Editorials on Bailout

The Thinkers by Bea Garth, copyright 2008, pen and ink

The Thinkers by Bea Garth, copyright 2008, pen and ink

Editorial by Bea Garth,
copyright 2008

Just want to say that in the aftermath of the vote to go ahead with the bailout on Friday, I found many of us  speechless, me included.  At first yesterday I just couldn’t put my head around it. It was and is a huge “fix” like giving an addict money for cocaine, crack or heroin — wherein he or she promises  “Yeah buddy, I am really going to change my ways, don’t you believe me?” And then just walks away laughing after you give him or her the money. You just know what they are going to do next.

The comment here recently given by Graeme Jones on this subject seems to be correct. People involved in high finance and the “Religion of Capitalism” just can’t see what everyone else sees as the obvious needed treatment for our financial problems (or just aren’t telling you) — stanch the wound where it bleeds: stop rising mortgage rates, and perhaps even roll them back to where they were 6 months or a year ago. And use some of those billions of dollars to give small business and people who want to own their own home etc. low (or at least reasonable) cost loans. Plus change accounting back to how it used to be when things were valued at their real value rather than some  version of the roller coaster stock market.

Now here we are with even Mr. President Bush (as well as now a whole bevy of commentators–now that the vote has already happened and was quickly signed into law) admitting his “emergency plan” won’t work unless x, y and z is done — which of course is left up to the “good-will” of the predator banks and other wayward financial institutions. As one commentator said, if they just sit on the money it won’t do the country (or the world for that matter) a whole lot of good. Its like Bush, Paulson and their “Pirates on Wall Street” are saying “Hey, can we take the silverware on our way out? How about the chandeliers and while we are at it we like the jewelry too! And yeah, you can just lie there kicked in the stomach. We’ve got ours!” with a wink (if they bother) or some such ilk.

In case you don’t get it, we the  people of the United States of America just got ripped off. And it wasn’t like we didn’t complain. Calls to Congress were 99 against to 1 for the Bail-out. However Congress decided they were “wiser” than us.  So wise they couldn’t even take a month to deliberate on this important issue, or put in temporary emergency fixes until after the election that would have represented responsible legal corrections without the huge Bail-out.

I  wonder what it will mean for us who do the creative work to make sense of this country as well as just the man and woman and kid on the street, not to speak of the sick and elderly etc. How will we respond? What will we do? Obviously we will be more on our own from now on out…

A friend of mine suggested it might be a liberation. I think Mr. Jones would agree. I certainly hope so. However we will have to work to make it so rather than just have endless, chaotic suffering.

Bea

Eye On Bail Out

Editorial by Bea Garth

Please note my editorial on the Commentary Page (Social and Political) about the $700 Bail-Out. It is my hope this won’t transpire, however it looks like it very likely will either today (Monday) or Wednesday by the latest. Its unbelievable but true. Alice In Wonderland’s Mad Hatter and Queen of Hearts could hardly pull off such an unlikely stunt but there it is. Enough said, but if you’d like to say more please feel free. And look to the Commentary page for more from me. I plan to keep an eye on its “progress” so to speak as time goes on.

And look to the possible links (”tags”) below to see what others are thinking…

“The measure went down 228-205, with more than two-thirds of McCain’s own Republicans and 40 percent of Democrats opposed.” Yay!! Maybe now Congress can engineer something that may actually have a chance to  realistically work rather than partly bail out the many companies that created this problem to begin with. We don’t need a bandaid. We need to stanch the place we are bleeding by putting a cap on rising mortgage rates etc. etc.

5 replies

  1. The only guy who’s made any sense of this bailout is Dennis Kucinich. He voted against the bailout as they all should have. Here’s part of his speech:

    Kucinich: Why? Why? Why?
    Rule of Gold Replaced Golden Rule

    WASHINGTON – October 3 – Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) today gave the following speech regarding the proposed Wall Street bailout on the floor of the House:

    “We have come a great distance in seventy-five years; from the New Deal to the Raw Deal, from having nothing to fear but fear itself, to being afraid of everything. We traded democracy’s warm heart containing the ideals of faith, fairness and frugality, for the greedy, cold calculations of the Dow Jones ticker. The New Deal saved free market capitalism with jobs and regulation; now both sink in the swamp of speculation, manipulation and capitulation. The Golden Rule of “do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” is submerged by the rule of gold, “do unto others before they do unto you.”

    “Some people will ask of this Congress, what were we thinking? Why did we give $700 billion bailout to Wall Street without fixing what caused the problem in the first place? Why did we rig the free markets for security fraudsters? Why didn’t we explore alternatives to let Wall Street solve its own problems? Why didn’t we have money save millions of homeowners, create millions of jobs, and a green economy? Why didn’t we stop the speculators? Why wasn’t there accountability? Why didn’t we take time to make an intelligent decision?
    Why? Why? Why?”

    It feels like the Fall of Rome all over again except they lasted a lot longer than we did and had more to show for it. I’m trying to remain positive but it does make my blood boil and stomach sick to see so many literally without while the Wall Street Execs get to relieve their stress at their homes in Hamptons. I’m glad you wrote what you did on Eos…this decision will not be forgotten – by my children and probably their grandchildren, too. $700 Billion is perhaps too much for the public to fully understand or realize so it’s swept under the rug. I think it’s Bush’s last dig before leaving the White House – good riddance!!!

    in venting we stand,
    Kelly

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  2. I agree with the above sentiment by reallymadvoter but don’t really entirely feel comfortable with the method since I don’t usually like looking at things in such stark simplicity. However I do agree one should look at this option long and hard, so I will think about it and am sharing it here for others to consider.

    Congress seems to feel it can just ignore the people, as well as the facts of what could reasonably help our economy, something that is unwise in the best of times. Although I can understand their desire to just go with more of the same (since it is all they know given most aren’t economists) it still doesn’t let them off the hook (many economists were telling them it was a bad idea if the congress-people were there to listen).

    The bottom line is that they shouldn’t have been in such a hurry to pass this deal–especially with Mercury Retrograde going on and a gathering Saturn opposing Uranus which will be exact the day after the election (a little side note for the astrologers out there–all of which astrological activity indicates mental confusion and fear as well as structural crumbling revealed under the powerful light of sudden and unexpected bolts of lightening).

    There are some however that do seem to want to make better structural changes even though they felt they had to do something now and that meant this was it since otherwise our financial house of cards was going to crumble before the new year. I disagree — they could have come up with a variety of sound alternatives that wouldn’t have cost $700 billion which could have been done quickly enough. But they in their confusion and fear did not see that. The congress members aren’t necessarily all bad; they are caught up in something bigger than themselves and, being unprepared and misguided, they missed the boat.

    Still it is intriguing to boot them out. But, given my bias, I would have to think long and hard to support any Republicans. And its rather late in the game to think the Greens or Libertarians will get in. I no doubt will vote for the Democrats just to get Bush’s cronies out of office.

    Nevertheless I do feel pretty politicized about all this. Normally I would be in my studio tonight creating art after all. I do feel like Americans have been given a huge wake up call. Where it will take us exactly is up to us. This no doubt will go way beyond the election.
    —–Bea

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  3. reallymadvoter

    I took the pledge – Have you?

    Well the congress has done it.

    As of the morning of the bail out vote in the House of Representatives, polls showed that the American people were 74% against any bail out for the Wall Street fat cats. We wanted a fix from the bottom up and not from the top down. Fix ‘Main Street’ not Wall Street we told them. They didn’t do it.

    However they did agree with the bloated $700 billion the Senate passed for their greedy Wall Street friends with another $150 Billion of Pork. So now our children are on the hook for at least $850 billion and no one can tell us if it will work or will be the last.

    Meanwhile, ‘We The People’ continue to lose our jobs and homes.

    Our elected representatives have chosen to ignore us, ‘We The People’ whom they swore to represent.

    They think we are stupid. They think we don’t have the guts to clean house. They think ‘they know better’ than we on ‘Main Street’ do.

    So…

    I have taken the Pledge:

    I, (put your name here), will NOT vote for any incumbent in the upcoming election regardless of party or who the opposition may be. I intend to do my part in ‘throwing the bums out’ in Washington that continue spending my money on those that have wrecked our economy rather than the people who sent them there. This is my solemn pledge.

    Mail this to your Representative and Senators, to all your friends and all news media, both local and national. Email this to all the talking heads on the cable outlets, Lou Dobbs, Bill O’Reilly, Keith Olbermann, Chris Matthews, Alan Colmes, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh and with every blog and talk show host you know of.

    Urge everyone you meet to take the Pledge.

    This the only way we, the American People, will ever take back our own government.

    They keep telling us that the only power we have is the vote. So… For once let’s use it!!!!!

    Believe me… if we turn them all out THERE WILL BE CHANGE!!!!

    Do we have the guts? Do you???

    If not, then you don’t have any right to complain if they continue to screw us over.

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  4. Comment:

    I noticed on the PBS news on Oct 1 that the banking crisis is roiling in Europe almost as much as it is in USA. It is interesting to note that the European banks have drunk the American Hemlock.

    As the Europeans begin to suffer from a meltdown in their own banking system what do you think it will be like for them knowing that they are going into mass suffering because their banks caught a fatal disease by purchasing American assets?

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  5. Comment:

    It is very understandable that Americans will want the economy “fixed.” But the deeper reality is that Capitalist global power relations, mediated through the hegemony of the global banking elite, is an impediment to human evolution. This hegemonic elite are incapable of allowing a comprehensive solution to the global warming issue. That is vital.

    Hence the deeper truth is that the collapse of the world banking system must be celebrated as an evolutionary deliverance from collective human failure. The enormous shared pain that is attendant with this is actually a vital piece of human salvation. This is why evolution has
    so arranged it that it is simply impossible for America to fix its current financial crisis inside the paradigm of capitalist power relations.

    So let the bail out come forward, and fail. But let us not give into fear, trust the process.

    Here is Paul Roberts on Counterpunch:

    “Over the last 20 years the US has made a collection of serious mistakes that may yet prove fatal. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the US government launched a policy of world hegemony for which it lacked the means. The US government permitted much of its manufacturing base to be located offshore to the point of even being dependent on imports for its military capability. The US government deregulated the financial sector and permitted the rise of new highly leveraged financial instruments whose failures currently threaten the US with economic collapse.

    University of Maryland economist Herman E. Daly points out that the current crisis is really one of the “overgrowth of financial assets relative to growth of real wealth.” Daly believes that financial assets have grown by a large multiple of the real economy and that paper exchanging for paper is now 20 times greater than exchanges of paper
    for real commodities. Exploding debt liens have simply outgrown the wealth.

    The problem, in other words, cannot be bailed out. Historically, debt that cannot be redeemed has been repealed by inflation. The same inflation that wipes out debt will wipe out savings.

    A failed bailout is the worst possible outcome. The chance of failure rises if the US government tries to turn bad private debt into good public debt without regard to the expansion of the public debt.”

    Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions. He can be reached at:
    PaulCraigRoberts@yahoo.com

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