Monday, September 29, 2008

Is This A Stick-Up?

I was reading The Huffington Post, and came across an interesting article on the proposed financial bailout plan by Dean Baker.
Here are a few excerpts:

At this point I cannot identify a single good reason to do the bailout.

The basic argument for the bailout is that the banks are filled with so much bad debt that the banks can't trust each other to repay loans. This creates a situation in which the system of payments breaks down. That would mean that we cannot use our ATMs or credit cards or cash checks.

That is a very frightening scenario, but this is not where things end. The Federal Reserve Board would surely step in and take over the major money center banks so that the system of payments would begin functioning again. The Fed was prepared to take over the major banks back in the 80s when bad debt to developing countries threatened to make them insolvent. It is inconceivable that it has not made similar preparations in the current crisis.

In other words, the worst case scenario is that we have an extremely scary day in which the markets freeze for a few hours. Then the Fed steps in and takes over the major banks. The system of payments continues to operate exactly as before, but the bank executives are out of their jobs and the bank shareholders have likely lost most of their money. In other words, the banks have a gun pointed to their heads and are threatening to pull the trigger unless we hand them $700 billion.

Read the full article at The Huffington Post

We have been inundated with information as to why we have to bailout these financial institutions, but if we give them our money (for their fuck-ups), we'll have even less. I don't want to suffer so some corrupt bank executive can keep his/her cushy job. To be honest, I don't know what to hope for at this point.

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