Bailout | St. Louis Public Radio

Bailout

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 26, 2009 - As of this writing, former financial genius Bernard Madoff sits in the clink awaiting sentencing for defrauding investors of about $50 billion-$65 billon. His attorneys have appealed his incarceration, arguing that justice would be better served were he allowed to reside in his penthouse during this transitional period rather than in a facility designed for less accomplished criminals.

Thus far, the judiciary has been unsympathetic.

Whitney Gipson thanks supporters outside the St. Louis City Justice Center. Gipson is one of three women bailed out of jail by Expect Us activists ahead of Mother's Day. (May 12, 2018)
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Whitney Gipson was one of three women bailed out of jail before Mother’s Day thanks to the efforts of St. Louis activists. Expect Us raised nearly $3,000 through an online fundraiser. 

Members of Expect Us met with other advocates at the St. Louis Justice Center on Saturday. The event included food, children’s activities and short speeches by local demonstrators and leaders, including Democratic Missouri Rep. Bruce Franks.

Gipson, 26, told a small crowd about her experiences while staying at the city’s two jails.

Where the bailouts stand, in 1 graphic

Sep 10, 2012

Planet Money breaks down the "how much they got" and "how much they've paid back" of the bailouts of the financial system and auto industry. Check it out via the link.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, April 1, 2012 - Kirkwood businessman Dave Spence, a Republican candidate for governor, can’t seem to shake the continued focus on his old post on the board of Reliance Bancshares Inc., especially now that he acknowledges that he voted in favor of the bank’s decision in February 2011 to delay paying back $40 million in federal bailout money.

Commentary: Fear itself

Oct 21, 2010

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Oct. 21, 2010 - Many reporters and commentators who analyze the 2010 elections have remarked on an angry electorate. Those who adhere to one or another of the Tea Party factions are considered angry. So are independents who voted for Obama in 2008 but now look to the Republicans, and liberals who believe the president has not done enough. Anger is a powerful emotion, but I would vouchsafe that the electoral mood is also characterized by fear.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Aug. 24, 2010 - The two current lines of attack lobbed at Missouri's two major-party candidates for the U.S. Senate -- Republican Roy Blunt and Democrat Robin Carnahan -- both revolve around the same word: Deceit.

He's accused of misrepresenting his role and votes in the federal bank bailout, while she's under fire for switching her stances on the Bush tax cuts.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Aug. 24, 2009 - Firms that fed off the subprime lending frenzy that devastated the banking system are lining up to collect up to $21 billion in taxpayer funds meant to bail out borrowers now in trouble on their loans.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 11, 2009 - The trouble with free market economics is that the free market doesn't exist. Never has; never will. Like true love or perfect abs, it is an ideal that can be approximated but never fully realized. The reason for that is really quite simple: People cheat.

Adam Smith's "invisible hand" of market self regulation has always been cuffed by the chains of human duplicity. Medieval England, for instance, was terrorized by marauding Vikings who found looting to be more lucrative than trade. Their raids, in turn, gave rise to the institution of knighthood.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 2, 2009 - The United States has more riding on the survival of General Motors than the billions of taxpayer dollars the government is pumping into the now-bankrupt automaker, says T.R. Carr, a former Hazelwood mayor who chairs the department of public administration at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 1, 2009 - Two of Missouri's starkest political opposites -- U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., and U.S. Rep. Todd Akin, R-Town and Country -- were the first to offer their views of the federal bailout deal involving General Motors, which declared bankruptcy Monday.

As a result, it's no surprise that the opinions of the congressman and the senator are polar opposites.

Commentary: Is Obama channeling Cal?

Apr 9, 2009

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, April 9, 2009 - This month's award for the most apt metaphor goes to MSNBC's Keith Olbermann who, upon learning that the president had gone into the business of guaranteeing auto warranties, promptly dubbed him "Cal Worthington Obama." Le mot juste.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 30, 2009 - President Barack Obama is driving a hard bargain with his approach to General Motors and Chrysler, but it could pay dividends for the U.S. auto industry if the companies respond in the right way.

That was the view of economists and others Monday in reaction to the administration's move to set deadlines for the two automakers to restructure their own operations or be forced into "surgical" bankruptcies that would reform the way they do business.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 19, 2009 - Even as the nation fixates on the employee bonuses handed out by taxpayer-bailed-out insurance giant AIG, the key to fixing the nation's economy still hinges on getting the banking system functioning again, says Alice Rivlin, a former vice chairman of the Federal Reserve and budget director for President Bill Clinton.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 19, 2009 - U.S. Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer, R-St. Elizabeth, says he makes no apologies for voting Thursday against legislation that, as he sees it, "raises taxes to try and cover up the Administration’s support for AIG bonuses contained in the so-called stimulus package."

Thursday's vote was 328-93 in favor of imposing a 90 percent rate on the bonuses given to AIG executives, after the firm has gotten tens of billions in federal bailout funds. Democrats overwhelmingly backed the tax hike, while Republicans were split.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 17, 2009 - U.S. Sen. Christopher "Kit" Bond went on the attack today on the Senate floor, blasting "the bonuses being paid to AIG after the taxpayers had to bail out the bank again."

But Bond, R-Mo., also faulted President Barack Obama's administration for "not blocking this misuse of taxpayer money when it approved the release of additional $30 billion for AIG earlier this month and for continuing to fail to address the root of our economic crisis."

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 3, 2009 - The federal government’s new attack on the nation’s frozen credit markets has a difficult-to-understand name with an easy-to-understand price tag: $200 billion.

The program, dubbed the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility (TALF, for short), is a combined effort of the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve that will provide $200 billion to investors to encourage lending to consumers and small businesses. And they’re moving quickly.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 23, 2009 - Speculation that major U.S. banks such as Citigroup and Bank of America could be nationalized has been sending shivers down the economy's already shaky spine.

While the Obama administration has said it does not want to nationalize banks, the concept has been raised by such diverse voices as Sen. Lindsey Graham R-S.C., and Alan Greenspan, former chairman of the Federal Reserve.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 13, 2009 - The Obama administration's honeymoon lasted about as long as a quickie wedding in Tijuana. After only a couple of weeks in harness, even the liberal New York Times has excoriated the most recent plan to fix the financial mess. And while some will lay off the blame on the Bush administration, just remember that Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner was an architect of that plan, too.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 12, 2009 - A wag once described ambiguity as the feeling you get while watching your mother-in-law drive off a cliff in your new car. Perhaps a better -- or, at least, more politically correct -- example might be the sentiments of a St. Louis football fan watching Super Bowl XLIII.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 8, 2009 - Sure, we all know that life isn't fair, but American taxpayers are discovering that life during a recession may be the unfairest time of all.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 5, 2009 - It is becoming increasingly apparent that Gordon Gekko was wrong. Gekko, you'll recall, was the ruthless corporate raider artfully portrayed by Michael Douglas in the Oliver Stone film, Wall Street. At one point, he famously intones, "Greed, for lack of a better word, is good."

If recent financial news is any indication, it turns out that greed, for lack of a better word, is bad.

Graphic shows which Missouri banks got how much money
Beacon graphic | Brent Jones

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 5, 2009 - Banks in Missouri have received more than $641 million as part of the federal bailout so far, but that doesn't mean you can expect to see that money flowing out to would-be loan recipients any time soon.

The amounts of TARP money -- Troubled Asset Relief Program -- range from $295 million to Clayton-based First Banks down to $1 million to Calvert Financial Corp. in Ashland, Mo. The banks reached by the Beacon say they have no specific plans to make public how the funds are used beyond the regular reporting requirements.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Jan. 30, 2009 - Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., doesn't think any financial executive whose company is getting federal bailout funds should earn any more than President Barack Obama -- and she isn't shy about the words she uses to make her case.

"We have a bunch of idiots on Wall Street that are kicking sand in the face of the American taxpayer," she said in an impassioned speech on the Senate floor on Friday. 

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 22, 2008 - WASHINGTON - Now that an assistance package is finally on the way to Detroit's automakers, after weeks of pleading from the Big Three and plenty of heated political rhetoric from both sides of the congressional aisle, a fundamental question remains:

Will this save the U.S. auto industry?

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 19, 2008 - Missouri Sen. Christopher Bond praised the Bush administration on Friday for its plan to lend money to General Motors and Chrysler.

Bond, a Republican who had joined with Democrats to push for help for the carmakers, said the loans would help protect millions of American jobs and prevent irreversible harm to the U.S. economy.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 19, 2008 - Here's what the great auto industry meltdown of 2008 looks like to Darin Gilley, president of Local 1760 of the United Auto Workers: His local has gone from 650 to 15 current active members and is on the verge of dissolving; he is unemployed.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 4, 2008 - In a syndicated column that ran in the Nov. 30 Post-Dispatch, Kathleen Parker reported on a new study by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute that sought to measure the civic literacy of the American public. The findings were predictably grim.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: November 21, 2008 - The auto industry is pulling out all stops to secure a place at the public trough. In the latest development, Congress has given the automakers an ultimatum: No plan no bailout.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: November 21, 2008 - There are no heroes to be found in today's economic crisis, and it won't be over any time soon, says St. Louis economist Murray Weidenbaum.

"I've been saying for some time that this is going to be a long, deep recession; we're not going to come quickly out of it. I hope that some time next year we'll be hitting bottom and the economy will start turning up -- but not dramatically,'' Weidenbaum told the Beacon on Thursday.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: November 20, 2008 - Writing satire in this country is getting to be challenging as the Republican National Committee audits the contents of Sarah Palin's underwear drawer. Or the Bush administration - neo-conservatives who swept into office promising the usual bromides of limited government and fiscal responsibility - saves us from the perils of socialism by urging the Treasury Department to purchase the banking industry.

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