$200 TARP Billion for the Little People
I take issue with Steve The Machine Benen’s assertion (Atlantic Monthly) that President Obama’s economic policy implementations for 2009 have “been very effective.” Mr. Benen linked to an economic article in The New York Times which just as incorrectly described the 2009 economic stimulus as being widely interpreted as “worthy,” as if rushing into a burning building to rescue the children before dousing the flames was a “good” thing to do.
The 2009 stimulus was totally necessary, of course, no more or less, with some completely predictable negative results stemming from a number of stupid mistakes, which are now being attempted at being ameliorated with surplus from another desperate policy fix. If in fact the 2009 stimulus was “very effective” why is it now being hastily patched with $200 billion of TARP funds? Well?
This empty puffiness of professionalism, the combative pencil-neck posturing of Rahm Emanuel rattling off the stimulus as some great legislative accomplishment--yet only one of many in DC conventional wisdom, only one of many—is highly irritating, yes, but it much more importantly can lead to many more arrogant stupid mistakes that crush the lives of little Americans if denial stays with us here. For the little people, then, once again a reality break is called for in examining the our current economic terms and some of the horrible errors of the 2009 stimulus.
Which lead to an appalling unemployment rate over 10%, the Obama people were so sure 8.5% is all we would ever see, remember? It should have been easily seen that the incredible mess Obama inherited could smash the US into another Depression, so every available dime--I mean to the freaking penny--should have gone to direct employment stimulus and aid to the states.
What happened? Obama and the Democrats childishly caved and rankly gave up on aid to the states by compromising to a humiliated childish group of losers, and even more infuriatingly naively implemented “the biggest tax cut in history” in a nauseating ersatz show of sick fake bipartisanship, we’re all into wrecking the country’s finances together, c’mon now, just like the Republicans! Who then gave Obama the finger anyway, what a surprise.
Just to twist the knife in a little further, Mr. Harvard later in the same year began babbling about deficit reduction and budget neutrality with other critical initiatives that could help the little people. Why then, Mr. President, did you pass the biggest tax cut in history in February? Well?
So the worthy 2009 stimulus worked, in a fashion, instead of a Depression we got a Great Recession. This is no small thing, not hardly, and it’s simply one of those raw deals in life for the Obama people that folks quite naturally won’t be happy in a Great Recession with a 10% unemployment rate. If the Administration and their supporters insist on strutting around telling everyone how big their policy dicks are because a Depression never happened while hastily shoring up their mistakes from un-foreseen funds, well, praise baby Jesus in a wonderful Christmas.
Seriously. Thank you, President Obama, with all my heart and soul for $200 billion for Americans, it means so much to me and so many others. I suppose we’ll have to put up with how TARP was such another roaring success1 along with it, whatever, $200 billion is a vast fortune of money that will do so much good in so many ways for our people.
It’s merely a start, a patch for the $500 billion in labor programs and aid to the States that should have been in the original 2009 stimulus, that is the reality we all know, but my deep gratitude is sincere and heartfelt nonetheless. Perhaps when we start to enjoy all the investments of happy employed folks building trains and roads that work (for starters) for a strong America $300 billion a year for ten years in policy like this will seem totally acceptable. Of course it will, Bush and those Republicans did wreck the place with the Great Recession, after all.
 The disquieting weekly list of bank failures from the FDIC, the continued tight credit markets, obscene banking compensation rates, and deliberately obfuscated Federal Reserve shenanigans convince me that nothing at all has been fixed in our supremely fucked up banking and finance system. Again, it would behoove the Obama Administration to employ all the restraint they can in proclaiming they’re so awesome in saving this piece of shit system for us in our Merry Christmas Great Recession, our goal should not have been preserving what was.