Category: Argumentative

BEWARE: The Horrors of Genetically Engineered Foods


The author does not own copyright of the image above, nor of the video below; usage of both is non-commercial.

A Film Review

Genetics is a very young branch of science. Its wonders range from biology and evolution, forensics, cultural and anthropological advances. Scientists these days are now even eager to use it in medicine for pharmaceutical development and cure. It is admirable to hear scientists are eager to use genetics to relieve people of current terminal diseases such as cancer. However, it is very horrifying to hear that genetics is now being used, or misused by scientists paid by big corporations, agribusinesses like the infamous Monsanto, to generate mass production of foods we buy from fast-food chains, and even the ones we buy from the supermarkets and serve to our families.

In the 2010 documentary film, Food Inc., horrors of genetically engineered foods supplied to McDonalds and supermarkets around the nation are exposed. Products like corn used in the production of not just in wide array of foods, but in many commodities including medicines, are no longer going through the natural processes of agriculture and farming. That harvesting is happening all-year-round, as agribusinesses are able to find ways through GMO, or through the use and misuse of genetics, to boost productions leading to lucrative profits.

Personally, as a mother of three, I think the most horrifying part of this film, is to learn that a two-year old boy died from an ecoli in a genetically modified made hamburger patties. His mother and grandmother even nearly beg to a Republican senator from the mainland (U.S.) in search for justice. And yet just the recall of those hamburger patties alone seemed next thing to impossible. Neither did they hear an apology from responsible parties.

Furthermore, it is frustrating to learn, that Monsanto even has the nerve to patent GMO made soya beans. First of all, I am totally not in favor of using GMO on foods at all. As a writer, just in the usage of words alone: “Foods engineered?” It doesn’t sound right to me. And to use GMO in agriculture, it means just one thing: GREED. Second, no one should own or patent something that nature owns. Anyone can claim ownership of a land (if one owns the land). But to limit the farming of any crops (just like that soya bean Monsanto just got patent for) simply, because nature owns their creation. And if those agribusinesses concern, is their evil formulation of genes and chemicals (for the heck of earning profits), then by all means: remove those evils out of the products they are providing us, consumers. We don’t need them! And they should spare the animals of some respect as well.

Nonetheless, another horrifying fact of GMO, is how they (the irresponsible scientists, chemists, and agribusinesses) come with their evil innovations and  ideas of using it on crops: They use GMO first on rodents, and then among pigs (to make them heavier and for fast breeding), beefs (to make them more meaty), chickens (to make the breast bigger, for that is the most in demand part ), and fishes (larger). And though they see massive growth, but there are also physical deformities among their “guinea pigs” that are too obvious to ignore. And yet they disregard and continue using GMO in agriculture and aquaculture, and animal raising. So, now it’s everywhere, and in almost every food product we buy from the supermarkets and fast food chains.

On a more personal note, seeing this film though, makes me proud and relieved that I am in Hawaii. For in here, in our state, our kama’ainas (Hawaii locals) are strongly fighting head-on with Monsanto. In our state, as far as I know, Monsanto could not operate their kind of farming here (or at least not, the way Monsanto want it)

Monsanto to me, and the likes of it, are evils with horns and tails, holding their pitchforks; dragging us to the hell of health destruction–beware!

Finally, Food Inc. is not just a review of diabolic processes that Monsanto and all other irresponsible big agribusinesses are doing behind our backs. Because this film is educating us, by telling us, consumers: Sustainable farming is not far-fetch. Therefore, we should not settle to alternatives that are not even tested. Sustainable farming is indeed very doable, but only to those who are willing to comply with the law and be ethical in doing business. That sustainable farming is truly doable, but only to those who are willing to do the hard works and be satisfied with just enough money, or at least not to earn money at the expense of people who are patronizing them.

Moreover, I do know (and understand) business is business. In fact, I am a business major student. But shouldn’t business come with responsibilities as well? For as consumers, we are very much entitled to fair and equitable business. And that every time we buy something, let us keep in mind that what comes with the money we are paying producers like Monsanto (and from the manufacturers as well); what comes with our trust, is their responsibility to ensure whatever they are trading to us is not harmful to us in any ways.

For the horrors of genetically engineered foods are as follow:

1. They are chemically produced.

2. Chemicals and improvised genes are never tested in humans.

3. The guinea pigs (poor animals mentioned above) use for testing exhibit severe deformities internally and externally.They deserve dignity too.

4. GMO foods heighten obesity rates.

5. Small farmers are losing their rights to farm crops belonging to nature.

6. Mass production leads to mishandling of foods.

7.Mass production and agriculture contribute 51% to our growing predicament on climate change.

In an article, written by Nicolas Gryson, DNA (which is of course, the main ingredient of any GMO made foods) handling should be as follows:
Important food-processing conditions, for example temperature and pH, may lead to degradation of the DNA, rendering PCR analysis impossible or GMO quantification unreliable. . . Food processes involving mechanical stress, high temperature, pH variations, enzymatic activities, and fermentation affect the primary structure of DNA and cause, for example, hydrolysis, oxidation, and deamination of the DNA.

What this study means, careful and thorough evaluations are must prior to even contemplating use of GMO (which obviously Monsanto and the rest never get into).

To conclude, this is one of the best documentary films I ever watch in my life. This does not incriminate agribusinesses like Monsanto in a blunt and careless manner, rather this unravels the truth that we, food consumers are entitled to know. Moreover, this film covers processes, and interviews witnesses (both farmers and consumers, and experts) from different parts of the world, to bring awareness and encourage sustainability. Likewise, the film aims to introduce us to healthy lifestyles that our bodies and Mother Earth are long seeking from us. Let us be responsible to ourselves,  and to our families. Let us be critical of the foods we eat by reading labels and nutritional facts at all times; likewise, by considering the health ramifications of nutritional and economic choices we make. And if we have a place in our homes to plant organic foods, please, let us do so–for that’s even better. Because organic farming is one the best long-range solution (and not to mention, it’s very healthy too).

Lastly, we should really appreciate this film. Because this documentary encourages awareness on how foods are being handled these days. We have the rights to be educated consumers after all. Let us keep in mind: WE EAT TO NOURISH OUR BODIES. However, with the plague of genetically modified and engineered foods, we can no longer confidently say such foods are nutritious still. Health is wealth. We should never bargain for less.

This version of YouTube is not complete:

The film is available via NetFlix.

For Dish subscribers, it’s available OnDemand for free.

Or you may check


Are We in the Viral Age of Loneliness?

20130417-053717.jpgSabiniana Balagtas Baliba
George Garneau, Ph.D.
English 200
2 May 2013

Are We In the Viral Age of Loneliness?

As technology is vastly revolutionizing our lives, the World Wide Web is pulling us from our world of reality. In fact, Canadian writer Stephen Marche writes, “Social media—from Facebook to Twitter—have made us more densely networked than ever. Yet for all this connectivity, new research suggests that we have never been lonelier (or more narcissistic)—and that this loneliness is making us mentally and physically ill.”

In the Atlantic article Facebook Making Us Lonely, Marche further writes: “According to the Los Angeles coroner’s report, she lay dead for the better part of a year before a neighbor and fellow actress, a woman named Susan Savage, noticed cobwebs and yellowing letters in her mailbox, reached through a broken window to unlock the door, and pushed her way through the piles of junk mail and mounds of clothing that barricaded the house. Upstairs, she found Vickers’s body, mummified, near a heater that was still running. Her computer was on too, its glow permeating the empty space.”

Marche passionately argues: “She lay dead for the better part of a year before a neighbor and fellow actor, a woman named Susan Savage, noticed cobwebs and yellowing letters in hermailbox, reached through a broken window to unlock the door, and pushed her way through the piles of junk mail and mounds of clothing, that barricaded the house. Upstairs, she found Vickers’s body, mummified, near a heater that was still running. Her computer was on too, its glow permeating the empty space.”

Vickers’s death indeed, was so horrifying. Because apparently before her passing, she was too hooked on fan Internet sites that she ended up isolating herself from families and friends. (Marche) What was even more horrible, even the coroner could not tell the exact date of her death, for her cadaver was extremely decomposed already when a friend found her.

However, in a research study, science and medical experts Emma L. Pelling and Katherine M. White stress, that the “high-level Social Networking Websites (SNWs) use is influenced by attitudinal, normative, and self-identity factors.” What this study means is that the impact of social networking depends on one’s individuality, and not in general.20130417-060350.jpg

Realistically speaking, the account of Vicker’s death is not credible enough for anyone to question the humongous contributions of Internet and technology to our lives. Yes, both do pose some challenges, just like everything else in this world—for in everything, even in everyone (and that includes us), there are always two contrasting sides—for that is the irony of life, the greatest irony of life! Moreover, one should not generalize that all social networkers are like Vickers—who prior to her death have long suffered from depression—as the late former starlet also faced other issues of stardom, aging, and etc. Therefore, to conclude that she died because of social networking, and that all social networkers, like us, bloggers, are either lonely or narcissist, is wrong. Because we are not like Vickers, and it is not fair to compare us to her.

The narcissism that narrow minded and cynical people see in us, social networkers, is actually self-confidence brought by self-efficacy—as we are now so empowered by a great deal of knowledge and information, that no encyclopedia has ever did to humanity before. Most importantly, the burden of addressing all the dilemmas surrounding the effectiveness of the two powerful mediums of Internet and technology lies in our hands. For we should know better our responsibilities to ourselves—we must ensure that everything works to everyone’s greatest advantage—and that is not being narcissist, rather, that’s being wise.

In fact, another research study for social behavior and personality, published by the Society for Personality Research, scholars I-Ping Chiang, Yi-Hsuan Chiang, and Yu-Chi Lin, of the National Taipei University, discovered that on blogging (which is one of the most popular social networking activities): “People prefer to leave messages and make recommendations about Sites that are within their realm of interest, such as the blogs of friends or people with similar interests.” What this means to me, is that blogging and all social networking activities are enriching our lives.

20130417-065519.jpgPersonally, terrified of Vickers’s death, I honestly pondered if writing and blogging is doing me any favor at all. As I actively write and submit articles to various websites. In fact, I have accounts in all blogging sites too. I also send essays and my creative works, poetries and sentiments to Yahoo! However, deep solitude made me realized the blessings of this medium. Moreover, it is my nature, that when I am in doubt of anything, I always use my two hands in gauging all issues in life—on my right, I weigh all the goodness—and on my left, I weigh all the evilness. If the goodness is more than the evilness, then I will strive to straighten the latter. However, if it is the other way around, then I drop; I quit; I junk and get rid of anything that will not make me a better person.

Therefore, and in response to the statement of Marche, that “the drive for isolation has always been in tension with the impulse to cluster in communities that cling and suffocate,” that is not true at all. For in the blogosphere, we highly support one another. In fact, we subscribe to one another’s Sites. Yes, we may not see likes and comments all the time, and it is not because, we do not like each other’s posts, it is just that, we have personal lives to tend to. On our dealings with one another, we, of course, put cautions, as we know there are also limit to social networking too.

Regardless, the truth of the matter is, we, social networkers, bloggers, are not lonely creatures on earth. Moreover, the Internet is not in any ways making us lonely, neither, narcissist. In fact, we are passionately, and unselfishly sharing our knowledge and expertise (e.g. photography, arts, and writing; even our poetries, along with our personal journals), and we are truly enriching the World Wide Web. Because our blogs mirror how the Internet is enabling us to speak truthfully about our joys and tribulations, our successes and failures, even our dreams and downfalls. Our readers can cherish and apply the good lessons they learned from us—and they can avoid our mistakes and blunders in life, to make theirs better than ours. We, bloggers, are the new and fresh faces of journalism. We are making the Net humane.

In conclusion, indeed, the Internet and technology revolutionized and continuously revolutionizing our lives, and that the World Wide Web is pulling us from our world of reality, the old, boring, lonely and boxed reality. Thanks to Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, for through their ingenuities, and the proliferation of social networking sites, we are able to keep our passions burning, thereby, enriching our lives, thereby, enriching the World Wide Web, and in our most unique and humble ways. The Net is making us more knowledgeable and sociable. Most importantly, through social networking, through blogging, through this blessing, we are making ourselves great collaborators—for collaboration is a trait and a virtue, a major key to succeed in all walks of life and professions. We are thankful for our blogs! We are thankful for the Internet!

Works Cited

Barbour, Michael, and Cory Plough. “Social Networking In Cyberschooling: Helping to Make Online Learning Less Isolating.” Techtrends: Linking Research & Practice To Improve Learning 53.4 (2009): 56-60. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 Apr. 2013.

Doohwang, Lee, Kim Hyuk Soo, and Kim Jung Kyu. “The Impact of Online Brand CommunityType On Consumer’s Community Engagement Behaviors: Consumer-Created Vs. Marketer-Created Online Brand Community In Online Social-Networking Web Sites.” Cyberpsychology, Behavior & Social Networking 14.1/2 (2011): 59-63. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 Apr. 2013.

I-Ping, Chiang, Chiang Yi-Suan, and Lin Yu-Chi. “The Antecedents and Consequences of Blogging Behavior.” Social Behavior & Personality: An International Journal 41.2 (2013): 311-317. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 Apr. 2013.

Marche, Stephen. “Is Facebook Making Us Lonely? (Cover Story).” Atlantic Monthly (10727825) 309.4 (2012): 60. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 15 Apr. 2013.

Miller, Robert, Kristine Parsons, and David Lifer. “Students And Social Networking Sites: The Posting Paradox.” Behaviour & Information Technology 29.4 (2010): 377-382. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 Apr. 2013.

Pelling, Emma L., and Katherine M. White. “The Theory of Planned Behavior Applied to Young People’s Use of Social Networking Web Sites.” Cyberpsychology & Behavior 12.6 (2009): 755-759. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 Apr. 2013.

Porter, Alan L., et al. “Research Coordination Networks: Evidence of the Relationship Between Funded Interdisciplinary Networking and Scholarly Impact.” Bioscience 62.3 (2012): 282-288. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 Apr. 2013.


Is Google Really Making Us Stupid?

Courtesy of Google Images

Sabiniana B. Baliba

George Garneau, Ph.D.

11 March 2013

Is Google Really Making Us Stupid?

We are in the twenty-first century, and this is the Digital Age (also known as Computer Age, or Information Age). In this era, our standards of living are high, and our needs now define how we think, talk, and act. Our necessities are forcing us to multi-task, and we are only coping through the invaluable help of the International Network, commonly known as the Internet.

I had the chance to read this 2005 Atlantic article in my previous English class (last spring of 2012). Since my stand on the subject matter has not changed, and given its significance, I decided to write anew about it, for my e-letter today.

Courtesy of Google Images

In this anti-technology piece, Pulitzer finalist Nicholas Carr accuses the Internet of harming our brains. (1) Carr blames the Net for the changes he sees in his reading comprehension, likewise for his inability to concentrate when reading extensive articles. (2) He argues so passionately that it has led to a book, entitled The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains. However, is Carr’s accusation supported by science? Because contrary to his opinion, new scientific evidences are showing Internet is making us smarter and not stupid. (3)

According to Michael Rosenwald, author of the BrainGain “ . . . new evidence suggests that using the Internet could actually make you smarter, and not rot your brain” (4).

Backed by the scientific findings of Dr. Gary Small, of the Semel Institute of Neuroscience for Human Behavior, University of California, Rosenwald stresses that neurologically speaking, we are benefiting from browsing the Web, googling or Google searching, and just as “ . . . bench presses do for our chest muscles” (5).

Courtesy of Google Images

Like Rosenwald, Jonah Lehrer of the New York Times, cited Small’s scientific findings, and pointed out that science even suggested Google searches actually lead to increased activity of our dorsolateral prefrontal cortex—the exact brain area where precise talents and/or abilities like selective attention and deliberate analysis are working, to which according to Carr have allegedly vanished in this Digital Age.

Personally, I am amazed Pulitzer considered Carr for such accolade, and the award giving body solely based his nomination on this article alone–what a poor nomination! For in these modern days, indeed, our needs demand us to multi-task and that’s for practical reasons. For gone are the days of consecration, and we are no longer at liberty to spend hours “digesting” every word and every line of anything we are reading, simply because we have so much responsibilities.

Carr cited a quite relevant article dated 1960 from Marshall McLuhan. However, with more than five decades passed, is McLuhan’s theory still applicable? For Carr’s citations from the nineteenth-century are now obsolete.

In this regard, I hope we careful examine, if those citations are still applicable these days. Moreover, are there any medical or scientific findings that validate Carr’s arguments? For isn’t it, if one is talking about health, it is just fair for us, readers, to demand experts’ words before we even buy one’s hasty accusations?

In conclusion, Google is not making us stupid. Rather, it encourages us to be resourceful. Most especially, it empowers our fingertips that we now can dig on information and knowledge without carrying heavy books and burning our eyes in extensive reading. Moreover, these days, we only do things that are necessary, because we know that’s the practical way of living. For In this era of Computer Age, we think fast; we talk fast; we read fast, and we act fast, because we simply have to. For in this Digital Age, we think practically; we talk practically; we read practically, and we act practically, because we value our time. Lastly, we are coping with most of our responsibilities through the invaluable help of the Internet—we should really thank science for it!

Lastly, if one is reading slow, perhaps a new pair of reading or prescription glasses is needed. But please, let’s not be ungrateful to technology, because historically, it’s what brought humanity to success. We are the smartest animals on earth, because of our abilities to invent and innovate ways through the use of technology That has not changed to this day. And great things await to thinkers, more so, to positive thinkers.

Courtesy of

Dissecting the Needs for Dodd-Frank


(A persuasive analysis written and submitted in academia; in Modern Language Association’s format.)

Warning: This is an academic research paper, therefore, long and comprehensive, and time consuming. Thank you for your understanding!

Sabiniana Balagtas Baliba
Wayne M. Tanna, ESQ, CPA
6 December 2012


Do the Needs Justify the Act?


Unemployment, foreclosures, eviction, bankruptcy–are the bitter results of the unprincipled practices of Wall Street and the immoral and abusive powers in Washington. (Obama) Therefore, we should not allow such grave unethical practices to happen ever again, because our economy is still dwindling and millions of American families are still struggling; still “crawling” and coping with the aftermaths of recession. We should not allow grave, or amoral practices to recur, for the United States’ economy and our people ultimately cannot afford it—we ought to ensure our nation’s full recovery!


The National Bureau of Economic Research defines recession (limped the nation from years 2007 to 2010) as follows:

. . . Is a period between a peak and a trough, and an expansion is a period between a trough and a peak. During a recession, a significant decline in economic activity spreads across the economy and can last from a few months to more than a year. Similarly, during an expansion, economic activity rises substantially, spreads across the economy, and usually lasts for several years. (“U.S. Business Cycle”)

Insufficient or poor implementations of laws on accountability and transparency in Wall Street and the entire finance sector brought our nation the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression in 1929. It resulted to our highest unemployment rate, as about eight millions of Americans lost sources of living. In addition, many businesses failed, and there was a significant drop in housing prices. Millions of homeowners (from all fifty states or across the country) lost their houses; their homes foreclosed and they evicted. In addition, retirement and personal savings of many of our fellows were wiped out, and bankruptcy filings skyrocketed too. The saddest part, taxpayers were forced to bail out big banks that failed, not out of misfortunes, but because they were greedy to earn profit for themselves. They did not followed protocols, and even by passed existing laws for their selfish gains. (Obama 2010) As a result, the most comprehensive and stringent financial regulation in the history of United States was created.

Responding to the economic nightmares of recession, on June 2009, the administration of President Barack Obama proposed to United States Congress, bill H.R.4173, now enacted and known as the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, and herein referred to as the “Dodd-Frank Act” or the Act.(111thUnited States Congress)

The Act consists of 2003 pages, sixteen (16) titles—was proposed to United States Congress in June; and introduced to the floor of the House of Representative in July. A revised version was introduced on December 2, 2009 and another (in the same month) by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Representative Barney Frank (D), and by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd (D). Because of their involvement and efforts towards its legislation, on June 25, 2010 the conference committee proposed that the bill be named after the two legislators. (111th United States Congress)

The Dodd-Frank Act aimed to promote financial stability in United States by imposing rigorous standards to the finance and banking sectors. Most importantly, the Act aimed to protect American consumers from abusive practices which are rampant in the above-mentioned industries.


The 111th Congress of the United States enacted the Dodd-Frank Act with the intention of promoting financial stability by improving accountability and transparency in the financial system. . . to end ‘‘too big to fail” to protect the American taxpayer by ending bailouts. . .,” (111th United States Congress)

The sixteen provisions of Dodd-Frank were:

Title I: Financial Stability
Title II: Orderly Liquidation Authority
Title III: Transfer of Powers to the Controller, to the FDIC, the FED
Title IV: Regulation of Advisers to Hedge Funds and Others
Title V: Insurance
Title VI: Improvements to Regulations
Title VII: Wall Street Transparency and Accountability
Title VIII: Payment, Clearing, and Settlement Supervision
Title IX: Investors Protections and Improvements to the Regulations of Securities
Title X: Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection
Title XI: Federal Reserve System Provisions
Title XII: Improving Access to Mainstream Financial Institutions
Title XIII: Pay It Back Act
Title XIV: Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act
Title XV: Miscellaneous Provisions
Title XVI: Section 1256 Contracts (“Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform”)


The most politicized titles and their few detail were: Title I, Financial Stability, outlines to new agencies charged with monitoring systemic risk and researching the state of the economy; it also aimed to clarify the supervision of bank holding companies by the Federal Reserve. Likewise, to create the Financial Stability Oversight Council, and the Office of Financial Research, the two new agencies will be under the supervision of the Department of Treasury. Moreover, the President appointed the Department Secretary serving as chair for the Council. However, the appointment must be subject to confirmation by the U.S. Senate.

The Financial Stability Oversight Council were tasked to man three major responsibilities, namely: To identify risks to the financial stability of United States both from financial and non-financial organizations. Likewise, to promote market disciplines by eliminating the expectations of banks. And that they would be bailed out by the government in the event they fail. Last, but not least, to respond to emerging threats to the stability of the financial market and the economy.

The Council was comprised of 15 members (10 voting and five non-voting advisory members)is responsible to uphold and strengthen integrity, efficiency, competitiveness, and stability of the U.S. financial markets; and, to enhance consumers’ confidence in banking and finance.

Another controversial provision of the Act was Title III, also known as the Transfer of Powers to the Controller (of the FDIC and the Federal Reserve). Through the Act, FDIC (Federal Insurance Corporation) was mandated to increase the threshold of deposits insured from $100,000 to $250,000. The purpose was to streamline banking regulations and to reduce competitions and overlaps between different regulators by abolishing the Office of the Thrift Supervisions, and transferring its holding powers to the Federal Reserve.

Title VII, also known as Wall Street Transparency and Accountability, or Regulation of Over-the-Counter Derivatives, was another another title of the Act. According to the recently published congressional research study written by Rena Miller and Kathleen Ann Ruane, “The financial crisis implicated the over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives market as a major source of systemic risk. . . . Number of firms used derivatives. . . . Which generated enormous losses that threatened to bankrupt not only the firms themselves but also their creditors and trading partners?”

Critics labeled it as the too-crafted “Glass-Steagall for the 21st century,” (“The Dodd-Frank Act’s Push out Rule” ); criticized for its stringency, and/or complete separation of banking, investing, and insurance business activities, as existed previously before the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act in 199. (“The Dodd-Frank Act’s Push out Rule”)

Title Seven likewise had to ensure the use of the following:

  • Advances from the Fed discount window;
  • Fed credit facility that is not part of a facility with broad-based eligibility under Section 13 of the Federal Reserve Act

FDIC insurance or guaranty; for the purpose of:

  • Making any loan to, or purchasing any stock, equity interest or debt obligation of, any swaps entity;
  • Buying the assets of any swaps entity, or guaranteeing any loan or debt issuance of any swaps entity; or
  • Entering into any assistance, loss-sharing, or profit-sharing arrangement with a swaps entity. (““The Dodd-Frank Act’s Push-out Rule”)

Title X as explained in the Conference of State Bank Supervisors as follows: was the creation of an independent Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (“Bureau”), and must be located within Federal Reserve, and led by a Director, duly appointed by the President (and confirmed by the U.S. Senate). Individuals and entities engaged in offering or providing consumer financial products and services were greatly affected by this title. It was also the most contended among the fifteen other provisions. And was accused as the most unconstitutional by critics and the Republicans. (“Title X”)

Title XIV added disclosure and significant guidelines and stringent laws to mortgage lending that dramatically affect brokers, lenders, appraisers, and all others involved or doing their courses of business in the mortgage lending industry. Included in the provision of the Act, was the creation of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), also known as the “Bureau” is empowered by law of rulemaking authority.

According to Committee on Consumer on Financial Services, of the American Bar Association, “. . .Title XIV was to become effective when the final regulations implementing the provision are effective. If no regulation implementing a provision of the law had been issued by January 21, 2013, then that provision becomes effective as of that date.”


The creation and enactment of H.R. 4173 tend to inrease transparency and accountability as follows:

  • By improving consumers protection to save every American who is seeking loan, mortgages, credit cards and many others, from the pitfalls of tricky lending;
  • By putting end to bailouts (“to end too big to fail”)
  • By instilling discipline through strict implementation of stringent laws and regulations;
  • By creating a council and bureau solely tasked to monitor and address risks in both in financial and non-financial markets;
  • By ensuring transparency and accountability on derivatives, investments, hedge funds, payday lenders;
  • By incorporating Volcker Rule (named after Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker) restricting banks from speculative investments,
  • By implementing reforms to corporate governance and executive compensation practices;
  • By giving shareholders a say on pays and corporate affairs;
  • By intensifying investors’ protection by ensuring credit agencies are complying with laws and regulations, and that the investors can have an access to legit information and facts;
  • By enhancing Whistle-Blower Protection and Benefits, that resulted from inability of existing policies of Security Exchange Commission to detect multi-billion dollar ponzi scheme (e.g. Bernard Madoff’s Scam of the Century). (Castellina)


Hope, better future, stronger and reliable economy—these among the many others, defined what Dodd-Frank Act meant to me!

I lost my full-time job in 2008, and the following year of 2009, our house went through foreclosure, that led to my mother’s filing of bankruptcy of Chapter 7 (liquidation), so we could save our house. Although she also lost her second job, we, her children, strongly believed that her financial dilemma was brought by the second mortgage that her ex-husband (our stepfather) defrauded her into. In barely two years of marriage, and without our knowledge, he refinanced our house four times (when our mortgage was almost paid off when he came to our lives). He pocketed all the equity monies he got from the refinancing. Through painstaking and costly investigation, we found out that her ex-husband knew someone from the lender, and most of her requirements and signatures were forged. The man connived with a friend, who works for Beneficial, the lender for the second mortgage that he got her into and beyond her will.

Modesty aside, I knew I had to share this testimony to attest such horrendous practices in the finance sectors were really happening, and that my family was living testimony that those nightmares of recession did existed and hampered American lives.

For only through legislation, aided by these kind of testimonies, we can assure such things would never ever happen again.

As a student, and soon to be an accounting professional, I was delighted to hear now, with the enactment of Dodd-Frank Act, lenders, banks, or creditors, the government could ensure all loan contracts must “readable” by ordinary consumers like me, who were non-attorneys and therefore, did not have the capacity to understand technical languages, and legal terminologies. Moreover, through this, ordinary consumers (like me) “won’t get unwittingly caught by overdraft fees,” (Obama).

I completely understand the sentiments of some legislators that the creation of an independent bureau might be a way to avoid scrutiny of the Congress and the Office of the President; and, might be a violation of of the Constitution. However, despite its imperfections, we should not trash the bill just because of some loopholes.

Our legislators should work collectively to define vague terms and fill those loopholes, to make the Act in full compliance of the constitution.

Lastly, we must keep in mind the huge need for the Act! That although there might be certain parts of the legislation that may seemed so vague, opposing members of the U.S. Congress should speak and be heard, to revise or amend the Act, but not to trash it “straight to the waste basket” and just as most Republicans legislators wanted to. Because the American families needed this act (and we still do).

We should urge the GOP and democrats to stop politicizing the Act! Politics should always end once counting of votes is finished, and the election is over. For the elected officials have works to do. Both parties should learn to work with each other collaboratively, no matter how impossible it may seem, simply because they have responsibilities to their constituents who voted and hired them to lead–so, they must lead their people to good.

Most importantly, we have not fully recovered yet from the recession. Although our economy is quite picking up, it is not stable yet. In addition, there are still a lot of us in dire need of help. Our legislators, both from GOP and the democrats should once and for all reach a consensus, not just on Dodd-Frank, but in all fiscal and economic legislations.


Indeed, unemployment, foreclosures, eviction, bankruptcy–are the bitter results of the unprincipled practices of Wall Street and the immoral and abusive powers in Washington. (Obama) Therefore, we should not allow such grave unethical practices to happen ever again, because our economy is still dwindling and millions of American families are still struggling; and still seemingly “crawling” in coping with the aftermaths of the worst recession. We should not allow grave, or amoral practices to recur, for the United States’ economy and our people ultimately cannot afford another recession to take place! We should ensure our full recovery!

We do need stringent laws and regulations that will ensure valued investors that our economy is picking up. We do need stringent laws and regulations that will ensure American families would never go through the same chaotic economy ever again! We do need stringent laws and regulations, for those are reasonable and critical to regain the full confidence of American consumers and investors. We do need stringent laws and regulations, because anything that involves money always presents temptations, but those laws will ensure that even in the most remote situations, no one can play and take advantage of us, consumers, ever again!

We do need the Dodd-Frank Act to ensure, that there will be laws that will protect our consumers’ rights, that in the event of non-compliance, there would be punishments in place for offenders and violators. We do need the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, because we cannot afford to spend our taxpayers’ money to bail out companies who abused American consumers and disregarded law. It does not make sense to bailout those banks and big mortgage companies who deceived our people and hurt our economy. For what lies in Dodd-Frank Act is the financial security of every American.

We should not go through the same things that harmed us so detrimentally, because we are not even done cleaning all the mess of the recession; we have not even recovered yet! For the only way we can truly ensure our full recovery, is to set laws that will make it clear to offenders and violators, they can never mess up with us again! Because if we would not establish such safety nets, after all that we have been through, it only shows we did not learned anything at all! Wouldn’t it be such a shame to our faithful allies around the world that we keep on going back to the same crisis? Let us not overlook that there are many nations depending on us too, not just about peace or war, but also on finance, trading, and banking. For regardless, if one admits or not, the crisis happened, because we let those unscrupulous culprits deceived us. They took advantage of the loopholes in our legal and finance systems. Though they were the only ones who gained from their unethical practices, but it boomeranged not just to them, but to all of us! Let us keep in mind that we all have responsibilities to be diligent and vigilant in ensuring our welfare!

Finally, for more than four months of being in our (business) law class, we learned that laws were born out of some people’s unethical practices. This is why Dodd-Frank did not spawn out of nowhere; its creation resulted from grave, or amoral practices in the finance industry. Therefore, we have to enforce the act! The needs are so humongous, for that’s how bad the culprits of recession have caused our lives, and have caused our nation! For with this kind of dwindling economy, we need laws like Dodd-Frank, that will ensure our rights and welfare is duly protected. Most importantly, America cannot afford another recession. We cannot afford bailing out those careless companies and corporations anymore. Because if we do not stop bailing them out, it is more likely, that America would be bankrupt too. What is worse, no one would bailout our nation, and we are all doomed!


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