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Pulling the TARP Over Our Eyes


Business  (tags: bailouts, Henry Paulson, mortgages, banks, lobbyists, TARP, US Treasury )

RC
- 2130 days ago - nytimes.com
US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson calls the bailout fund for banks & mortgages lenders the "troubled asset relief program" - TARP. I call it bullsh*t. Finance lobbyists are scrambling to get the most on the $ for their pimps. You & I will pay bigtime.



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Comments

RC deWinter (418)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 10:10 am
Okie-dokie, this site is EFFED UP...This comment goes with my other story...LMAO...HELP SOMEBODY!
 

RC deWinter (418)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 10:17 am
This is weird....when I posted this initially a comment from another story was here...anyway, this story portends financial grimness for we the people for years to come...our great-grandchildren might have a shot at balancing the budget.
 

Pamylle G. (461)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 10:45 am
Indentured servitude for all ! With a FEW exceptions, of course...
 

. (0)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 10:55 am
The U.S. Economy is identical to the Care2 News Computer Network; they are both in EMERGENCY IMMINENT 'CRASH' WARNING mode! Meltdown dead ahead!
"WARNING -- WARNING -- young Will Robinson, danger approaches!"
 

Marian E. (152)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 11:04 am

The only person I really trust to deal with this is (former) President Bill Clinton.
Of course there are no Clintons in line for a new presidency so I am doubtful
that we are going to have any real help here.

Thank you Cate.
 

. (0)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 11:12 am
Watch how our money is funneled:
$10.00 a Gallon at the Pumps.
$100.00 Meat Selections
$20.00 Loaf of Bread.
100% Bill Increases.
300% Tax Increase.
No More Loans!
No Hope!
HELP!
 

RC deWinter (418)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 11:25 am
Marian, I'm standing right next to you on that one. People can revile Bill all they want, but I would take him over ANY of the current candidates in a heartbeat. The thing he ever really effed up on, IMHO, was NAFTA.
 

Blue Bunting (855)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 11:41 am
TAKE ACTION NOW!



I just sent the following letter to my congressional delegation, the congressional leadership, and the committees with oversight. I urge everyone to send their own.

"I just read the administration’s plan for the Wall Street bailout. My initial reaction is, “You are out of your tiny little minds!” This is a monstrously bad plan with no guidelines for dispensing the money, no protections for taxpayers, and explicitly prohibits any oversight. Any member of Congress brain dead enough to vote for this proposal deserves to be tarred and feathered, placed in the stocks, and pelted with rotten produce, before being run out of the country.

If we have learned anything over the past eight years, it is that you never give any member of the Bush administration a blank check for anything. This administration, best noted for gross incompetence and pervasive corruption, cannot be trusted with spare change, let alone $700 billion, without intensive, detailed oversight. It would not be unreasonable given their record to require specific direct congressional approval for each and every expenditure (including for postage). Strict controls and oversight by both Congress and the courts must be in place before even considering any proposal from this administration.

Any acceptable proposal must include detailed guidelines for spending the money including mandatory discounting of financial instruments purchased, replacement of all of the senior executives and boards of institutions receiving assistance, implementation of strict regulations and oversight of these institutions, and guarantees that the taxpayers will be the primary beneficiaries of this program. Anything less is simply rewards, stupidity, incompetence, and unbridled greed. I urge you in the strongest possible terms to reject this and any other bailout proposal which does not meet these standards."

We need to flood their offices so they are more afraid of us than of Wall Street or the presidunce.

start here:

http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm
 

Laurie W. (189)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 11:44 am
I felt a hair ball coming up this morning as the continue to connect the fact so so many Americans were taking out mortages they couldn't afford.Excuse me ...? If rent was higher than what a person would be paying for a house payment monthly...and eventually having one's own home is part of the American dream we are always been sold why wouldn't we try to buy. It's not "WE" the little people who decided to send our jobs overseas for the tax breaks.Half the time workers don't even get forwarned their job won't exist till the last moment..kinda hard to budget that in.These companies just like Bush kept pushing the just go out and shop and help our economy line, and like alot of sheep alot of citzens did just that...Meanwhile mangement couldn't cram enough bonus dollars in their pockets fast enough with inside knowledge their companies were going in the red....I'm so sick of the fallout crap from the top of the ladder. Same old line used by abusers...I wouldn't have hit you if you haven't been asking for it....RIGHT!
 

Blue Bunting (855)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 11:54 am
I found this posted over at CROOKS AND LIARS.com and thought I'd share it with all of you:


Congress totally abdicated their role years ago and both sides are to blame. As representatives of the people, they just plain suck. An argument could be made that we have been experiencing taxation without representation for some time now and there was a time when those were fighting words. I would LOVE to see a full page ad in the major dailies from U.S. citizens (since our representatives aren’t up to it) explaining our contractual demands in return for the $700 billion bailout (and you know this is just ’seed’ money–it’s gonna be much more). Sort of a “we’ll give you the money, but here are the conditions” thing:

1. In recognition of their complete f*$k waddery, CEOs and brokers of and advisers to the rescued financial institutions will repay 100% of their illegally and fradulently acquired commissions, plus a 20% f*$k waddery surcharge and a 10% ‘administrative’ fee (they should be familiar with these 'make believe line items' because they are the ones who initiated their use).
2. Future salaries for financial executives will be commensurate with training and experience. Since, based on your balance sheets, your level of skill indicates negative training and experience, you will be paying us from now on.
3. In re: to Mr. Paulson asserting that he will have complete say over how and to whom our money is dispersed with no recourse to review or legal action. HAHAHAHAHAHA. Good one, Mr. Paulson. You are such a card. What? You've got to be %#&!*% us? YOU ARE SERIOUS ABOUT THIS?
Well in that case: NO WAY, NO HOW, NO CHANCE. You want our money, you WILL be subject to review by whomever and in whatever way we deem appropriate. Look dude, you’re not dealing with a lame ass Congress here. We are THE PEOPLE and, whatever Congress might be stupid enough to do, we’re not stupid enough to give you (former Chairman of Goldman Sachs) lots of our money to distribute to your friends (who f*$ked up royally while you were one of them) with no “adult supervision.” Ain’t gonna happen.
4. And while we’re at it, Mr. Paulson, an annual report to Congress is not sufficient. We want an independent auditing agency set up with the teeth to force compliance, quarterly reports about how your great plan is working and a website where all activities are recorded for public view. AND a public stockade for pelting tomatoes at the most egregious of the f*$k wads.
5. Oh, and don’t pull the panic crap on us–we’ve fallen for that gimmick one too many times. It took you guys years to f*$k this up, we deserve more than one weekend to come up with plan. If it truly is going to go all to hell in handbasket within 48 hours, well then we guess you should’ve maybe said something sooner, huh?

Signed,

The Beleaguered, but Strangely Reinvigorated, American People
 

Jim Phillips (3215)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 12:26 pm
When I first heard that paulson got a blank check to help with Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac a few weeks ago, I screamed out, "NO. NO!" A blank check without any congressional or auditing oversight... "SCREAM"...

Now, this recent wall street brokerage firms, banks, housing and the list goes on and on should not be allowed any breaks from us taxpayers. The pukes got deregulation a few years ago and, now, look at what has happened. More screaming!

Blue Bunting's comments are well worth reading and ACTION should be done immediately!

Write, call your congresscritters ASAP! and voice the strongest comments you muster without using vile words. Hmm. maybe vile words would help... lol...

TY, Regina.

 

Blue Bunting (855)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 2:15 pm

The Paulson bailout proposal is a historic swindle. It provides the most help to the financial institutions that made the worst investment decisions, ignores relief to homeowners, and fails to limit CEO compensation. BUSHCO needs to explain why this is supposed to work - not try to steamroll Congress into giving it a blank check. Whatever happens, the crisis marks the death of Republican philosophy. I already contacted my representatives.
 

Joycey B. (750)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 2:17 pm
Thanks for this informative post Cate.
 

RC deWinter (418)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 2:25 pm
Thanks, Blue....I edited your letter and wrote both Dodd & Lieberman - much good will it do! Lieberman may as well be a Repug outright and Dodd is, I am sure, even now being heavily lobbied by banking& mortgage interests for this handout....
 

Carol W. (119)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 3:05 pm
This is insanity!

Great letter Blue. I too copied & edited a bit and sent via email, Bond & McCaskill.
Ty Cate.

 

Carolyn T. (234)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 3:11 pm
Noted. Blue, you provided a great service in your prototype letter and because it was available I got down to business,revised it a bit and actually got it sent off in short order. Cate, this is yet another important story from you...thank you for bringing it to us!
 

Pete Conrads (91)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 3:59 pm
1. Thanks Cate, You will find these debacles
2. Blue Bunting, you are hereby nominated to represent "we the people" by writing all first/rough drafts to the government,

3. Carolyn will be our letter refinement specialist!!!!!!
4. I will cheer from sidelines while drinking last beers - crap! power went out!!!!!!

ROFLMAO!
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 4:56 pm
It sure is BS, but I'm afraid the worst is yet to come!
Louise B.
 

Carol W. (119)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 5:02 pm
Yes, well done Cate.
Also Blue, wow with the links in your comment. Wonderful finish and uptake.
A thousand stars to Blue.
 

Ken S. (38)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 6:22 pm
Good post Cate, but won't hold breath waiting for a reasoned realistic outcome from this debacle. This is just window dressing to fool you the people, while they swindle BIGGER truckloads of cash, to hide away. There IS NO respect for the citizens...none at all...just expect you to mill around in ever diminishing circles......they got you into this mess....and you really don't expect the same ones to get you out of it????????? I see a big flock of pigs flying over head ...it has started to rain pig sh*t again.....bugger!!!!!!!
 

Ken S. (38)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 6:25 pm
Cate, something has gone crazy on this site...my post @5:44pm was in your other post....ken
 

Michelle Neubert (1)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 10:09 pm
i just read that treasury secretary, Paulson, said in an ABC interview that FOREIGN BANKS holding toxic u.s. mortgages will qualify for part of the $700. bailout. so this is an international bailout. this is so totally corrupt.
 

Blue Bunting (855)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 10:38 pm
Something's wrong

I keep trying to envision what I would do if I were God and could just, y'know, fix things. I mean, without changing all physical law or anything. Just redistribute a lot of wealth and say, 'What part of 'Thou shalt not steal' didn't you understand?" (Maybe I'd add a few words to remind people that it wasn't the abortionists and queers and uppity women who got Jesus so pissed off that he turned over tables in the temple, it was usurers.) And I'm still at a loss.

But I'd certainly take away all that money from all those people who have been getting rich by bleeding the rest of us dry. There shouldn't be any billionaires, dammit. There shouldn't be people sitting pretty whose "work" consists mainly of going for drinks or golf with other people who wear watches worth more than the average full-time worker's annual salary.

I'd physically move some people around, of course. I'd remove a lot of pot dealers and hookers from jails, for one thing, and replace them with a number of political operatives and "businessmen" whose names you already know, along with quite a few you never heard of, who are the architects of what we have seen. (I think their former residences would also make nice homes for all those people they kidnapped from New Orleans and put in toxic trailers - don't you?) And then I'd move all their money back to the ordinary humans whose misfortunes they engineered to make themselves rich (that'd be pretty much everyone else). In that event, you'd be amazed at how many "too big to fail" institutions could fail without it bothering the rest of us.

Of course, that isn't going to happen. A few words from around the blogosphere, starting with my own commenters:

Charles:

Yeah, a $700B slush fund could really do wonders for Republicans' prospects this November.

It is breathtaking in its arrogance: proposing to transfer the power of the purse from Congress to the Executive. If we had real courts and a Congress with historical memory, I would think it had no chance of enactment. I've written to my delegation.

earthhandstaplesthat:

I just read the sexy Three Page Trillion Dollar Slush Fund Proposal. It's so hot it doesn't even have a code name. Whew. It's one big slush fund. Who doesn't like war-sized slush funds? It's clearly a National Security issue so it's naturally a Star Wars size black budget op. That's the way they roll.

Paulson's proposal is not reasonable policy, given the size of the sums/people/agencies involved and the fox in hen house issues. No. But I don't mind that's it's just three pages. (And you don't need three pages just to outline a MIB-sized slush fund.) The Dems should propose a two page bill that provides $699 billion in relief directly to families. Smaller, cheaper, better, and just two pages.

David Bell:

If they want the taxpayer to bail out the financial industry, perhaps the executives should STFU when their tax bill is increased.

And that doesn't have to involve crazy 90% tax rates.

The way some of these financial institutions have been carrying on, shouldn't RICO apply?

Why, yes, David, if it should apply to anyone, it should certainly apply to the biggest gang of thieves and vandals in history.

CMike:

With all deference to the good professor, I think Krugman should be asking not "why [is this] supposed to work" but rather, what is it that Hank Paulson and Ben Bernanke are actually trying to accomplish. My answer to that question would be that our easy money Fed Chairman and our Goldman Sachs minted Treasury Secretary are trying to stampede the Congress into putting the budgetary authority for the United States government on a course to be taken over by the International Monetary Fund in the near future.

The IMF, those are the folks who are always about belt tightening when it comes to wasteful social programs; social programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. We are on the verge of the ultimate triumph for "The Shock Doctrine: The Rise [now the Apex] of Disaster Capitalism."

$29 billion at risk to underwrite the JPMorgan Chase takeover of Bear Stearns, $75 billion for AIG, now another $700 billion for playahs to be named later; we'd better leave all this high finance to the experts for a few more rounds. There is opportunity in crisis and don't our modern day titans of capitalism know it.

It won't be the fault of Florida or Ohio voting machines. It looks like a Democratic House and a Democratic Senate are going to pass this baby lickety-split. (With only sixty votes in the Senate required for absurdity to pass, no reason for any of us to think there will be any hold up there.)

Ouch.

Phoenix woman suggests some things to do today, including reading " Robert Reich explaining why there's no reason any taxpayer money should be spent on this - especially money offered up
without any oversight," and, of course, calling your Congresscritter. (It's not that I expect to be able to talk sense to people who are actually thinking seriously of giving Bush and Paulson what they want, it's just that I've always felt a moral obligation to try. I know a decade or so on the internet may have made you wonder if it's possible to change people's minds, but my experience is that, yes, you can. Not always. Not even most of the time. But it does happen.)

Mike Whitney looks at our full-spectrum breakdown and sees people Grasping at Straws:

The problems cannot be resolved by shifting the debts of the banks onto the taxpayer. That's an illusion. By adding another $1 or $2 trillion dollars to the National Debt, Paulson is just ensuring that interest rates will go up, real estate will crash, unemployment will soar, and foreign central banks will abandon the dollar. In truth, there is no fix for a deleveraging market anymore than there is a fix for gravity. The belief that massive debts and insolvency can be erased by increasing liquidity just shows a fundamental misunderstanding of economics. That's why Henry Paulson is the worst possible person to be orchestrating the so called rescue project. Paulson comes from a business culture which rewards deception, personal acquisitiveness, and extreme risk-taking. Paulson is to finance capitalism what Rumsfeld is to military strategy. His leadership, and the congress' pathetic abdication of responsibility, assures disaster. Besides, why should the taxpayers be happy that the stocks of Morgan Stanley, Washington Mutual and Goldman Sachs surged on the news that there would be a government bailout yesterday? These banks are essentially bankrupt and their business models are broken. Keeping insolvent banks on life support is not a rescue plan; it's insanity.

Gods, is he right about Paulson, who has said that not rewarding the thieves by letting them keep all the money is a poison pill to any plan - a curious approach, you might think.

A poison pill? The executives who drove their banks into insolvency won't let the government save their banks if it means they have to give up multi-million dollar golden parachutes? After they've been paying themselves millions a year for the sheer incompetence necessary to bankrupt their companies? Did we step through the mirror and I didn't notice?

I can only read this as Paulson saying that Republicans will stop any bill that reigns in executive compensation in exchange for a bailout. I cannot think of words sufficient to describe my contempt at the greed, selfishness and sheer hubris being displayed by Paulson, Republicans and the bankers who believe they can dictate that not only should Congress hand over 700 billion dollars, but it should do so with no meaningful conditions.

Don't leave out those Democrats who are responding to this with anything other than outrage and derision.

Or, as Arthur Silber put it:

There Is No Fix

That's the truth that almost no one will face about the economic unraveling: There is no fix. This is the fundamental reason I say that, with regard to their publicly proclaimed aims, no one knows what they're doing. They can't know what they're doing -- because, while everyone insists they are trying to "fix it," there is nothing to be done. And yet, everyone in Washington is desperately trying to "fix it" -- that is, they are attempting to avoid the inevitable consequences of an economy that has significantly and for a long time gone completely off the tracks. Many actions by many players must lead to certain results now. To rebuild on a solid foundation, the results must play out -- and they will play out, no matter what stop-gap measures are adopted -- and then and only then, a new structure can be erected.

Larisa Alexandrovna says, "Welcome to the final stages of the coup...."
Uh huh. I've been wishing all morning I could find that link to Teresa
Nielsen Hayden's 2000 Usenet post in rec.arts.sf.fandom explaining
exactly what she saw when Republican Congressional aides went to Miami
to stage a riot to prevent votes from being counted. This was an
astonishingly brazen act performed without ski masks by people who were
obviously part of a machine that did not expect ever to have to give up
power. It's ramifications were larger than even we imagined. Yes, we
knew we were looking at a heist, and it was obviously not just another
stolen election, but I don't think anyone realized it would, or could,
go this far.

Mr. Sideshow, without even reading any of that stuff, just mused from the kitchen while making his lunch:

One final, monstrous smash-and-grab raid on the treasury before they leave office.

Yes, I think so. They're not worried about the country.

Much more here and here and here. The only good news is that people are actually talking about this instead of about some missing white woman or whatever has taken Nancy Grace's fancy this week.

Like I say, you really should make the effort, if only to say you tried. Meanwhile, keep an eye on Eschaton, where Duncan (and others) will continue to help you connect the dots.

 

Blue Bunting (855)
Sunday September 21, 2008, 11:44 pm

Make your voice heard. Add your comments below. Write Senate Majority Leader
Harry Reid, House Speaker Nancy Pelosiand demand that they stand up. Write Senate Republican Leader Mike McConnelland House
Minority Leader John Boehnerand tell them that saluting the Bush administration is not sufficient. Tell the Committee Chairs Senator Chris Dodd and Rep. Barney Frankthat the Treasury proposal is unacceptable. Finance is too important to be left to the bankers. And the bailout is too costly to be left to the Bush
administration.

It's time for citizens to demand common sense.
 

Jim Phillips (3215)
Monday September 22, 2008, 1:13 am

I found this for Europe. Seems like they are doing much more than we, USA, are doing with our "Congresscritters". Here is the full text:

Eurosocialists Push for Comprehensive Regulation of Private Equity, Hedge Funds

The European Parliament is set to vote on a report on Tuesday, September 23, calling on the European Commission to introduce legislative proposals for comprehensive financial market reform before the end of the year. The report, spearheaded by former Danish Prime Minister Poul Nyrup Rasmussen, who also heads the Party of European Socialists (the EU-wide grouping of Social Democratic and Labour parties), sets out clear guidelines for closer regulation of private equity, hedge funds and financial markets as a whole in the European Union. The proposals for legislation address a number of key labour movement concerns, including: limitations on debt levels in leveraged buyouts; measures to contain asset stripping of portfolio companies by private equity owners; greater transparency and disclosure rules for private equity with far greater scope than the voluntary "Codes of Conduct" which have been promoted as alternatives to regulation; greater capital adequacy requirements for financial instruments and institutions (including private equity and hedge funds), limitations on the easy securitization of leveraged loans ("originate and distribute") which have fuelled both the buyout boom and the financial crisis generally; and ensuring that employees in private equity-owned companies exercise the same rights to information as other EU private-sector employees. Other initiatives in the report call for action and reforms on executive pay, credit rating agencies and conflicts of interest.

The report, first submitted in May, is the outcome of tough negotiations between the Eurosocialists and the conservative and liberal groups who form a majority in the Parliament. The IUF has been deeply involved in this initiative from its inception. Despite being a heavily amended compromise, legislative action along the specific guidelines set out in the report would represent a big step forward for workers. The European Commission is obliged to respond to the call for legislation and has always come forward with proposals in the past when requested to do so in this way by the Parliament.

The significance of this initiative extends beyond the EU, particularly at a time of acute financial crisis worldwide, because adoption of the report would signal the existence of a parliamentary consensus across party lines on the need for comprehensive regulatory action and financial market reform.

To highlight the need for action in the face of global financial meltdown, and to support the initiative, the online campaigning organization Avaaz has launched an electronic petition. Signatures will be presented by Rasmussen to Euro MPs and to the European Commission on Tuesday in connection with the report.

You can sign the online petition here:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/global_finance_action/
_______________

US needs a complete overhaul and reform of the markets, banks, mortgage and the like with regulations set and put into motion.

Please do write to your congress people ASAP. We must NOT allow the RAPE of our country and its citizens to continue anymore. Just think what would have happened if our Social Security had been in the markets as bush and his cronies had proposed a few years ago.


WAKE UP and DO something!
_______________

The line from the movie, "Network". "I'm Mad as Hell, and I'm Not Going to Take It Anymore".

LINK: http://de.youtube.com/watch?v=dib2-HBsF08&feature=related
_______________

Remind you of Faux News...

LINK: http://de.youtube.com/watch?v=MTN3s2iVKKI
_______________

ADDED LINK: Network - "There is no democracy" with [english subtitles]

http://de.youtube.com/watch?v=RzSj1yNZdY8&feature=related


Just think, the movie, Network, was made over 32 years ago in 1976. If you haven't seen this movie, it might be a good time to see it. For us "oldies", it might be well worth the effort to see this movie again.




 

CHRISTIAN RYAN (11)
Monday September 22, 2008, 1:32 am
AS DR WYNN PARKER SAID YESTERDAY THIS IS THE END OF AMERICA ON MONDAY AS WE KNOW IT" WHY ARE WE BAILING OUT FORIEGN BANKS ALSO?? GIVE OUR MONEY AWAY FROM OUR GRAND BABIES??? SCREW THAT CHRIS
 

CHRISTIAN RYAN (11)
Monday September 22, 2008, 1:38 am
AS I TOLD CATE WE HAVE NO BUSINESS BAILING OUT FORIEGN BANKS WHEN OUR OWN PEOPLE ARE GOING WITH OUT. BUSH IS A DAMN SHAM CHRIS
 

Tsandi Crew (95)
Monday September 22, 2008, 5:07 am
I agree with you, Cate....it's bull. Hopefully this will post on the right page.
 

Tsandi Crew (95)
Monday September 22, 2008, 5:18 am
Aha! it's fixed!

We would have no business bailing us out IF! it were investments as they used to be when they were regulated! People playing roulette on the Stock Market on Wall Street.

HOWEVER, since Mr. McCain and Company, deregulated everything they possibly could, the mess includes the money and useless paper mortgages are written on, the investments made by common insurance companies .....your life insurance, your home insurance, etc., and your 401K's, etc. IT includes the money from everything. That's why it's so bit, so much, and so widespread.

Those of us who have no 401Ks, no insurance, etc, are still paying to bail out the rest.

In the long run, bailing everyone out means not just bailing out the rich, but bailing out the middle class people who have any kind of savings for retirement. This is good because, if there is no one left with any money to spend whatsoever, those big guys fall down, too.

EXCEPT that there are people outside the United States who have money to spend. So, (am I getting into rambling?) if no one is left INSIDE the US with any money to spend on the products created by the large corporations, only people OUTSIDE the US with money to buy from the large corporations, it leaves our country wide open for foreign countries to come in and buy whatever they choose.

That includes China coming in to repossess our country, which has borrowed how much money? to fight the Iraq war . . . .

Consider the consequences if McCain is elected and the practice continues, which it will, of unregulated trading. . . .

So you see why we have to buy our country back? JOHN MCCAIN SOLD IT WITH DEREGULATION! HE IS THE DEREGULATOR!
 

Doug Wilson (30)
Monday September 22, 2008, 6:33 am
How about you take 7 or 8 hundred billion and give it to the "people" who have lost property. Let the corporations, if they are going to have the rights of people, suffer as people suffer. Its not even 'wool over the eyes' at this stage it's just blatant, in your face, what are you going to do about it, play ground politics. The silver lining is that in spite of all the stupidity displayed by government, as a people, we are blessed here and there with genius, ethics, inventiveness and genuine caring. These traits are growing in our species and as it is certain that the current system of corporate idiocy will fail, because of the qualities of we the people, the brightest days are ahead. The dumber, greedier and just downright slimier they get, the quicker it will be over.
 

Stephen Hannon (203)
Monday September 22, 2008, 11:38 am
Noted, thanks Cate, but we are already paying for this mess big time, and it's going to bankrupt us in the end. But we won't be able to get any relief in bankruptcy court because of the new laws BushCo had pushed through.

You really didn't think that Wall Street and the banks, insurance companies, and predatory mortgage lenders were actually going to pay for what they did? The joke is on us. I'm glad I don't have to pay federal income taxes. I don't earn enough with my retirement payments to have to pay the volunteer federal income tax. Even Social Security says this tax is voluntary, but try not paying it if you are employed or have a 401-K or IRA account. You will pay whether the law says you don't have to or not.

I asked a tax consultant what would happen if an individual did not agree on the W-4 Form where you voluntarily agree to allow the IRS to take taxes from your payroll check? He said they would just tax the most they could get. I said, "but that's illegal under the Sixteenth Amendment." He said it didn't matter what the Constitution says. Either you pay the federal income tax or you go to jail. You make the choice. So the gov. has been screwing us for more than half a century forcing us to pay what they say is a volunteer tax. And all of Congress knows this, yet they do nothing about it. They say they need the taxes to pay the interest on the loans to the Fed. I didn't make any loans with the Feds, and I did not authorize the Feds to make loans to the federal government, so why should I have to pay. Tell this to a federal jugdg and he will say it's irrevellent. But is it really?
 

Susan Edwards (6)
Monday September 22, 2008, 12:01 pm
God help...I mean bless America.
 

Carol W. (119)
Monday September 22, 2008, 12:39 pm
I guess we all have known it would play out since the 911 scam, we just had no idea how they were playing us.

So many Americans are completely hood-winked, dumbed down, & self absorbed in righteousness that it boggles the mind.

A lady handing out Palin bumper stickers was telling me how wonderful McCain is and all his many years of accomplishments. (say what?)

How can people willingly be so ignorant? Horrified, it made me realize his lies and cliches are working. Call it more 'blind faith'. grrrr

Write letters as Blue suggest. Please at least let the minions (us) be recognized.


 

Marcla G. (108)
Monday September 22, 2008, 3:18 pm
From Mike Adams over at Natural News.
..Oh, and by the way, just in case you thought it all wasn't crazy enough already, a U.K. newspaper (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/busin...) is now reporting that the top people at the now-failed Lehman Brothers will share a $2.5 billion bonus that was set aside before the investment house filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

How do you like that? A few billion in bonuses for the people who created a mountain of bad debt for the taxpayers! Think about that the next time you're punching the clock at your nine-to-five.

Friends, we almost witnessed the financial demise of the global banking system. But thanks to timely intervention, what we witnessed instead was a global financial swindle so grand, it's one for the history books. That giant sucking sound you heard was a financial vacuum pulling dollars out of YOUR bank accounts, and depositing them directly into the accounts of the very people who caused this problem: Rich bankers, greedy derivatives traders and economically-illiterate politicians who think debt doesn't matter and money is free.

This was all orchestrated by the greatest money thieves of all time: The Federal Reserve and your own government. No con artist in human history has even approached the scope of the swindle that just happened right before our eyes, in full view of the press, the public and the politicians.

"Give me control of a nation's money supply, and I care not who makes its laws."
-- Mayer Amschel Rothschild....

the whole article is here.... http://www.naturalnews.com/024276.html
It is amazing, especially after reading that tidbit of the 2.5 million dollar bonus...I kind of feel like the cartoon character that just got hit over the head with the acme anvil dropped off the cliff.
 

Blue Bunting (855)
Monday September 22, 2008, 3:54 pm
Has anyone seen any mention of the infamous Section 8 of the Paulson Bailout Plan mentioned in any major media outlet?

Here's the textjust as a reminder:


Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.

It is critical that this gain traction this week. Write every outlet you can think of to cover this massive power grab. And if you see any mention of it, please note it in the comment thread.

Well, at least Jack Balkin is paying attention. It's a must read.

Write you your House Representative, here. Write to your Senator here.

Update: Ian notes that Obama seems to have drawn a line in the sand: NO DEAL! Although I must note, after reading Obama's remarks, I don't see anything about Section 8 or legal oversight in them AT ALL. And that is disturbing. Here are the key points:

First, there must be no blank check when American taxpayers are on the hook for this much money.

Second, taxpayers shouldn't be spending a dime to reward CEOs on Wall Street.

Third, taxpayers should be protected and should be able to recoup this investment.

Fourth, this plan has to help homeowners stay in their homes.

Notice anything missing?

Update 2: Lambert points out that McClatchy is on the case.
 

Ken S. (38)
Monday September 22, 2008, 4:55 pm
We live in uncertain times......

I am absolutely amazed to see pictures of tent cities in your "land of the free".

...What about bailing out these people and their families.???? Charity begins at home!!!!!! in other words help should be given to the NEEDY not the GREEDY.

Do you have a democracy????

Your process for elections is patently corrupt.....the process is BROKEN....the media is NOT impartial...the accountability of your President and congress is very nearly nil, it is all show.....your elected representatives and their friends are raping and pillaging the public purse, with impunity.......there is little integrity and honesty in government.
...domestic and international policy: if the US was a third world country, would bring cries of dismay and incredulity, resulting in international condemnation....no democracy could wage a war, spilling your young peoples blood, without due democratic process....only dictatorships do this.......fiscal planning and implementation and accountability: looks like a petulant primary school child is in charge.....it is evident that confidence, within the international community in the US and the $US has fallen to a point where even your government is planning to bail out to the Amero .... it is disturbing to see that the US is hated and distrusted in increasing areas of the world .....your law enforcement departments sends the school bullies to heavy you if you wish to exercise your constitutional rights of free speech and assembly.....and you can be jailed or worse......

Your Democracy, and the country you love is in a BAD way. Bring back J F K.....
"Do not ask what your country do for you, ask what you can do for your country"

I hear reports where your military will be used to control, with orders to shoot, if things get bad....and that there are concentration camps.....Please someone tell me this is wrong.....this just CANNOT be right.........if this is a democracy....or this would be the final nail in the coffin of your democracy....

Why aren't your jails full of government officials, corrupt contractors/corporation CEO's and elected officials.....there are so many of the B**tards that are patently guilty as sin.....is there no accountability...has the justice system been so compromised OR CORRUPTED ?? ????
This just would not happen in the vast majority of democracies in the world....

Will care2 consider investigating and starting a program to help those in these tent cities in the US???? they surely need it......urgently

Is the information I have gained on the 'net and the media CORRECT......or have I got it wrong????

 

Good H. (3827)
Monday September 22, 2008, 8:51 pm
First, McCain was against bailing out AIG... that is Conservative values for sure.

The next day, McCain was FOR bailing out AIG.. that is liberal values for sure. I think that is a record for the fastest flip flop ever, or did someone do it faster? I think he should get an award for that.

What is a bailout called when the government buys out the controlling interest in a private corporation, and replaces the CEO with their own hand picked person who is under their control?

How can Conservatives and Liberals agree that Communism is now needed, when we have been fighting it for generations? The definition of Communism is government controlled enterprises.. right? Read it for yourself...

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/communism

If we are going to become loyal Communists, and our best friends with most favored trading nation status is Communist China, why not go all the way, and take over all of the biggest corporations, starting with the OIL companies? Start by distributing checks to all Americans as they do oil 'royalties' checks in Alaska, out of the profits from all of these companies that the Communist government is taking over, including Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and all the rest?


If it works for Alaskans, and for Saudi Arabia, why not for the rest of us? It seems we are going to live under an authoritarian government controlled by corporations, which tries to shove solutions down everyones throat under threat of total collapse if we do not take the deal. It seems we are going to live under an authoritarian government that does not debate issues or talk about issues of any substance. The least we can do is nationalize these corporations that the government is bailing out on our behalf., In return, the least these corporations can do is hand out money in return for us bailing them out of their mess.
 

Denice G. (45)
Tuesday September 23, 2008, 8:47 pm
All I can say is HELP!!!!!!
 

Blue Bunting (855)
Wednesday September 24, 2008, 6:27 pm
LOOK COLSELY at Paul$on's firm:

Why did Paul$on'$ firm: Goldman $ach$ survive???

The Long and Short of It at Goldman Sachs

Goldman Sachs sold hundreds of Billions in subprime/CDO's and shorted them at the same time.


A new analysis by Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. finds that “Wall Street banks, brokerages and hedge funds may report $460 billion in credit losses from the collapse of the subprime mortgage market, or almost four times the amount already disclosed.”

The degradation of accounting The folly of fair value accounting, which helped to drive up executive bonuses based on illusory values, is increasingly exposed by the US financial crisis. Goldman Sachs now has "assets" for which no market exists valued at twice the firm's capital. That route leads to insolvency.

 

Blue Bunting (855)
Wednesday September 24, 2008, 7:01 pm
There is no doubt in my mind, where Paulson´s loyalties lie. He is
pushing for the plan as Bush was pushing for the Iraq war. By using
politics of fear the ultimate scare tactics they always use. And in my mind there is no doubt about his loyalties either. He needs a job come January and where would that be for a banker?
The price tag for his plans? Much, much more than $700 Billion.
 

Blue Bunting (855)
Wednesday September 24, 2008, 10:57 pm
Timing ...

naked capitalism: On the dishonest sale of the bailout plan

Yes ... the Bu$hie$ were sitting on this plan; waiting for the right opportunity ... 41 days before ELECTION DAY.
 

Blue Bunting (855)
Sunday February 1, 2009, 11:00 am

Bailout Banks Gave The Finger To The AMerican Taxpayers


Banks collecting billions of dollars in federal bailout money sought
government permission to bring thousands of foreign workers to the U.S. for high-paying jobs, according to an Associated Press review of visa applications.


-----

Yes, the corporate class has no discernible loyalties to our nation, other than knowing where to go for a handout.

 
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