Bush's 13-minute speech was a compendium of evasions, half-truths and outright lies. While declaring that the United States is "in the midst of a serious financial crisis" and demanding the immediate passage of legislation that will hand over at least $700 billion to Wall Street banks—by buying up their unsalable assets at inflated prices and placing the burden for their losses on millions of working class families—Bush offered no credible explanation of the cause of the crisis. Nor did he explain how the proposed bailout of the bank will be implemented, let alone how it will stave off economic disaster for the working class.
His claim that the "rescue effort" will "help American consumers and businesses get credit to meet their daily needs and create jobs" is patently untrue. There is a consensus in the financial press, especially outside the United States, that the bailout will accelerate the descent of the American and world economy into the deepest recession, if not depression, since the end of World War II.
"I know many Americans have questions tonight," Bush stated. "How did we reach this point in our economy? How will the solution I propose work? And what does this mean for your financial future?"
"These are good questions," he continued, "and they deserve clear answers."
But no such answers were provided by Bush. Instead, he offered a bizarre narrative which presented the unfolding disaster as if it were the result of inexplicable cosmic forces.