"Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both." ~ Benjamin Franklin


>> Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Apparently I'm angry... I got a nice long response to my sinking ship post telling me to "Please stop being so angry about this and look at the big picture. "

And while Amanda was very polite in her comment and made some very good points I think that the American people deserve to be angry about this mess. Because the government made it. And now they are asking us to trust them with a huge amount of money that "may or may not" fix the problem. Yeah, I think I have the right to be angry.

And while I agree with Amanda's point that the stock market relies on consumer confidence a bail out - using tax payer funded dollars- is not going to restore that confidence. Yes, I believe the government needs to step in since they are the ones who initially created this mess but throwing good money after bad isn't necessarily the way to do it.

I do have to argue one point, though:

The reason that the Great Depression occured, was because the government sat back and waited, just hoping things would get better. Meanwhile (like today) fear ran rampant, everyone pulled their money out and the economy completely tanked.
The Great Depression wasn't the stock market crash in 1929. Have you read The Forgotten Man? It's a history of the Great Depression. There is a great interview with the author here on CNN. It was the failed policies of government that drew out the depression. The stock market crash affected other countries, too, yet we were the only one who had a "great" depression... And it was the beginning of our ever increasing "entitled" society. Which is why Kennedy's "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country" speech hit people so hard.

The problem doesn't lie with the people or with capitalism... The problem lies with the government and their sticky fingers in every pie. And, with this bail out, the government will only be bigger, have more regulations and become more socialist. This problem won't disappear with $700 billion. And if we don't voice our displeasure with it now then we probably deserve what we get.

Update (Doug): Yet another reason to get Congress out of "bailout" mode. They keep adding stupid things to the bill.


Lisa 4:27 PM  

Amanda is right, you are angry and I'm sorry to say way off base. It isn't the government's 'sticky fingers' behind the crisis. The lack of regulation and government oversight over newly created financial products allowed the free market to completely overstretch. Wall Street whipped itself into frenzy and risks the entire thing crashing and burning. The government is trying to put a foundation under the whole thing before everyone yanks all the money out. The only thing I will agree with you on is that the Great Depression probably isn't the best analogy. I would look at what happened to Japan 20 years ago. Same overstretch same delay and lack of response from the government and a desire to let the market correct itself. Their stock market is still only something like 75% was before their recession. I think that even free market fanatics can agree that there are limits and imperfections that only the government can address, i.e. imperfect information, fraud etc. It was your no government republican administration - which has had control of the leg and exec branch the majority of the last decade that systematically dismantled controls and delayed oversight development for these emerging financial products. I cannot understand AT ALL what you can mean when you say it is the gov's 'sticky fingers' that got us into this mess.

Doug H 5:18 PM  

Yes, actually the government did open the door to this. Greed took care of the rest.

Greed of the politicians most of all.

Doug H 5:20 PM  

Government also hurt the free market with Freddie and Fannie. I think we can all agree on that.

Jody 8:00 PM  

Lisa- I would ask you to follow the links Doug provided. And to also check out other posts where I point out just how the government did, in fact, begin this mess.

The only thing I didn't say, which I thought everyone knew, if that Fannie & Freddie were government run agencies- how much more oversite do you want?

And, as for the government's sticky fingers... start here....

And then let me ask... After seeing the pages of pork that our Senators passed yesterday tell me that this isn't out of control...

They all need to be gone... I don't care what letter is after their name.

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