Monday, September 29, 2008

Whining from Wall Street and Congress annoying, but Pelosi's political stock falls the farthest

I've never heard as many crybabies as this afternoon from Wall Street and Washington.

All the pitiful financial analysts on CNBC looked and sounded like a bride left at the altar. What happened to the groom with his big bailout check?

Wall Street is whining because there are no more easy commissions for brokerage houses as people take their money out of mutual funds and put their funds in cash. Brokerage houses are used to making money off your hard-earned funds whether you make money or not.

Now these folks in pinstripes and dress suits won't be able to go out to lunch as often, or dinner. They may have to live from paycheck to paycheck, just like people on Main Street. At least that's the assessment of my favorite checkout person at the local Publix. We talked about all the crying on Wall Street. And there was no sympathetic tone in our voices.

Economists now predict a deep recession since the bailout was not approved. Folks, we were headed to a deep recession anyway. You can't cheat economic cycles. This nation has been living high off the hog for a quarter century. Debt has risen from $1.1 trillion to $4.4 trillion. A day of reckoning was going to come. And it is now. That's the assessment of author Kevin Phillips, in a bravado analysis of this mess last week on Bill Moyers' PBS show.

Congressional leaders will try and push a new bailout plan or the same one on Thursday. They believe the big drop in the stock market proves their point. It doesn't. The Dow was headed down below 10,000 anyway.

Remember the biggest political mistake in modern times when President Gerald Ford said that Poland was free during a 1976 presidential debate? House Speaker Nancy Pelosi today outdid him. In the closing remarks of the three hours of debate on the bailout, she blamed the nation's financial woes on right-wing ideology and eight years of the Bush presidency.

She was wrong in her assessment, generally and historically. Both parties and ideologies are to blame, particularly the Clinton administration. And when a politician as a supposed leader is trying to sell a bipartisan plan, he or she shouldn't go running down the other side moments before a vote. Neither should he or she bring legislation up for a vote when you don't have the votes. Pelosi made a big fool out of herself.

Pelosi's performance bodes ill for Sen. Barack Obama and his legislative agenda if he gets elected president. Almost 100 Democrats voted against her plan and leadership.

Congressional members on the far left did not vote for the package because -- among other things -- it incredibly put the secretary of the treasury beyond judicial oversight or correction in some of his decision with $700 billion in taxpayer money. My goodness, Congress was about to crown a king in America. On the far right, they objected to spending without any guarantee that the plan would work. Who will bail out America with $11.3 trillion in debt?

The American people won in today's House vote. And if they have to pay for it on Main Street, they'll suck it up as they always have -- and have been for the past several years.

This time, at least, there will be some Wall Street fatcats sharing the pain. Rep. Jim Cooper was the only Tennessee rep to vote for the bailout. Be sure to e-mail or call Cooper and your House member and tell them to vote against the next bailout plan.

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