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Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Dodd: No Fine Restaurants for Bankers

Fortune magazine points out that bonuses are just one part of what Chris Dodd and Barney Frank are trying to regulate for banks. They are also trying to regulate which restaurants are deemed acceptable and which are deemed excessive.

Instead of using the Zagat guide, TARP recipients may be expected to work from a list of restaurants "identified by the Secretary" of the Treasury, since by law he must now specify which entertainment expenditures are "excessive." Thus, a Washington civil servant could end up judging whether a Manhattan banker can take good customers to dinner at Per Se, or whether TGIF might be elegant enough to close a deal. Your tax dollars at work.

Nothing like an efficient nanny state.