As I was finishing this issue the Bush Administration’s “bail-out” package was being hotly debated in Congress. Due to time constraints I will only say for now that rewarding corporate executives whose greed, incompetence and total disregard for the rule of law led us down a path which almost caused the destruction of our economic system, makes no sense. Several years ago, a Republican-controlled Congress took away much of the regulatory authority that resulted in the financial institutions doing some highly questionable and really stupid things. According to Capitol insiders, while the projected cost was about $700 billion, the actual cost of the bailout could be as high as $1.3 trillion. There was little in the original version of the plan to protect the American taxpayers. Hopefully, that will have been changed if the bailout passes and is signed into law. There was a news report on the day we sent this issue to the printer that an agreement in principle had been reached.
The failed economic policies of the Bush Administration – combined with virtually no effective regulation of our financial markets – threaten to take us back to the “Hoover days.” Hopefully, if there was a bi-partisan agreement in Congress, they were able to craft a remedy that will save our nation’s economy without doing further irreparable damage to present and future taxpayers. Unfortunately, I don’t see how that can be avoided. My initial response was to say “no” to the bailout, but I am fairly certain something will have been passed by the time this issue is received. I just hope and pray it’s got as much taxpayer, homeowner, and small business protection as can be achieved.
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