Here’s my summary (which I know you’ve been waiting for) of the proposed mortgage-bailout legislation:
- The Secretary of the Treasury is authorized to purchase "mortgage-related assets from any financial institution having its headquarters in the United States."
- He can do anything he wants to in order to carry that out.
- Seriously, anything at all.
- Every six months he has to tell Congress what he did.
- With regard to the Secretary’s authority under this Act, see 2 and 3 above.
- But he only gets $700 billion to spend.
- He can come up with that money however he wants to.
- His decisions are "non-reviewable" and "may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency."
- This authority terminates after two years, except for all of it.
- The national debt limit is hereby raised from Ginormous to Super-Ginormous (technically, $11.315 trillion) for this purpose.
- The cost of the assets will be determined according to the Federal Credit Reform Act of 1990, "as applicable," or if not applicable, some other way.
- This only applies to those few mortgages originated before September 17, 2008.
I think that’s a fair summary, but you decide. And I say, it’s about time we gave a government agency nearly three-quarters of a trillion dollars to spend and virtually unfettered discretion to act with no judicial review of any kind. What could go wrong?