The name TARP, as it relates to the $700 billion bailout bill, stands for “Troubled Asset Relief Program.” Now that Secretary Paulson has decided that the bail-out won’t actually buy “troubled assets,” we need a new name:
Paulson’s remarks are an acknowledgement that the centerpiece of the $700 billion bailout request to lawmakers was ill-conceived. Neel Kashkari, the Treasury official who heads the rescue program, told legislators last month that officials shifted to buying stakes in banks because it was a faster way to revive capital markets and the economy.
“I will never apologize for changing a strategy or an approach if the facts change,” Paulson said.
Treasury and Federal Reserve officials are exploring a new “facility” to bolster the market for securities backed by assets, Paulson said, adding later that the program would be “significant in size.” Officials are considering using a portion of the bailout money to “encourage private investors to come back to this troubled market,” he said.
… The Treasury chief said the department is also considering having companies that accept new taxpayer funding get matching private capital. Buying “illiquid” mortgage-related assets — the reason the Troubled Asset Relief Program was established a month ago — is no longer being considered, he said.
Might I suggest “Congressional Redistribution of American Prosperity” for a new name?