In 2009, Wall Street received a trillion dollar bailout from the US taxpayers. 8 million people had lost their jobs and 6 million lost their homes. 5 trillion dollars in pension money, real estate value, 401K, savings and bonds had disappeared – yet the criminals who caused it did not go to jail. Instead, they pocketed the trillion dollars in taxpayer “bailout money” as salary and bonuses for themselves.
Now those same people – those same Wall Street criminals – are bringing their business model to Puerto Rico. They are preparing to kick the island in the teeth, just like they kicked the American taxpayer and homeowner.
THE 2009 BAILOUT
In March 2009, AIG received a $182 billion bailout – even though AIG was undergoing a criminal investigation by the SEC, and had already been fined $1.6 billion for securities fraud.
But the bailouts didn’t stop there. Nearly every bank on Wall Street was bailed out – even though all of them had profited from subprime mortgages, and intentionally created the mortgage crisis of 2007.
The bailout binge became so widespread, that it became a banking industry joke. Fake “bailout applications” began to circulate on Wall Street, which ridiculed the entire corrupt process.
One of these – called Form EZ-CASH – allowed applicants to specify the preferred destination for their bailout funds: the Cayman Islands, the Four Seasons Spa and Resort Complex, or Bank Suisse.
From 2009 until today, the bailout binge has penetrated nearly every industry in the American economy. A recent study showed as much as two trillion bailout dollars cascading through the US financial system.
This is not a new phenomenon: nearly $220 billion was handed out in the Savings & Loan bailouts of the late 1980s.
In nearly every instance, these bailouts rewarded large companies for their own wrongdoing. It is corporate welfare of the highest order…yet Wall Street has no problem with it, since the dirty money is flowing into their pockets.
But when it comes to Puerto Rico, the song suddenly changes.
THE DOUBLE STANDARD FOR PUERTO RICO
When it comes to Puerto Rico, it’s time for austerity…to close 200 schools, raise water rates by 67%, triple the electricity rates, cut pensions and health plans, raise property and small business taxes, hike gasoline taxes, and charge an 11.5% sales tax.
When it comes to Puerto Rico, it’s time for a Jones Act…which raises the cost of consumer goods by 15-20%, ever since 1920.
When it comes to Puerto Rico, it’s time for a Financial Control Board…which is nothing more than a collection agency for three dozen vulture funds.
Many of these vulture funds, such as Stone Capital Partners and the fund managed by John Paulson, contain the same business model — and even the same people — who destroyed the US economy in 2007-2009.
THE REAL AGENDA
Neither the vulture funds, nor the pending legislation for the Financial Control Board (Senate 2381 and the House “PROMESA” bill), discuss the revocation of the Jones Act; the enabling of Puerto Rican international trade relations; or the development of indigenous industry, capital formation, or entrepreneurship.
Their sole and exclusive priority is the payment of Puerto Rico’s so-called “debt” and the establishment of P3s (public private partnerships), which are really P5s (public private partnerships for the plunder of Puerto Rico).
So there it is: bailouts for Wall Street, a kick in the teeth for Puerto Rico.
Within the next three months, this kick will be delivered again and again.
For a history of the War Against All Puerto Ricans, read the book…
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