BANKING ON A BAILOUT

What’s good for Bank of America is good for America – right?

What’s good for Bank of America is good for America – right?

Well, that’s what this huge banking conglomerate is telling the White House and Congress. These bankers have quietly been circulating a proposal in Washington that they’ve dubbed the “Homeowners Preservation Corporation.” They assert that they are concerned about the little folks who’ve been caught up in the subprime mortgage collapse, so they’re urging a government bailout that would allow these hard-pressed borrowers to refinance and keep their homes. Wow – what altruism!

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Uh… did I mention that Bank of America has several tons of these bad loans hanging over its corporate head? Did I mention that it has already pocketed huge fees for packaging billions of dollars worth of these risky mortgages into intricate, unregulated financial schemes that are now collapsing? Did I mention that Bank of America is presently taking over Countrywide corporation, America’s largest huckster of these subprime mortgages, which will essentially be bankrupt if it doesn’t get a bailout?

Corporate altruism, you see, starts at home.

Gosh, it seems like only yesterday that these high-flying bankers were working with Bush and the Congress to deregulate their financial operations so they could engage in “financial innovations” like subprime mortgages. But – oops! – now that their laissez-fair adventurism is pinching their bottoms, they’re suddenly pleading for a heavy dose of socialistic intervention into their free enterprises. Indeed, banking buccaneers are now telling Washington that some $739 billion of their home loans are at risk of defaulting. So, please, they cry: intrude!

Thousands of modest income Americans were duped and even defrauded by such subprime pushers as Countrywide and Bank of America. The White House and Congress should be helping the dupees – not the profiteers who did the duping.

“Who Should U.S. Help in Subprime Debacle? Banks, Suffering Home Buyers, Wall St.?” The New York Times, February 23, 2008

“Battling the bastards is about as much fun as you can have with your clothes on.”

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