Monday, April 13, 2009

Stressed out

Elizabeth Warren is the chair of the TARP Congressional Oversight Panel. Here are some highlights from an interview she gave to the Boston Globe:
There's no discussion of the overall policy. Instead, there are specific programs that are announced, and from that, it's necessary to reason backwards to figure out what the goal must have been. It's like a "Jeopardy!" game. If this is the answer, what was the question? It's frustrating because without a clearly articulated goal and identified metrics to determine whether the goal is being accomplished, it's almost impossible to tell if a program is successful.
On the other hand, not discussing the overall policy makes failure more difficult! Then, when asked if she could summarize what the TARP is supposed to do, she replies:
No. And neither is Treasury. Treasury has given us multiple contradictory explanations for what it's trying to accomplish.
She finally goes on to ask for public support so that Treasury will be more forthcoming. But she doesn't say what form this public support should take, nor why Treasury should care even if they do. Congress is supposed to be the voice of the public, they set up the panel when they gave the $700bn. The fact that the panel can't force the information from Treasury, and that she accepted the job knowing that she had no power to force disclosure, means it's just a exercise in BS.

Ms. Warren should resign, loudly.
(h/t firedoglake)


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