ANOTHER Cave? No Deal

If this is true, it is very bad news.

The WaPo reports that the “deal” in the works on the Garbage Pail will pay the Treasury the bailout money in installments, but this is a figleaf: $250 billion up front, $100 billion if the White House “certifies its necessity,” and then $350 billion which flows automatically unless Congress objects.

You’ve. Got. To. Be. Kidding. Me.

It’s so obvious that the GOP will simply filibuster any objections to the $350 billion if the Bush Administration wants it, especially if Obama wins and they realize that they can undercut his agenda by bankrupting the government. As for the certification of the $100 billion, that’s worse than laughable.

While I suppose the oversight board is good, the best oversight is to have to come back to Congress. The provisions on community banks are so vague that I don’t know what they are.

The report is that the main dispute is over the bankruptcy provisions, which would allow bankruptcy judges to change mortgage provisions “and is fiercely opposed by the banking industry.” Too #$&(&*%^)*^%ing bad. I don’t even know why the banking industry is in the room.

And yes, it is shameful that Obama says it shouldn’t be in the bill. Everything should be in the bill.

The best solution now? Go home. Come back after November 5th.

Author: Jonathan Zasloff

Jonathan Zasloff teaches Torts, Land Use, Environmental Law, Comparative Urban Planning Law, Legal History, and Public Policy Clinic - Land Use, the Environment and Local Government. He grew up and still lives in the San Fernando Valley, about which he remains immensely proud (to the mystification of his friends and colleagues). After graduating from Yale Law School, and while clerking for a federal appeals court judge in Boston, he decided to return to Los Angeles shortly after the January 1994 Northridge earthquake, reasoning that he would gladly risk tremors in order to avoid the average New England wind chill temperature of negative 55 degrees. Professor Zasloff has a keen interest in world politics; he holds a PhD in the history of American foreign policy from Harvard and an M.Phil. in International Relations from Cambridge University. Much of his recent work concerns the influence of lawyers and legalism in US external relations, and has published articles on these subjects in the New York University Law Review and the Yale Law Journal. More generally, his recent interests focus on the response of public institutions to social problems, and the role of ideology in framing policy responses. Professor Zasloff has long been active in state and local politics and policy. He recently co-authored an article discussing the relationship of Proposition 13 (California's landmark tax limitation initiative) and school finance reform, and served for several years as a senior policy advisor to the Speaker of California Assembly. His practice background reflects these interests: for two years, he represented welfare recipients attempting to obtain child care benefits and microbusinesses in low income areas. He then practiced for two more years at one of Los Angeles' leading public interest environmental and land use firms, challenging poorly planned development and working to expand the network of the city's urban park system. He currently serves as a member of the boards of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy (a state agency charged with purchasing and protecting open space), the Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice (the leading legal service firm for low-income clients in east Los Angeles), and Friends of Israel's Environment. Professor Zasloff's other major activity consists in explaining the Triangle Offense to his very patient wife, Kathy.