As the details of the government's proposed bailout of Wall Street start to emerge, there's a corresponding chorus of discontent being raised by the American people.
Even those who understand the need for the bailout are expressing their displeasure.
The $700 billion plan would empower the Treasury Department to buy bad mortgages from banks. Treasury would then negotiate prices and resell those mortgages (a risky proposition) freeing the banks that backed the poor loans to start lending money again.
Of course, those whose homes have been foreclosed get nothing. The big guys on Wall Street get a pass. And that's what's frustrating so many people.
News Talk Online political correspondent Alan Jasie took a walk down Wall Street after the show and spotted a guy getting into a Cadillac Escalade. Not a Lincoln Town Car. A Cadillac Escalade. Whose driver whisked him away, presumably for a luxury ride home.
With the rest of us parking even our efficient cars in favor of public transportation in and out of the city, the Escalade is, arguably, a symbol of the excesses of Wall Street that got us into this mess in the first place.
Partisanship was set aside today as callers to News Talk Online on Paltalk.com expressed their frustration over the mess we're in today. Democrats, Republicans and independents all asked why those who are responsible seem to be escaping retribution. Several want to know what Congress plans to do to ensure that this doesn't happen again. And caller after caller asked, why are the corporations being bailed out while individuals who are suffering from their decisions are being left to fend for themselves.
Jasie notes that it's really more than $700 billion in taxpayer's money here. He calculates that it's costing $85 billion more to bail out AIG. Another $25 billion to save Fannie and Freddie. And $29 billion in assistance in the JP Morgan absorption of Bear Stearns. But what's another $150 billion or so among friends?
The other question is, of course, have the people who play with other people's money learned anything? If the guy taking the Escalade limousine home from work on The Street is any indication, maybe not.