NPR is reporting that a single piece of paper may be one of the most surprising and illuminating documents of the whole banking crisis.
It's a one-page research note from an economist at Deutsche Bank, and it outlines in the clearest terms the kind of solution many bankers are looking for. The basic message: We should forget trying to get a good deal for taxpayers because even trying will hurt.
"Ultimately, the taxpayer will be on the hook one way or another, either through greatly diminished job prospects and or significantly higher taxes down the line," the document says.
In other words, the paper says, if the government tries to save taxpayers money, many people will lose their jobs and the whole economy will suffer.
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