This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 26, 2008 6:29 AM. The previous post in this blog was Please don't do this to our country. The next post in this blog is Tellin' it like it is. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Whistling past the graveyard

Just as the Iraq War is a million miles away from many of us, so too the financial crisis. Yesterday the bank in which my kids and I have a fair amount of money failed. My paycheck is supposed to be deposited in there next week. There's no crowd outside the defunct bank -- another bank is buying it. And even if another bank didn't, there is still, at least for the moment, enough money in the federal deposit insurance fund to cover all of us depositors at that particular savings institution.

So it's just another Friday, at least on the surface.

Deep down, though, I'm ready to get clubbed by a baseball bat. This country has lived in an obscene fantasy world these last seven years, and in just a moment the soft, seductive lights of that illusion are going to go out. Some pretty harsh fluorescent lights are about to be turned on in their place.

Tax cuts during wartime -- yeah, that worked.

Comments (23)

BILL CLINTON: I think the responsibility the Democrats have may rest more in resisting any efforts by Republicans in the Congress or by me when I was President to put some standards and tighten up a little on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

"BILL CLINTON: I think the responsibility the Democrats have, may rest more in resisting any efforts by Republicans in the Congress, or by me when I was President; to put some standards and tighten up a little, on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac."

Bill O'Reilly said: "Walk away from these liars -- these right-wing liars."

[ via MediaMatters .ORG ] From the September 25 broadcast of Westwood One's The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly:

O'REILLY: And all of these ideologues, it gets me angry. I do talk radio and most of talk radio is conservative-dominated ideologues, Kool-Aid-drinking idiots -- idiots -- screaming at you, "This is socialism," this is this, this is that, "It's Clinton's fault." "It's Clinton's fault." "It's Clinton's fault"? Clinton hasn't been in office in eight years.

It's Bush's fault. It happened on Bush's watch. You know, Bush could've prevented this. He could've gone in easily and said, "Merrill Lynch is dealing in bad paper." He could have said that. "Merrill Lynch is dealing in bad paper." "Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac -- they're dealing in bad paper," so you, the investor, don't invest in those companies. ....

"they" win; 'we loose'
"They" get to sail off in their 200+ foot yachts, the bilges loaded up with gold bullion, and 'we' get stuck trying to live in a house, hoping to feed our kids something besides beans and rice and praying we stay healthy enough to provide some stability for our families in a broken society.
Welcome to the new third world order.

Ironic that the most vociferous resistance to this "bailout of the rich" is coming from republicans. Pelosi, Reid, Schumer, Dodd and the rest of the democratic fold were quite willing to bend over and take it. The democratic party is joke. They no longer know what they stand for. The apathy and banality of the democratic party played as much a role in this mess as the cynical randian malice of the republicans. You cannot have one without the other.

You can point your fingers at both parties and the financial institutions for who is at fault for this one. A few people did stand up and say their was a problem but no one stood there beating the drum in warning. That's the point O'Reilly was making and I fully agree with him.

An article from Reuters jumped out at me this morning. Here's the beginning:

"U.S. banks and money managers borrowed a record amount from the Federal Reserve in the latest week, nearly $188 billion a day on average, showing the central bank went to extremes to keep the banking system afloat amid the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression."

188 billion a day? Now granted this is not the same as the bailout, but still...that's more than 700 billion in 4 days.

By the way, anyone who thinks this isn't the Republicans fault is either on the talking points payroll - people assigned to flood radio stations and blogs with spin - or is simply delusional.

Maybe they share President Bush's messianic trait - if they say it's true, it becomes true.

And Jack, as I told the worried checker at Zupan's, it may be smart to be in a bank that fails early rather than later when things get really weird.

Thats absolute poppycock, Darrin. There were plenty of individuals beating the drum. Shiller, Schiff, Roubini, and even Krugman and Stiglitz come to mind.

The problem was that the public wanted their credit bubble and there was no way the the shills in the media were going to disabuse them of the notion that one can get money and chicks for free.

The average american is the dumbest citizen on this planet.

"Born and bred dopes"
Jas Jain

Oh come ON. To play like this is all Bush and your democrats were champions in all of this is too much BS. Even for an election year.

"And Jack, as I told the worried checker at Zupan's, it may be smart to be in a bank that fails early rather than later when things get really weird."

Actually its better to have your money somewhere where its not being devalued by inflation and currency imbalances. But most americans are clueless about money. They think it grows on trees -- thats its their "manifest destiny" to live beyond your means and not pay for it. The world owes you guys...right?

Darrin, O'Reilly has it wrong again. People have been warning of danger ahead for 3 or more years -- economists like Shiller, Roubini, and so on.

But that was on the upside and no one wanted to listen. As long as the stock market goes up and I can continue treating my house like a piggy bank....who cares?

People did not listen and some went as far as to make fun of those who were beating the drum. O'reilly's position is without merit.

Both parties are a JOKE -- the resistance is coming from a small handful of fiscal conservatives but they are not representative of the Republican party in general. The Republican party is just as rife with spendthrifts as the Democratic party.

We need a Fiscal Conservative/Social Liberal to run our country. But how could such a person get any traction in the current political system?

Jack, you're a smart guy. You mean to tell me you didn't see the writing on the wall weeks ago and pull your money out then? I pulled out of WaMu three weeks ago.

In the largest bank failure ever (measured by assets), there is a mark of redemption. The FDIC managed to help broker a deal for the sale of WaMu that managed to protect customers (accounts will function the same), high-value accounts (over the FDIC limit will be protected) and manage not to pay out (FDIC doesn't pay anything). If the FDIC can manage the largest bank failure without pumping in cash, maybe we should give THEM the money instead of Goldman-Sachs-Paulson.

WaMu was among many banks and public utilities that persisted (inappropriately) in sponsoring major events, public programs, Rose Festival floats, etc.

When, oh when, did banks cease being simply banks?

Good point Chris...today's happenings would seem to take the wind out of Paulson & Bernanke's arguments.

RW, unless you have more than what the FDIC covers, I don't see why you'd need to pull your money out of WaMu.

I pulled out of WaMu three weeks ago.

Where'd you go? My money's probably o.k. at Chase, at least for a while.

I don't see why you'd need to pull your money out of WaMu.

Because the US $ is going to crash.

Where'd you go? My money's probably o.k. at Chase, at least for a while.

Everbank is a good solution for noobs who do not want to deal with forex:

Mark Cuban of all people has a very interesting solution to the financial crisis here:

Well you know what guys? I bought t-bills, 40 of them and took my deiscount.

Are Everbank forex deposits covered by FDIC? Did you check?

T-bills are close to the point where you're paying them to hold your money for you. Factor in inflation, and there you are.

One fallout from the WaMu takeover is that the TPG Group - those "nice" folks that wanted to take over PGE - lost $7 Billion that they had invested in WaMu.

everbank accounts are protected by the fdic but anyone who actually thinks this is meaningful is naive. this nation is insolvent and, imo, it is only a matter of time before it reneges on its guarantees.

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