My thoughts on the financial meltdown

I need to speak my piece about the financial crisis facing America. This will be free form but take from it what you will.

Real people

Many families are in a situation where the only real safety net is that of other family members who are relatively well off. To be clear, we are not talking about McCain rich; rather I am defining well off by having good credit and being able to give “loans” to the family that rarely get paid back. These family anchors (including some in my own family) are being wiped out with this economic crisis. And I am tired of real people being categorized as “Main Street” and banks being characterized as “Wall Street.” This level of distance from real people in our media leaves everyone and no one responsible for our current crisis. In the end, the real victims are faceless and nameless.

Priorities

I recall when the drumbeat for the Iraq War was upon us and I was thinking to myself, “People can’t see this happening!” And now when the presidential campaign is finally getting off its Palin pinge, boom, the worst crisis since the Great Depression. I know not many people experienced that economic nightmare but when the MSM makes regular comparisons to the Great Depression, things are really jacked up. Does it mean anything to anybody that Bush’s proposal is already costing more than the Iraq war? We can’t afford quality education or universal health care though, right?

What I also hate is that talking heads essentially concede the whole plan before they say anything else. I read a post by Otto Spengler (via Alternet) that reads in part,

Why are the voices raised in protest so shrill and few? Why will Americans fall on their fountain-pens for their bankers? If America is to adopt socialism, why not have socialism for the poor, rather than for the rich? Why should American households that earn $50,000 a year subsidize Goldman Sachs partners who earn $5 million a year?

This is out of control on so many levels. Do you remember how the Iraq War was supposed to pay for itself? The same folks are telling us that the government (and taxpayers by extension) bailouts are going to end up paying for itself. This is real money we are talking about and guess who is going to have to pay for it, young people.

Accountability

In the legislation proposed that Bush and Paulson want ASAP, there is a portion that says, “Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.” Congress would do well to really fulfill that whole checks and balances thing that the Founders intended. I knew our democracy was flawed but I get the sense that the bottom is falling out. No accountability for a lame duck President, are you crazy??!?!?!?!

And I think something can be said for some (via Paul Krugman at the New York Times) that are

calling the proposed legislation the Authorization for Use of Financial Force, after the Authorization for Use of Military Force, the infamous bill that gave the Bush administration the green light to invade Iraq.

Paulson and Bush are saying we need this bill back in matter of days. Do you expect any legislator will have time enough to read, reflect, and adequately debate this bill? Just like we have seen with the lead up to the war and domestic surveillance, fear mongering is not an adequate way to govern. For those that have kids, you know that whenever your kid wants you to sign something (like a disciplinary note from a teacher) really fast without wanting you to read it, they are up to no good and whereas you would have signed it without fanfare, your kids trying to rush it through made you suspicious. The same principle applies to Bush so if any Congressional folks are reading this, do your job and put the needs of real families above those of corporate executives.

That is it for now,

Stay up fam,

Brandon Q.

UPDATE 1: By the way, if you don’t think voting for President, get a grip. McCain can not simultaneously be pro-Bush, anti-Bush, pro-regulation and pro-deregulation at the same time. McCain’s lies are beyond the pale and I really need you to get on board hard for Obama, for real!

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