Unable to whip the votes against Audit the Fed in the Senate, the White House prevailed upon Bernie Sanders to limit the audit to only going back to 2007, and Bernie complied.  What does that mean?  Scarecrow:

The key is not when they audit, it’s what the get to audit. They’ve excluded the workings of the Open Markets Committee where the decisions were made.

The incompetence occurred in the Fed’s FOMC, where they missed signals, squashed dissent, and showed they were fools or tools. What the GAO will get, in a not fully public form, is a peek at how badly insolvent the banks were when the Fed accepted their toxic assets and gave them cash instead. So we’ll get an accounting of how much looting occurred by not necessarily learn how the looting occurred or who designed it or covered it up.

And this is just the Senate. They’ll get another chance to expand the coverup in conference with the House.

Unanswered questions:

What’s shielded under the FOMC operations?

  • 1.  Transcripts of meetings and staff input?  We don’t get those for five years, if then.
  • 2.  Authorization for bailing out the foreign banks?, because that wasn’t done through the other mechanisms that might be audited.?
  • 3.  Policies/directions wrt to accepting toxic assets for cast?

We could get a bunch of numbers that all add up, but even those could be in aggregate form, which is how you hide individual culpability while claiming you’re protecting proprietary information (shielding a bank).

Bernie was evidently on CSPAN this morning saying that they’d make changes in conference too.  As Michael Whitney said, Bernie “held out longer than when he screwed us on public option.”  I guess that’s progress.

Update: Text of the updated amendment AYO10C67

Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
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