Obama's speech included six specific stipulations for any bailout that happens.
1.) No blank check: Americans are going to be on the hook for almost $1,000,000,000,000. It's taxation without representation to just write blank checks without being accountable to taxpayers.
2.) Taxpayer money should not be paid to reward CEOs. Period.
3.) Taxpayers are incurring a great amount of cost and risk. The investments should be protected, and they should be able to eventually recoup the losses.
4.) THERE MUST BE A PLAN TO HELP HOMEOWNERS STAY IN THEIR HOME.
5.) Obama pointed out that this is a global crisis, and that other nations need to step in to help secure the financial market.
6.) REGULATE. REGULATE. REGULATE.
I must say, I'm exceptionally relieved that Obama came out pretty strongly with these qualifications for a bailout. Some of them were pretty well-discussed before, like nothing for CEOs, additional regulation, and help for homeowners. But a couple, notably that other countries need to step up to the plate, are new, and fairly novel, and I think absolutely spot-on. The financial market is a global economy now, and so we can't be the only ones taking responsibility for it.
In all this bailout mess, I've finally seen a spot of hope and intelligence. I hope Obama keeps hammering these points home.