Organizing Math

Financial Justice Ideas and Issues Personal Writings
New Orleans         Just so we can all keep up at home, as the numbers keep growing, let’s see if we can keep our organizing math together on some of the big issues that are in front of us these days:

    With the sudden about face yesterday when the US Federal Reserve agreed to bailout AIG, the mammoth US-based worldwide insurer, to the tune of a “kiss-and-don’t tell” loan of $89 Billion, the numbers are getting so big, we need to keep score now at home:

*    AIG                                      $  89 billion
*    Freddie/Fannie                    $200 billion
*    Bear Stearns                       $  29 billion
*    Opening the Fed Window    $  unknown still
*    Opening the Window with Bad Collateral    $ unknown still
*    RUNNING TOTAL                   $318 BILLION PLUS

    Let’s also follow the Louisiana post-Gustav food stamp fiasco.  The director of the department was pushed out, but the debacle continues with reports today that 22,000 people got “lucky” and got double food stamp payments.  Here is the tally now:

*    Total Emergency Applications Processed    334,000
*    Total Double-Payments              22,000
*    Total Eligible Still Waiting for Payments      33,000

    Somehow in this mess, the state still hasn’t been able to get cards loaded for 33 thousand, but was able through a computer malfunction (they say) to double up.  One can now imagine the problems once they try to recollect the double payments as people go hungry again.  I would call it a draw, but that is not what will happen, as you can imagine.

    We will need to start following what happens in the Houston area on emergency food stamps where everyone is still without power and by now have lost whatever food was in the frig.  Maybe there will be a “kinder and gentler” program there.  Just don’t bet your food money on that.