It seems like more and more these days everyone is running from one end of Washington to the other, with cap in hand asking for money, power and things that they don’t deserve. The latest pleadings come from none other than that master of Turbo Tax, Sec. of the Treasury Tim Geithner. Today Turbo Tim was on the Hill, hand out, asking for more power to oversee non-bank financial companies, such as AIG and the like.

In short, the government does not need more power. The Secretary of the Treasury does not need powers the Constitution does not allow him to have. The government needs to enforce the existing laws, and use regulatory agencies like the Federal Trade Commission and the Securities and Exchange Commission and the FBI to do this. When companies like AIG do fail, because lets face it, when your company comes to the government four times and gets more than $180B you’ve already failed, go after the people who took those companies to failure and then let the company fail. When Enron failed a few years back Ken Lay was a dirty word, and had he not kicked the bucket, he would be rotting in jail. Funny how the top guy at AIG is not a name you hear at all in the news and will not be near a jail cell anytime soon.

If the Congress wants to create an FDIC-like agency to oversee non-financial companies like AIG, fine do that, but don’t just give power to one person. But in the end there is always a risk when you invest and no amount of regulation or speech making will take that away. We have to be prepared to fail and this is a concept that the Obama administration does not seem to get.

Finally, when the Congress does give Mr. Geithner the power he’s requesting (because you know they will, I suspect the visit to the Hill today was just for the folks out there in TV land), when will that power be taken back, if ever? How will the American public and the business community be assured that this power will not be abused? Who will decide what non-financial companies are too big to fail and in the end, what will constitute “too big to fail”? What will be the long-term effects of this power grab? I don’t see giving Geithner more power restoring confidence in the markets and business