The New York Times on Our Great Leader

From an article by Gail Collins, on the Op-Ed page of the 20 September 2008 New York Times:

These times are so perilous that George W. Bush emerged from his burrow on Friday to reassure the American people about the financial crisis.

Looking either grim or overmedicated, Bush spoke for several minutes  —  1,260 words worth of reassurance.  That was a far more ambitious effort than the day before, when, as Politico’s Roger Simon noted, our president devoted 100 fewer words to his public utterances on the collapsing economy than he did to toasting the president of Ghana at dinner.

Behind the-first-president-with-an-M.B.A.-and-a-lot-of-good-it-did-us stood the Fed chairman, Ben Bernanke, who appears to be actually running the government.

See, this is interesting:  self never knew that W had an MBA.  Now her next order of business is to find out where.  Or, perhaps it should be Ben Bernanke self should be investigating.  Does Bernanke have an M.B.A.?  And if so, from which august institution?  Would anyone from the alma maters of either Bush and Bernanke like to trumpet their assocation with these two stellar alums?  Self thinks not.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

The New York Times on the Budget Bailout

It took only eight years, dear blog readers. Eight years to totally trash a country. Did Osama anticipate how wildly he would succeed, when he devised the plan to send airplanes into the twin towers? Did he anticipate how easily Bush & Co. would fall into the trap, declare war on Iraq in the interests of national security and put us into this hole?

Let’s see: hubby and self’s retirement funds are now less than half what they were worth this time a year ago. Last week, the president attempted to soothe the raging waters with proposal of a $700 billion budget bailout. (But where is he? Self means, in person? Should he not be before the American people at this very moment, to explain what we the citizens can expect from this bailout? For it’s certain that we, and our children, and our children’s children will be paying the price for many, many years)

Here are a few excerpts from a New York Times editorial of 20 September, nine full days before yesterday’s stock meltdown:

  • It is painfully clear that the financial system will not rebound on its own from the excessive lending and borrowing of the Bush years and the credit collapse in their wake. The one-bailout-at-a-time approach hasn’t worked. And modest steps are no longer an option.
  • What is this going to cost the taxpayers and who decides? It’s generally believed that many of the troubled assets that the government would buy will, in time, be worth more than they can fetch in today’s chaotic markets. That’s far from a sure thing. The assets are tied to housing, so their value will depend on how far prices fall, how many people end up defaulting and how long it takes before housing rebounds — all big unknowns.
  • The administration and lawmakers also need to tell Americans that the era of cheap and easy money is over and that there are more tough times to come. Whose taxes will have to go up? How will the government help to create the jobs of the future? How will the most vulnerable Americans be protected? And they need to explain that the cost of the bailouts will compete with other spending.

Why not call a spade a spade? The Times asserts: “The regulatory failure . . . was grounded in the Bush administration’s magical belief that the market, with its invisible hand, works best when it is left alone to self regulate and self correct.”

That’s sheer laziness, dear blog readers. And it’s indeed a very cavalier — if not a highly criminal — way to run a country.

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