Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Mr. Obama: Fire this man!

Loyal reader fpm sends this:
"The smartest man in the room is not always right."
- Richard Holbrooke
Given recent disclosures about Geithner's role - as NY Fed President - in AIG bailout, I'm thinking the more appropriate quote runs something like...:
"The smartest man in the room isn't always that bright!"
There are a bunch of headlines from which to choose. I'll go with Financial Times - as a conservative mainstream source:
Geithner under fire over AIG payments
By Tom Braithwaite in Washington
Published: November 17 2009
The New York Federal Res­erve under Tim Geithner “severely limited its ability” to extract ­concessions from AIG’s counter­parties in talks that ended with $27.1bn (€18.18bn, £16.25bn) of public money transferred to the likes of Société Générale and Goldman Sachs, according to a government watchdog.
Neil Barofsky, special inspector-general for the troubled asset relief programme, said in the report that the New York Fed made “policy decisions” that weakened its hand in negotiations with AIG’s counterparties.
HuffPost is less circumspect:
How Can Geithner Survive This?
Geithner Singled Out In TARP Watchdog Neil Barofsky's Scathing Report On AIG Bailout
How, indeed?

Loyal readers may recall that a year ago (18 Nov 2008) I chastised then SecTreas Paulson for making this inane statement:
"There is no playbook for responding to turmoil we have never faced."
At the time I offered SecTreas Paulson this advice:
SecTreas Paulson, not that it's my place to tell you your job, but: isn't it a reasonable expectation that your top priority over the past 2 months ought to have been drafting a playbook???
As far as I can tell, SecTreas designate Geithner didn't worry too much about drafting a playbook, either... in fact, I've seen NO evidence that SecTreas Geithner has any clue what the hell he's doing!... This impression seems to be confirmed by the TARP Watchdog's report on Geithner's actions as NY Fed President: Geithner hadn't a clue then, either!

Mr. Obama: Fire this man!

p.s. here's link to the TARP Watchdog's Report

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