Saturday, May 9, 2009

This Can't Be Good

This fairly lengthy, but highly recommended, article is just one of many that I've been reading which makes me uneasy about the course of our so-called "recovery." Written by a former IMF official who's had lots of experience with bankrupt countries coming to the fund for rescue, the article simply confirms for me what I truly believe to be so in my heart of hearts. That is, that we the American people are being taken for a ride on this whole bailout and recovery plan. As far as I'm concerned it takes not a genius to put two and two together here and conclude that any plan which basically focuses on saving at all costs, and that is to be understood literally, the sector of our economy--the financial sector--that is primarily to blame for our current catastrophe cannot be the correct one. Further, the plan is in no way, has not the slightest whiff of, punitive on the malefactors of great wealth on Wall Street and in banking. The arrogance of these people has them spending millions of dollars that have been provided by the taxpayers to (among other things inimical to the public interest) lobby Congress against legislation to provide relief for people struggling to pay their mortgages--and succeeding, I might add. In other words, using our money to fight against our interests.

Something smells really fishy to me when Timothy Geitner is appearing on every other talk and news show on TV, talking about how the recent "stress tests" done on the banks was a vital and true test of their solidity. And going to great pains to underscore how much more expensive it would be to nationalize banks and sequester their huge losses. The bottom line here is we the taxpayers are bearing all the pain of this recession, and, I suspect, are still being thoroughly screwed in the process of "recovery." The people who are doing the best are . . . you guessed it, the banks. And the administration people who are supposedly helping secure our interests against the banks are all from the world of finance. What is wrong with this picture? Does this begin to look fishy to you, too?

The man from the IMF contends the US economy looks exactly like some of the previous pauper countries that came to the IMF for help: Korea, Malaysia, Russia, Argentina. With the additional disturbing trait that financiers "are now using their influence to prevent precisely the sorts of reforms that are needed, and fast, to pull the economy out of its nosedive. The government seems helpless, or unwilling, to act against them." In other words, the Wall St fat cats are still calling the shots--with impunity.

To survive something that may end up even worse than the Great Depression, not only does a much tougher line be taken with the banks, but the entrenched oligarchy that's calling the shots has to be busted up. What do you think the chances of this happening are? We ought to just face up to the fact that we're at the mercy of people that don't give a rat's ass about the rest of us . . . this can't be good. Paul Krugman says that we all ought to be "very afraid."
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