"The principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale." --Thomas Jefferson

Monday, September 29

End of an Era

I'm trying to look for the good today people I promise....

Imagine my surprise when I returned from lunch today to see the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 777 points. Looks like Congress has defected again. They will be out until Thursday celebrating the Jewish Holidays while our economy sinks into oblivion. If I were a Jew, I wouldn't care if someone worked on a holiday if it meant this much to my country. Are we going to start taking personal days now so we can observe Wiccan holidays? I hear Witch Burning days are mid to late October. Nancy Pelosi has a CHUGG nomination for a front row seat to that one. Chick scares me.

We are back to partisan bickering and politics as usual. I thought, naively, that perhaps the country could take front seat over who gets reelected for once. I have tried hard not to just take on someone else's opinion in this matter and think it out for myself. I don't know why just now, members of congress and the house are pointing so many fingers at each other. Give me a break...Barney Frank, Chairman of the Financial Oversight Committee was apparently scarfing down his morning box of Twinkies for the last 10 years while all this mismanagement was happening right under his nose. Maybe his nose was full of cream filling. If we want to fire CEO's who mismanaged major corporations and misled stockholders, let's have equal criticism for members of congress that didn't do their jobs on these committees or were so unbelievably ignorant as to not see this coming. If I were in charge of Golden Parachutes for Congress, I would make sure that Mr. Frank's severance package contained some Twinkies. You can't expect the guy to go cold turkey!

I am a conservative. That is, I believe in accountability, personal responsibility and the idea that government is not the solution to everything. Ronald Reagan once said, "Government is not the solution to the problem, government is the problem."

I understand that we need elected representatives to vote for us on important issues such as these. If there was one bright spot on a very cloudy day, it was that the voice of the American people manifest itself on Capital Hill today. Many more Americans were against a Wall Street bailout than were for it. In the back of my mind, I wanted to see something come forward, presented by both parties in a civilized manner that would help all of our investment accounts and protect the little guy.

Truth be told, I thought that the way the Bush Administration asked for a lobbied congress to pass the bill was wrong and all too familiar. My way or the highway-both Democrats and Republicans. I think President Bush is a well intentioned man in most regards, however I disagree considerably with his ability to lead and manage a situation entirely. If this President is a conservative then Nancy Pelosi is Margaret Thatcher. The man is not a conservative. I thought it was put well when I heard someone say tonight that asking Congress and the Financial Oversight committee to fix this problem was like them burning the Thanksgiving turkey and then asking them to cook Christmas dinner. Republicans have purposed a plan to use the free markets and insurance to help the economy. I think this avenue should be explored. How about an open discussion for an idea from the citizens of the country? We have brilliant minds in this country-not just in Washington D.C. Contrary to their own belief, they are not gods.

If I am honest with myself, I and my family have benefited greatly from the good economic growth and "the way things were" in America. Three years ago, I didn't have $100k to put down on a house. But I live in a great neighborhood now. I think we are seeing the end of an era. Things are probably going to look pretty grim for a while but guess what.....we knew they would didn't we? I mean how long have we been counseled to have food and supplies on hand?

Another bright spot in this whole mess-Wall Street greed and unethical practices are being exposed, brought to the front page and the people are talking about it. And they are mad. Are you reading this? Will you talk about it? Will you tell other people to read and talk about it? Yes. And that is a great thing. I just hope we don't forget as quickly as we did after the tech bubble burst.

It's called the pride cycle and I think I have read about it somewhere ..... where was it?

Another truth be told. We are a resilient people. We will come back from anything. It may take some time but I believe in the goodness and hard work of Americans.

Bottom line...we should not become a communist country. We should not abandon our morals. We should not initiate corporate welfare for Wall Street. We should just do what is best for our country and it's citizens.

One more word of advice...listen to conference this weekend.


Carlee Hoopes said...

Interesting. I'm like you. I wanted a fix to this because it's scary. I don't like feeling uneasy about things. However, I think passing the bailout package would have been a huge mistake. The government has no place rescuing us. The big banks got themselves into this mess, so they should have to figure out a way to get themselves out. The government needs to draft legislation that will protect the people who had nothing to do with this, like me and you, instead of trying to bail out Wall Street and thus not hold them accountable. I feel that the bailout package was just one more way that the government was trying to steal bits and pieces of our freedom away from us (a.k.a. communism). And unfortunately, people are willing to accept whatever will make them feel safe.

Kirk said...

There will however eventually be something put forth that not everyone is going to agree with. The government is the only entity big enough to do anything. I think that there are going to be ways to eliviate some of the hurt in the situation without just buying up all the bad debts. The only reason this was the first plan was because it is just like the Resolution Trust Corporation set up to deal with the Savings and Loan disaster in the early 90's. Yet another lesson we have forgotten too quickly. What would you suggest as a plan?

Carlee Hoopes said...

I don't really know yet. All I know is that giving them the money and just bailing them out won't solve anything. There needs to be a way to punish the big wigs on Wall Street that created this mess. Otherwise, they will just do it again. The bailout as proposed would have punished the taxpayers who didn't create the mess and basically would have allowed the big banks to go away unscathed. I'm thinking perhaps a loan that would have to be repaid in full may be a step in the right direction, but I don't know if that would solve things either. I also know that I don't want the federal government owning my home. That's not their place. What do you think?

Kirk said...

As I have said before, I think that the big wigs should need to own up to their mistakes and mismanagement. This goes for government officials that were severely negligent in their duties, crooked home builders, lending companies, appraisers that over valued and banks that encouraged such activity. I also think that a large number of Americans were extremely stupid when taking out these mortgages they either new they couldn't afford or they were just too dumb to realize they were being taken and looked over the fine print. There is alot of fault to go around. I believe something has to be done and I know it will not be a perfect scenario but we might have to live with it for a while.

The Bodacious Barlows said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Bodacious Barlows said...

Hey Kirk, let me know what you think about this guy. I wish they were all like this.


Carlee Hoopes said...

And Amen to that!

Cara said...

Kirk, I enjoy reading your creative political commentary. If any good is to be had from the problems in the world today, it may be that at least people are waking up and paying attention to politics. But still not many are as openly passionate about it as you seem to be. Good for you. :)