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Mike hopes to see the world turned upside down through local communities banding together for social change, especially churches which have recognized the radical calling to be good news to the poor, to set free the prisoners and oppressed, and to become the social embodiment of the reign of God on earth as it is in heaven. He lives with the blessed memory of his wife, in Durham, NC, and has three adult children living in three different states. He also shares his life with the Mt. Level Missionary Baptist Church in Durham, the faculty and students of Shaw University Divinity School in Raleigh, NC, and the faithful fans of Duke and Baylor Basketball in his neighborhood.

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Monday, December 01, 2008

Bailout 9: Will Obama's Advisers Learn from Their Own Mistakes?

The New York Times printed a good editorial expressing the reservations I share with many people about the President-Elect's chosen economic advisers. Larry Summers helped to craft the deregulation of derivatives. Timothy Geithner played a role in scheming the strange and problematic bailouts of financial institutions in the past couple of months. Neither one of them gave early warning of the housing bubble that has caused our current crisis. Will they do better next time? We must make sure our representatives know we are concerned, and let Mr. Obama know that he needs to be listening to more than the same people who were architects of a building in ruins.

Obama's critics jumped all over a phrase he used in a conversation with a plumber's assistant in Ohio. He remarked that everyone in financial difficulty, from top to bottom, would benefit together if we "spread the wealth around." Dean Baker points out that Secretary Paulson, Chairman Bernanke, and the Bailout planners are busy with their own plans to "spread the wealth around." Who is using government to transfer wealth from some citizens to others? Wells Fargo, a beneficiary of the bailout (announced that ten top executives of Wachovia) the bank they were able to buy because of the bailout, would be eligible to receive an average of $10 million each for severance. That money is coming from somewhere. I thought the banks were out of funds. Oh, yeah--taxpayers have to pay it. Talk to your representatives.

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