Shaking down the Bank of America in the age of Obama, where the future is now.
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BoA presumably believes that it has bought off the shake-down artists. What, however, of Bank of America’s shareholders and workers? Shortly after announcing its pay-off to Republic, the bank announced plans to cut 35,000 jobs over the next three years, roughly a tenth of its entire workforce. Who is going to help them?
Even worse, the Republic case may trigger a new and dangerous campaign of financial extortion across the U.S. The Community Reinvestment Act pushed banks to make more bad home mortgages in poor neighborhoods for political purposes. With all of the major banks and many smaller ones receiving — in many cases over their protests — federal funds, political hacks and union activists now have a tool to demand that financial institutions give away money to failing companies around the nation. Nor can more federal bailouts be far behind. AFL-CIO President John Sweeney lauded the workers, saying that “Our nation cannot afford to bail out banks and investment firms while leaving workers behind,” including not just those at Republic but, he added, also the auto industry.
The were many good arguments against turning the Treasury and Federal Reserve into one vast corporate soup kitchen. Indeed, it has become sadly apparent that the administration had no idea what it was doing in tossing hundreds of billions of dollars hither and yon. But the Republic case demonstrates yet another danger: inviting the government to direct where banks should lend. If the federal bailout requires Bank of America to “lend” money to an insolvent company ready to close its doors, then we are descending to banana republic status. The economic ride is likely to become much bumpier.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?