The Texas Bohemian

Word artist. Jack of all Trades.

Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid

The more I consider the implications of that horrific bill Congress passed last week the more worried I get about our future.

My wife is tapping me on the shoulder wanting to get to the computer so I have to wait for more writing on this subject but here is a letter I’m writing to Texas papers.

You have total permission to send this to your paper. I don’t care who you give credit for the letter as long as you keep the words intact.

After the letter I’ll post my raw notes on that bill. Later I’ll try to write more words.

The letter:

Be afraid. Be very afraid. Congress passed the “Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008,” far more than a “bail out.” Did legislators actually read the bill? I did. Every American should. To say we’ve “given away the bank” is an understatement of enormous proportions.

Bush now has authority to buy ANY mortgage, security, or stock if the purchase “…promotes financial market stability.” It does NOT stipulate the item must be financially harmful to the holder. The administration can buy nearly a trillion dollars of American property, whatever it wants, with virtually no limitations! Consider the implications before reading further.

Oversight? Besides the Secretary himself the “oversight board” has the Fed chairman, SEC chairman, and director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Fox watching the hens! Congressional oversight is reduced to occasional reports to committees, like that will matter.

The Secretary has unlimited authority to hire employees, establish programs, contract with companies, designate financial institutions as federal agents and write regulations. In other words the Bush administration can hire or contract the very people who have caused this so-called crisis at premium federal rates and do whatever it wants with that $700 billion.

Besides the insanity of giving Bush these powers the bill has hundreds of pages Congressmen called “sweeteners.” Indeed. They’re mostly sweet to members of Congress, bitter for us. Some disturbing parts are not sweet at all, such as giving the IRS authority to conduct unlimited clandestine investigations and increasing the national debt from $10.5 to $11.3 TRILLION.

Congress has given the Bush administration one power after the other, beginning with the fantastically Orwellian Homeland Security bill. Where power wasn’t authorized the administration has simply taken it. Neither Congress, the Supreme Court nor the American people have had the guts to stand in his way. Now, at last, the administration has had the last bit of power handed to it through this bill. How bad will it get now that Bush/Cheney owns the bank? In the words of Bachman Turner Overdrive, “b-b-b-b-baby, you ain’t seen nothing yet!”

Here are my raw notes:

Notes on bail out bill

7

(9) TROUBLED ASSETS.—The term ‘‘troubled

assets’’ means—

(A) residential or commercial mortgages

and any securities, obligations, or other instruments

that are based on or related to such

mortgages, that in each case was originated or

issued on or before March 14, 2008, the purchase of which the Secretary determines promotes

financial market stability; and

(B) any other financial instrument that the

Secretary, after consultation with the Chairman

of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve

System, determines the purchase of which

is necessary to promote financial market stability,

but only upon transmittal of such determination,

in writing, to the appropriate committees

of Congress.

8 Authorizes scty of treasury… buy troubled assets… any financial institution

10 actions authorized as deemed necessary

Without limitation

Hiring employees

Entering into contracts for services (no mention of bids)

Designate financial institutions as agents of fed

Issuing regulations

** appears that the fed will be covering the ass of companies who made crappy loans by buying them up.

15 considerations

So much bullshit fluff

18 oversight board – fox over the hen house

Chairman of board of Fed reserve sys

Secty of treasury (wow, how about that)

Director of Fed Housing Finance Agency

Chairman SEC

25 contract procedures

Streamlined, Secretary may waive specific provisions of the

Federal Acquisition Regulation upon a determination that

urgent and compelling circumstances make compliance

with such provisions contrary to the public interest.

7 days to report to house

32-33… Executive compensation

Include: …limits on compensation that exclude incentives for senior executive officers of a financial institution to take unnecessary and excessive risks that threaten the value of the financial institution during the period that the Secretary holds an equity or debt position in the financial institution;

HUH?

No Golden Parachutes

42 purchase authority

$250 billion

$350 billion with pres request to congress

43 jumps to $700 billion after pres request if not stopped by congress after 15 days

Joint resolution

Lots of hoops, no debate in house

One time shot

49 Everything must be done within 15 day time frame, even if pres veto. Otherwise request is approved

51 Comptroller general oversight required – director of GAO, pres appointed

56 annual audits to Congress

70 Public Debt Limit

Raised from $10.5 tr in 08 to $11.3 tr

72 congressional oversight panel

74 5 members

2 congressmen, 2 senators, 1 between both

92 recoupment to recover fed debt – five years before pres submit proposal

93 FDIC insurance from $100, to $250k

94 FDIC borrowing limits lifted to end of 2009

95 above applied to credit union insurance

115 Division B Energy Improvement and Extension Act

116 Title V – Energy Production Incentives

Extends tax credits several years

168- Black Lung Fund refinance

180+- Carbon Sequestration

270 Division C Tax Extenders and alternative minimum tax relief

269 oil spill liability trust fund

277 alternative minimum tax exemption extension and increase

— whole load of tax incentives for all kinds of junk

293 SEC. 308. INCREASE IN LIMIT ON COVER OVER OF RUM EXCISE TAX TO PUERTO RICO AND THE VIRGIN ISLANDS.

305 Katrina work opportunity tax credit extension

306 Tax incentives for investment in DC

307 charitable deductions for donation of food inventory

309 book inventory

310 wool duty reductions

311 IRS permanent authority for undercover operations

315 Wooden arrows used by children tax – WHY?

325 Mental health parity – insurance coverage

412 Hurricane Ike tax relief

Check these out:

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-10057618-38.html?tag=nl.e433

http://www.taxpayer.net/resources.php?category=&type=Project&proj_id=1429&action=Headlines%20By%20TCS

http://www.taxpayer.net/search_by_tag.php?action=view&proj_id=1418&tag=bailout&type=Project

October 4, 2008 - Posted by | Politics. | , , , , , , , , ,

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