Shaken. Not Stirred.

Treasury Secretary Tim “I didn’t cheat on my taxes…I just didn’t understand the tax code” Geitner was on the Hill yesterday, waxing semi-eloquent regarding the second half of the bank bailout, a.k.a. “TARP II: When Markets Bite Back.” By all accounts (both liberal and conservative), Geitner’s performance was, at best, underwhelming. He appeared nervous and ill-prepared (note to Tim: the unbuttoned shirt collar under the tie didn’t say “man of action” as much as it said “I’d rather be having a root canal than be here today”). Geitner looked, well…shaken. Congress was not stirred by his performance.

If the Obama administration is going to persist in shoveling this kind of pork at us, they’re going to have to find some much more convincing liars to sell it.

The deal here is that no thinking person believes this “stimulus” bill is about stimulating the economy. Everybody knows that it’s a wish-list of the liberal left, masquerading as stimulus or order to get it passed. Evidently, 30 or 40 years of yearning has the Dems throwing caution to the wind, in order to fund their pet projects. See the problem is, in order to stimulate the economy, it’s necessary to do but two things:

  • Spend less money
  • Reduce taxes

Neither of these strategies holds much appeal to the tax and spend crowd. 800 billion dollars is one HELL of a lot of money, and the real scandal is that over 3/4 of the money won’t see hit the economy until well after the first year. Stimulus, shimulus. It’s all shuck and jive to me.

Here’s my idea of a stimulus plan:

  • Reduce EVERYBODY’S tax rate by 20% for the next year
  • Reduce every department (other than the military’s) budget by 20% for the next year
  • Cut all non-essential spending (National Endowment for the Arts, Mohair research, etc.) by 50%

That’s it. The whole thing. And THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is how you create a stimulus plan that works. To do something like that, it would help to have people that put the public’s interest ahead of their own. Oh, and maybe put somebody in charge of the Treasury Dept. that understands enough about the tax code that he can pay the taxes he owes, and not duck his responsibilities. I can’t see any Democrat doing this, because they are the party of bigger – not smaller – government. There’s not been a Republican since Reagan that had the cojones to even so much as propose this. Pity. We need leaders that will do what works, rather than try and game the system to serve their taste for pork, earmarks, and pet projects. Cut the waste, and the public would grant them a license to thrill.

4 thoughts on “Shaken. Not Stirred.”

  1. Just found this site while googling Tim Geitner. Could not agree more with your statements. The article below is what got me fired up. If he really thinks our anger is directed only at the bank CEO's, he is a total idiot. Hey, maybe the bank CEO's just don't understand finance. There's plenty of blame to go around. Problem is nobody will stand up and admit they were wrong about any of this mess.

    Geithner: Bankers to Blame for Loss of Confidence
    Topics:Banking | Economy (U.S.) | Economy (Global) | Timothy Geithner | White House | Congress | Politics & Government
    Sectors:BanksBy: Reuters | 25 Feb 2009 | 05:41 PM ET Text Size U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Wednesday scolded bankers for creating a damaging loss of confidence, but said nationalizing banks was the wrong strategy for the United States.

    RELATED LINKS

    Current DateTime: 01:23:45 26 Feb 2009
    LinksList Documentid: 29394471
    Why More Banks Aren't Allowed to Fail
    The Looming Credit Card Crisis
    Why Nationalizing Banks Is Market Friendly
    Bank Stress Tests Completed by End of April

    In an interview with Public Broadcasting Service's “Newshour” program, Geithner said he was “deeply offended by the quality of judgments we've seen in the leadership of our nation's financial institutions.”

    “They've created a deep hole of public distrust and anger which is enormously damaging, and they have a huge obligation to try to restore that basic trust and confidence. And we're going to make sure they do it by making sure that our assistance comes with conditions,” he said.

  2. Yep. My dad used to tell me, no matter how noble the idea, it had to walk in on two clean feet. Geitner may be “the smartest kid in the room,” (I have my doubts…BIG doubts), but he has zero credibility – not just because of his tax problems, but because he was the architect of TARP I – an unmitigated disaster.

    The real problem here is when the government started gaming the system to achieve political goals (i.e.: get more people to buy houses…that they couldn't afford), eventually, the system breaks down. To see the guys that screwed it up (Chris Dodd, Barney Frank, TIm Geitner, etc.) all pointing the fingers elsewhere and claiming only THEY can fix the system, is reminiscent of O.J. hitting the golf links to find his wife's murderer.

    Somebody buy these guys some mirrors (so they can see the source of the problem) – and maybe dose them with sodium pentathol before their next news conference.

  3. Just found this site while googling Tim Geitner. Could not agree more with your statements. The article below is what got me fired up. If he really thinks our anger is directed only at the bank CEO's, he is a total idiot. Hey, maybe the bank CEO's just don't understand finance. There's plenty of blame to go around. Problem is nobody will stand up and admit they were wrong about any of this mess.

    Geithner: Bankers to Blame for Loss of Confidence
    Topics:Banking | Economy (U.S.) | Economy (Global) | Timothy Geithner | White House | Congress | Politics & Government
    Sectors:BanksBy: Reuters | 25 Feb 2009 | 05:41 PM ET Text Size U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Wednesday scolded bankers for creating a damaging loss of confidence, but said nationalizing banks was the wrong strategy for the United States.

    RELATED LINKS

    Current DateTime: 01:23:45 26 Feb 2009
    LinksList Documentid: 29394471
    Why More Banks Aren't Allowed to Fail
    The Looming Credit Card Crisis
    Why Nationalizing Banks Is Market Friendly
    Bank Stress Tests Completed by End of April

    In an interview with Public Broadcasting Service's “Newshour” program, Geithner said he was “deeply offended by the quality of judgments we've seen in the leadership of our nation's financial institutions.”

    “They've created a deep hole of public distrust and anger which is enormously damaging, and they have a huge obligation to try to restore that basic trust and confidence. And we're going to make sure they do it by making sure that our assistance comes with conditions,” he said.

  4. Yep. My dad used to tell me, no matter how noble the idea, it had to walk in on two clean feet. Geitner may be “the smartest kid in the room,” (I have my doubts…BIG doubts), but he has zero credibility – not just because of his tax problems, but because he was the architect of TARP I – an unmitigated disaster.

    The real problem here is when the government started gaming the system to achieve political goals (i.e.: get more people to buy houses…that they couldn't afford), eventually, the system breaks down. To see the guys that screwed it up (Chris Dodd, Barney Frank, TIm Geitner, etc.) all pointing the fingers elsewhere and claiming only THEY can fix the system, is reminiscent of O.J. hitting the golf links to find his wife's murderer.

    Somebody buy these guys some mirrors (so they can see the source of the problem) – and maybe dose them with sodium pentathol before their next news conference.

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