The “Chicago Way” And The Shady ShoreBank Bailout
bailouts, no more greed, how many profits do you need?"
That`s been a signature chant of community organizers
and Big Labor thugs
who have stormed bank offices and financial executives`
private homes decrying corporate welfare over the
past several months.
But now that the federal government
and a coalition of big banking interests are poised to
bail out a crony Chicago bank with longtime ties to the
Obama administration, Saul Alinsky`s
avenging angels are nowhere to be found.
ShoreBank is a
City investment bank with all the right (or, rather,
left) ties. Its stated progressive mission isn`t merely
to make good lending decisions, but to engage in Barack
Obama-esque social engineering to
equity and a healthy environment." The ShoreBank
change the world."
The company website features a
of Obama in Kenya championing ShoreBank microlending
projects overseas. ShoreBank has also touted itself as a
from its founding days—promoting dubious carbon credit
programs, subjecting new borrowers to eco-litmus tests ("we look at how you use water, how you recover water and clean it, how
you use energy, if you produce clean energy, how you
manage CO2, whether you are offsetting CO2 that your
product produces, if you are using sustainably produced
materials") and encouraging customers to participate
support the green agenda."
Social and environmental justice
may make for good Volvo bumper stickers. They do not,
however, make for a good bottom line. While the bank was
on do-gooder missions around the world, business at home
was in trouble. As
The Wall Street Journal
"Losses racked up during the recession have left the
bank facing a demand to raise new capital or face likely
closure by regulators."
ShoreBank co-founder Jan
Piercy was a Wellesley College roommate of Hillary
Clinton`s, who has long supported the bank along with
Former ShoreBank Vice
Chairman Bob Nash worked for Mrs. Clinton`s presidential
bid as deputy campaign manager. Board of Directors
member Howard Stanback is a Hyde Park neighborhood pal
of President Obama, who served with Stanback on the
board of the radical Woods Fund (where Weather
Underground terrorist Bill Ayers also sat).
White House senior
Valerie Jarrett served on the board of Chicago
Metropolis 2020 with ShoreBank Director Adele Simmons,
former president of the
liberal MacArthur Foundation, where she focused on
The bank and its employees
donated some $12,000 to the Obama 2008 presidential
campaign, and co-founder Mary Houghton reportedly
gave advice to
Obama`s late mother about small business lending
In other words: ShoreBank is too
politically connected to fail. And now you, the
taxpayer, may be on the hook for helping its cronies
engineer a special rescue. Fox Business News reported
this week that a consortium of large lenders—including
Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and GE Capital—have partnered
with the feds to pitch in a combined $200 million
public-private bailout. (In addition, Illinois Democrat
Rep. Jan Schakowsky has been crusading for a state-level
bailout of the beleaguered bank.) The buzz on both Wall
Street and Capitol Hill is that Goldman and perhaps
others in the public-private partnership were pressured
to lend a hand.
It wouldn`t be the first time that
businesses have felt the Obama squeeze. And it wouldn`t
be the first time that Democrats exploited the financial
crisis to milk public money for their banking cronies.
The laggardly House Ethics
Committee is still investigating Democrat California
Rep. Maxine Waters, who had a
personal and financial stake in Boston-based OneUnited,
a minority bank that received $12 million in TARP
bailout money under smelly circumstances. The bank`s
executives donated $12,500 to her congressional
campaigns. Her husband, Sidney Williams, was an investor
in one of the banks that merged into OneUnited. Waters
secured meetings between OneUnited execs and Treasury
That probe has dragged on for
nearly a year, which doesn`t bode well for fresh GOP
demands for an investigation into the shady ShoreBank
bailout. House Financial Services Committee ranking
minority member Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., has demanded
that the White House cough up documentation about any
possible overt contact with Goldman about the deal.
Team Obama is smarter than that, of
course. To quote Obama`s environmental czar Carol
Browner, who pressured auto industry execs last year to
cooperate on a fuel standards increase, they know
"to put nothing
in writing, ever."
CREATORS SYNDICATE, INC.
is the author of
Invasion: How America Still Welcomes Terrorists,
Criminals, and Other Foreign Menaces to Our
for Peter Brimelow`s review. Click
for Michelle Malkin`s website. Michelle Malkin
is also author of
Unhinged: Exposing Liberals Gone Wild
and the just-released Culture of Corruption: Obama and his Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks & Cronies.