FROM Damon Silvers
The Bank Bailout Is Over but the Fallout Continues The Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP , officially ended last Sunday. It was rolled out two years ago in the midst of a worldwide financial panic by George Bush’s Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. He said $700 billion to bail out the banks, and Congress gave it to him. Now Senators and Representatives members of both parties, and the Obama Administration are playing an enormous political price.
The Bank Bailout Is Over but the Fallout Continues The Troubled Asset Relief Program was rolled out two years ago in the midst of a worldwide financial panic by George Bush's Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. Introduced as a $700 billion bank bailout, it only spent a bit over half that much before officially ending last Sunday, and it might end up costing just $29 billion. Cheap at the price if it staved off a Depression, why is it one of the most unpopular programs in history? TARP saved Wall Street, AIG, General Motors and Chrysler, but failed to keep homeowners out of foreclosure and banks still are not lending. Now Senators and Representatives members of both parties, and the Obama Administration are playing an enormous political price. Do bankers getting bigger bonuses than ever think the government will bail them out next time? What are the prospects of that?
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.