September 21st, 2008


The root of all evil

Here's what I think about the whole financial crisis:

1. Phil Gramm and John McCain (and my congressman Jim Leach) need to be strapped into a ball kicking machine and have their balls kicked from now untl sometime next year. Anyone with any sense knew that their dogmatic adherence to the one true religion of deregulation was going to end up badly.

2. Foreclosing on people for not being able to pay their mortgages, instead of trying to find solutions to keep them in their homes has been a disaster. Banks would have come out ahead if they would renegotiate loans, or even just let people continue to live in their homes, and pay what they can afford. Once you foreclose, if you can't turn over the property immediately, it ends up vacant, and in some parts of the country, people come in late and night and strip the houses of their wiring and anything else saleable as salvage. Pretty soon the house is worth nothing.

Of course, your local bank sells your mortgage as soon as you close on it, so the person who owns your debt is thousands of miles away and couldn't care less what happens to you. So even if they could avoid an even greater loss, they wouldn't because they figure you're the sucker for getting a loan you can't afford.

3. While it's probably correct that bailing out the financial institutions to avoid a systemic collapse of the economy, it pisses me off that the people who run those institutions will just walk away with millions of dollars. In a just world, they'd be marched down the street in their underwear while a crowd jeered, like Nelson on the Simpsons.

As usual the rich people who cause the problems in our country are the last to pay for their crimes. Punch a cop and you may never get out of jail. Commit a trillion dollar mistake, and retire to your own private island.