Kashkari Konquers Kucinich
Listening to a C-Span replay
of the Congressional hearing on Wed, where Shotgun Paulson's strange little Mini-me faced questions that sounded
tough. Unfortunately the questions were not genuinely tough, and the Congresscritters missed a great opportunity to push Kashkari.
Specifically: Kucinich asked Kashkari why we allowed Bank of America to use TARP funds to purchase a Chinese construction company. Good question, and Kucinich framed it in a good nationalist way. Congress intended TARP to help America, not to help China.
Shotgun's Mini-me responded that money is fungible, that you can't trace where each dollar goes; also that he didn't know and didn't care where the money went.
Kucinich showed appropriate outrage, but failed to make the one argument that would have spiked Mini-me. I didn't hear it from the other Congs either.
Here's the irrefutable argument:
"Yes, I understand that money is fungible. But every single Federal subsidy to businesses, schools or individuals places limits on their actions. He who pays the piper calls the tune, which is entirely reasonable. If a school takes Fed money, it must implement special-ed programs. If a university takes Fed research money, it must follow affirmative action requirements and research ethics rules. If a defense contractor takes Fed money, it must favor minority subcontractors. If an individual takes unemployment insurance, he has to look for work. Every single subsidy has similar requirements, and if you don't want to follow those rules, you have to get your money elsewhere. Why then should TARP be the single exception to this standard procedure? It doesn't matter which dollar goes where; if you're taking a subsidy, you have to follow certain rules."
= = = = =
Sidenote: In watching these hearings and other Cong action on Shotgun's Great Nation Robbery, I've come to like and respect Elijah Cummings of Maryland. Cummings has a way of getting straight to the heart of a question, speaking for the common man in common language. Refreshing amid the cautious lawyer-written crap from most other politicians.