Tarp Overseer Debunks Bailout Myths: Big Companies HAVEN’T Repaid Tarp Funds … And Funds to Help Homeowners HAVEN’T Been Paid

George Washington's picture

Apologists for government bailouts push two main myths:

  • That all of the bailout funds have been repaid
  • That the bailouts helped the average American

But the official government overseer of the Tarp bailout program – the special inspector general for TARP, Christy L. Romero – has debunked both myths.

Today, Romero wrote the following to Congress:

After 3½ years, the Troubled Asset Relief Program (“TARP”) continues to be an active and significant part of the Government’s response to the financial crisis. It is a widely held misconception that TARP will make a profit. The most recent cost estimate for TARP is a loss of $60 billion. Taxpayers are still owed $118.5 billion (including $14 billion written off or otherwise lost).

And earlier this month, Romero stated that the portion of the Tarp funds which were supposed to help homeowners haven’t been disbursed:

A fund to support homeowners in the communities hit hardest by the collapse of the housing bubble has disbursed just 3 percent of its budget and aided only 30,640 homeowners in the two years since its creation, according to a report released on Thursday by a federal watchdog office.


The Hardest Hit Fund, which was created in the spring of 2010, grants money to state housing finance agencies for efforts to help families that are facing foreclosure. It has “experienced significant delay” because of “a lack of comprehensive planning” by the Treasury Department and limited participation by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the large mortgage servicers, said the report by the special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

“Look at the TARP money that goes out to the banks,” said Special Inspector General Christy Romero in an interview with The Huffington Post. “That goes out in a matter of days. This has been two years and only 3 percent of these funds have trickled out to homeowners.”

Indeed, bailing out the big banks hurts - rather than helps - the American economy.  See this, this and this.   (And it doesn't take a PhD economist to guess that using bailout funds to buy gold toilet seats and prostitutes is probably not the best way to stimulate the economy as a whole).

The only way to really stimulate the economy would be for the government to give money to the little guy on Main Street – instead of the big boys on Wall Street.  And see this.

Yet the big banks continue today to be bailed out through a wide variety of overt and hidden schemes … while the little guy gets nothing.

This is true even though the American people were opposed to the bank bailouts from day one, and continue to oppose them:

As I’ve noted since 2008, Americans are united in their overwhelming disapproval for bailouts to the big banks.


This has remained true right up to today.


As Rassmussen found only last month (as summarized by KXLF news):

Today’s Rasmussen Reports survey finds that most Americans don’t like bailouts for financial institutions.

60% Oppose Financial Bailouts; 74% Say Wall Street Benefited Most


Survey of 1,000 American Adults




• Just 20% think it was a good idea for the government to provide bailout funding to banks and other financial institutions, but 60% say otherwise.


• While many activists try to link the Republican Party and Wall Street, Republicans think the bailouts were a bad idea by an eight-to-one margin.


• Those not affiliated with either major party think they were a bad idea by a four-to-one margin. Democrats are much more evenly divided. Thirty-four percent (34%) of those in the president’s party say the bailouts were a good idea while 42% disagree.


• Overall, 68% believe that most of the bailout money went to the very people who created the nation’s ongoing economic crisis, but 12% disagree and 21% aren’t sure.


[And see this]


As the Washington Post’s Greg Sargent notes, the recent proposal from lobbyists to the American Bankers Association recommending ways to co-opt the Occupy movement accurately stated:

Well-known Wall Street companies stand at the nexus of where OWS protestors and the Tea Party overlap on angered populism. Both the radical left and the radical right are channeling broader frustration about the state of the economy and share a mutual anger over TARP and other perceived bailouts. This combination has the potential to be explosive later in the year when media reports cover the next round of bonuses and contrast it with stories of millions of Americans making do with less this holiday season.


(Except that it is the majority of Americans – not “extremists” on either side of the aisle – that share this anger).


The “Tea Party” movement was centered on the protesting government bailouts of the giant banks, before it was hijacked by the mainstream Republican party, Sarah Palin, Neocons and others. See this, this, this, this and this.


Ron Paul said last month at a GOP debate:

Bailouts came from both parties…. If you have to give money out, you should give it to people losing their mortgages, not to the banks.


And one of the most common sayings of Occupy Wall Street protesters is:

Banks got bailed out. We got sold out

(See this and this.)


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blindman's picture

Jon Corzine Is the Original George Zimmerman
POSTED: April 24, 8:37 AM ET
Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/taibblog/jon-corzine-is-the-o...
"..Nobody disputes the fact that MF Global officials dipped into customer accounts and took over $1.6 billion of customer money. We not only know that company officials reached into customer accounts, we know they brazenly lied to bondholders, ratings agencies and investors about the firm's financial condition ("MF Global's capital and liquidity has never been stronger," wrote the CFO of MF Global’s holding company, on the same day Moody’s downgraded it to junk status).

We even know that eighteen days before the firm went bust, company officers discussed how quickly to return money to customers, and even contemplated, in writing, the possibility of not returning the money right away. This is from a risk-assessment document prepared by company officers entitled "Break the Glass": .."

jomama's picture

you mean to tell me krugman was full of shit 3 days ago when he tried (read: failed) to bash ZH?

at least he's batting 1.000!~

indio007's picture

WTF does "otherwise lost" mean?

Are they talking about MF Global?

max2205's picture

'no money for YOU!'

Xrated's picture

As a underwriter for one of the big tarp banks in home retension,
The HHF loans are supposed to be for people who lost their jobs and drawing unemployment. We bend over backwards to help them. Example, your piti is $2500 a month and you get $1200 unemployment. Is $600 a month new payment fair? Bet your ass.
Too many deadbeats over 12 months past due and no income cry to their democrap congressman wanting a better deal, such a no payments.
Btw, the Bank eats the loss, not us taxpayers.
Anyone can apply for a Hamp or Non hamp, but you better have a way to pay us back because too many people have taken advantage of us and we have to make a profit today to keep the doors open.

indio007's picture

HAHAAHAHA ! What a lark! In the land of fiat printing, the banks take a loss! ROFLMAO!

Pushing that zero key is very difficult!

Libertarian777's picture

bank eats the loss? have you read the article you're posting under?

how the hell do you think the banks make money nowadays? on the spread between ZIRP discount window loans and 2% 10years or 4% 30 year US bonds. I.e. inflate the money supply, otherwise known as the 'stealth' tax on the middle class.

Plus what happens when the banks make a huge enough loss to go bankrupt? Do they go bankrupt? no, we directly bail them out.

3rd... TARP has NOT been repaid. why? cos banks are making US the taxpayer hold the bag.

Buck Johnson's picture

If banks and corporations can cry to the govt. for protection and financial easing, why can't you and me.  The company should be less of a cry baby they have rooms full of lawyers and Ivy league graduates who should have known.  But the govt. thinks little ole me and you have to be responsible and should have known but the big banks don't have too.  If you can't see this for what it is then no wonder America is going down the tubes.

smb12321's picture

The reason you and I can't cry for protection is the same reason banks should not do so - the role of the State is not to reward mistakes or even bad luck.   All the talk about poor folks not understanding the whole sub-prime problem is BS.  Every financial service in the country advised against it; finance shows on tv warned not to do it.  The feds were determined to place everyone in a house whether they could pay for it or not and found willing partners in the big banks.  It's that ancient problem - folks want something for nothing.

Fix It Again Timmy's picture

Whadda ya mean?  We're supposed to pay this money back?  C'mon, you can't be serious! Oh, in that case, the check is IN da mail.........

sgt_doom's picture

Legal Nonsense:  Egypt's Islamist Law and Corporate Facist Law in the USA

In Egypt, an artist was recently charged under Islamist law for critical remarks --- or for practicing fre speech!

In America, whether's the US Supreme Court's ruling on Citizens United (granting further super-rights to corporations) or the present president's standing before the nation and falsely proclaiming that the banksters broke no laws or the previous president's OCC issuing a rule on 1/07/2004 invoking the National Banking Act of 1864 to preempt states from applying credit laws to national banks to halt their predatory lending practices, the same National Banking Act which was nullified and negated with the passage of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999 to allow for the raping and pillaging of the nation by the banksters --- clearly lawlessness prevails in both countries!

When the US president, who claims to be some sort of attorney, publicly condemns Pfc. Bradley Manning as guilty, prior to his lawful trial, while his Vice President Biden claims Muburak of Egypt wasn't a dictator, makes a complete mockery of any semblance of the law.

Predatory jurisprudence is not the law ---- but simply so much legal nonsense!

BeetleBailey's picture

Until some brave US military leader realizes he/they (the small, tight circle of them) have to sacrifice themselves for the future of this country, and literally goes in, takes over a sitting Congress, coordinates the whole current cabal of POTUS, et. al., and, muzzles the rest of the military, as well as EMP's the entire country to deafen the noise - and shakes the rug - nothing will change.

Ultimately, a fortnight of shutting down - whilst telling the world to fuck right off/we'll get back to you during it - is in dire order.


It's "business as usual" in USZombieland.

A good, complete, douching of TPTB has to occur, a la Jefferson's prophetic words.

krispkritter's picture

Surreality: "Hope and Change! Mission Accomplished."


Reality: "Bait and Switch! Got'R Done."

blindman's picture

have we missed the significance of the federal reserve act
of 1913, the creation of the irs and the legal tender laws?
the banks own this place folks. they obviously own the government
and the treasury. they own the bond market and the money system, literally
the people aren't even people anymore, they are
merely deluded consumers of shit. did i miss something?
it is a nation of banks. a nation by the banks, for the banks and
of the banks, bleeding the population of its assets, savings, retirement,
other accumulations; transfer it all to the banks and their hit men,
and then buy some weapons to kill little brown people who have the
misfortune of being born on or near the raw material for the toys of
children of the elite. we have diplomats to explain this to
the international community. they are attractive in dress and word.
if the people of the united states ran the government it would be
demonized as a socialist government. if the taxpayer bails out the
elite banking speculators and insurance fraud, securities fraud,
nazi leaning con artists on wall street (welfare of the highest
order) (moral hazard become systemically endemic) some call it
"a free market".
the usa is to be the first republic on earth to be run by the international banking
community. their weapon of choice is accounting and securities fraud to maintain
their favored seat in the debt creation, money stealing, fraud inducing system of
nationicide by insane greed and control fraud. the fruits of the best and the brightest!
we'll see how it turns out.
US ECONOMIC CRISIS : The Decline of America
"Banks robbed the US during the Quantitative Easing Process Federal Reserve spent $2.74 Trillion and got nothing in return The bottom 90% of Americans have had their wealth stolen US allowed Income Inequality to go so wrong Banks are gambling in unregulated markets now This recession compares to the depression In the vetting process of candidates for President? the Media Elite, AIPAC, CFR, Bilderberg Group, Military Industrial Complex, Oil & Bank Industries etc. select a chosen few to be considered for the job. We are then given the opportunity to vote on the hand picked candidates who have pledged to continue their policies. You've seen McCain & Obama at AIPAC and you watched them as Senators run to bail out the Banks. BP got a pass, while war profiteers divert our attention to social issues. "

AnAnonymous's picture

did i miss something?

Much actually.

1913 is one date among others. The seminal date is 1776, July, 4th.

This is when it started. This is when US citizenism took wings.

blindman's picture

from the keiser collection ..
December 16, 2011
Finance Now Exists For Its Own Exclusive Benefit
By Jeffrey Snider
.."In the old days of boring banking (all the way back to the 1970's and 1980's), Bank of America would have had to "invest" $74 trillion into some economy somewhere, creating real credit of that amount, just to create these financial cash flows. If we look at this Synthetic Banking system as a means of avoiding the complications arising from actually having to lend out money, in some form or another, Bank of America has actively engaged in synthesizing the cash flows from $74 trillion in financial assets. These assets don't exist, only the derived cash flows do. But that means that Bank of America has dedicated resources to engaging in lending activities that never lend money to anyone in the real economy.

If the banking system as a whole performs a vital economic function, the only argument in favor of the Synthetic Banking system is price discovery. But do we need to conjure $74 trillion from nothing to discover the real price of U.S. treasury rates or U.S. equities (through futures contracts) or even U.S. dollars? Are currency trades not liquid enough that we need to have $64.6 trillion in synthetic arrangements? Anyone paying attention to markets as they operate in 2011 (and have for several years) knows that the synthetic money now drives the cash money. In other words, the futures and derivative markets lead the cash markets in a fit of the theoretical tail wagging the very real dog. That is not price discovery, it is dysfunction and disconnect." ...
........ and this ....from jca
25 April 2012
Tavakoli: Another Financial Crisis Looming, And You're On Your Own
"Janet Tavakoli takes the gloves off and tells it like it is in the cover story in the May 2012 issue of Research Magazine.
You'll have to read it here, because I doubt you would hear this in any of the mainstream media."
Finding the Culprits
Derivatives expert Janet Tavakoli takes a hard look at what — and who — caused the financial crisis.
By Jane Wollman Rusoff
April 25, 2012
"...Is President Obama part of the cover-up?

Yes, in that he’s enabled it. He’s left people in place who crashed the global financial system in the first place: [Treasury Secretary] Tim Geithner and [Federal Reserve chair] Ben Bernanke. Obama had told us: “You can’t keep doing things the same way and expect different results.” So he’s been quite a hypocrite.

Who else is in the cover-up?

Mary Schapiro was appointed [by President Obama] to head the SEC. She was formerly head of FINRA, the antichrist of investor advocacy! Yet she was chosen SEC [chair] because the regulators are captive by and serve the people they’re supposed to be regulating. They do not serve investors.

In a way, Obama has been the anti-regulator because he didn’t put people in the regulatory agencies, the Fed or the Treasury who would investigate and fix things that are wrong in our global financial system.

If he’s re-elected, then presumably, things will continue in this same way?


What if a Republican is elected President?

Who else is not in the pocket of Big Money interests! (Ron Paul - Jesse)

So, no matter who’s President, these crimes — if you want to call them crimes — will be perpetuated?

Yes. And we do want to call them crimes! They are crimes.

What should Obama do now to help Americans?

He has a lot of resources at his disposal, one main one being moral suasion — he’s got the pulpit. When there was a crisis, Reagan, Carter, Bush went on television and explained what needed to be done. We haven’t seen that kind of leadership from President Obama. If anything, the American people have been told things to make them think [conditions] aren’t really as bad as they are: inflation isn’t as bad as you think because an iPad is cheaper now — nonsense like that.

So the public is being poorly informed?

Yes. Therefore, financial advisors need to be doing fundamental analysis of investments and not [only] be reading the Wall Street Journal or, God forbid, watching CNBC. (Don't look for any appearances on CNBC or Bloomberg TV, Janet - Jesse)

In other words, FAs should do their own research and figure things out for themselves.

Yes. Sadly, you’re on your own. That’s part of how we got into this mess: We lost the art of rolling up our sleeves and looking for opportunities.

On Internet TV, you stated that we’re “absolutely vulnerable to a repeat [crisis] because the fraud went unpunished and we printed money like crazy to bail us out of the last one.” That’s scary.

But the fact is we’ve bailed people out and had no consequences for them. So it emboldened them to turn around and behave in the same way. Look at banks like JP Morgan: Shortly after the crisis, they thumbed their nose at the idea of trying to separate speculation from the rest of the bank. So if you don’t have restraints on behavior, you’ll see it repeated. And now we’ve made it worse. It’s like handing a drunk driver who got into a crash the keys to a bigger, faster car together with a bottle of vodka.

In every area of finance where we bailed people out, you see the same wrongdoers volunteering to help fix the situation. That’s pretty funny: They weren’t trustworthy before, and they’re not trustworthy now." .....

Milestones's picture

As I have posted on several occasions, The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 was illegal (see my post of 6-14-10). The act was due to be reviewed as it was a 100 year deal, but in 12 USC 341 0f 2-25-27 it was extended to be only dissolved by congress or forfeiture of franchise for violation of law which I would contend has been done. 

In my opinion, only guns and guts will unseat these vultures. Our children are f**ked unless we take care of our parents failures.    Milestones

brettd's picture

Did we somehow think that fascism was going to look different when done in America?

AnAnonymous's picture

Well, this is not fascism. This is US citizenism.

Bunga Bunga's picture

Get over it, TARP is just another legalized way to make money.

onthesquare's picture

there is that word again; legalized.  No one gives a shit about legalized.  It is what is right that matters. 

Eric L. Prentis's picture

Financial markets are a mirror on the real economy.


President Obama and his Wall Street cronies spend the last four years painting the mirror, forgetting the real economy. Americans, when looking into this painted mirror say, “Wow, I look great. But, why do I feel so bad?”


Let us count the ways:

1. The $5 trillion dollars of national debt used painting the mirror has drastically reduced future options.

2. The housing market is moribund.

3. Unemployment remains very high and employment prospects are bleak.

4. Low interest rates are severely hurting demand and capital formation.

5. Zombie banks are harming the real economy

6. Inflation is high (about 6%) and real wages are declining.

7. Industrial production has not regained its prior high level, and is weak.

8. Greedy, selfish psychopathic criminals remain in charge of the political process and the economy.

9. Fraud is rampant. Those who caused the credit crisis are NOT in prison.

10. Trust in our leaders is gone.

Widowmaker's picture

TARP was nothing but a record bonus round for failure and the abortion of capitalism.

Make no mistake about it, the entire fucking thing is a myth from top to bottom to cover over the incorporated fraud and malice by criminals.

MachoMan's picture

I can say definitively that the TARP money has not been repaid.  Some of it has been repaid, however, in an effort to make things appear like they have been repaid, the government offered banks a new loan with a more favorable repayment schedule/rate than TARP (the rates on TARP were actually quite onerous in subsequent years).  In other words, the "repaid" numbers are goosed at best...  and there is still money owed to taxpayers for the pleasure, it's just under a different name...  As you might guess, the banks have been expected to be quiet about the matter.

[in other words, there was another tarp without anyone knowing it...  tarp refi].

Augustus's picture


Are you a 9/11 Truther too?

The money was repaid, but you claim that it was not repaid.

And you know of a TARP refi because you were at the meeting in Antarctica with Elvis presiding when all of this was agreed?

NotApplicable's picture

They must've heard us all joking, "We're gonna need a bigger TARP!"

WTF_247's picture

All people are equal.  However, some people are more equal than others.


This is the motto that runs our Government.  You can apply it to almost any action they take.

NotApplicable's picture

Too complicated. Try this one.

"What's in it for me?"

Dingleberry's picture

Here's all you need to know:


The bailouts will never be repaid. Where is Erin Burnett now??


Acorn10012's picture

Tongue-washing my ball sack.

NotApplicable's picture

Hopefully undergoing a brain implant. But that would ruin her, wouldn't it?

Bunga Bunga's picture

If she got at least some brain that way, why not?

Centurion9.41's picture

Good piece Georgie.

What the US gov should have done is use the bazooka to protect the taxpayer's deposits, and let the equity and bond holders take the hit.

Funny how the 20+ year mantra of diversification as protection was thrown out the window when it came to the uber-wealthy and corrupt cabal.

IF, IF, the US economy and US taxpayer are the real rock upon which the US is built, why then rape the taxpayer to bailout sophisticated, accredited investors?

Iceland, a country with not as nearly robust or capable economy as the US?  Iceland that let the band lenders fall on the bad investments, and protected the deposits of their people?

IF, IF, Warren Buffett really had the protections he claims, and really cared about the American people, why did he not advocate exactly what Iceland did? 

What did WB, the guru who the Sheeple are taught to venerate, and who supposedly cares about Americans, do?  He looked into the books of GS, saw their counter parties, and then lobbied Obama to use the MONEY YOU WOULD MAKE IN THE FUTURE to bail out the banks..... Money you havent even yet made, your money yet to be taken away via future taxes; it's known as US Treasury Debt.

Americans must learn these three critical principles: that US debt is money they will make in the future being taken from them today; that virtually all the "entitlements" they were sold by politicians as being their right to have are NOT their right to have; that white collar criminals will NOT be prosecuted until they vote representatives into office who will push the AG's of the states and federal government to prosecute to the full extent of the law.

If American's do not do these things, they are willing accomplices to their being raped by the pig politicians.

It was reasonable, before the internet, to understand how American's could be ignorant of events.

However today, no man of honesty can assert that American's were defensless or understandably ignorant of what was going on.

The German's of the 1940s have a far far better defense of ignorance than the 99%ers and progressive liberals of today's America.

brettd's picture

One of these days, American 20, 30, & 40 years olds, (who had no say/vote/voice in the 

Medicare/SS/Pension funds of the 60's, 70's and 80's) are going to say "...you guys

are the ones who voted for this, YOU pay for it!"

From Biblical law down through our courts today, the law has not imposed

the debts of one generation on the following generation.

Think we've got racial polarization?  Wait 'till this generational drama comes to a head!

Centurion9.41's picture

Yep, it's gonna happen.  Told my father that years ago.


Diogenes's picture

We did pay for it. We paid for our parents retirement and we paid for our retirement. The money was supposed to be in our company pension funds and in our government pension funds.

Now they have plenty of money for big business executives and bankers but somehow our money has gone poof and no one can find it.

What did they promise you for throwing Granny under the bus?

And if you help them get away with this what do you think they have in store for you?

Centurion9.41's picture

They didnt pay for it.  They didn't buy UST or put invest it in real assets.  They said they said math was a waste of time, something they would never use, and through their ignorance bought off on the Snake Oil Wall Street sold them.

So, now's the time to pay.

And in this one regard Im with Bernanke;  he's forcing the capital to pay for these "entitlements' voted for but never paid for, from the "retirement savings" of the fools that didnt vote the f'd up system into play.

Lednbrass's picture

You agreed to a Ponzi scheme, nothing more.  The fact that you were foolish and got suckered does not mean that those behind you need to be willing to accept the same fate. The fact is that those who set up this monstrosity made out like bandits, and every generation after gets less and less out of it.  Sorry that math is challenging, but anyone paying attention ahs seen this for years,

What do you mean it went poof? They spent the SS income and were very up front about it, do you pay any attention? It now sits in the form of unmarketable Securities they put in the piggy bank after they spent the cash now theoretically making interest to be paid by the taxpayer.

Here is what people will get back based on when they retired, why on earth do you want to condemn kids to getting burned by this? By what stretch is fiscal child abuse by taking out payday loans against the future theoretical earnings of elementary schoolers a valid economic policy?


Augustus's picture


I did not agree to a Ponzi Scheme.

Your buddies in Washington created it and continue it with the help of prancing poofters such as you.

You've been bent over so many times in the park, earning the ready cash, that I bet you have to walk that bicycle home.  What service premium do you get for having no teeth?

dwdollar's picture

You've already proven yourself to be an idiot Augustus. Better stop before you dig any further.

Augustus's picture

You've smoked too much of that back pain remedy to be able to present a cogent response.  Keep spending the benefit checks and living in the fog.  Just stay off the highways.

dwdollar's picture

Go watch Fox News while you pretend to live in a free market jackass. You don't belong here.

Nobody is buying your deflections from the bankers.

Augustus's picture

You and Lednbrass should share a sleeping bag.  At least you will not have offspring.

If you had paid your home loan as the large banks have repaid their TARP advances, you would not be on the street and posting from the library computer.

Lednbrass's picture

I support your right to be a flaming fucking idiot but you really are abusing the privelege. While it is funny to listen to you regurgitate scripts created to refute equally retarded assholes and entirely unrelated to any subject at hand it is also painful to watch.

This is where you now build another strawman, scrawl my name on it in crayon with backward kindergarten letters, kick it over then run around twirling your shirt screaming "GOOOOOAAAAALLLLL"! like a Brazilian soccer announcer.

Augustus's picture


You've posted nothing but name calling trash.  Your fantasies of sex with animals would be found disturbing by many in the US.  It is only the change in laws related to the mentally unstable which allows you the freedom to not be institutionalized.  Don't put that freedom in jeopardy by writing about your sexual practices.

The facts are that the large banks have repaid the TARP money.  Stupid and retarded butt wipes as you cannot pay attention long enough to understand that.  It is easier for you and your savior O'Bummer to blame the strawman than deal with the truth.

Lednbrass's picture


Once again, you are so flipping stupid that anyone who doesnt like TARP= Obama supporter. Im not sure what is more contemptible then a progressive repub.  I am surprised your brain generates sufficient power to actually move your body.

dwdollar's picture

Never had a home loan jackass. Why don't you go somewhere that tows the false lef-right paradigm?