Thursday, September 25, 2008

Agree to the bailout, or else

Is this "economic crisis" the new 9-11 -- a scary tool to achieve concessions from the American people? Naomi Klein, author of The Shock Doctine, seems to think so.Listen to her on Democracy Now.
Klein says that "now is the time to resist Wall Street's shock doctrine."

"Be afraid, be very afraid," seemed to be President Bush's message as he advocated a $700 billion bailout plan. In a nationally broadcast address last night, he asserted that if the government doesn't purchase billions of worthless investments with taxpayer money, the entire economy might collapse. And just to be extra persuasive, he made it personal. If the bill is not passed, you could lose everything -- your house, your job, your retirement savings, access to credit.

"The market is not functioning properly. There has been a widespread loss of confidence, and major sectors of America's financial system are at risk of shutting down. ... Without immediate action by Congress, America could slip into a financial panic and a distressing scenario would unfold," the President said.

Seems to me the markets are functioning properly. The writing is on the wall. Fear and retrenchment are rational responses to what is unfolding. The pyramid scheme of worthless derivatives is crashing down and investors are leery. Sounds about right. Major Wall Street Institutions have vaporized and people are spooked. Also, sounds right. We are in the "distressing scenario."

Why is it that worshipers of the "free market" are now eager to engage in the largest ever exercise in corporate welfare?