The finger pointing has only just begun, and there is reason this is so. People across this country have been devastated by the collapse of our economy. The natural stages of grief have kicked in. The initial stage is denial (John McCain said the fundamentals of the economy are sound). Denial is followed quickly by blaming, negotiating, anger and acceptance. We the people are doing all of the stages of grief every day, over and over. So where can we point the finger of guilt?
There is an ideology that is to blame. Simply put, it is called the Republican Economic ideal, elevated to insanity by Ronald Reagan, and executed in real time by George Bush and Dick Cheney. The ideology is simply this: Business is good, Government is bad. It is the same simple mindedness we saw in the Republican foreign policy that lead to global disrespect of America.
How can one be so bold as to blame the Republicans? – Well look at the facts. Former President Bill Clinton signed massive deregulation laws in the late 1990’s. Why would a man of his intellect do this? That was simply a case of political expediency. One might say political cowardice. The Republicans controlled the Congress. President Clinton compromised and negotiated with the Congress. This writer believes that Clinton gave up too much. But the stage was set.
President George Worthless Bush took office in January of 2001. The top down attitude permeated the government – from the Congress to the Supreme Court, to Greenspan at the FDIC, to the Securities and Exchange Commission. Greenspan said last October, “Those of us who have looked to the self-interest of lending institutions to protect shareholders’ equity, myself included, are in a state of shocked disbelief.” He was saying: we had faith in the CEO’s of the companies, we had faith that they would not abuse the lack of regulation or investigation.
That is the problem. The attitude that discarding the reigns of business regulation would produce profit, thus create more investments in business, thus create more jobs, thus create more consumer spending, thus create a growing economy. The bright eyed wackos of Bush, Cheney, and Greenspan completely and totally ignored the age old concept of individual greed. This is not complicated.
Dick Cheney said in an interview yesterday that the economic crisis is not the fault of the Bush Administration. Well what did you think Cheney would say? Has this man ever been honest about anything? Has this man ever owned the errors of his ways? He shot his friend in the face – then blamed the shotgun.
Greenspan is much more difficult to attack than Bush and Cheney. Greenspan admits that he is shocked. Bush and Cheney are not shocked. That is because Bush and Cheney went out of their way to make sure that Federal Regulators stayed out of the way of profitable business. The CEO’s of banks and insurance companies took risks that were beyond Greenspan’s contemplation. But they were not personal risks to the CEO’s – they were assured of their multi-million dollar bonuses whatever happened to the company.
We can blame AIG, or Bank of America, or the SEC, or Freddie Mace, or Fannie Mae, or Bernie Madoff – they all had a role in the devastation. But the real blame lies with George W. Bush. He fomented the attitude of “Happy Days are Here Again” for financial institution. Bush gave a wink and a nod to Wall Street and said, Git R Done.
Bush, Cheney, and Greenspan would probably all tell us that they believe in God. But I would bet what is left in my 401K that they lock their car.