Monday, October 6, 2008

How 'Bout That Bailout?

With today's historic sell off, and subsequent continued slump in the Asian markets going on now, one has to wonder what those who sold the bailout are thinking now? I suppose you saw a bit of it in the President's comments, but the bottom line is there isn't going to be some miraculous turnaround.

I'm still glad that Representative Scott Garrett voted against the bailout. Fear and the message that we as a nation can't rise to the challenge of a downturn won the day on Friday. Unfortunately, as today's worldwide market sell off points too, further indebting the American taxpayer without any controls is unlikely to have an impact in the short term. The ugly truth is, there's also no guarantee it will make anything better in the future either. Yet those on Capitol Hill somehow felt it was good to give the people who created this mess even more money to play with.

I realize that Dennis Shulman's campaign is slamming Garrett as being to blame for the crisis, and how people will see it in the long run as it relates to Garrett remains to be seen. The campaign seems to have gotten particularly nasty in the mail on both sides as of late. Shulman attacking Garrett for supporting the flat tax or value added tax; and Garrett's campaign overly darkening a picture of Shulman, apparently blacking out his eyes, falsely claiming that Garrett's plan will lower gas prices immediately. The fact Garrett's even sending out hit pieces at this point makes me wonder what Garrett's polling is showing that he's not ignoring his opponents until late October like previous elections.

Garrett, with his vote against the bailout, stood with his constituents for once. While I kind of doubt voters will blame Garrett alone for the financial crisis, it should be interesting to see how people's moods are in a month when their 401(k)'s still haven't recovered and more of the impact of deregulation is discovered. Just Sunday, 60 Minutes ran a story talking about the $20-30 trillion unregulated credit/default swap shadow market.

It's scary stuff, and this thing is going to get a helluva lot worse before it gets better. At the end of the day we're nearly a trillion more in debt with nothing to show except that our politicians are easily bribed and have little consideration for future generations.

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