Wednesday, September 17, 2008


Hey, if the government can bail out multi-billion dollar corporations, why not the rest of us. I could use a little extra money these days. So could Joe, the guy who runs a little Bodega on Smith street in Carroll Gardens. His rent is about to double and he can't afford it. He may lose everything.

Shock waves hit Wall Street this week, when the government announced it would bail out America's fourth largest insurance company, AIG. The Fed will loan AIG a staggering 84 billion dollars. Not too shabby for fucking up the company. Earlier, the government came to the rescue of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac---giving them a financial boost to keep doling out mortgages. Several other banks were taken over by the feds. Then, banking giant Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy without government financial aid. I'm sure its CEO will resign out of embarrassment and then get a cushy multi-million dollar golden parachute for his miserable performance. That's the American way of life. That's capitalism at its best.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a big believer in capitalism. Hell, the Chinese are finally getting it. But, how many more major corporations are going to go belly up because of sour loan deals and a bad economy. I hear Washington Mutual may be next in line asking for Uncle Sam's help. Our Treasury Secretary has insisted there will be no more bail outs, but just you wait. I don't think that's the final word on the matter. He still reports to the President and to a certain extent Congress.

So let's review. The federal government has loaned or donated hundreds of billions of dollars already to banks and the like. We're paying a bundle for two wars in the Middle East and now the men who want to be in the White House plan on giving Americans ANOTHER tax break. I'd like to know where the government is secretly growing those money trees my grandmother kept talking about when I was a kid. I like Mayor Bloomberg's idea. RAISE TAXES. He figures you charge people a fortune to drive and they might just give up the car and take the train: save the environment and yourself money at the same time.

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