Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tim Geithner, still treading water

Just in case you forgot, Tim Geithner is still full of shit. Here he is complaining about his critics in a recent New York magazine interview:

“This is a deeply complicated world, in a fog of gray and ambiguity,” he says. “It’s easier for people to absorb the simple narrative of the black and white. And for them the black and white is, ‘Those are the people that got us in the mess; you saved them and they paid themselves billions in bonuses, and they should have gone to jail, and they are still walking around.’ I don’t know anything powerful enough to overwhelm that simple narrative.”

 Italics mine. So what is Geithner's response to this trenchant criticism that has plagued his tenure? This consistent, but "simple" critique that he has been given years to formulate a sophisticated response to? Well, uh, he literally DOES NOT HAVE ONE. He says he doesn't know "anything powerful enough to overwhelm that simple narrative." Well Tim, you're in the middle of a one-on-one interview. You are being given an exclusive opportunity to make your argument here. Why don't you use this very specific time with a nationally-renowned journalist to make your case directly to the American public? No? You got nothing? You're full of shit? Very well then. Move along folks. Nothing to see here.

[For the record, I was in favor of some kind of bank bailout. You can't cut off your nose to spite your face, and I wasn't willing to let the American economy fall into the abyss just so I could punish a few bankers. However, the structure of the bailout was abysmal. The bailout should have a) taken steps to reduce moral hazard in the future and prevent the "too-big-to-fail" phenomenon b) relieved homeowners of mortgage debt on a $1 to $1 basis for every buck given to the bankers c) taken substantial steps to prevent the use of the money to be paid as bonuses to management and d) required the firing of management and the replacement of the board of directors upon condition of accepting bailout funds. Since the bailout did NONE of those things, and Geithner was the face of opposition to those conditions, I say good riddance to bad rubbish.]

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