Archive for ‘Treasury’

July 26, 2009

Geithner and the Scapegoat Sweepstakes

Thanks to Smitty for watchdogging the latest headlines about SIGTARP Neil Barofsky while I was on the road to Richmond yesterday. It’s important to see the big picture in this battle between Barofsky and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner:

The Wall Street bailout has been unpopular from its inception. . . . Now, we see unemployment soaring (more than 15% in Michigan, near 12% in California) and consumer confidence falling, while the stock market surges upward. You can’t blame people for suspecting that massive taxpayer-funded assistance to financial giants like AIG, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America might have something to do with this widening chasm between prosperity on Wall Street and misery on Main Street. . . .
Polls indicate a growing perception that the Obama administration is mismanaging the economy, with special favors for politically connected Wall Street fat cats at the expense of ordinary American taxpayers. . . .
With another approaching crisis in banking and forecasts that unemployment will continue rising for months to come, Obama will eventually start looking for a scapegoat. Though once hailed as an economic savior, the nominee who was “too big to fail,” Geithner is now odds-on favorite to win the Scapegoat Sweepstakes. SIGTARP Barofsky’s watchdogging of the bailout “black hole” may be enough to push Geithner across the finish line.

Read the whole thing, which includes a “document dump” with Barofsky’s quarterly IG report and other important documents on this important aspect of IG-Gate.

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July 22, 2009

‘Transparency’ Looks a Lot Like Hell

At least for George Madison, nominated by President Obama to be general counsel for the Department of the Treasury, which means a hearing tomorrow morning with the Senate Finance Committee. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has a few questions for the luckless bastard . . .

July 20, 2009

SIGTARP Strikes: IG Barofsky Report SaysTreasury Not Tracking Bailout Cash

The watchdog bites Tim Geithner:

The top watchdog over the financial bailout package said the Treasury Department is rejecting “common sense” by not requiring banks receiving billions of dollars in government money to say how they are using the money.
In a report to be released on Monday, Neil Barofsky said banks that have received money from the $700 billion bailout package passed last year are able to indicate how they are using taxpayer money and that Treasury should require banks to be more transparent. . . .
Barofsky is the Special Inspector General over the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP) that was passed by Congress in October. . . .

Read the whole thing. This SIGTARP report is a perfect example of why the Obama adminstration hates IGs. The Democrats just want to shovel money out the door and don’t care who gets it, except to be sure their well-connected friends get their share.

According to the liberal neo-Keynesian economic gospel, as long as the federal government does X-billion dollars of deficit spending, that will produce X-plus-Y amount of stimulus value (where Y = Magic Government Spending Multiplier Effect) without regard to whether the money ends up feeding orphans or supplying the mistresses of Goldman Sachs executives with bustiers and garter belts

Unfortunately for liberals, the stupid taxpayers can never seem to comprehend the nuances of neo-Keynesian theory the way Nobel Prize-winning genius Paul Krugman does.

No matter how many times they’re lectured about this “stimulus”/bailout brilliance, the idiots who pay the taxes get a little miffed to discover that their great-grandchildren’s future has been hocked to pay for new wallpaper and wainscoting in the executive lavatory of a giant banking conglomerate which — as every expert in Washington explained last fall — was so frantically in need of cash that the branch managers were sending tellers to sell plasma to the blood bank, merely to prevent a complete catastrophic meltdown in the global finance system.

Those stupid taxpayers are like that. They have a habit of remembering irrelevant minor details like those 90-point headlines on the front pages of all the newspapers:

CRISIS LOOMS: WORLD ECONOMY TEETERS ON BRINK OF FINAL APOCALYPSE; CONGRESS DESPERATELY FIGHTS TO AVERT ECONOMIC DOOMSDAY; PLAGUES OF LOCUSTS, FROGS FEARED

Damned idiot taxpayers. What do they know about economics and budgets and stuff that only people with Ivy League Ph.Ds can ever hope to understand?

(H/T: Memeorandum.)