Joseph's Reviews > Bailout: An Inside Account of How Washington Abandoned Main Street While Rescuing Wall Street

Bailout by Neil Barofsky
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's review
Jul 25, 12

Read in July, 2012

1 star for the wooden prose and the incessant need to tattle on government officials who may have insulted the author during his role in Washington (Tim Geithner, Herb Allison, Eric Thorson, and many others) by describing instances of insults, profanity-laced conversations, and failure to be given the deference the author felt was his due mar the 5-star expose of how capitalism allows for the privatization of profits but the socialization of losses. The descriptions of the various programs our government attempted during the financial crisis are relatively well explained and the author does a fine job explaining his concerns over the potential for fraud that existed in the alphabet soup of programs the government created ad hoc during the financial crisis. He also gives a good sense of the difficulty one has in upsetting the way our government currently works and the politics involved in getting government workers (who ostensibly work for the public) to behave in an ethical, transparent manner. The common tripes of complexity, being afraid that companies wouldn't sign up for programs because they were afraid of vigorous oversight, etc., should upset even the most placid of the electorate as it is painfully clear that our government works for the benefit of corporations and business instead of consumers and the average voter. So although I think the book serves as yet another example of the disconnect between Washington and the rest of the country and gives a good personal account of the difficulties public advocates face while challenging entrenched interests, the pettiness of the author at being slighted during his time in Washington may have in fact impeded his opportunity to get even more accomplished in his role.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Damien (new) - added it

Damien "Tattling" is the word power holders use to make truth seekers feel insecure for exposing truths they don't want people to hear. Think deeply about it...

message 2: by Joseph (last edited Aug 09, 2012 10:56AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Joseph Interesting comment Damien. So in other words, if you read something that someone writes whom you are preternaturally inclined to agree with this individual is automatically a "truth seeker" whose main reason is for the good of society rather than someone who may be aggrieved, or is looking to settle a score, or may have a financial motivation to do so, etc. Who says the author is a "truth seeker?" He is entitled to his story, just as I am sure you would get a different story from Geithner and Allison. My quibble was more of style than content. Coming across as an obnoxious, truculent, self-aggrandizer may limit one's effectiveness in changing any form of bureaucratic culture if you really think deeply about it.

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