Now, instead, what the country is getting may be the biggest public bailout of private industry in American history.
Seven hundred billion dollars would be on the line, says Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson. It may be a trillion. Public money. To staunch private losses.
It may save the economy, but the economy — and financial facts of life — will be different on the other side. And what should taxpayers get for stepping up?
This hour, On Point: The mother of all bailouts for Wall Street — and what comes with it.
You can join the conversation. What should the mega-bail-out of America’s financial system mean for Wall Street and the rest of the country? Are we socializing the losses after thirty-plus years of hyper wealth and private gain? Tell us what you think.Guests:
Dennis Berman, editor and reporter for The Wall Street Journal. He also writes for the paper’s Deal Journal blog.
James K. Galbraith, Lloyd M. Bentsen Jr. Chair in Government and Business Relations and Professor of Government at the University of Texas at Austin. His new book is "The Predator State: How Conservatives Abandoned the Free Market and Why Liberals should Too."
Kenneth Rogoff, professor of economics at Harvard University. He was chief economist and director of research at the International Monetary Fund from 2001 to 2003.
This program aired on September 22, 2008.