rising concerns over the wall street bailout

According to research done by reporters with the UK newspaper “The Guardian,” despite the uproar in our country over executive bonuses being paid as part of the $700 billion financial bailout package recently passed by the U.S. Congress on behalf of Wall Street firms, and the assurances of our elected officials that this wouldn’t happen, approximately 10% of that amount, or $70 billion, will be spent on pay and bonuses. Armed with this information, Congressman Dennis Kucinich has called for a federal probe. In a statement made to the progressive website The Raw Story, Kucinich said:

…When Congress placed restrictions on excessive executive pay, it had no intention of permitting business as usual with respect to bonus structures… It would add insult to injury to ask taxpayers not only to bailout a firm, but to pay for bonuses as well. The Guardian’s report necessitates an immediate inquiry…

And Kucinich isn’t the only person finding that the bailout in practice isn’t exactly what was promised. As was noted today on billionaire Mark Cuban’s newly launched bailout monitoring site Bailout Sleuth, despite the Treasury’s promise of transparency, they’re already withholding information as to how much firms are receiving and for what purposes specifically they’re receiving it.

It would seem that, despite the efforts of many to guard against secrecy and the payout of executive bonuses, that both are already happening.

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10 Comments

  1. Brackache
    Posted October 20, 2008 at 10:59 pm | Permalink

    Wah-waaaah.

  2. Brackache
    Posted October 20, 2008 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Dingell, Levin, McCain, Obama, and Bush, might I add –with stereotypically sardonic libertarian aloofness.

  3. Paw
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    Why in the world would the Treasury find it necessary to black-out sections of the documents they’re releasing? Are they arguing that it’s somehow related to national security? Or are they just afraid that one bank will see that another bank got more favorable terms? Either way it’s bullshit.

  4. Brackache
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    Yup. It’s a lot easier to stop that bullshit ahead of time by voting “no” on a huge wordy bill you don’t really understand, like the constituants flooding your email box tell you to.

    Stabenow had the balls to vote “no,” why didn’t Dingell, Levin, Obama, and McCain?

    Because they’re Wallstreet’s bitches for one, and generally any Bill that increases Government power is approved by power hungry people, regardless of their rhetoric or political party.

    Hear me now and believe me later.

  5. Curt Waugh
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    ALL surveys said that the people didn’t want this bill. ALL of them. But the bitches in power decided that we don’t know shit and did it anyway. 90-some percent of those politicians will be re-elected in two weeks.

    Congress is the seat of power in the U.S. government and congress is a goddamn mess. Many of you asked me in a prior post why I’m not voting in this election. This is why. Our voices have not been heard on Iraq. They haven’t been heard on the bail-out. Game over, man.

  6. Meta
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    According to today’s New York Times, the banks, even with our money, may not lend:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/21/business/21sorkin.html?dlbk

    Despite signs that the credit markets may be thawing, don’t expect banks to start handing out loans to Main Street — at least not to anyone who needs them, Andrew Ross Sorkin says in his latest DealBook column in The New York Times.

    The dirty little secret of Henry M. Paulson’s $250 billion give-away to nine U.S. banks, Mr. Sorkin says, is that those banks are doing exactly what everyone else is doing with their cash these days: sitting on it.

    “It doesn’t matter how much Hank Paulson gives us,” an influential senior official at a big bank that received money from the government told Mr. Sorkin. “No one is going to lend a nickel until the economy
    turns.”

  7. egpenet
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    The worst case scenario is that every $1 of cash in the US economy (private and governmental) is leveraged 350% … meaning that each US dollar has been loaned out 350 times over.

    What we are preparing for – by propping up the few major banks that are left, plus a few regional banks, which may have to merge in the next few weeks anyway – is a massive deleveraging of that debt – some of which will turn out to be worthless, some OK (small profits), and, quite possibly, some quite good (very profitable), which will help pay back the government loans/stock purchases.

    At the same time, hedge funds, money markets, credit card industry and corporations are beginning to deleverage by bankrupting, closing their doors, writing off, showing poor earnings/losses, and otherwise taking their lumps in the market, which has MUCH further to go before it bottoms.

    On the SUNNY SIDE … there’s LOTS of cash … but those who have it ARE waiting … waiting for the Fed and other central banks to slash interest rates to 1% or 0.5% so the rest of us can deleverage (cut debt) by the same methods (renegotiating, refinancing, bankruptcy, moving to Costa Rica (joke), etc.)

    In short … DEflate the banks and corporations with cash… then INflate the masses with new credit … and hopefully get the lending machine going again to regain some credible balance between the two … BUT AVOID RUNAWAY INFLATION. That’s the trick.

    This is just not happening here, but in every country of the world EXCEPT Japan (they did this already, but it took them over ten yearsto get it done right) … even Switzerland is nationalizing its debts!

    When the central banks turn on the money supply for Main Street (you and me) … it will be something to watch!

    The smart money is now just beginning to buy back into agricultural and chemical commodities and gold, which are falling because people are selling oil futures and gold to pay debts and meet obligations.

    The “smart” money has been buying gold as it falls, knowing that when (not if) inflation hits and likely skyrockets for a time, gold will certainly hit $1000 or even $2000 an ounce, and oil will jump again, as well, before equilibrium hits and the FED has to slams the credit vaults shut by raising rates.

    What a game! Not only is the November election “generational” as the General said. So are these markets generational. Make some popcorn, melt some butter and pass the salt. It’s a much slower game than football, but it beats watching Michigan or the Lions.

  8. Oliva
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

    Call me a party-pooper, egpenet. Maybe skip the butter and salt so as to live long enough to be here when . . .

    when some fantastic human beings help lead us out of this mess, thinking up a new economic system, helping us become our better selves, and delivering us from evil, amen.

  9. Oliva
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Quick p.s., egpenet: sea salt and a bit of butter?! (I went a little overboard on the austerity-and-unclog-arteries train. Not to mention the awaiting-a-leader talk. There’s always Costa Rica.)

  10. egpenet
    Posted October 21, 2008 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

    OK … for YOU … sea salt and NO butter. JUST for YOU.

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