No government bailout here
Those of you who are concerned that Barack Obama's candidacy is representative of, not a liberal philosophy but socialism, might want to take a close look at the government's Wall Street bailout plan. You might see a real example of socialism - corporate socialism - there.
Congress is being urged by the Treasury Department to act quickly on its proposal to inject $700 billion dollars into the financial market. The figure represents the largest government bailout since the Great Depression.
On Friday, Henry Stern, founder of NY Civic
, was my guest on News Talk Online on Paltalk to talk about 24 questions that he believes need to be asked and answered about the financial crisis gripping the nation. Question number one was, and I paraphrase, who is responsible for this near collapse of the financial markets and how will they pay?
The proposed bailout makes Sterns' question academic. Because the people he described as the "fat cats" on Wall Street will now remain both fat and sassy.
Everyday as the worker bees of New York head for the subways, trains, buses, highways and ferries to begin the long, difficult and often expensive commute back home, scores of black luxury cars clog the streets of New York's financial district, waiting for the chosen ones who manage other people's money, to drive them home. Sometimes they head out at the same time as the rest of us. But sometimes they stop for a nice meal at a fancy, expensive steak house or a drink or two at a strip club with clients before being chauffeured to their abodes for a quick night's sleep before heading back in to play with other people's money once again. To them, this may be a necessary cost of business. But to those who have given up the ferry as too expensive in favor of the train, or stopped driving their cars and started taking the bus because of high gasoline prices, the sleek, shiny Lincolns are a symbol of excess. The kind of Wall Street excess that led to today's proposed bailout.
Meanwhile, people who shouldn't have qualified for mortgages for homes that were really beyond their reach face foreclosure. The people who irresponsibly approved their mortgages get a government bailout. But they still lose their homes.
The BBC reported several months ago that tent cities and the number of people living in recreational vehicles are both growing in the United States. These are people who have lost their homes and have no money to buy another or to even rent an apartment.
I'm wondering if there will be a proportional reduction in the number of black cars double parked along Wall Street. My guess is, there will not.
Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/televiseus/379806410/