Obama was for the bailouts, now he’s against them?
I just got to laugh at the stunning hypocrisy of the president. He is now supporting a bunch of disorganized people with no clear demands other than perhaps they are angry at the bank bailouts – (which is suspiciously like the Tea Party, but hey,) — when the man himself pushed through an $800 billion, and some few more billions, so many it’s hard to know exactly, bailout of the banks and investment houses. You can’t very well be for bailouts to the tune of a Trillion Bucks or more and be against Wall Street bailouts, can you? Especially as you are calling for another $500 billion in “stimulus” by bailing out banks and big corporations, can you?
At least the Republican establishment sort of knows that the Tea Party is out for their heads, for having been in league with the bank bailouts and all the pork barrel spending and cushy jobs for friends and relatives in government funded and supported companies that are abject failures. But the Democrats, and this rabble, are against something – the far too cozy relationship between government and big corporations, perhaps it could be called – while calling for an even cozier relationship. It’s mind boggling. For the “Evil Greedy” people who run the big financial companies, banks, stock brokerages and such, are just going to exercise their “Evil Greediness” in government office rather than private companies.
And I always marvel at the lack of logic on this matter. If you don’t like big business lobbying government, then don’t have government passing laws and rules and regulations that would require the big businesses to lobby for the favors they want or need. Every time the government passes new controls on businesses then it’s a requirement of the businesses to go seek favors from the government – for that’s the nature of the beast. It’s the government’s legislation – for if there was no such law as TARP, and TARP II and III and who knows how many already, or no Dodd-Frank financial “reform” (which is just a word for “more laws”) then the banks and investment houses would have not had to lobby the government – they would have simply sank or swum.
And what do I care if a big bank goes under? There’s always talk of apocalypse – of “financial panic” if a bank fails – and no such thing is possible until the government comes in to try to “fix” things with a law or a regulation. Supposedly, the Occupiers of Wall Street (oh, well, no, Zuccotti Park nearby,) are against propping up big companies – but the Unions down there protesting the propping were all happy with the bailout propping of General Motors. So which are they for? Or Against? Or are they just mush heads? I vote the latter.
I noted previously, that the Liberals were aghast when a previous Chairman of General Motors had said “what’s good for General Motors is good for America” – and now, after 20 years of decrying this as “greed” and “corporate control” – they now say “What is good for General Motors is good for America” and handed it Tens of Billions. How crazy, eh?
Just blocks away from Zuccotti Park there’s a 65 story tower called the Woolworth Building. It was built in 1915 with a $15,000,000 check from Frank Woolworth – the evil greedy man of his times, chastised like Walmart is today, for “putting small businesses out of business” and “not paying people enough” and all the usual mush – to Cass Gilbert, the architect. Frank wanted the tallest building in the world. And he got it. It was the tallest for a decade. And now, where is the Woolworth company? No where, that’s where. It doesn’t exist. It went out of business decades ago; after a slow lingering decline.
Typically, not only was it evil and greedy in its ascendency, it was heartless and cruel for closing stores and laying off people in its decline. Face, it Woolworth was never liked by the “thinkers” – but only by the people who shopped there, until they found something better. Macy’s never told Gimbel’s much, which is why Gimbel’s is out of business, and Macy’s is part of a larger entity called Federated Department Stores. And so now, big banks are called “Evil” and “Greedy” but no one worries about Manufacturers Hanover which was so good at the “Evil” and “Greed” thing that it is no more. Many big banks are gone, and nothing much ever happened. Everyone listened to financial genius from E.F. Hutton, that was their famous tag line, “when E.F. Hutton speaks, people listen,” – yes, well, then people got tired of listening and Hutton was shushed.
And Pan Am and Eastern Airlines, oh, evil greedy gobblers of airline market share – both flown off to the far distant memories of those who can recall. And Wannamaker – oh that family of Philadelphia were evil and greedy without bounds, it was said, and their huge store on Broadway at 8th Street in Manhattan was a threat to all that was holy and good on “Main Street” – only now the huge behemoth is filled with a 100 small companies instead of one big one. Further up Broadway was the “Ladies’ Mile” – big huge companies like McCory and Montgomery Ward and May’s – all the “evil and greedy” of their era, then they made error, and now are in the ether. All their big warehouse stores are filled with tiny companies now too. So much for that theory eh?
And what is true about the companies gone is that they did not get bailouts, but simply fell by their own inertia and someone else’s “evil greed” – for the “evil greed” of one company with newer and better ideas and methods and products always seem to put out of business the previous set of “evil greedy” people who couldn’t make it in the flexible economy. The “evil greedy” big corporations who pushed pagers, well, Steve Jobs was a bit more “greedy” and did come up with the iPhone, and now a pager not be found.
And now, no, now we’ll bailout companies – only, well, once you start that you can’t stop. For the minute you stop the bailouts then the companies will fall. For they have already fallen, drunk with their self-importance, they could not make it in a flexible economy – so now the government will prop them up, teetering giants, for stability, as everyone says – including now this president – big corporations are “evil” and “greedy” and must be brought down to size. Yes, well, let them do what they do, and they’ll all collapse.
Barely a corporation on earth ever lasts 100 years. A&P lasted for 150 years, it is said, yes, but first it was a huge company with a supermarket in every city and town and they were the “evil” and “greedy” of their times who put small businesses to the guillotine, it was said – and now A&P is down to a handful of funky stores in a dozen places and that’s about it. So much for that powerhouse of food control, eh?
The landscape is littered with old mills and factories, dirty places it was said, but somehow the failure of those companies cost America her manufacturing – except we make more now than ever, with less people per product, and less time per product – but more people in cleaner safer factories that are air conditioned, instead of brick mills powered by the river next to them. Capitalism is flux, the free market giveth and taketh, by that mighty ethereal force call the “invisible hand.”
Here’s how that works, for those who still can’t grasp this – a bar was opened a few months ago here in my town. I went to it once or twice. I did not like the music, I didn’t like the décor, and I didn’t like the prices of the drinks – so I never went back – and now the bar is closed. Yes, I put it out of business – by making myself invisible to the bar – and now, poof, I slapped it out of existence. And I couldn’t have been the only invisible hand, for all the other invisible people never patronized the place, meaning, well, meaning not enough revenues, hence, catastrophic business failure. Aw, too bad.
But if you rabble rouse for government control, assistance, bailouts and regulations of companies you will guarantee that those companies never fail – and yet, if you are protesting that companies have too much power – and you then let the government mollycoddle those companies, well, then you have given them even more power – the power of endless government involvement. If you don’t like big banks, then get the government out of the big bank business – and presto, big banks will fail. And the pieces will be picked up by smaller banks, who will perforce get bigger.
And what is this “greed”? Can anyone define it? No, it is only “wanting more than your share” – and that too can’t be defined. “Wanting more than is fair” – yes, but what is “fair”? That too can’t be defined. The entire complaint about “greed” is that some person somewhere else has “too much” you think – and now, to bring him down to size, you will be “greedy” and demand your share of what you think is yours – and that’s called coveting – and that’s just wrong. It’s just envy, and covetousness and all very greedy to demand someone else give to you what they have earned. And there’s no way around that. And it’s very easy to say someone is “greedy” for there’s no clear definition except by your own self-important declaration that you know what greed is. And that’s mush.
Still, the president is now on record as being both for and against the bank bailouts, which I find a bit of legerdemain and hypocrisy, and done for a far different reason – he wants government to control the banks even more – which means they’ll need to lobby more, and give him lots of campaign contributions lest he get ornery and pass a new “reform” meant to control even more, in our new era of royalty without the ermine. And the next president will almost certainly do the same, even if he’s Perry or Romney or Cain – or anyone – and we’ll face another one term failed presidency and the same problems we face today will continue – for it’s not the corporations that are the problem, they come and go – ’tis the government, which stays with us forever.
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