The majority-Democrat Congress which we installed in 2006 (the one that took "impeachment off the table" and subsequently approved every dollar Bush asked for his war) and which we re-installed in 2008--was recently complicit in, or slept through, the gifting of 700 billions of the people's dollars to the Wall Street failures, 70 odd billions to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and several (?) hundred more billions in sneaky tax breaks to the banks, all in the past several weeks, with virtually zero oversight.
The $700 billion gift fund was entrusted into the hands of a 35-year- old ex-Goldman-Sachs investment-banking protégé of our ex-Goldman-Sachs Secretary of the Treasury, to confer as HE SEES FIT to the very same investment bankers who were central to creating the financial crisis, their multi-million dollar bonuses notwithstanding. We are GIVEN TO UNDERSTAND that one-half of the 700 bil has now been disbursed, but no one appears to understand to whom, on what basis, and if indeed we can ever expect to be repaid. Phase 1 is complete: half the boodle is simply gone!
Now come the automobile CEO's, wanting a $15 billion loan, signed, sealed and secured. That is merely two percent of the bankers' larceny. And what is the reaction? Well, Bush tries dismissing them out of hand. And our majority-Democrat Congress rises in indignation, holds hearings, issues hostile statements to the press, visits the TV news shlocks to parade their vigilance in defending the public weal, and pridefully exhibits disdain of American manufacturing management in general.
Well, after all, money--especially the peoples' money--is money. I hope we are not missing the distorted sense of proportion here: we're talking a mere two percent of the bankers' swindle, actually perhaps just one percent when the full measure of the financial crime is exposed.
Relativity or merit is not the important issue. The important issue is JOBS. The $700 bil will have no direct impact on jobs, beyond the convoluted rationalizations of the "trickle-down" proponents, but we must assume that it will indeed affect some of those multi-million-dollar bonus jobs, while the automotive CEO's have offered to cut their own salaries to one dollar a year until they re-pay their two percent.
Now back to real jobs. If the Big Three go down, several hundred thousand of their hourly and salaried workforce will become unemployed, and our industrial Midwest will be devastated. But it gets worse--several hundred more thousands of jobs will be eliminated in their parts supplier chains, freight companies, tool and die shops, service and maintenance contractors, dealers, advertisers, etc. The loss of those jobs will affect the entire fabric of the economy which in turn provides goods and services to the then-unemployed and their families--and the cascade will continue down through our entire national economy in what economists call the "multiplier effect." The final impact of the multiplier effect across the nation could amount to perhaps a Ten Million Job Loss, and a devastating depression for years.
Would we let those 10 million jobless starve? Of course not. Let's say we would dole each of them the conservative unemployment compensation of $100 weekly. That alone would consume $15 billion in a mere 15 weeks, but our social conscience (assuming one is not Republican) would continue the disbursement as long as there was anything left in our treasury or until foreign interests refused us further financing--that is until the United States was nationally bankrupt. Except, that is, for the beneficiaries of the $700 Billions dole, who would no doubt still be cruising their yachts in Long Island Sound, their lucre sheltered somewhere offshore, whilst discussing fiscal responsibility.
In conclusion, it is high time the purported champions of the common man (read Democrats) shed their high dudgeon and mustered the integrity and political courage to do the right thing for the people who voted them into their jobs, and for the republic. That is, they need to stop impressing us with their newly found (?) conscience or consciousness, approve the auto bailout, be it 15, 35, 38 or whatever comparatively small number they kick about, and actually--for the first time since they betrayed us by gifting Bush with war powers in 2002--represent the best interests of the people of America.
(Postscript: After that, they might finally then muster the courage and curiosity--or at least regain consciousness--to take a peek into the plot for disbursing the second half of the $700 Wall Street swindle.)