Bailout bill – what next?

Update: Apparently this crisis is so time critical that Congress is taking Tuesday and Wednesday off.

Ok, we know all 9 of our Reps/Senators are here on ColoradoPols right now trying to gauge reaction to today’s defeat and what they should do next. So lets help them out. What do you think the next bill should do?

105 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. twas brillig says:

    Stick it to The Man!

    It’s not only the right thing to do morally and policy-wise, it’s the only way the American people are going to swallow any of this crap. Any bailout has to stick it to these bastards.  

  2. Danny the Red (hair) says:

    next stop Somalia.

  3. DavidThi808 says:

    For any financial institution over a certain size, they can turn the company over to the government – 100%. And when they do so, they must cap all salaries & goodies at 400K and revoke all golden parachutes.

    The government will sell off the pieces and/or turn the company around. If turned around, it will then sell it off on the stock market.

    60% of any profit over a set multiple of the company’s value will then be issued to the shareholders at the time of nationalization. So the shareholders do have an interest in a company being nationalized – but they only see money if there is a substantial profit and after the government is made whole.

    I think that makes more sense than the present plan and would be viewed as acceptable by a lot more of the voters.

    • cologeek says:

      a different term than “nationalizing”.  There is too much negative connotation to that term.  But otherwise it’s not a bad idea.  The only problem I see is finding government bureaucrats who know enough about running a business to make it profitable!

      • Danny the Red (hair) says:

        The government owned the banks, injected capital, but hired private sector managers.

        The Government acted more like a very conservative board of directors prepping a public company for sale.

        It cost 2% of GDP versus the 4% a national banking restructuring usually costs and the 5% the $700 billion equals.

  4. Cartesian Doubt says:

    As we’ve seen from the unbelievable drop on the Dow, NASDAQ, and the S&P today, something has to be done. Too many financial institutions are circling the drain. I’m debating pulling my money out just as a precaution.

    Confidence is low, and getting lower. No matter what deal comes out of Congress, someone’s not going to be happy with the results. The question is, who ends up without a seat when the music stops?

    This isn’t the time for partisanship, but regrettably partisan finger-pointing what we’ll get.  

  5. Ray Springfield says:

    If the bill doesn’t pass, and the ban on naked short selling is lifted this week, then we face the potential for a complete economic collapse.

    National City is being downgraded by Moodys today. Bank of America is shaky as the acquisition of Merrill Kynch may have oevertextended them.

    Markets and banks the world over are declining heavily as I type.Asian markets are off 5%. The UK markets plunged. Germany is bailing out banks.  Delaying this assistance plan may cause an out and out depression.

    Partisan politics needs to be put aside.

    our leaders need to act in the best interest of the USA, even if it means it costs them reelection.

    • Danny the Red (hair) says:

      I was wondering if it was going to be WB or Nat City on friday.

      So I think Nat City is next

      • Ray Springfield says:

        NEW YORK (AP) – Citigroup agreed Monday to purchase Wachovia’s banking operations for $2.1 billion in a deal arranged by federal regulators, making the Charlotte-based bank the latest casualty of the widening global financial crisis.

        The deal greatly expands Citigroup’s retail franchise-giving it a total of more than 4,300 U.S. branches and $600 billion in deposits-and secures its place among the U.S. banking industry’s Big Three, along with Bank of America Corp. and JPMorgan Chase & Co.

        But it comes at a cost: Citigroup Inc. said it will slash its quarterly dividend in half to 16 cents. It also will dilute existing shareholders by selling $10 billion in common stock to shore up its capital position.

        In addition to assuming $53 billion worth of debt, Citigroup will absorb up to $42 billion of losses from Wachovia’s $312 billion loan portfolio, with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. agreeing to cover any remaining losses. Citigroup also will issue $12 billion in preferred stock and warrants to the FDIC.

        The remainder of Wachovia will include its asset management, retail brokerage and certain select parts of its wealth management businesses, including the Evergreen and Wachovia Securities franchises. It will continue to be a public company under the Wachovia name.

    • DavidThi808 says:

      It was that the shaky banks are in danger of going under. Why is it they assume that no bank should ever go out of business? The ones that made very stupid decisions need to go out of business.

      With that said, we want to minimize the impact on the rest of us. But why does it have to be this way? Why not nationalize the ones in trouble?

    • ThillyWabbit says:

      Exactly. Had Nancy Pelosi not caved on every tenet of the Dem counter-offer to Paulson’s lunacy to win Republican votes that it turns out she didn’t have anyway, the thing would have passed with unanimous Democratic support and a fair amount of Republican crossover.

      Read the bill. Most of the things promised on Sunday night were actually missing in the text on Monday morning. Those that were included were completely gutted.

      All to get Republican votes that John Boehner and Roy Blunt promised but didn’t deliver–and a lot of those no votes were for the same reasons as the Dem no votes.

      Now we get a chance to pass a bipartisan bill that doesn’t completely screw taxpayers and takes into consideration more than what five people in a White House conference room think is the right way to fix the crisis.

      • Gilpin Guy says:

        is that McCain looked like a complete ass bragging about what a go-to guy he was and how Obama was on the sidelines and then boom the big victory gets called off.  They are blaming Pelosi but they were itching to take down McCain.  Unbelievable cannibalism going on in the Republican ranks.  Nasty stuff that makes Republicans look like doublecrossers and out of touch all at the same time.

  6. Middle of the Road says:

    I read a plan earlier today by Joseph Stiglitz and these are four points I would like to see fleshed out more thoroughly.

    There are four fundamental problems with our financial system, and the Paulson proposal addresses only one. The first is that the financial institutions have all these toxic products–which they created–and since no one trusts anyone about their value, no one is willing to lend to anyone else. The Paulson approach solves this by passing the risk to us, the taxpayer–and for no return. The second problem is that there is a big and increasing hole in bank balance sheets–banks lent money to people beyond their ability to repay–and no financial alchemy will fix that. If, as Paulson claims, banks get paid fairly for their lousy mortgages and the complex products in which they are embedded, the hole in their balance sheet will remain. What is needed is a transparent equity injection, not the non-transparent ruse that the administration is proposing.

    The third problem is that our economy has been supercharged by a housing bubble which has now burst. The best experts believe that prices still have a way to fall before the return to normal, and that means there will be more foreclosures. No amount of talking up the market is going to change that. The hidden agenda here may be taking large amounts of real estate off the market–and letting it deteriorate at taxpayers’ expense.

    The fourth problem is a lack of trust, a credibility gap. Regrettably, the way the entire financial crisis has been handled has only made that gap larger.

    • Danny the Red (hair) says:

      With lack of oversight and transparency the cause of the current problem, how could they make a proposal so short in both? If a quick consensus is required, why not include provisions to stop the source of bleeding, to aid the millions of Americans that are losing their homes? Why not spend as much on them as on Wall Street? Do they still believe in trickle-down economics, when for the past eight years money has been trickling up to the wizards of Wall Street? Why not enact bankruptcy reform, to help Americans write down the value of the mortgage on their overvalued home? No one benefits from these costly foreclosures

      By issuing preferred shares with warrants (options), one reduces the public’s downside risk and insures that they participate in some of the upside potential. This approach is not only proven, it provides both incentives and wherewithal to resume lending

      Finally, we need to impose a special financial sector tax to pay for the bailouts conducted so far. We also need to create a reserve fund so that poor taxpayers won’t have to be called upon again to finance Wall Street’s foolishness.

      I like the ideas, but this is not a fleshed out plan.  

      However, you might like Nouriel Roubini’s plan.

  7. Danny the Red (hair) says:

    Value destroyed in the market today $1.2 Trillion.

    How much value will be destroyed tommorow?

    If its 600 points it will be another Trillion.

    and the next day.

    And I haven’t even mentioned the real problem–the credit market.

    • Danny the Red (hair) says:

      what’s a few Zeros between friends.

    • indipol says:

      in a totally predictable bounce. C’mon, the $1.2T number is meaningless and you know it.  No “value” was “destroyed” yesterday any more than new “value” was created out of thin air today.  This is a f’ing shell game and you know it more than anybody who comments here.  

      I totally agree that the real issue here is the credit markets, not the equity markets.  But IMO the only thing to panic about here is everybody panicking.  The credit markets can sleep for a few days.  If a week or even a month or two of locked-down credit markets is all it takes to send us into a depression, do you really think a huge gov infusion was going to save us from that anyway?  Not bloody likely.

      • Nancy L Baldwin says:

        The money isn’t gone.  It just belongs to somebody else now.

      • Danny the Red (hair) says:

        If this was just about the equity market I would say screw the banks (and investors for that matter)

        But a month of frozen credit is enough to send us into a depression.  Money is blood–it must flow.  If it doesn’t, I don’t care how healthy the organs or strong the muscles are, you’re dead.

  8. Laughing Boy says:

    You should all lose your jobs and come work more than your excruciating 120 days a year.  You are all a disgrace, and your job is to protect us from crap like this – damn your special interest money on both sides of the aisle.

    Wanna box?

  9. Danny the Red (hair) says:

    The TED spread hit the worst level in the history of the index today.

    The TED spread is the difference between 3 month US treasury rates and the 3 month Eurodollar futures contract.

    The Eurodollar future is based on the LIBOR index.  LIBOR is the London InterBank Offered Rate–an index of the rate that banks lend (in $) to each other.  Though this all sounds like a European sideline, every bank in the world manages their risk to 3-month LIBOR.

    The TED spread essentially measures the percieved credit risk between the very largest banks in the world and the US government.

    Typical spreads were about 20bp (basis point 1/100 of a %) in normal times popping up to maybe 50bp under moderate stress.  In times of high stress (post 9/11 for instance) they have popped as high as 3% after the 1987 crash.

    Last year about this time when the banking crisis was starting to frighten the cogniceti (see Jim Cramer) spreads jumped up and have bounced between 1%-2% for the last year.

    Today they topped 3.5%

    • DavidThi808 says:

      …isn’t that a reasonable reaction to the present instability of the banks? I think people got so used to the credit market being so safe that they forgot that they are part of the free market and therefore will have cycles.

      I think we can wait a couple of days to see if we can get a much more sensible approach. Stock prices are being hit, but that is what is supposed to happen when a boom ends. Stocks have to get re-priced now that a lot fo the paper they hold is being downgraded.

      Asia is down 4 – 5% which hurts, but is not the end of the world. We’re in uncharted territory here and it would be nice to know what the answer is – but I think we have to put in more effort to come up with what we think is a better way to handle this.

      I don’t trust the bozos that brought us to this point to know the best wya out of it. So a blank check to Paulson is, IMHO, a poor approach.

      • Danny the Red (hair) says:

        that kind of premium is unheard of–never seen it before.

        When everyone is “reasonable” and doesn’t lend to other international banks–not US mortgage lenders, but flagship national banks without paying a TED spread more associated with junk bonds, we’ve got real problems.

        I opposed the Paulson plan, but Paulson+ was acceptable.  I would have preferred my plan or the Roubini or Stiglitz or any of a dozen others, but time is of the essence.  And under no circumstances should this have been brought to the floor only to fail.

  10. Sir Robin says:

    with both our national capital, but also global capital. Unfortunately, I’m not sure in this screwed up country the politicians will do the right thing.

    Can anyone say…third world country with nukes? I suggest we put someone steady, and with good judgement at the helm….and it ain’t McCain!

  11. Go Blue says:

    That could have easily replaced the “drill baby drill” mantra of the Republican party. They just burned through my retirement funds today with their little $1.2 trillion temper tantrum.  

    • Laughing Boy says:

      You’ll get it back. Wait two weeks.

      • Go Blue says:

        just knee-jerking right now.  

      • Yokel says:

        When I looked at the roll, I wasn’t too surprised to see Western Dems in the “No” column.  They gained some points from me today.

        And I have said we need to let it burn.  A bail out this time will only subsidize further financial jackassery.  

        Invest big bucks in the “bad” debt for pennies on the dollar, and when real estate comes back, you’ll make a pretty penny.  If they’re selling this to us as the government’s plan, why can’t the free market do it?  And why can’t I invest in it?

  12. TeacherTaxpayer says:

    Great job Congress!  94 House Democrats, including many Chairs, refused “CHANGE”.  Obama voted “present”, and offered no direction in one of the most historic moments in American History!

    McCain had enough leadership to understand this issue was worth suspending his campaign. What did Obama do?  Nothing. McCain helped package a compromise–yet it failed. Politics as usual.

    This is a very important video, are you open enough? Please google all facts– they are easily verifiable!


  13. Western Way says:

    Does anyone remember what I said two weeks ago?

    I look at what is being posted on this website and what politicians (yes, you all are looking) are saying and all I can do is shake my head…  

    People, THIS IS GLOBAL! Banks are now going under in Europe (the “Benelux Bailout”) or consolidated (by BNP Paribas, Lloyds TSB, USB, etc.) and the Asian markets are already down 5%.  The US Dollar is the reserve currency for the enire world (which is our one saving grace right now), so the value of the dollar effects not only us, but it has global implications.

    We lost a TRILLION DOLLARS today, in case you can’t add (I’m referring to those of you who voted against the bill) that is more than 700 Billion.  

    You know what YOU politicians need to be doing?  WHAT IS BEST FOR THE COUNTRY!

    Speaker Pelosi’s comments were irresponsible and childish (not to mention both her and Boehner should have had a head count) and even though members who voted against the bill (3 to 1 voted against were in tight races) should have showed leadership and the ability to make difficult decisions, but with the stakes so high, I cannot believe someone in a leadership position would have said that before a vote of this magnitude.

    • DavidThi808 says:

      What happend is we learned that there was a trillion dollars we never had. Yes it’s a giant problem but it’s not like we all had a robber come in our houses and steal our cash.

      • Western Way says:

        Yes you are right that it could recover in a short period of time (if we are lucky) but the signs are not good.  Credit Markets are frozen WORLD WIDE!!!!   Central Banks around the world (it’s amazing how they can do this and our Congress can’t get 12 votes) have come up with a plan to inject 620 Billion into world economies and have made it easier for central banks to loan each other liquid capital, because even they are beginning to see red on their balance sheets.  

        People have lost their entire retirment portfolio’s today (I’m not exaggerating, I actually personally recieved a few of those).

    • Western Way says:

      Those global ramifications I talked about (except the Asian markets dropping 5%) happened before the bill failed, with the expectation of it passing.  Sweet, huh?

  14. TeacherTaxpayer says:

    Financial data does not suppor that fact. Loans are still being issued according to financial reports.  Where are you getting your information, from the bail-out sharks?  Hey, weren’t we supposed to hurry up with all this, or we would have some major depression last week, this weekend, this monday, etc—  so some banks became bigger.  The market IS correcting itself! Bad Debt is being swallowed! Hang tough and protect against Chinese Loans. Hey, if we keep borrowing– what if a national secuirty issue came up? Any borrowing power left?  

    • Danny the Red (hair) says:

      Since you are new here I will explain.  I worked in this bond and cash investment business for a long time.  I don’t anymore so I don’t have a vested interest other than as an American who relies on the economy to get the money to pay my mortgage.

      I get my information from statistical sources I used when my team managed $20 Billion is assets. I had top performance managing cash for 10 years.

      In addition I was a bank analyst and worked with regulators in Europe.  I spoke at treasury conferences on international liquidity.  As an analyst I started doing  risk management audits before most people knew what VAR was.

      Given your declarative authority on this crisis I assume you have some background in this field.

      There is a credit crisis–outside of soveriegn’s and soveriegn collateralized, there is no bid.

      • TeacherTaxpayer says:

        i read the federal reserve loan amounts show steady growth. Also Cavuto.

        • Danny the Red (hair) says:

          what you posted

          1. over a month old stats

          2. consumer credit not institutional credit

          Neil Cavuto? isn’t he a reporter? On Fox?

          Not exactly a credible economist.

          That was your last courtesy post.

      • Jambalaya says:

        …Danny con Red, I have read some of your posts and I have mostly found them useful and readable (sundry metaphors aside!).  But, because you repeatedly mention your fomer life in the bond and cash investment business (people formerly paid you for your advice!), I must ask………why did people decide to stop paying you for your advice?

        • Danny the Red (hair) says:

          My firm had 4 seperate CEOs in less than 5 years.

          Each guy shakes the cage, brings in his own rats, and watches them fight each other.  Once things start to settle bring in new guy.

          I decided to go to law school part time after 9-11 (Life event and all) and kept working in the business for a few more years utill I hated them and they hated me.  My shareholders continued to love me and I loved them back.  

          I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do then, but I knew I was sick of where I was.  I’d love to work in public policy, but as a 40 year old liberal who worked in capital markets.  I can’t afford to pay my dues.

          As to finance, I loved the work and would go back if I could find a small stable operation where there was less institutional politics.  I interviewed for the CIO position for the Denver Employee Retirement Plan  last year (think PERA for denver), that would serve the public service mission I am on and put me back in the markets.  I would love a chance to write regulation but I’d want to do it outside the admistrative beuacracy, maybe legislative counsel.

          • Jambalaya says:

            Thanks for the info….none of my business, of course, but I was curious.   I think you shouid aim higher than legislative counsel (council?) in my opinion.  Good luck and whatnot.

            • Danny the Red (hair) says:

              I’m just aiming for a job that pays th bills–working for myself isn’t cutting it.

              And it is counsel–A lawyer or group of lawyers giving legal advice

    • Western Way says:

      Normally, I disagree with almost every single one of my fellow bloggers on this site, but today, we all agree on something: a bail-out was needed and didn’t get passed.  The political bickering that followed was ridiculous (I said I shake my head earlier, because this blog was far more civil then anything that was coming out of congress)–on both sides.  Both sides are to blame for this bill not getting passed.  

      Politics was one thing that should have been left at the door of the House Chamber today, but sadly it wasn’t.

      I’m an ardent McCain supporter, but I’m with Danny on this one, because this is too important to try to score points on.  

      • TeacherTaxpayer says:

        Where are you getting your info Western Way?  I disagree that there is a majority support for the bailout! Market will recover, but bad loans never go away!  

        • Western Way says:

          I don’t trust liberal media bias and are you stalking me?  

          But also, I really do believe that President Bush, Paulson and Bernanke are trying to do the right thing for the country.  I truly believe that.

          Are you a Ron Paul person? Because you sound like one.

        • Western Way says:

          Is it because I am a Sarah Palin Supporter and Defender (Comments 20-41)?  Or is it because I support the bill in question, just like Tommy T (aka Tom Tancredo–whom I’ve also defended Comment 45).  What’s the deal bro?

  15. Barron X says:


    Most folks posting here have money in IRA’s, own a stock portfolio, or plan to buy a new car on credit next year.  

    Yes, for that type of investor or consumer, the bailout is a necessary evil.

    But Congressmen are looking at an election coming up, and most voters don’t believe that they have all that much at risk.  

    They may drive a 10-year old car, may have already had their house foreclosed, and see the bailout as welfare for folks who don’t need it as much as they do.  

    For all the pain meltdown will bring, most Congressmen cannot be seen as handing another million to a 27-year-old who is already making $2 Million, or they will lose in November.  


    This is going to hurt your feelings.  Sit down.

    As long as you support the Congressman-for-life program, reelecting folks because they are the incumbent,

    and because they belong to your party,

    this is the governance you are going to get.  

    Unless you vote 3rd party in 5 weeks, you are deluding yourselves about wanting better government.


  16. Nancy L Baldwin says:

    The market is performing just fine.  Sit back, relax and plant a garden.  

    You are going to need it.

    I suggest a vegatable garden though.  No flowers.

  17. Ralphie says:

    Congress is taking a break for Rosh Hashanah.

    Are you suggesting that Congress should only take Christian holidays off?

    Many Congresspeople are still in town and can work on revised language, if that’s what it’s going to take.

  18. Sir Robin says:

    would have been $666B, and frankly, from this administratiuon, it would have been more readily understandable.

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