You are here

Here’s $4 Trillion, Just to Tide You Over


The headlines say the worst is over. The $700B TARP program, for example, stabilized the financial industry.

How does this square with that picture?

Hunkering down by the fire, I snuggled up with H.R. 4173, the financial-reform legislation passed earlier this month by the House of Representatives.

It authorizes Federal Reserve banks to provide as much as $4 trillion in emergency funding the next time Wall Street crashes. So much for “no-more-bailouts” talk.

The bill also allows the government, in a crisis, to back financial firms’ debts. Bondholders can sleep easy -- there are more bailouts to come.

Best of all, the bill contains a provision that, in the event of another government request for emergency aid to prop up the financial system, debate in Congress be limited to just 10 hours.

Things are looking so stable that Congress is pre-authorizing a $4 trillion—with a “T”— bailout to their friends in big banking.

But there is evidence that Congress is listening to the people. That’s why they’re trying to limit debate; so we don’t have time to gather our pitchforks before they sign the checks.