It Was All a Lie

Matt Taibbi is Making Sense..

It was all a lie – one of the biggest and most elaborate falsehoods ever sold to the American people. We were told that the taxpayer was stepping in – only temporarily, mind you – to prop up the economy and save the world from financial catastrophe. What we actually ended up doing was the exact opposite: committing American taxpayers to permanent, blind support of an ungovernable, unregulatable, hyperconcentrated new financial system that exacerbates the greed and inequality that caused the crash, and forces Wall Street banks like Goldman Sachs and Citigroup to increase risk rather than reduce it. The result is one of those deals where one wrong decision early on blossoms into a lush nightmare of unintended consequences. We thought we were just letting a friend crash at the house for a few days; we ended up with a family of hillbillies who moved in forever, sleeping nine to a bed and building a meth lab on the front lawn.

62 thoughts on “It Was All a Lie”

  1. Woo hoo?

    I get his point but I had a little trouble with his analogy. It confused my brain this morning, not something too hard to do these days. Maybe it will make sense after a little pondering.

    It’s kinda hard for me to imagine these rich, down on their luck corps as hillbillies cooking meth. Was that who they were supposed to represent?

    Seems to me that we humble homeowners invited some rich, down on their luck friends to move in until they could get back on their feet and soon they owned our houses and we found ourselves out in a tent in the yard having to cook meth to get by until they had us hauled off the jail.

    Leave it to me to over think something.

  2. And a comment on the discussion about the unattractive inmate from yesterday…

    “I think some people start looking on the outside the way they are on the inside.”

    I think I’d have to agree with Chloe here. In my 11 years working in corrections, I can’t remember feeling like there was a majority of really unattractive people in jail/prison. Seems they were pretty average but after a little peak into some of their souls, attractiveness took a dive.

    Also, orange just doesn’t favor most people’s complexions. Avoiding having to wear that color helps keep me on the straight and narrow. And if you think about it, do you remember any really attractive mug shots of some of our attractive celebrities who have been arrested? Some of those pics were kinda frightening.

    I also noticed that the AA male was far more concerned with their appearance. Many had their orange scrubs all neat and pressed. Never found out how they managed that. They were very concerned with their skin. I’d get a guy in my office because they found one pimple and I’d have to get a magnifying glass just to find it.

    For too many AAs, jail was just considered a social center, just another meeting place in the hood, even a rite of passage.

  3. httpv://

    Sunday Serendipity.

    Pluck the strings and raise your voice in song. Hauntingly beautiful. Enjoy!

  4. Yeah but:

    We thought we were just letting a friend crash at the house for a few days; we ended up with a family of hillbillies who moved in forever, sleeping nine to a bed and building a meth lab on the front lawn.

    If you have to use ethnic slurs to make your point how well thought out is your point.
    Besides It doesn’t even fit the problem.
    It is much closer to taking in your destitute elderly aunt and she demands breakfast in bed then tells you how lazy and worthless you are when you don’t put a flower in a bud vase on her morning breakfast tray.


  5. Besides cooking meth is a productive enterprise that produces something people want. I’m not sure that mega bankers are so productive.


  6. I was serenely independent and content before we met;
    Seldom had a second thought much less a real debt
    I’ve grown accustomed to the look;
    Accustomed to the feel
    Accustomed to my stuff. 😉

    With apologies to Lerner&Loewe

    Thanks for all the sound stuff advice yesterday. Craig, especially the Carlin,
    laughed my ass off, had never seen it.

    Update: garage still a work in progress,
    car close to fitting. 😉

  7. Taibbi’s hillbilly comment demonstrates just how effective the culture war has been for the wall street money people. They have effectively devided the nation up into little groups. Taibbi is not interested in solving the problem, he just wants to get money out of his little group

    Divide your potential opponents and you will live forever.


  8. Tiabbi’s article in it’s entirety is just proof positive, as if any were needed, that when banks become too big to fail, they have become too big to exist.

    His hillbilly analogy may be somewhat over the top, but then so were the shenanigans pulled by the banks.

    I simply refer to them as grifters with Rolexes.

  9. eProf2 says:
    01/05/2013 at 4:20 PM

    Now I know why we have an RV and take our “stuff” on wheels with us, not to mention our very own bed and breakfast, too. Good luck, Jace, down sizing. No, don’t bring any that “stuff” to southern AZ, we have enough swap meets already. :-)


    I’m betting that you have a little car or pick up trailing along behind that RV.Practically required, you know.
    Travel northwest towards the big blue river and I’ll fill it up for you. 😉


  10. Bill Woerlee says:
    01/05/2013 at 4:28 PM

    jace 01/05/2013 at 8:59 AM

    Yawn, old hat. You can go to Zimbabwe and get yourself a whole roll of Z$100tr notes and pay that store clerk with a dozen or so notes and still end up owing on the balance.

    Come on, get with the program young fella. 😀

    Bill Woerlee,
    This represents the devaluation of a currency on an unbelievable scale, and would seem to indicate that the makers of ‘Monoply’ may soon be printing our currency. This is not exactly a path to consumer confidence.

    Being called young fella, just makes my day. Good on you. 😉

  11. I don’t call ethnic slurs “over the top”
    I call them inappropriate. Worse than that in this case they are very much counter productive if you are really interested in solving the issue. It is going to take a bunch of hillbillies getting outraged before anything will get changed. And that is just a political fact.
    For me everything he wrote beyond the “hillbilly” comment wasn’t read. I suspect that was deliberate on his part as it effectively screened out everybody but the liberal elite types he wants to reach. They are his money spot and he is not interested in taking the conversation out to a larger audience where we might get something done. The sad thing is Tiabbi has become the caracature of an investigative reporter.


  12. “For me everything he wrote beyond the “hillbilly” comment wasn’t read. I suspect that was deliberate on his part as it effectively screened out everybody but the liberal elite types he wants to reach. They are his money spot and he is not interested in taking the conversation out to a larger audience where we might get something done. The sad thing is Tiabbi has become the caracature of an investigative reporter.”

    Jack, you hit the nail on the head! Was kinda thinking the same thing. But I did go read his entire article because I was still trying to make it fit his analogy. I’m also wondering what is new about what he is reporting??? We all had that figured out a long time ago. Who is just waking up to that reality and what rock did they find to hide under?

  13. “I don’t call ethnic slurs “over the top”
    I call them inappropriate.”

    An inappropriate ‘metaphor’ Jack, but I don’t think that was the point of the article.

    I admire you for the point you’re trying to make, but aren’t you the same guy that said it would be nice if Mississippi would secede from the Union.

    Do you have any idea how many times I’ve heard many here slur the south? Including you!

    That article made a good point, and had nothing to do with so-called hillbillies.

    By the way, I’ve heard you use that expression (hill billy) here at the trail more than once. I’ve also heard you say the police force are ‘all’ racist.

    We all have our pet peeves. Heaven knows, everyone knows what mine are. But why not look at the message of the article, instead of the poorly chosen ‘metaphor’.

  14. While the Fed prints money there is an interesting loop hole where the Treasury can mint coins and there is no limit on the value. Which has given raise to an interesting discussion on the internet tubes about a trillion dollar platinum coin.

    Why We Must Go Off the Platinum Coin Cliff

    If Republicans start issuing a list of demands that must be met before they will raise the debt ceiling, Obama should simply say that he will issue platinum coins as necessary to pay government bills if he cannot borrow. But, to avoid causing long-term inflation expectations to skyrocket, he should pledge that he will have the Treasury issue enough bonds to buy back all the newly issued currency as soon as it is allowed to do so.
    And then he should offer to sign a bill revoking his authority to issue platinum coins — so long as that bill also abolishes the debt ceiling. The executive branch will give up its unwarranted power to print if the legislative branch will give up its unwarranted restriction on borrowing to cover already appropriated obligations.

  15. Good grief people , the banks and the big money people have been screwing over the American people for a long time , they pay off the politicians to be able to keep the scam going .
    There , no analogies ,no mincing of words ,

  16. Agree, mqw.

    And as for this “It was all a lie – one of the biggest and most elaborate falsehoods ever sold to the American people.”

    I don’t think the American people ‘bought’ it. I don’t think we had a choice in the matter.

    ‘Transparent Administration’ has taken on a whole new meaning.

  17. I am off to celebrate Epiphany.

    Probably as close as I will come to having one. 😉

  18. I’ve called corporations and bankers about every name I can invent. My faith in politicians to actually do anything until there is a massive crash as pretty well gone up in a puff of smoke. If and when the full crisis hits, it will be the guys on the bottom who get hurts most. Wake me when things change.

    And now my predictions are up on the Blank and White site. This season everything is less that beautiful at the movies so take your angst in your favorite form.

  19. ha i was hoping somebody could explain the hillbilly reference, i didn’t quite get it either. maybe this category should be “Is Matt Making Sense”

  20. Craig, I have this problem with trying to use my left brain too much, something we’ve been discussing at the “Swamp”

    When something doesn’t make logical sense, it holds me up, distracts me. It’s kinda like when I used to watch horror movies and the dang woman wouldn’t kick off her high heel shoes to run from the monster. I’d be screaming at her to ditch the shoes and put into gear. It just ruined the movie for me because I didn’t think that anyone would be that stupid.

    I could deal with the idea that it was a vampire chasing her and that didn’t make much sense either but that wasn’t really supposed to.

  21. I watched Snuffy this morning and having Ms Van Sustern on does nothing for the conversation. She appears more rational then her Fox colleagues but she’s not and her babbling nonsense on the issue of gun safety should be evidence enough.

    Plus her defense of Fox for their attacks on Clinton was to blame Clinton. She has made her place as a sensationalist and she has no spot in a conversation about politics except in an airport bar.

    As for George Will ..ack!

  22. Iraq was a big lie , libya was a big lie,
    Sryria is a big lie ,
    Clinton was part of all those big lies ,
    Guess we will have to wait on wiki leaks for the truth

  23. Taibbi needs a better editor. A better analogy should have been used. But..

    Hillbilly culture is everywhere these days Duck Dynasty, the Moonshiners and the soon to be West Virgina realty show.

    Unlike the word ‘cracker’ the use of the word hillbilly has not been designated hate speech.

  24. Wonder what Teddy Roosevelt would have done in 2009? Me thinks he would have kicked some Wall Street butt. He busted up JP Morgan and Rockefeller

  25. For those of you here who’d like to read a discussion on the substance of Taibbi’s article, there’s an interesting one, IMO, going on over at huffpo. You’ll have to scroll down a bit as the article was posted several days ago.

  26. I don’t think most hillbillies would be offended by being called hillbillies. Most of us river rats aren’t offended by being called river rats. We are offended by someone saying we would move in with our rich relatives or friends and mooch off them. We may be poor but we are proud.

  27. The only difference between Zimbabwe and Washington on the matter of economic practice is that Magabe, for all his faults, is honest about plundering his economy for the benefit of the few. In the process, his treasury has printed off ZWD100tr notes like they were sheets on a bog roll. Similar to Hank Paulson and his Wall Street cabal where he became the idiot fall guy – you know the standard Hanna and Barbera cartoon character with the tooth hanging out, unshaven and going “Duh”, but still printing trillions of dollars. The principle is the same between Zim and DC, just the denominations on the bog rolls are different.

    The real crime in the US, the real shame of the US and this is the thing that will destroy the system if not addressed, is that all of this bailout is done on the backs of stripping out pension funds and benefits to the aged and the sick and the unemployed etc under the guise of winding back entitlements. This is nothing more than a cynical transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich. Give enough people the feeling that they have nothing left to lose and the society implodes into violence. Gangsterism takes over. Syria is an example of a stable nation falling into chaos in the space of a couple years. Think it can’t happen in the US. Think back to 1776 and 1861.

    Entitlement debates should begin by winding back entitlements to the very wealthy which forms the bulk of the corporate welfare payments which is granted under various phoney guises. Eg massive subsidies to grain companies; military contracts, TARP, etc etc.

    But you guys vote for the thieves and liars – doesn’t matter about the party label because the bulk of the Dems, GOP and Tea Party are all the same when they get to Washington.

    And then they sell the lie: “America is the greatest country on earth” crap and everyone stands up with hand on heart and sheds a tear.

    Couple things I learnt in politics:

    1. Politicians are like bananas – they are green and straight when they enter parliament but all end up bent and yellow.

    2. When someone enters the room under the mantle of patriotism, always count the silver when they leave.

    Reality is that if people are stupid enough to buy this crap, then they deserve to get ripped off. And Americans are buying the Brooklyn Bridge every day while the Bunko Squad is looking on, applauding them for their financial acuity.

    God help us all.

  28. I think people are ill-advised in using pop-terms when describing other groups.

    At best their use reveal the speaker as being boorish or easily led. And, at worst, the speaker becomes a hateful, mean spirited bigot better reflecting the values of 1930s Munich than 2010s Kansas City or Columbia.

  29. Greetings from the desert.

    Jace, my RV is a pull trailer, so my pick-up is up front. :smile: One of these days, we’ll meet as we head north through Bullhead City or over the river in Loughlin.

    Thanks for the harp music. I tried to find a url for Maureen Love, a friend from Portland days and sister to Mike Love of the Beach Boys. If you listen to My Room by the BBs, the opening is by Maureen. She has several CD’s but only one very short piece on YouTube.

    Have a great Sunday everyone!

  30. Al Capp woulda really bombed wit dis crowd…

    [Nervously jerking necktie back and forth in worn out Rodney Dangerfield impression]

  31. It’s gloomy and chilly here. I’m going to dig a pizza out of the freezer and get some beer outta the fridge and…

  32. let nature take its course……

    it’s not a fit day out for man nor beast here either.

    (can’t get the celluloid outa my blood).


  33. Toots gave me some of those socks that are guaranteed to be 17 times warmer than ordinary socks. In a word–bullshit.

  34. Teddy Roosevelt is invisible in the current political scene. William McKinley and his cronies would have no trouble fitting in, though.

    Received an email this morning from a Progressive group circulating a Petition. They want to urge the President to nominate Paul Krugman as Treasury Secretary. Noble thought, but it ain’t happening.
    Big Money interests are the one thing Republicans, Democrats and the Media have in common:they’re all owned in some way or another. And the reach is global.
    Citizens United ensured that $ will always have the bigger footprint in our elections, and will always be a best friend to media looking for Ad buyers.
    Trying to solve the Big Money problem in our government is one problem that may be with us forever. We have no modern day Teddy Roosevelt. Integrity is a four letter word.

  35. Hillbilly was not originally American slang

    “he term “Hill-Billies” is first encountered in documents from 17th century Ireland. Roman Catholic King James II landed at Kinsale in Ireland in 1689 and began to raise a Catholic army in an attempt to regain the British throne.

    Protestant King William III, Prince of Orange, led an English counterforce into Ireland and defeated James II at the Battle of the Boyne in 1690. A significant portion of William III’s army was composed of Protestants of Scottish descent (Planters) who had settled in Ulster in northern Ireland.

    The southern Irish Catholic supporters of James II referred to these northern Protestant supporters of King William as “Hill-Billies”[citation needed] and “Billy Boys”–Billy being an abbreviation of William. It is believed that the term “hillbilly” in the United States was conferred during the early 18th century by the occupying British soldiers as a carry over from the Irish term, in referring to Scotch-Irish immigrants of mainly Presbyterian origin, dwelling in the frontier areas of the Appalachian Mountains.”

    I guess that’s before they were the frozen chosen.

  36. Our heatwave of temperatures in excess of a century over the east has resulted in many bushfires. This is some video of the fires in Tasmania.


  37. Just saw a tv video of a guy who attempts to ride a bicycle down the side of a volcano. Of course, the bicycle disintegrates and this guy is rolling and tumbling for over 110 yards. 2 years and multiple operations later he “barely remembers the accident”.

    The biker was: (pick one)

    [ ] Goober
    [ ] Hillbilly
    [ ] Redneck
    [ ] Daredevil
    [ ] Young Man in a Hurry

  38. I decided it’s too cold for beer. Went to the back room and extracted a bottle of Phat Goose, which is resting waiting on the Pizza. (typed 20-min ago)

    Overcooked the pizza, but the wine is perfect. On balance, excellent supper!

  39. More on the fires this morning. In Oz it is Monday already and the time stamp on this video footage indicates that it is only half an hour old from the moment I posted this live footage. So folks, this is our day.


  40. we had at one point an english teacher who went into things like “young man in a hurry” and “angry young man” as literary motifs… now long dead friend thereupon began to joyfully refer to any sharks caught as “angry young man” or when one had taken the bait and was rapidly stripping line off the reel with the clicker screaming as a”young man in a hurry”. It was a fun time for shark fishing. You pull a shark up to the side of a boat with a big hook in his mouth and there you have the essence of “Angry Young Man”.

    Lesson #1 in how English Lit can enrich your life.

  41. In Canberra, we are on high fire alert. Conditions are the same as experienced in 2003 when our particular area burnt down.

    Do we get another devastating fire a decade later?

    I’ll tell you on Wednesday.

    For now we hope that we dodge the bullet.

  42. Just listening to Mitch McConnell on Meet the Press. To say the least I have just heard SSDD. No recognition of change or problems. The same old tired statements. It’s all the fault of the poor feeling entitled rather than the rich ripping off the nation.

    McConnell goal was to make Obumma a one term president. Didn’t happen. No Plan B in sight.

  43. Bill,
    Clear me up. You and your family are in the northwestern part of your continent?

    Hopefully you’re not in Tasmania or (now) Canberra.

    In the northern hemisphere, the prevailing winds run from west to east. Is it the opposite in the southern hemisphere? Seem to remember something like that when learning about the Coriolis effect, but don’t remember if carried over to winds, too.

  44. Pretty cool about the origin of Hill-Billies KGC. Let me know if you find anything cool about “river rats”. If not, someone here can just make something up.

  45. Flatus, mate I am in Canberra. Luckily for me Tasmania is on another island. But what happened there is threatening to happen here on Tuesday. We have plenty of fuel in the bush around us and the drying conditions of the last week of century plus weather means that it is ready to explode. Add a hot wind and we are a spark away from holocaust. Tomorrow is predicted to become similar to the 2003 day from hell.

  46. Take care Bill. Hope you and all around you stay safe. I remember how bad 2003 was. You don’t need a repeat.

  47. Now that I finally understand where BillW is, I have much more empathy for his personal situation and that of his family.

    A bad situation becomes acutely worse once we can put a face to it.

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