In a nationally televised speech on September 24, George W. Bush said in support of the proposed bailout plan that it was meant to “help American consumers and businessmen get credit to meet their daily needs and to create jobs.”
The Bailout Lie Exposed
Bush’s story was subsequently peddled by the Ministry of Information: the more than 700 billion handed over by the Treasury and the Fed to the financial oligarchy will be used to enable banks to resume lending to strapped households and businesses, thereby enabling the economy to regain healthy rates of growth and households and businesses to elude the prospect of extended debt peonage.
But astute observers knew full well that there can be no “regaining” of robust growth rates that had already disappeared with the onset of Reagan/Thatcher neoliberalism. And reflating the housing bubble by encouraging already maxed-out working people and small businesses to dig themselves into a deeper debt grave seems like a recipe for heightening economic catastrophe. But not to worry: the bad guys were not chimps after all. They had no intention of using the proceeds of the giveaway to lend to anyone. We can thank the New York Times’s surprisingly intrepid economics reporter Joe Nocera for this revelation.
In an unexpected adventure in extra-curricular empiricism, Nocera reported in Saturday’s NYT that he was able to gain access to a recording of an employee-only October 17 conference call by a top (unnamed) executive of JPMorgan Chase, the beneficiary of $25 billion of federal largesse.