Mark Cuban has a new project, BailoutSleuth, "to help ensure that the [bailout] process, including the selection and compensation of contractors, is as transparent as possible."

I am shocked and surprised to tell you the transparency is already inadequate:


The Treasury Department has hired three outside firms this week to help administer its $700 billion, taxpayer-funded bailout of troubled banks. But some key details of those contracts remain a mystery.


The agreements with Bank of New York Mellon Corp. and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP that the Treasury Department posted on its web site each had blacked-out paragraphs in the sections dealing with compensation.


The government’s three-year contract with Bank of New York Mellon does not show how much the company will be paid to act as the master custodian of the bailout fund. The contract says that the bank will be paid a monthly fee, but that fee is blacked out.


The Treasury Department’s six-month deal with Simpson Thacher for legal advice on equity purchases in U.S. banks has a value of $300,000. But the contract posted on the Treasury Department’s web site Thursday did not show the hourly rates the government will be paying the firm. The figures for all the employee classifications, from partner to legal assistant, were redacted.


While we’re at it, can I get a conflicts list before Foxes & Wolves, LLP, is given the keys to the hen house? Some of us clients are not so understanding.

 (via Open Congress)