Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Misleading America- Repaying TARP and The Myth Behind 'Taxpayer Money'

I'm still tired of hearing our elected officials call it 'taxpayer' money.

We all know very well that once that money is taken from our paychecks, or from our pockets, that the money is no longer ours, it's theirs- the government's.

They never called it taxpayer money before (They = our elected officials).

It was only when they irresponsibly started dishing out big bucks to irresponsible corporations that they decided it was a good idea to start calling it taxpayer money in order to get the taxpayer on their side.

This way, the taxpayer, really feels ownership of the money and directs their furor at the corporations who received the money, not the irresponsible bigwigs in Washington that use it to line their pockets and their districts as a matter of routine.

Now, ten of the nation's biggest banks have just announced that they have been given 'permission' to repay the TARP money (doesn't that sound ridiculous in itself?) that the government, uh, taxpayer, loaned them last year. Among the big banks given the green light to start repaying their debt are JPMorgan Chase & Co., American Express Co., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., U.S. Bancorp, Capital One Financial Corp., Bank of New York Mellon Corp., State Street Corp. and BB&T Corp.

It was a hard lesson to learn, but the above-mentioned have realized, hopefully, that doing business with the government comes with more strings attatched than doing business with Don Corleone.

Personally, I'd rather see the money remain with the banks. Sure they screwed up in a big way and needed a bailout to survive, but at least they have a business plan designed to realize profits.

The federal government has no idea what that means, nor do they care to try.

If Social Security, Medicaid and the VA are the best that the government can do at running a business, then I'll take my chances with leaving the 'taxpayer's money' in the private sector- where the goal of turning profits and rewarding shareholders is the name of the game.

The private sector may have ridiculous expense accounts and enjoy living large (the fruits of hard work), but at least they work to make money in the meantime. In comparison, our elected officials have ridiculous expense accounts and enjoy living large while running record deficits.

Do you ever hear it called taxpayer money when it's Washington's elected elite wasting it on lavish parties and not Citibank?

If a private business went so long without giving investors a return-on-profit, especially without having a business plan geared towards profitability, then that business would lose the faith of it's creditors and shareholders before ultimately winding up bankrupt.

In government the business plan is to realize deficits, not recognize profits, and then to spin the media covereage to their liking before the media reaches out to the American people and tells them what to think.

Now we are supposed to trust the government to not only fix a broken economy, but to also micromanage the most successful private sector in the world to the point where the White House wants to dictate salaries.

Maybe in Venezuela, but in America? I don't think so.

"We need to protect the taxpayer's money!" our elected officials declare.

Talk about misleading America.

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