Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Stop the Bailouts!

Yes, it is true, the economy is not in good shape. However, I am appalled and disgusted by the public's apathy toward the piss poor government solution of bailing out and buying up the private sector. The American public seems to have given the democrat-controlled congress and President Obama a blank check. Well, not entirely blank. The check looks to be to the tune of one trillion dollars. A trillion dollars! That's not petty cash. That is $300 billion more than the $700 billion that was already pumped into the market under TARP, and puts us down a path of spiraling monetary value, and endless debt.
(Government solution)
We are entering an age pervaded by a horribly defeatist philosophy of bailouts. And, what bothers me more than anything else is that the market now looks to Washington for help, instead of innovating and reinventing. But this was Washington's plan all along. It has fostered a cycle of dependency for years. On one hand it promises government backing for the likes of Freddie and Fannie, encouraging predatory lending, and then turns around and reprimands those same companies for practices it encouraged. How can we expect a problem that was in large part instigated and then exacerbated by the government to be solved by the government? If we continue to allow congress, the treasury, and Obama to buy up toxic assets and attempt to recapitalize the market, all we are doing is pumping the market with more instability. We are allowing the government to reward failures and cover its own backside when it has already failed royally.

There should be more outrage. I understand many are hurting, many are out of a job, but that is no reason to allow the government to spend, spend, spend. The effects are disastrous. The best one can hope for with such a strategy is a temporary rebound or a slight boost in morale, but the long term effects are irremediable. In no uncertain terms, what I am saying is the long term costs far outweigh the supposed short term benefits. Here is what all of this spending means:

1. The federal government, already submerged in massive debt, will go deeper into the abyss than ever. They are printing money with nothing but good will to back it. The dollar's value will plummet in the next months and years because of all the bailouts.

2. The federal government, despite its almost limitless debt, will position itself to control a huge part of the private market. It will be the biggest government expansion since the New Deal. It will create a new toxic asset bank, and numerous other bureaucratic arms that will supposedly maintain transparency and accountability but in reality will only further their own interests and limit investment opportunities, and market flexibility.

3. With government's part ownership of certain companies (namely the now state-controlled banks), and its demand for high prices for its involvement and money (taking preferred shares, and forcing companies to spend money the way that it deems most appropriate), investors will not help re-capitalize the banking industry and the financial sector. The government will have taken all the attractive parts of investment. Without private interest and investment, these state-controlled entities will stagnate or decline, and will end up needing even more bailouts to stay functioning.
4. The burden of all these bailouts does not fall on some mystical government entity that has endless supplies of cash. It falls on the taxpayer. The cost of this crisis from TARP to the trillions in infusions by the FED, to the latest Obama-Pelosi stimulus has reached stratospheric proportions. When all is said and done the government may well have spend upwards of 6 trillion dollars. That is nearly half the US GDP. And it also means that taxpayer will be saddled with these massive financial commitments for years to come.

5. If it were not bad enough that our dollar will be worth next to nothing, we will be digging ourselves deeper into debt, and the government will in large part be taking over the private sector and no new investment will be coming our way, the stimulus package proposed will throw money at terribly wasteful items. Some notorious examples are the mob museum in Las Vegas and Pelosi's birth control stimulus. Those are only the more notable worthless projects. Others involve vineyards and train rides and amusement parks in Alabama. 

I implore you. I exhort you. Stand up against this wasteful stimulus. It will not bring us back. The New Deal didn't work, and neither will this. The only thing all this spending accomplishes is building an ever-growing, less competent Leviathan. The government will tighten its stranglehold on the private sector, and its centralizing power will eventually consume every aspect of our lives (You might think that I'm exaggerating, but I'm not). This is the soft despotism that Tocqueville warned about. Call your congressmen and senators. Tell them to stop the bailouts. Tell them to come up with real solutions. Perhaps instead of bailing out and buying up, we could compromise. Half of that trillion in tax cuts, and half in bailouts. Let's see which strategy works better and gets the economy moving. 

Here the numbers for all of the US Senators:

Jeff Sessions (R) - 202-224-4124
Richard Shelby (R) - 202-224-5744

ALASKA (202-224-6665)
Lisa Murkowski (R)
Ted Stevens (R) - 202-224-3004

John McCain (R) - 202-224-2235
Jon Kyl (R) - 202-224-4521

Blanche Lincoln (D) - 202-224-4843
Mark Pryor (D) - 202-224-2353

Barbara Boxer (D) - 202-224-3553
Dianne Feinstein (D) - 202-224-2841

Wayne Allard (R) - 202-224-5941
Ken Salazar (D) - 202-224-5852

Joseph Lieberman (I) - 202-224-4041
Christopher Dodd (D) - 202-224-2823

Joseph Biden (D) - 202-224-4041*
Thomas Carper (D) - 202-224-2441

Mel Martinez (R) - 202-224-3041
Bill Nelson (D) - 202-224-5274

Saxby Chambliss (R) - 202-224-3521
Johnny Isakson (R) - 202-224-3643

Daniel Akaka (D) - 202-224-6361
Daniel Inouye (D) - 202-224-3934

Larry Craig (R) - 202-224-2752
Michael Crapo (R) - 202-224-6142

Richard Durbin (D) - 202-224-2152
Roland Burris

Evan Bayh (D) - 202-224-5623
Richard Lugar (R) - 202-224-4814

Charles Grassley (R) - 202-224-3744
Tom Harkin (D) - 202-224-3254

Sam Brownback (R) - 202-224-6521
Pat Roberts (R) - 202-224-4774

Jim Bunning (R) - 202-224-4343
Mitch McConnell (R) - 202-224-2541

Mary Landrieu (D) - 202-224-5824
David Vitter (R) - 202-224-4623

Susan Collins (R) - 202-224-2523
Olympia Snowe (R) - 202-224-5344

Benjamin Cardin (D) - 202-224-4524
Barbara Mikulski (D) - 202-224-4654

Edward Kennedy (D) - 202-224-4543
John Kerry (D) - 202-224-2742

Carl Levin (D) - 202-224-6221
Debbie Stabenow (D) - 202-224-4822

Norm Coleman (R) - 202-224-5641*
Amy Klobuchar (D) - 202-224-3244

Thad Cochran (R) - 202-224-5054
Roger Wicker (R) - 202-224-6253

Kit Bond (R) - 202-224-5721
Claire McCaskill (D) - 202-224-6154

Max Baucus (D) - 202-224-2651
Jon Tester (D) - 202-224-2644

Chuck Hagel (R) - 202-224-4224
Ben Nelson (D) - 202-224-6551

Harry Reid (D) - 202-224-3542
John Ensign (R) - 202-224-6244

Judd Gregg (R) - 202-224-3324
John Sununu (R) -202-224-2841*

Robert Menendez (D) - 202-224-4744
Frank Lautenberg (D) - 202-224-3224

Jeff Bingaman (D) - 202-224-5521
Pete Domenici (R) - 202-224-6621

Kirsten Gillibrand (D)
Charles Schumer (D) - 202-224-6542

Richard Burr (R) - 202-224-3154
Elizabeth Dole (R) - 202-224-6342*

Kent Conrad (D) - 202-224-2043
Byron Dorgan (D) - 202-224-2551

Sherrod Brown (D) - 202-224-2315
George Voinovich (R) - 202-224-3353

Tom Coburn (R) - 202-224-5754
James Inhofe (R) - 202-224-4721

Ron Wyden (D) - 202-224-5244
Gordon Smith (R) - 202-224-3753

Robert Casey (D) - 202-224-6324
Arlen Specter (R) - 202-224-4254

Jack Reed (D) - 202-224-4642
Sheldon Whitehouse (D) - 202-224-2921

James DeMint (R) - 202-224-6121
Lindsey Graham (R) - 202-224-5972

Tim Johnson (D) - 202-224-5842
John Thune (R) - 202-224-2321

Lamar Alexander (R) - 202-224-4944
Bob Corker (R) - 202-224-3344

John Cornyn (R) - 202-224-2934
Kay Hutchison (R) - 202-224-5922

Robert Bennett (R) - 202-224-5444
Orrin Hatch (R) - 202-224-5251

Frank Lautenberg (D) - 856-338-8922
Bernie Sanders (I) - 802-862-0697

John Warner (R) - 202-224-2023
James Webb (D) - 202-224-4024

Maria Cantwell (D) - 202-224-3441
Patty Murray (D) - 202-224-2621

Robert Byrd (D) - 202-224-3954
John Rockefeller (D) - 202-224-6472

Rusell Feingold (D) - 202-224-5323
Herb Kohl (D) - 202-224-5653

John Barrasso (R) - 202-224-6441
Michael Enzi (R) - 202-224-3424

*Some of these Senators are no longer in office.