Conservative Credit Card King Says Iraq War Wrecking American Economy


Richard Vague is a conservative businessman disgusted with the party he has belonged to for a very long time. He was the Founding CEO of the former First USA Bank which ran at the time the largest credit card operation in the United States. He later started a group called, promoting American internationalism and trying to get the American government to demonstrate respect for other peoples and nations abroad.
He also wrote for me a piece called “Terrorism: A Brief for Americans” which was distributed through the country club and rotary club circuit in America to try and get small and medium sized businessmen to understand the country was on the wrong track. A video presentation on this report can be watched here.
Above, Richard Vague states that the Iraq War is the primary driver of high oil prices. He’s got an interesting paper and set of power points that I’ll soon be releasing to shore up his argument — but no amount of offshore drilling is going to change the fact that America’s fear-mongering in the world and its convoluted brinskmanship with some countries is driving up energy costs, driving up inflation, and knocking the country’s finances into the gutter.
Just read this interesting report excerpt from Department of the Treasury titled “Minutes of the Meeting of the Treasury Borrowing Advisory Committee of the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association“:

Director Ramanathan noted that marketable borrowing – i.e. borrowing from the public – is projected to total $555 billion in FY 2008 versus just $134 billion for FY 2007, and that this large increase warranted the Committee’s focus.
The potential weakness in receipts as a result of the challenges facing the economy as well as reduced non-marketable debt issuance, large redemptions by the Federal Reserve in conjunction with its various liquidity initiatives, and expedited payments related to the fiscal stimulus package – all within a compressed time period – necessitated the increased issuance of Treasury bills, cash management bills, and shorter dated nominal coupons. Redemptions and outright sales by the Federal Reserve since the beginning of the fiscal year for liquidity purposes have resulted in the Treasury’s need to issue over $150 billion in additional bills and coupons. Moreover, state and local government issuance for which net issuance was $58 billion in fiscal year 2007 versus total a net redemption of $10 billion in 2008 fiscal year to date.

Along the same lines as Richard Vague’s concerns, this Treasury Department report indicates things are not good and not getting better.
— Steve Clemons


6 comments on “Conservative Credit Card King Says Iraq War Wrecking American Economy

  1. Aisha says:

    Financial assistance like credit cards have been in demand since lots of people are now in need of money that would help them in times of emergency. But some lending companies are luring their consumers into debt trap. It’s a good thing that CRL takes a stance and that is a call to action regarding something to do with the problem. (Now we have to deal with the horsemen, the rain of fire, and the end of days.) The CRL, or Center for Responsible Lending, has taken aim at credit cards by sponsoring HR 627, or the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009. The Credit CARD Act, as it’s called, could ensure more fairness in how card companies deal with customers, and limit things like hidden fees and retroactive interest rate increases. President Obama is on board. The CRL not going after installment loans and targeting an actual predatory lender – it’s about time. Read more on this site:


  2. Carroll says:

    I am delighted you are featuring Vauge again. He is right on target.
    But…but,but,but…we have to look behind the “symptoms” like the Iraq war to get at the primary tumor.
    If not for congress, no Iraq invasion, if not for congress, no financial market’s meltdown, if not for congress no corporate owned lying media, if not for congress no pay to play democracy, if not for congress no FISA, if not for congress no bail out of criminal CEO’s, if not for congress no Enron, if not for congress no 500 trillion dollar naitonal debt…if not for congress not doing it’s job we wouldn’t be in this condition.
    We gotta start talking about It’s the Political Corruption Stupid.
    I would love to see you start featuring some people like Glen Greenwald and David Serotia when it comes to constitutional duties of congress and the why, who and how the economy is being ruined.
    You can put in the Terrorism posts cause it’s terrorism being practiced on the American people under the guise of government.


  3. Don Bacon says:

    Right on, Steve, “fear-mongering” is a major threat to the U.S. So why the “Terrorism Salon” series???


  4. lurker says:

    My god — when do you have time to do all of these things?
    If Clemons can get conservatives to speak out against the insanity of this war, applaud him and them. I don’t care what businesses they run. He could get oil guys for all I care. This is amazing. Can you imagine Brookings or any other think tank doing this kind of thing. Good for Clemons. JohnH, your posts are really great usually, but try and think of the context that Clemmons has created and how he his changing the debate in D.C. It’s so fun to be a part of, even passively.


  5. JohnH says:

    Funny, I thought massive credit card lending at usurious interest rates played a huge role in wrecking the American economy. Could Vague be clear on that?


  6. Kathleen says:

    I apologize for being slightly OT but at 11 a.m. Dennis Kucinish is holding a Press
    Conference to introduce his new ” Oil for Iraqi Liberation” bill, prohibiting any American oil companies from profitting from Iraqi oil. Hmmmm.


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