While they raked in six-figure salaries, Fannie Mae and government-sponsored sibling Freddie Mac engaged in Enron-style accounting, plunged into debt and helped usher in the subprime housing meltdown through reckless lending practices.
Bill Clinton, the man who appointed Daley to the Fannie Mae board, also appointed Emanuel to the Freddie Mac board of directors at a time when its oversight manager called the quasi-governmental agency "so pliant" that it enabled rampant book-cooking. Freddie Mac's stock skyrocketed; its CEOs helped themselves to massive bonuses. Emanuel's hometown paper, the Chicago Tribune, exposed how Emanuel's "profitable stint" during this corruption-plagued period entailed almost no work:
The board met no more than six times a year. Unlike most fellow directors, Emanuel was not assigned to any of the board's working committees, according to company proxy statements. Immediately upon joining the board, Emanuel and other new directors qualified for $380,000 in stock and options plus a $20,000 annual fee, records indicate.
On Emanuel's watch, executives told the board of a plan to use accounting tricks to mislead shareholders about outsize profits the government-chartered firm was then reaping from risky investments. The goal was to push earnings onto the books in future years, ensuring that Freddie Mac would appear profitable on paper for years to come and helping maximize annual bonuses for company brass.
And now the torch may be passed in an endless Windy City circle, from Daley to Emanuel, from Emanuel to Daley, with Obama. 'Round and 'round it goes in Chicago on the Potomac. Remember: When Crony State corruptocrats brag about "job creation," the only jobs they've ever created are each other's.
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