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Ear to the Ground

Bailout Just a Blip for Big Banks

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Posted on Jul 18, 2009
Monopoly man
amnesta.net

Goldman Sachs’ surprisingly high quarterly earnings were not an isolated case in the banking world this past week—JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Citigroup also raked it in during the second quarter, mere months after American taxpayers bailed them out. Not surprisingly, this latest development in the banking world is ticking off a lot of said taxpaying types.

The New York Times:

Class resentment has waxed and waned in this country, but it is not typically a widespread, default emotion of the American middle class. This is at least in part because it’s an article of faith here that through some combination of hard work and luck, you might get rich, too. And why abuse, soak or heap scorn upon a group you at least have a theoretical chance of joining?

The recession — with its yawning gap between the bonus class on the one hand and the foreclosed upon and newly jobless on the other — is changing that. It’s not merely that Americans have, at least temporarily, abandoned the hope that they’ll earn scads of money. It’s the widespread sense that winners in this economy are produced by a game that’s rigged.

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By california dreamer, July 20, 2009 at 1:12 pm Link to this comment

Correct me if I am wrong.  Wasn’t a good portion of the money paid to AIG used to pay off Goldman Sachs, 100 cents on the dollar?  Isn’t a lot of the reason that Goldman has been able to show a profit based on the money they received from AIG when they hedged their bets against their own mortgage-based securities?  In other words, if AIG had gone belly up, as it would have without the tax payer bailout, then Goldman would have had to take the loss on all those assets?  Now consider if I, as a mortgage holder, had been able to take out insurance against my home going underwater.  Would I be repaid for the drop in value of my home?  I don’t know how valid my argument is, but it seems to me that Goldman is going to be giving out bonuses to those who were helped in making a progress by the bailout.  Shouldn’t the taxpayer get a bonus too?  Lots of questions, not many answers.  Hope someone can elucidate me.

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By Tricky Prickears, July 19, 2009 at 1:57 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

OK great. They made good use of the money. How about a bailout for us small business owners that are getting crushed by this economy?


I didn’t think so.

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By FreeWill, July 19, 2009 at 10:09 am Link to this comment

The American dream is corroding like some abandoned GM junker.  The Myth that any of us regular folks will hit the jack pot and get flush with loot is even less likely than wining the lotto.  Forget about hard work and diligence that fad went out with my grandfather.  We all know that it was, who you know not so much what you know, “G.W.Bush” a prime example.  We have truly entered a new age.  Call it the age of Sociopathic Corporate Aristocracy.  All control of society is being engineered by the elite of this self narcissistic club.  Gone are Democracy, Privacy, Human Rights, and soon Freedom of expression.  Total control is the mandate. So if you are still attached to the “American Dream” their Corporate propaganda is working.  But, I can assure you that the Myth will not put food on your table, house you, or care for you when you are sick.  The “Corporation”  doesn’t care about any of that.  They don’t even care much if you are still there to buy their crap.  They have moved on, like some factory trawler to the new fishing ground, the third world.  It appears that the masses who’s suffering and hard work have given them this unimaginable wealth are “to be let go” with out official notice.  Machines will build everything and they will control the machine. “1984” is here my friends.  Only not the way Orwell had imagined it would look.

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By profmarcus, July 19, 2009 at 8:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

what’s wrong with this picture…? we bail out the richest of the rich - goldman, jpmorgan, citi, bofa - all of which then turn around and suddenly becomes immensely richer thanks to the largesse of us’ns, the american taxpayers…

i think it’s a very questionable assumption to imply, as does the nyt and numerous economic pundits a la kudlow on cnbc, that the “worst crisis since the great depression” is over… i, for one, don’t believe it’s over nor do i believe it SHOULD be over… all that the trillions in bailout money we’ve thrown around like parade confetti is intended to do is perpetuate the status quo, the very same circumstances that created this mess in the first goddam place… let the house of cards collapse and let’s get on with remaking a better world…

http://takeitpersonally.blogspot.com/

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By yours truly, July 18, 2009 at 8:33 pm Link to this comment
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The contradiction between believing that some day through a combination of hard work and luck you’ll make it and knowing that the game is fixed is an example of cognitive dissonance.  It’s always been with us but by publicizing the few who start at the bottom and make it to the top, the powers that be have managed to keep hope alive.  One of the ways they do this is through Celebrity, “American Idol”, for example, with thousands of mostly young people actually trying out, even though the odds for any of them ever getting to the finals is about the same as that of a good high school basketball player making it to the NBA.  This recession, however, is forcing many of us to reexamine our beliefs, a process that can be very anxiety-provoking, indeed, as the contradictions between one’s beliefs and reality become increasingly self-evident.  And it’s during moments like this, where heretofore widespread beliefs are under attack, that, paraphrasing Karl Marx, a history which prior to that moment seemed to be standing still, picks itself up and races ahead.  What’s more, yes we can.

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