At a White House press conference today, the President said that the proposed bank-tax will help "reimburse American taxpayers who bore the brunt" of last year's government bailout program.
"We want our money back!" Obama went on to exclaim. "And we're going to get it!"
However, if you've been keeping score, you should know by now that most of the money that had been doled out to the banks has already been paid back - with interest! What's more, the Federal Reserve actually hauled in substantial profits from the nations 'big banks' in 2009. [Sadly, these profits have been offset by losses incurred as a result of the failure of AIG and the automakers to pay back the money they had received from TARP. (Incidentally, both GM and Chrysler are exempt from the proposed taxes, as well as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-supported companies seized by regulators in 2008.)]
Okay, so what is the "Willie Sutton" theory? Well it should be pretty obvious by now, but we'll let John Carney explain:
A key rationale for the new tax unveiled by the Obama administration this morning is that the revenues will be used to recoup losses from the TARP program.And of course, these new fees will, in all likelihood, be passed on to the consumers.
The idea is that banks, now flush with profits, should pay for the program that rescued the financial system.
[However], the direct costs to taxpayers from the financial bailout cannot be attributed to the biggest banks, many of which have paid or will likely pay back the TARP funds they received. In many cases, the government earned a decent return on the bailout funds. This was one promise of Hank Paulson that actually panned out.
The losses instead come from AIG, Chrysler, GM, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. And none of these institutions will be subject to the new tax. [Ed. note: Obama has apparently decided that he will levy the new tax on AIG too - however, Freddie, Fannie, and the automakers are to be exempt from the aforementioned tax.]
Which brings us around to the Willie Sutton Theory. A prolific bank robber who carried on a criminal campaign for decades, Sutton was supposedly once asked by reporters why he robbed banks. He is supposed to have said: “Because that’s where the money is.”
And that, ultimately, is why the new tax will fall upon the big banks—they’ve got the money.
Nevertheless, while Obama's economic policies may be a bit discomfiting right now, it could get even worse, as he still has another 3 years to cast himself as the modern-day Robin Hood and to transform the US into a full-fledged socialist country. And that, is even more frightening.
But even more discomfiting than that, is the fact that an overwhelming majority of the mainstream media and the left-wing masses are relishing in this extortion.
It goes without saying that Hugo Chavez and his ilk must also be beaming. For ultimately, Barack Obama has turned out to be the American Socialist these miscreants have long been yearning for.
And thus, I would like to congratulate Mr. Chavez on this most wonderful and magnificent triumph:
My beloved Hugo, 'let your eyes feast upon this glorious moment!' Clearly, even you - in your most fanciful and wildest dreams - couldn't have fathomed that the good ol' USA - once a beacon of freedom and Democracy, would become a socialist and fascist country, in such a short period of time! Ah, yes, my dear Hugo, permit me to borrow [and to slightly alter] a quote from the great American patriot and Revolutionary War hero, John Paul Jones:
'Barack Obama has not yet begun to fight!'
Neil Cavuto: 'Mr. President You Haven't Just Lost Support... You've Lost something more: YOUR SOUL!'