The Treasury Department apparently doesn’t know. But as a friend of mine observes when he pulls out his credit card to buy something he can’t afford: “it’s only money!”
A scathing new report by a congressional watchdog panel blames the Treasury Department for failing to track how banks are spending taxpayer money provided through the government’s $700 billion financial rescue package, also known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP.
The panel, which has been charged with overseeing TARP and is led by Harvard Law professor Elizabeth Warren, said in its 56-page report that it “still does not know what the banks are doing with taxpayer money.”
By investing in banks that have refused “to provide any accounting of how they are using taxpayer money,” the Treasury Department has “eroded” public confidence, the report stated.
I don’t expect the Obama administration to be any less wasteful than the Bush administration. But could the new crowd at least try to account for how the money is being used?
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