Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Ransom note

This anonymous note is getting a lot of play on the Internet:

put one trillion dollars in a bag by the side of the road or you will never see your economy again


Max Fischer said...

President Bush got that note. He immediately called China and borrowed the money to pay the randsom. Then, he skype'd Putin to look into his eyes to study his soul again. You know, "trust but verify". So Bush borrowed more money from Russia to pay the Chinese the interest on the original loan. About the same time, the French tourists flocked to US malls to drive our "consumption" driven economical model with their golden euro's. Then, suddenly President Bush realized that irony, never the fool, prevailed in the higher level of realization that he alone had hi-jacked our own economy about seven years ago. And the wheels keep on spinning.

The South Plainsman said...

To make a serious understatement, the message is all too true. The candidates seem to be well advised, and are taking similar positions, both different from Bush, of course.

Hopefully the Congress will follow along and implement some of the changes both propose. If they pass the bill at all. I am still wondering if we have to go as far as Paulson and Bernanke think. They are the experts, certainly, but that much authority to the Treasury just really bothers me.

sph said...

Curiosity has gotten the best of me. Has this Wall Street Debacle, energy crisis, WAR in Iraq or any of the myriad other disasters changed any votes with this Blog’s reading audience?

I had a very pleasant visit with an M.D. today. He is life long Republican, retired military who is voting for Obama. He didn't even blink an eye when he told me and he had no idea of my party affiliation.

That just got me to wondering.....

JohnSBoles said...

sph asked "...any of the myriad other disasters changed any votes with this Blog’s reading audience?"

As an individual that has voted for each party and an independent this hasn't changed the way I select my candidate. I do believe these last eight years may have brought a bit of independence to some previously straight ticket Republicans.

The South Plainsman said...

I have held elected public offices as both a Democrat and a Republican since 1968. I switched from the Democrats when Jimmy Carter was President. Since I left public office, I consider myself an independent and vote that way.

I always respected John McCain, but never liked him. Once he got the nomination, and Obama sewed up the Democratic nomination, I have been for McCain as the lesser of two evils.

Now that this economic crisis has come up (its been coming for years)I am going to step back and look at how each candidate deals with it. That will have a great amount to do with how I ultimately vote. I will confess that it will be difficult to shake my lean toward McCain. But it is not unshakeable.

What is done will be one of the most important things of our lifetimes. We shall see how each measures up. So far its about even.

The South Plainsman said...

The Hamlet question...

"To be, or not to be. That is the question." Shakespeare wrote a nice play about it. We are now seeing the drama played out before our eyes. Which way to go?

Are Paulson and Bernanke giving us a completely straight story, or are they a tad bit biased toward all of their pals on Wall Street? Same goes for Volcker and Rubin, who advise Obama.

Would the costs of the bailout be about the same as the cost of not doing so? Again the question. If they are about the same, we should not bail them out.

How do we assess the risks of each? Is anybody doing this?

What is going on behind the scenes that must remain secret?

There are a lot of questions with no answers, just like Hamlet's.

I just sent this out in an email and thought I would post it here for criticism.

Max Fischer said...

I'm a lifelong Democrat that is an Arizona resident and has voted Republican a few times in my life. In fact, as I remind my Republican friends that question my ability to be intellectually honest, I've voted for John McCain once more than anybody I know in these blogitrons (2004 Senate race). During the past week, I honestly feel that Senator Obama has appeared the most "Presidential" in rhetoric, demeanor and calm approach. I admit that this is purely an emotional take, however I'm okay with that. I want to feel good and reassured and right now the only candidate that is doing it for me is Obama. Our house is in shambles and in dire need of repair. As President Kennedy once noted with pure optimism; "You repair the roof when the sun is shining". I believe that Obama shares such optimism and I also feel that the roof will be fixed twice as strong and with a few sky-lights to let the light shine in, with Obama at the healm.

Ugh. My apologies for digressing into hyperbole and mellow-drama.

It's just a feeling, that's all. I was firmly in Camp Hillary because I do surmise that Obama brings the party back too far left. I'm okay with that as well.

Obama makes me feel good. A deposit into my emptional bank account that resonates in current times.

sph said...

Thanks. It is drama, isn't it? A "political play" with characters and scripts and plots and strategic moves....but sadly real life.

Perhaps the Plays of Shakespeare hold the solution because it doesn't sound like anyone today has a fix.

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern - weren't they Shakespeare's messengers like Paulson and Bernanke or Volcker and Rubin are for this episode? (Is that where “don’t shoot the messengers” came from?)

I hold to the old Hightower saying that "the only thing in the middle of road in Texas politics is a dead armadillo".

Thank you Johnboles. Calm in the midst of the storm.

And Max,your "digressions" are better than most peoples paths - no need to apologize on my account.

Anonymous said...

The problems this country faces today are unequaled in our lifetime,well maybe George's,but not the rest of us.
We can play the blame game till the moon turns green but that doesn't solve anything The financial sunami is here and it has to be dealt with.
I have gone from one side to the other trying to see which approach we should should take.There is no light at the end of the tunnel,that I can see.
Do we gamble and let the companies crater,along with the goons who ran them or do we say go ahead with the bailout and throw that much more on our kids and grandkids.
It's one of those "damned if you do and damned if you don't" situations. Regardless,the scum who ran the companies should not get a dime for running their respective companies in the grand.
About letting the situation on this blog change my vote, it hasn't and probably won't. Until Palin joined the fray, I was not going to cast a vote for President.
Mccain has never impressed me as being anything other than a middle of the road Senator because he didn't want to make anybody mad at him.
Obama is, in my mind, a pure,out and out phony. His past personal connections with some of the slime of this society and his past voting record,( here we'll have to rely on his state senatorial record) has resulted in his being the most liberal Senator in the U.S.Senate. When he wasn't trying to gain something peersonal out of it,his usual vote was 'present'.
I am personally an independent voter,and I intend to stay that way.The SouthPlainsman and I are probably the only consistent conservatives on this blog,but we feel that we have to baby sit George so that when he falls on his liberal face,we'll be there to catch him.--------Goose

sph said...

Goose, with no offense to GP, I just wondered if the events happening in REAL TIME not on this BLOG had changed anyone's vote.

And GP hope you don't mind if I ask questions but I am having trouble finding people who will talk about this subject except here on your Blog. Some seem kind of embarassed and some seem terribly defensive here in Central Texas.

Another question: If, as you say, this crisis has been developing for years, why are we just now in an extreme hurry to fix it? Lowering the prime appears to have not worked but I don't know of any other solutions that were offered prior to this $700 billion one. Were there other attempts to divert this?

Max Fischer said...

Here's an alarming example of why I feel the turbo worst is yet to come.

The other day my daughter and I went to the Apple Store to look at iPods. There were at least 100 people in that store. They were not there kicking tires either. I noticed about a half dozen computer purchases and a few other iPod buys. As my daughter played with the iPods, I watched each transaction. All settled with a credit card. Not one with an old-school "net-30" AMEX. All VISA/Mastercard. Consumers are still consuming, oblivious to the obvious but feeling "confident(?)" that they can make a minimum payment.

So where do we go from here? Credit markets will dry up in swift order and Americans will be getting letters from their banks to tell them that their 20k credit limit has been lowered to 2k, due to "market conditions".

Sadly, that's when it'll hit us directly in the gut.

Anybody on this board listen to Dave Ramsey on the radio? The guy has sage advice re: debt, etc. With all the talk radio poison ("hateio") this is a welcome stop on the AM dial.

The South Plainsman said...

Max, I think the situation you described is what this bailout is designed to preserve. The thinking is that if the credit markets freeze up, then business and consumers will be unable to get credit. So the taxpayer will bail out the financial institutions so that the credit markets will be saved. Until the next time, I guess.

Of course, folks that buy and consume on credit cards are paying a huge interest rate relative to what a savings account pays. I don't think that is very bright unless they pay them off every month.

At some point, the country is going to stop consuming on credit, and start saving again. But that is just an old-fashioned idea from an old geezer.

Max Fischer said...

Well stated, South Plainsman. And there within lies our dilemna. Do we go through with the bailout to perpetuate and enable dysfunctional habits? Or do we tough love us into a more responsible paradigm?

Great take, my friend. I appreciate your intellectual honesty.

Anonymous said...

sph-- Let me assure you that I know of no one on this blog that would be persuaded to change their minds. In 'real time'we all just go about our business and don't really have much of anybody to express our views to. The GP blog serrves not only a good practice for our writing skills,but also a place to vent our frustrations over why George, Mystery Woman,Jeff and others simply won't admit they are wrong and join the conservative movement like most thinking people do.
Now I'll hear from that.----Goose

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