Fool Poll: Do You Agree With the House's Vote?

Dear Fools,

As you've probably seen by now, the proposed bailout plan that went before the House of Representatives this afternoon was voted down, forestalling any progress our financial system can undergo to dig ourselves out of the mess we're now in.

Regardless of who's to blame or who should be held accountable, these are extremely serious times not just for Wall Street, but also our entire economy. The debate over how and why this happened can go on for days, but it's important to realize that the proposed bailout is designed to help the financial system, not Wall Street fat cats hoping to cash in on your hard-earned tax dollars.

In just the past two weeks, our economy has witnessed the demise of Lehman Brothers, AIG (NYSE: AIG  ) , Washington Mutual (NYSE: WM  ) , and Wachovia (NYSE: WB  ) , all organizations that -- despite their obvious missteps over the years -- play a vital role in keeping our economy running. Without government intervention, the problems are guaranteed to get quite a bit worse. Warren Buffett -- known for his cool head in times of financial panic -- warned Congress over the weekend that without a plan, we'd be heading into "the biggest financial meltdown in American history."

We understand the paramount level of frustration right now, particularly because of the blatant amount of greed that underlined Wall Street over the past many years. Regardless, the decisions that will be made in the coming days on Capitol Hill will have a serious impact on every American.

Our question to you today is, "Do you agree with the House's rejection of the bailout plan?"

Please take a moment to weigh in via our poll below and add comments if you feel so inclined.

For related Foolishness:

Fool contributor Morgan Housel doesn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article. The Fool has a disclosure policy.


Read/Post Comments (148) | Recommend This Article (56)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

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  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 3:55 PM, TheBigDiehl wrote:

    The people down on this bill will be the first ones to complain about their stock accounts and 401ks being down, and then be griping about the long unemployment lines if the bill doesn't pass. This bill may not be perfect, but we all need it. Quit screwing around and pass the $#%&** thing!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:00 PM, SteveTheInvestor wrote:

    As far as investing is concerned, those who are long on stocks are screwed either way. The market shot downward on prospects of the bailout. It then shot downward even faster when the measure failed. It just doesn't matter. Stocks are heading nowhere but down and are not a good place to be and won't be for some time to come. I've been selling and now regret not selling everything a year ago. I'm certain that my retirement date has just been extended another 2 years, if not longer.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:01 PM, FreeNachos wrote:

    We have to stop buying things we can't afford. Maybe the "bitter pill" we need isn't this bailout plan but the inevitable financial reboot.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:07 PM, Lynn02 wrote:

    After going through hurricane Katrina 3 years ago, and going without jack for a few days, you find out real quick what you really must need in life. Priorities change significantly. Do you really need that X Box 360? What about the 50 inch High Def TV? Food/water/clothes were pretty good. We survived.

    This bailout has thankfully been defeated. Americans are a resilient group, and I think that the level of anger from the public was grossly underestimated by politicians/Wall street.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:07 PM, matthewbanis wrote:

    THANK GOD!!!! Thank God this nightmare of a bill didn't go through. We need to prevent COMMUNISM in this country. Let the natural order of CAPITALISM take place.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:07 PM, mpatient wrote:

    I'm pretty shocked the bill failed. The politicians are so afraid of upsetting someone that they have chosen the easy way out - do nothing. In the meantime, things are not going to fix themselves. I don't have a lot of investments, but I'm sitting on them. Panic is only going to make things worse. The "doom & gloom" mentality of the media and panic selling has certainly added more water to this sinking ship, but I'm still foolish enough to believe that people in general are going to get themselves together and realize something needs to be done - even if it's not perfect. But, this is one time where the so-called politicians need to stop being political and step up as LEADERS!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:11 PM, 307wolverine wrote:

    I'm tired of socialism. Let the guilty parties pay for their mistakes. We need to get the gov't OUT OF the economy, not increase its involvement.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:12 PM, lluluien wrote:

    Until they add a clause to this bill to draw and quarter the executives and political officials responsible for this, I'm opposed to this bill 100%. I'm sick and tired of paying for other peoples' irresponsibility and bad decisions.

    Let the market reset. We can't rewards these speculators or they'll just start working again on new creative ways to fleece us after this mess clears up, and we'll have another mess to clean up in 15 more years.

    Here is the House voting record for the "bailout" resolution. I suggest the rest of the 90% of us opposed to this measure call our Representatives who voted "Aye" and inform them of our votes for their opponents in the coming election. Maybe they'll change their tune when this inevitably comes up for a vote again this week:

    http://clerk.house.gov/evs/2008/roll674.xml

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:14 PM, JJMSpartan wrote:

    To pass any bill that has balooned from 12 pages to 108 over a weekend without public review is the potential for a disaster. Aside from the fact that there needs to be action, there MUST be checks and balances put into place to ensure that:

    1) This can't happen again. The root cause was making home loans to people who were not capable of paying those loans back. At a minimum, getting a loan should be as difficult as it was 20 years ago.

    2) The US Taxpayer will recover their investment. If the taxpayers are investing up to 700 Billion, they deserve the appropriate return on those monies. Any amount given must be a LOAN that is paid back with an acceptable rate of return.

    3) There must be accountability for the mistakes. No golden parachutes. Many indictments. No bank or individual gets rich off the US Taxpayers money.

    To guarantee that those things happen, it's going to take more than just a weekend to write the code and verify that it has those protections.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:15 PM, RaulChapin wrote:

    The Big Diehl, some of us actually have integrity and that means going with what we think is right even if it means less money for us or a later retirement date.

    So yes my mutual fund (25% S&P500, 50% non USA stocks 25% bonds) is down 10% YTD and I expect it go down a good chunk more if the bailout does not pass.

    Are the people pro the bailout because it is the right thing in their minds, or because it means they will get their 401k's saved at the possible expense of everyone else?

    Anyway, if nothing else this short term victory for the no bailout crew will send the message that it is not so easy to just up and spend 700Billion because there "Might be and end of the financial world"

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:25 PM, jrdown wrote:

    My whole family (hubby, sister and her husband) are against the bailout plan. I am sorry that big banks and such made so many stupid errors that they are failing. I understand that the mortgage subprime mess began with Clinton and extended through the Bush administration.

    Anyway, perhaps it is time for the demise of those companies that are failures. Something does need to be done to those that took multiples of millions with them as they fled the leadership position but let the chips fall where they may.

    Government bailouts just cannot continue. If they don't, it will never end.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:25 PM, MedPeddler wrote:

    This plan was crafted too hastily. Your article said, "Regardless of who's to blame or who should be held accountable, these are extremely serious times not just for Wall Street, but our entire economy. The debate over how and why this happened can go on for days, but it's important to realize the proposed bailout is designed to help the financial system, not Wall Street fat cats hoping to cash in off of your hard-earned tax dollars." Accountability is the issue - not so we can see people do the perp walk - but so we can put measures in place to prevent such an event from happening again. Congress has never done anything this fast. That's reason enough not to trust it.

    I don't know even a tenth of the details, but here's what I do know:

    1) Too much power is in the hands of the Treasury Secretary. The bill gives him the authority to do whatever he believes is necessary to stabilize the economy Who will oversee him?

    2) Where is the money coming from? From here on Main Street it looks like the only thing that can be predicted with 100% certainty is runaway inflation resulting from such a voluminous increase in the money supply.

    3) The people that caused the problem - or at least looked the other way while it happened - are in charge. Who else could benefit but the fat cats, including those in Washington? Well, except maybe stupid borrowers (see next point).

    4) The whole thing is immoral. There I said it. Somebody had to. Bankers got greedy and got rewarded (Franklin Raines). Washington weasels on the House and Senate Finance committees had their hands in the cookie jar (Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Barack Obama). Borrowers bought houses they couldn't afford and they would have gotten a free pass via mortgage renegotiation. And it would all have come from the pockets of those who pay their mortgages and their other bills on time. Call me simple-minded if you will, but that sounds like stealing to me, and stealing is wrong.

    5) Barney Frank said the assets the people would be buying are riskless. If they're riskless then there must be no crisis and noone is really losing money. I already make enough stupid investment decisions, I don't want the government doing it on my behalf.

    6) Money was earmarked in this bill for unions and various other special interests that are non-germaine to the crisis.

    7) This is where I disagree with the Fool's position the most. I don't wan't the government having an equity stake in anything. That's Marxism pure and simple.

    My hope is that while Congress tries to look like it's doing something the market will work it all out. Banks are being bought by other banks and risk remains where it belongs - in the hands of the owners of the businesses. Had this bill passed it would have been the death of accountability, American capitalism and the Constitution.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:25 PM, JBKirtley wrote:

    What I would like to see is some kind of plan that guides the financial sector to cover these substantial losses out of future profits from what good business they might still have. Bad mortgages need to be rewritten with substantial time extensions (mortgages in Japan cover 3 generations now) that allow the homeowners to cover payments and the mortgage holders to eventually make a profit. The burden on both the maker and the borrower for such a long time will serve as a stern reminder for us all of the value of living within our means. Allowing everyone to walk away with a swat on the backside is just encouragement to see what else might be gotten away with. Business loans to assure solvency AFTER troubled companies show some resolve and take steps to correct the fundamental errors in these parts of their business models is more prudent and potentially profitable for all involved. Hard work and commitment to making an honest buck is the only thing that will solve this problem.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:28 PM, CPSLO1999 wrote:

    For better or for worse, we live in a free market society. When the government removes the penalties associated with risky behavior, that behavior becomes rampant. The government then feels compelled to step in and regulate or legislate away the new risky behavior. This principle has been repeatedly demonstrated in various social programs over the years and now in the financial sector. The guilty (and many innocent) will pay for the mistakes made by these financial institutions, but look at the few banks who are in a great position now. BofA, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Chase, etc. were all accused of being stogy because they wouldn't play in this high-flying money-making arena. Now they are all taking this opportunity to grab some huge values.

    Furthermore, this bailout punishes smart investors and smart taxpayers who didn't play in this game, it punishes people who bought homes within their means, it punishes those who have waited to buy a home because they couldn't afford to pay as much as the market was asking. It also punishes anyone who spends a dime in the US as inflation is bound to skyrocket.

    Let the markets correct themselves. We'll pay a hefty penalty now, but huge government intervention brings the far larger and longer cost of a socialized financial system.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:34 PM, HKendrick wrote:
  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:37 PM, crinama wrote:

    Here during 2004 hearings on Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are Democrats Barney Frank, Maxine Waters, Gregory Meeks, Lacy Clay and Artur Davis excoriating regulators for suggesting there was a problem at Fannie and Freddie, Republicans Richard Baker, Ed Royce, Don Manzullo and Chris Shays calling for more vigorous oversight of Fannie and Freddie, and former Fannie Mae CEO, member of the Clinton administrator and Obama adviser Franklin Raines describing the mortgages they were buying as “riskless” and suggesting capital required to support them should be under 2%.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_MGT_cSi7Rs&eurl=http://5...

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:41 PM, luscious25 wrote:

    i hate the plan but it seems to be a necessary evil the reason for it not passing seems more to be about the upcoming election than it does about the actual plan. if the politicians are so concerned about the public they need to show it by putting an effective plan into place now before the econmic situation gets worse.we have to look past it being a bailout of the "fat cats" of wall street and more on the ramifications of whats going to happen to america if we do nothing. the eyes of the world is on us and if we fail we become vulnerable that is not a place we want to be in.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:42 PM, BuyFood wrote:

    Here Here...Congress got it right today!

    I'm a small business owner and sick and tired of paying into our goverments madness!. My IRA dropped like everyone elses. So be it as this economy is sick and this is what needs to happen. The fear that my business (grocery store) would not be able to borrow money to stay in business is BS! Tell you what folks, if I have to borrow to pay my employees and stay in business I am no better off than the bastard banks that did that very thing. The good banks will survive and the healty will loan money to good healthy businesses. This is the free market system at work.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:43 PM, Pmccorm wrote:

    Wow, I am shocked at the lack of understanding of how our financial system works in this country by people that frequent the Fool website. This website and EVERY respectable economics publication out there explains in excruciating detail the point of this rescue package. "Free" market behavior is what got us into this mess in the first place, so to now advocate that it will get us out is ignoring history. Wikipedia the "great depression" and maybe you will understand what is at stake. This is like the climate change issue, can we afford to be wrong? I say no. Is the bill perfect, no, but it is a good compromise between bailout and taxpayer protection in the form of equity stakes. However, for those that are against it, I recommend you spend more time reading, and less time ranting, to understand exactly what you are wishing upon us.

    Full disclosure: I am not nor ever have been in the financial business nor did I benefit financially from any of the last two "bubbles".

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:44 PM, rxal20 wrote:

    Future: All medicine and no sugar for quite some time. No two ways around it.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:47 PM, adpack wrote:

    Pelosi's words,

    "It's a staggering figure.... $700 billion, a staggering number, but only a part of the cost of the failed Bush economic policies to our country,'' Pelosi said, blaming Bush for inheriting a budget surplus and turning it into a record deficit with " reckless economic policies.... "It's really an anything goes mentality, no regulation, no supervision, no discipline."

    1. 2001-April, the Bush administration, in its 2002 budget proposal, asserted that the size of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is a "potential problem," and that financial trouble in these "Government Sponsored Entities," or GSEs, could "cause strong repercussions in financial markets."

    2. 2003, autumn, the Bush administration pushed Congress to create a new federal agency to regulate and supervise Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

    On 2003-Sep-10, then-Treasury Secretary John Snow, before the House Financial Services Committee, " We need a strong, world-class regulatory agency to oversee the prudential operations of the GSEs, and the safety, and the soundness of their financial activities."

    On the same day, 2003-Sep-10, at the same hearing, the ranking Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee Congressman Barney Frank (now chairman of the same committee) said in response, "Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are not in a crisis. The more people, in my judgement, exaggerate a threat of safety and soundness, the more people conjur up the possibility of serious financial losses, to the Treasury, which I do not see, I think we see entities which are fundamentally sound financially and withstand some of the disaster scenarios, and even if there were a problem the federal government doesn't bail them out. But the more pressure there is there, the less I think we see in terms of affordable housing."

    The legislation the Bush administration put forward that day was blocked.

    3. Alan Greenspan, 2005-Sep-17, to the House Financial Services Committee, on Fannie/Freddie, "Enabling these institutions to increase in size--they they will once the crisis in their judgement passess--we are placing the total financial system of the future at substantial risk."

    4. Alan Greenspan, 2006-Apr-6, "If we fail to strengthen GSE regulation we increase the possibility of insolvency and crisis."

    The same day, Democratic Senator Chuck Schummer, "I think Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac over the years has done a good job and are an intrinsic part of making America the best-housed people in the world. If you look over the last 20 or whatever years, they have done a very, very, good job."

    5. Senate floor, 2006-May-25, John McCain, "For years I have been concerned about the regulatory structure that governs Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac... and the sheer magnitude of these companies and the role they play in the housing market... the GSEs need to be reformed without delay." In the Senate Banking Committee, the Fannie/Freddie reform legislation that McCain cosponsored, 100% of the Republicans voted FOR it, and 100% of the Democrats, including Chuck Schummer and Chris Dodd, voted AGAINST it. As we know now, Dodd received $133,900 in campaign contributions from Fannie/Freddie ( per opensecrets.org ), ranking #1 in Congress. Obama received $105,949 from Fannie / Freddie ( per opensecrets.org ), ranking #3 in Congress. Senator Obama was silent on this legislation.

    6. 2008-Sep-25, former President Clinton indicated he AGREED with Fox News assertions that Democrats are responsible for failure to rein in Fannie/Freddie--Bill Clinton told ABC's Chris Cuomo that for years, Democrats have been "resisting any efforts by Republicans in the Congress or by me when I was President to put some standards and tighten up a little on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac."

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:51 PM, omegamel wrote:

    The dow should be at 8800-9000 this year. The market is just correcting itself. Don't panic. (avg increase of 6% for the last 40yrs). The bubbles are collapsing, the economy is not ending. There are plenty of good jobs out there (go to Career Builder.com). Housing prices are where they should be. Yes, a lot of investors lost there money, and banks aren't getting there loans paid back. There will be new banks and lenders in the years to come.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 4:54 PM, luscious25 wrote:

    alot of people to think that the market will work itself out i am not so sure. if you ever read anything by adam smith he warned against extensive deregulation this was a storm waiting to happen. governments need to be more involved not less thats the problem now not enough monitoring and restrictions in place. free market should rule with regulations and a safety net in place. it's not about socialism (education could be considered socialism) but whats best for the general public. if my stock fails ok i knew the risk but if it fails because of some whacked out bs loans that shouldn't be legal than i have a problem. my portfolio is bleeding and i want the leaders who are suppose to be LEADERS to get off their ass and do their job whether they are reelected or not is not important as doing the job they were elected to do NOW!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:02 PM, SuperEmy wrote:

    That Bill was a joke, wheres Milton Friedman when you need him :(

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:02 PM, whereaminow wrote:

    is it me, or has the Fool community taken crazy pills.

    what part of Government Sponsored Enterprise (GSE) reminds you of a "free market capitalist" economy? That's what Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are: Government Sponsored Enterprises.

    Let me say that one more time for the Socialists: GOVERNMENT SPONSORED ENTERPRISE

    Next for all, Socialists and Capitalists alike, please visit the Ludwig Von Mises Institute for intelligent analysis of our economy.

    Ludwig Von Mises is famous for his 1923 paper Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth, in which he theorized that the pricing mechanism which made free market capitalism rational (again, something America has come close to, but has never had), made socialism irrational. In fact, since socialism lacked a pricing mechanism to distribute goods and services, it was indeed a giant price fixing scheme.

    Now, reflect on that last statement while you consider the role of Freddie and Fannie in our economy again, and as you consider the government's plan to buy worthless assets above market price.

    It's too bad that the editors of Fool have lost their way. It appears they have sipped the Manifesto, and the wrong one at that. Maybe had they taken the time to read The Revolution: A Manifesto by Ron Paul, they might have been introduced to a cogent economic policy.

    Sound money.

    Balanced budgets.

    End the Federal Reserve.

    Return to the Gold Standard.

    And for pete's sake, enough government involvement in our economy.

    Cheers,

    David

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:05 PM, drod0886 wrote:

    Has anyone seen those commercials now where you can get an equity loan using your car?

    Are we making the same mistake again there.

    I know it's sort of off topic but I'm just curious to see what people think of that.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:07 PM, amcress wrote:

    To me this is a question of trust, namely, how can we trust this administration to get it right? Can we believe the Bush/Cheny Chicken Little act? Can we put our faith in Paulson, the Goldman-Sachs hot shot that helped get us into this mess? They are all owned lock, stock, and barrel by big oil and the rest of the super rich. The current plan does not have enough controls in it, and yet is too much for many in the House to accept. I'm on the cusp of retirement, with LOTS to lose, but I'd rather take a really serious hit and work a few more years than give in to yet another "Trust me" deal with these guys.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:13 PM, LiamFisher wrote:

    ....."Unbelievable. Wall Street and its backers created this mess and now they are going to clean up like bandits."... ..... No, we, as a PEOPLE, created this mess. It was our own greed and excesses. We did nothing to stop the madness. We did nothing to demand that fraudulent legislation be repealed. We did nothing about making our lawmakers and representatives accountable to US. Now, Wall Street, the Lenders and the Politicians took advantage of this, but ultimately, it is our own spending/savings habits and appathy that caused this. No one held a gun to any one else's head and said "Buy more house than you can afford" or "Go ahead, run up that credit card, we'll get you another one!" No one told us we had to speculate in the stock market. No one kept us from organizing and voting out corrupt Politicians. We did this to ourselves. The Problem is that those of US that are responsible refuse to look in the mirror and admit who is ultimately at fault. It's much easier to cast blame far and wide. Unfortunately, those of US that have been fiscally responsible are the one's that are getting the short end of the stick. As usual, we will have to wipe the backsides of the wealthy, the politicians, the welfare bums, and the illegals to make our country somewhat whole again. But that is always the case. Remember, no good deed goes unpunished. I am reminded of the famous Pogo cartoon..... . "We have met the enemy.....and he is us!" Respectfully, Michael

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:17 PM, NorthCarolinaKen wrote:

    There are two elements in the current crisis: securitization of collateralized loans, including mortgages, and the collapse of the housing market. The companies and individuals who tried to exploit CDOs and related instruments, and think Fannie, Freddie and Lehman Brothers as examples here as well as people who got loans they knew they couldn't afford all are contributing factors but not the main line issues. The problem with securitized debt itself is that it was never openly traded and much of our current issues, particularly pricing of these instruments would never have happened if there were market makers and freely traded markets for them. This was not an evil plot however. The holders of these securities planned on keeping them to maturity. Most people would be surprised at who holds these instruments - virtually across the board in financial institutions, including mutual and retirement funds. The notion that this is only a Wall Street issue is very misguided.

    The other component is the housing crises. Part of it is indeed defaults but most of it is directly caused by the drop in sales prices and the corresponding loss of collateral securing the mortgages. Dropping of collateral drops the face value of the securities and in turn the ability of the institutions holding them to lend, including new mortgages. This in turn drives housing prices lower in a vicious circle. Some of the questionable participants and I see Fannie and Freddie as likely in that camp accelerated the housing bubble and contributed to it but the issue is that the fall of prices is not stopping not that it got too high.

    Lending institutions cannot lend against this collateral because they can't price it. Mostly at risk now, is not Wall Street but the Regional Banks. Whachovia was our largest regional until it failed today. Washington Mutual was our largest thrift. Most of the others are at risk and you are seeing the same stock price death spiral as with Wachovia.

    There are reckless institutions like Lehman Brothers and potential malfeasance on the part of others. Federal Prosecuters have supoened Freddie and Fannie to investigate potentially criminal activity. They spent hundreds of millions on lobbying Congress over the years and frankly, one should not be overly supprised to see some of our Congressmen in orange jumpsuits before this is over. Large amounts of money to curry political favor can easily cross the line. All of this is interesting but side shows not the main event.

    What has happened is that our Financial System has frozen up Coast to Coast. The country cannot progress without lending and the failure of lending is what got us into the Great Depression. The populist cry for the heads of financial institutions and outrage in "bailing out Wall Street" do not perceive that it themselves that are in peril and need rescue.

    The intent of TARP was to separate the housing related issues from the rest of the economy to get Main Street going again. Replace the collateralized securities with Treasuries and banks can honor lines of credit to businesses large and small.

    This all could become very, very bad for all of us. People who see this accurately and unemotionally need to start speaking up. Too many in Congress are pandering to a confused mob rather than exercising calm judgement. We need to inject some reason into this. If we have to wait for the first quarter to resolve this, I fear many millions of us will be on the street and out of work.

    Ken

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:19 PM, whereaminow wrote:

    Michael,

    It's important for Americans to take responsibility for not holding their legislators accountable.

    We must also, however, hold the Federal Reserve accountable for placing excess credit in the hands of the banking industry.

    As any economist (that hasn't sold out to big gov) will tell you, excess credit causes malinvestment.

    Take a moment to Google: "Money, Banking and the Federal Reserve" video,

    The video is 45 minutes long, presented by the aforementioned Ludwig Von Mises Institute, and it clearly explains how our way of life is threatened by this unrestrained monster.

    Sound money.

    Balanced budgets.

    End the Federal Reserve

    Return to the Gold Standard.

    Ron Paul 2012

    Cheers,

    David

    www.mises.org

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:22 PM, Clavdivs wrote:

    What irks me is that Paulson did not have any alternate plan, so the Fool can say this wasn't a bailout of Wall Street fat cats but lack of a Plan B belies that statement. What other potentially invigorating things for the economy can we do with that kind of money...sever our dependence on foreign oil by developing new technologies, improve our education system, provide healthcare for everyone? All those things could do wonders for spending power of average Americans...not just Paulson/Bernanke's golfing buddies. That is an astronomical sum of money, it shouldn't just go into a pit dug by irresponsible home owners and shady lenders.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:26 PM, whereaminow wrote:

    Ken,

    That was an excellent analysis of the problem, but you failed to touch on the policy that created the housing price bubble that needed to be adjusted in the first place.

    While empty suits and skirts in media and Washington scramble to tell us what we already know, it was only the Austrian School economists who consistently predicted this crisis would come.

    And they have a fine track record of understanding these problems dating back one hundred years.

    While Ron Paul, an Austrian School economist, was running for President he was LAUGHED AT for predicting this very mess.

    Now you ask me to listen to the people who mocked him? Rather than listening to those who saw this coming: Ron Paul, Peter Schiff, Lew Rockwell, Jeffrey Tucker, Thomas Woods, and others?

    The Austrian economists continue to advise a policy of restraint.

    Sound money.

    Balanced budgets.

    End the Federal Reserve.

    Return to the Gold Standard.

    Or, bail everybody out and prolong the agony.

    Cheers,

    David

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:27 PM, clingo wrote:

    I have read the proposal on Washington Watch. While we do need a plan to solve this problem, the proposal by the Democrats is not it. We must not include payment of interest to these failed institutions. WE must eliminate interest rates that vary depending on which part of your credit card is accessed. We must include usury clauses to prevent recover at the expense of those who need some but not much credit. Credit card accounts must be redefined as revolving charge accounts and the maximum penalty for being late on only one payment, even if this is on successive months, must be limited to the interest earned on the outstanding balance. An account that is two months late should be suspended until brought current and possibly have the limit reduced.

    This is a required change in our credit laws. Failure to prevent a repeat by not including needed reforms is not acceptable.

    Changes in interest rate not related to the borrower's actions must be prohibited.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:34 PM, 3646rej wrote:

    Why is it so hard to understand we( the tax payers) are all ready on the hook? The mess, loss of jobs, our markets will be staggering compaired to what if any the bail out would have cost. Get the politics and hate of Wall Street out of this and use some common sense. I am now very afraid for our future. RJ

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:34 PM, wrongnumber wrote:

    It's too late to blame the evil greed mongers. We must do something soon and I dispair that it will happen.

    When I read the comments above I see a lot of cynicism and mistrust. It may be warranted. I also see a lot of proposed ideas that may or may not be better than Paulson's proposal but those were not in any of the choices.

    I also see some folks who have no clue as to how much this melt down will cost them. During the depression unemployment rose to 35%. No one in my lifetime has seen more than 10 or 12% and that was a nightmare. How much do you think our government will spend to keep people from starving? Where will the money come from because no one will have income on which to pay taxes?

    Many of us are relying on 401(k) plans and other pension investments to fund our retirements. When your former employer goes bankrupt and the plan's investments have lost 50% of their value, who will pay your pension? The same government may pick up some of the tab through the pension insurance. You would be receiving the same government money you were not willing to loan the banks to get through this crisis and the government has no chance to recover that through selling an investment it acquired at a discount.

    I sent an email to my congressman letting him know that I hold him responsible for the extra years I may have to work before I retire. He voted against this bill rather than taking a leadership position and educating his constituents on the consequences of failing to act. I hope someone comes up with an alternative that people can support but nothing will include everyone's wish list.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:35 PM, clingo wrote:

    Amcress,

    Of course not, but we certainly can not trust those who caused the problem in the first place by requiring that loans be made to those without the financial ability to repay the loans. This was caused by the Clinton Democrat controlled Congress requiring sub standard loans. This experiment in Social Engineering has now blown up in our faces.

    Unfortunately there are very few in the current Congress who are not tainted with support of, or at least failure to, oppose the system that blew up.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:37 PM, BeatArmy30 wrote:

    No bailout. Not now, not ever.The last decade has seen an entire generation of business school graduates waste its efforts on trading and capital transfers instead of investment and capital formation. The dislocation we are now going through must be wide enough and deep enough that our brightest young men and women will return to their proper role in our republic: leading our economy to and our government to prosperity.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:38 PM, kenkip wrote:

    I'm glad it didn't get passed!

    What the heck? Bush wants to BORROW more money to purchase bad paper!!! This makes no sense.

    Another way to look at it - The government wants to stabilize the credit market so we can add to our RECORD consumer debt level... This is insane!

    Buy gold!!! INVEST IN ALTERNATIVE ENERGY TECHNOLOGY!!! We're spending $500 Billion per year on foreign oil!!!

    The market will stabilize on its own. Short term pain now, or long term pain later!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:39 PM, clingo wrote:

    Note that Donald Trump expects the price of oil to fall dramatically which will, according to Trump, create a great rebound of the economy.

    I have noted that when oil prices fall the stock market goes up.

    It looks like we have many varied ideas about what this will bring from varied sources.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:39 PM, Gerlitz wrote:

    What a great day for American Taxpayers. I'm a ridiculously liberal democrat who didn't want to see this passed. It's a terrible bill for taxpayers. Yeah, the credit markets still suck, but last I checked Costco was still open. There's a ton of ways to clear out the toilet without flushing 700 million dollars down the drain to boot. Has anybody thought about regulating CDS's and moving them to an exchange? Stop believing the lie that what's good for Wall St. is good for Main St., hope this thing doesn't come round again and try to store up a little cash for the incredible bargains you're likely to find! Fool on!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:40 PM, Niteski wrote:

    Relax everyone. There is an alternative that can be done without the Legislature's approval. See below.

    Open the discount window to accept the distress securities. Create a valuation model based on time, type or other information to reach a realistic value. Lend "80%" of the value of a 50/50 blended package of currently acceptable collateral and revalued MBSs. This would limit the Government's exposure, or 60% of the revalued MBSs.,

    But most importantly, it would bring the "mark to market" valuations closer to the real underlying values indirectly, rather than directly. Which is the true purpose of the Bush, Paulson and Bernanke plan. There would also be no chance for any upside unless the rate were slightly increased. No carrying cost. No attachments. No PORK. I hope that this is "Plan B" and it will save the taxpayer from Congress and perhaps save the Financial system at the same time.

    Stephen Jensen

    Banker / Economist

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:44 PM, dancinglight wrote:

    Government intervention is what created a lot of this mess to start with. Numerous reports have been out for years warning about Federal policy and its negative effect on a free market. Under the guise of "saving our economy" the Senate put in pork projects as part of this bail-out bill, i.e., giving taxpayers' money to ACORN! This bill should not be passed in any form-capitalism will work if the government will let it. This fascism disguised as "helping the county" is disgusting and Congress should be ashamed.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:46 PM, aj5js35 wrote:

    It's unfortunate it didn't pass, odious as it is for the government to get involved. Maybe a time-line needs to be included in the bill, so the entities that caused the problem have to hustle to build their liquidity, rather than sitting back and just taking handouts. There should be high expectations of them to buy back the toxic paper the government is taking off their greedy hands, sooner rather than later. If it weren't for the potential for the market to plummet I'd actually like to see what would happen without government intervention. Don't think we have the luxury of time for that right now, though. I also strongly believe that this bill needs to be more clearly explained to the public so that they'll better understand the reality of what's at stake.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:53 PM, whereaminow wrote:

    I wish others in the Fool community were willing to address the monetary policy perpetuated by the Federal Reserve and fiat currency that created not only this mess, but also the 1929 boom/bust and the Great Depression.

    I see commentors here and always proclaiming that we are headed for another Great Depression if we don't read history.

    Well, even the Keynesians and Socialists now admit that 1) Federal Reserve policy of debasing the currency in the 1920s created the recipe for the 1929 bust - a policy similar to the one we have employed for the last 15 years. and 2) that the interventionist bailout of the government - both Hoover's and FDR's administrations only PROLONGED the depression.

    Yes, we are sure to repeat history. Or, you can take a deep breath and read this wonderful PDF version of Murray Rothbard's Austrian School analysis of the Great Depression:

    http://mises.org/rothbard/agd.pdf

    His description of policy and popular opinion bears such close resemblance to today that it's frightening. For those of us with a dispassionate and curious mind, it seems there is no hope.

    Sound money.

    Balanced budgets.

    End the Federal Reserve

    Return to the Gold Standard.

    Cheers,

    David

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:56 PM, Wally133 wrote:

    We are in a financial crisis everone agrees. We don't agree on how to get out of it. My opinion is to let free enterprise take this issue and deal with it. I think we can solve it. Get the government out of it. Watch oil!! You can see the price coming down when it looks like no dea is going to be made. Oil is now $96.00 a barrel. If this deal goes through watch oil jump up to $125.00 or more!! Let enterprise rule and you will see oil drop back to 30-40-50 dollars a barrel, and you will see the economy start a comback. It will take some time, and we will suffer a bit, but the fat cats, Wall Street and rest will have to pay for their poor business practices!! In the mean time maybe we can kick a bunch of legistators out of office and put some people in who are willing to work for the people instead of themselves.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 5:56 PM, WilyInvestor wrote:

    I'm definitely thankful this didn't pass today. This bill had quick fix written all over it, and at least in my experience quick fixes don't work...ever; they just make you feel better. Well, until you find out you just wasted your time and money :)

    Greed and socialistic policies got us into this debacle, so why not give capitalism a shot this go around shall we? I mean continuous growth is great, but last I checked we're not in a utopia, so sometimes we'll hit recessions.

    This is what irks me about government. So many times we already have laws that cover these situations, but someone gets lazy and doesn't enforce them. So, the natural reaction is to create more laws that won't get enforced.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:02 PM, IDJim90 wrote:

    Here's the scoop: If a bank wants to get rid of toxic paper, allow the public to bid on this paper. If the banks puts out $500K in mortgages and really wants to sell it, I'll bid $100K and kick the b*stards out of their house. I'm about ready to go to WFC and see if they'll take 60 cents on my up-to-date mortgage balance.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:05 PM, Azotic wrote:

    The problem with this bailout package is that it tries to address the wrong problem, by immunizing bondholders from their risk in holding bank debt rather than actually adding capital to the markets. Here's a pretty clear analysis of the question that economist John Hussman formulated as an open letter to Congress. It's worth reading:

    http://www.hussmanfunds.com/wmc/wmc080922.htm

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:08 PM, bialdor wrote:

    They let WaMu fail, and now our stock account is down a few thousand....How are they deciding who gets saved and who doesn't?? Only the BIGGEST screw-ups get saved?

    What about us "little people"?? When do we get OUR bailout??

    The whole system stinks. I'm not even looking at our stocks today, because it's too upsetting. I just don't trust the government to do the right thing...Is it more scare tactics or is it real?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:11 PM, moneybags343 wrote:

    What caused the end of the American empire? Our perverse value of American exceptionalism. Every socialist. Or fascist. Dude, how can you be socialist and fascist at the same time? It seems like the majority of Americans would rather give up on their fellow Americans than lend a hand. Let the individual spirit rule the country. Dog eat dog. Free flowing capitalism at its best. Ayn Rand's objectivists rejoice!

    But where has it left us? A broken economy, a broken country. We are owned by China, our jobs are shipped to other 'more efficient' countries, the rich are becoming richer and the poor are becoming much much poorer. Is this capitalism? Who cares. What we need are solutions. Deep down I could care less about the -isms calling this bill socialist or fascist, non-American, like any of it matters. All of the people who are against the bill because 'we should let free markets run their course,' I want to know how the economy will run without any liquidity and four or five highly leveraged super-banks.

    Without this bill we are nothing. Because what is America without its perverse capitalism?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:24 PM, GoNuke wrote:

    Opposition to the rescue plan is a consequence of the electorate and the investment community' failure to understand some simple economics. This is a tragic day.

    People are acting from a place of anger not sense or understanding. All of the arguments that describe the economic situation accurately and illustrate the dire consequences of not passing this rescue have already been made, and largely ignored.

    Free markets require regulation to remain free. It is regulation that makes the market transparent and limits theft of investors money by management. It is a failure of regulation that caused this problem just as it was de-regulation that led to the S&L disaster.

    In 1929 we chose the wrong path, non-intervention, and people vowed never to make that mistake again. Unfortunately those people are dead now.

    The kids who grew up during the Great Depression are old, we don't pay much attention to them. We even ignored Warren Buffet who supported this rescue package. He understands the economy and what life is like during a Depression.

    So now we are going to make the same mistake again. People will lose their jobs and their homes. Pension funds will not be able to meet their obligations and a lot of excellent companies will go bankrupt.

    Economics is really a model of collective psychology. The markets are gripped by fear. This fear will probably result in irrational actions that will further damage the economy. The economy is what can save us but first we must save it.

    The national debt, as a portion of GDP is estimated to be 70% which is manageable. Without borrowing another cent debt as a percentage of GDP will rise as the GDP contracts. In other words adding this debt facility will probably improve the debt/GDP ratio.

    For you investors think of a national debt/GDP as being somewhat akin to the debt/equity ratio of a corporation.

    The $700 billion addition to the debt would be small relative to the $$ trillion that the Bush administration has already added. By comparison the Clinton administration added about 1 trillion.

    At the end of the Clinton administration debt/GDP was 57%

    If people are truly concerned about the debt they should elect Democrats. Since WWII Republican administrations have increased the debt at more than twice the rate that Democratic presidents have.

    Just track the national debt and GDP over the years on this chart:

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget/fy2006/pdf/hist.pdf

    Select the data during years when a Democrat has been president against years when a Republican has been president.

    It is all about the economy which is us.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:25 PM, mpatient wrote:

    I think it's so easy to sit and second guess everything that's been done in the last week or so, but where was all of this outrage a few years ago when anyone with half a brain could see this coming - enjoying their rapidly increasing investments. What about the "little people" - all those people who bought houses they knew they couldn't afford. I am very sympathetic to what is going on, but as the saying goes - if it seems to good to be true.... We all have responsibility in what happened, because we as Americans are basically apathetic to what is going on until it directly effects us. Where was all the pressure we should have been putting on our politicians when they were allowing all of the deregulations and subprime housing mortgages? I agree that a bandaid is a short term solution and generally just makes people feel better, but feeling better may make people a little more confident in their future - which in a capitalist society usually involves spending and investing money. And let's not forget who drives the market - it's people. And don't for one minute think the stock market wasn't controlled by people today.

    So, if the market/economy should be allowed to correct itself, it's going to have to be up to individual people to react responsibly and not allow the market to crash further. I don't think people have enough confidence right now in their livelihood or futures to sit this one out. I think the bill would have allowed a breathing period. Besides, the bill could be amended with a new administration just as easily as it could have been passed. Nothing, especially in government, is written in stone.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:31 PM, IGetKnockedDown wrote:

    I've lost about 80% of my net worth, with this economic 'crisis'. I'm quite upset, and am bitter towards the leaders of these companies who don't do what they are being paid to do. But I am at ease now that the House has shut down this Bill. I wish I never lost what I lost but it's a small price to pay to keep BIG GOVERNMENT medling more than they already do with this country. Yes, this too shall pass.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:33 PM, Bigbri43 wrote:

    We shouldn't bail them out. Republicans insisted that "free Market" must rule without Govt Intervention. With the passing of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act in 1999 coupled with Gramm Commodity Futures Modernization Act in 2000, here is the result of less oversight. Now they want, no demand government intervention? The top 75 CEO's compensation pkgs for 2007 totaled over 4 billion dollars. Need I say more?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:41 PM, cdssos wrote:

    I am incensed by Nancy Pelosi's comments today. To interject not only partisanship but hostile and hateful partisanship into such a monumentally serious issue for our country should be grounds for her removal from the position of Speaker.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:47 PM, robertf36009 wrote:

    We do need a basic realignment of our markets. We need to repeal the 1977 community reinvestment act and all of the stupidity that followed it in order to bring sanity back to the realestate markets. Well meaning as this legislation is it is misguided. Poor people can't afford to own homes which is why untill 1977 banks did not issue them mortgages. We need to reenact the Glass-Steagul act in all of it's glory for the exact reasons it was enacted in the first place. We need to reinstitute the up-tick rule for the reason mentioned above. We need to protect our fearless leaders from themselves by passing legislation forbidding elected officials from participating in the markets including realestate while in office and for three years after leaving office. We need to reduce the corporate income tax rate to twenty percent and close the loop holes in tose tax rules. We need to reduce the tax rates on capital gains, intrest income and other investment income to one tenth of one percent for a period of no less than two years. This "bailout" will only prolong our agony and not provide any real solutions just look what happened in Japan. They are still feeling the affects after eighteen years. Then look at Canada they are recovering nicely. Fool on! there will be bargains once again.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:49 PM, mjk0259 wrote:

    Hire 10,000 ex-KGB agents. Set up a nice camp in Siberia. Send all the Wall Street types that made more than $1,000,000 a year from this mortgage securitization there and have them held for ransom until we get as much back as we can.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:51 PM, opinion8 wrote:

    I have not heard of provisions to ensure lenders who seek federal funds under the bailout commit to set of criteria in future lending to eliminate the reasons for the problems creating the crisis in the first place:

    ARM mortgages should be eliminated.

    Subprime loans should be eliminated.

    Mortgage bundling and REITs should be eliminated.

    Perhaps all loans should be fixed interest and require down payments of at least ten percent or twenty percent.

    Realistic loan qualification criteria should be used to determine the maximum loan amount based on borrowers current earnings and obligations.

    Borrowers' credit ratings should also be required to determine maximum loan amounts.

    Verification of employment should also be required.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 6:52 PM, DWickizer wrote:

    Besides the law of supply and demand, there is another law, an immutable law, that I have continued to observe over the past 50 years of my life: The law of sowing and reaping. When one sows corn, they shouldn't expect to harvest peas. When one sows squash seeds, they shouldn't expect tomatoes. How is it then, that folks continue to sow greed and debt, not proper stewardship, and expect long term wealth and prosperity.

    We are now reaping what we have sown. Sowing more debt ($700b) to put a new patch on that old wineskin, is just going to make matters much worse in the long run. Oh, it may provide some short term relief, but in the long run it will really hurt our future generations. It will also reward the greed and incompetency inherent in the current economic system, as well as serve as a slap in the face to many Americans who have been faithful stewards, who have saved, and who have not run up huge debt.

    It is right for people to be concerned about the collapse of our economic system, similar to what happened in 1929. And why not? We, like idiots, have failed to heed the lessons of history and have made the same mistakes as before: We have allowed banks, insurance companies and investment brokers to effectively meld together in the same incestuous relationships as before. They in turn have invested in highly speculative and risky investments and loans. We were not content, as investors, to be partial owners in companies we believe in (i.e., stocks and bonds). We had to bring betting to Wall Street as well (futures, options, spreads, hedge funds, short selling, margin accounts, etc.).

    Our government collectively and we individually, must turn back to sound principles of financial stewardship. Those principles include living within our means, and sound investing, not wild speculation. I hope it is not too late.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:01 PM, anotherjames wrote:

    Wasn't it the demise of a bloated Freddie and Fannie that got us spiraling into this mess?

    So why is our constant solution to government errors more government?

    Why stop with just the bailout? Why not just go all the way? Give it all to Washington. Everything. If the federal givernment know what's best, then what are we waiting for?

    We can make our own decisions. Even the bad ones.

    It is a sad day for the United States when the Speaker and the President want to literally buy our liberty.

    Please, no sale.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:07 PM, jazarneb wrote:

    Some kind of bill needs to pass but I dont think ceo's should get any golden parachuts AND I also believe the failed mortgages should all be forclosed on no matter how sad the story so we can get out of this mess the sooner the better. And Congress should put politics aside, quit pointing the fingers of blame and get to work. And I blame the 24 hour news coverage of breathlessly reporting how the sky is falling and also pointing fingers of blame and in general causing widespread panic.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:17 PM, NuclearElvis wrote:

    I disagreed with the bailout and applaud the Congress voting it down. I had written my congressman, Steve Chabot, to tell him specifically that I was against the bailout and that it amounted to corporate welfare. The people are overwhelmingly against this legislation! This is NO SURPRISE, and anyone calling this a "failure" is flat wrong, the people have spoken. It was a SUCCESS to vote this down.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:20 PM, zerozero3 wrote:

    ha, ha, ha, I am as mad as hell and cannot take anymore. Please join me in a bottle of virtual champagne as we watch Main Street burn. Burn baby burn! The 60s have really caught up with us! Watch as the poor (you, dear reader) march in the streets and line up for soup.

    I cannot begin to understand how Main Street manages their money (they will not have any soon anyway, so that is a moot point). I am Main Street, retired. I placed a nice chunk of change in I-Bonds and T-Bills when I retired. Remember that 5-year plan the MF-RYR suggested??? I can wait it out.

    A lot of Main Street will find a bleak / black Thanksgiving and Christmas. Too bad; they encouraged their representatives to obey them. Hah! probably the first time the reps ever did that. Chicken hearts.. they are supposed to represent the best interest of their community, not spineless obedience. The mob is not intelligent.

    We asked for a vote of confidence and got it.... Major newspapers should follow the headlines in England when a PM goes down. "A VOTE OF NO CONFIDENCE".

    BTW, thank-you Motley Fool for being there when I needed you. I hope the recovery does not really take that 5-years. I grew up very poor and was happy for that cup of soup per day, but do not want to do that again.

    P.S. I read those 100+pages... did anyone else?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:23 PM, Buffal0Bill wrote:

    The Congress doesn't get it. I believe that this problem was caused by government more than Wall Street. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac at the direction of the federal government guaranteed unwise loans to uncreditworthy people and sold them to Wall Street with an implicit, if not stated, guarantee. As I listen to the Speaker and others berate Wall Street greed and Bush deregulation as the culprits, I cringe. Any solution whose first step is not the dissolution of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac only continues the problem. Propose a solution that respects free market capitalism, and I'll be willing to listen. The current bailout plan simply kicks the can down the road.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:26 PM, JerryCaldwell wrote:

    I know this is off topic and irreverent, maybe disrespectful, but wouldn't it have been funny if the DJI ended down by 666 instead of 777. The Christian right would freak.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:41 PM, Pmccorm wrote:

    zerozero3,

    You are genius. Reading the comments here makes me realize how dumb our country really is. I only hope those on the hill are smarter then the majority of their constituents, come to a compromise and get something passed. History is a brutal master and all those who do not understand it will repeat it.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:43 PM, JayMoe wrote:

    Here's one of the things that bothers me about the bailout. We are told that the taxpayers will get their dime back and maybe interest on their dime when the houses bought under the mortgage bailout are sold in the future. Homes on which mortgages have been foreclosed are probably setting empty. What will an empty house, with no active utilities, no security system (copper pipes, fixtures, etc. of some have been removed by thiefs), no pest control, no house or yard maintenance and subject to vandalism be worth when the time comes to sell it ? Maybe, only a nickel will be the return on a this dime.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 7:46 PM, thehooch wrote:

    You know what, I went by my credit union today and spoke with one of the senior loan officers. I asked her how this proposed bailout would affect her bank and she told me if anything, it might hurt business a little. What with all of these born again investment banks, being allowed to change into commercial banks. They'll be competing with the existing commercial banks and credit unions for depositors.

    My two cents worth:

    The last people I would have confidence in to find a workable solution to this economic problem in our country, is the same people who created the problem to begin with!

    You can't tell me Paulson and Bernake couldn't see this balloon inflating two years ago! But you know what, if they really did not know, how much confidence does that inspire?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:03 PM, dwscho wrote:

    I believe some help from Washington is necessary but, I believe this bill wasn't a good solution. There were other ideas being floated which should have been given consideration before a bill of this magnitude and scope was thrown in front of the House with essentially a day or two to make a thoughtful analysis and decision. It seems to me too much like the typical government response which is quick to push through a solution, often times not achieving the desired outcome. I know the markets are extremely volatile and facing tremendous pressure but, I think taking another week to develop a sound plan is in our country's best interests. Besides, I think it was irresponsible to place so much authority in the hands of the Treasury even with the oversight they proposed. $700 billion would disappear quickly and they would be back to the well for more. A government/Wall Street versus purely taxpayer solution is necessary. I also don't think it helped to have the Speaker of the House, Nancy P come out and blame the whole mess on Bush and the Republicans immediately before the vote particularly when the Democrats continue to deny any responsibility for their actions which surely contributed to this mess. It is a bi-partisan mess and the Speaker as well as the other Democratic leaders need to acknowledge that and get politics out of the picture for the good of the country. I believe the post mortem will show who the culprits are and then we taxpayers need to kick them to the curb. It's time for our elected representatives to remember who put them there and who can kick them out. We need a comprehensive bi-partisan government and Wall Street solution. Seems like Wall Street feels the taxpayers own the problem. I have lost a lot of money in this environment but, I will not sell my soul to have the government adopt a plan which cause my grandchildren to face the burdens of paying off the national debt for the irresponsible actions of our generation. We can do better than that terrible bill. Let's get it done.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:19 PM, uaford wrote:

    People... Do you want to go thru years of pain just to teach these guys a lesson, or protect what you have and at least have a chance to avoid another great depression (which would be much more brutal and violent then 29) ???

    Call your congressman and asked them to get this bill thru... Problem is, most of the folks that are against it have no real investments to worry about, or concept of the way things work.. Combine that with an election year, and all I can say is get ready for all heck to break lose...

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:19 PM, richman1211 wrote:

    I was against the bill as it stood - I think the republican provisions/alternatives will make it pass-able - by Republicans anyway - lol. Ding. Round 2

    Pelosi and Frank were disgracefull.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:25 PM, UrMajesty wrote:

    Short and sweet this was a total B@#% S*+% job on the part of the Republican party ( and some Democrats too). They are playing politics because they are worried about how this will look to their constituents and possibly put their seats in the house in jeopardy. If they were REALLY concerned about "Mr. and Mrs. Mainstreet" SOMETHING would have been done to stop the bleeding and then make changes later. They just keep saying It's socialism for the rich, that the people don't want this and I am not going to let them down. Guess what guys NOBODY wants to waste more than HALF A BILLON dollars covering the behinds of yours higher income friends who led us down the road to oblivion! But unfortunately for us, the people you won't let down, have been let down by you. You're keeping us in the dark about what the use of that money will really do...keep avg. joe financially alive becaue as we all know Mr and Mrs Mainstreet is always put in the forefront of crusades but are always crucified when it's all over!!! The Mainstreets loose no matter what action is taken because the rich get richer and the poor get poorer but the poor don't have to go down in oblivion. But why should you care, you have you're rich friends to help bail you out!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:29 PM, brwn8484 wrote:

    What are the details of this plan?

    i.e - what fiscal controls to help out taxpayers?

    - how will we (taxpayers) be compensated if plan works?

    - what will prevent leaders from scamming us again?

    - what protections will be in place to prevent good-old-boy system as it is currently being used in politics and wall street

    - will greased palms get preferential treatment as is current practice on wall street and Washington?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:42 PM, candaddio wrote:

    Warren Buffet once said "I'd rather be generally right, than precisely wrong." The bill may not have been perfect, but in voting it down, I'm reminded of the phrase "cutting off your nose to spite your face". God help America.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:51 PM, robertf36009 wrote:

    uaford: greetings. Don't be fooled again the sky isn't falling. check with your local banker the lending window is open. However they only loan money to people with a reasonable expectation of being repaid. urMajesty your argument is a travesty Jimmy carter started this. Bill Clinton accelerated it and none of our fearless leaders have had the guts to deal with it. Just like Medicare and Social security we have to have a crises for reasonable change to happen. This "Bailout is a bad idea built on fear. When the big banks which were exposed to bad paper finish failing and have been purchased by well funded institutions like Wells Fargo (WB) thier lending windows will be open again also, Fool on.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:51 PM, Namelesshero wrote:

    Here is my suggestion:

    The people who were working in the finance sector during 2003 till now who got big bonus, a portion of those bonus should become tax debit. And IRS will submit those money for the bailout plan. That would help a lot. Especially those CEO/CFO/CXO, they are responsible for this mess, they took millions out but left billion bills to the public, does this make sense?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 8:53 PM, Namelesshero wrote:

    Plus those real estate brokers, agents, they should give out their earnings. Also those people flipping real estates and made money during that period should pay more tax as well.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:04 PM, SRVENK wrote:

    There is madness going on all around. The US system is working. The people's representatives are representing the people. Why is everyone complaining?

    I hear everyone talk about how the whole system is going to collapse if this bill is not passed. I still think haste makes waste. Let the truth come out.

    One person who spoke something I liked so far is Bill Gross. He talked about assessing the fair value of each instrument, and then determining the value it is all worth. I think if we just get an idea of the correct value of the security instruments involved in this mess, then everyone will be better served, and even some investors may actually come forward and just invest in it.

    On the flip side, no one is talking about what to do with the money, if the Paulson plan creates unusual returns for the tax-payers down the line.

    So, let us just begin a process of proper calculation, and stop guessing. Half fear and half greed is what is continuing to exacerbate this whole thing.

    Another way to look at it is if a stock certificate is given to every resident of USA, then at $2000/- per person it will equal 700 billion. Something to think about! (Assuming 350 million residents)

    Let the calculations begin....

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:06 PM, OKlady8 wrote:

    The three men largely responsible for this mess are now advisors to Obama. They were paid billions of dollar hen they left their positions. Why not have them kick those dollars back to those companies?

    OKlady

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:07 PM, brwn8484 wrote:

    You all sound like politicians.....

    Robert Kiyosaki said in a recent column..

    If you want to know why the towers of American capitalism are crumbling, I recommend reading "The Creature from Jekyll Island" by G. Edward Griffin. It's not an easy book to find, but once you start reading it's to put down. In fact, in many ways it's a murder mystery about the financial "murder" of the middle class.

    A very important lesson in the book is how political leaders use financial spin to deceive the public. The very, very rich use the system to legally steal from the rest of us by appealing to our sense of patriotism. When our leaders say, "We're bailing out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac because we want to protect the American people," they really mean "We're saving our rich friends."

    All the bankers and politicians have to do is wave the red, white, and blue, play a few bars of "Yankee Doodle," and the masses get teary-eyed and pledge greater allegiance to legalized robbery. Yes, it's true that ignorance is bliss -- but ignorance is also expensive, and it cost us our freedom.

    Freedom at Peril

    A bailout can be different things. First, printing more money is a kind of bailout that leads to higher inflation. Rather than protecting people, it makes life for the poor and middle class more expensive. The other kind of bailout is protection for our rich and incompetent friends. If you or I fail at business, we fail. If we cheat and fail, we go to jail. But if you're rich and politically connected, your incompetence may be protected by a government bailout.

    As a former Marine and a Vietnam War veteran, it saddens me to see some of the freedoms I thought I went to war to protect being stolen from us by bankers and politicians. Unfortunately, few Americans know the difference between the words "nationalize" and "socialize." Socialize means we turn more of our personal powers over to Big Brother, not free enterprise. It means we as a people grow weaker and need a higher power -- the same power that got us into this mess -- to protect us.

    In short, when the towers of Fannie, Freddie, Merrill, Lehman, and AIG came crashing down, more came down than just money. What we're losing is the very freedom this country was founded on, and what most of the world yearns for.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:20 PM, robertf36009 wrote:

    uaford: greetings. Don't be fooled again the sky isn't falling. check with your local banker the lending window is open. However they only loan money to people with a reasonable expectation of being repaid. urMajesty your argument is a travesty Jimmy carter started this. Bill Clinton accelerated it and none of our fearless leaders have had the guts to deal with it. Just like Medicare and Social security we have to have a crises for reasonable change to happen. This "Bailout is a bad idea built on fear. When the big banks which were exposed to bad paper finish failing and have been purchased by well funded institutions like Wells Fargo (WB) thier lending windows will be open again also, Fool on.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:27 PM, 123go100 wrote:

    good start. some congress people have finally listened to voters. hope it goes on.this correction needed. leave it continue. will it hurt? you bet. my 401 has taken a hit, but listening to the fools, i did move it around and settled for small gains and small pains. need no bailout but need respectful regulation. i know thats asking for a lot, but maybe there are a few brave congress people still out there. what scares me, is the top fool seems shaky.just hang on we will get through this. on the up side--this should slow down the junk mail credit card mailings. remember-NO BAIL OUT

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:32 PM, GSOJ wrote:

    I don't think we should sit back and do nothing, however much better can be done with 700 bln than buying trash from banks. I think the Fed/FDIC are going the right thing by helping speed up buyout/takeovers that are naturally (or slightly pushed into) happening. This way, the tax payers as you and I are not on the hook for such a large amount, the potential for success is much higher, and it keeps the markets somewhat moving and instill some confidence that there are some banks out there after all that can take care of themselves. As a result we will be left with the sturdiest of institutions, who ever they may be.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:33 PM, jbpinkocommie wrote:

    I love to hear these politicians spout how they need to protect the American Taxpayer, yet they were so willing to pour more down the rat hole of Iraq!! That has not helped the economy in the last five years.

    However the plan in some form is necessary "bad tasting" medicine. There is a need to insure the liquidity of the financial system. I like the idea of Taxpayer ownership and warrants in these businesses that are assisted by the US Government. Also protection for homeowners and mortgage holders who were scammed into these mortgages.

    I have ownership in a war that I didn't want, so give me ownership in a bailout that doesn't thrill me.

    It would be nice to make the scoundrels pay but let us not "cut off our nose to spite our face."

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:33 PM, billbailoutbill wrote:

    The President and his administration sounds like a used car dealer, "This is the last one we have, buy it today, tomorrow the price goes up, someone will buy it if you don't, hurry and give me a Trillion, This is not a Monarchy and etc."

    This problem was years in the making. "Read a Nation of Enrons" in the Motley Fool. I predicted this mess almost 5 years ago. And I am not an expert, why were so called experts so dumb ?.

    I am telling my Congressman to sharpen his pencil and get the best deal he can and don't listen to that used car dealer Paulson. And only vote for the Bailout Bill if absolutely necessary!!!!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:53 PM, justaplugger wrote:

    Your article suggests we must rely on and aid those who you admit have been operating with a "blatant amount of greed" for years! Yes, you are truly a fool. Seems to me the only ones running in fear are the big gamblers of the Wall Street who suddenly find them selves at the losing end of the chain letter they created.

    Yes, some large taxpayer investment is needed but I suggest it bypasses the greedy middlemen (and women) and take it direct to those USA industries and States for job creation that upgrades our industry, infrastructure, energy and technology systems.

    Seems to me some pain even significant pain is required to really get us on the right track for the long term and I believe we Americans can do it. And yes my accounts took a significant hit today also, but I'm confident the future will be brighter if we avoid the quick fix which will just postpone things and further encourage the excesses and foolishness.

    Let the big boys learn a lesson, loose some of their power over the system and maybe they will be less inclined to try to manipulate it in the future.

    Reality check is required and foundation building or rather rebuilding is needed.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:56 PM, rivertonjoe wrote:

    Those in government who were responsible for the fannie and freddie fiasco now want to own more of our economy. The bill should have failed and thank God it did.

    I do like the Newt Gingrich plan of companies buying insurance from the govt that would kick in after a sizable chunk of the loss is paid for buy the company who holds the mortages.

    That keeps the pols out of it.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:59 PM, lowfiron wrote:

    I did not read all of the above so I might be reaffirming someone who said it already.

    The bill-bailout was the best they could come up with. It was worth putting into action. Some people are not working hard enough to make it happen.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 9:59 PM, wax wrote:

    From the Kahuna board:

    I am neither a Republican nor a Democrat; I am an investor.

    I invest in what I was taught long ago were free markets. Markets that worked equally for all regardless of political leanings provided that consideration and understanding were given to what was being invested in.

    If I did my due diligence, if I took the time to understand how the business I was investing in made it's money, I was taught that there was a very good probability that my efforts would be well rewarded over time.

    I have found that in 25+ years of investing my hard earned money, what I was taught was exactly correct.

    I was also taught that lack of due diligence in selecting an investment would result in loss of my hard earned capital. The tech bubble bursting in 2000 reminded me just how true those teaching were.

    What the government has attempted to do with this bailout is keep investors from focusing on the risk, by highlighting only what they called a reward. The markets seemed to believe what the government was saying.

    Investors on the other hand, regardless of political persuasion, thought what the government was saying was a lie.

    Today, investors prevailed. Today, investors were able to convince those they elect, that believe it or not, they knew better. And I for one am extremely proud that I can call myself an investor.

    And as far as know, my political affiliation never came in to play.

    Wax

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:01 PM, robertf36009 wrote:

    I spent twenty years in the army some of it in Iraq. Regardless of your opinion of that war even it presented investment opportunities if you like defense stocks. I would rather leverage my pension and make my own investments than buy up bad paper at the direction of the federal government thank you very much. I really don't care about punishing the guilty. I just don't want to reward them. I don't want my government representatives to defend the down trodden I just want them to do their job which is growing the economy through good fiscal policy IE not forcing financial institutions into bad loans. Their other responsibility is protecting this country from all enemies foreign or domestic. Which brings us back to defense stocks. Lockheed Martin on sale this week.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:03 PM, canadian1eh wrote:

    As a Canadian investor I worry about the state of the US and the global impact. Banks not only in the US are going broke but around the world. We have a very regulated banking system but with all of this fall out, it seems to have served us well.

    There is a lot of debate over this bill but has anyone considered what may happen with foreign ownership? Canadian banks and insurance companies have been purchasing companies in the US for awhile. Most recent, Manulife's purchase of John Hancock. If this fall out of banks continues don't you think foreign companies will be buying your banks on a fire sale. I think your government needs to do something or your financial institutions will become Chinese or Canadian. I am assuming from everything I have read that is not a good thing for Americans. The rest of the world is watching.

    Has anyone read the panic of 1907 and the start of the federal reserve? Sounds like today?

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:05 PM, macrophyllum wrote:

    Today has been a great day for the American people. They spoke out to their representatives and the representatives listened. This is no "failure", it a success. We don't need a bailout, it would just be a patch balloon trying to deflate. We need a reboot and we need trust worthy leadership in place to help direct the reboot process.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:10 PM, macrophyllum wrote:

    I just read some other MF articles about this bailout and I have to say, I've lost a lot of faith in their judgement. They are shaking by the boots because their whole livelihood and investment (mini) empire relies on the idea that stocks are great and will continue to go up and up. Unfortunately, they need to contract now and a bailout will help. The market always wins, always, and it is winning now and we the people who don't like the bailout see this! No bailout, ever. Let the market correct itself.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:19 PM, therapyneeded wrote:

    Although, there is not one person in this country who wants to see a "Bailout plan" pass, unfortunately IT needs to be done immediately!! The bill today needs to be revised, and must include a mortgage clause; where action will be reflected in the language, ex. "shall" instead of "may", etc.

    People, make the distinction, this is to give a shot in the arm to our financial system not just lower Manhattan, if this was the case there would be minimal discussion.

    Everyone is saying this is the fault of those who borrowed more than they could and that home loans should be restrictive as a result. Although, there are a lot of people who did this there are also those who did not.

    Example of this, one couple I know have owned their home for 11yrs without a skipped payment, ever. 15 yrs at the same job and in 2006 he was laid off, once back on their feet, sought to re-fi at a lower rate; enter unethical broker with the bait and switch (anyone who tells me they have actually read the entire 2 inches of paperwork at closing is full of it), illness happened, after wiping out their six months emergency money this couple fell behind several months;they made a deal with the mortgage co. 1 yr later and over $36,000 in payments made ( paying up to 3,000, a month from original 2,000.00 WITHOUT any modification in place because he was repeatedly refused(no reason given), even though the company knew he could not keep these payments forever) ; they were still told foreclosure was happening. Whose fault is this?, the man who owned the house for 11 yrs and got caught up in a life situation and after fighting hard, financially was able to go forward or the mortgage company that out of unethical greed continued to fleece, preventing the homeowner from staying in his home paying thereby contributing to this mess by adding another foreclosure.

    Before you speak remember that unless you OWN your home outright, Lay-off's, illness, hell your portfolio or 401K can be deflated to nothing, and then you could be on the other side.There are many cases out there just like this one, some people in their homes 15yrs before a bad re-fi.

    Let's stop having a pity party and finger pointing to the people that have already suffered by having their investments, homes gone.

    There is PLENTY of blame to go around -Wall Street, Washington, and Main Street

    It's time to look at the alternatives and there are some out there, example having the FDIC insure up to 1 billion so as to have more small business and corporations put their money in the banks, etc. Time to get the government in there and get a more balanced bill put together in conjunction with the alternatives to get the much needed LIQUIDITY out there!

    I am not a financial expert but a small business owner, and even to me it is evident that if something is not done FAST, every person on this board who has been so self righteous, will indeed become of a victim themselves in one way or another. How? Payrolls may not be met (mostly small business), credit for merchandise WILL NOT be given (again, small business),lay-off's(both big & small business),that equity line of credit you have, will shrink by the bank (already happening)etc. do I really need to paint a picture? THINK about it.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:30 PM, Mr5StarFool wrote:

    I love Ben Stein! Common sense seems to be a rarity when steeped in greedy political power-grab. -Relieve the scammed, distressed home owners by providing an immediate fixed, fair affordable rate on the original purchase price. Disregard their recent credit score declines resulting from predatory hikes.They will be able to pay the affordable rate. The foreclosures will cease. The financial institutions will, as a result, recover. Next regulate all financial institutions to enforce fair play, just as the overhead cameras watch the card sharks in Vegas. If it's got to be a shark infested Vegas financial world, then it needs to be regulated accordingly. -Peace

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:37 PM, r0b50 wrote:

    Not for nothing, but what happened to the model FDR put in place to buy up the forclosed homes???

    With 700Bil you could buy 4.6 MILLION HOMES AT THE MEDIAN PRICE OF HOMES TODAY!!!!!!

    Do you think that putting a floor under the home prices would alllow the banks to stop hemmoraging money and losses???

    Help the people, not the banks.

    Most of us didn't make stupid decission and then expect to be bailed out by someone else.

    Screw the lobbists and the Gov that listens to them!

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:38 PM, robertf36009 wrote:

    That is exactly the point! Any "bailout" will have to include safeguards against this happening again. Remember the Glass-Steagul act? Politicians should not be permitted to make their own investments. Their assets should go into a blind trust managed by someone they don't know. Then they wouldn't know what to manipulate to line their pockets. In the words of Don Henley we are dealing with a "whole new breed of men without souls.". They will sacrifice their constituents while swearing that they are working on their behalf.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:46 PM, burneb43 wrote:

    Yes. Sorry, but I'm with the JAIL not BAIL crowd this time, even tho it puts me with an unsavory group of boneheads(House Republicans).

    We DO need some Fed assistance plan here, and any effective one will surely lose the taxpayers some money. But $700 billion? We can do much better than this plan, hastily hatched and heavily influenced by those responsible for the problem..

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:47 PM, mtremodeler wrote:

    As an independent housing contractor in Montana I fully understand the desire to "put a floor under the falling housing market." But as a responsible person, I put my own home purchase on hold because it didn't take a genius to know that the inflated market couldn't last. I like most others am angry. Housing prices in this market are still overly inflated. I honestly belive that further correction is needed. But causing a DEPRESSION is not going to help anyone. We need a plan to establish an orderly way to get these bad investments "marked to market" that doesn't instantly collapse the economy. Any plan that establishes a value that does not "eventually" reflect free market prices will only drag out the problem. But a plan that artificially establishes prices that will stableize the financil stuctures TEMPORARILY is needed now. If we want to wait and see "how low can the DOW go" we will be standing on our idelogical soap boxes in the soup line! Hold your nose, support the plan and make sure that the oversight mechanisms are adequate to ensure that the final result will be a return to transparent, free markets, with adequate regulations on capital reserves.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 10:58 PM, sb101cu wrote:

    See the movie http://www.iousathemovie.com, where the bi-partisan law makers and bankers have given the prognosis if not the diagnosis of things to come. Wait till 2040, when the social security and medicare goes bust. The financial crisis of today,in USA,is just the TIP of the iceberg. It is an irony, that the family unit (in USA) over the last three decade has gone SMALLER and the houses have gone BIGGER. Something to think about...

    The world is getting "flatter", and USA is losing is technological edge in the information age. The number of PHD'S of native citizens in computer science is is getting smaller, and those foreigners who do earn their PHD'S here are going back home or to Europe. The " BRAIN DRAIN" is more important than the "FINANCIAL DRAIN" in the longer term perspective, as Adam Smith said in "The wealth of the Nations", it is the people, the quality of human capital that is COMPARATIVELY more important than financial capital and political capital. Thanks to Bush., the political capital has gone down the drain in the international community.

    I would love to hear the comments of others. Thanks

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:00 PM, therapyneeded wrote:

    Thank you robertf36009 and r0b50!

    This is exactly what I meant - okay so my post was long enough.

    Imagine if all of your safety nets were gone, job, health,etc This new bill needs to have protections in place,warrants,equity and help for the common man.

    To say let the market correct itself is truly not looking at the full scope of the situation.

    Mr5StarFool...amen!

    The effects of today are already causing widening cracks in the world markets...People did you forget that in today's market we are all connected globally?

    Capitol Hill will meet on Thursday (a little late in this fool's opinion), I hope that they realize that saving their butt (job) should not be the priorty but rather the welfare of the public who put them there...yeah, I know as if...

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:11 PM, Mr5StarFool wrote:

    Watching Newt tonight, articulate the idea to revert to sane home pricing (three year average) and the immediate influx of liquidity the market would realize as a result...and then flashing back to Nancy Pelosi this afternoon display her attempt at intelligence as the United States House Speaker...Are these two personalities the indicators of the collective intelligence quotient on each side of the isle?

    What allows a party to become so lost that it ends up selecting and tolerating such scattered, inferior representation? This is the same party that ran Newt out on a rail.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:14 PM, INsano12 wrote:

    It's such a relief for me to read that others have the same objections to this plan: It saves the hides of companies where the profits have ALREADY been reaped, and now they want us to save them, it has been put forward by Paulson(lol ex-CEO of Goldman Sachs) and there has been an intense amount of government agreement suddenly--all by rich congressmen and women who have 401ks....

    There is no party voting on this that doesn't have money in the market--it's so obviously messed up.

    It would have marked a huge, negative change in American economics--and I hate the current system as it is! As if corporate shares of taxes aren't already down to like 15% from 70% when they didn't own the government, now we're going to say that if they fail enough by avarice, we'll bail them out?

    On a gut level, when someone like Shrub gets on the idiot box and tries to scare everyone into thinking there aren't alternatives, it's obvious that someone is massively profiting somewhere from the lack of debate, discussion, and public knowledge--once perhaps what might have been called Democracy.

    Remember that concept?

    Now it's "Sign on the dotted line to approve the surgery, which will hopefully save your mother's life, although we guarantee nothing, you'd better do it out of fear for your own loss. Oh, and the surgeon will be drunk driver."

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:38 PM, ScottyJarhead wrote:

    I read many of my fellow fools comments. I’m sorry, but I have to really take issue with the idea the Capitalism will take it’s “natural course” and solve this enormous problem. If you honestly believe that NO government intervention in free market capitalism is the best way to manage our economy, then you must also believe that our government should ONLY run balanced budgets. Didn’t our government already disrupt the natural balance of our free market by pumping trillions of dollars of borrowed money into our economy over the past 28 years ? I see the bail out plan as a necessary evil. This entire situation is the unintended consequence of decades of excess. This is the final failure of Reganomics, it’s time for America to return to true fiscal conservatism.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:43 PM, McMomCPA wrote:

    Thank you, constituents all across the USA, for burning up the phone lines into the Capitol building today. It gives me a little more time to screen for companies with excellent cash positions whose shares have been made cheaper by this fiasco. C'mon, fellow Fools, who else smells opportunity? Cash-rich corporations already know The Rule that protects their shareholders: LIVE WITHIN YOUR MEANS... NO MATTER WHAT.

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:51 PM, ronpaul2008 wrote:

    Thankfully the bill did not pass today, however tomorrow is another day for the white house to twist arms.

    The true crisis is the pending collapse of the fiat dollar system that emerged after the breakdown of the Bretton Woods agreement in 1971.

    For 37 years the world built a financial system based on the dollar as the reserve currency of the world in an attempt to make the dollar serve as the new standard of value. However since 1971, the dollar has had no intrinsic value, as it is not tied to gold.

    The dollar is simply a fiat currency, which has fluctuated in value on a daily, if not hourly, bias. This worked to some degree until the market realized that too much debt and malinvestment existed and a correction was required

    Because of our economic and military strength, compared to other countries, trust in America’s currency lasted longer than deserved. This resulted in the biggest worldwide economic distortion in all of history. The problem is much bigger than the fears of a temporary decline on Wall Street if the bailout is not agreed to.

    RP

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:57 PM, dguttman wrote:

    Marry in haste repent in leasure, the bill needs to be throughall vetted before passage. To help solve the current crisis the congress needs to come out with a statement that they are commited to working to solve the crisis but that they will not be rushed into a foolhardy bill.

    1. The bill should pay for itself by leaving a small fee on each transaction on wall street.

    2. Executive pay (including perks and options need to limited) if they can't be limited then tax the sh*t out of them.

    3. Capital Gains should be taxed at the same rate as ordinary income not cut as some suggest.

    4. Neither Paulson nor Bernache should be in charge, and there should be oversight.

    5. The Bankruptcy bill should exclude people who were wiped out for medical causes (loss of insurance shouldn't mean loss of home)

    6. Give time for the bill to vetted in public

    7. Dole out the money $100 billion at a time not all $700 + billion, that way if the bill is a complete failure we don't throw away all the money at once

  • Report this Comment On September 29, 2008, at 11:59 PM, NWStockman wrote:

    Who wants to prop up Wall Street and the financial markets if they got us into this mess? I do. I think most Americans could benefit from a little history lesson regarding the Roaring 20's followed by the Great Depression. Wealth doesn't trickle down very effectively, but poverty does. If the financial markets freeze up for an extended period of time, go to the library and check out The Grapes of Wrath. Steinbeck may not have known he wrote a "How to" book, but that's our future without this plan.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 12:01 AM, YRDOG wrote:

    This day was how the limited form of democracy that this county has works.. John Q Citizen got off his recliner and actually emailed in or called their congressperson and some of them actully listened to what was said, the American people are about to get wacked by a railroad. Round One of the bailout went down in flames, and George Bush looks like a sage. Last week he was quoted as saying, "this sucker could go down" Today it did... Maybe this should be the endpoint of Milton Friedmann inspired deregulated Reganomics passed along with the help of Alan Greenspan and Bill Clinton. Today should be an example of where this all leads...

    The bailout never even addresses the crux of the financial meltdown...quantitative derivatives

    The real destruction of the financial markets came when quantitative derivatives were allowed to flourish with no real regulation. The Financial community developed instruments from these derivatives that they themselves could not even value. Nothing in the current bailout package addressed this problem. So if Round 2 is passed without addressing the root cause, it will occur again. A very simple way to start controlling these derivatives is to tax them. Let the Treasury take in money from these instruments. With only a 0.1% tax, this would have raised 350 billion in taxes from the people who can afford to pay (the financial community). Thats right, there are estimated to be about 350 trillion in derivatives in the market. Plus, by having to register the derivatives, there would be much more transparency in what is currently back room dealing.

    By winning Round One and defeating the bailout, Congress is now in a position of power against the financial power brokers. Now is the time to demand real reform so that these "smartest men in the room" cannot get back to doing this again to the country.

    Yankee Running Dog

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 12:33 AM, robertf36009 wrote:

    Yankee Running Dog: Greetings. Derivatives were originally an instrument to defray the risk of bad mortgage loans forced by bad legislation. Then greed set in and they were used to "cook the books.". They became a shell game of bad paper until it all collapsed like a house of cards. Rationally we have to stop lending money to people and institutions who we know can't repay the loans. Can you say Country wide finance?

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 1:13 AM, Sababull wrote:

    For the past 72 hours I have heard no less than seven times from representatives of both parties that me, the average American, am simply not intelligent enough to understand the need for a bailout. In marketing, if you show an ad to someone five to seven times they will be impacted by the ad. I can now confirm my belief that I am just too dumb to understand the need for a bailout.

    Unfortunately, this probably means that I was too dumb to vote for the correct candidate during the last election. This means the current members of Congress were obviously the wrong choices, voted in by the colossally stupid, and will need to be replaced at the next opportunity. This is confirmed by the fact that none of these distinguished individuals were smart enough to figure out, four years or 4 months ago, that a crisis was looming. I guess some of them were simply too busy calling their respective mortgage company looking for a little special treatment (I took a couple of the calls) and it never dawned upon them that maybe their constituents were facing the same problems.

    I hope each of my fellow morons (and fools) enjoyed watching 434 House members sweat as much as I did today. If you missed all the compliments about your intelligence, head on over to CSPAN online and catch the replay. It was nice to see them fear for THEIR jobs.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 1:59 AM, ThanksForNothing wrote:

    I'm a 30 something who got a college degree because "you have to get a college degree" was rammed down my throat. Then couldn't find a manufacturing job to use it with, watched as my father worked for a major nameless Fortune 100 company for 35 yrs. with perfect attendance get forced into "early retirement" 4 months before he was going to go anyway, bought a decent house within my budget, paid my bills, and stayed away from credit card debt.

    I've watched as my state taxed me to death, my county taxed my property to death, and my city explode with ungodly amounts of new houses that no one could figure out how anyone could afford.

    My current job does not have a 401K and what modest amount I did have in a previous 401 did nothing but shrink into what amounts to a joke. No health benfits either, but I pay my own like a responsible adult. I've given up on a vacation to anywhere other than within a 200 mile radius for maybe a weekend because yes, that's right, I like to pay my bills.

    Wow, now I won't be able to go buy that new car or a room full of new furniture?? No plasma TV in the bedroom either?

    All I can say is good. Let them all tank. The only thing I'm bitter about is the idiots in Washington DC will still be there while the rest of us suck on it.

    Oh well, at least when I'm 80 and driving my old beater from my 2nd job as a Wal-Mart greeter back to my worthless house I'll have Social Security to look forward to. Hey,...wait a minute...

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 2:20 AM, punchy101 wrote:

    Why is there this relentless demand that the bill be passed NOW?

    The more I read on the crises, the more I come to realize that nobody appears to understand the whole situation. More facets of the problem come into view everyday. There are aspects of it that are so obscured that it is impossible to get a good idea of its totality. I think even Mr. Buffet might be taking an educated guess.

    A more in depth examination of the problem is needed before we understand where the real problems are. Unfortunately it may take some time for the facts to become obvious. Pausing before we act may be painful but it may be the prudent choice over time.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 2:29 AM, Computerjockey wrote:

    To all of you opposed:

    I hope you enjoy standing in line with the other 999 people when your only option for employment is the single opening for Greeter at your local Wal-Mart. Oh you already have a job? You may have a job today, but are really arrogant enough to believe that you will a year from now?

    Some people are rich enough to handle being unemployed for 5 or 6 years, can you afford to be unemployed for that long?

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 4:06 AM, Bill33308 wrote:

    Congress was wrong to fail to pass the legislation. However, it is easy to see why it did not pass due to the negative feedback to their congressmen by the American people. Most people just do not understand the consequences of inaction, in addition they are angry about the "fat cats" walking away, fired, with millions. Both of the above items can be fixed. Congress has power to break the contracts and bonus approval for the failed institutions. I'm sure some where in the regulatory framework this can be found. Given a failure here there is always the possibility to create a narrow tax provision that targets these people. Given an ongoing educational component and a strong stick on golden parachutes this bailout will be more acceptable to the American people.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 4:42 AM, DrFlashIII wrote:

    It seems to me like a lot of congressmen voted against this bill because a) an ingrained ideological opposition against anything that looks anything like the bogeyman socialism b) That the same congressmen have to answer to their voters shortly and the general public are labouring under the misapprehension that this is only going to affect Wall st 'Fat Cats' and most sadly c) it appears some votes were lost as a result of being 'insulted' by the speaker's speech against Republican economics. I live in the UK. Will you American's take a more pragmatic approach and pull your fingers out and fund this bill. It is not only your economy at stake here. Per the note above please take time to read about the monetarist view on the Great Depression (which led to the rise of Hitler and the 2nd World War).

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 4:54 AM, realitycheck13 wrote:

    JUST SAY NO! By Steve Kendall Thank god they didn't pass the "bailout" plan! Buying up all the bad mortgage backed securities from all these crazy ___ mortgage banks is ridiculous. So what if the market went down 777, so what if we lost $1.4 trillion in market value today.

    We're here to build the future folks, take the damn never ending money nipple out of....

    continued at -

    www.mortgagebreakdown.com

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 5:49 AM, mtracy9 wrote:

    Most of the no votes came from the Republican side -- the champions of deregulation. Deregulation can be a good thing within certain limits. However when banks are allowed to do stupid things like give morgages to people who have no job and little income, deregulation has obviously gone too far. What to do now? We all face a financial meltdown. The big money brokers who largely fund Congressional campaigns must make it clear, in no uncertain terms, that those members of Congress who voted against the bailout will not receive funds for their campaigns. If this happens, it shouldn't be too long before the 13 Congressional members needed to pass the bailout are brought to their senses.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 5:59 AM, RuffChaz wrote:

    When over $5 Trillion was lost in the Tech Bubble, did anyone get a bail out? Now you have a bunch of people who have decided not to pay their mortgages and walk away from their houses. And I'm supposed to ante up so they can keep them? And I'm supposed to bail out a bunch of jerks who either underwrote the loans or bought a bunch of these crap instruments because the yield was going to be so great and even if the borrower did default the housing market was going to keep increasing forever. Well guess what? Tough luck people. Go out and get another job and make the damn payments. Suck it up. Cut your compensation and costs at the banks to survive. All of us "Rich Americans" Obama is always blabbing about have to work another ten years because of the tech bubble. We aint working another ten so that some jerk can mail his house keys to the bank and rent a place for half the cost. That's a load of bull*&^( and maybe just maybe the rest of you will figure that out.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 7:25 AM, brwn8484 wrote:

    You all sound like politicians.....

    Robert Kiyosaki said in a recent column..

    If you want to know why the towers of American capitalism are crumbling, I recommend reading "The Creature from Jekyll Island" by G. Edward Griffin. It's not an easy book to find, but once you start reading it's to put down. In fact, in many ways it's a murder mystery about the financial "murder" of the middle class.

    A very important lesson in the book is how political leaders use financial spin to deceive the public. The very, very rich use the system to legally steal from the rest of us by appealing to our sense of patriotism. When our leaders say, "We're bailing out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac because we want to protect the American people," they really mean "We're saving our rich friends."

    All the bankers and politicians have to do is wave the red, white, and blue, play a few bars of "Yankee Doodle," and the masses get teary-eyed and pledge greater allegiance to legalized robbery. Yes, it's true that ignorance is bliss -- but ignorance is also expensive, and it cost us our freedom.

    Freedom at Peril

    A bailout can be different things. First, printing more money is a kind of bailout that leads to higher inflation. Rather than protecting people, it makes life for the poor and middle class more expensive. The other kind of bailout is protection for our rich and incompetent friends. If you or I fail at business, we fail. If we cheat and fail, we go to jail. But if you're rich and politically connected, your incompetence may be protected by a government bailout.

    As a former Marine and a Vietnam War veteran, it saddens me to see some of the freedoms I thought I went to war to protect being stolen from us by bankers and politicians. Unfortunately, few Americans know the difference between the words "nationalize" and "socialize." Socialize means we turn more of our personal powers over to Big Brother, not free enterprise. It means we as a people grow weaker and need a higher power -- the same power that got us into this mess -- to protect us.

    In short, when the towers of Fannie, Freddie, Merrill, Lehman, and AIG came crashing down, more came down than just money. What we're losing is the very freedom this country was founded on, and what most of the world yearns for.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 7:25 AM, brwn8484 wrote:

    You all sound like politicians.....

    Robert Kiyosaki said in a recent column..

    If you want to know why the towers of American capitalism are crumbling, I recommend reading "The Creature from Jekyll Island" by G. Edward Griffin. It's not an easy book to find, but once you start reading it's to put down. In fact, in many ways it's a murder mystery about the financial "murder" of the middle class.

    A very important lesson in the book is how political leaders use financial spin to deceive the public. The very, very rich use the system to legally steal from the rest of us by appealing to our sense of patriotism. When our leaders say, "We're bailing out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac because we want to protect the American people," they really mean "We're saving our rich friends."

    All the bankers and politicians have to do is wave the red, white, and blue, play a few bars of "Yankee Doodle," and the masses get teary-eyed and pledge greater allegiance to legalized robbery. Yes, it's true that ignorance is bliss -- but ignorance is also expensive, and it cost us our freedom.

    Freedom at Peril

    A bailout can be different things. First, printing more money is a kind of bailout that leads to higher inflation. Rather than protecting people, it makes life for the poor and middle class more expensive. The other kind of bailout is protection for our rich and incompetent friends. If you or I fail at business, we fail. If we cheat and fail, we go to jail. But if you're rich and politically connected, your incompetence may be protected by a government bailout.

    As a former Marine and a Vietnam War veteran, it saddens me to see some of the freedoms I thought I went to war to protect being stolen from us by bankers and politicians. Unfortunately, few Americans know the difference between the words "nationalize" and "socialize." Socialize means we turn more of our personal powers over to Big Brother, not free enterprise. It means we as a people grow weaker and need a higher power -- the same power that got us into this mess -- to protect us.

    In short, when the towers of Fannie, Freddie, Merrill, Lehman, and AIG came crashing down, more came down than just money. What we're losing is the very freedom this country was founded on, and what most of the world yearns for.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 7:55 AM, johninc44 wrote:

    Our elected "boobs" couldn't get it right if it hit them like a pie in the face. Well, they're not all elected - some are appointed. If they don't so something, this will be the next "Great Dperession". This isn't a bailout of Wall Street - it's a bail out of our national of our financial system. When I listen to our leaders question whether we are in a recession, it is maddening since it is apparent to everyone else. But our current financial state borders on something more serious than recession. These boobs passed three rounds of tax legislation this year, almost none of which helps our economy recover (I know this because I am a tax attorney and have read the legislation). How many more financial institutions should fail before these boobs will do something for us? This year, we should "rock the vote" - remove almost every incumbent and get new people in office, because clearly the presently elected officials are out-of- touch and not working for us.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 8:24 AM, pooyie wrote:

    This bill is so full of pork it should never have allowed to be voted on but then that is the real nature of our problem. The politicians are politicking! Remove the capital gains tax, remove the mark to market accounting rules, Remove the hedge funds (So George Sorros cannot destroy our economy!) and stop the entitlements! The politicians coerced the banking and mortgage industries to make bad loans and the bankers saw the ability to make money on investments they knew were bad. And they got burned! The CEO's of these failed institutions should not be allowed to take their parachutes and retirement (and yes in this bill the current CEO's will get their parachutes, maybe not immediately but ultimately). Shame on the politicians for allowing ACORN and PUSH and the Rainbow Coalition, etc. to coerce the market! This is proof enough that Socialism will not work. This is the bitter pill our Free Market economy can not swallow. If we force it down we will choke on it. Possibly terminally!

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 8:32 AM, TheParadox wrote:

    the 700 billion since last oct hasn't worked...

    so lets just throw another 700 Billion?

    this plan is stupid. leave free markets alone... i'll take my "loss" happily knowing the market is free and fair.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 9:00 AM, addisonsm wrote:

    I find it interesting that the Fools who voted against the bill were predominately from states that receive significant subsidies, either directly for agricultural activities or in the form of more Federal aid than they sent to Washington in the form of taxes. If we are going to end the subsidies and bailouts, then lets end them all and let North and South Dakota fend for themselves. Let the big cities suffer equally in the form of reduced subsidies. End the transportation subsidies. Reduce the government back to the constitutional mandate of providing for a common defense and let the states, cities and towns fend for themselves.

    Of course we wouldn't have a chance of a policy for education, energy, transportation, national security, financial, public safety, or any other area. There are those that say we don't have a chance anyway, so why not.

    When the credit markets fail, then maybe the people who don't believe the financial assistance is needed will pick up an economics book and understand what the fuss is all about. In the mean time, they are presumably voting Libertarian, because that is where their beliefs lie.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 9:08 AM, LydiaWZ wrote:

    I would rather face the biggest, worst, longest, greatest depression than giving one cent to those who created the situation begin with.

    And I do not desire to have a king, I am perfectly happy to live in a democratic country.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 9:19 AM, robertf36009 wrote:

    Therein lies the biggest fallicy of this entire situation. Credit markets are not going to "Siez up.". They are waiting for their piece of the bail out pie. Once it becomes clear that no "Bail out." is forth coming they will begein to lend money again. They can't afford not to because there are other lending outlets that will be happy to lend at exorbitant intrest rates. Just because the politicians and their paid economists tell you some thing dosen't make it a fact. If this was really as bad as they want you to believe they wouldn't be loading this up with pork and partisanship. They would get down to the nuts and bolts to fix this problem. Until they actualy adress the issues that underlie the problems nothing should be done.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 9:20 AM, quibbledibble wrote:

    I would not think it wise to let politicians, who know not the subtleties of gold to make such decisions.

    I for one have not seen the legislation can anyone speak to this, who has seen it.

    Would you buy a stock not knowing what assets it held.

    We would all do good to remind ourselves of the five rules of gold as told in the "The Richest Man in Babylon"

    Letting Fools invest (vote) always leads to dire consequences.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 10:19 AM, phillyd100 wrote:

    How will this bailout package:

    1- Cause us to have better paying jobs in order to be able to afford to access more credit?

    2- Reduce the amount of debt each family currently has in order to access more debt?

    3- Help those like myself that have lived debt-free and has now watch his home depreciate 30% in 2 years after purchasing it with no mortgage? Where is my bailout?

    4- Help kids going to college for degrees that are supposedly the ones needed in the coming decades get a job? Many many tech jobs are being shipped out overseas!

    We are a bankrupt nation - literally! We owe trillions (yes ... trillions) more than we're worth; isn't that the very definition of bankrupcy? When the amount of money we print brings our dollar down too far then foreign nations will stop lending ... then watch out. There is a chance .... a good chance ... that in the not so distant future we may no longer have the dollar as our currency!

    Read The Coming Economic Earthquake written in mid-80's by Larry Burkett. You won't believe how accurate he was.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 10:32 AM, LinuxLars wrote:

    Your poll misses the most obvious choice:

    DITCH THE BAILOUT AND DEVISE A NEW PLAN

    A bailout is flawed on so many levels.

    Bush says JUMP, and at least congress did not say "HOW HIGH" this time. Leaned something from the Iraq War Push.

    Just because Bush wants a bailout does not mean that's a good idea.

    The administration has known about this for over a year (years if they've been paying attention). There are better solutions.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 10:43 AM, DOD51 wrote:

    Congress got us into this mess by dictating that lending institutions be creative enough to ensure those that couldn't afford housing, could still get it, even if it was temporary.

    The people don't want to pay for this to the tune of 700 billion, and have it oversighted by the Government!!! No thank you.

    Why don't they forget about the next election and think about their country?

    Eliminate the Capital Gains Tax at least temporarily and let businesses revinvest in our country, capitalistically.

    Loosen regulations, at least temporarily so products made here are competitive with products made elsewhere.

    Big picture, look at a fair tax, and expect people to be responsible for their success or failure to succeed. Success can not be mandated, or voted into ones being.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 10:53 AM, omega392 wrote:

    If we the American public are going to be forced to bailout the various financial institutions and mortgage companies, then as far as I am concerned we own those companies and have a right to set the rules by which they receive any money from this bailout. Senior management should be limited to the compensation they receive, no "golden parachutes". We the American public who hold mortgages should be compensated by having our own mortgages reduced anywhere from 1/2 to 1 full point for a minimum of 10 years if not longer. Anyone else paying taxes and not possessing a mortgage should receive some sort of tax rebate to offset their contribution to this bailout. I recognize that the US Government needs to do something to correct this situation, but the government needs to recognize that the American people are partners in this and should be acknowledged and compensated for their sacrifices.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 11:28 AM, cycle924 wrote:

    I am glad that this "bailout" didn't get passed. It is only a way to reward the folks who got us into this mess in the first place. Bush & company, Bernenke, Paulson, etc. who kept denying that there was a housing bubble are now the ""wise ones" with the answers? No way. Republicans administrations have failed us in every way and want financial rewards for doing so.

    I say NO to any financial rescue attempt as it won't save our economy anyway nor truly solve the nations problems.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 11:28 AM, DrummerZoid wrote:

    So I'll be the first to admit I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to these matters, that's why I rely on fellow Fools here for information and opinions. I think a bailout plan does need to be crafted, but I also think the companies that overextended and ignored fundamentals to acquire extremely risky assets shouldn't "benefit". They screwed up by not doing good research. Isn't that a basic rule for finances and investing? I say good riddance. Let the market take the pieces and move forward. That means CEO's/Exec committees/Boards get NOTHING. Maybe The Man should acquire their assets onthe beaches of Florida and elsewhere... I do feel for the people who will lose their jobs, seen it before and never a fan of it. And I like the notion contained in the email chain going around the 'net copied below, too crazy and full of holes as well, but humorous:

    The Birk Economic Recovery Plan

    I'm against the $85,000,000,000.00 bailout of AIG.

    Instead, I'm in favor of giving $85,000,000,000 to America in a 'We Deserve

    It Dividend'.

    To make the math simple, let's assume there are 200,000,000 bon-a-fide U.S.

    Citizens 18+.

    Our population is about 301,000,000 +/- counting every man, woman and child.

    So 200,000,000 might be a fair stab at adults 18 and up.

    So divide 200 million adults 18+ into $85 billon that equals $425,000.00.

    My plan is to give $425,000 to every person 18+ as a 'We Deserve It

    Dividend'.

    Of course, it would NOT be tax free. So let's assume a tax rate of 30%.

    Every individual 18+ has to pay $127,500.00 in taxes. That sends

    $25,500,000,000 right back to Uncle Sam.

    But it means that every adult 18+ has $297,500.00 in their pocket. A

    husband and wife has $595,000.00.

    What would you do with $297,500.00 to $595,000.00 in your family?

    Pay off your mortgage - housing crisis solved

    Repay college loans - what a great boost to new grads

    Put away money for college - it'll be there

    Save in a bank - create money to loan to entrepreneurs

    Buy a new car - create jobs

    Invest in the market - capital drives growth

    Pay for your parent's medical insurance - health care improves

    Enable Deadbeat Dads to come clean - or else

    Remember this is for every adult U S Citizen 18+ including the folks who

    lost their jobs at Lehman Brothers and every other company that is cutting

    back. And of course, for those serving in our Armed Forces.

    If we're going to re-distribute wealth let's really do it... instead of

    trickling out a puny $1,000.00 ( "vote buy" ) economic incentive that is

    being proposed by one of our candidates for President.

    If we're going to do an $85 billion bailout, let's bail out every adult U S

    Citizen 18+!

    As for AIG - liquidate it.

    Sell off its parts.

    Let American General go back to being American General.

    Sell off the real estate.

    Let the private sector bargain hunters cut it up and clean it up.

    Here's my rationale. We Deserve It and AIG doesn't.

    Sure it's a crazy idea that can "never work."

    But can you imagine the Coast-To-Coast Block Party!

    How do you spell Economic Boom?

    I trust my fellow adult Americans to know how to use the $85 Billion 'We

    Deserve It Dividend' more than I do the geniuses at AIG or in Washington DC

    And remember, The Birk Plan only really costs $59.5 Billion because

    $25.5 Billion is returned instantly in taxes to Uncle Sam.

    Ahhh... I feel so much better getting that off my chest.

    Kindest personal regards,

    PS: Feel free to pass this along to your pals as it's either good for a

    laugh or a tear or a very sobering thought on how to best use $85 Billion!!

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 11:51 AM, gchapel wrote:

    There is plenty of blame to go around:

    - Congress put pressure on the mortgage markets to allow unqualified buyers to get mortgages they couldn't pay.

    - Greedy speculators jumped in and used these new rules for "investment purposes".

    - Unscrupulous banks and mortgage companies devised mortgage schemes that made it IMPOSSIBLE for even the marginally qualified to pay.

    - The banks and their investment arms developed complicated ways to scramble these instruments into derivatives that the investment industry could make huge profits on, no matter what the underlying security was.

    - The secondary tier of the market then found schemes to make even more money on the system by devising ways to sell insurance against these shaky, unsecurable instruments.

    - Then the rating companies bought into the whole sales job and, without doing their own due-diligence, or even using a modicum of common sense, they gave inflated ratings to these scrambled derivatives - that gave a flimsy covering of respectability to a growing pile of trash.

    - And the rest of the world bought into the greed that was about all that was left by the time you get to the end of the line.

    Yes, a bailout of some kind has to be constructed to try to undo and clean up this pile of trash. The trash is falling on the innocent - those who had nothing to do with the pile but whose lives will be severely displaced if the pile isn't cleaned up - soon.

    Yes, as part of the bailout some sort of retribution should fall on ALL those who built this pile - from the ground up. I'm all for letting a few more companies hit the dirt. I'm also for a huge tax penalty to fall on - and eat up - all the inflated salaries and huge bonuses that are trying to walk out the door with the executives that let this happen.

    The fiscal conservatives/free-traders are ranting against this bailout in high tones of moral indignation - when in fact they have no morals. If they had even a modicum of moral stature, they would not have let this get this far. This is a perfect - classic - black and white case of the forces of greed vs. fear that we like to think will keep each other in check and keep the markets balanced. That works - up to a point. What we have found out is that without a fence around the arena in which greed and fear fight, they both will fly totally out of control. The "pendulum" will swing so far one way and then the other that it will tear the whole system apart before it ever has a chance to come back to balance.

    Yes, let the markets work as freely as possible. But balance that with the unending capacity of greed and manipulation to distort those free market forces whenever possible. Put a fence around the arena so that the swings are never allowed to get this violent - to the destruction phase. Put the up-tick rule back to harness the options destruction. Put regulations and limits on the derivatives market - which obviously can't govern itself since it doesn't even understand itself.

    Let the markets fight it out - but let it be a fair fight, and one that does NOT destroy innocent bystanders.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 12:06 PM, MonkeyMan1140 wrote:

    I'm very happy the bailout failed. It was unbelievable to see the editor of the Wall Street Journal make the claim 'congress doesn't want to be responsible for the next great depression so they will pass a bill.

    Talk about shifting blame! WALL STREET will be responsible for any great depression, not congress. Typical wall street insiders, things get tough, blame someone else.

    NO MONEY FOR CRIMINALS. Let Wall Street die.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 12:58 PM, EScroogeJr wrote:

    The bailout should be rejected, not just in the current form, but in any form. On the face of it, this bailout looks like a classic case of a young aristocrat losing his shirt in a casino and running to his parents asking them to pay his debts, crying, "just try letting me down, and you will disgrace the honor of the family name forever, so you have no choice but to bail me out". But unlike this 19-th century type, our aristocrats did not lose the card game. In fact, they made a tidy profit by far exceeding the debt they have incurred, a profit they judiciously parked in housing equity which grew quite substantially since 2001 and which they now don't want us to talk about. We are to pay their mortgage debt for them, and to leave them in possession of their fancy houses which will surely go up in value once we remove their incentive to sell by bailing them out. Then we will be renting a room from them if they let us, counting our personal rate of inflation, and feeling happy for having rescued their stock investments as well. Our rents will triple, buying a house for ourselves will become a distant dream like marrying Britney Spears or inheriting an oil well from the king of Saudi Arabia, but we'll be feeling proud for having saved what we have been told was "the economy".

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 4:03 PM, jingoism wrote:

    The public should not allow the government to be used this way, primarily to prop up the most-propertied of socioeconomic classes. Something should be built into this that guarantees that the government will assure that some form of universal health care insurance program is put into place to assist the 46 million people in this country who can't even see a doctor when they need to. Let more doctors in from India and countries like that, after testing them. Provide for different "classes" of doctors, if necessary. (Too bad - this will tend to hurt doctor income, a little.) In addition, provision should be made to prop up the retirement system, since the financial shenanigans did so much to hurt that system.

    Wars are sometimes needed. Government action may sometimes be needed to prop up the economy. Iraq, like our effort in Vietnam, certainly gave our enemies a run for their money. Without the current president, we would not have gone to Iraq. He and the only advisors he would listen to had some suspect religious zeal to avenge the government that Bush Sr prudently decided to not depose - evil as that former government of Iraq may have been. Then again, I believe one of Jr's opening statements was that he doesn't seek counsel from his father.

    I wonder how many other experienced people and potential advisors have been turned away. He's only human, of course, and not only that, I'm sure as are most that the current president has always "meant" well. In fact, whichever one wins, presently it looks like the next president will be somewhat on the "non-great" side, and a 1-termer at that; this one will be somewhat non-great despite being a 2-termer.

    The House and Senate have a critical role of advice and consent. Many of the representatives on those bodies have diverse and very intelligent advisors, who are not as tainted as many of the president's closest advisors. Things like 700 billion dollar can take time to work out.

    Leadership does require going one's own way and leading others, at times, but in a good system of government, it hoepfully falls to the very experienced, and it hopefully results only after lots of counsel with respected views of many different positions. The Senate and House are more likely to have lots of intelligent advisors with serious credentials than is the administration.

    So after taking whatever time is needed to "get it right," they'll pass something. The administration releasing this plan just before the elections and then trying to insist on immediate passage was too obviously a political ploy, from the very start. It just begged for advice and consent, which just may delay it until after the elections.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 5:22 PM, mb335 wrote:

    The bill as submitted did not really have a chance. Irag and the Patriot Act have totally blown the administration's trust. Without a reasonable explanation of what the problem is, and how the bill would solve it, it is never going to pass. This sudden urgency to pass just about anything, and now, is pure fear mongering. We need to think it through and understand it. The days of blindly trusting our leaders are behind us, for better or worse. Maybe they are right this time, but our recent experience with urgent action has not turned out especially well, so we are now understandably cautious.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 7:11 PM, dennis123456 wrote:

    If I'm not mistaken, the reason we live in a republic vice a democracy is to prevent the occurrance of "mob rule". Our representatives are expected to act in the best interests of the nation regardless of what their constituents might tell them they want. In theory, these representatives are suposed to be smarter than the average citizen. Regardless of the adviseablilty of enacting this bill, it is obvious that many of our esteemed representatives were more concerned with saving their own skins (i.e. seats) than with acting in the best interests of their constituents.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 7:41 PM, rchaudhary wrote:

    The speed and the method in which this bill was presented reflects that the Bush administration was caught off guard or didn't bothered till we reached the point of doom.

    It's a shame that the govt. is trying to bail out companies that took the risk of getting in to subprime lending. In a classic opportunistic behaviour, the business is buying out the good companies that have the potential of recovering (in the long term) and asking the govt. to spend $700 B to buy terminally ill companies / debts.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 9:30 PM, scottindallas wrote:

    I still don't want any bailout. Loosening credit is not our job and is not needed. This crisis was caused by cheap credit. Trying to fix the credit that these banks are unwilling to offer each other is folly.

    It's like a corpulent man with clogged arteries and bloated heart asking to be sent back to the buffet line. It is wrong! Let the markets work to set values. We saw the market rebound today, this is called a business cycle, not an opportunity to kickback to Congressional donors.

    Furthermore, who will buy our debt? China has said they are not interested in buying any more dollars. A bailout could trigger an inflationary cycle only Richard Fisher and other monetary experts are discussing.

    And, our debt can't be escaped by inflation, as the vast majority of our Federal debt obligations are not fixed, they are pegged to inflation. A bailout could ruin the country.

  • Report this Comment On September 30, 2008, at 9:55 PM, peteglennon wrote:

    I am a small businessman and object to the passage of the rescue. However, it needs to be done anyway to right a wrong that has taken place. Our institutions packaged and sold mortgage-backed securities to other institutions INCLUDING foreign ones. For us to turn our back especially on the foreign ones is wrong. We have enough problems overseas already. It was our job as a country to regulate what was going on with the packaging of the mortgages. We fell down on the job. Passing the bill is the only option we have short of turning our backs on the US institutions and non-US as well. If modifications to the bill are done properly, we may even make some money out of it.

    Alternatives for the foreign institutions if we don't do this? Sell their TBill portfolios. Interest rates will go through the roof. Then we really will have a recession vs this minor pullback we are experiencing now.

  • Report this Comment On October 01, 2008, at 1:30 AM, Lilliest wrote:

    DrummerZoid - I'm with you. That is EXACTLY my problem with this bill. For much less than 700 billion, we can get most people in the US out of debt - oh, not permanently. I'm not naive enough to believe that most people would actually invest most of the money and a lot of them would rush out and get back in debt. But for a while, it would be a lot of fun.

    Just how does $297,500 for every person in the US over 18 (given we fantasizing to spend 56 billion on it and not 700 billion) not cover the problem with the financial markets? If the problem really is bad debts - WHOSE bad debts? $297,500 for every one over 18 will pay off many peoples' debt completely. It is more than double my total debt and that includes my house. Can someone please explain to me where did they come up with the $700 billion number?

    Instead of giving it to the treasury secretary to bail out people I don't even know - give it to me and people like me. We will pay off - if not all - at least a good portion of our debts, and a lot of us will have enough left over to spend or invest enough to jump start the economy. THAT is why this bill s*cked.

  • Report this Comment On October 02, 2008, at 12:37 PM, SolarInvestor wrote:

    Your math is off. Way off. There are 308M people in the U.S. 229M are adults. 700B/229M = $3000 for every adult, not $300,000.

    Nevertheless, I agree with your conclusion. Give my wife and I $6K and I would definitely down my debt with it.

    The problem is we can't know the future. Those who support the bailout say that if we don't bailout, the economy will implode. How do they know this? Every explanation I've heard is that no one will give credit. OK. Can't buy a house for awhile. What other thing do we NEED credit for? I heard one pundit say companies need to borrow to make their payroll. What responsible company does that? Companies need credit to expand. True, but very few responsible companies would expand in this economic environment anyway.

    Essentially, no credit just means everyone has to act responsible. I think that's a good thing. No bailout. Let the chips fall where they may.

  • Report this Comment On October 03, 2008, at 11:58 AM, rowen2000 wrote:

    The cause of this whole crisis is the insistence by liberals that the "disadvantaged" be provided with houses beyond their means. In recent years when the TV cameras showed where a criminal here in Atlanta was arrested, with his home shown in the background, he ALMOST ALWAYS lived in a beautiful house in a beautiful neighborhood. I knew that something was wrong with our housing lending system. In my personal investments I have stayed away from banks and real estate. I am 80 years old. My father was a banker, Cashier (investing officer) in a national bank, in 1933. They never lost one penny belonging to a depositor during the Depression. He lived his last 9 years (deceased at 93) with me and my wife. I discussed the events of the depression throughout the 9 years. This country has been greatly harmed by political correctness. We can do nothing any wiser than to "pull the chestnuts out of the fire" by HOLD OUR NOSES AND SUPPORTING THE FED AND THE SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY in the 700 billion dollar investment strategy to reopen reasonable credit lines..

  • Report this Comment On October 03, 2008, at 7:19 PM, SurethingDan wrote:

    http://bp1.blogger.com/_nSTO-vZpSgc/R57ax-UG3EI/AAAAAAAAB_0/...

    Currency Cntl-Alt-Del SOON!

    Prepair for a redemption haircut.

  • Report this Comment On October 05, 2008, at 12:28 PM, PeterMo2009 wrote:

    This bailout bill is the first step to Socialism my friends. This is only the first "bailout" bill coming from the greedy out of touch politicians in Washington. I can't wait to vote in November against all those who are up for re-election that voted for this anti-capitalism bill. By allow passage of this bill, it just gives the wealthy another break, while the rest of us middle class struggle and will end up paying for this. The fear and gloom & doomers did a fantastic job on selling this. $150 billion in pork. Come on people! Who are we going to bail out next? I know it won't be the middle class...you can bank on it. Please excuse the pun.

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