change the law. >> the justice department, along with the department, along with dhs is looking at the law. to decide exactly how we are going to react to it. i think that it is, i fear, subject to potential abuse. >> meantime, the debate flaring up far beyond arizona. protests in san francisco, kansas city and other cities across the country. here to mix it up. founder of fire dog leg and conservative talk show host martha zoeller. how violent do you think this gets, both in the streets and in
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the political debate, before we get to july 4th? >> oh, i think it's going, i don't think it's going to continue on for a long period of time. look, this is a response to the federal government not doing its job. and i support arizona in what they're doing. and for eric holder to say the law could be misinterpreted, that can happen with any law, it's all how you implement it. >> jane? >> i think conservatives and liberals are both rightly concerned about this law. jeb bush and marco rubio both coming out in opposition to it. people caring about civil liberties are going to be doomed to suffer under those draconian laws and we should all be concerned about civil liberties being abridged toor any community. >> what is your sense of how much heat there is on the street of arizona and in the border states? and how much heat there is in washington to address it? >> there's a lot of heat on the streets that existed before this bill came around. immigrants who had come out and
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voted for obama, the hispanic community, who were wanting to have immigration addressed and they just punted. i will agree that washington should have addressed it. but they were looking at a situation where nothing was happening, and then this happens it may be the match that goetz thrown into the pile of straw that's going to burn and not be good for anybody. >> but the federal government is pulling the plug on the virtual fence, which was working. it was not -- a debacle. they've pulled the plug on trying to help arizona. arizona asked for help. and the tipping point was when a man was murdered in on his own property. and that was the tipping point in arizona. so that's what's going -- this is what we're going to have to deal with. and i certainly don't want to assume that the police are going to abuse the law before the law goes into place. >> there's a bigger question -- as we look at this, knowing that the border states have a real crisis on their hands, depending on which state and which situation. knowing that the rest of the country is relatively indifferent to that and quite
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honestly, happy to eat fruit picked by illegals, have their dinner bussed by illegal immigrants or have illegals clean their homes. because they're not coming in in new york or chicago or toronto or any place else. >> aren't you guilty of the same thing that you're assuming every person you see is a bus boy. every person that you see -- >> no, no, i'm not, that's a different issue, martha. what i'm saying is it is a mathematical fact, i have the percentages. a huge percentage of those who pick fruit, a huge percentage of those who clean homes, a huge percentage of those who work in the restaurant and service industry are illegal immigrants. and no one complains about the discounted price of the fruit, the discounted price of the meal or anything else. and at the end of the day, are we hypocritical to leave our poor border states to deal with the mess, while the northern states effectively indulge the benefits of the cheap labor? >> and it's not just, it's not just the border states. georgia had the toughest laws before arizona passed these
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laws. because we had one of the highest level of illegal immigration. but you're right, there's a hand flg of about 13 or 14 states, that are being affected strongly by this and the federal government needs to do its job. >> this conversation obviously has more in it, jane, a pleasure, nice to so you, martha, same to you. enjoy your afternoon. in "busted," a lawmaker with everything going on in washington that we talk about every day here on this show. and we know what it is. well, he's going to go on an expensive farewell tour instead of dealing with it saying good-bye to his constituents on his taxpayers' dime. thanks for that. but first -- on the rat walk. ♪ i'm too sexy for your body ♪ too sexy for your body >> the nutria rat. star of the bayou. the gulf coast of louisiana. has become the latest star of the fashion world. we'll explain after this. (annou) we believe in giving every investor a lot more for a lot less.
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so you get them at ridiculously low prices. ♪ h-o-t-w-i-r-e ♪ hotwire.com welcome back. take two, you are looking at live pictures of the senate floor, and a second crucial vote on the progress of financial reform in this country at issue. whether senator dodd's current proposal will be allowed to move forth for debate. that is what they're voting on. shall we debate this or shall we not? it's a good thing if it means the bill will get toughened up. it's a bad thing if the bill gets fast-tracked for a quick vote in its current weakened form in order to avoid debate. and democrats lost last night's first test coming up three votes short of what's call ee ee eed
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to make this happen. local millionaire, warren buffett who apparently doesn't want to post collateral for his derivatives. a man that predicted the risks to the financial system 15 years ago, democratic senator, byron dorgan live with us from the russell rotunda, senator dorgan, we hear a lot of other people using your language about the danger of derivatives, the need for transparency, capital rirths, end too big to fail. lending and investing. are we actually go to see those who are talking the talk today, walk the walk? >> well i don't know. we'll see. i mean we lost a vote last night. we'll have a vote start in just a moment here in the senate. if not, we'll have a vote tomorrow and the next day and the next day. the fact is, this is a vote on should we proceed to address this issue on the floor of the senate. we'll have amendments, we'll have the ability to strengthen the bill. should we proceed.
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and the republicans, every single one of them have voted to say no, we don't even want to proceed. that's unbelievable to me. >> i spoke with senator bunning a moment ago. i've talked in the past few days with senator coburn, who are the two senators i've had a chance to speak with on the republican side. both fairly aggressive in their rhetoric to break up the banks ordeal with too big to fail in some fashion. what is your view of the kaufmann-brown amendment, the safe banking act as a mechanism to protect all of us from being distorted by the big banks as we were in '08. >> i'll support that amendment. but i'll be offering another amendment. we'll give our friends, senator coburn and senator bunning a chance to vote on that. once you've been judged too big to fail, then you ask for divestiture. i mean we did that standard oil. we did it with at&t. but you pare these institutions
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back so they're not a moral hazard or a systemic risk to our economy. i've prepared an amendment to do that so we'll give the folks a chance to vote to see if they really mean what they say. >> what account folks who are watching this debate, who look at yourself and a few others as white knights on this issue, those who believe in lending and investing in actual capitalism as opposed to secret bank gambling as a model for our economy. what can they do to help the white knights move this in the right direction for the country, smart direction. >> plug the phone lines. call people on capitol hill it say get right with this one other issue that i'm going to offer an amendment on, is abolishing naked credit default swaps. how does a credit default swap get naked? it's a swap that has no insurable interest on any side. it's just a flat-out bet. it's not an investment. it's a wager, those belong in las vegas or atlantic city. but not in the middle of our banking institutions.
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especially when the american taxpayer totally picks up the tab for the loss. >> how much of a split is there inside the democratic party in addressing these issues? >> there's some. but the democratic caucus is pretty unified on these things. our problem is the republican caucus. every single one of them voted yesterday to say we don't even want to debate this issue. we won't even allow you to proceed. so the problem is not with democrats, the problem is with the republicans at this point. they say they're doing this because they want to strengthen the bill. does anybody really believe that the republicans want to strengthen a bill to put the brakes on bad behavior by investment banks? i don't think so. >> i asked senator bunning if they had a plan to deal with too big to fail. the republicans keep claiming they will have a plan, but no one has submitted it to us here at msnbc. have you seen any formal plan to address too big to fail, derivative reform, ratings agencies relative to the banks? the list is pretty simple at this point. have you seen any such plan? >> none. in fact the only plan that
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exists is the one that came out of the banking committee by senator dodd and the plan from the agriculture committee by senator lincoln. they've been merged. and in fact when the bill came out of the banking committee, the republicans did not offer any amendments at all. they just didn't participate. so you know, we need to get this bill on the floor. and then we need to improve it there's some things i'm going to offer to improve it naked credit default swaps. we'll try to ban them. and if you're too big to fail, you're too big and we need to peel it back through divestiture. >> one last question, it goes to the goldman sachs trial today. i'm holding the prospectus for the abacus deal. the car that they're accused of having built designed to blow up. sells it to somebody else, it blows up, they make a bunch of money. the taxpayer pays out on the bee. here's the question for you, senator. how are devices like this, that is a bet referencing a bunch of residential mortgage-backed securities, worth $2 billion of money, that i don't even know if
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anybody in the bet has the money. how is this capitalism? how do wagers like this facilitate lending or investment to businesses? >> somebody said investment banking is like to productive enterprise like mud wrestling is to the performing arts. we need to go back to banking the old-fashioned way. take deposits, make loans. we've become a casino society at some of the top financial firms and that has to stop. you need financing. we need to produce, we need to finance production in this country. that's why we need to fix the financial sector. it got far out of whack and it needs to be fixed. >> what's your degree of confidence compared to 15 years ago that we'll be able to address the too big to fail and the ratings -- >> we'll know it when we get to the floor. i'm hoping given what we face as a country, we've lost about $15 trillion, had about $12 trillion in bailouts for lent, spent or provided by the fed and others to firms that got into bad trouble. my hope is that if that lesson
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is not an indelible lesson to persuade the congress and the american people, we've got to do dramatic things here to make sure it never happens again. i don't guess we'll ever learn the lesson, i have some real hope that that will be the case here. >> senator dorgan, the white knights seem to have the wind at their back. we can only hope. still ahead, myth and misinformation in the goldman sachs case. this, the signature of 21st-century news, you can't tell what's true and what's false. so i can hide anything i want in plain sight. what you may not know about this lawsuit against goldman sachs. we'll break it down with barry ritholtz after this. anncr vo: with the new geico glovebox app... anncr vo: ...you can get help with a flat tire... anncr vo: ...find a nearby tow truck or gas station... anncr vo: ...call emergency services... anncr vo: ...collect accident information. anncr vo: or just watch some fun videos.
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welcome back. in today's "by the numbers," we're talking about the hot new look for men. we're going to take a break, have a minute of fun.
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men's fashion this fall -- gentlemen, please, pay attention. actually it is fur is the new thing for men. this fall. and it's fur from the nutria. sounds interesting, i suppose. there it is. it is a gigantic aquatic rat that roams the bayou along the gulf coast of this country and grows to be -- i don't know, two, two and a half feet long. weighs about 20 pounds. men's designer, no joke. men's designer, billy reed using nutria in his fall 2010 collection as a fur lining for hats, gloves and jackets. he's out telling "vanity fair" quote, i love the masculinity of it, it's sort of the bad-ass of fur, the swamp rat. nutria are threatening to overrun the gulf coast. in the last six months alone, louisiana trappers have collected, which i do believe hunted, killed, yes, i don't know how they collect them. maybe they're on a farm, 445,000
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tails of nutria, getting $5 a pop from the state wildlife commission for those tails. now nutria pelts are being promoted as an environmentally-responsible way to use fur in fashion. we didn't check with peta. i don't know whether the swamp rat complies, i don't think so. still ahead in "busted" -- back to the grindstone here. the lawmakers and their global getaways, as a retirement gift to themselves, paid for by you, as -- washington functions the way we all know that it does when we talk about it each day. and in "busted" -- uncle sam wants you for your donations to pay down our national debt as our government uses your tax money to subsidize bank gambling. we haven't gotten into the war yet, either. as if you haven't paid enough. i was like, yes, this works... [ male announcer ] only rogaine is proven to regrow hair in 85% of guys.
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welcome back. a little "busted" for you. as we do every day at this time. first up, a taxpayer-funded parting gift for congressman bart gordon. the tennessee democrat stepping down if his post after 13 terms. but instead of a gold watch or even an office party cake, gordon going out in style. and his constituents in tennessee? they're footing the bill. roll call reports that gordon spent tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars to fund a six-day trip later this week to
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italy and switzerland. that's his farewell tour. and next month he's expected to visit china all of these trips supposedly on official government business as his role of chairman of the science and technology committee. the report says that by june gordon will have taken six congressional trips in seven months. gordon's office issued a statement reading quote, the chairman believes strongly that there needs to be international collaboration to solve the major challenges facing the nation and the world. gordon takes almost any meeting asked of him from international counterparts who come to the u.s. that may be. but maybe the next trip he takes should be to visit a senate or house ethics committee. who's paying for these? and the country looks like this? next, the u.s. treasury accepting donations -- i told you this earlier. never mind the income tax that you pay from your paycheck. the treasury would now like you to dig just a little bit deeper, get in there, and get that --
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nothing there, right? dig a little deeper to pay off the national debt of this country that sits at $13 trillion, largely as a result of the very policies of the people who are there now and were there over the past decade. with that said, they're accepting donations online as of course they try to take as much money as they can from you every day. to pay off uncle sam's credit card, it would take a cool $30,000, from each and every person in this country. and then forget all of that for a second. a kudos to mascots that risk their lives for the team. take a look at this guy. banjo is the mascot of the emergency emergency bucs, he hits a back-flip dunk off the top of a 16-foot ladder before the playoff game. if the bucs win their series we give the credit to the mascot. one more time?
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there we go oh, yeah. still ahead, what you might not know about the case for goldman sachs and the questions all of those big bosses were trying to avoid today on capitol hill. and much more on "hardball" with chris matthews. the goldman hearing, senators john tester and macaskill asking questions. time dreaming up ways tdd# 1-800-345-2550 to give us more for our money. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 i guess i'd just like to see a little more give tdd# 1-800-345-2550 and a little less take, you know? tdd# 1-800-345-2550 if it was up to me, they'd spend a lot more time tdd# 1-800-345-2550 worrying about my bottom line. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 (announcer) at charles schwab, investors rule. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 are you ready to rule? rheumatoid arthritis going? they're discovering the first self-injectable ra medicine you take just once a month. it's simponi™, and taken with methotrexate, it helps relieve the pain,
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welcome back. financial reform not the only big story on capitol hill today. goldman sachs under the gun for its potentially fraudulent mortgage dealings, shady at best, illegal at worst. you know it's bad when a nevada
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senator takes offense to comparing wall street to a vegas casino. >> i think most people in las vegas would take offense at having wall street compared to las vegas. because in las vegas, actually people know that the odds are against them. they play, anyway. on wall street, they manipulate the odds while you're playing the game. >> not to mention in vegas, you actually have to incur your losses. on wall street, you have no losses, you give them to the government under the extortion of every pension fund and job in this country. financial analyst and blogger barry rit holtz compiled a list of things. the serk has a slam-dunk case based if nothing else on the fact that figures back up the accusations about goldman sachs short-selling. there's math that backs it up. or that goldman sachs was an isolated incident. if that was the case, goldman probably would have settled quietly as opposed to this huge fight because it may represent
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an institutional business for goldman sachs. not a one-off. then, there are the widespread claims that the white house urged the s.e.c. to file the suit now. to help make the case for financial reform. the fact is, this whole process started eight months ago, and neither proposal from either party addresses the problems. so drawing attention to a big pile of nothing. barry ridholtz for more analysis of what we did here today, you say this is a slam-dunk case as represented by the s.e.c. the defense of goldman sachs is the following. if i'm goldman sachs, and you're the buyer, this is the abacus paperwork. i told you, i said paulson is picking these, i'm picking these, aca are picking these, there's a yield on your investment. do you want it. isn't it on you now to evaluate what i'm selling you? and who cares what, what i'm doing, on the side? >> well there are three issues here. first issue is should we even be selling these. we'll hold that aside.
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the the second issue is me as investor, ibk, or aca, i have a feud uribery obligation as a buyer to do my homework. that's my responsibility. but in the united states, we have the securities and exchange commission act. we have laws that make securities very different than used cars or anything else. >> and that's a security. >> this is a security. >> which is a group of obligations to a company, it could be debt, it could be anything. can i interrupt you very quickly. the vote came out of the senate, they will not proceed to debate. 57-41. no vote. they need 60 to go to debate. two days in a row, the republicans remaining solidarity this their 41-vote bloc. no debate, continue. >> back to goldman sachs, where things get a little different when you're selling the security is, you are not allowed to make, and the law is simply a material misrepresentation. you can't say, paulson is long, $200 million worth of this.
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when in fact he is short $200. >> is that what they're accused of doing? >> it's on page two of the complaint. it's very clear, that the fabulous fab, claimed that paulson, who is a very well known hedge fund manager now. back then only a handful of people knew who he was. he's a big hedge fund, he's smart money. the people involved have an idea who he is. it doesn't matter if he's a mystery man or not. you cannot lie when you're selling this. we can argue about what you can leave out, what you have to disclose, that's a different argument. you can't say up when it's down. you can't say black when it's white. >> and the lying, if it happened, would be when fabrice tourre, said the hedge fund manager helped pick the securities, designed up -- that's the easy part of it. >> let's move down the list and touch the news, before we get off to goldman again. how do you interpret the second-day senate vote? >> you're going to see this go on for for a couple of days. in the old days filibusters

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