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The Zombie Apocalypse Will Eat Our Economy

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According to horror movie canon, there are many ways zombies could come about. These terrifying quirks could consist of anything from radioactivity to pollution to a virus to some mysterious substance from outer space. Whatever the cause, though, it usually reflects something our society fears -- or possibly should fear -- at any given time. Unfortunately, it's becoming clear that the threat of zombies here and now is real.   

That is, the zombie banks and zombie corporations that are artificially kept alive even though in any rational, natural world they should be dead. And if these reanimated corpses are still stumbling around, growing greater and greater in number, well, I'm pretty sure we all know what appears to be causing the dead to rise.

Send more paramedics
Repeated capital infusions into companies like Bank of America (NYSE: BAC  ) and Citigroup (NYSE: C  ) seem to be very good examples of the ravenous undead. And the infection is spreading and underlining the kind of problems and moral hazard we now face. The Big Three automakers, General Motors (NYSE: GM  ) , Ford (NYSE: F  ) , and Chrysler, represent hundreds of thousands of jobs, and the recent government bailout loans to GM and Chrysler shows the great lengths politicians will go in order to keep them alive. The real long-term problem is that, since these companies have already failed the market test to begin with, they're not really alive, are they?

And now there are rumors that other struggling industries in the current economic climate are clamoring for government boosters from the coming economic stimulus programs in some form. Such industries the media has cited include airlines, which includes UAL (Nasdaq: UAUA  ) and Continental (NYSE: CAL  ) , and steel, which includes companies like Nucor (NYSE: NUE  ) . But why weren't their business models built for survival, taking into account the inevitable business cycles? (And you could argue the airlines' business models haven't even been built to survive in good times, either.) Surely there's an argument that there's zombification at work in these cases, too.

Propped-up companies aren't vital and healthy. And they will continue to lumber around, ravenously devouring capital, which then will not be available for strong, living, vibrant companies. This is what happened in Japan, contributing to that nation's so-called lost decade.

Talk about a zombie apocalypse!

You've got red on you
In my long history of horror movie fanaticism, I've seen a lot of zombie kills. Whether it's the rather run-of-the-mill bullet through the head, a well-placed blow with a cricket bat, a Sade vinyl LP, or (and this one was pretty gross), helicopter blades, I've seen a lot of different methods to stop zombies in their tracks.  

I know, it's gross and it's violent, but for goodness' sake they're not actually alive, and worse, they're trying to chomp on us living, breathing, sentient, productive citizens! (And they're only movies.)

So what to do about the zombie banks and corporations that we are building right now? Well, to avoid another scenario like Japan's lost decade, maybe the government needs to stop feeding them immediately. (Incidentally, zombie starvation eventually did the trick in 28 Days Later.)

There are, of course, different versions of exactly what the real problem was that caused Japan's disaster. I've noticed that when it comes to economics, it's easy to find all kinds of explanations for why anything good or ill has happened in economic history. For example, you've probably heard that the New Deal helped us out of the Great Depression, but there's also the argument that what really got us back on track was World War II.

Likewise, when it comes to Japan's lost decade, some claim that Japan's government did nothing for too long and that's why everything stagnated. However, another compelling explanation (and definitely a component of the problem) was that the government plowed money into pointless infrastructure projects ("bridges to nowhere") and that it kept giving capital to sick and dying banks and then their sick and dying borrowers, instead of simply letting the unhealthy die a natural death.

They're coming to get you, Barbara!
In my opinion, unhealthy companies need to be allowed to fail, fail, fail. Over and over in my reading, a very logical theme has repeatedly cropped up: It does not make sense to continuously pour capital to non-competitive, ailing businesses -- it will not stimulate economic growth.

It simply takes capital away from healthy companies (and individuals). It's wasteful and counterproductive, and starves the healthy (much like zombies prey on the living). And of course there's that darn moral hazard thing again.

Meanwhile, the din is growing louder that TARP funds are being used in a non-transparent manner and worse, the hand-outs of capital don't seem focused on only helping truly strong financial companies, but rather may be politically motivated, which was always a huge part of the danger of such an undertaking, of course.

Regardless of whether people intellectually reside in the "government-must-spend," "go-ahead-and-nationalize," or the "let-them-fail" camp, there at least seems to be agreement that the financial companies must start writing down toxic waste on balance sheets to ugly (but realistic) levels and the unhealthiest firms need to be let go. Likewise, companies that can't pass the market test need to be allowed to die their natural deaths, too. It's going to be difficult medicine and short-term pain, but destroying the zombies is what we need for a healthy economy in the long run.   

I have been known to occasionally joke about being prepared for the coming zombie apocalypse. Little did anybody realize there was a zombie threat coming -- just not the kind you see in the movies. Hopefully people will wake up and realize that it's a long-term mistake to keep the zombies of our economy alive … otherwise we may end up with a sequel nobody really wanted to see: Decade of the Living Dead Economy.

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Alyce Lomax does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned, and would probably like having an army of zombie-killing clones like the Alice in Resident Evil. The Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (35) | Recommend This Article (134)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

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  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 4:17 PM, motleyanimal wrote:

    Zombies should starve out soon enough. If I remember my George Romero films correctly, they need a constant diet of "Brains" which seem to be in short supply in the financial business.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 4:32 PM, TMFLomax wrote:

    LOL!!!! Good one!! :)

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 5:26 PM, JoergL wrote:

    The problem is that these zombies are not dead and buried and then come back, summoned by some evil spirit. They are still here, well connected to everything among the living, and if they die suddenly, they are ready to take half the economy with them.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 5:54 PM, nullDevice wrote:

    I have to lodge a mild protest against lumping Ford with its fellow domestic auto makers. It has yet to belly up to the trough... though we'll see how long that lasts.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 6:58 PM, ctangus wrote:

    Heh - good analogy.

    Wish I could find the link but I read a suggestion a few days ago that made sense if the gov't is going to insist on TARP: use the TARP funds along with private equity to capitalize NEW banks. They'd be starting with clean balance sheets and it would stimulate lending (they'd have to lend to start making $).

    In the meantime let existing banks make it or not on their own merits. We wouldn't be subsidizing failure.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 7:03 PM, GE0C0R0NA wrote:

    Well, we would be subsidizing failure up to the FDIC limits...

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 7:28 PM, JoergL wrote:

    I'm afraid capitalizing new banks would be a final thumbs down for a lot of existing banks, not only those that are really bad. People would panic and withdraw their funds from every bank not funded. Seems like a receipe for upheaval.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 8:27 PM, catoismymotor wrote:

    Motleyanimal, well said!

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 9:43 PM, potiusmori wrote:

    How are you defining failing the market test, in regards to the Big Three? Last I knew in 2008 Ford, GM, and Chrysler combined still comprised about 49% of the market. Heck, GM is (in the US) still outselling the darling Toyota, and still is #2 in the world. Ford's still selling more than Honda, and isn't terribly far behind Toyota (only about 200,000 units).

    To me that sounds like passing a market test, whereas the industry as a whole is facing a very steep financing test. Toyota posting its first loss in many, many years is as true a sign of this issue as any of the plight of US Government bailouts.

    I'm not saying other factors aren't involved in the current situation for Ford, GM, and Chrysler. I'm just questioning your assessment of Zombie status for all three. Ford has yet to take any bailout funds, be it US, Canada, Sweden or elsewhere. GM is finally admitting it has too many brands (though we'll see what it actually does about that in the near future). Chrysler, however, does seem to be a zombie but largely because of the lack of proper investment in the company by Cerberus and Daimler.

  • Report this Comment On January 23, 2009, at 10:30 PM, RiverRover wrote:

    Right on, especially as this applies to the big banks that failed. Only one that I've heard of has given even a hint of where all that money went.

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2009, at 1:32 AM, UpwithEconomy wrote:

    Come on all you critics, it´s time to start up and push up the cart ant stop no end criticism. What we all should do is say : "I´m sick of all this crisis chat, I´m sure with what I´m capable and I will not allow my no sense fears to convert into real fears because of my own acts, tomorrrow I´ll go out, cgo to my Citi bank, ask for a new credit (in an amount I can pay) an the go an change my car for a new American made Hybrid ! Then go to eat at a good restauran, an then work happly the week, be with my mates and family, enjoy the weekend, go to movies and start moving it again !!!

    If I do it, an you do it, and we all do it, we´ll back on track on our self confidence !!!!!!! Come you all guys, no more complaitning!!!!!

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2009, at 11:50 AM, vmj13 wrote:

    I agree zombie companies should be allowed to fail (I happen to work for one of the ones listed and it would be best if it were put out of its misery). However the problem is lots of innocent people will be taken down with it. In this case killing the zombie will kill even more innocent lives! We need to find a way for zombies to be made viable, management to be held accountable and have people keep their jobs. Or kill the zombie but make/find jobs for all the innocents. Maybe we don't give taxpayer $ to companies until: they appoint all new management (and no golden parachutes to the management who got the company into the mess); have a restructuring plan in place; set limits on management compensation; etc. However some will not be able to meet these conditions or will fail anyway. What I don't see any "expert" giving an answer to is the question of what will the millions of casualties (i.e., people whow lost their jobs) do? How will they provide for themselves and their children (who are truly the innocent of the innocents in all this mess)?

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2009, at 1:23 PM, Ecomike wrote:

    If I recall everyone eventually turns into a zombie even if you incinerate the current zombies, as the poison spreads through the incinerator ash emissions to it's neighbors.

    What you fail to realize is that zombies, should they be allowed to fail, would be like setting off WMD Zombies worldwide turning all of us and all the still viable companies into zombies overnight. End result would be greater Great Depression like the world has never seen.

    If you don't believe me, just look at all the damage your suggestion of letting zombies fail did when the free market idealists let just one of them fail and die, namely Lehman Brothers. The result was a complete overnight collapse of international shipping and international trade as LB was the heart of letter of Credit international trade and shipping. Let just one more large one like that fail in one of the larger economies right now and it will turn us all into zombies.

    If I recall correctly some zombies were saved if help got to them soon enough!

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2009, at 3:20 PM, JoergL wrote:

    I'm glad some people see it the same way as I do. Thank you. :)

    If Lehman is not big enough to make the point clear, look at the 30s, when they actually let the zombies die. Ouch...

  • Report this Comment On January 25, 2009, at 10:31 AM, Cleveland1 wrote:

    The decision as to whether a commercial entity should be allowed to "fail" should not be made on some broad philisophical bais, but on a case by case basis. The decision hinges on whether the problems that have caused the distress are permanent and systemic such as there are too many auto companies and unionized auto companies will be unprofitable no matter what or are the problems one time in nature, not likely to recur as long as we can recapitlize the entity. The latter is the case with our banks. The basics of making a spread on lending assets is not a failed business model, but what we are facing now is the burden of very bad credit decisions made over the past six years. But they are not likely to continue as we go forward. When this is the case failure should not mean obliteration because assmebled work forces, assets, and processes have value, but should be substituted with the idea that we let these companies go through a Chapter 11 type of proceeding or something akin to it where old shareholders are wiped out, some creditors too and new investors come into a restructued situation. The problem we have with the banks is that the problem is so massive in scale on the order of $1-2 trillion that there are no pools of private equity capital large enough to provide new equity. Hence, we are left to the only pool large enough - the taxpayers. Let's not get carried away with ideology over practicality. Recapitlizing banks with taxpayer money might be the right thing to do.

  • Report this Comment On January 25, 2009, at 2:56 PM, CathrynMataga wrote:

    "Hence, we are left to the only pool large enough - the taxpayers."

    US income tax only comes in at about $1.5T or so and with the economy tanking that's not going to stay what it is. The bank obligations might even dwarf all US tax revenue, the Iceland scenario.

    Do taxes still count anymore? We're going into a strange la-la-land where the US budget expenditures and revenue are completely decoupled. A trillion here, a trillion there, this all adds up and there's no tax that will ever pay back all this stuff.

  • Report this Comment On January 25, 2009, at 4:24 PM, JoergL wrote:

    Chips like skyscrapers in a big city ... Let them tilt and fall to the side. What happens? Was it the neighbours' fault to build their houses so close?

  • Report this Comment On January 25, 2009, at 5:06 PM, bedfordfool wrote:

    Great analogy, but don't stop there. What Romero honestly portrays as cannibalism, our zombie congress considers "stimulus". We and our children are food for the zombie congress. Of course, we couldn't have a zombie congress without a zombie press and zombie electorate. Everyone thinks that somehow, this impending bureaucratic disaster will work in their favor.

    My grandparents' standard of living was devoured by the 10-year New Deal, and now it is our turn.

  • Report this Comment On January 25, 2009, at 6:01 PM, TMFBreakerRob wrote:

    Excellent article, Alyce!

    I have one significant mis-giving though. It seems that so much of our economy is floundering now that a total hands-off approach would lead us into a situation where we could remain intellectually triumphant, but economically swirling down device.

    I'm not happy with the fact that our elected representatives are throwing money at companies like crazy, but I think we need some actions to confine the instability so that failures can be absorbed by the economy instead of knocking it out.

    How to do that effectively and efficiently? I don't know. I just hope its effective, while recognizing that it certainly won't be efficient.

  • Report this Comment On January 25, 2009, at 6:41 PM, pedorrero wrote:

    The gist I read is "What can government do to get us out of this mess?" Perhaps a better question a Fool can ask is "How can I protect myself from further likely disasters?" How much did government policies get us into this mess (answer: much, many, a lot!). Question; is government bail-outs really going to help (sure! the politically-connected, the zombie corporations, the unions, and of course, the POLITICIANS!). Problem: there is no constituency to do the right thing (e.g. let people or corporations fail). The debt is being run up. Why the heck not, as long as the Chinese and other foreigners buy our debt. Problem: a day will come when most of them say "no more." That may lead to the Fed printing money out of thin air (more so than they have been doing), coincident with a collapse in the value of the dollar. After the dollar becomes worthless, the US (government at least) will have some very tough choices to make. We will either return to a freer economy (e.g. less subsidies, maybe gold for money?) or --- sadly, more likely in my book, given society's drift -- into something approaching a dictatorship. Can't happen here? I wish that were true. Study history.

  • Report this Comment On January 25, 2009, at 8:04 PM, HadEnoughNow wrote:

    I would not create new banks, just provide any stimulus money to those that meet liquidity standards, so that they are in a position to actually loan it out. This would also following the apparently foreign concept to the Congress of rewarding good behavior, not bad--so, no moral hazard. These smaller, regional banks would then be in a position to buy out the larger, incompetently run national banks that are in fact solvent. They could buy them at pennies on the dollar, which would shield them against the decreased value of the toxic assets the national banks now hold, and no one know how to value until actual sales take place. This will never happen, because it is a free-market solution to our problem, and we have a anti-capitalism government in place. Congress wants more power over our lives and the economy. This crisis gives them the excuse to grow the federal government, which policy will bankrupt us all.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2009, at 12:07 PM, CathrynMataga wrote:

    "These smaller, regional banks would then be in a position to buy out the larger, incompetently run national banks that are in fact solvent."

    These banks are so deep in the hole, that any good bank + bad bank deal = bad bank -- as in how BAC + Merryl Lynch has ruined Bank of America. Personally, I don't see why it takes hundreds of billions just to save a few storefronts that lend out money. We might just let the whole house of cards collapse and then rebuild from scratch. The people who know how to make loans would still be still out there, just rehire them.

    The danger in nationalizing all these obligations is that all their bad bets become our bad bets. Income tax revenue is not infinite, it is very finite relative to the numbers being thrown around here. BofA was just guaranteed $97B, That's like 6.5% of a year's US income tax receipts right there, and these numbers are getting thrown around all the time.

    Better off to use bailout money and on 'real economy' companies that have an actual business plan.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2009, at 12:53 PM, JoergL wrote:

    Most bank money is not from shareholders, but from lenders. Whose money is lost when you let the banks just fail?

    - Savings of ordinary people

    - Investments of businesses and of people

    - FED money

    - (add your own)

    That's a lot of people who would lose trillions in the end. And many sound businesses would fail just because they couldn't get financing any more. Btw, the resulting mess would cost a lot of your tax money, too, I'm sure.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2009, at 1:51 PM, CathrynMataga wrote:

    We still don't know where the bottom is. These numbers could be 'nation destroying' level, and we still wouldn't save these banks. The ordinary depositors would still be covered by FDIC. We could take the banks through some kind of bankruptcy process and a judge could pick and choose who gets paid, and who gets the shaft reducing the total amount of money needed to pour down the rathole. Banks could still function in the meantime under some kind of government supervision.

    We'd come out more quickly on the other side with functioning banks, rather than what we're doing now -- with our nation being drained alive by the vampiric-banking system. BAC just was guaranteed $97B on bad assets, and I got a feeling they are going to use that. That's like $300 per every human in the entire nation, right there. We can't keep doing this.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2009, at 2:33 PM, robertf36009 wrote:

    Had King Paulsen and company actually used the TARP money to buy up troubled assets there was a chance things could recover fairly quickly juat by clearing the toxic assets from bank ballance sheets. As it is the stake we taxpayers bought is already down 65% (Best guess).

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2009, at 2:47 PM, CathrynMataga wrote:

    "Had King Paulsen and company actually used the TARP money to buy up troubled assets there was a chance things could recover fairly quickly juat by clearing the toxic assets from bank ballance sheets."

    Maybe, but the problem is nobody knew back then how bad the bank situation really was, was $700B enough? I think what happened was they found their $700B was way too little money to put out the fire so they opted just to use the money to keep the patients on life support until Obama came around. As of right now, it's still the case, nobody really knows how bad the banks are off.

  • Report this Comment On January 28, 2009, at 4:01 AM, AdamSmith37 wrote:

    "Talk about a zombie apocalypse!" What a FANTASTIC analogy. For the record, eventually the big three US banks along with many other entities, will likely fail despite the bailout funds (smokescreen actually to cover-up and con volute what's really going on here). So after all the expense of mortgaging our great grandchildren's future and beyond and maybe even making our country susceptible to a hostile takeover or foreclosure by default, what has actually been accomplished by all the infusions of extremely limited resources from those of us who can not afford the drain to those who least deserve such an immense transfer of wealth? These monstrous transfers of $25 Billion etc. are going to have to become monthly or bi-monthly installments to various and assorted entities for many years if they are to survive, and many of the banks have such huge exposures to derivative/credit swap high-risk high-stakes gambles of multi-trillion dollar entanglements that they will be like dominoes falling when the bailouts stop, and they will stop because either people will come to their senses or they will come to be too broke to go on with such insanity. Whether or not one contends this all to be a direct result of pre-programmed and calculated monetary policies of the past and present with the attendant end result merely a matter of cat and mouse entertainment by power brokers who could really care less about the people problems that their actions have precipitated, except perhaps to minimize any chance of revolt which is pretty well nil during a deflationary depression such as we are about to be sucked into ready or not, or simply the result of massive zombie incompetence, matters not. There's still time to minimize the consequences through correct thinking but much of the damage has been done already and we all will have to live with that. The big corporations which reaped mega profits for many years and simply blew it out to high paid people or dividends, etc., without actually being responsible enough to set aside for rainy days and/or secure their own futures through intense R&D really need to be replaced through whatever expedient means necessary to put this "train-wreck" back on the tracks. Technology properly directed can help us out of this mess, but it too will require transfers of wealth and where will it come from once the zombies have drained the proverbial financial dam of all available limited funds and resources? This applies to all companies big or small whether they be GM or JP Morgan etc. -- there will be economic consequences but the trick will be to transform these into viable functioning entities which can be done but only through conceptually responsible leadership within each. Since we have witnessed that the trickle down theory did not work perhaps it is time to reverse the approach. People really do not want handouts, but they do want jobs and the ability to produce. The new administration has been thrust into this and hopefully will be able to comprehensively address the situation before it is too late. The historical operation of companies via delegation of duties is an obsolete dead horse. Rather than nationalizing ownership, what is now called for is operation by employee ownership. Each person within a given firm needs to be a stake-holder and also needs to be able to multi-task in two or more positions so as to allow for smooth and cohesive production. Too many entities today are way top heavy, whether it be corporate (GM, Ford etc.) or governmental (USPS) and this merely sets up a leaching of value away from the producers to the delegatory suits who have nothing better to do than sit back and collect the funds or even create problems within organizations. When each person becomes a stake-holder in a given entity, they tend to become more responsible for their own as well as other people's actions which generates each to become goal oriented because they now feel they are a part of the whole. Combining this approach along with technological advances will insure that we as a collective nation can begin to navigate our way out of this "financial and economic black-hole". The process is the "worm-hole" out of "zombie apocalypse", but time is definitely of an essence.

  • Report this Comment On January 28, 2009, at 1:40 PM, chali2na wrote:

    Vote Ron Paul in 2012!

  • Report this Comment On January 28, 2009, at 3:49 PM, MikeMark wrote:

    Great analogy, Alyce!

    Something to consider about your statement:

    "For example, you've probably heard that the New Deal helped us out of the Great Depression, but there's also the argument that what really got us back on track was World War II."

    World War II got the United States back on track at the expense of destruction of production infrastructure of the entire rest of the producing world.

    I'm also hopeful that our leaders begin to see through the hand waving and lack of true help that is happening. I look forward to better re-education programs, fewer financial bonfires, and the return of the economic vote to the people!

  • Report this Comment On January 28, 2009, at 8:55 PM, tom728 wrote:

    You may want to take another look at NUE !

    To put this company in the same sentence with

    UAL is preposterous.

    Business Model ? The company is one of the

    best run in any sector that has volatility built in.

    Oh.......and while you're at it take a look at

    the balance sheet.

  • Report this Comment On January 30, 2009, at 5:29 PM, pbealtx wrote:

    This is a direct result of moral failure all the way through the chain - homebuyers, appraisers, lenders, auditors, rating agents, company hot shots, wall street BROKErs, government non-regulators, government do-gooders, etc.

    But we seek to solve it with cash thrown around like it's going out of style!

    Money may be needed short-term, but I don't see anything being done to solve the endemic problem of lying, greed, avarice that the Protestant work ethic used to be a balance against before Humanism became the state religion promoted by the government/media and taught in our schools. There is therefore no longer a right and wrong nor a God to answer to. It's everyone's moral relativism and if-it-feels-good-do-it ethics that resulted in this mess.

  • Report this Comment On January 31, 2009, at 4:21 AM, fangznclawz wrote:

    The moral component of the eat-your-own, let 'em fail proposition is correct. The practical economic model is correct. What isn't addressed is the social/political fallout of such wholesale dislocation. Put simply, a survey of twentieth-century history shows this policy (and many others associated to free-market economics) to be a potent political teratogen (monster-creator). Just as outlandish as any zombie movie (a genre I too enjoy), is the historical fact that Jews were being turned into soap eight years before I was born. Or that Stalin starved five to ten million Ukrainians to death 21 years before that date. And any mainstream history of these facts mentions the economic policies and practices, and the consequences therefrom, that opened the door to such grotesque social pathologies. I suspect considerations of the consequenses of this kind of mass social upheaval, drawn from twentieth-century history, is why the politicians may have chosen the flawed approach of the bailouts. After all, if one is forced to choose, wouldn't you rather go through 'Night of the Living Dead' than 'War of the Worlds'?

  • Report this Comment On February 02, 2009, at 6:35 PM, IQ100 wrote:

    For crying out loud, BHO has recycled Clinton's team, some ‘change’ that is.

    The real problem as I see it.

    (1) **Mark to market rule - that should have been suspended day 1 of this crisis.

    (2) **Short selling – Get rid of it or at LEAST bring back the uptick rule – it’s ridiculous that folks that don’t have a real stake can manipulate the market so much. See comment 4 below.

    (3) Investing in OIL with no intent of consuming – it used to be only those that were going to actually take the oil could buy oil contracts – that was bound to pop – it did not need short sellers it needed real consumers.

    (4) Day traders are like short sellers and I don’t see any difference in them and 0% down 100% financed home speculators. Enact minimum times between in and out on trades – If you are in then you are in for a period longer than 1 week – you might as well sweat it out like the real investors.

    (5) Folks bailing on their mortgages – hey they call it a promissory note – make them perform. The Fed BAD bank – should use the IRS to track these folks down and make them take a 20% capital gains for the write downs the banks take.

    (6) Fire Congress – or at least the folks that pushed the banks to make loans to all these folks that could not make the payments &&&& Arrest mortgage officers that helped folks get loans they outright knew they could not pay when say a 5.1 ARM with a balloon payment came due.

    (7) Interest only loans – what the heck? The bank executives should be jailed.

    (8) Pain NOW or LATER? – first take care of 1,2,3,4,5,6,7 – They don’t cost the taxpayers a dime, and in case 6 may save us more bail out money.

  • Report this Comment On February 25, 2009, at 3:14 PM, PlainRal wrote:

    YEAH !!!!! kick over the bee hive, take the pain and get the healing started.. Anyone with a practical foolish brain can see the LIGHT. In the mean time pick and choose the best place to put the $$$$$.

  • Report this Comment On March 02, 2012, at 12:50 AM, funspirit wrote:

    3 years later is appears bailing out the car companies was a good idea, as they are back and profitable!

    Interesting reading this history though :)

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C $49.93 Down -0.08 -0.16%
Citigroup CAPS Rating: ***
CAL.DL2 $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
Continental Airlin… CAPS Rating: *
F $11.74 Down -0.14 -1.18%
Ford CAPS Rating: ****
GM $31.33 Down -0.25 -0.79%
General Motors CAPS Rating: ***
NUE $46.74 Down -0.60 -1.27%
Nucor CAPS Rating: *****
UAUA.DL $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
UAL Corp CAPS Rating: *