Mr. Frank’s Monkey Business

It seems that the Honorable Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) may not be so honorable.

Frank has been one of the most vocal bulldogs on Capitol Hill pushing for tougher regulation and oversight of financial institutions, on which he places much of the blame for the existing financial crisis and deepening recession. He has called for greater transparency and accountability from banks, lenders and investment firms. What’s more, he has openly attacked corporate executives at hearings on Capitol Hill — seemingly with great delight. Go Barney.

But alas, Mr. Frank appears not to be above the fray, either. In fact, it seems he used his influence to bend — if not break — the rules governing the use of the TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program) funds.

Although the funds were only to be used to stabilize healthy banks, OneUnited Bank in Boston received a $12 million infusion of funds — even though it had little of its own capital and (according The Wall Street Journal) “was under attack from regulators for allegations of poor lending practices and executive pay abuses.”

Well done, Mr. Frank — you have shown the American public once again that you and other members of Congress will fight for what is right — as long as it does not affect your voter base.

It is no wonder that the American public’s confidence continues to wane. We cannot trust the banks with our money, nor can trust the leadership in Washington to be, well, leaders. If President Obama is to effect all of the change he has suggested on his historic road to the White House, he is going to have to pave new trails in the halls of Congress. And in the course of doing so, it seems equitable to have Mr. Frank be on the receiving end of his passive-aggressive antics.


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