TARP, Neil Barofsky, Rep. Alan Grayson and Transparency
by divorced one like Bush
Via Glenn Greenwald and his article The war being waged on the TARP watchdog’s independence comes an interview with Neil Barofsky the man charged with over seeing TARP. It appears the White House is not keeping true to the President’s campaign of a more transparent government.
…the Obama administration is now attempting to induce the Justice Department to issue a ruling that Barofsky’s office is not independent at all — but rather, is subject to, and under the supervision of, the authority of Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner.
Seems Mr. Barofsky’s latest report states that the grand total of all money currently paid out and pledged totals $23.7 trillion.
This is the original article to go along with the interview.
Click here to download and listen.
Via Naked Capitalism comes Rep. Alan Grayson asking Ben Bernanke who got the 1/2 trillion in US dollars as part of a swap. He notes $24 billion in 2007 is now $553 billion yr end 2008. Who got the money? “I don’t know…the loans go to the centeral banks and they then put them out…We are lending to all US financial institutions in exactly the same way.” That is, the fed is making no distinction between our nation and the rest of the world. Bernanke notes the law gives them the right to do this. (Sec 14 of the Federal Reseve Act.) Rep. Grayson issue is; at what point is using this “power” to move 1/2 a trillion dollars is infringing on Congresses control of the Treasury.
(Rep. Grayson has further comment at the link regarding this video.)
Transparency. The Federal Reserve and the Treasury say this money can’t be traced after it passes to the first receiver. Mr. Barofsky has shown that it can be by simple sending out a questionnaire. Bernanke is treating the lending, regardless of recipient as all the same and thus none of it can be traced and that they have a right and authority to use the Peoples Money as they see fit. Rep. Grayson thinks they are overstepping Congress.
Who was it here that noted we had not bailed out the banks, but instead the banks just bought the Treasury?