Cynical Synapse

Sat, 03 Jan 2009

Not Bailing Fast Enough?

Filed under: Bailout, Business, Economy, Life, Michigan, Politics, Take action — cynicalsynapse @ 10:42 pm

A quarter ago, our representatives in Congress passed a $700 billion bailout package, with an added $100 billion in pork, in no more than 5 business days. Those same Senators refused to even consider bridge loans for the US auto industry even though the money involved only about 9.4% of the Wall Street bailout.

The Wall Street bailout is supposed to be a rescue plan but it seems Treasury Secretary Paulson doesn’t really have a plan. Never mind he was CEO of failed Goldman Sachs before his current gig.

So, the ship is still sinking because someone’s not bailing fast enough. Does anyone really wonder why? According to MSN’s 10 Worst Bailout Boondogles, beneficiaries of taxpayer rescue money have little or no fiscal responsibility. The MSN article’s extravagance adds up to at least $8.6 billion, spent on naming rights, bonuses, and other perks. Seems the financial elites never suffer.

Do any of these financial companies have detailed plans to return to solvency like the Senate demanded from the US automakers? How about Citigroup, which seems to need more and more taxpayer money, despite being awarded the contract for both US government fuel cards and official travel cards? Which such seemingly lucrative business, what justification does Citigroup have for sticking its oversized snout into the public troughs?

Maybe, if the banks were to loan money like the original bailout plan expected, the US auto industry wouldn’t be in the predicament it’s in now. And, even though Alabama Senator Shelby opposed the Wall Street bailout, he was one of the most vocal opponents to a US automaker bridge loan. This seems rather dis-ingenuous, considering the significance of the “transplant” auto industry in Sen. Shelby’s home state.

Besides the usual complaining, two tangible reactions come to mind. First, we can boycott Alabama products. While not aimed at the people of Alabama, such action is intended to hit Sen. Shelby’s state in the pocket book. Maybe then he’ll get it. A more constructive approach, though, is to Say Yes! to Michigan by buying local goods. Visit Buy Michigan Now! to register or find Michigan products.

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