The dilemma, which obviously will trouble the idea, is that a fair market value will throw the banks in jeopardy - they tried to avoid that all the time, that's why we are in this trouble. The fact that the FED and SEC was not powerfully urging this diligence could only have been to avoid mass bankruptcy and therefore failure of the whole system.
All they can do is to take the assets at far higher prices and get a equity share of the firm as an equilibrium, still throwing taxpayers money into risk (high risk). Or straight forward buying the toxic ones far above fair value, locking in humongous losses for taxpayers
I know it's not productive to comment on the past and I am repeating myself but those gentlemen had all the oversight and insight and all they could do is a last second cliff-hanger-let's-screw-the-
Mr. Paulson acts like a lobbyist for Wall Street and, even more specifically so since some of his moves gave Goldman clear advantages. He rejects the idea to cap the income of CEO's thtas why the bailout package is not finalized yet. My feeling is very clearly that a conflict of interest makes him an inadequate person to deal with the situation since he let LEH fail to bailout all others out now - that stinks. He acted when Goldman hit the 80 mark. Bernanke hides in the background anyway and is simply not fit for his job. He may have the intellectual capacity but not the guts to act. President Bush has been hiding most of the time since this happened within his administration. He will enter history books with some of the poorest scores but, more importantly, he made it possible to make the biggest present to the terrorists he says he is fighting. They must be bursting in laughter that the Americans wiped out their biggest accomplishment on their own and are now driving the country into deep recession.
Strange that Mr. Buffett praises the gentlemen so much they do definetely help him out with his engagements and investments but he makes more and more obscure calls - bewildering to me.