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Henry Paulson
  • John McCain's Guide to Talking Your Way Out of Responsibility for Anything

    Are you tired of being forced into having the courage of your convictions? Doesn't it really get under your skin when people expect you to take responsibility for things that are your responsibility? And isn't it just the worst when decisions that you have made in the past are remembered by people today?

    Well, John McCain — head sensei for the Way of the Maverick — is went on Meet the Press this past weekend to tell you that there's another way!

    Blame Henry Paulson!

    David Gregory: One question about the bailout, the TARP. You voted for it. But you said that you were misled by Former Treasury Secretary Paulson. How so?

    John McCain: We were all misled. We were all misled.

    Yes! We were misled by Henry Paulson. All of us! And not just on the bailout, but on a multitude of things! Henry Paulson has been misleading Americans into a responsibility-free existence for years!

    Harness the ancient wisdom of fearful Bedouin tribespeople to improve your life today! It's just that easy!

    Try it on your boss…

    Your Boss: You're more than an hour late to work this morning.

    You: I was misled by Henry Paulson into believing that the physics governing time had been suspended.

    Try it on your wife…

    Your Wife: You're having sex with my sister!

    You: I was misled by Henry Paulson into believing that you were wearing her skin as a ceremonial raiment.

    You can even try it on your personal deity…

    Your God: You have spent your entire life in the pursuit of debauchery and sinful self-gratification.

    You: I was misled by Henry Paulson into believing that You valued orgiastic Bacchanalia and ecstatic pleasure as states of pure holiness.

    Thanks, John McCain! Now we can all live the life of a Maverick!

    Warning: Offer may not be good in Arizona.

    Tags: Economy, Henry Paulson, John McCain, TARP
  • The Daily Show's Best Ben Bernanke Moments

    As you know, the rumors have been all over the place. First it looked like he was out, and now they say he's still in. Of course the biggest question in either case is, how will the markets react? Well, that and will he go back to Jen? I guess all we can do is sit back and wait for Angelina to make a decision. And while we do that, why not enjoy these Daily Show videos about Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke?

    Slim Thug: Still a Boss

    The list continues below.

    The Daily Show airs Monday through Thursday at 11pm / 1oc.

    Read More »

    Tags: Alan Greenspan, Ben Bernanke, Economy, Federal Reserve, Henry Paulson, John Hodgman, Jon Stewart, Recession, TARP, The Daily Show, Video, Wyatt Cenac
  • Jon Stewart on Wall Street Bonuses

    On last night's Daily Show, Jon Stewart reported that bailed-out Wall Street financial institutions have been doling out bonuses as high as eight figures. And I know that's shocking, but it's important to remember that those employees will in turn spend those bonuses and that money will helpĀ rejuvenate struggling industries. The unicorn sex-slave industry is already poised to have its first positive quarter in years.

    The Daily Show airs Monday through Thursday at 11pm / 10c.

    Tags: Henry Paulson, Jon Stewart, The Daily Show, Timothy Geithner, Video, Wall Street
  • Hey Kids, Let's Put on a Bailout: Henry Paulson Lacks Staff, Wants More Funds

    Not to math up the joint or anything, but let's take a quick review of how that $700 billion bailout (aka TARP, the troubled asset relief program with a heart of gold) is going…

    * $700 billion is equivalent to a gazillion dollars. This has been divided into two installments. The first installment of approximately $350 billion has already been put to work.

    * $250 billion was set aside for the banks, because they're banks.

    * $40 billion for AIG, because if they went down they'd take everyone else down with them.

    * An extra $20 billion for Citigroup, so it can invest in potholes.

    Now it looks like Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson will ask for the second installment of $350 billion, perhaps as early as next week, to minimize time for political wrangling…

    While Mr. Paulson wants to steer more funds to financial institutions, Congress has its own ideas, including aid for the auto industry and troubled homeowners — two ideas Mr. Paulson has resisted.

    Lawmakers are also unhappy with a new Government Accountability Office report that says TARP lacks regulation and oversight, which means the banks are doing (TBD) with their rescue funds. Oh yeah, and TARP lacks staff to operate the bailout…

    The problems are due in part to the rapid implementation of TARP and a lack of staff for the program. The report said about 48 employees had been assigned to TARP as of Nov. 21, only a quarter of the 200 full-time employees the GAO said may be needed to properly implement rescue efforts.

    Yikes! Treasury needs to find 150 number-crunching types who aren't hung up on compliance nonsense, stat.

    I hear there are some investment bankers looking for work these days.

    Tags: Economy, Henry Paulson, TARP
  • TARP II: The Wrath of TALF

    In normal times the Federal Reserve responds to crises by using teeny, gold-plated hydraulic levers to raise and lower interest rates. As you may have noticed, a) they already did that, twice, in October, and b) it's still not 'normal times,' unless you've been cryogenically frozen since the 1930s.

    What's a central bank to do now? Well, hell, why not just print up more money, wrap it in cute acronyms and throw it out there

    The central bank announced what it called a term asset-backed securities loan facility, a plan under which it will lend up to $200 billion to support the issuance of debt backed by consumer and small-business debt — such as credit-card loans, student debt, auto loans and loans backed by the Small Business Administration.

    Because this term asset-backed securities loan facility is crashing into your garage, where it will play wacky pranks and eat your cats, the Fed has dubbed it TALF. Not to be confused with TARP — that was the first one, the famous $700 billion troubled asset relief program that John McCain financed with the sale of his five largest homes. TARP is seeding TALF with about $20 billion (one of John McCain's sheds).

    And let's not forget the poor mortgage giants at the heart of this problem, Fannie, Freddie, Ginnie, Mickey, Minnie, and Goofie…

    In addition, the Fed said that it would purchase up to $100 billion in direct debt of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan Banks, along with up to $500 billion of mortgage-backed securities backed by Fannie, Freddie and Ginnie Mae (the government-sponsored enterprises, also known as GSEs).

    The only disturbing thing about TALF is that, unlike TARP, I guess Ben Bernanke and Henry Paulson didn't need to check with Congress before announcing it?

    How callous. Unemployed Americans are losing their homes, and these guys won't even allow us the joy of our national sport: blaming lawmakers for being in favor of a plan and then against it, or vice versa.

    Tags: Ben Bernanke, Economy, Federal Reserve, Henry Paulson, TALF, TARP