My friend Robert Scheer, an old New Left stalwart, uses the F-word to describe Barack Obama's bank bailout:
I don't think the idea of nationalizing, as it's now being called–which means bailing out these banks, setting them straight, then letting them go private again, which is the model that everybody is using, and the people who get screwed are the people whose retirement funds had common or preferred shares and they get wiped out, and these bankers come out richer than ever at the other end–that's not a leftist idea and it's not socialism. This is what we used to, in Comparative Economic Systems, call fascism. It's putting government at the service of the big financial interests. That's what happened in Italy, that's what happened in Germany, that's what happened in Japan.
While I tend toward reluctance in tossing F-bombs, Scheer's rant points to what will soon become a serious problem for the new president: No matter how hard he spins to the contrary, bailouts just aren't fair. They take responsible people's money (by force!), and hand it to irresponsible people, while dismissing critics of the process as out-of-touch fatcats (even though, as always, the rich have a better chance of being bailed out than the poor, because they can hire lobbyists).