Consul Bernanke and Consul Paulson are seething, like Julius Caesar in the last days of the Republic, having to make nice to a bunch of old Senators who couldn't spear a Gaul. How tedious. The Banks (peace be upon their holy name) need a payday loan — what's $700 billion to trifle over? Probably just a smidgen above Ted Kennedy's career bar bill.
Should our (laughably called) representatives in Congress not jump to have the money siphoned out of our kidneys, they assure us, the temple will come crashing down.
Ignore for the moment that there isn't the slightest guarantee this new elixir will cure what ails us. Consider the benefits of stopping this juggernaut and letting fear, confusion, and uncertainty build up. Because those are the very things that might — just might — lead to the kind of systemic and value changes that will actually set us right.
We are told that the banking system needs this transfusion of public funds (i.e., yet another loan from foreign governments and investors, another debit for U.S. taxpayers, and a further downgrade of the U.S. Treasury's credit rating from ZZ to –ZZZ) because only that will end the "credit crunch." Credit is not a dirty word, and has been around for millennia, but the abuse of credit brought us to this wretched pass. What if we let credit dry up for a year or two? Suppose everyone, from corporations to individuals, had to develop some survival skills and mental habits that would enable them to live without borrowing?
Yes, there would be pain, and some of it would be felt by people who had nothing to do with creating the mess we're in. But I don't believe there would be mass starvation or homelessness; we are too creative, and too caring, a people to allow that. And it would not be long before new institutions, independent of the present financial establishment racketeers, would start to supply the need for operating capital. If the skyscraper-headquarters banks go under, good riddance. Smart, creative entrepreneurial institutions (which our business leaders always assure us in after-dinner speeches are the lifeblood of capitalism) will replace them.
Beyond that: a period of fear and trembling would be a boon to our national soul. It's possible to survive a stretch of poverty — I can testify, and so can many others. There'd be nothing like a limited period in which most of our population struggled to make ends meet for getting young heads out from inside their iPods and away from staring at computer games all the live-long day. It could cure one or two generations of the idea that owning more and bigger stuff is the essence of felicity. Prosperity, and even being rich, can be a good thing — until it starts being accepted as a symbol of a person's worth and a "right" that justifies any kind of monkeyshines like packaging reeking loans and selling them as securities to some sucker.
Among that ever-shrinking demographic that hasn't been lobotomized by popular culture, a time of troubles might force them to consider the causes of our present Angst. For instance, one cause among others being that our government, through its now ingrained reflexes of political correctness and social engineering, demanded that mortgage institutions make loans available to customers who obviously couldn't repay them, provided said customers were of the proper skin hue or non-American origin.
As Ann Coulter writes, "Now, at a cost of hundreds of billions of dollars, middle-class taxpayers are going to be forced to bail out the Democrats' two most important constituent groups: rich Wall Street bankers and welfare recipients." (As usual, Ann combines sharp insight with sycophancy to the Republican Party, almost all of whom were collaborators in the madness.)
Perhaps some of those pondering cause and effect might even study history, and consider how what was intended as a limited federal government has become engorged and empowered to the point where it can tell banks who to loan money to and who companies must hire, control the money supply (and if it chooses, inflate the currency), enforce massive race replacement of the population, send armies to fight and die without a declaration of war, and nullify any legislation that doesn't fit with the political ideology of its black-robed judicial archons. And send its Treasury secretary and Fed chairman to the Capitoline Hill to demand $700 billion in protection money, or else.