Condo Rice – You Thought Dealing With Al Qaeda was Tough?

Wait until you get between the SEC and Big 10 Fans!

This one seems to be headed into cluster-doodle world. And it’s already started…

ESPN’s David Pollack: Women don’t belong on playoff selection committee

To say this one will be challenging, is an understatement.

Condoleezza Rice, Archie Manning on playoff committee

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and football Hall of Famer Archie Manning are two of nine people expected to be part of the selection committee for the College Football Playoff that begins in 2014, a person familiar with the decision told USA TODAY Sports.

The person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the committee has not been announced, also confirmed the following members: Wisconsin athletics director Barry Alvarez, USC athletics director Pat Haden, Arkansas athletics director Jeff Long, West Virginia athletics director Oliver Luck and Clemson athletics director Dan Radakovich in addition to Rice, former Ole Miss and NFL quarterback Manning, former NCAA Executive Vice President Tom Jernstedt and former Big East Commissioner Mike Tranghese as at-large selections.

The person said there will only be one sitting athletics director from each of the five power conferences, so those places are set.

“It’s an all-star cast,” the person said.

A second person familiar with the makeup of the committee who spoke on the condition of anonymity because it has not been announced said the committee also will include Lt. Col. Michael Gould, former Superintendent of the Air Force Academy and a former player for the school.

The first person said Rice’s diverse background made her appealing.

A native of Birmingham, Ala., Rice holds degrees from the University of Denver and Notre Dame, and is a professor of political science at Stanford. She served as National Security Advisor from 2001-05 and Secretary of State from 2005-09. She also was Stanford’s Provost from 1993-99. She has been on faculty at Stanford since 1981.

The makeup of the 12- to 18-person College Football Playoff selection committee is expected to be set by the end of this season, and possibly by the next meeting of its managing directors in November in Washington, D.C. Potential committee members have been asked to keep their involvement confidential until the announcement is made, but College Football Playoff Executive Director Bill Hancock and Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany said the names wouldn’t be a surprise to many.

“You’ll know almost all of them,” Hancock said recently.

Although Hancock and several commissioners have taken to referring to the selection committee as “the most prestigious committee in sports,” its business – and its members – will also be the subject of intense scrutiny.

“If they’re gonna be scrutinized the way they’re gonna be scrutinized, we’ve got to be ultimately careful and do every bit of due diligence,” Delany said recently. “You can expect that media – new media, old media – when someone says, ‘Oh, that guy voted that way for that reason,’ they’re gonna be under a fine-tooth comb. We’ve got to make sure, for everybody’s sake, that we’ve done everything we need to do to understand that.”

More Dirty Money – Did Madoff Pay Off SEC Lawyers?

Former SEC General Counsel David M. Becker, Accused of profiting from Madoff Scheme to Look the Other Way

Yet another story of dirty money making it’s way into the hands of the folks who are supposed to protect our system. Not sure how you prosecute these guys when you have bought judges on the Supreme Court who also are taking bribes. Seems to me that level of corruption brings down the whole system.

Irving Picard hits Securities and Exchange Commission’s top lawyer with Bernie Madoff lawsuit

The family of the top lawyer at the Securities and Exchange Commission invested with Bernie Madoff and earned more than $1.5 million in ill-gained profits, according to trustee Irving Picard, who has named the lawyer, David M. Becker, as a defendant in a clawback lawsuit, a Daily News investigation has found.

The apparent conflict of interest raises significant questions about the watchdog commission’s failure to stop Madoff and his $65 billion Ponzi scheme, despite repeated red flags and investigations into his operations.

Becker, 63, who is leaving his post as general counsel and senior policy director of the SEC in five days to return to the private sector, has never publicly disclosed his family’s ties to Madoff. He and his two brothers, who are also defendants in the suit, were named executors of their mother’s estate, which included a Madoff account, after her death in 2004. They liquidated the account in 2005, withdrawing $2,042,845, and are being sued as co-executors of the estate and individually.

David Becker was the SEC’s general counsel from 2000-2002 and again from 2009 until this month. He joined the agency in 1998 as deputy general counsel.

A spokesman for the SEC, John Nester, confirmed Tuesday that Becker received the complaint several days ago.

“He had no involvement with his parents’ financial affairs, and no recollection of his parents’ account with Madoff prior to his mother’s death and subsequent liquidation of the account,” Nester said on behalf of Becker.

 

 

 

SEC Staffers Watched Porn As The Economy Tanked, and Wall Street Pirates Stole Billions

The newest attack on the SEC by Republicans is that SEC Officials are too busy watching Porn to be entrusted with watching Wall Street. According to Republican Rep. Darrell Issa -

“This stunning report should make everyone question the wisdom of moving forward with plans to give regulators like the SEC even more widespread authority,” he said. “Inexplicably, rather than exercise its existing regulatory enforcement authority, SEC officials were preoccupied with other distractions.”

Of course this ignores the fact that what the SEC Staffers who were guilty of this were doing is against Federal Regulations (and caught by Government filters and reported to the Inspector General), and normally such behavior as misuse of a Government Computer is grounds for administrative punishment or termination. Which leaves us to the point of – who was in charge, and what did they do about it?

Some SEC Employees Watching The Wrong Things

And the second question being – since Congress and their staff is exempt from this regulation…

What would a survey of Congress’ computers turn up?

SEC staffers watched porn as economy crashed

As the country was sinking into its worst financial crisis in more than 70 years, Security and Exchange Commission employees and contractors cruised porn sites and viewed sexually explicit pictures using government computers, according to an agency report obtained by CNN.

“During the past five years, the SEC OIG (Office of Inspector General) substantiated that 33 SEC employees and or contractors violated Commission rules and policies, as well as the government-wide Standards of Ethical Conduct, by viewing pornographic, sexually explicit or sexually suggestive images using government computer resources and official time,” said a summary of the investigation by the inspector general’s office.

More than half of the workers made between $99,000 and $223,000. All the cases took place over the past five years.

This also begs an interesting question. Since many of the people making that level of salary would be Presidential Appointees – that means that most of the people at that level would have been Republican appointees. Continue reading

The SEC (Finally) Begins Doing It’s Job!

This is the first, of what should be a series of actions by the SEC to go after the Wall Street Companies who engineered the economic meltdown. One would hope that some of these prosecutions include criminal as well as civil actions.

Three cheers for the SEC!

The SEC showed some major teeth Friday. It’s about time. And hopefully this won’t be the last time the agency bares its fangs.

The Securities and Exchange Commission is going after the biggest of the big on Wall Street. Goldman Sachs.

The SEC alleged that Goldman Sachs (GS, Fortune 500) failed to disclose to investors in a pool of subprime mortgages that Paulson & Co., one of the most influential hedge funds in the world, was making bets against the security.

If the SEC’s claim is true, this is a major transgression. Even if it turns out that the wrongdoing was the work of one rogue employee — the SEC specifically named Goldman Vice President Fabrice Tourre — it is clear that Goldman has some explaining to do and must pay. Continue reading

Getting Tougher on the Bank Fraudsters

Ex-BofA chief Lewis charged with fraud

Former BofA CEO Ken Lewis

New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo unveiled a major legal action against senior Bank of America executives Thursday over its controversial purchase of Merrill Lynch, including bringing civil charges against its former CEO Ken Lewis.

Cuomo’s office, which has been aggressively pursuing an investigation into the merger and subsequent bonuses paid to former Merrill employees, said it was charging Lewis and Bank of America’s chief financial officer Joe Price, who was recently appointed to lead the firm’s consumer banking business.

The lawsuit contends that the bank’s management team understated the losses at Merrill in order to get shareholders to approve the deal, then subsequently overstated the firm’s willingness to terminate the merger in order to get $20 billion of additional aid from the federal government.

“Bank of America, through its top management, engaged in a concerted effort to deceive shareholders and American taxpayers at large,” Cuomo said in a statement.

“This was an arrogant scheme hatched by the bank’s top executives who believed they could play by their own set of rules.”

A spokesperson for Bank of America called the charges “regrettable” and “totally without merit.”

Separately, the Securities and Exchange Commission said Thursday it had struck an agreement with Bank of America over the company’s decision to pay $3.6 billion of bonuses to former Merrill employees for fiscal year 2008.

Under the terms of the proposed settlement, the Charlotte, N.C.-based lender will pay a $150 million penalty to its shareholders who were affected by the disclosure violations.

The company also agreed to implement a number of corporate governance changes for the next three years including giving its shareholders an advisory vote, or “say on pay” of its executives.

The settlement will be subject to the approval of U.S. District Court Judge Jed Rakoff, however.

Rakoff scuttled a previous agreement between the two parties last fall, arguing that the original $33 million settlement was not only paltry, but would only impact those who were hurt by the bonus scandal: the company’s shareholders.

Another candidate for the Bernie Madoff wing at Club Fed.

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