Nancy, ‘Queen of Stonks:’ Why Pelosi Belongs in Prison

by Russell Dobular

SEC Rule 10b-5 prohibits corporate officers and directors or other insider employees from using confidential corporate information to reap a profit (or avoid a loss) by trading in the Company’s stock. This rule also prohibits “tipping” of confidential corporate information to third parties.

An “insider” is an officer, director, 10% stockholder and anyone who possesses inside information because of his or her relationship with the Company or with an officer, director or principal stockholder of the Company. Rule 10b-5’s application goes considerably beyond just officers, directors and principal stockholders. This rule also covers any employee who has obtained material non-public corporate information, as well as any person who has received a “tip” from an Insider of the Company concerning information about the Company that is material and nonpublic, and trades (i.e. purchase or sells) the Company’s stock or other securities.

This policy also applies to your family members who reside with you, anyone else who lives in your household, and family members who do not live in your household but whose securities transactions are directed by you or are subject to your influence or control, as well as trusts or other entities for which you make investment decisions.”

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Based on all of the above, Nancy and Paul Pelosi should be getting fitted for orange jumpsuits right about now. That’s what would be happening to you or me, or Martha Stewart, were our stock picks to repeatedly, mysteriously, outperform the S&P 500, and leave the annual returns of professional money managers in the dust. Once may be a lucky pick. Twice even. A good year here and there is plausible. But the Pelosis’ “good luck” isn’t confined to a particular company, transaction, or calendar year. Trade after trade and year after year they bury the smartest minds on Wall Street. There is no reasonable explanation for this feat other than the proposition that they are trading on inside information. And really, how could they not be? For a member of Congress, much less the Speaker of the House, to trade stock is like a referee making a bet on the game that they’re about to call. Let’s go back to the summer of 2021 for an example:

In May and June, investment manager and spouse to the Speaker, Paul Pelosi (this is how they work the scam-Nancy doesn’t execute the trades), purchased $11M worth of risky call options in Amazon, Apple, Alphabet (Google), and Nvidia. These types of trades only pay off if the stock reaches a “strike price,” by a certain date. If the target price isn’t met in the proper time frame, the options expire worthless. 

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Adding to the risk was the fact that the House was at the very same moment creating anti-trust legislation that would better regulate large tech companies.  In the end, a few weak proposals were drafted and passed by the House Judiciary Committee, none of which were seen as a major threat to Silicon Valley, and that weren’t brought up for a full vote in the House in any case. All of the stocks Pelosi had purchased went through the roof, partly in response to the toothless proposals.

While this doesn’t constitute hard proof of insider trading (the Pelosi’s are far too wily to do anything that wouldn’t meet the “reasonable doubt” standard in a court of law), the sheer mathematical impossibility of their annual gains simply can not be explained any other way. 

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How good are the Pelosi’s’ trades?  In 2021, they made a 69% gain on their investments. Warren Buffet, widely considered one of the greatest investors of all time, did 20%. So did George Soros, a man so canny that he is often credited with causing a collapse in the British pound in the Fall of 1992 by heavily shorting the currency. Peter Lynch, the Wall Street legend who took Fidelity’s Magellan fund from $18M to $13B between 1977-1990, did 26%. And yet the Pelosi’s left them all in the dust, more than doubling Lynch’s returns, and more than tripling Buffet’s and Soros’.  

Funny side note, the Twitter account “Nancy Pelosi Portfolio Tracker,” which produced the below graphic, was shut down immediately upon Jack Dorsey’s exit as CEO.

This was after they had received a “cease and desist order from a lawyer representing someone high up in the [Political] office.”  Apparently having her corruption laid out for all the world to see on Twitter was putting a bug up the ass of the reigning Queen of Stonks. But as the erstwhile Speaker herself has trenchantly observed, “We are a free market economy.”   

In that spirit, a plethora of Tik Tok groups and websites have sprung up to track the financial maneuvers of the Speaker and her husband, so that retail investors can pile into trades that are widely perceived as being among that rarest of beasts in the world of stock picking: a sure thing.  Time and again we have seen that any stock the Pelosi’s buy is almost guaranteed to outperform the broader market. 

As Christopher Josephs, co-founder of the social media investing app Iris, which helps users track the investments of celebrities, friends, and political figures, told Yahoo Finance Live, “The reason why Speaker Pelosi became so popular was because every trade she was making inevitably turned out to be such a long-term winner.  Albeit the entire market has gone up significantly, but these are very, very risky bets because she’s been buying LEAP options as opposed to just stock…It started early in 2020 with Crowdstrike (CRWD), and then she bought Tesla (TSLA), and there were some laws passed pro for the EV market…Then she bought Google (GOOGGOOGL) and then the laws came out that they weren’t going to go after Big Tech.”  Each of the stocks Josephs mentions were up 20-30%, as of October, 2021. 

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But if you, dear peasant, want to grab some crumbs off the Congressional Corruption table by trading like Nancy does, you may not have a lot of time left to get in on the action.  After Business Insider revealed that 54 Congressional lawmakers and 182 senior staffers were in violation of the STOCK ACT, which requires the reporting of all stock trades made by members of Congress and their staffs, momentum began to build for broad reform. 

Moderate Senator Jon Ossoff, of all people, seemingly in response to the Speaker’s contention that members of Congress should be allowed to trade unfettered because capitalism or some shit, has introduced a bill that would ban members of Congress from trading individual stocks, with the penalty being total forfeiture of their Congressional salaries.  Senator Josh Hawley is about to introduce a competing bill, which would fine lawmakers their total profits if they are caught trading. Given the kind of money the Pelosi’s and others are making off their insider moves, Hawley’s penalty is probably the one with the most teeth.  Nancy spends more on gourmet ice cream than her Congressional salary can cover.

What neither proposal includes is jail time.  ‘Cause jail is only for the little people.  And occasionally Martha Stewart.

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Democrats Shelve Build Back Better, Effectively Forfeiting Biden’s Presidency

It’s been a week that could arguably described as the effective end of the Biden presidency. Over a span of just 72 hours, the administration announced that the student loan payment freeze would expire at the end of January, that they would defer to Congress to deliver the $10,000 in student debt forgiveness they promised on the campaign trail, and that they’re shelving Build Back Better until 2022.

Permitting student loans to continue as one of covid’s most virulent variants descends upon us in the dead of winter is bad enough. Punting to a dysfunctional Congress on debt forgiveness is tantamount to abandoning it altogether. Delaying further negotiation on Biden’s would-be signature legislative accomplishment is itself an admission of defeat.

But the bad news didn’t stop there. The cherry on top came courtesy of Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who defiantly asserted her and her colleagues’ rights to buy and sell stock, citing our “free market economy” as justification.

This avalanche of self-inflicted wounds coming at a time when Democrats’ midterm prospects are already historically dark and the economy is looking increasingly precarious as inflation soars and coronavirus surges. That a party with control of both chambers of Congress and the White House, elected precisely to provide relief and guidance through the pandemic, would portray this level of indifference about delivering on their most basic of promises, begs the question of whether or not at this point, they even want to remain in power.

After all, it’s been a common refrain on the Left these past five years that the Democratic establishment would rather lose to Republicans than win with progressive candidates. The events of this week are simply a manifestation of this very priority set.

Extending the loan payment freeze and forgiving student debt would certainly be a boon to their electoral prospects in November of next year, as would coming out against the idea that one can appropriately be a public servant and a private investor at the same time.

Of course, the party isn’t willing to do any of these things, because, as we’ve been saying for years now, they would rather lose to Republicans than upset their apple cart in this way. And so instead of seeing Democrats try and right the ship, we’re seeing more a resignation to the fate they’ll soon be the minority party again, which to them is just the price of doing business.

We discuss the implosion of Build Back Better, Pelosi’s defense of stock trading by herself and her peers, and more, on episode 129 of our podcast. Click the player below to hear our full conversation, and subscribe to the Due Dissidence on Apple, StitcherSpotifyCastbox, Google Podcasts, or any major podcast player.

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Photo: Public Domain

Pelosi’s Student Debt Forgiveness Statement is Awful, Even by Her Standards

At her press conference last week, Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked a question about the Biden administration’s policy on the issue of student loan debt forgiveness. As we on the Left have long known, neither Biden nor Democratic leadership have any real interest in forgiving student loan debt, and so it wouldn’t have come as much surprise to see Pelosi dodge the question by muttering a stream of meaningless, meandering gobbledygook.

Instead, Pelosi began her response by dishonestly denying that Biden himself has the authority to forgive student loans, stating that “People think that the President of the United States has the power for debt forgiveness. He does not. He can postpone, he can delay, but he does not have that power. That has to be an act of Congress.”

Activist Jen Perelman was quick to point out the dishonesty of this statement, tweeting the following:

More shockingly, however, Pelosi, after denying that Biden could cancel student loans unilaterally, she essentially made the case that he probably wouldn’t even if he could. She continued, “On top of that, suppose your child decided at this time that they didn’t want to go to college, but you’re paying taxes to forgive somebody else’s obligations. You may not be happy about that.”

As pointed out in the above Tweet, this is as right wing an argument as they come. After all, “paying taxes to forgive other people’s obligations” is what makes all social welfare programs possible in the first place. Without it, there’s no Medicare, Medicaid, or public schools – all programs Democrats seem keen to defend against “Republican attacks.”

Once again, inaction on student debt forgiveness is hardly surprising. Broken promises are par for the course with any Democratic administration. That they would not want to betray the financial institutions that fund their campaigns by implementing this policy which enjoys overwhelming bipartisan support is as predictable as it is despicable. But the brazenness with which the Speaker of the House, one year outside what is sure to be an extremely difficult midterm election, shut down any hope of such action, is a wonder to behold.

We discuss this and more on episode 115 of the Due Dissidence podcast. To hear our full conversation, click the player below (student debt forgiveness discussion begins at 12:30):

Click the player below to hear our full conversation, and subscribe to the Due Dissidence podcast on Apple, StitcherSpotifyCastbox, Google Podcasts, or any major podcast player.

Photo: Gage Skidmore