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Credit

From the NY Times:

The Fed is expected to start the first phase of the program, which will provide $200 billion in loans to investors, in early March.

But analysts question whether this approach will be enough to unlock the credit that the economy needs to pull out of a deepening recession. Some worry it may benefit only select investors at taxpayer expense.

Can I just say how annoying this is? Let’s take a moment to identify the problem. I’m no economist, but apparently in this particular context the problem is that the credit markets are frozen because banks and other private lenders are unwilling to lend.

Okay, let’s take a moment to identify the ramifications. Again, I’m not asserting this; this is what I’m being told by countless “experts” on every occasion: the consequences of inaction are deep recession and possible economic depression, lasting several years, threatening tens of millions of Americans and placing the economic and national security of our country in peril.

Seems pretty clear-cut.

So given the consequences, why are we diddling around, slobbering on the shoes of the banks, trying to incentivize them to give – even while they keep our carrots for themselves? Jesus. This isn’t a fucking show and tell – this is a serious problem. What’s costing us hundreds of billions could be done with the swoosh of a pen if we simply force the banks to lend through regulatory or legislative means.  For that matter – and especially because the banks are nearly insolvent anyway – why shouldn’t the federal government nationalize a major bank and start providing loans themselves, directly, to anyone who may qualify? Cut out the fuck-up middlemen and do it directly.

It’s not that complex.

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