Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Integrity: Holding true to one's ideals

2008 The Republican Party Platform, under the heading Economy, sub-heading Rebuilding Homeownership states:

"We do not support government bailouts of private institutions. Government interference in the markets exacerbates problems in the marketplace and causes the free market to take longer to correct itself. We believe in the free market as the best tool to sustained prosperity and opportunity for all."

I guess it's a nice theory. Blind faith in the ability of markets to self-correct is what led to the Great Depression and the rush over the past several years to de-regulate financial markets. Once again, we're all Keynesians now. It is clear that due to unfathomable irresponsibility on the part of many at the top of leading financial institutions, that were poorly regulated, the free market needs the government's help.

I do not think that the Congress should just accept the plan presented, which carte blanche indemnifies Treasury, with no changes and little time to consider it. It seems like another naked executive power-grab by an administration that will use any situation to further consolidate power in the executive branch. I find it troubling that people, like Ben Bernanke, who smugly tries to be as Sphinx-like as his predecessor, Alan Greenspan, can speak so obliquely most of the time, but be so clear now- You must enact this plan as presented with no changes, or else . . ." Well, Mr. Chairman o' the Federal Reserve, the or else has already happened while you and many others kept reassuring us about the soundness of our economy. So, give our senators and representatives time to work this out.

A diaconal bow to David Gibson, specficially his post Tangled webs, in which you can read more about political responses to the meltdown.

Meanwhile, Fred posts about a debate of far more importance and, predictably, far less notoriety- reports on Albacete and Hitchens.

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