Archive for November 15th, 2013

by lizard

It just doesn’t get any more blatant than this: Fed Insider Exposes Giant Central Bank “Easing” Swindle:

A former Federal Reserve official who helped the Central Bank manage its bond buying program, dubbed QE, has admitted that the program is a fraud. In a shocking op-ed in Monday’s Wall Street Journal, Andrew Huszar apologized for his role in the Fed’s $1.25 trillion asset purchase program which he described as “the greatest backdoor Wall Street bailout of all time.”

So far, no one at the Fed has responded to the charges, nor has Congress or the Department of Justice (DOJ) taken steps to investigate allegations that the multi-trillion dollar program was not intended to help Main Street as announced, but to shore up flagging bank balance sheets and zombie financial institutions that would have defaulted without the Fed’s stealth welfare program.

Surprisingly, Huszar’s credibility has not yet been challenged nor his claim that he played a pivotal role in overseeing the program. As he notes in his confession, he was “managing what was at the heart of QE’s bond-buying spree—a wild attempt to buy $1.25 trillion in mortgage bonds in 12 months.” He was asked “to quarterback” the largest giveaway to Big Finance on record. The fact that his allegations have not prompted an thorough investigation of criminal malfeasance at the Fed boggles the mind and points to a justice system that makes no pretense of operating in the interests of the people it is supposed to serve.

I mean, fuck.

But hey, a make-a-wish kid gets to be Batman for a day in San Francisco! And Barack Obama even congratulated him with a Vine vid.

While the president tries to siphon some good publicity from a sick child, his justice department just scored another win against the dangerous threat of hacktivism by sentencing Jeremy Hammond to 10 years in prison:

Jeremy Hammond, the Anonymous hacktivist who released millions of emails relating to the private intelligence firm Stratfor, has denounced his prosecution and lengthy prison sentence as a “vengeful, spiteful act” designed to put a chill on politically-motivated hacking.

Hammond was sentenced on Friday at federal court in Manhattan to the maximum 10 years in jail, plus three years supervised release. He had pleaded guilty to one count under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) flowing from his 2011 hack of Strategic Forecasting, Inc, known as Stratfor. In an interview with the Guardian in the Metropolitan Correction Center in New York, conducted on Thursday, he said he was resigned to a long prison term which he sees as a conscious attempt by the US authorities to put a chill on political hacking.

In another article about Hammond’s case, Kevin Gosztola describes the tactic increasingly used by prosecutors:

What happened today is indicative of how justice increasingly seems to work. One is over-charged and made to experience a level of pretrial punishment before being convicted of any crimes so that prosecutors can ensure the case is won. They intimidate those with limited resources and individuals who believe they did not convict any crime by threatening them with a future where they might be hauled into court to defend themselves again and again.

Similarly, this is what happened in the prosecutions of NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake and CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou. Both have families. Both have children. Both had their lives destroyed by the government. Both ultimately chose to plead guilty—Drake to a misdemeanor violation of improperly accessing a computer and Kiriakou to a violation of the Intelligence Identities and Protection Act. Drake had to complete so many hours of community hours while Kiriakou was sentenced to jail for thirty months.

It is all intended to force the kind of plea that Hammond entered today because the Justice Department does not want hacktivists like Jeremy Hammond or whistleblowers to actually go to trial. They want these people to submit to prosecutors and enter a plea so the Justice Department can have a guaranteed win and not have to bother with arguing the government’s case in a court of law.

This is very important to understand, because it’s become a very common tactic. I actually had a friend subjected to this exact process with a Partner/Family Assault charge here in Missoula. It’s the same tactic that resulted in Aaron Swartz committing suicide.

Luckily for the criminals on Wall Street, these kind of aggressive prosecution tactics will never be deployed on them.

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