Bloodbath on Wall Street

September 29, 2008
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Thereâ??s no time like an election to make politicians nervous about taking a stand on a controversial issue, and this afternoonâ??s House vote on the $700 billion bailout plan is no exception.

Many Republicans and some Democrats, leery about facing voters disgusted with Wall Street excesses, turned down the package â?? and the markets responded with a massive sell-off.

Whatâ??s your take? Are opponents doing the right thing? And to what extent do you believe their votes were driven by fear of an angry electorate or principled opposition to a plan they feel rewards people who took foolish risks?
  • Want to know who voted against stabilizing the financial markets today? Keep these names handy the next time they are up for reelection…Dan Burton, Mike Pence, Steve Buyer, Andre Carson, Baron Hill, and Pete Visclosky. Six out of nine Indiana US representatives voted no. Had the bill passed and gone to the Senate, Lugar and Bayh were ready to vote yes.

    Mike Pence screamed the loudest. He sent the following letter to his colleagues on Sunday after a deal was allegedly struck over the weekend:

    Dear Colleagues:

    Our nation has been confronted by a serious crisis in our financial markets. The President and this Congress were right to act with all deliberate speed in addressing this crisis.

    We now have a deal that promises to bring near-term stability to our financial turmoil, but at what price?

    Economic freedom means the freedom to succeed and the freedom to fail.

    The decision to give the federal government the ability to nationalize almost every bad mortgage in America interrupts this basic truth of our free market economy.

    Republicans improved this bill but it remains the largest corporate bailout in American history, forever changes the relationship between government and the financial sector, and passes the cost along to the American people. I cannot support it.

    Before you vote, ask yourself why you came here and vote with courage and integrity to those principles.

    If you came here because you believe in limited government and the freedom of the American marketplace, vote in accordance with those convictions.

    Duty is ours, outcomes belong to God.

    We have fought the good fight. Now we need to finish the race and make sure that posterity and the American people know there were conservatives who opposed the leviathan state in this dark hour.

    And if you do this I promise you, I will stand with you and, I believe with all my heart, the American people will stand with you as well.


    Will the American people stand by Mr. Pence when they go to their bank machine in a week or a month or in six months and can’t get any money out? Will they agree with him when they lose their job as part of mass unemployment sets in? Will they be supportive when their 401K value drops in half, can’t get a car loan or a home mortgage? Will they think Mike Pence and his buddies are heroes when depression is used to describe our current situation and we are all wishing it was only a recession? I doubt it.

    Maybe Mike Pence is shooting to have his name inscribed next to Herbert Hoover as Americans that did the most to harm the US economy?

    Isn’t it ironic that the Republicans, the party that championed deregulation and free market economy are the most responsible for where we are today? The lack of oversight is in their corner. Yet, they are the ones who are failing to do what needs to be done to bail out you and me. It is truly mind boggling.

    I disagree with Mr. Pence’s assertion that outcomes belong to God. The upcoming financial apocalypse belongs to Mike Pence and his followers.
  • It's not that I'm against a bailout, but I am against THIS bailout bill. $700 Billion? That's only a start as outlined by this legislation. It will eventually end up costing taxpayers far more than that because the truth is nobody knows how large this problem really is. The Treasury just pulled that number out of the air because they thought is was sufficiently large to scare everyone into quick action. The Street is just hoping for something to be done so stock prices will go back up and those at the top can get out with some cash.

    Our economy is screwed no matter what, so it's just a question of minimizing the damage.
  • Nothing like a media feeding frenzy to shock the public and the markets to create the buying opportunity of a lifetime.(See summer 2002)
  • So, the US government buys up the bad mortgages that threaten to destroy banks. Does that mean all mortgages are forgiven and everyone gets a free house? I don't think so. You still have to pay someone, maybe more slowly. The feds should be able to collect a good chunk of what's owed and offset the initial much of the cost of buying the mortgages.

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