Sep 292008
 

I’ve been joking with a co-worker this afternoon that, given what happened today with the economic bailout package, and Wall Street’s reaction, we need to get to the grocery store to buy canned goods and ammo. Unfortunately, that may not be too far from reality. Most of the Republicans, and enough Democrats voted against the bail out plan that it failed and the Dow Jones Industrial Average nose-dived over 777 points. That’s the largest one day drop ever.

So what will happen next? I’m not sure, but this can easily turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy resulting in a downward spiral. The Asian and European markets will most likely have huge drops over night, which could result in even more declines on Wall Street tomorrow when trading resumes. I’m sure the pundits and reporters, along with the analysts, are all wringing their hands and predicting the end of the world as we know it, and that could cause just that result as confidence tumbles.

I’ve been getting emails from some outfit called True Majority. They’ve been stirring the pot, along with other organizations, to get people to contact their representatives and oppose the bailout. They think this a good thing, and that now Congress can fix things by:

  • Putting real regulations back on runaway financial corporations, and taking an ownership stake in exchange for any taxpayer support
  • Providing mortgage relief so ordinary Americans stop losing their homes
  • Putting millions to work by investing in new green jobs and infrastructure
  • Investing in a health care plan to cover everyone

These are all certainly noble goals, and the whole Reaganomics idea that wealth trickles down has never worked. The wealthy get more wealthy only when the economy is producing jobs, and people have money to spend. This enriches those that own the means of production and the raw materials. Reaganomics shuts down the creation of additional wealth, and all the Bush Administration and the Republicans have done is enable a transfer of the existing wealth to a select few of their friends. Now it’s all been accumulated, and no additional wealth is being created.

The bullets above, published by this True Majority outfit, will result in the creation of new and additional wealth, and everyone can participate, so it’s a good thing, but these are long term fixes. If the economy completely crashes, none of the shit above means anything, as there won’t be the resources to accomplish it.

There is no doubt I have to hold my nose while supporting this bailout. It sucks, and I’m glad some goodies were added in for middle and lower income taxpayers, but no one benefits if the entire house of cards comes tumbling down. Sure, the economy will most likely right itself without intervention…eventually. That “eventually” part is the tough part though. In the meantime every middle and lower income American could be in for the suffering that comes from a deep and long-running recession (or even depression).

Even Warren Buffet, known for keeping a cool head in times of panic, warned Congress that failing to enact bailout would result in an economic meltdown. I admit I’m no economics professor, but Buffet seems to know a thing or two about the economy, and if he’s worried, then so am I.

So, with nose held, I call on Joe Sixpack and the people at True Majority to get realistic, and recognize that something has to be done now (like it or not) to level things out. Once the dust settles, we can put all their ideals into place. I’m all for it. In the mean time, you’d better call your Congressperson’s office, and tell them to get something in place quickly.

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