Why won't Hank Paulson come clean on who got two trillion, and why?
Bloomberg has filed FOIA requests to find out who Hank Paulson has given two trillion* in emergency loans to, and what collateral he accepted. (This is a separate program from the Bush + Reid + Paulson + Obama + Paulson bailout bill, where accountability is also non-existent.) Here's how the Fed responded to one request:
``I have confirmed that the information you seek is confidential commercial information,'' Federal Reserve Governor Kevin Warsh said in the letter. ``The information at issue contains confidential commercial business information regarding securities pledged as collateral in connection with JPMCs acquisition of Bear Stearns.''
I'll bet. And here's how non-Villagers react to that:
``This constitutes exactly the scenario which landed these banks in their dilemma in the first place. The Fed is making sub- prime loans to these banks and taking their portfolio of sub- prime loans as collateral,'' said William Nein, an accountant from Woodland Park, Colorado, in an e-mail to Bloomberg. ``Where and when does this stop?''
``Our government officials never seem to be held accountable for their actions and the American taxpayers are always the ones to pay the price,'' said Kathy Cunningham, a legal secretary in San Angelo, Texas.
Not knowing which banks are in trouble shuts down the entire credit market said Joseph Mason, a banking professor at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge.
``If you don't know where the losses are, it's rational to pull back from the whole system,'' Mason said. ``I've heard the argument that government shouldn't pick winners or losers. Duh. That's what bank examiners and regulators do. Tell us where the losses are and there won't be a panic.''
``There's a lot of mistrust and they make it worse by sayng give us trillions and we'll have closed-door meetings and you just trust us to do what's best,'' said Dawn Klein of Feltz WealthPLAN, an investment management firm in Omaha, Nebraska.
``I absolutely do not trust them. Who's doing anything to establish trust, to get our trust back?''
This is not a Republican problem. This is not a Democrat problem. This is a Village problem.
What are they going to do about it? What can they do about it?
And can the people who are losing their homes turn themselves into banks so they can get some help?
NOTE I understand the argument that disclosure of who's getting what and why would put additional pressure on the recipients of Hank's largesse, to put it mildly. However, at some point, we really do have to know how Big the Big Shitpile is. Otherwise, we're just pouring money into a bucket that's got a hole in the bottom.
NOTE * The world GDP is $42 trillion, give or take, so two trillion is about 1/20 of that. It's a big, big number, and a lot of money for one guy to be throwing around with no oversight at all.