Thursday, July 21, 2011

US Taxpayers in the black on Bank Bailout under TARP

Chrysler 200

While it is likely that the TARP bailout of GM, Chrysler and AIG will ultimately cost U.S. Taxpayers some  $15 - 20 Billion dollars, the Treasury Department announced a few days ago that the bank bailout portion of TARP has seen a net profit to taxpayers of about $10 Billion dollars to date, with more repayments still rolling in.

It is important to remember that the TARP program that likely prevented a  melt-down of the U.S. and global economies was the product of cooperation between President Bush and a Congress controlled by Democrats.  While a majority of Republican senators voted in favor of TARP, the Republicans in the House voted overwhelmingly against the plan.  The unpopular notion of the government stepping in and saving Wall Street and the auto industry was, along with the demonization of the new health care law, a large part of why we are now faced with the current showdown on raising the debt limit.  The votes on TARP were factors in the Tea Party's success in replacing many congressmen, and a few Senators, with anti-government candidates.  So, in a way, a highly successful and reasonably well-thought out rescue of the U.S. and world economies over 2008 and 2009, has put the nation in a place where Tea Party congressmen and Senators like Michele Bachmann, Paul Ryan Sean Duffy, Ron Johnson and Jim DeMint are now in a position to scuttle the recovery that the bi-partisan TARP bailout helped initiate.

I, for one, am glad we still have a home-grown auto industry and didn't shed 500,000 or more jobs at GM, Chrysler and their suppliers around the country.  Plus, without TARP, we wouldn't have had that cool Eminem ad for Chrysler during the Super Bowl.

And here is "Lose Yourself," Eminem's Oscar and Grammy winning rap song from the 8 Mile soundtrack that  provided the theme for the Chrysler ad:

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