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I’m shocked. Shocked! to find they’re gambling with our money in this established economy.
From the New York Times, “The chase for a piece of the Treasury Department’s $700 billion bailout program intensified Friday as the government considered extending it to include insurance companies as well as banks.” Also, “Michigan’s Congressional delegation is urging the Treasury secretary and the Federal Reserve chairman to use their authority as part of the $700 billion bailout package to help more consumers obtain car loans, warning that the tightened credit markets were endangering millions of jobs.”
And by the way, that last bit comes after this, “A proposed $25 billion federal loan program to help retool the American auto industry would speed the development of electric cars and other alternative-fuel vehicles, a Chrysler executive said Wednesday.” Any other time, a $25 billion loan for the automakers would be front page news. Now, it’s barely noticed.
Well, the government just gave PNC bailout funds to buy National City Bank. One reason National City became a target is that it was deemed unworthy of bailout funds itself. So here I am, paying federal taxes in Cleveland that are being used to shut down one of our biggest employers and most important corporate citizens.
Back when we used to manufacture things, some people said the government should have an industrial policy like many other countries: they should protect certain vital industries until they were profitable, and provide more funding and tax breaks for research. But that wasn’t allowed, because it would be “picking winners”, so every goddamned factory in Cleveland went belly up. Well, what the fuck is the National City deal but the government picking winners? I expect Dennis Kucinich to have an aneurysm over this any minute. He voted against the bailout both times.
I predict approximately none of that auto industry money is going to go into research. It’s all going for pension and healthcare expenses. All that shit would have ended up on the government’s plate anyway once the automakers bite the dust.
How did motherfucking banks and financiers get so powerful? How did they set things up so they can get government money, but manufacturing can’t? Is it a simple matter of corruption? These fucking bankers have spent so long buried in their spreadsheets that they have forgotten the only thing that generates an overall return on investment: productivity. Without productivity, all the wheeling and dealing and mortgages and bonds and all that crap are just a zero-sum game. Finance used to be a means to enable productivity, but nowadays productivity is a means to enable finance. It can’t go on like this forever. Government intervention or not, we are in for a hard fall.
I’m not sure what you thought, but I’d say it’s playing out as expected.
Oh, and here’s my cite I should have put in the OP: http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/081025/meltdown_evolving_bailout.html
And taking the rest of us with you. On a positive note, the developed nations of the world are working on a plan to not let the rampant greed, corruption and stupidity in the US destroy everyone’s financial heath. I hope.
With 700 billion on the table, don’t expect anything to go as planned.
Incidentally, that “proposed” auto industry “loan” isn’t proposed at all. It was passed - before the bailout itself was. I started a Pit thread about it.
Maybe Canada could come up with a bailout plan to buy the US. In anticipation, I’m trying to use the tern ‘hoser’ at least once a day.
Hey look on the bright side. We have taken a *step up *from handing out suitcases full of hundred dollar bills! At least this time we have some general idea of who is fucking us.
That is why the true staunch citizens, the members of both parties, in the House that voted against this bailout bill twice, were right.
This is like handing your drunk brother-in-law a thousand bucks cash so he can find a place to sleep for a couple of days, buy some clothes and look for a job. There were no failsafes in the plan to keep him from blowing it on hookers and cocaine.
This was just a multi-hundreds-of-billions of dollars appropriation to an executive department head with absolutely no oversight as to how it was spent.
A trillion on Iraq. A trillion on this economic big business bail-out. Where does 2 trillion come from, and why doesn’t it get spent on things I want, like the space program, or education, or healthcare, or blanketing the country in solar panels?
I’m tired of hearing, “we can’t afford that.”
Sorry, I must have missed your thread. And that’s the weird thing. A $25 billion bailout passed without, as far as I can tell, much comment. The Chrysler bailout in 1979 (of “only” $1.5 billion) passed only after much debate and discussion. But this one seemed to involve much less discussion. On the other hand, Obama’s talk with Joe the Plumber about the idea of increasing taxes on the wealthiest Americans engendered a lot of discussion. We seem to be at an age when spending government money is much easier than raising it.
And as levdrakon suggests, a lot of other things we could spend money on (social services, healthcare, infrastructure, alternative energy, research, etc.) get money only reluctantly.
I’m kinda busy. Please insert my standard “running dog jackals of the Wall Streeet ruling class” rant here.
Exactly. I don’t know what people were thinking when they supported this in the first place.
Oh wait, yes I do: “Capitalism has failed and the nation’s economy will be destroyed if this bailout isn’t passed!” So goes another lesson that people will learn and forget about 5 minutes later.
Can’t do that, ol’ bean. Funding those things would shift the fundamentals of our economy over to a different sector, and the people in the sectors getting the big bucks now would have to either figure out how to adapt or go broke, and asking them to do that would be downright unAmerican.
Back around the beginning of the month, I kept hearing how tough a bargain Hank Paulson would strike with those failing banks. Color me unimpressed.
FWIW, the WaPo also did a story about this on Wednesday:
So the ‘bailout’ consists, in pretty sizable part at least, of giving sweet deals to healthy banks that don’t need help.
Here is Joe Nocera’s column in the New York Times today. During an employee conference call at JPMorgan Chase, an employee asked how the $25 billion the bank received from the government would affect its plans to make loans. The answer, as given in the Times:
In short, they plan to use the money to buy stuff.