Our President read a speech to the nation tonite, and it wasn’t pretty. There wasn’t passion, there wasn’t excitement. There WAS fear – fear his lasting legacy will be economic ruin of the whole country and having the Repubican party crushed in the Presidential and Congressional elections a few weeks from now.
Maybe it’s response to Huckabee’s blog today. Huckabee was embarrassed for the Republican party today, blasting the bailout. He says it is a case of “asking the taxpayers to suck up the staggering results of the hubris, greed, and arrogance of those who sought to make a quick buck by throwing the dice. They lost, but want the rest of us to cover their bets so they won’t be effected in their lavish lifestyles as they figure out how to spend their tens of millions and in some cases, hundreds of millions in bonuses and compensation which was their reward for not only sinking their companies, but basically doing the same to the entire American economy. ”
On the Tonite Show tonite, Leno did the math for us, saying it’s $7k per family, an extra $300 a month for each of us, on top of the boosted cost of gasoline. Meanwhile, the CEOs that did the deed are getting tens of millions of dollars in severance pay when the company goes under.
But what really got me was when the President said the problem came because some folks tried to buy houses they couldn’t afford, hoping to sell out when the price went up. It wasn’t the poor folks trying to get into home ownership that sank the economy. It wasn’t even the folks buying distressed properties to “flip that house” for a quick buck.
What caused this mess was slick bankers and money traders, and the slimeball mortgage brokers who promised low rates, but tricked folks into loans they couldn’t afford and couldn’t refinance. They lost their houses, which drove down the prices of new houses. All those foreclosures made those fancy “financial instruments” worthless. That pulled down the stock market (the same stock market Bush wanted to put all our Social Security savings into) and meant the brokers and money traders took a “beating” in their multi-million-dollar virtual portfolios.
As Huckabee summed it up: “Wall Street has become Las Vegas east, but at least in Vegas, people KNOW they are gambling and they don’t expect the government to cover their losses at the tables. In Wall Street, they do. And the American taxpayer burdens the responsibility.”
If the taxpayer ends up buying the loans, it should be for pennies on the dollar, and the Treasury department should sieze the assets of the brokers who invented this scheme back in the Clinton 90s.