Thursday, November 13, 2008

Bailout Mania!

In the wake of the Wall Street bailout which now is reaching $3 trillion dollars in bailout and loans (not just the $700 billion as was o.k'd by Congress), other industries, and even cities like Phoenix are coming to Washington with their hand out to ask for "help".

This from Marketwatch:
The U.S. automakers have asked for $25 billion in federal loans to cover operating expenses, according to a Nov. 10 letter from GM to Congress.
The United Auto Workers has said it wants $25 billion to help fund the union- run retiree health-care trusts being started in 2010.
GM claims they will go bankrupt or have to lay off workers if they don't get an infusion of cash.
Well... Good ...
Serves the unions right for bankrupting the industry to begin with, and for Congress supporting them. Maybe instead of bailing out GM they ought to ask the Unions for some major concessions. Why should the American public fund the Unions to keep these automakers afloat? Let the Unions take a hit instead of the taxpayer.

Then the credit card companies and airlines and heaven knows who else will be in the halls of Congress asking for money. This is becoming an unstoppable freight train.

Everyone all of a sudden is too big to fail. I say hogwash. Let them all fail and be forced to restructure the entire mess instead of rewarding bad business models and wasteful business spending, and incredibly poor management.

But what about all of the people put out of work? Well, I'd rather see the government give them unemployment money until they get rehired by a restructured company then have the company stay in business and continue failing practices with a bailout.

Government financing of bad business practices is the hallmark of Socialism and Communism. That's why those models fail. Risks are essentially eradicated and poor and wasteful business practices are rewarded and allowed to continue.

Money is flying all over the place in Washington and the printing presses are full steam ahead. One can only figure that this was the reason in March 2006 that the Fed discontinued publishing M3 figures (money supply) - and now we, the public, have no idea how much money is in circulation. That is important because more money in circulation pretty much is a signal to inflation. Well at the rate we are going you can pretty much guess that we are following the playbook to "Weimar Republic-like" hyper-inflation; you know where people had to carry wheelbarrows of money to the store to buy bread. This happens when the government has uncontrollable spending and dumps huge amounts of money into the economy. Perhaps this is why the banks have been reluctant to loan out/use the money that the Feds have "persuaded" them to take. These bankers probably know what's in store.

That coupled with the Fed not being forthcoming as to how and where the bailout money is being spent is a travesty to the American taxpaying public. The lack of transparency by the Fed and our Treasury Secretary is quite stunning. Congress, however, gave the Treasury Secretary unprecedented powers in that regard - with no accountability and no guarantees. Apparently, it's not YOUR Business to know where your tax dollars are going!

And talk about bait and switch policies!

The Treasury Secretary announced a change in plans for the $700 billion bailout bonanza. Remember it was originally sold to the public, and Congress, as a plan to purchase bad/toxic assets, now Secretary Paulson wants to use part of the bailout funding to "support financial markets" to help shore up credit which fuels credit card debt and auto loans and student loans. Everyone and his brother now wants to become a "bank holding company" like American Express. $250 billion of the fund will be used to purchase stock in banks. I thought I might become a bank and change the name of my blog to "COTG Express" or "COTGovia" in the hopes of cashing in on this gravy train. So send me your deposits right away! (Smile) I can sit on the funds and give myself big bonuses as well as the next bank or credit institution!

But seriously, here is the form you can fill out for some Troubled Asset Recvery Program (TARP) money.

Money News shows who got promised what from the $700 Billion bailout money.

But the overall rundown thus far:
$170 billion that the Treasury Department has currently agreed to provide banks in additional capital
$150 billion that the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve are providing to AIG
$2 trillion that the Federal Reserve has provided banks in emergency loans

Total help/bailout is approximately $2.32+ trillion including loans.

Then of course there was the Treasury Department's $200 billion in support for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the Federal Housing Administration's $300 billion HOPE for Homeowners program.

and on and on and on...

Meanwhile, the Stock Market continues to take a nose dive. 401 K's are now "101 K's" and Gold and Gun Sales are up...