Two divergent opinions on the U.S. Government’s “rescue plan” of our financial system.
First, former Governor Mike Huckabee on his blog on Tuesday said:
Frankly, I’m disappointed and disgusted with my own Republican party as I watch them attempt to strong-arm a bailout of some of America’s biggest corporations by asking the taxpayers to suck up the staggering results of the hubris, greed, and arrogance of those who sought to make a quick buck by throwing the dice. They lost, but want the rest of us to cover their bets so they won’t be effected in their lavish lifestyles as they figure out how to spend their tens of millions and in some cases, hundreds of millions in bonuses and compensation which was their reward for not only sinking their companies, but basically doing the same to the entire American economy.
It’s especially disconcerting to see the very people who pilloried me during the Presidential campaign for being a “populist” and not “understanding Wall Street” to now line up like thirsty dogs at the Washington, D. C. water dish, otherwise known as Congress, and plead for help. I thought these guys were the smartest people in America! I thought that taxpayers like you and I were similar to the people at the U. N. who have no translator speaking into their headset – that we just needed to trust those that I called the power bunch in the “Wall Street to Washington axis of power.”
The idea of a government bailout in which we’d entrust $700 billion to one man without Congressional oversight or accountability is absurd. My party or not, that is insanity and I believe unconstitutional.
Chuck Colson in today’s Breakpoint commentary said:
Call it sticker shock. Across America, folks are outraged at the government’s rescue plan for the nation’s financial system. I understand—$700 billion is a lot of money.
But let’s get some perspective. Some estimate that the United States will spend more than $400 billion this year alone on foreign oil. So $700 billion is less than what we will be spending on foreign oil this year and next, putting money in the pockets of the likes of Saudi Arabia (which is an exporter of extremist Wahhabi Islam) and Venezuela (whose volatile leader, Hugo Chavez, makes no bones about hating the United States).
Talk about a transfer of wealth—it’s a bailout! Given the vast stores of oil off our shores and up north in Alaska, we don’t have to be pouring that much money overseas for oil. Finally, Congress has yielded to the will of the American public and has let the ban on offshore drilling expire. Good. Let’s start drilling and begin to make a dent in the $400 billion we send overseas each year.
That’s $400 billion that goes up in smoke, but in the rescue plan it is $700 billion actually invested in assets. That’s not a bailout. The government will be purchasing troubled mortgage-based assets at depressed prices. These are assets that are now currently clogging the nation’s credit system. And remember, if we don’t do this and the credit system shuts down, businesses and individuals will find it hugely difficult to get loans, and the economy will grind to a halt. The cost of such an event would be incalculable.
Colson goes on later to discuss opportunities that the Church has to minister to people during this crisis. Huckabee later shares some suggestions for Congress that he feels would help the economy out.
1. Eliminate ALL capital gains taxes and taxes on savings and dividends right now. Free up the capital and encourage investment. This is the kind of economic stimulus the Fair Tax would bring and if Congress is going to lose money, let them lose it with lower taxes, not with public dollar bailouts of private market mistakes.
2. Repeal Sarbanes/Oxley. It has failed. It was supposed to prevent this. It didn’t. Kill it
3. Demand that the executives who steered their ships into the ground be forced to pay back the losses of their companies. Of course, they can’t, so let them work and give back to the government and they can live like the people they put on the streets or kept there. It makes no sense to put them in jail—that’s just more they will cost you and me. I’d rather them go out and earn money—just not get to keep so much of it this time. I’m not talking about limiting CEO salaries—just those of the people who now are up in Washington begging for help because they ruined their companies.
What do you think about their statements? Where do you stand on this “rescue plan”? Also what do you think about Governor Huckabee’s suggestions?