Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
November 24, 2014

The Double Standard Behind ‘Save the Bankers, Save the World’

Paul Krugman asks how policy makers – Timothy Geithner for one – can consider economic policy since the financial crisis a success.

“In both Europe and America, economic policy has to a large extent been governed by the implicit slogan ‘Save the bankers, save the world’ — that is, restore confidence in the financial system and prosperity will follow. And government actions have indeed restored financial confidence. Unfortunately, we’re still waiting for the promised prosperity.”

“Many analysts believe that the burden of high household debt, a legacy of the housing bubble, has been a big drag on the economy … According to many accounts, the biggest roadblock was Mr. Geithner’s consistent opposition to mortgage debt relief — he was, if you like, all for bailing out banks but against bailing out families.”

“In the end, the story of economic policy since 2008 has been that of a remarkable double standard. Bad loans always involve mistakes on both sides — if borrowers were irresponsible, so were the people who lent them money. But when crisis came, bankers were held harmless for their errors while families paid full price.”

  • YONATAN C

    THE REPUBLICANS HAVE DENIED 2.6 MILLION UNEMPLOYED FAMILIES, UNEMPLOYMENT EXTENSION BENEFITS SINCE LAST DECEMBER. WHILE THEY CONTINUED TO HOLE THE EXTENSION BILL “HOSTAGE” IN THE SENATE, THESE FAMILIES HAVE LOST EVERYTHING. FOR THE PAST FIVE MONTHS THEY HAVE USED THESE UNEMPLOYED FAMILIES AS BARGAINING CHIPS FOR POLITICAL LEVERAGE TO FURTHER THEIR PARTY’S POLITICAL AGENDA. MILLIONS OF THESE FAMILIES HAVE FACED EVICTIONS, HOME FORECLOSURES, PERSONAL BANKRUPTCIES, AND HOMELESSNESS IN THE PROCESS. THE REPUBLICANS HAVE DELIBERATELY MADE DELAY AFTER DELAY, MONTH AFTER MONTH, SO THAT EVENTUALLY THE BILL WOULD BE TOO LATE TO VOTE ON IN THE SENATE. THEY HAVE STOOD ASIDE, WHILE THESE FAMILIES SUFFERED AND STRUGGLED TO FEED AND SHELTER THEIR CHILDREN. THEY PUT THEIR POLITICAL AGENDA BEFORE THE WELFARE OF THESE NEEDY FAMILIES. THEY HAVE DEMONSTRATED A TOTAL LACK OF COMPASSION AND COMMON HUMAN DECENCY. I ENCOURAGE ALL AMERICANS WHO HAVE BEEN AFFECTED BY THIS BILL, OR KNOW SOMEONE WHO HAS SUFFERED BECAUSE OF THIS ISSUE, TO NOT VOTE FOR THE REPUBLICAN PARTY IN THE NEXT ELECTION. THEY HAVE SHOWN US THAT THEY DO NOT CARE ABOUT US, LET’S NOT VOTE FOR THEM..

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