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  • Let Goliath Fall

    March 21, 2009

    I was listening to a popular financial radio show the other day and a caller asked the question that people like me have been thinking:  Why do we “have” to bail out the automakers?  Why couldn’t we just let GM fail?  Two of the reasons the talk show host cited was because it would damage the US economy too much and because no parts could be made for existing cars.

    First of all. What?  The economy is already a gaping bleeding wound, so what’s the point of putting a zillion dollar band-aid on it only to rip it off two minutes later and apply another one.  Sometimes wounds heal up much better if you just leave them alone.

    The bailouts might alleviate some pain in the short term, but I don’t want to be the generation that goes down in the history books as having put a financial cement yoke around the necks of their great-grandchildren.  Instead of the Greatest Generation we will be known as the Stupidest Generation or the Greediest Generation. The sins of the father indeed.

    To his second point, I would bet my hat that if GM (or the automaker of your choice) closed its doors, that 100 companies would pop up overnight to make parts for existing cars and wouldn’t that be good for the economy?  My theory is that when big companies fail, opportunities are created for smaller, smarter, more agile companies.  That’s how supply and demand works.

    My third point is this:  I think economies that hinge on a handful of  bloated mega companies are dangerous.  They don’t allow Financial Darwinism to work because we can’t (or won’t) allow them to fail — and that is fertile ground for greed, corruption, mismanagement and criminally ridiculous executive compensation packages.  It is not an environment that brings out the best in people, but the worst.  It makes them untouchable as is evidenced by the “retention bonuses” given to the very people who couldn’t be trusted to manage the companies in the first place.

    I say let Goliath fall and let the sound of his corpse hitting the dirt be a warning to all.

    56 Comments »

    1. Nette says:

      I whole-heartedly agree. It’s the survival of the fittest, not the fattest!

      March 21st, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    2. Cheri says:

      I often have the same type of questions with the same type of attitude.

      UNTIL my dad, a GM retiree, pointed something out. If GM, and similar companies fail, all those people who spent their entire adult lives working for the company will most likely loose their retirement/pensions.

      A tough pill to swallow when you look at it that way, but I don’t know what the right answer is.

      * * *
      I don’t know what the right answer is either. And I do have sympathy for people like your dad. In the currenty economy everyone’s 401Ks and pensions are at risk. I just don’t see how handing over massive amounts of no-strings attached unaccounted for money to these big companies which have already proven to be irresponsible is going to help.

      Perhaps the assets and bonuses of the culpable execs should be seized, the company sold off as parts and all put into a pool that would fund the retirement packages to some degree. It is a tough pill to swallow, people will be hurt. It is the price of foolishness.

      I think one thing that needs to be changed is that unskilled assembly line people shouldn’t be making $60/hour (or whatever the amount is) and execs shouldn’t be getting 30X (or whatever that number is) average worker pay. but mostly, I think it’s bad for the economy to be reliant upon a few mega corporations. With the guarantee of a taxpayer bailout they have no incentive to be light and sharp.

      I don’t really have answers, just questions. ~AM

      March 21st, 2009 at 7:06 pm

    3. Becca says:

      Ooooh! Nice thinking. I hadn’t thought about little companies springing up to make parts. You are so right! My dad is hunting for a 50s pickup for my driving pleasure. That way, we figure James or I can just stick our heads in, wiggle some wires, read a book or so and know just how to fix it!

      ***
      Or just kick it. That’s what I do when stuff breaks. ~AM

      March 21st, 2009 at 7:30 pm

    4. Shalee says:

      I whole-heartedly agree with your thoughts and questions. Though I know that not everything will be fun or easy for anyone if the big companies go under, but I think it would be less painful for us now than it will be for the future generations.

      These “quick fixes” are anything but that. I have no faith in our leadership; neither do I have huge faith that society will start behaving as it should have behaved long ago: to live within their means and have self control.

      Until someone chops the head off of greed, selfishness and outlandish salaries, we’re the slaves to its whims.

      I do, however, have faith that God will provide for our needs. I need to make sure that I don’t make our wants needs and be satisfied with whatever he sends our way.

      March 21st, 2009 at 8:08 pm

    5. Meg @ Spicy Magnolia says:

      Well said. The direction of big government that we’re headed in and not letting institutions fail that just need to fail is, I think, going to come back and bite us. Why is that so hard for some people to see though?

      March 21st, 2009 at 8:28 pm

    6. Tom says:

      I sometimes think the same thing: just let it collapse. Given the current trend, I think it’s inevitable. It’s only a matter of time. We have resources, workers and talent – but for most of our products, we’re not competing in the global market. But fortunately we still have those resources, so we’re not going to starve and die as a nation, if we’re willing to work hard. We don’t rely on imports to survive.

      March 21st, 2009 at 9:00 pm

    7. Amy says:

      I couldn’t agree with you more.

      I think part of the problem is that most Americans believe that if GM (or the other failing automakers) files bankruptcy, they will cease to exist and parts will be unavailable. That is simply not true.

      If GM filed bankruptcy, the executives would be forced to reorganize the failing company. The company would, in turn, be infinitely stronger and more competitive on a global level as a result. Continuing to throw good money after bad doesn’t help.

      I read an interesting editorial by Mitt Romney on this subject last fall. He grew up in Detroit as a son of one of the auto giants. His perspective was quite interesting.

      After a little digging I was able to find the link. I think it is worth the read.

      http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/19/opinion/19romney.html

      * * *

      Thanks for the link – definitely well worth the time to click over and read.

      March 21st, 2009 at 9:24 pm

    8. Vail in MS says:

      I so agree with what you have said. I can’t help but think that all those Washington and Wall Street folks are sitting there making all these decisions and none of them are sitting in the shoes of the average American nor have they ever been there. They continue to vote for their pay raises. They are not cutting back or going without anything for the most part yet they continue to give away our hard earned money and the the hard earned money our kids and grandkids have yet to see. There is something so wrong with that picture. If I make dumb decisions and do unethical or even illegal things and get caught, I must pay the consequences — yet for the most part they don’t even get their hand slapped. Makes no sense.

      March 21st, 2009 at 9:36 pm

    9. Julia says:

      Well said. I couldn’t agree more!

      March 21st, 2009 at 9:52 pm

    10. Milissa says:

      I sooooo agree with you. I keep hearing “too big to fail.” There is no such thing as “too big to fail.” If you get that big, it just takes more bad decisions before you sink the ship…you know…easier to sink a canoe than a battleship…these battleships are going under and as painful as it will be, we are just delaying the inevitable with these bailouts. And the people in Washington are throwing around really large numbers like it’s nothing…a billion seconds ago it was the year 1959. How long will it take us to pay this money back? I don’t have children, but I did just become an aunt. And I worry about what my niece’s quality of life will be when she grows up. I’m in health care sales…and the generation of kids now is the first generation with a lower life expectancy than their parents. (Due to our unhealthy lifestyle ie. obesity, diabetes, lack of physical exercise, and all the complications that go with.) Now they will also be the 1st generation in a long time with a lower standard of living than their parents. It makes me sad.

      March 21st, 2009 at 9:56 pm

    11. Marian says:

      Yep. Is it better to go through the pain of surgery or avoid it by letting the cancer spread?

      March 21st, 2009 at 10:01 pm

    12. Donna W says:

      Yep. It would be hard on all of us. It could make my husband retire sooner than he intended. But my parents lived through a depression, and I believe we could do the same.

      March 21st, 2009 at 10:10 pm

    13. Julie at Elisharose says:

      Amen and amen.

      March 21st, 2009 at 10:12 pm

    14. Kacey says:

      AMEN! The only thing that I have a difference about is….what the dickens is our Congress thinking? They are passing laws that are unconstitutional and nobody seems to be pointing that out to them. I do believe that someone elected President Obama to usher in Socialism and One World Government. I am so sorry for my kids and grands and feel completely powerless to stop the whole thing.

      March 21st, 2009 at 10:19 pm

    15. Shelly W. says:

      Wonderful post! You have just said in much simpler terms what my husband (an economist) says every day.

      And Amen to Kacey’s comment above mine. What Congress is doing (limiting bonuses on execs) is unconstitutional. And how on earth does that motivate future generations to excel and try do do more for themselves and this country? Oh, it all just discourages, irritates, and frustrates me.

      I worry for the future of this country.

      * * *
      On the other hand, does it not make sense that if a company is giving out bonuses that maybe they should be precluded from getting any taxpayer help? Are bonuses not for jobs well done? ~AM

      March 21st, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    16. suburbancorrespondent says:

      If we were to let them fail, provisions (safety nets) would have to be put in place to protect/help people innocently hurt by the economic disaster. In other words, government would still be spending the money; but it would be on the victims and not the perpetrators of all this incompetence (to put it nicely). If you have never been in an area with 20-25 percent unemployment (and a state like Michigan could end up that way, if your plan were to be followed), you do not understand how dangerous a situation it is – socially and politically. You would be paving the way for true socialism by letting so many people suffer while you wait for the “long run” to straighten things out.

      In addition, government intervention in and of itself is not bad. It depends upon what sort of intervention occurs. For example, there has always been a form of corporate welfare, yet no one makes a big stink about it. Yet they complain about food stamps and WIC. If gov’t had chosen to intervene wisely in our markets the last 8 years, by enacting regulations on the lending and financial industries that would have limited just how much they could gamble with our money, we wouldn’t be in this mess right now.

      As always, the middle way is best. Total free-market capitalism could lead to chaos, anarchy, and (ironically) socialism; true Socialism could stifle entrepreneurship and individual accomplishment. Our president (who has been placed in an almost impossible situation) is trying to walk a middle road: gov’t regulation that would prevent the capitalist excesses that have hurt our economy, social handouts (because that is what they are) to the worst affected so that they can remain productive members of our society and therefore cost us less in the long run, and long-term projects that could hopefully turn our economy in a new direction. Gov’t incentives to individuals to start up new businesses in a faltering economy are not socialism; they are trying to encourage smart capitalism that would make our economy healthy again, as opposed to the loot and burn capitalism that is destroying the hopes and dreams of so many.

      * * *

      I’m not sure I agree with your assertion that “total free-market capitalism could lead to chaos” – historically there is no evidence of that whereas there is substantial evidence that socialism doesn’t work and does lead to social apathy and indifference. I can’t remember the name of the Russian who said, “They pretend to pay us and we pretend to work.” Socialism at it’s finest.

      The role of the American government in the corporate sector should be only to level the playing field with appropriate laws and regulations so that no one person or family has an unfair advantage and becomes a Robber Baron. The US government should not be in the business of bailing out. ~AM

      March 21st, 2009 at 11:23 pm

    17. toni says:

      My dh works in the airline industry, which has been DIRECTLY impacted by;
      -the ripple effect of 9/11 (his airline is one of the two carriers whose airplanes were hijacked that day)
      -poor enconomy (declining revenues)
      -operating costs are HIGHLY impacted by and directly related to the cost of fuel

      Did our government bail the airlines out? No. More like, “Sorry for your luck. Hope you can be creative enough to survive.” And the industry HAS been creative (dear Lord, that’s an understatement). So I stand in complete agreement with you. Let Goliath fall.
      Blessings,
      ~Toni~

      March 21st, 2009 at 11:24 pm

    18. suburbancorrespondent says:

      That said, I am as pissed off as anyone about the bonuses – I blame Paulson and the Congress – how could they not have put all sorts of conditions on the TARP money before they handed it over? How stupid is that?

      March 21st, 2009 at 11:24 pm

    19. Stephanie says:

      Isn’t that what we do with our teenagers and adult children? Let them make their mistakes, be there to comfort them, but let them experience the consequences of their actions? I believe when it applies to children, we call it “tough love”.

      I doubt there is a term for big corporations.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 1:06 am

    20. Amanda says:

      AMEN SISTER!!!!!

      It seems common sense isn’t so common anymore!

      March 22nd, 2009 at 1:54 am

    21. jen says:

      Agreed.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 4:51 am

    22. Teri from Indiana says:

      You are so right. What gets me is that they handed all that money to the very people who mismanaged the companies in the first place and trusted them to do better?!?!? That was just stupidity at it’s finest.
      AIG……..165 MILLION dollars in bonuses……..what doing what? Running the company in the red?
      This all seems too much like giving the drug addict a crack pipe, telling them to try again only this time don’t get hooked.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 5:46 am

    23. HarryJacksMom says:

      AMEN! All the protectionism is a dangerous thing, IMHO. Thankfully, scary times often bring out the best in people….survival of the fittest, and all 😉 Here’s hoping some sanity sneaks its way back into the discussion before we get too far away from our American ideals!

      March 22nd, 2009 at 7:02 am

    24. Brigitte says:

      I agree with you, AM. Even with massive unemployment (I’m right by an area with 10% and rising already, anyway). Just a couple more points to fuel things . .

      Sadly, this kind of stuff has already been going on a while. People just seem to be noticing it more now. The Insurance company I worked for blew up years ago in an Enron-esque debacle and everyone lost their 401ks. But nobody heard about it or cared, as the company wasn’t as huge as GM and it happened BEFORE Enron.

      I once saw a documentary that had a segment on the wonderful public transit trains, trolleys and buses that used to be everywhere. Then GM bought a bunch of them just so they could rip all the public transportation out and FORCE everyone to buy their cars. Maybe the government should use the bailout money to fund more public transit instead of funneling it into exec bonuses for GM.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 8:21 am

    25. Lucy says:

      I just heard on the news this morning while I was still lolling in bed that GM wants more money now. Something is very wrong with this country. For one thing, it got too big and too rich too fast. I don’t see any way that this will ever turn around. But then I’m looking at the glass half empty. Seems like it would help if ‘they’ stopped pumping our money into other countries who never pay us back. But that’s a no-brainer.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 9:15 am

    26. Iota says:

      It seems so random. Why are these companies and banks bailed out? That’s such a dangerous precedent. Why these ones, and not others in the future? Why these big ones now, and not the small or medium-sized ones?

      I also want to know why money is given to mortgage lenders, who have mismanaged, rather than to mortgage payers. If the money was used to subsidise mortgages, then individuals would have more money in their pockets to go shopping with (good for the economy), and it would be easier for first-timers to get mortgages (good for the economy). So why not subsidise the individual mortgage, rather than just give a big dollop of cash to the companies who’ve got us into this mess in the first place?

      March 22nd, 2009 at 9:30 am

    27. edj says:

      Yeah. I think it will be a lot harder to let them fail, but it will be better in the long run. Capitalism is based on companies being profitable and competitive; if we bail out companies that aren’t, where is their incentive?

      March 22nd, 2009 at 9:56 am

    28. Pam says:

      I wish I could high five with you all but my grown children work at a small auto parts plant, not making the big bucks that the GM workers do. The ripple effect of the auto crisis is just staggering here in my part of Ohio. To say just let them fail, is not just letting GM fail…families are suffering. I personally see the real faces behind the crisis, through no fault of their own.

      * * *
      I know. I have a lot of sympathy for your family and all the rest of us poor schmucks who are paying the price for the foolishness of a few who seem to be able to go on their merry way via private jet. And understand, I’m not talking “just” about the auto industry – it’s AIG and others.

      Having said that, handing over more money will not solve this problem for your kids or me. The money is not changing anything. It’s not even stopping the hemorrhaging. The top people are continuing to take their bonuses while your kids are living on beans. It’s not working.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 10:43 am

    29. Terry says:

      I hope it is okay to chime in,one of the thoughts I keep struggling with is why are we allowing Government to control our money it is up to the individual to choose for better or worse what his fate will be,it should not be wall street, Obama, a union or anyone other than ourselves responsible for our choices that affect us and our children..We are still being held accountable for their choices as well as our own, there must be a time of becoming personally responsible for all of us including Obama,unions,and large corporations but it should not be the responsibility of the federal government to mandate or control .That belongs to the people as it should. Maturity is a good thing.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 11:04 am

    30. Shoe says:

      Well, I can say that the money I had in stocks is worthless right now compared to what I bought them at. I don’t like the fact that my bank has lost several millions either. I worry about Nationalizing the banks and where will my money go. Get the mattress and a good knife out. The “Great Society” has come back to bite us just as my teachers in school said it would. I my children and perhaps grand will pay for it NOW.
      I know people who have been storing food so when the crash comes they will have enough. I hope that is unnecessary but we’ll see I believe.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 11:12 am

    31. mythoughtsonthat says:

      “Sometimes wounds heal up much better if you just leave them alone.” Such a great point.
      And I say let those big companies fail- why should they get a bail out and we don’t? No one’s going to bail us out if we fail….

      March 22nd, 2009 at 11:21 am

    32. Janis says:

      Every morning when I read the latest news on bailouts and bonuses I can’t help but picture a gigantic boil, ready to explode.

      I cannot believe that the people who receive these obscene bonuses post bailout have the gall to hold out their hands.

      I see greed top to bottom in our society. I think that it will eventually steal our freedom. The masses are screaming save us, now, right this moment, and do not think of the future consequences. We have forgotten how to figure out our own problems and expect the government to do it for us. Sometimes failure is the painful outcome.

      I can feel aspects of Socialism seeping into my bones already.

      AM, thanks for bringing another current topic up for discussion.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 11:30 am

    33. grammyscraps says:

      I’d like to let them all go down the drain, too, but can you imagine the domino effect? All the companies that supply goods to those big companies…the job losses would be historical and throw us into a true depression. No easy answers, certainly not quick ones. All this was ignored for too many years for it to be repaired quickly. There will be a lot of suffering and belt-tightening before we see light again.

      * * *
      We survived one depression and emerged better for it and we would survive another. We would have to plant gardens and learn to be resourceful and not wasteful. A natural and healthy socialism would occur where churches and people helped each other out of the wellspring of love from their hearts. Government mandated socialism doesn’t work because the government has no heart, it’s an institution. It would be hard, very hard, especially given the comforts to which we’ve become accustomed.

      Also, don’t you think that smaller companies would fill the vacuum? America is full of bright and industrious individuals. I don’t know, but it seems like it presents as many opportunities as problems to me. But as I said, my thoughts are not well-thought-out nor do I have any expertise in this area. 🙂

      March 22nd, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    34. jean says:

      While I don’t know enough about current financial crisis, I do know that it isn’t working. I liked your Goliath analogy.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 12:16 pm

    35. Pam says:

      Completely understand everyone’s outrage, we little guys are just as outraged at the ‘behind the scenes financial failure’ of the auto giants. But, if this were your family, your job, your children and grandchildren, you would most certainly see things differently. It would be nice to just get other jobs…in some areas, everything revolves around the auto industry. When thousands are on unemployment and other government help, the taxpayers will be paying one way or another. People just want to work.

      * * *
      Pam, that’s the point. It is my family, my children, my grandchildren. It is everyone, every tax payer down to the next generation. We can not continue down this road. The bailouts are another step down the wrong road. The automakers need to radically change their business model. If not, the collapse is not if but when. Without swift and radical change, the bailouts only briefly delay the inevitable.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    36. Lyn Piper says:

      AMEN a million times AMEN!! It is so frustrating to see the money we have worked for to build up a comfortable retirement be taken away from us. Thousands and thousands of dollars. I believe in consequences to actions. Let Goliath fall! The companies have become so big, they really think they won’t fall. I say the bigger they are the harder they fall. And we do need to be strong enough to know what to do to make things like that happen. Even if we are one little boy….named David.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 1:08 pm

    37. Wendy says:

      AMEN!!!!! Let the free market work!

      March 22nd, 2009 at 3:36 pm

    38. Johanna says:

      Very well said indeed! So when will you become a lobbyist ; )

      March 22nd, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    39. First Born at 40 says:

      And why is the current administration pushing unionization by taking the anonymity away from the voting process?? I say the time for unions has passed. We have plenty of regulations to keep workers safe now. The unions have become the 800 lb gorilla in the room – staring malevolently at elected officials and hitting his hand with his fist…because so many elected officials have taken campaign money from unions and then have to dance to the tune of the piper. That’s another reason why elected officials are opting for the bailout…in my opinion.

      March 22nd, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    40. LIB says:

      Hear hear! Preach it sista!

      March 22nd, 2009 at 5:33 pm

    41. Beverlydru says:

      The reason that smart, logical, common-sense thinkers that communicate well (like you and me) are not in political office is because that system has also been given over to greed and corruption. He who has the most money wins the seat in the House or Senate. ARGGH… it’s almost enough to make me want to stick my head in the sand. (But I can’t of course.)

      Well said, I totally agree.

      * * *

      There are many reasons I wouldn’t be elected to political office but I can assure it’s not because I’m smart. The other three points would be open to a debate I wouldn’t want to have. 🙂

      March 22nd, 2009 at 8:58 pm

    42. Shelly W. says:

      I just feel like I have to add another comment to this debate. My perspective on the bonus situation is a little different, and since you’ve fueled the fire, so to speak, AM, and since I have no other outlet, I’d like to add two or three more cents. Hope that’s o.k.

      A few commenters have mentioned bonuses, and your comment back to me alluded to bonuses not coming from tax payer dollars. While I agree–those folks at AIG should NOT have gotten those bonuses on taxpayer dollars–it comes back to Congress and their lack of oversight of the situation. They were given an 800-page document (when they were voting on the bailout) and were then told they would vote on it in 12 hours. What?! Who could read that in its entirety? Nobody. And so the bill passed and nobody checked to see if those AIG people would be getting their bonuses which they were allowed based on contracts they held. Like I said, I don’t like it either, but I also don’t like Congress stepping in like a big bully and telling anyone that their contract is now null and void just because Congress doesn’t like it. That’s illegal.

      I just have to say something about the bank situation too because someone commented about the bank bailout–(i.e. “How come they get bailed out and we don’t?”) My husband is a banker, and believe me, they aren’t all rich. They aren’t all “Wall Street fat cats,” but the way bankers are villified these days you’d think they were all just terrible people out to take your taxpayer money. That’s not the way it is at all. When the bailout took place last fall, banks were FORCED to take TARP money because the government thought it would be the best way to stimulate the economy. My husband’s bank didn’t need nor want the money, but they took it as a gesture of goodwill toward the government. Now the government wants to change the rules in the middle of the game. They want to limit bonuses and tax those bonuses out the wazzoo. And now they want to limit my husband’s (and our household’s) pay! I’d say Capitalism is slipping away by the minute! It makes me want to cry when I see, from the inside, what’s happening, especially in the banking industry.

      I go back to what I wrote earlier. The incentive for young people today to “reach for the stars” as people used to is now gone. When government starts limiting the potential of its citizens, all incentive is gone, and that’s not good for our economy, our country, or our future.

      * * *

      You know I love you Shelley, but our idea of “limiting potential” is different. If bilking the US taxpayers is legal and bankrupting the country can be termed as reaching for the stars, then something is broken. A select few walking away with tax-payer funded fortunes while the multitudes starve? These absurd comp packages/golden parachutes may be legal and it may be reaching for the stars but it is immoral and it is wrong. It doesn’t seem to me that the value of the exec and his comp package is commensurate with the health of the company – obviously. The two should be tied. If I work hard in school, I get an A. If I goof off, I flunk — it should be about performance.

      Here’s the thing, and I know you think I’m vilifying bankers, and I’m not. In general. Only those bankers (and execs of any industry) who took tax payer money to fund their golden parachutes courtesy of the taxpayer after their companies failed. Reach for the stars indeed, but you are not allowed to stand on my 401-K to do it. I think execs are entitled to all the legal contractual perks they can get, until I have to pay for them. Where is their incentive to keep their company healthy?

      As I’ve discovered as of late, legal and contractual doesn’t necessarily mean ethical.

      March 23rd, 2009 at 8:56 am

    43. tami says:

      I am SO with you on this!! But it doesn’t sounds like “any”body (you know, the any bodies who make these decisions – care what we think. Let’s keep thinking anyhow!!!

      March 23rd, 2009 at 11:31 am

    44. Sally says:

      While I don’t necessarily agree with bailouts, I am concerned about the auto industry failing. My husband works for a Honda supplier, (which supplies parts for Honda) and his hours have been cut and he has also had a 30% reduction in wages in the last 3 months due to the state of the economy. It has been a struggle for us financially.
      He lost his previous job (due to the company closing) prior to getting his current job at with Honda 2 1/2 years ago, and now he is worried about losing his job again so soon. He has been under a lot of stress which is affecting him physically. I worry about him and about how to pay the bills.

      March 23rd, 2009 at 2:04 pm

    45. Heidi says:

      Just as the New Deal prolonged the depression, falsely propping up big companies just prolongs our suffering now. We could let the wound heal, as you purport, or just keep salving and bandaging it until it is one giant, infectious hole, causing pain across the whole body (country). Capitalism is made to correct these things automatically, but when the government decides it needs to play “Board of Directors” for these failing giants, things get messed up. Case Study A: AIG. Case Study B: GM.

      As you pointed out to SC, there isn’t any historical evidence to support moving toward socialism, yet here we go, revving our engines, with just enough fuel left to propel ourselves off the cliff. I maintain my hope that Texas will secede (under Ron Paul’s direction) and that I will move there and acclimate to the heat. Or…that a conservative alien will overtake P-BO’s body and direct him to use appearances with Jay Leno to renounce his old ways.

      March 23rd, 2009 at 3:06 pm

    46. Stretch Mark Mama says:

      Man, I totally agree. It’s like a forest fire. Seems bad, but is really quite good for the land.

      I WILL say, though, that I’m an overly-biased Honda owner, though, so I might not think the same if it was THEIR company that was crumbling. 🙂

      March 23rd, 2009 at 5:20 pm

    47. Shelly W. says:

      “Here’s the thing, and I know you think I’m vilifying bankers, and I’m not. In general. Only those bankers (and execs of any industry) who took tax payer money to fund their golden parachutes courtesy of the taxpayer after their companies failed. Reach for the stars indeed, but you are not allowed to stand on my 401-K to do it. I think execs are entitled to all the legal contractual perks they can get, until I have to pay for them. Where is their incentive to keep their company healthy?”

      I completely agree with this. I think we’re just talking about two different issues.

      * * *
      I think so too. 🙂

      March 23rd, 2009 at 11:13 pm

    48. Carrie says:

      Will you please run for president?

      March 24th, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    49. Sarah says:

      here, here…couldn’t agree with you more!

      March 24th, 2009 at 5:49 pm

    50. Tina says:

      As someone who lives in what was labeled one of the top three fasted dying towns in the United States, I hate the whole mess. One of the big three is here in my town and so is an auto part supplier that used to be part of the big three. My husband and I do not personally work for either, but my father does. My husband has many family members who have worked for both and retired from two of the big three in the past. I live in one of those towns where the Union job is the best thing you can get (I hold sarcasm) and grew up with a father who was salary not union. I saw all sides. Do I think they should fall? Oh probably. My heart wishes they would not. I hate it. Most of these people are honestly just the little peons that work for these places. Not big dollar lined execs. The ones that will loose everything? They are the peons. So if this nation is supposed to be protecting the peons…well…they don’t they have to do something? And if we don’t try, won’t we all end up on welfare? Well not all of us, but you know what I mean. The ripple, will hit more. I keep trying to sell more and more things off. Can’t seem to do it. There are companies within 40 minutes of us. Foreign automakers, Subaru, Isuzu..(I think another also??? not sure) They are not doing great either. Honda even made cuts. We talk about looking for ways to conserve fuel…so we pay $4 at the pump (haven’t for a while, but have heard rumors again as it gets to jump up and down like crazy) What if you have a farm? You need a truck..sorry a little tiny mid-sized Sudan is not going to haul your equipment around for you. So here I sit, Midwest America, in the middle of farm land and auto makers and WISH a bailout will work? Will it? Probably not…but raising gas prices won’t either. Letting oil companies show a $3 billion profit (that was 2007 I think profit, not sure of 2008) when I barely can buy groceries because of the amount of gas needed to get to the grocers and work? That seems so silly. We blame all it on auto, on banks, and I hear a lot about oil, but really it is about and entire social system that already thinks we deserve it all and deserve it NOW! So give it to me. When we can change that, well we might learn and grow…and probably, most likely it will take and entire economic collapse and we better hope some other nation does not come on in and take advantage of that……I know it is a whole gloom and doom projection in what I ranted on….And probably more confusing than anything else, but some days it looks pretty gloomy in the real world.

      March 25th, 2009 at 12:50 am

    51. Tina says:

      oops..sorry for spelling errors, I just saw I spelt ripple, wripple, I am sure there are more. 🙁 Please know I did not mean to make the errors, just had the urge to pass on my sarcasm and confused thoughts from my heart….thanks for bringing this up. And in case I did not say it…I mostly agree..I just really hate it. 🙁

      * * *
      No problem on the spelling errors. We all make them. And because I typos give me the hives, I fixed them. I’m sorry you are hurting. America needs radical change, but I think the kind Obama has in mind and the kind I’m thinking of are two radically different things. ~AM

      March 25th, 2009 at 12:52 am

    52. Jill says:

      I have to agree. No matter who is “saved” these days, it seems someone else is sent to the slaughter. And…the big question is when is enough enough? And then there’s always the “back story” on all of these failings and bailouts and mergers. And the finger pointing, and the politics…. it’s just so sad.

      March 25th, 2009 at 12:13 pm

    53. Common Mom says:

      Couldn’t have said it any better. It might just take a huge failure like that to wake everyone up . . . “we” Americans have been raised with a feeling of entitlement . . . “we” are not entitled to anything. You have to work at it. You have to learn from failures. You have to take responsibility.

      March 25th, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    54. Janna says:

      Bravo, well said, and AMEN!

      March 26th, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    55. Sylvia says:

      Amen! Preach it!

      March 29th, 2009 at 12:29 am

    56. Weekend Links « The Faery Inn… says:

      […] Let Goliath Fall ~ Antique Mommy […]

      April 17th, 2009 at 4:17 pm

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