Freedom Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption to promote and protect individual freedom, announced that it has recently filed a complaint against the Department of the Treasury and the Federal Reserve for failing to turn over information under the Freedom of Information Act regarding the first half of the $700 billion dollar bailout.
Freedom Watch's initial FOIA request sought to provide an answer as to where, exactly, the money went and in what amounts specific various companies and parties received those funds. The group says it's concerned that the money, which cannot be accounted for by the government, was doled out based on political influence and graft.
The bailout critics say that with so much money being flooded into the financial markets, there is undoubtedly corruption in this process, with lawyers, politicians, and lobbyists all taking their cut of this enormous sum of taxpayer provided dollars.
"In this troubling time in American history, with an unprecedented national deficit and uncertainty in the financial markets, this 'bailout bill' was touted by former U.S. Treasury Secretary Paulson and federal Reserve chair Ben Bernanke as the only way to stop the mounting financial crisis and to get America back on the road to prosperity," the group said in a statement.
With the first $350 billion dollars spent in October of 2008 the nation has posted job losses in the months of November, December, and January, respectively in the amounts of 597,000, 577,000, and 598,000 Americans, nearly 2 million people in all.
Furthermore, since Nov. 1, the month after the $350 billion handout, the Dow has dropped more than 14 percent and at 10 of the 13 largest banks to have received TARP money, lending actually decreased in the most recent quarter by 1.4 percent.
During that same period, the amount of bonuses given by Wall Street bankers to themselves was $18.4 billion. "Essentially what we have seen after the bailout, based entirely on numbers and statistics, is a Wall Street that continues to make exorbitant salaries, a financial market that continues its rapid decline, and a near defeated America that is hemorrhaging 600,000 jobs every month," Freedom Watch said.
"What Freedom Watch and our constituents would like to know is where that $350 billion disappeared to and how it was determined who would get what share, so that these individuals and companies can be held accountable and so that that there is some visibility in the system that is supposed to be acting for the American people, not against them," said Freedom Watch Chairman Larry Klayman.
"As a result, we are using the courts to uncover the rocks and see what crawls out from underneath. Its bad enough that our country is being converted into a socialist state, but to have hard earned taxpayer monies stolen during an economic depression is not acceptable."
He said the group will also be filing suit against the government to monitor "where the next $800,000,000,000 billion goes and how it is given out and for what reasons."