Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Watching the Wall Street meltdown, I'm seeing the huge disconnect between classes. Being amongst the poor, I don't have to worry about my stock portfolio falling. Most of the folks I know live paycheck to paycheck, and invest in a night out when they can. We balance our books by paying our bills and spending what's left.
But the major investment banks don't have to follow such simple rules. They can simply inflate the value of their assets to create a false 'bottom line' and if reality intrudes they get a government bailout. At least, that's the way it usually works. After all, the government always has a few extra billion for the rich. Okay, it comes from the taxpayers (us) or an increase in the deficit (us), but it's not like it's real money. The country isn't bankrupt as long as it can borrow more (unlike regular people), and the first rule of Wall Street is "there are no rules." In the circles of high finance greed is good, lying is rewarded, and oversight (regulations) are removed by buying up a few congressmen (St. Sleazy McCain and crew).
Which is why they really wanted to privatize Social Security. All that money going to regular people when it could so easily be stolen for the much more deserving rich. Face it, Grandma won't spend her Social Security check on a congressman or deregulating Ponzi schemes.
It was all a fine system (for the rich) until someone started to notice that all those pieces of paper weren't worth what they claimed. In fact, most of them were beyond worthless. The 'assets' added up to nothing but a very large debt.
Now they're busy trying to figure out how to foist this debt off onto the regular people; the homeowners, the taxpayers, anybody who hasn't bought a congressman. And it's going to hurt a lot of us.
I'm fairly safe, being among the poorest of the poor. They can't get much from me because I haven't got it. I'm only semi-employed (or semi-unemployed), semi-homeless, and completely broke. If my bank failed, the FDIC would laugh at my account. I'm not going to get billions in a federal bailout. Hell, a thousand dollars looks huge to me (please feel free to use the "donate" button on the right if you can spare it, or any other amount) and my economy has been tanking for a long time.
The republican greedheads have had their way for a long time, but reality is starting to piss on their "trickle-down" theory of economics. We can't afford another four years of criminal insanity guiding our economic policy. The question becomes "how badly will people have to be hurt before they realize this?"

1 comment:

BadTux said...

My take on it: It will take complete and utter national disaster. As in, on the scale of 1930-1932, complete with food riots, mass homelessness, 40%+ unemployment, and rumblings of revolution from a desperate people with nothing left to lose.

At that point, I give it a 50-50 chance that, rather than embrace progressive solutions, the American public will then embrace fascism and annoint someone to be their dictator. We came damned close in the 1930's. Damned close. If FDR hadn't assassinated Huey Long and leashed Father Coughlin, there was a damn good chance that the U.S. would have gone down that road. But I don't see any FDR's in today's lame political scene, just a bunch of machine politicians and utter hacks...

50-50 chance. Not good. Best we can expect, though, I suppose. As for your notion that you have nothing to lose, maybe, maybe not. When economic activity grinds to a halt, you better have some skill that can be traded for food, or you'll have something to lose all right -- your life.