Two different versions of reality are circulating in the mainstream media. One version is the "news" dutifully read on air from press releases put out by the large banks. From what is being read from the TelePrompTers you would think that there wasn’t any problem with the banks and after the slight hiccup in the economy they are making billions again and ready for business as usual.
The other version is coming out in drips and drabs in the print media. People who attended White House meetings with bankers say that the encounters have been heated with Banking Regulators in favor wholesale firings and a crack down on executive pay. The bankers want to continue collecting billions in salary and perks from banks that are losing, well, billions, and not just investors money (that’s long gone) but now taxpayer money as well.
The bankers contend that they are solvent but to make that claim they are valuing their toxic assets at 91% of original value. Nobody will give them anything like that and never will, but when your weekly salary is measured in millions you must be smarter than everybody else. Right? (yeah right) They are really operating like any other chronic gambler who is sure that if they just keep going back to the table they will win it all back. Of course they aren’t gambling with their money; it’s our farm they are betting on an inside straight; they win no matter how much we lose.
But that’s the "free market", right? How dare Obama and a bunch of bureaucrats at the Treasury Dept. interfere in the "free market". Just keep printing the money and handing it to them and everything will be all right. Just keep repeating: everything will be all right, we just need to keep printing money, printing money, printing, printing....
The bankers are creating the public illusion that the "free market" is working everything out and the Government is putting undo burdens on them. This may make it difficult for Obama to convince Congress to authorize further action. If they prevail and are able to just go back to business as usual, then what we will get is another bubble. This one won’t take long to run its course and when it bursts things really will get bad. Everybody should follow the President’s example and plant a garden. www.prairie2.com