Saturday, November 22, 2008
It's really nuts-making.
The Lame Duck Congress met and heard from the Big Three Automakers regarding a $25 billion bridge loan to tide them over until some of their restructuring and adaptations to the New Economy can be made. The usual huffery and puffery transpired, and much hoo-hah about corporate jets and what not, but eventually the real issue became clear: American car makers are in a bind; the market for new (big) cars has collapsed and it is not going to revive soon, especially not if the other parts of the economy don't improve. So. The car companies say they need a loan for now in order to stay in business while they restructure for current conditions, making sure their suppliers are paid, their workers are employed, their retirees are taken care of.
It makes a lot more sense on its face than the Paulson Extortion Scheme the Congress was Johnny-on-the-Spot improving and approving just a couple of months ago.
But Congress could not bring themselves to approve the Big Three automakers' request for loans and loan guarantees. They cannot bring themselves to approve a moritorium on home foreclosures and the restructuring of mortgages to keep people in their homes. They cannot bring themselves to approve anything that would actually keep ordinary people working and in their homes.
The only thing they can do is hand over trillions of dollars to CEOs and Smart Guys -- the very Wizards who brought on the financial collapse -- on demand and under orders.
They cannot do anything for people. Oh. Sorry. They did extend unemployment benefits for a few weeks.
The foreclosure crisis that is at the bottom of the economic collapse has been going on for two years or more, and Congress has dithered about it the whole time. Done nothing. They have been told by some of the Smart Guys who were extorting them that they better not do anything about the mortgage crisis, for it would be "unfortunate" to interfere in the market that way. "Let it sort itself out."
Yet the longer this drags on, the worse things become. There is now real panic abroad in the land because the economy is not recovering and all the trillions paid in extortion to the financial sector has done nothing to bring relief. In some ways, the extortion payments have made things worse.
Congress approved those payments -- essentially giving a blank check to the Treasury Secretary to do his will -- and the American People were ripped off in the biggest and most obvious heist in world history.
But comes an opportunity to actually do something positive for the American People, the answer is "No."
Congress is completely useless for the purpose of representing the interests of the American People. All they can do is take orders from the White House and serve their corporatist/imperialist masters.
This government needs a re-boot.