Monday, February 2, 2009

Americanism and Protectionism Revived.

"WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Dallas Federal Reserve President Richard Fisher warned on Monday against "Buy America" provisions in a proposed fiscal stimulus law and said it could lead to devastating trade protectionism.

"Let me just be blunt. Protectionism is the crack cocaine of economics. It may provide a high. It's addictive and it leads to economic death," Fisher told C-Span television in an interview for its "Washington Journal" program."

"WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner will meet again on Monday with top regulators and also with the chairman of the House of Representatives Financial Services Committee to discuss how to move ahead with an economic recovery plan.

The Treasury department said Geithner will meet Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila Bair and Comptroller of the Currency John Dugan to continue talks on financial and regulatory reform.

Treasury said the meeting with Bernanke, Bair and Dugan was to "continue ongoing discussions about financial and regulatory reform."

The Obama administration is trying to come up with a plan for stabilizing the banking system at the same time that it is attempting to persuade Congress to approve a nearly $900-billion stimulus plan through Congress by mid-February."

"WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Facing opposition from Republican lawmakers to parts of his economic recovery plan, President Barack Obama called Democratic Congressional leaders to a meeting on Monday to drive home his message of urgency.

With hundreds of thousands of Americans losing their jobs, many their homes, and a rapidly shrinking economy, Obama is under pressure to move swiftly to get his nearly $900 billion plan through Congress by mid-February.

Senior Republican senators warned on Sunday their party was unlikely to back the stimulus bill without changes to cut waste and to ensure the package provides an immediate boost to the deteriorating economy."

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