Two interesting pieces of news broke wide open today. It seems the Bush Administration is robbing us blind. Check this out!
The Federal Reserve is refusing to identify the recipients of almost $2 trillion of emergency loans from American taxpayers or the troubled assets the central bank is accepting as collateral.
Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said in September they would comply with congressional demands for transparency in a $700 billion bailout of the banking system. Two months later, as the Fed lends far more than that in separate rescue programs that didn’t require approval by Congress, Americans have no idea where their money is going or what securities the banks are pledging in return.
Think that is bad? You ain’t seen NOTHING yet!
The financial world was fixated on Capitol Hill as Congress battled over the Bush administration’s request for a $700 billion bailout of the banking industry. In the midst of this late-September drama, the Treasury Department issued a five-sentence notice that attracted almost no public attention.
But corporate tax lawyers quickly realized the enormous implications of the document: Administration officials had just given American banks a windfall of as much as $140 billion.
The sweeping change to two decades of tax policy escaped the notice of lawmakers for several days, as they remained consumed with the controversial bailout bill. When they found out, some legislators were furious. Some congressional staff members have privately concluded that the notice was illegal. But they have worried that saying so publicly could unravel several recent bank mergers made possible by the change and send the economy into an even deeper tailspin.
Here is the REALLY interesting part.
“It was a shock to most of the tax law community. It was one of those things where it pops up on your screen and your jaw drops,” said Candace A. Ridgway, a partner at Jones Day, a law firm that represents banks that could benefit from the notice. “I’ve been in tax law for 20 years, and I’ve never seen anything like this.”
More than a dozen tax lawyers interviewed for this story — including several representing banks that stand to reap billions from the change — said the Treasury had no authority to issue the notice.
If I recall, there was suppose to be accountability and transparency in this financial bailout. Guess the Bushies lied again! Big Suprise, right? NOT! Too bad he can’t be prosecuted for highway robbery. 200 years ago he’d just be tarred and feathered. Now that would be a sight for sore eyes.
I read recently the President Elect Obama was looking at reversing some of the Bushie changes. I wonder if they can reverse this mess? Or is it too late and Corporate Facism has won once again thanks to GW Bush!
And if that isn’t bad enough, now American Express is going to have the same privileges as a Bank? What?
The US Federal Reserve Monday authorized giving credit card giant American Express full status as a bank holding company.
The US central bank said that both American Express Company and its affiliate American Express Travel Related Services would be allowed to form bank holding companies, as the AMEX group converts its Salt Lake City, Utah-based American Express Centurion Bank into a full commercial bank.
Does that mean American Express now gets Federal Bailout money?
UPDATE: This sounds like a great idea!
Starting in 1886, judges started recognizing corporations had rights accorded to people. The first one was the 14th Amendment. And nowhere in the Constitution, nowhere in the Bill of Rights, do we find the word “corporation.” This is totally judicial fiat. What this has done is allow a consolidation of wealth and power to the corporations that now threatens to destroy the republic. We want separated church and state—we now need to separate corporation and state.
On March 24, 1989—which is when [the] Exxon [Valdez] grounded and spilled 11–38 million gallons of oil in Prince William Sound, I was commercial fishing. I held a commercial fishing permit, and I fished salmon. I also held a Masters and a PhD in marine toxicology. Exxon came to Cordova, Alaska, stood in our high school gym, and promised us, “We will make you whole.” Instead, Exxon worked behind the scenes to eliminate thousands of business claims. Exxon threw an army of attorneys at this case. And it’s not just the Exxons of the world, it’s any of these big transnational corporations have the ability, because of their wealth and power, to completely overwhelm small communities that get in their way.
If we had had the 28th Amendment to the Constitution, Exxon would not have been able to use the 5th Amendment and the 7th Amendment.
Makes sense to me! Perhaps this would be a good test to see how the new Congres reacts to the will of the people!