Happy Monday people. It’s around 9pm on Sunday night as I’m finishing up writing this thing. I’ll do a quick weekend catch-up before diving into my sole topic for the day.
Keaton’s come down with a cold and is coughing and snotting all over the place, I always feel so bad for her when she’s not well. Saturday night we went to the Oktoberfest celebration at Pat’s church, and drank beer with the parishioners and clergy – fantastic. Sunday I spent a good part of the day working on Halloween props in the garage. I got a lot done: rebuilt the ghost, rewired the dropper and the coffin, and did some planning for the new wire-track prop. And now, I’m busily trying not to listen to the TV Sharaun’s watching while I write (it’s distracting, you know).
OK then, politics and the economy.
I know this point has like already been made (and probably more eloquently and better-researched) elsewhere online, but the thought came to me almost independently, so I’ll go ahead and write up my own thoughts.
A lot of folks, namely my GOP brethren, tend to scoff at Democratic plans to “socialize” the nation’s medical care. I can actually understand this, and will grant that there are several legitimate concerns with any plan to make it happen. However, with the recent goings-down in our fine nation, I can’t help but see a plank in some of these folks’ eyes. Why? Oh, so glad you asked. (See, I wrote all this crap, and I really needed a reason to post it.)
You see, despite the GOP doomsayers’ collective recoil at the prospect of national healthcare, the current Republican administration has effectively authorized the “socialization” of much of the country’s financial institutions’ failures. Doing some quick math, the Fed is proffering a near one trillion dollars in taxpayer-funded loans for floundering institutions. This (very roughly) works out to around $10,000 per tax-paying citizen. Their debt, their fault, your money.
I know, I know, if I only understood the complex world of the global financial markets, I’d realize the Fed is only throwing this “hail Mary” to nip a potential total meltdown in the bud. Thing is, I do understand this; in the very same fundamental way I understand the unpleasant necessity of amputating a gangrenous limb. In this way, the government (and ultimately, the taxpayers) must come to the rescue of the festering giants whose mortgage-backed securities are now worthless, and inject them with some “real” money to keep the whole thing from imploding. At it’s most basic level, I believe I understand both the mechanics and “virtues” of the federal bailouts.
However, I’m not getting any closer to making my point. So, I’ll make it quickly now and do so being as incendiary as I can: What the administration seems to be telling me is that it’s OK to socialize the debt of private industries which are failing, but it would be a bad idea to do the same for the cost of providing private citizens access to health care. To make it more exclamatory: Our money is perfectly suited for providing some AIG CEO with a two-million dollar “severance payout,” but we’d be flirting with Marxist evils were we to propose using those same funds to give your grandmother the drugs she can’t afford.
Sure, that’s oversimplified and pregnant with hyperbole – but it’s the kind of stuff that pops into my head when I think about a one trillion dollar bailout.
Ahh yes, folks, I know… you desperately want to get back to the whole concept of a temporary “necessary evil” versus wanton and unnecessary permanent socialization. Oh and yes, I know the “administration” I refer to above makes no moves without our illustrious 110th (Democratic) Congress at its hip. And yeah, I know that bailouts could technically be structured as loans and not handouts, and would then theoretically be paid back (with interest) after time, and a national health plan would be an ongoing expense. I also realize folks may say it’s something of a reach to say the bailouts “socializing” private debt.
It’s OK, you don’t have to point these things out to me – I know them already and understand. It doesn’t change the fact that I still feel like the above healthcare vs. bailout thing is an incongruity worth pondering. I mean, it’s a trillion dollars. Think of what could be done…
Hope I didn’t lose you, you know I love all of you… goodnight.