Trouble in Bank Land

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martin dufresne

Two threads about the current financial system meltdown are coming to an end: can we have a single one to go on exploring how this is already affecting Canada - not just gloating, but informed assessment?
Here is an eye-opening Op-Ed from Independent U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders: [url=http://www.alternet.org/workplace/99690/]The Middle Class Must Not Be Forced to Bail Out Wall Street[/url]

quote:

If the economy is on the edge of collapse we need to act. But we can't just give away $700 billion of taxpayer money to the banks.
For years, as a member of the House Banking Committee and now as a member of the Senate Budget Committee, I have heard the Bush Administration tell us how "robust" our economy was and how strong the "fundamentals" were. That was until a few days ago. Now, we are being told that if Congress does not act immediately and approve the $700 billion Wall Street bailout proposal these "free marketers" have just written up, there will be an unprecedented economic meltdown in the United States and an unraveling of the global economy.

This proposal as presented is an unacceptable attempt to force middle income families (and our children) to pick up the cost of fixing the horrendous economic mess that is the product of the Bush Administration's deregulatory fever and Wall Street's insatiable greed. If the potential danger to our economy was not so dire, this blatant effort to essentially transfer $700 billion up the income ladder to those at the top would be laughable.

Let us be clear. If the economy is on the edge of collapse we need to act. But rescuing the economy does not mean we have to just give away $700 billion of taxpayer money to the banks. (In truth, it could be much more than $700 billion. The bill only says the government is limited to having $700 billion outstanding at any time. By selling the mortgage-backed assets it acquires -- even at staggering losses -- the government will be able to buy even more, resulting is a virtually limitless financial exposure on the part of taxpayers.) Any proposal must protect middle income and working families from bearing the burden of this bailout.(...)


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