Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Obama Sold Out on the Bailout?

Obama's presumed tougher bailout bill looks like toothless Bush-lite at the NY Times:
[A]s intended largely by Mr. Geithner, the plan stops short of intruding too significantly into bankers’ affairs even as they come onto the public dole ... Finally, while the administration will urge banks to increase their lending, and possibly provide some incentives, it will not dictate to the banks how they should spend the billions of dollars in new government money.

And for all of its boldness, the plan largely repeats the Bush administration’s approach of deferring to many of the same companies and executives who had peddled risky loans and investments at the heart of the crisis and failed to foresee many of the problems plaguing the markets.
This voluntary crap is exactly what George W. Bush promoted when he swooped in from Texas 8 years ago. It did not work then. It won't work now.

Banking is less like some kind of delicate mechanism and more like a subspecies of predator taking whatever regulators give. It looks like the Obama Presidency may just have committed itself to continuing to give banks the latitude they need to whatever they want with our tax dollars. I'd like to know when the coddling is going to stop.

UPDATE:  Bank of America does have to money up once more for its next party.

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