Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Who Says a Live of Crime Doesn't Pay?

As President Bush defends the US Treasury's decision to guarantee $306 billion of Citigroup's troubled mortgages and toxic assets, in addition to the $20 billion, which escalates the total cost of this "rescue" to $7.76 trillion, one has to wonder about the "reality" of the structure that underlies our monetary system. Does it even exist? Or, have the last few decades of "free market" and "dereg" politics wiped it out entirely, leaving only a verisimilitude of architecture in its place?

What can we do about it? How can we begin to figure out what needs to be done or what's going on, when most of us, afflicted by nausea and whiplash from the 401k roller coaster, must find the time to sort out information flying at us like a thousand bats straight out of hell? It's impossible. Nevertheless, as detrimental as this cyclone of fiscal "intelligence" is for us, it seems very convenient for the powers that be. After all, confusion, panic, and mayhem provide the perfect cover for all sorts of illicit activity...the kind of activity this administration thrives on to fulfill its agenda.

When you consider that the role of the Federal Reserve and the Treasury is to prevent panic, keep order, and instill calm into the markets, it's disturbing to to think back on Henry Paulson's frantic message. As Terry Gross asked one of her economist guests, "How did the situation go from the Secretary of the Treasury telling us everything is under control to...you have to pass this bill immediately, or else the whole system is going to crash, there is no time to think about it, there is no time to debate. Stop asking for changes. You've got to do it right now."

Paulson tells us that this is an investment, not expenditure, and that we the taxpayers should earn a rate of return eventually. However, we're investing our money in bankrupt institutions without any knowledge of the type of collateral that borrowing banks are offering, and the Federal Reserve will not disclose that information. Moreover, what about all the money the government is pledging? Take Citigroup. We are "loaning" $20 billion to this bank, but we're guaranteeing over $300 billion...so, which part of that money do we have the potential to earn a return?

The "banking system" as a whole is protected. What is not protected is the U.S. taxpayer, and the purchasing power of the dollar when the According to the Congressional Budget Office, the government's pledge will cost every man, woman and child in the country, $24,000. Do you think the banksters care?

Several of the highest-paid college presidents said that they would give back part of their pay or forgo their raises, meanwhile, back at bailout central, the bankers and CEOs...the ones who put our entire economy at risk and who will collect billions of our dollars, show no significant changes in how they pay top executives except Goldman Sachs. However, even Goldman Sachs still plans to pay its more than 400 partners bonuses averaging $4.5 million.

Breakdown of the U.S. government's rescue efforts.

Question to ponder:
How does the North American Union factor into this, if at all?


Anonymous,  20:28  

You have to understand that the reason the Fed does not want to disclose information is because they do not want to set off a panic. The last thing the government should do is expose the true value of the exotic assets as there is no doubt that they are much less than what has been reported. That would be counterproductive.

Otherwise, I pretty much agree with what you wrote.

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