Recently the Obama administration and our nation’s politicians signed into office a piece of legislation known as the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. This act was installed as a response to the catastrophic financial crisis of 2008. While the act is well intentioned seemingly addresses the core failures of the crisis, it is overbearing and far too complex. Specifically, the Dodd-Frank act, with its numerous policies and regulations, will seek to fundamentally undermine small and community banks that have had nothing to do with the financial crisis. Congress must take action to ensure that this does not take place and our community banks, and furthermore local economies, thrive. In its current state, Dodd-Frank does not sufficiently and accurately address the large and complex financial institutions that led to the largest economic downfall since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Moreover, its drastic regulations will seek to exponentially raise operating costs and decrease revenues through increased compliance. Plagued with the new compliance requires much cost that is tough for these small banks to absorb as they do not have access to capital like the larger banks do.
Congress must seek to stop the implementation of the Durbin amemdment which is a new piece of regulation that will decrease the amount of interchange fees charged by banks, thereby drastically decreasing interchange revenue (a significant portion of small bank revenue). Congress must put a stop to this amendment being implemented. Additionally, the large amount of regulation flooding into the banking industry will seek to greatly hurt our nation’s financial institutions. More compliance translates into more cost for banks. Small community banks do not have the access to capital that large banks do and therefore struggle with hiring compliance staff to comply with the influx of new rules and regulations. The effect is a chain reaction. As more regulation floods into the industry, banks must comply which translates into cost. This cost is furthermore transferred over to the consumer as fees must be raised in order for banks to continue to be profitable. As banks spend more capital on compliance, less capital is available to lend and offer financial services to their local customers. As a result, small businesses and communities suffer from stagnant economic growth. Our nation’s small community banks are vital to local economic growth and furthermore the growth of our economy as a whole. Congress MUST take action before its too late.
I have noticed that our generation has been deemed “spoiled” by more and more older generations and this is very alarming. If I can pinpoint one value that has led me to the success I have had in life thus far it is that of independence. I believe that all of us can truly benefit from taking greater strides of independence and better applying a “do it yourself” attitude.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that we should completely break free of our parents as this would not be beneficial. However, I am saying that we, our generation in particular, would absolutely benefit from fending for ourselves. I am a firm believer that this type of attitude leads to overall success in life as well as teaching life lessons. I have made it a habit since the closing years of high school to not relay on my parents for simple amenities such as cash but also scheduling housing, contacting administration, acquiring jobs/internships, etc.
Overall, I would like our generation to have a serious makeover in terms of trying to break free from our parentals or authority figure and take the initiative to do things on our own. This sort of attitude will work to benefit our generation and generations to come as a work hard attitude of the 1950’s can be reinstated and erase the notions of a spoiled generation.
Within the past month, the National Football League has completed and launched new investigations regarding the New Orleans Saints “BountyGate”. This comes in light of allegations that former Saints defensive coordinator, Gregg Williams, instituted a slush fund that paid out bonuses for players that brought intentional harm to an opposing player. The investigation has received heavy coverage from the media and has sparked controversy given the penalties that were imposed on the Saints; namely, the suspension of Sean Payton and loss of a second round pick in the 2012 and 2013 drafts. Underlying the scandal is the NFL’s recent initiation of more stringent rules geared at protecting the players. The following case examines the actions of Gregg Williams and applies general morality and the ethical reasoning of Immanuel Kant to arrive at a clear course of action or solution. Continue reading
For my first argument paper I decided to take on a topic that directly correlates with my future. A common topic in class discussion and nation wide is the recent government intervention in the financial sector regarding the “too big to fail” companies. I wanted to look further into the role of the SEC and policies such as the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Using Google Scholar, I was able to gather some more opinions surrounding these issues.
In searching about the Dodd-Frank Act, as it is abbreviated, I came across a piece that is very strongly against this act of government. The abstract, written by Arthur E. Wilmarth Jr at George Washington University Law School, recognizes some improvements from Dodd-Frank but says the root of the act has not brought an end to the “too big to fail” era. Specifically, the author insists that the act does not regulate mergers and acquisitions enough and this is the reason for companies becoming too big to fail.
Backtracking using the cited references, I came across a piece written by a Professor of Law at the University of Minnesota, Brett H. McDonnell. In his piece, McDonnell explores the politics of the recent financial crisis and specifically with too big to fail institutions. Brett’s article delves into the politics of large financial institutions that have immense lobbying power and even goes onto speak about the prestige that comes with running an institution and those benefits (being hired as government regulators). In short the article divides the issue of TBTF into two sides; economics and politics. This is exactly the kind of information I am looking for to use in my paper.
If I can continue to find other sources regarding both the economics and politics of this amounting issue, I will hopefully be able to arrive at some sort of conclusion or clear approach to government in the role of financial institutions. This will be critical to the future success of our economy.
This spring break I did not follow the masses to any of the coastlines or islands. Instead, I was able to join the European masses in my first trip to Europe. Specifically, I visited Italy and Spain where I ventured through the cobblestones of Florence, scaled the Colosseum in Rome, and struggled to adapt to Spanish eating habits in Barcelona. Rome was remarkable with all of the ruins surrounding my hotel and in my opinion should be the first stop for anybody visiting; even if you’re not particularly religious, the Vatican is a must-see. Overall, I had a blast on my trip but it had a much deeper meaning than sight seeing. I realized while I was there how sheltered my upbringing has been thus far and how beneficial it would be for me to travel to other regions of our world.
We are very lucky to be American and to be associated with the “freedom” that serves as a footnote for America. Given the United States’ dominant global presence, I wanted to dive a little deeper into a European country that isn’t a top player. I followed my Irish heritage and financial interests to the breathtaking country of Ireland. While Ireland engraves gorgeous plateaus of greener than green grass, there is much more than meets the eye. Continue reading
An up and coming show that has recently caught my attention is the show Swamp People. If you are not familiar, it is a feature on the History Channel in which residents of Louisiana participate in “gator season”. The show follows several teams as they line the swamps with baited traps in hopes of coming back to find a hooked gator. The show is of great interest of me because of stark difference between how my life is versus theirs. For instance, I am fortunate enough to be typing on this laptop right now, and for that matter even connecting to the Internet. The swamp people, lead simple and in some cases extreme lifestyles that are tremendously appealing to me, for whatever reason.
For this week’s post, I wanted to track my education, starting with elementary, and see how this has enabled or disabled me to succeed relative to my status as a White man. As you may or may not know, I am a Texan and damn proud of it. I’m from good ole San Antone where the heat and taco stands are as prevalent as the rain and squirrels are here in Lewisburg. I grew up in what has become the “Bubble” of San Antonio in Alamo Heights. As the name alludes, the area is predominantly home to middle-class Whites who send their children to the notorious, Alamo Heights School District (AHSD).
I attended AHSD in elementary school and up until middle school where I switched to private school in 6th grade. I created many lasting friendships while at AHSD, and in fact I still keep in touch and hang out with many of the kids I grew up with. This transition from public to private school is what I credit for “making me the man I am today”. Continue reading
From an early age, I have always been interested in the larger fortune 500 companies, as my grandfather was the CEO for a rather well-known company, JLG Industries, Inc. My grandfather has always been a source of inspiration for me as he has and will continue to harp on hard work and academic excellence. I could always count on him no matter what the issue; he always had my best interest at heart. When I would visit the JLG headquarters as a “youngin”, I never fully understood the responsibilities that he took on as the chief executive. As we have been digging deeper into Enron, AIG, and Nike, it has become much clearer to me what kind of role he took on and how important good business ethics are.
Various Products Offered by JLG:
“Our commitment to high ethical standards, legal compliance, and integrity is reflected in our safety and environmental policies and practices worldwide”……”We believe that it is possible to obtain the energy the world needs while also protecting people and the environment”. These are two quotes pulled directly from Exxon Mobil’s website under “Safety & environment“. From the looks of it, Exxon seems to be carrying out its business operations in a sound and ethical way. Let’s take a closer look. Continue reading
As a Management major and in search of a finance internship, I have recently been doing my best to keep up with the markets, world news, the economy (or lack there of), etc… It seems that ever other headline I read in the Wall Street Journal contains more doubts about where our economy is headed and furthermore where the European Union is headed; specifically Greece and Portugal. However, Dean Baker, normally a pessimistic economist can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Dean Baker guest blogged on the financial blog, Planet Money. Interestingly, Baker was one of the few that predicted the housing bubble burst we have been discussing. Moreover, Baker is taking a different route than most others who also predicted the burst; he believes our economy is not as bad off as the WSJ and others make it seem. In his blog he torts that the whole EU crisis is simply to attract attention Continue reading
From an early age, I can remember my English courses preaching on the importance of sticking to MLA format, having a few drafts before turing in a final one, and spending countless hours preparing such a report. But now I keep hearing this blogging word floating around. Do you mean to tell me I can speak my mind without having to follow a set of guidelines? Interesting.
Blogging has become one of the most dominant forces on the Internet since its inception in the late 1990’s. The sky is the limit for self-proclaimed bloggers and blogging as a whole, as this whole new aspect to idea sharing and social-media is still very early in development.
When first hearing about blogging, it never really interested me as I figured it was more geared toward those Geek Squad guys over at Best Buy. Little did I know, blogging is one of the most used tools by intellectuals and students of my age. Now that I am a member of this class, I have to admit, this is my first time as a “blogger”. Now that you know about the relationship between myself and blogging, let’s take a closer look into the role that blogging plays in education.
As I pointed to earlier, blogging is an excellent writing tool that can be utilized essentially at any location with WIFI and a compatible device. This is obviously a major advantage over standard writing methods that require MLA format, as is commonplace. Moreover, blogging creates a port for writers to express their thoughts on a much more frequent and informal basis. In a way, it makes writing not so much a task but rather an engaging experience that taps into a wide variety of audiences rather than just a professor. Finally, blogging can be an excellent tool for tweaking and strengthening one’s writing abilities. Students required to blog every week in addition to formal writing requirements are bound to be ahead of those students who just engage in formal writing requirements.
On the other hand, blogging can inspire one to abandon all those years of English courses and MLA format. It could also be seen as a source of unwanted rebellion and anarchy. Another downside of blogging is the fact that bloggers can potentially defame anyone or anything. Furthermore, because of the massive size of blogging it would seemingly go unnoticed. To be concise, blogging can spread the wrong kind of message about expressing one’s self. But then again that can also be an upside to blogging. All in all, I believe that blogging is a positive writing utensil when utilized correctly and in the right context. Some people are greatly opposed to it. But how could they be when we pride ourselves on being American and “free”.