Kovacevich is right on target. These huge bank settlements are election-year ATMs for the Obama administration. It was $12 billion for JP Morgan, another $7 billion for Citigroup and on and on. It's a real shakedown.
In fact, no one even remotely knows how these penalty-payment numbers are calculated. And the federal government's disbursement of these funds is equally mysterious. As the Wall Street Journal editorial page has pointed out, a lot of money has gone to states run by Democratic governors. Yup.
And in the $7 billion Citibank settlement, there's a section explaining how $2.5 billion goes to "community reinvestment and neighborhood stabilization." What's that mean?
All this sounds suspiciously like the housing version of the ACORN electioneering operations. In other words, community organizers. In other words, left-wing groups who had absolutely nothing to do with the credit crisis.
But this shakedown isn't isolated to banks. In spirit, it extends to all businesses. It's the Team Obama way.