So long, dreams of universal health care. Adios, decent educational system for all. Eat shit, crumbling infrastructure of bridges and roads and public buildings. Die, pathetic human beings flooded by unfixed dikes in hurricanes, or straining for unreachable help in a major earthquake, crushed by masonry, wood studs, and national indifference. (And fear not, fearsome Mars, our honorable military, filled with honorable men and women and rockets and bombs and infrared sensors and shrapnel-stuffed "devices," will not be touched by the cost of the precious bailout, but expands and expands even unto world domination!)
Selfishness rules the nation now. It always did, but now it sits on the crown seat, so that each and every one of us may walk by and pay obeisance to king god capitalism, untouchable, beyond criticism, beyond repair, leering down on you and me and our bedraggled children, prostrate, struggling to survive.
This is like standing and looking at the long, long sweep of empty seabottom, pulled back by the massive tsunami current, and waiting for cataclysm. They have announced the total bankruptcy of the system, and you still don't believe you'll have to pay the bill.
Poor, silly, deluded us.
But no fear, for German dramatist Bertolt Brecht and composer Kurt Weill told us "how to survive" as far back as 1928. Here's your new bible. Here's the unbridled truth. Asking the question that ought to be asked, and soon the only question with any relevancy:
What keeps a man alive? It's his compulsionA More Sober Perspective (than me)
to steal and cheat and kick his fellow man in the face.
We have to eat the shit without revulsion
and turn our backs on the human race.
You have to kill your neighbor to survive.
It's selfishness that keeps a man alive.
Edger over at Docudharma conjured up a quote from Nouriel Roubini regarding the unnecessary bailout. Roubini is professor at NYU's Stern School of Business. The selection below is from his blog, RGE Monitor:
Whenever there is a systemic banking crisis there is a need to recapitalize the banking/financial system to avoid an excessive and destructive credit contraction. But purchasing toxic/illiquid assets of the financial system is not the most effective and efficient way to recapitalize the banking system. Such recapitalization - via the use of public resources - can occur in a number of alternative ways: purchase of bad assets/loans; government injection of preferred shares; government injection of common shares; government purchase of subordinated debt; government issuance of government bonds to be placed on the banks' balance sheet; government injection of cash; government credit lines extended to the banks; government assumption of government liabilities.FYI: Link to "discussion draft" of the new "bipartisan" version of the bailout bill, circa September 28, 2008, approximately 106 pages long.
A recent IMF study of 42 systemic banking crises across the world provides evidence on how different crises were resolved. First of all only in 32 of the 42 cases there was government financial intervention of any sort; in 10 cases systemic banking crises were resolved without any government financial intervention.
So this rescue plan is a huge and massive bailout of the shareholders and the unsecured creditors of the financial firms (not just banks but also other non bank financial institutions); with $700 billion of taxpayer money the pockets of reckless bankers and investors have been made fatter under the fake argument that bailing out Wall Street was necessary to rescue Main Street from a severe recession. Instead, the restoration of the financial health of distressed financial firms could have been achieved with a cheaper and better use of public money.
Thus, the Treasury plan is a disgrace: a bailout of reckless bankers, lenders and investors that provides little direct debt relief to borrowers and financially stressed households and that will come at a very high cost to the US taxpayer. And the plan does nothing to resolve the severe stress in money markets and interbank markets that are now close to a systemic meltdown.