December 7, 2011

Lucid Links (120711)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 8:47 am

Note: Please keep comments at this post related to the items presented.


Maggie Thurber is calling attention to a brazen violation of the law by a civil servant:

Sobecki can’t run for county recorder and keep her county job

Lisa Sobecki is currently an employee at the Lucas County Department of Job and Family Services. Her title is Casework Aide and it is in the bargaining unit. It is also in the classified civil service.

Her employment is not an issue, unless she decides to run for partisan political office – which she apparently has decided to do.

… Ohio law prohibits employees in the classified civil service from participation in partisan political activity.

… (This) means that, as a county employee, she cannot seek office in a partisan election and keep her job.

… The law is clear and so is the task before the County Commissioners. They should immediately bring charges against Sobecki for violation of ORC 124.57 and she should be terminated if she chooses to continue to seek partisan political office.

Apparently the commissioners in the one-party state of Lucas County don’t intend to do anything to stop her.

Three thoughts:

  1. Since state law is involved, it would seem that Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine would have every right to intervene if the commissioners and/or the country prosecutor fail to uphold the oaths they swore when they took office and don’t act.
  2. If Sobecki wins (this could be done after a primary or general election), it would seem that legal action filed by either a losing candidate or a disgruntled voter could overturn her victory as directly violating state law. I don’t see why a prosecutor or DeWine couldn’t file criminal charges about three seconds after she wins.
  3. Based on his coverage at this story, Tom Troy at the Toledo Blade, which says that it wants “to be the premier source of news and information about northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan,” is either too ignorant to know or doesn’t care about Sobecki’s clearly illegal candidacy. Which is it, Tom?


At the New York Post, via Michael Walsh (“Fast & furious lies — Justice Dept. must come clean”):

It was all a lie. The angry denials, the high dudgeon, the how-dare-you accuse-us bleating emanating from Eric Holder’s Justice Department these last nine months.

Operation Fast and Furious — the “botched” gun-tracking program run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — did, in fact, deliberately allow some 2,000 high-powered weapons to be sold to Mexican drug cartel agents and then waltzed across the border and into the Mexican drug wars — just as Sen. Chuck Grassley and Rep. Darrell Issa, who are leading the congressional investigations, have charged all along.

If this were a Republican, the press and the left would have been talking about impeachment and/or indictment months ago. For Eric Holder, the operation and the blatantly lying cover-up should at least lead to his resignation.


Bill Sloat in effect notes that my term for the political situation in Hamilton County coined several years ago (“The Politicians’ Republic of Hamilton County”) — because the two major parties agreed not to compete with each other in county commissioner elections (seriously) — is now only half-true.


From the UK (“‘Climategate’ email scandal shatters public confidence in paying to go green”) — “UK consumers are reacting to the financial crisis and a wave of “climategate” email scandals by keeping their wallets in their pockets when given the choice of going green.” This explains why we’ve seen pathetic to non-existent coverage of both rounds of the Climategate scandal in the U.S. establishment press.


Turning the tables at Heritage — Mike Brownfield doesn’t directly make the claim I’m about to articulate, but what he lays out essentially does:

In the United States, smart-growth policies started in California and Oregon but then spread around the country to “deter suburban growth for all but the well-to-do,” as (Heritage researchers Wendell) Cox, (Ronald) Utt, and (Brett) Schaefer explain. They also write that those policies were not without detrimental impact:

As they became more prevalent and restrictive, their impact on housing prices and construction likewise expanded. An explosion of exclusionary zoning throughout the U.S. encouraged many communities to adopt zoning policies to ensure that they maintained a certain demographic ‘profile.’ Such zoning limited real estate development to higher-cost homes in order to ‘price out’ moderate-income households, which included a disproportionate share of minorities.

Where do these home-grown smart-growth policies stand today? The Obama Administration has embraced them while also increasing environmental regulations and restrictions on the use of natural resources. But the White House isn’t the only one behind the smart-growth movement. Local and state officials, along with interest groups, are promoting the policies at all levels of government.

Thus, using their own terms, what lefties like to call “smart growth” is fundamentally racist, exclusionary and elitist.



  1. Obama, the anti-technology president. Not only did the dufus repeat the ATM taking the bank teller myth, he adds the internet and the computer as well. I guess class warfare against the machine is a safe bet as they don’t vote.

    Comment by dscott — December 7, 2011 @ 5:32 pm

  2. Well, I think it’s time for a conservative call for Financial Reform of Wall Street against unreasonably risky brokerage practices, especially when they are not being disclosed to account holders and not required to disclose those practices on the books:

    Why The UK Trail Of The MF Global Collapse May Have “Apocalyptic” Consequences For The Eurozone, Canadian Banks, Jefferies And Everyone Else

    I am calling for an end to the practice of unlimited “hypothecation and re-hypothecation.” All US companies with foreign ties, especially in England must NOT allow US assets to be leveraged outside of the country IF US laws are being sidestepped.

    Under the U.S. Federal Reserve Board’s Regulation T and SEC Rule 15c3-3, a prime broker may re-hypothecate assets to the value of 140% of the client’s liability to the prime broker. For example, assume a customer has deposited $500 in securities and has a debt deficit of $200, resulting in net equity of $300. The broker-dealer can re-hypothecate up to $280 (140 per cent. x $200) of these assets.

    But in the UK, there is absolutely no statutory limit on the amount that can be re-hypothecated. In fact, brokers are free to re-hypothecate all and even more than the assets deposited by clients. Instead it is up to clients to negotiate a limit or prohibition on re-hypothecation. On the above example a UK broker could, and frequently would, re-hypothecate 100% of the pledged securities ($500).

    This asymmetry of rules makes exploiting the more lax UK regime incredibly attractive to international brokerage firms such as MF Global or Lehman Brothers which can use European subsidiaries to create pools of funding for their U.S. operations, without the bother of complying with U.S. restrictions.

    In fact, by 2007, re-hypothecation had grown so large that it accounted for half of the activity of the shadow banking system. Prior to Lehman Brothers collapse, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) calculated that U.S. banks were receiving $4 trillion worth of funding by re-hypothecation, much of which was sourced from the UK. With assets being re-hypothecated many times over (known as “churn”), the original collateral being used may have been as little as $1 trillion – a quarter of the financial footprint created through re-hypothecation.

    Now we understand where the $1.2 billion dissappeared to when MF Global went belly up, the firm had to cover the contract loses through it’s UK subsidiary and they used client accounts which they pledged as collateral to do it. So why is it that clients have to lose their money when MF Global made tons of profits in previous years using their clients money? It’s the same old socialist crap under the guise of capitalism, privatize the profits and socialize the loses. I say we need to do a reach back of MF Global’s previous year’s profits from their investors (Corzine and cronies) to make the account holders whole.

    So now the problem for all investors has become that even the ratings agencies like S&P cannot reasonably rate the risks of any brokerage company because of the lack of transparency in hypothecation. Thus we now also know why AIG really went belly up.

    Comment by dscott — December 8, 2011 @ 1:31 am

  3. In a related note, European banks are borrowing huge sums of Dollars at a discount. Now pay close attention to this statement:

    Demand for Dollars from Fed’s Discount Window Swells in Europe by 12,735% After Fed Cut Rates on Dollar Swap Lines

    The European Central Bank, based in Frankfurt, will lend $50.7 billion to 34 euro area banks on Thursday for 84 days at a fixed rate of 0.59 percent. That compares with the $395 million lent in the last three-month offering on Nov. 9 at a rate of 1.09 percent. The E.C.B. also lent five banks $1.6 billion in its regular weekly dollar operation, up from $352 million last week. The E.C.B. does not disclose the identity of the banks that borrow.

    Six central banks including the Fed, the European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan cut the cost of emergency dollar loans by 50 basis points on Nov. 30 in an effort to ease a credit shortage worsened by Europe’s sovereign debt crisis. A basis point is equal to 0.01 percent. On Tuesday, demand for seven-day dollar loans from the Bank of Japan surged to $25 million from $1 million.

    Isn’t the real conclusion here that excessive borrowing by the sovereigns for consumption based spending is crowding out productive wealth producing investments. The economy is in the tank because no money is going where it needs to go to produce wealth and therefore jobs.

    Comment by dscott — December 8, 2011 @ 4:11 am

  4. In light of Zero Hedges discussion of MF Global and it’s over leveraging:

    UBS advice for a euro collapse: ‘tinned goods, small calibre weapons’

    When the people at UBS are publicly making such comments, maybe it is a good time to start stockpiling food. My list is complete, now I’m considering the timing of the needed purchases.

    Comment by dscott — December 8, 2011 @ 4:24 am

  5. [...] share of the dirty work on this one, has news about something I noted in the first item at yesterday’s Lucid Link’s post: I’ve previously written about Toledo School Board member and current county employee Lisa [...]

    Pingback by BizzyBlog — December 8, 2011 @ 8:32 am

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