Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Red Flag Warning: A Secret Government Bank?

The headline caught my attention: "Secret Gov't Bank Financing More Solyndras" At first I thought perhaps it was some kind right wing conspiracy theory. Then I read the by-line and realized it was a news article from Fox Business. So I clicked into the article and within seconds was dumbfounded by the report. Indeed there is a "secret" bank set up by the Congress in 1973. I won't go into all the details but what struck me as immoral, unethical, and possibly illegal is this federally run bank can acquire funds directly from the US Treasury at will as the Secretary of the Treasury sits on the governing board! The bank, Federal Financing Bank (FFB) doles out very low cost loans to a wide variety of enterprises. And we're not talking chump change here either. Indeed these loans are going out to the tune of billions of dollars!

As I noted above about the Treasury Secretary being on the bank's board, he is the CHAIRMAN of the board and the bank's board executives are treasury officials! The article linked above states,
"The FFB can borrow unlimited amounts of taxpayer money from the Treasury for these kinds of political pet projects. Under the 1973 "FFB Act, the bank may, with the approval of the Secretary (of Treasury), borrow without limit from the Treasury." (italics my emphasis) says the bank's audited statements..."

Does anyone see a problem here? While the article is targeting the recent debacle of the FFB loaning Solyndra a half a trillion dollars and other flaky "green energy" projects, to be sure other administrations and congresses since 1973 have abused the bank's black cover. How much this little boondoggle has cost us is anyone's guess as the bank's operations are not part of the federal budget!

With our nation's finances teetering on the edge, this just adds another weight on the scale to tip us over. The Watchman encourages all citizens to write to their congressional representatives to investigate and plug this leaking hole in the ship of state.

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