Bill Steigerwald

Cody Willard, 36, has been causing a stir on and off the Fox Business Network, the upstart business channel that’s piped via cable and satellite into about 45 million American homes. It’s not because the co-host of the network’s “Happy Hour” has long hair, has his own rock band or because he is the principal of a hedge fund. It’s mainly because he’s been ranting daily on the misuse of government money to bail out the big banks and irresponsible Wall Street financial houses that he believes do not deserve to be bailed out. Willard, who’s been a featured columnist for the Financial Times and, does his show live in New York City each weekday at 5 p.m. from the Waldorf Astoria’s Bull & Bear bar, which is where he was when I talked to him late Thursday afternoon.

Q: If I met you in a bar and asked you to tell me what the stimulus plan was all about in 30 seconds, how would you sum it all up?

A: It is the single largest money and power grab by the socialist Republican/Democrat regime in power that we have ever seen in the history of this country.

Q: Who are the good guys and the bad guys?

A: The good guys are the hard-working American people who save and are responsible and have been taking care of their bills. The bad guys are the Republicans and Democrats and all their cronies and everyone else who is putting their hands in all the renters’ and savers’ pockets and redistributing and appropriating that wealth.

Q: You are famous for being really, really opposed to the bailout. What are your chief reasons?

A: First of all, we didn’t need the quote-unquote "bailout," the TARP (Troubled Assets Relief Program) bailout, the Wall Street bailout, because we have laws in place. We have private property laws and rule of contract law in place, and that is what is supposed to be the driver of the American economy and the American society. Whereas today, what the TARP did was basically create anarchy. It eliminated personal and corporate accountability. Not only that, but instead of punishing and allowing the consequences of people's and corporations’ actions to dictate where they are in life, we instead, again, appropriate and confiscate wealth from savers and renters and those who have been responsible and we have given it in the form of welfare to these incredibly rich and powerful bankers.

Q: What would say is the prime cause of the economic meltdown that has resulted in this real or perceived need for a bailout?

Bill Steigerwald

Bill Steigerwald, born and raised in Pittsburgh, is a former L.A. Times copy editor and free-lancer who also worked as a docudrama researcher for CBS-TV in Hollywood before becoming a reporter for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and a columnist Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Bill Steigerwald recently retired from daily newspaper journalism..