jump to navigation

Let’s Put Down the Pitchforks March 22, 2009

Posted by tkcollier in Economy & Business.
Tags: , ,
trackback

During a financial crisis, fairness is a luxury we cannot afford. During the 1930s, bankers and financiers lost everything, but the outcome — a decade-long depression — was hardly fair to the ordinary American. The key question is not whether something is fair, but whether it helps get us through this mess faster and at a lower cost.

mob_pitchforks_smallAt the moment, the Treasury is working (and working and working) on ways to entice private capital back into the banking and shadow-banking system by offering government financing and guarantees against losses. Every dollar of private capital that can be attracted back into the system is a dollar that the Treasury won’t have to borrow or the Federal Reserve won’t have to print. And only with the return of private capital will the government be able to get back the rescue money it has committed.

As the financiers see it, there’s a big difference between the government that sets tough terms for participation in its financial rescue programs and a government that is a fickle and unreliable partner, that tries to micromanage their businesses and changes the rules of the game with every zig and zag of public opinion

While it was Wall Street that got rich by peddling new ways for Americans to live beyond their means, the decision to do so was ours. It was we who ran up the credit card bills, we who drew down the equity in our homes and we who refused to tax ourselves for the government services we demanded. Wall Street bankers may have been the pushers, but it was we Americans who became addicted to the easy credit.

via Steven Pearlstein – Let’s Put Down the Pitchforks – washingtonpost.com.

Comments»

No comments yet — be the first.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: