Monday, September 29, 2008

Bailout Plan Tanks Because House Republicans Get They Widdle Feewings Hurt (UPDATED)

ABC News:

The bickering over the vote began immediately with Republicans alleging that a speech by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi blaming the crisis on the policies of the Bush administration prompted wavering Republicans to vote against the bill.

"We could have gotten there today had it not been for this partisan speech by the speaker on the floor of the House," said Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, the House minority leader. He said Pelosi's speech "poisoned" efforts to get Republicans to back the bill.

Note well what' s being said here. According to their own leader, House Republicans whose support of this bill was necessary for its passage voted against it, not because it was bad for the country (which it very well may be) but because they got mad at something Nancy Pelosi said about them.

That's real leadership, right there. When are they going to get some damn grownups in charge?

UPDATE: Thank you Barney Frank:

"Well if that stopped people from voting, then shame on them," he said. "If people's feelings were hurt because of a speech and that led them to vote differently than what they thought the national interest (requires), then they really don't belong here. They're not tough enough."


But think about this. Somebody hurt my feelings, so I will punish the country. That’s hardly plausible. And there are 12 Republican members who were ready to stand up for the economic interest of America, but not if anybody insulted them.

I’ll make an offer. Give me those 12 people’s names and I will go talk uncharacteristically nicely to them and tell them what wonderful people they are and maybe they’ll now think about the country.


Dave Zeltserman said...

Barney Frank was my congressman for years when I lived in Brookline, and he's one of the few politicians I respect, and he's right on target with this. The crisis is too serious for a version of this bill not to get passed over the next week, but even so, every congressperson who voted against this--Republican and Democrat--disgraced their office today by putting their own selfish interests ahead of the country.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Absolutely. Swallow what's already in your throat and get on with it.

John Dishon said...

Regardless of why, I'm glad the bill failed. $700 billion will only increase inflation and devalue the dollar even more.

Plus, these Congressmen were voting the way their constituents wanted them to. Every report I have seen has said that the vast majority of emails and calls to Congressmen have been against the bailout.

Here's Ron Paul's remarks before the vote today:

JD Rhoades said...

John, I hear you. And I had grave doubts about even the "improved" bill that came to a vote.

If Boehner had said, "you know, the bill didn't fly with some of our own people because it didn't take into account their free-market principles and the concerns of their constituents, so we'll have to get back to work on something that they can live with," he'd be a statesman in my book. As it is, he's a whiny little bitch.

John McCain's apparently hopped on the Waaahmbulance too, blaming Obama for the failure of the bill.

Dave Zeltserman said...

okay, let's see, Ron Paul, knows more about this than Warren Buffet, Paul Bernanke, Paulson, and just about every analyst on Wall Street? So just because the average person is reacting out of anger and is demanding a course of action that's going to be disastrous for the country, these congresspersons should side with them? Why's that?

John Dishon said...

Are you serious Dave? Paulson and Bernanke have responsibility in making this mess, and you want to trust them to get us out? And Buffett is planning to invest $5 billion in Goldman-Sachs. Could it be that Buffett is trying to take advantage of a bailout? Analysts on Wall Street perhaps have a conflict of interest as well.

Ron Paul predicted all this five years ago. He's been right about the economy every time. So yeah, he does know more about it.

Most Americans don't want the bailout, and many economists warned against it as well.

You're not one of those people who believe everything you see on FOX and CNN are you?

John Dishon said...

One other point:

They scared us into going into Iraq, and now they're trying to scare us into a bailout. They want to get this as quickly as possible before America realizes it's getting screwed. The Patriot Act passed the day after 9/11.

Well, it didn't work this time. Enough Americans have woken up to the government's treachery. Hopefully we won't fall for these scare tactics again.

Look at the link at the bottom. in 2002 the Dow was in the 7,000s. Today it closed in the 10,000s. Yeah it was down 777 points today, the largest single day drop in history, but the world didn't end.

John McFetridge said...

You know, on 9/11 America closed its airspace and hundred of planes stranded over the Atlantic landed instead in Canada. Thousands of people were housed and fed for days until they could return home. A lot have come back to Canada on vacation.

But in the first moments of 9/11 Canada didn't come out strongly enough on the side of the Bush administration's take on the new world order so a few days later when he gave his address to the nation, Bush thanked all of America's allies - and quite clearly refused to mention Canada. This hurt feelings stuff is nothing new.

And by the way, JohnD, another guy who predicted this financial crisis was Karl Marx.

pattinase (abbott) said...

From the Washington Post: "It's no coincidence then that of the 205 Members who voted in support of the bill today, there are only two -- Reps. Chris Shays (R-Conn.) and Jon Porter (R-Nev.) -- who find themselves in difficult reelection races this fall. The list of the 228 "nays" reads like a virtual target list for the two parties."
Voting the way they needed to to get elected not for any good reason.

John Dishon said...

Jeffrey A. Miron, economist from Harvard, explains why the bailout is a bad idea:

Anonymous said...

Don Anderson said...

Why blame the Republicans? 95 Democrats didn't have the balls to vote with their colleagues.

JD Rhoades said...

95 Democrats didn't have the balls to vote with their colleagues.

The Democrats delivered the votes they promised for a Republican plan. The Republicans torpedoed their own Dear Leader's plan, endorsed by their White Haired Knight.

You can spin it all you want, boyo, but the fact is, the consequences of this are all on the Repubs. They own this failure.

Fran said...

The more I hear of and from Barney Frank, the more I respect him.

Dusty, on a different note, here's a link to an artistic rendering of Palin that you might appreciate.

John Dishon said...

140 Democrats sided with Bush on this (because wanted this plan to pass). Only 65 Republicans did.

133 Republicans and 95 Democrats voted no.

It's only 12 Republicans that Barney Frank talks about.

You can draw your own conclusions. But if the Republicans "own" anything here it's a victory because the bailout was a terrible plan.

JD Rhoades said...

if the Republicans "own" anything here it's a victory because the bailout was a terrible plan.

Probably...And yet, the Republican leadership is trying to pin the failure to pass on Democrats in the most desperate and transparent manner. Wonder why that is?

John Dishon said...

I guess they hope it'll get passed to Obama and help McCain win?

LongHairedWeirdo said...

There's an interesting bit about this. One of the things that's killing the investment banks is that they have to have so much in assets to cover the amount they have in investments, just like a bank. A bank needs to keep so much depositor cash in reserve when making loans.

The problem is that they value their assets by "what will someone pay for them?"

The trouble is, no one will pay *anything* for them.

"I have ten million in bonds, backed by mortgages; how much will you give me for them?"

"I'm not interested; find some other sucker".

If they were willing to buy from each other, a kind of gentleman's agreement, "I'll buy bonds from you, you buy them from me; we both get to value our bonds at fair market value", things wouldn't be as bad.

But they won't. Why not? Well, what would you do if you were an investment bank, and someone offered to buy your bonds? You'd find the worst, most default-worthy bonds you had, and get them off the books.

Except... you know that's what the other guy is going to do, too, right? And what if it turns out his bonds are even worse than yours?

It's really kind of funny, if you look at it just right. Everyone standing around with bonds that are starting to stink, unable to sell them because everyone is desperately afraid that the other guy's bonds stink just a bit worse. The free market can't fix this because it dictates that whoever makes the first buy ends up getting the worst assets.

I can't say whether the government bailout is a good idea or not, but it *could* be a good plan. Acting as a buyer for assets no one else will buy is a bit of a gamble, but it might end up being the quickest way to stabilize the markets.

Then again, George W. thinks it's a good idea, meaning I'm automatically skeptical.

I mean, George W. does think that tying one's shoes is a good idea, so he's not a complete idiot, but he still thinks the whole Iraq thing was smart, so you really can't trust him.