Hey guys. Here's a ton of money with no strings attached. You'll use it for the good of the country right...right?
Hey guys. Here's a ton of money with no strings attached. You'll use it for the good of the country right...right? Auditors fault Treasury policing of bailout funds.
"In the first comprehensive review of the rescue package, the Government Accountability Office said Tuesday that the Treasury Department has no mechanisms to ensure that banking institutions limit their top executives' pay and comply with other restrictions."
Few things are more annoying than watching Paulson and friends rain money down on banks only to read in the headlines that they are using it for all sorts of things other than lending to U.S. consumers and businesses. Like these gems for instance:
Bank of America Raises Stake in China Construction Bank. Let me get this straight, the U.S. government gives you money to make sure that credit flows freely in this country and immediately after you use $7 BILLION to double your stake in a Chinese bank?!?!
or this one
Citi fund buying Spanish highways for $10 billion. Uh hello? In addition to the TARP money, didn't the government just have to come in a week ago and bail out Citi by guaranteeing $306 billion worth of bad investments that it has made in the past?!?!?!
These are just two examples that I thought of off of the top of my head without looking around at all. I'm sure that anyone who does any digging will be able to find tons more. Of course, it doesn't even mention the millions in bonuses that many companies are paying to the management who ran them into the ground. What's that? This isn't the money that the government gave these companies? This is other money. Right...
The government should be hammering on these banks and completely forcing them to loan all of the money that they are being handed on a silver platter out to U.S. consumers and businesses or to give it back. They shouldn't be allowed to use it to de-lever their balance sheets, make acquisitions (all of this consolidation is only creating more institutions that are "too big to fail"), or worse yet to invest outside of the country. This is nuts. Do Paulson and his minions like Neel Kashkari have an sense at all, or are they really just using the money to line their friends' pockets?
At least someone in the government is calling them out on this. The GAO is one of three watchdogs that Congress appounted when it approved the $700 billion TARP package. It also created a special inspector general's office to make sure that the money is being used appropriately, but the veteran federal prosecutor Neil M. Barofsky who was nominated for the position is being blocked for some reason by an anonymous Senator. Are you kidding me? Stop screwing around and get someone in that position ASAP. I don't know anything about Barfkowski, but how bad could he be? He's got to be better than haing no oversight whatsoever.