October 9, 2008

Who wouldn't want to own a bank

An unidentified man appearing at a Palin-McCain event in Waukesha, WI appears to have the current Republican administration's number.

"I'm mad, I'm really mad," he shouted at John McCain. "It's the socialists takin' over our country."

While the man may have thought he was referring to Barack Obama, he could just as well have been talking about President George W. Bush. A pair of Bloomberg financial reporters compare and contrast:
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown opted to spend $87 billion to partly nationalize at least eight British banks.

Yesterday, U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who crafted a more complicated $700 billion plan to buy financial firms' bad debts, signaled he may follow and invest directly in banks.

Brown, who spent years shedding Labour Party policies that called for nationalizing the "commanding heights" of the economy, won plaudits from bankers and even rival lawmakers for the rescue plan.

Paulson doesn't rule out more direct measures to help banks once he sets up a new office to run the rescue and hires fund firms to help manage the assets.

"It is the policy of the federal government to use all resources at its disposal to make our financial system stronger," Paulson said yesterday in Washington. "We will use all of the tools we've been given to maximum effectiveness, including strengthening the capitalization of financial institutions of every size."

Brown described his move as one others will want to follow. "We have led the world today," he said.

Glenn Hubbard, a former chairman of the U.S. Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush and now dean of Columbia Business School in New York, agrees.
In other Obama news, General David Petraeus expressed positive support for the U.S. engaging in diplomatic talks with the Taliban.

Members of the Taliban, you may recall, are not only enemies of America, they're the enemies of civilization as we know it. And that's not much of an exaggeration, if it's an exaggeration at all.

My fellow prisoners, will John McCain now mock General Petraeus's foreign policy views, just as he did those of Barack Obama?

One never knows, given that he's changing his position on just about everything else from day to day, and even from hour to hour.

7 comments:

Thomas Joseph said...

While the man may have thought he was referring to Barack Obama, he could just as well have been talking about President George W. Bush.

No offense IT, but you do this sometimes. So and so said this about Democrats, but look what the Republicans did.

That's all well and good, but at this point what does it really fucking matter? Essentially when you say that, you're saying that there really is not a "fundamental difference" between the two parties.

So, I want to know what you think. Are we well and truly fucked? Is there really a move towards socialism? If so, do you think that would be a bad idea? Why?

That's your homework assignment for today. :)

gnarlytrombone said...

Yes, it really fucking matters that a sizable chunk of the country can't distinguish between direct crisis capital injection and the abolition of bourgeois property.

ironymetrics said...

Not to do someone else's homework, but I think it matters as a way of illuminating how we arrived in present circumstances.

I think that we are well and truly fucked, at least for the foreseeable future. I don't think that the recent government handouts represent a move toward socialism, and I rather object when people characterize the state's panicked infusion of public wealth into private pockets as such. So I reject that aspect of IT's post. Simply because economic policy deviates from neo-liberalism in favor of state intervention and nationalization doesn't make it socialist. Socialism, at least in concept if not always in practice, favors more even diffusion of wealth across society. I'm not convinced that nationalizing some enormous financial firms and writing huge subsidy checks to Wall Street can be reasonably equated with that goal.

This is at most - with apologies to Nikolai Bukharin - socialism in one industry.

Anonymous said...

tj -

it is a very sensitive guy and when someone disagrees with him, his feelings get hurt. That may be why he now does things this way.

illusory tenant said...

It's Nikolai Bukharin that owes me the apology for hurting my feelings.

Anonymous said...

I just want to know why Dad29 didn't let us all know in advance that he was going to speak at the rally today.

Anonymous said...

it -

So you think Stalin did the right thing? At least you're consistent.:)