Large number? That ain't no large number. Try $23.7 trillion, says TARP special inspector general Neil Barofsky. Now that's a large number!
If I'm reading the Bureau of Economic Analysis's latest reporting right, that figure represents more than a year-and-a-half of the country's entire current GDP (about $14.1 trillion). From that same reporting, I'm sure you'll be happy to hear that although GDP continues to slide, corporate profits are rising again. Can't imagine why.
Darcy Richardson, quoted with permission from personal email:
The entire taxpayer-funded bailout and rescue is nothing more than a massive transfer of wealth from future generations of taxpayers, most of whom aren't even born yet, to prop up the waning fortunes of the country's wealthiest citizens. Only in America would the taxpayers allow a massive subsidy to a company like AIG, whose employees, or at least the vast majority of them, live and work in Europe and enjoy a safety net (including fully paid health care when unemployed) that far exceeds the meager unemployment insurance that jobless Americans receive.
Whether this thing ends in mass starvation or in the stretching of some plutocrat necks is anyone's guess. My own guess is both.