Transparency Schmancparency: Bailout Payment Details Blacked Out

from the this-will-end-badly dept

With the financial bailout process under way, our main fear was that the government would royally screw up, often by handing out favors to friends, rather than focusing on what actually needs to be done to get the economy moving in the right direction. To counter that possibility, one thing you heard repeatedly was that there would be unprecedented "transparency" in how the government conducted this. Transparency here is important. In fact, a big part of the reason we're in this mess in the first place was that banks consistently obfuscated the details of various deals, in order to hide the risk levels. That caused banks and others to buy hugely risky assets, believing they weren't that risky. So, is the government really being transparent?

Of course not.

The folks over at Planet Money note that the first contract awarded under the bailout, with Bank of New York Mellon Corp. just so happens to have the compensation details to Bank of New York Mellon redacted. If anyone is going to trust the government in handling the $700 billion, how much it spends and how it compensates the various banks that take part in the process clearly need to be open. Otherwise this is a huge opportunity for cronyism and corruption. To start out by blacking out the compensation details is quite troubling, and it doesn't exactly bode well for how transparent the rest of this process is going to be.


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  •  
    identicon
    NeoConBushSupporter, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 10:52am

    Get used to it!

    You were kidding yourself if thought Nancy Pelosi or Hussien Obama were going to let you see the details of their “great government giveaway”. What you people have forgotten in your orgasmic zeal for the messianic Obama, is that socialism doesn’t answer to the people. Questions have been lingering around this campaign since the beginning, questions about anti-american sentiment, connections to Aires, Wright and other domestic terrorists, questions about a fundamentalist Islamic background, etc etc etc. You techdirt hippies, like the rest of liberal elite media, are too afraid to be called racists to push for answers . Unless you people wake up, you will soon be living in an afro-centric, islamo-facist, commi-socialist America!

    VOTE McCain 2008 – He won’t distribute any wealth, that’s a promise you can take to the bank!

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:26am

      Re: Get used to it!

      Eh!!!

      I thought the bailout package was created patriotic, republican and anticommunist Bush!

       

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      greatwhiteshark, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:34am

      Re: Get used to it!

      i hope you are a satirist and im just making myself look like an idiot for posting this...

      if you have forgotten already, your very own bush (and mccain) were both publicly huge supporters of this bail out bill (mccain even tried to delay the debates in order to 'push the bill through'). bush practically threw a hissy fit when it got shot down on its first run through the house. the only reason many republicans did not vote for it the first time wasn't because it was a crappy bill, or the underlying ethics of the bill were wrong, but because there were not enough underwritings in the bill that helped them or the corps. in their corner - which the senate added some of the requested ones and the bill passed with no problems. to lay blame on the eventual failure of this bill on either party alone is the biggest form of ignorance there is, and the real way america needs to 'wake up'. because the reason it will fail is the same reason we need it in the first place: a corrupt government. you have just been blinded by your affliations to not see this and, in turn, continue to accept, and even support, a broken system. you have even been trained by the republican party to look and yell at the democrats while they sweep their trash into the corner, just as democrats pull the same trick on their supporters when they need to remove something they dont want you to see.

      and do you think obama would be the first racist to be in office? the rest of your claims are just conflicting and silly so i wont even refute them.

      good day sheep

       

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        Joe, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:59am

        Re: Re: Get used to it!

        Neither party is fully to blame for any of America's problems. the real issue is the corruption of the overall government and the infighting which makes it so nothing gets done.

         

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      Chuck, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 1:23pm

      Re: Get used to it!

      Its this type of simple mindedness that blinds the real truth.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 2:19pm

      Re: Get used to it!

      How convenient of you to ignore the actual facts.

      Perhaps in your zeal to be masturbate to pictures of Sarah Palin, you forgot that it's the Republicans who are currently in charge, and administering this bailout.

      Oh, and while we're at it, let's not forget Mr. McSame's relationship with G. Gordon Liddy or Charles Keating. And Mrs. Palin's relationship with the Alaska Liberation Front.

      And please explain exactly how a white man, voting for a black man, is racist?

      I can tell you this: When the afro-centric, islamo-facist, commi-socialists take over, you'll be at the top of our list of targets. Fucktard.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Oct 22nd, 2008 @ 9:23am

        Re: Re: Get used to it!

        When a white man votes for a black man because he's a black man, that's racist. So long as you're voting for Obama because you agree with his views and feel his plans for the Nation will improve things, you should be OK.

         

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      Steve, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 3:24pm

      Re: Get used to it!

      Wow, you're retarded.

       

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      FiscallyResponibleObamaSupporter, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 3:30pm

      Re: Get used to it!

      You mean the "Great Government Giveaway" That was jammed down congress's throat by Dubahya.. the one he threw a fit about not passing the first time. The one republicans voted for once it had more pork in it for them. The one that McCain stopped his campaign to go and vote for? That!.. GGG? is that the one were talking about?... Hmmm Thought so...

      Oh and instead of imaginary terrorist ties = Ayres why not bring up a real terrorist tie
      http://www.salon.com/opinion/feature/2008/10/07/palins_unamerican/

      But you right wing zealot neocons are to racist to take the blinders off and realize that your trickledown philosophies are destroying this country!

      VOTE Obama 2008 - He wont make the rich richer while you loose your home!

       

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      Enrico Suarve, Oct 22nd, 2008 @ 3:48am

      Re: Get used to it!

      Dude - you still crack me up

      Happy trolling and peace ;0)

       

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      Ombama OWNS YOU, Oct 24th, 2008 @ 5:45pm

      Re: Get used to it!

      Yeah but he's going to kick McSame's ass right outta town. Democratic Super-majority FTW!!

       

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    damn strait, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 10:57am

    WOOT!

    Thats it. WOOT! Go McCain. Barry will not have the Whitehouse.

     

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    angry dude, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:00am

    Ha Big deal

    The government is totally screwed up
    I can tell you stories you won't believe, oops, I'd better not...
    This country is going down

     

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    Vukovar, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:02am

    I don't know what's worse.....

    The blatant ignorance of some of the Republican party supporters, or the fact that they get to vote.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:07am

      Re: I don't know what's worse.....

      You mean the Democrat controlled congress?

      Come on, are you so blind to think that only one of the parties is causing this problem? They're both filled with corrupt crooks.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:28am

        Re: Re: I don't know what's worse.....

        They are all crooks once they reach the National level. Our political party system has ensured that. We need campaign finance reform to put an end to our legally corrupt federal government.

        Now the question is, can we get "our" representatives to regulate themselves? Sadly, at this point, it may take another revolution for that to happen.

        Maybe one day we the people will wake up together and realize that this is not about black vs white, muslim vs christian, this is about rich vs poor and the rich trying to get out of paying their fair share.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 2:07pm

          Re: Re: Re: I don't know what's worse.....

          Groups of people in the form of corporations are just as dangerous as groups of people in the form of the poor masses.

          The thing that made the US different was the lack of control one group had over another group.

          Our current political system is a myriad of controlling each other and people are disillusioned in to thinking that if *their* interests were in control, everything would be fine.

          We need to destroy the systems of control we have over each other. Crime and regulation are control structures that need to be minimized.

           

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      Joe, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:57am

      Re: I don't know what's worse.....

      Well i can't say democrats are any better than republicans. Although I'd really hope people would stop calling Barack a muslim because 1) It isn't true, and 2) why is it said with such disdain?

      A person's ethnicity doesn't tell their life story. If you look at half the super rich kids in America, you know the white kids who's parents are never around. They are just as screwed up as some religious zealots. Just in different ways.

       

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      CastorTroy-Libertarian, Lover, General Annoyance f, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 2:00pm

      Re: I don't know what's worse.....

      Both side has its ignorance, and I become afraid everytime one of them opens their mouths... but please acknowledge the democrats are just as bad...if not worse in some cases (PETA).cough cough...

       

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    Sean, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:07am

    Neither is the best choice

    To Vukovar

    Neither candidate is truly doing it to help out the people. They (McCain and Obama and most of the politicians in DC) are both arrogant and self-centered. Truly honest politicians do not last long in DC because the money is there for the taking.

     

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      Vukovar, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:12am

      Re: Neither is the best choice

      I agree with that - it is tiring each election time to have to decide on the lesser of two evils, knowing fully well that once they get elected, their primary responsibility becomes "to get re-elected." Just as the stump speeches - last I checked, Congress was the responsible party for passing legislation. It's disheartening to see people fall for the same thing.

      What's distasteful is the first comment. It reminds me of the rabid McCain fans you see on TV saying "kill him", "terrorist" and so forth. On the bright side, at least the author is capable of demonstrating their ignorance, racism and stupidity so there's hope.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:26am

        Re: Re: Neither is the best choice

        You really need to check your sarcasm meter, re NeoConBushSupporter. Reread the signature....

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:35am

        Re: Re: Neither is the best choice

        "What's distasteful is the first comment. It reminds me of the rabid McCain fans you see on TV saying "kill him", "terrorist" and so forth."

        I guess you missed the part that no one ever said that at a McCain rally. It was made up.

         

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    Shroom Demon, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:17am

    Trust no one

    It is not the government’s place to BAIL anyone out, not BIG biz, and not SMALL biz.

    If they could not manage their own money then they should fail. Just like the money paid out to the families of the twin towers. While tragic, it is not the governments place to pay out money.

    McCain will not help either he is just as bad as the others. There is no current candidate that will bring this titanic out of the depths it is about to sink.

    Back to the basics I say, is it in the constitution? Does it violate the constitution? Don’t do it.

     

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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:21am

    Saw it coming

    As soon as Bush was up there saying we need it and we need it now, that was the first major red flag that it should be avoided at all costs and that there are FAR better plans available.
    We all know how he loves throwing our money at his friends.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:28am

      Re: Saw it coming

      And we all know that democrat's friend, Freddie and Fannie, got us into this mess. Why don't we check to see who has received the 2nd most campaign money from them. Oh I see it was Obama.

       

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        Vukovar, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:37am

        Re: Re: Saw it coming

        Please. Wall Street engineered the laundering of the loans by chopping them up into small pieces and then repackaging them. It's history repeating itself, just like the S& L bailout, and once again the taxpayers are taken to the cleaners. Transparency? Sure. Let's meet back here in what - 6-7 years to discuss the need to deregulate the markets, banks and lending practices because the current oversight (ha) is to restrictive and is curbing economic growth. I'll take my chances with an unknwon candidate any day over more "compassionate conservatism."

         

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        Killer_Tofu (profile), Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:57am

        Re: Re: Saw it coming

        I will never understand you people.
        Just because I highly dislike Bush you assume I am a democrat. I do not dislike all republicans, but thank you for assuming so.
        To say it was all Freddie and Fannie seems extremely closed minded too.
        Oh, and way to not even respond at all to my actual statement that Bush cannot be trusted and is an idiot.

         

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          Vukovar, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 12:19pm

          Re: Re: Re: Saw it coming

          I agree - Bush is and idiot and cannot be trusted. To have one President with such an egregious list of wrongs is a black mark on this country. Unjustified war in Iraq, an unwinnable (by military standards) war in Afghanistan, support of a dictator in Pakistan and when that failed, unrestrained drone bombing of tribal areas with high civilian causalties (which leads back to the resurgent Taliban). Suspension of habeus corpus with Guantanimo Bay detainees, an economic morass at home, croneyism abounds with military contracts, and then whine and complain that the world doesn't respect us anymore. It's not hard to figure out why the US is in decline - it's unfortunate that we've allowed it to happen.

           

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    Re: Get used to it!, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:29am

    Benjie

    "[...]afro-centric, islamo-facist, commi-socialist America[...]"

    islamo-facist: We live in a facist country already where we think we can bomb other coutries. USA is one the of the hated coutries around the world

    commi-socialist: Obviously free market doesn't work

    "He won’t distribute any wealth, that’s a promise you can take to the bank!": Sweet.. now we can all remain poor while the upper-upper-class can walk all over us.

    Is there a reason why Japan has 1gig-internet for $50 a month and I can't get cable internet with 10mb for under $60?

    is there a reason why my friend went to ireland and EVERY pub out in the middle of no where had huge 56" plasma tvs and we're years behind the curve for digital tv

    is there a reason why some countries have 3 months off of paid vacation AND they can afford more luxuries than us?

    free market has failed

    a middle ground is best.

     

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      Kiba, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:46am

      Re: Benjie

      Do you realize that you're talking about corny capitalism rather than the free market?

      If you didn't know, the fed control banking in this country. The fed also grant monopolies left and right.

      Let not forget that farmers get subsidy from the government.

      And don't forget that the Federal bank lower the interest rate to a ridiculous low level.

      So yeah. Socialism AKA corny capitalism does sucks.

       

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      Jeff, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 12:33pm

      Re: Benjie

      "[...]is there a reason why some countries have 3 months off of paid vacation AND they can afford more luxuries than us?[...]"

      I'm curious where this place is. Sounds like a winner to me.

      On another note. Everyone keeps hyping the current financial problems as a capitalism fail. It's been a long time since we were a capitalist nation.

      The tricky thing about capitalism is that once you insert socialist structures the backbone of the system weakens and the only way to prop it up is with more socialist programs.

      I don't necessarily have a problem with socialism or capitalism or even a combination of the two. But lets not rest these problems on the back of capitalism when socialism is equally at fault.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 2:28pm

        Re: Re: Benjie

        Aha, an economic genius. Please, Mr. Genius, explain how SOCIALISM caused this unprecedented collapse of our financial institutions? Did they give all the money to you, so you can buy a brain cell that works?

         

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      Dude, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 4:29pm

      Re: Benjie

      The free market hasn't failed at all. It's doing exactly what it is supposed to do. What too many observers misunderstand about the current economic meltdown is that this credit crisis not the fault of unfettered capitalism. It demonstrates, in fact, the absolute best thing about capitalism.

      It is the absolute punishment of stupidity and greed, and the triumph of thrift, innovation, creativity and focused ambition. Bad ideas are doomed to fail, and the mortgage securities racket was clearly something that could not possibly sustain itself when idiots gamed the system in the delusion that they could beat it. The Invisible Hand can slap you silly if you don't pay attention to what is going on around you.

      A free market means that there are winners and there are losers. It is the bailout that is the enemy of the free market because it rewards the losers and punishes the winners (the people who minimize their debt and try to maximize their savings).

       

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      CastorTroy-Libertarian, Lover, General Annoyance f, Oct 22nd, 2008 @ 5:21am

      Re: Benjie

      Trade your rights and responsiblities for a yoke and become the beast of burden you are..

       

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    bob, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:34am

    And The Cure For This Is?

    Ron Paul

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 11:49am

    All I have to say is watch the new movie from ZEITGEISTMOVIE.COM

     

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    Benjie, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 12:07pm

    Education

    Just make a board of the top 100 most respectable researchers in economics/politcs who teach for a living but have no political ties because they hate both parties and want change. Give this group marshal power as long as they're unanimus with their choices.

     

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    Benjie, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 12:40pm

    re: Jeff

    "But lets not rest these problems on the back of capitalism when socialism is equally at fault."

    I blame greed.. :*(

    The hardest thing to get rid of. Like they say, the only people who make it far in politics arethe people you don't want running things.

     

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    Charlie, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 12:55pm

    As Sartre said,"Hell is other people." Why doesn't everyone just die?

     

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    Benjie, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 12:55pm

    re: Jeff Again

    "[...]is there a reason why some countries have 3 months off of paid vacation AND they can afford more luxuries than us?[...]"

    I'm curious where this place is. Sounds like a winner to me.


    I forget which countries, but there area few European countries where there's a 3 month paid leave.

    I had both an economics teacher tell me tails of these places and his travel abroad to see people loaded with the newest technology and tons of time off with 6 hours work days that don't start until 10am. And the nation was making positive incoming from exporting more than importing

    Also, friends who did semesters abroad that touched base in several European nations. they said school didn't start until 12pm, ended around 4pm. Late night lifes, which is why school starts at 12pm. Every kid and their mom had cell phones which were high end $400 phones. Bottled water costed upwards for $6.

    I guess they said a lot of people asked how Americans work so much and have so little money.

    Ma'b all this wealth comes from a decent public transportation and few people with cars..?

    why my friend came out with is They work to live, we live to work.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 1:14pm

      Re: re: Jeff Again

      "Also, friends who did semesters abroad that touched base in several European nations. they said school didn't start until 12pm, ended around 4pm. Late night lifes, which is why school starts at 12pm. Every kid and their mom had cell phones which were high end $400 phones. Bottled water costed upwards for $6.

      I guess they said a lot of people asked how Americans work so much and have so little money."

      This has got to be one of the most uninformed, retarded posts I've ever seen anywhere. First off, they sound like lazy morons with more money than brains to me. Secondly, America is considered one of the richest nations on the planet, how is it we have "so little money"???

      Thanks for dropping everyone's IQ by 10 points today. FAIL

       

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        Benjie, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 2:25pm

        Re: Re: re: Jeff Again

        Atleast I cited my sources.. :p

        hear-say/etc

        All I'm doing is relaying what my friends witnessed over a 6 month period traveling and my econ teacher who lived in europe for several years claimed the same thing.

        I know there's a huge lack of statistics, but there must be 'some' truth to someone with a PHD and his life experience only be be reafirmed by my friend's travels.

        small samplings != average

         

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    Bruce Barlow, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 1:43pm

    Bailout transparency/lack off

    Does anyone expect anything different from this administration? We have had nothing but smoke and mirrors, and an incredible amount of dishonestly masked as misintepreted information.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 2:34pm

    It's those pesky Canadians' faults!!!!!!!!!!!

     

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    another mike, Oct 21st, 2008 @ 3:54pm

    for my fellow cultists

    Vote Cthulhu this November. Why settle for a lesser evil?

     

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    Enrico Suarve, Oct 22nd, 2008 @ 4:00am

    Some details of the top bonuses

    Hi All

    Sorry to depress y'all but this was in the Guardian in the UK a few days ago

    I can't believe no one in the US is reporting this - actually yeah, yeah I can, forget I said it

    Anyways looks like 1/10th of the $700Billion has so far been allocated to executive bonuses

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2008/oct/17/executivesalaries-banking

    Oh and before you all go partisan on each others asses - remember this was a republican bill supported by Obama AND McCain

    My advice (for what it's worth) - vote with your conscience , tactical voting is pointless when there's so little difference between the main parties anyway

     

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    Twinrova, Oct 22nd, 2008 @ 4:01am

    Once again, there's surprise?

    Bailout + government = disaster. It's simple math anyone can understand.

    Remember I stated I wrote both Indiana senators on their reasons for passing this bill? The responses I received were canned. Just the typical "we needed to do something" blurb which basically came down to "I did it because I care more about business than I do you, stupid constituent."

    If you want to read their reply, let me know. I'll post.

    Otherwise, this news shouldn't shock, upset, or surprise anyone.

    Because behind it all, if anyone here thinks the bill will stop at $850 billion, you're a fool.

    I wish Americans would wake the hell up and learn how their government works. Instead of voting for the idiot who kisses babies, vote for those smart enough not to pass bills like the big bailout.

    And to those who turned this into a political debate: If any of you vote for either candidate, you're a moron.

    Neither are worthy of a vote by any American.

    Mike: Any reason there's no edit feature?

     

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    WAVERUNNER, Oct 22nd, 2008 @ 4:51am

    see how transparency works

    To see how transparency works we need to look at previous expenditures of government aid.
    just look at the government bailout for Hurricane Katrina.

    114 BILLION DOLLARS
    $114,000,000,000.00 was the amount of money committed by the government to rebuild New Orleans. Interesting number, what does it mean?
    A. Well, if you are one of the 484,674 residents of New Orleans (every man, woman, and child) you each could have gotten $235,210. 1,337,762 residents = $85,217
    B. Or; if you have one of the 188,251 homes in New Orleans, the government could have purchased your home for $605,574. 556,234 homes = $204,950
    C. Or; if you are a family of four, your family could have received $940,840. 4x$85,217 = $340,868
    The statistics for New Orleans are hard to determine so I have given you the low and high numbers, I am guessing its somewhere in-between.
    This was in lieu of any insurance payments. All of the people in New Orleans could have moved to higher ground and away from the coast decreasing the cost of future disasters.
    Now, was anyone in New Orleans asked what they would like to do? The government has not handed out all of this money as of yet.

     

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    identicon
    new monetary movement, Oct 30th, 2008 @ 2:34pm

    demopublicans and republicats

    people need to see through the left/right paradigm.
    This is how they keep us arguing over small things. The fact is we are the new Weimar 9/11 was our Reichstag, the CFR Rand Corp and other groups are all part of the NWO.
    A dream througout history, from Rome to Germany to the EU, to the AIU, to the AU the league of nations, Eisienhower warned of this people, we have no republic we have no democracy, why argue, we are under MARTIAL LAW.
    Read through the board, this is a way to seperate us and all the while they move in a steal more of our rights.
    Learn to grow your own food, get off the grid and Fluoride.
    The next two years are going to be scarry.
    We should watch Nov. 22nd and early Febuary, more flase flag events. The Rand Corp is pushing for a WWIII the CFR wants it, our military industrial complex wants it, you sheep will want it too when you are lied to again and believe that the government, either side, is on your side.

    Why can't you people wake up, many of you are claiming this that or the other about your side of government.
    How come no one is saying, Hey Ron Paul called ALL of this when we were star struck with the Kenyan Obama and Awe struck at the shell shocked McCain, by the way, Vietnam was staged, look up Gulf of Tonkin, see that it was ALL a LIE.
    OUR government lies to us to get what they want. man I want to help everyone see all this, but more than likely you will rad this, get scarred for a minute and then, poof, a beer commercial or ad for the next football game flashes on the screen and off to sleep you go.
    good night

     

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