OH, MY GOD!
MORE THAN THREE TRILLION!
HOW’D IT HAPPEN? WHO DID IT?
This will not be fair or thorough. If I were up to that task, and I am not, you, dear friend, would not have the stomach to take on that 400 page book. But, let’s see if we can create a picture (or so).
THIS MAN, THE WORST PRESIDENT IN HISTORY,
IS, BY DEFINITION, ALWAYS GUILTY.
THE STORY STARTS WITH THIS MAN
Who, because he will land among the top quartile of U.S. Presidents, should be very briefly studied in one area. He has, at best, a spotty record in his top appointments. But let us focus on Treasury Secretary and Fed Chairman.
Paul O’Neill, Bush’s first Treasury Secretary has had a exemplary career in both the public and private sectors. As Treasury Secretary, O’Neill, who had never been in banking or securities, was mediocre at best. Bush turned to . . .
John William Snow,
Snow was a highly successful railroad man who none-the-less served with some distinction at Treasury. He clearly identified the looming Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac home loan crisis and brought a solution to the Congress. Three times. The Democrats were , at best, adversarial. The Republicans were, to say the least, disinterested. Bush had, by 2006, accumulated a number of mistakes. His plate was full.
Snow’s resignation from Treasury opened the way for Bush’s one huge blunder. Word was sent to the President that the” best break” of his Presidency was within reach; The legendary CEO of Goldman Sachs . . .
HENRY (HANK) PAULSON . . .
COULD POSSIBLY BE CONVINCED TO MAKE HIMSELF AVAILABLE.
The message turned out to be true. Hank would make the sacrifice! His credentials were breathtaking! A star career in finance and securities —imagine, Goldman Sachs! More than that Paulson had graduated from Dartmouth and received his MBA from Harvard. And, don’t forget, he married well, the former Wendy Judge, a Wellesley College graduate. (No “Sarah Palin” issues to worry David Brooks.)
Did Hank Paulson possibly suspect there was trouble coming in the home mortgage market? Could he have any inkling of a looming European banking disaster? And Goldman Sachs, itself? Surely Hank must have had full confidence his own nine figure Goldman Sachs fortune was solid —safe. O.K. that would all be wrong. It is doubtful anyone ever came into government with a greater personal and professional vested interest than Hank Paulson. And Paulson knew two assets were available when he got there. He put them right on his team.
NEWLY APPOINTED FEDERAL RESERVE CHAIRMAN
CHAIRMAN OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF HEW YORK
Right on his team. Hank’s team! This was not, “Ben’s team.” This was not, “Timmie’s team.” And this was not, “G. W.’s team.” Now, with the failing effort in Iraq and the emerging surge strategy, President Bush’s plate was full. That does not change President Bush’s responsibility. The Paulson led events of late 2008 were and are President Bush’s responsibility. We won’t go into TARP here. This is all background; context for . . .
TODAY’S STORY OUR SUSPICIONS TIMES 150%
A year ago we “heard” The Fed had secretly infused (digital for printed) two trillion dollars into the “money supply,” an act called “QE.” Where the money went was not revealed. Gee, I wonder, could any have gone to Goldman Sachs?
This year some of us noticed rising prices and connected the inflation to the “QE” —money that had never been “produced.” We learned some of the truth today. Take a look from the Washington Post:
The financial crisis stretched even farther across the economy than many had realized, as new disclosures show the Federal Reserve rushed trillions of dollars in emergency aid not just to Wall Street but also to motorcycle makers, telecom firms and foreign-owned banks in 2008 and 2009. . . .
“The American people are finally learning the incredible and jaw-dropping details of the Fed’s multitrillion-dollar bailout of Wall Street and corporate America,” said Sen. Bernard Sanders (I-Vt.), a longtime Fed critic whose provision in the Wall Street regulatory overhaul required the new disclosures. “Perhaps most surprising is the huge sum that went to bail out foreign private banks and corporations. As a result of this disclosure, other members of Congress and I will be taking a very extensive look at all aspects of how the Federal Reserve functions.”
The Fed launched emergency programs totaling $3.3 trillion in aid, a figure reached by adding up the peak amount of lending in each program. Read the rest.
And Get RUSH’S TAKE HERE