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Secret Financial "Working Group" Meets With Bush This Morning

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Better Believe It Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-16-08 01:15 PM
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Secret Financial "Working Group" Meets With Bush This Morning

Bush To Be Briefed By Financial Markets Working Group Tuesday
Dow Jones
September 15, 2008

WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- U.S. President George W. Bush on Tuesday will be briefed on financial-market conditions by his Working Group on Financial Markets, White House spokesman Tony Fratto said Monday.

The briefing will occur after Bush returns from a trip to Houston and Galveston, Texas, where he will inspect areas damaged by Hurricane Ike.

The working group is led by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, and includes the chairs of the Federal Reserve Board, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

Bush and Paulson met earlier Monday, as the collapse of Lehman Brothers (LEH) and the woes of American International Group (AIG) sent shudders through markets. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down more than 500 points, a massive sell-off propelled by investor fears over the health of the financial system.

Though the working group meets regularly, Bush hasn't sat down with it since March 17, a day after the Fed provided a backstop for J.P. Morgan Chase's (JPM) purchase of Bear Stearns.


Who Will Protect Us From Plunge Protection?
Congress and the Press Must Probe This Secret 'Working Group'
by Danny Schechter

Executive Order 12631--Working Group on Financial Markets

Section 1. Establishment. (a) There is hereby established a Working Group on Financial Markets (Working Group). The Working Group shall be composed of:

(1) the Secretary of the Treasury, or his designee;

(2) the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, or his designee;

(3) the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, or his designee; and

(4) the Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, or her designee.

(b) The Secretary of the Treasury, or his designee, shall be the Chairman of the Working Group.

Sec. 2. Purposes and Functions. (a) Recognizing the goals of enhancing the integrity, efficiency, orderliness, and competitiveness of our Nation's financial markets and maintaining investor confidence, the Working Group shall identify and consider:

(1) the major issues raised by the numerous studies on the events in the financial markets surrounding October 19, 1987, and any of those recommendations that have the potential to achieve the goals noted above; and

(2) the actions, including governmental actions under existing laws and regulations (such as policy coordination and contingency planning), that are appropriate to carry out these recommendations.

(b) The Working Group shall consult, as appropriate, with representatives of the various exchanges, clearinghouses, self-regulatory bodies, and with major market participants to determine private sector solutions wherever possible.

(c) The Working Group shall report to the President initially within 60 days (and periodically thereafter) on its progress and, if appropriate, its views on any recommended legislative changes.

Sec. 3. Administration. (a) The heads of Executive departments, agencies, and independent instrumentalities shall, to the extent permitted by law, provide the Working Group such information as it may require for the purpose of carrying out this Order.
 ;(b) Members of the Working Group shall serve without additional compensation for their work on the Working Group.
 ;(c) To the extent permitted by law and subject to the availability of funds therefore, the Department of the Treasury shall provide the Working Group with such administrative and support services as may be necessary for the performance of its functions."

In actual fact, this secret branch of government has a sophisticated war room using every state of the art technology to monitor markets worldwide. It has emergency powers. It doesn't keep minutes. There is no freedom of information access to its deliberations. There are l47,000 entries in Google on this powerful body but I could only access l0.

The reports on it are sketchy including one from the Washington Post:

"These quiet meetings of the Working Group are the financial world's equivalent of the war room. The officials gather regularly to discuss options and review crisis scenarios because they know that the government's reaction to a crumbling stock market would have a critical impact on investor confidence around the world."

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cdb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-16-08 01:19 PM
Response to Original message
1. I have a real bad feeling about this...
after all, secret meetings that Cheney held with energy leaders didnt pan out so well for us common folk...secret meetings about Iraq, etc... so many dark secrets
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