Friday, September 26, 2008

Taxpayers Loan Financiers -- Update

As I watch what Congress is doing or not doing regarding this rescue plan some of what I wrote before the first vote was ever taken raises even more questions in my mind such as some of the add ons tacked on to this plan. We seem to have a bunch of Neros in Congress fiddling while Rome burns.

Most importantly, a critical vote is scheduled later today, and I, for one, continue to believe this rescue plan needs to be passed in the House. I'm appalled it wasn't passed on the first vote. We should get the names of all those who voted against passage and make a concerted effort to see this is their last term in office.

Fri., 10/03/08 12:13 A.M.

700 Billion Dollar Bailout Loan -- Rescue Plan

(Just added note: with this post Blogger has repeatedly not allowed me to publish which they describe as some sort of HTML code problem. Since I don't even type in any such code nor do I have any links on this post, I don't know what the problem is. If this post publishes it will be a minor miracle as I've been up all night with this, a feat I do not intend to repeat in the future just to publish to my blog.)

A mind-boggling series of political and financial events affecting our country as well as the world have transpired in these United States in the weeks since my last post. Regrettably, ongoing computer Internet connectivity problems I've noted earlier have hampered the ease and frequency of my blogging activity during this time period and continue to do so.

Also, on a personal level an active working younger colleague and friend startlingly learned within this same month-or-less time period she had a serious medical problem. Symptoms she had periodically experienced since the first of the year had repeatedly been undiagnosed. Finally, when the diagnosis was made, but only after frustratingly (to put it mildly,) extenuating circumstances, she was presented with few life choices. At best she could begin treatments maybe extending her life for an unknown short duration, or forego that medical intervention. Ultimately she chose hospice palliative care, but then hastened her own demise by voluntarily restricting food and liquid intake. All of us who cared about her could not quite believe the suddenness of her medical condition, or accept the reality that she left this world eight days later after making that decision and returning home.

During this time I've been able to stay fairly abreast of Presidential campaign activities using the whole media approach by availing myself of print, broadcast and Internet sources as I was able. My stated opinion beginning with my writing here about the Primary election campaign has been that I believe the candidates should restrict their discussion, speeches and debates to their stance on issues such as the economy, social security, health care, foreign affairs and the Iraq/Afghanistan war, though this is not a conclusive or hierarchal list.

I have been aware during this time of some political party introductions of what I consider to be extraneous matters. I believe they should be excluded as major campaign topics. Such topics are often the subject of negative campaign advertisements, and info news exploitation. These include distracting moral issues that should not be election political fodder to be used for fomenting division among voters, nor should they be government dictated legislative mandates.

I strongly believe introduction of emotionally loaded moral issues serve to be distracting. I think such actions are intentionally done to not only seduce a specific voter block group but to foment division within the country – the divide and conquer strategy. Such moral issues are not appropriately the subject of legislation or government dictates and yet some keep trying to make them so. In addition to these issues serving as a tactic to distract voters as was deliberately done in the previous two elections, they prove to be destructive to a forthright, honest, open election process and our democracy. I deliberately do not name these destructive issues here less the mere act of doing so promotes them more and distracts from the point of these thoughts.

Before these weeks we began to experience a deep rumble within the depths of our countries banking system. We became fearful realizing all was not well when a major Federal Reserve takeover of a bank occurred. Some other banks began seeking stronger financial partners. Many banks are still considered potential candidates to become insolvent, thus requiring assistance. We have yet to experience the full impact of this banking and thrift situation. Housing prices decline and decreasing loan availability to purchase a house continues to indicate a weakening market, also.

Simmering much like a volcano's molten lava deep within the much larger U.S. and financial world has been a declaration severe financial difficulties exist that threaten to destabilize International economies everywhere. Suddenly this volcano has exploded with the searing heat of overwhelming debt signaling the virtual collapse of major Wall Street financial firms. Their steaming rocks rain down on frightened investors large and small crushing stock values, financial houses, threatening tidal wave effects within our own nation and around the world.

Our government financial authorities have quickly come to our rescue devising a plan to avert the potential financial disaster but with one caveat. The plan must be adopted immediately, or financially we will all be sucked into a black moneyless hole. This admonition familiarly panders fear as a means to gain our immediate acquiescence to accepting this plan.

Our distress and anxiety levels over this matter are still very high as the days have passed. Still we know the plan has come from an administration known for deliberately, repeatedly lying, while nakedly stealing power and control for the executive branch, upsetting the governing balance our constitution intended to exist between the three branches – Executive, Legislative, Judicial. Why do I mistrust this latest threatening fear tactic?

As I write this, meetings have been in place with efforts to reach an agreement on exactly how this bailout loan for the financial sector will be written. That financial world has long been resistant to the thought they needed regulation and believe they should not be under any sort of meaningful enforceable government control. This same view has long been highly touted by the current administration and Republican Party. The current candidate of that political party seems now to realize financial regulation and enforcement might be needed.

But now their desperate presidential candidate has acted in such an impulsive way as to try and capitalize and politicize this serious financial issue by injecting himself into the process, no doubt to somehow try to somehow take credit for any final plan. Will his President be complicit in trying to facilitate this impression to aid in his election?

I am much more impressed with the thoughtful measured approach of the Democratic Party candidate. I also believe these two candidates should concentrate on debating each other on this and other issues in the remaining five campaign weeks. They'll each have their opportunity to vote on the final agreed upon plan when it comes before the Senate.

Days have passed since that first foreboding warning we must accept the plan first presented within that same day or the next. I don't presume to be a financial expert. Like so many I must depend on minds wiser than mine on this complex financial matter and yet there do seem to be common sense elements about the situation. I hope they keep my best interests in mind and do not squander my tax dollars on the undeserving. I can't avoid thinking that the financial entities wanting my tax money can likely make their admonitions become self-fulfilling prophecies. Would they be so vindictive and greedy for the almighty dollar, they would be willing to sell out our nation, despite what might be in the best interests of our country?

I am pleased some Congresspersons recognize they must stand firm and demand a few basic guarantees the loan plan adopted is not a bailout of these financial entities and individuals who have contributed so much to creating this financial fiasco:

  • I don't think it's too much to ask that if I as a taxpayer provide my share of the 700 billion dollars bailout that I should expect to receive financial benefits paid in dollars against this loan as reimbursement for the use of my tax dollars. I think an interest rate similar to what these financiers have charged Main Street American customers such as myself all these years on loans, stock purchases, credit cards, bank fees, etc., would be appropriate.
  • I want strict requirements and supervision over the equitable distribution of these loan funds both now and if additional future loan funds are extended.
  • I want to see these companies roll back mortgage interest rates and take other specific measures designed to help Main Street Americans avoid foreclosure. The millionaires and billionaires with equally expensive homes do not qualify for this assistance. They likely have plenty of other funds at their disposal, not to mention all the tax rate benefits they've received in recent years the rest of us have not.
  • I want to see executives of all the companies who borrow my tax dollars have cap limitations on the monies they receive in salary. Certainly bonuses are not warranted.
  • One man alone should not be given the decision-making power of declaring who does and doesn't receive any of this money or even how much. I want language in the loan agreement preventing this blatant stealing of power however well intended.
  • I want regulations required and enforced with more than just a statement "oversight" is being provided. I want limitations put in place on how these financial institutions function now and in future years. An overseeing committee convened after the fact of actions taken is not adequate insurance any of these companies will conduct business in an ethical or morally honest manner in the future, given their past history.
These items alone are the minimum provisions to which those who want to use my tax monies should have to agree before receiving even one of my hard-earned dollars, or a single one of my pennies either, for that matter.


  1. You write so clearly and concisely! I can always count on you to help me see the best/worst in a situation of a political/governmental nature.

    "to foment division within the country – the divide and conquer strategy." Exactly! and it is done by both sides.

    I was appalled at McCain wanting to delay the debate and wonder what the real reason behind that was. I just heard that he is on his way to Mississippi. Perhaps his circle convinced him that not to show up would be suicide, no matter what he cites as the reason.

  2. It is all too much, Joarad...Just too damn much! All the posturing and politics inserted by certain people...I.E' McCain, is disgusting!

    I agree with you about whaty needs to be in that bailout, but will those things be in there? I have very little faith, I'm afraid.

    AS to your Blogger Problems....Blogger has been imopossible lately and now that MERCURY is going backward---Well, it may get even worse!
    Much good luck to you, my dear.....

    That was really terible about your friend. I do understand her decision, but for it all to happen so quickly has to be teribly shocking and terribly sad for all those who loved and cared for her.
    My sincere condolances, my dear.

  3. McCain's actions through this whole thing have been disgusting...and he's cerainly no one I trust to be my president...and never has been. I agree with what you say. I think he is hoping to capitalize on this whole fiasco to bolster his election for the Presidency. If that isn't telling....and pathetic...I don't know what is.

    Another thing that really, really bothered me watching the debate last night...and this may be very minor, but not to me....Not ONCE did John McCain look Barack Obama in the eye last night. Not once did he really even look his way. The man just couldn't even engage himself. As hard as Obama tried to talk with him on several occasions, McCain never looked his way. That told me quite a lot....and I don't like what I saw. He was like a stubborn, brooding little boy who refused to play nice. And we expect this man to talk to foreign diplomats on our behalf as our chief executive? What a joke. I can't have been the only one to have noticed this.

  4. Congratulations on being able to resume blogging. It is a pleasure reading your thoughtful observations.

  5. I'm so sorry about your friend, Joared. That must have been really hard for you, amidst all the economic and election turmoil.
    I agree with all your conditions to the bailout except I'd add one: investigate who was responsible and hold them accountable, either by jail time or at least fines. I guess this is the only point I agree with McCain on.

  6. Apparently I made a false assumption about your computer being okay for now when I replied on my blog. I hope you get the problem fixed once and for all. (Joke of the year. Are PC's ever fixed permanently?)

    I, too, am saddened by the death of your friend. I do agree with her decision, though. I have seen too many live a painful existence trying to live a few more months.

    I envy your writing ability and am always pleased to read your take. This post was excellent.

  7. I was sorry to learn of your friends death.

    When I was a youngster I thought that the teachers knew all the answers and then later in life I thought that doctors knew all the answers.

    It just doesn't work that way. They just don't know everything and make mistakes.

    I think your friend made the right decision, didn't extend her suffering.

    Sorry for your lose.

  8. An exceptionally incisive post, joared. It's a relief to know there are thoughtful, articulate writers out there like you. Thank you so much.

    So sorry to hear about your friend. Choice means so much more than deciding to bear a child or not. It means leaving this world in dignity, in your own way, at the time you wish, if at all possible. A sad story, with a thoughtful end.

  9. Well for now at least the House voted no. Irritating to me that it's democrats this time who seem unable to see the risks for the nation. I just hope they come up with something with oversight, blocking of CEOs being rewarded for it, and a way to pay for it-- novel thought

  10. You have several issues here you've raised. First for blogger-- well, I'm happy with Typepad so can't releate there.

    The other issues are huge and with 2/3 of Americans having stocks as part of their retirement investments, this is huge. It is just mindbogglikng trying to understand all of this.

    So sorry about your friend.

  11. Amen re: the bailout -- you've said it well.

    My prayers are with you in your loss of your friend!

    Go Buckeye!!!

  12. Death is a strange but necessary companion to Life, or so I have been taught. Sometimes I wished it weren't so.

    Still, it's hard to let go of people we love. Not fair, ever.

    Good grip on the big economy picture, Joared.

  13. Sorry to hear of your friend's passing. No doubt your care helped in that most difficult time.

    I agree that the moral issues that you avoided stating(You didn't have to identify we know what they are) are used to distract us from the real issues. Indeed our democracy suffers because of this tactic used by both major parties.

    There are common ground for the moral issues that many people recognize but those who have a vested interest in keeping the status quo maintain the conflict.