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Can't know the facts without a fact sheet

The White House's official fact sheet on the new bank tax is here (pdf). It's a reminder that this isn't some mega-populist innovation on Obama's part: "The EESA statute that created the TARP requires that by 2013 the President put forward a plan 'that recoups from the financial industry an amount equal to the shortfall in order to ensure that the Troubled Asset Relief Program does not add to the deficit or national debt.'"

Obama is offering his plan a bit early, but he's legally required to offer a plan like this by 2013. The fact sheet, however, makes a valiant effort at spinning this as a radical decision. "The President has no intention of waiting that long," it thunders.

By Ezra Klein  |  January 14, 2010; 11:49 AM ET
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Ezra, I thought you would catch the 'games' WH is playing here.

First, tax is right and I am not disputing that. In fact I am here like NYT Editorial - tax both, banks and bonuses. So WH has a long way to go here.

The real part is actual bank investment under TARP is around $260B or so and substantial part of that is returned with 7 to 8% returns or more. Remaining will come back too. So it is not that 'banks' per say who have caused TARP losses.

It is GM, Chrysler, Fannie Mae, Freddi Mac, GMAC and AIG. And chances of recovering money in all this parade of 'looser' are low.

I think Admin needs to be straight forward here. Because despite this, bank taxes are justified because:
- they caused this recession
- we want to take steps to start avoiding future problems like this and
- it is way to replenish budget deficit.

It is disgusting that this WH engages in 'right policy for wrong reasons' assuming we in public are neophytes, know nothing types!

You need to dig more here 'who's TARP losses' need to be recouped here.

Posted by: umesh409 | January 14, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

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