Friday, June 10, 2016

House passes Puerto Rico bill.

The Hill, usually a pretty good source, is fairly clueless on this one.  They give a good discussion of the back and forth tugging to pass it.  Nothing about what's in it.  They give one brief quote from Paul Ryan to the effect that there is no taxpayer money going to Puerto Rico, but that's it.  I hope that's true.   There was talk a few weeks ago, about setting up a special board/commission/bureau in Washington to supervise Puerto Rico's government and it's spending habits.  The Hill didn't say anything about that.
   Such a bill ought to offer Puerto Rico protection for law suits while a bankruptcy court sorts out the island's finances.  Without the customary protection from lawsuits, Puerto Rico and the courts would be swamped as every lender and every supplier, and every union, and every body else sues Puerto Rico for the money they think they are due.  You gotta shut all that off to get any where.
   Was I the bankruptcy judge, with full powers, I would tell the lenders to suck it up.  It's been obvious to anyone for the past 20 years that Puerto Rico had no way, and never would have a way. to repay the loans.  For making dumb loans, the lenders deserve to loose.  I'd  review all the island pensions, and chop them back to barely enough to live on.  I'd  review the government payroll, I understand that a third of the island's residents are on it, and lay off a lot of 'em.  I'd shake up the island's tax collection department and drive them to collect all the taxes owed, by everyone. 

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