Monday, January 26, 2009

Banks, need therefore

Last year Bush and Congress decided that banks were so important to the national economy as to deserve $750 billion "Troubled Assets Recovery Program" (TARP for short) to bail them out. So far, we taxpayers have given out half of that ($350 billion) to banks. The banks have put the money into the vault, to make themselves look solvent as their piles of mortgage backed securities, credit default swaps, and other dodgy paper have steadily lost value. They haven't been lending it much.
If we really want want money lent out, let's authorize the Fed to directly lend money to US corporations. The commercial banks are shot. They are loosing money as their trash securities fall in price faster than Uncle Sam can pour taxpayer money into them. Why bother to bail out Citi's bad investments. Bypass the banks, and lend taxpayer money directly to US companies that need it. Let the banks sink or swim.

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