I honestly believe the purpose of the legalese and lengthy dissertation of what should be a relatively simple thing is to make sure no citizenry will
review the document... but I did manage to wade through the first several pages thus far. My thanks to ATS for providing the full text of the bill.
And thus far I do not like what I am reading. This bill invests far too much power in the Secretary. As usual, it is simply a long-winded way of
saying "Do what you think is right, but let us know about it". The US Congress is charged with passing legislation, that is, laws which are to be
followed exactly under the supervision of the Executive Branch. This bill does no such thing. It abrogates the authority of Congress to specify
monetary policy and vests that power in the hands of an unelected Cabinet-level Secretary of the Executive Branch. It also allows that Secretary to
further delegate responsibility to lower-level employees (translation: bureaucrats) who have absolutely no tie to the citizenry.
It is also far too inclusive, encompassing specifically every type of financial institution I can think of and then allowing for future expansion of
that domain on a whim. In short, it is an attempt to create another 'Wall Street' within the Treasury Department itself. We are already having a
major economic meltdown because of the one already in existence; now we need another? This is like saying that since eating a pound of rat poison
makes one ill, the proper cure is to eat two pounds of rat poison. As Spock from the old 'Star Trek
' TV series would say, "That is highly
As for Congressional oversight, it appears to be lacking in substance. Far too much faith is placed in a Secretary, and we have already seen the
catastrophic results of this type of misplaced faith in the Cross-Border Trucking Program. Mary Peters (head of the USDOT) has used the powers granted
to her in a far, far more specific program to thwart national security, public safety, and to basically thumb her nose at both the US Congress and the
American people. In the declaration of hostilities toward 'terrorists', the President himself decided to use loose wording to extend the range of
the intent of the declaration to include an all-out assault on Iraq arbitrarily. We all know how well that turned out.
I have not yet even mentioned the fact that we cannot afford this bailout
! No entity, be it an individual, a corporation/business, or a
country, can continue to spend more than it takes in, and every dime that is taken from the people is one less dime that can go toward the public
economy. Never can a government out-perform private companies in a capitalist system, because no one is at risk in the government. Should the program
in question fail, the taxpayers, not the ones who administer, will bear the brunt of the failure. To believe that a person will be as thrifty and
efficient with others' finances as they are with their own is pure folly.
The proper thing to do would be to allow the banks to fail, and prosecute those at fault through illegal means (such as fraud). Assets of those
individuals could be legally seized to offset the problems caused by such actions. Realizing this would no doubt be insufficient, I could perhaps get
behind a bailout of those common people who lost due to such actions, but I cannot condone this non-specific power grab with no real oversight from
publicly-elected representatives. Of course, if the end result is a retreat from our present capitalistic system (which is responsible for over 200
years of industrial growth and prosperity) toward a socialistic system, then this all makes sense.
In short, as I mentioned on another thread about this matter, we may have won the battle today with the defeat of HR2775, but the war is far from
over. The price of freedom is eternal vigilance, and I for one plan on maintaining that vigil.