Bailout Nation

By Greg Hunter’s  

While I was watching the wall to wall Inauguration coverage of Barack Obama there was a “man in the street” segment on one of the networks where people were being asked “What should the new President do about the troubled economy?”   One man said “He should give money to all the homeowners who are in trouble and give some money to other homeowners too.”  I think the idea of bailing out anyone and everyone is now in the vernacular of American society.  How do you suppose people are getting the idea that everyone should get a financial rescue?  Could it be story after story in the news everyday about how Citigroup, Bank of America or a variety of other banks are getting hundreds of billions of dollars in cash and government  backing to keep them afloat?  Maybe it’s the 200 billion given to AIG to keep it from causing systemic failure.  It just couldn’t be the nearly 18 billion given to GM and Chrysler to keep them in business.  Bailout fever is spreading like kudzu.  The list of businesses and industries in need of a lifeline are like snowflakes in Colorado.  Home builders, airlines, insurance companies, money market funds, states (41 are in financial trouble) and hundreds of cities around the nation are facing big budget shortfalls.  Is that going to turn into some sort of bailout too?  I was in North Carolina two weeks ago.  While watching local television I heard the new Governor, Bev Perdue, say the state was 2 billion dollars in the red and that without federal bailout money there would have to be drastic cuts to the state budget.  She was in Washington trying to get a piece of the TARP money and, why not, every other state governor is doing the exact same thing!!!   Governors from around the country are asking the Federal government for a trillion dollars so they’ll not have to make some very hard choices.

With all this bailout talk, another word is starting to make it into the vernacular…Inflation!!!  Before the Geithner confirmation hearing, former Fed Chief Paul Volcker, who I like to call “the Real Maestro,” gave a short testimony to vouch for tax dodging “Turbo” Tim Geithner. (He used Turbo Tax to do his returns.)   The most newsworthy thing said were the few lines Volcker slipped in about his concern about inflation because of all the bailout money being created for the banks. No news organization I know of reported that little tidbit.  Volcker’s fear of inflation should have been the real headline for the hearing because “Turbo” Tim was already a lock for Treasury Secretary. Later that night on Bloomberg Television, former SEC Chairman Harvey Pitt said he saw “no way” that there is not going to be inflation given the massive amount of money that will be spent for bailouts and economic stimulus.  You won’t see that sound bite anywhere in the news either.   When you talk about inflation you are really talking about consequences to monetary policy.  Inflation was so feared by the founding fathers they wrote in the constitution that money shall be of “Gold and Silver.”  That meant no fiat currency for economic stimulus packages and of course bailouts.  We are a long way from the founding fathers and their kind of thinking.  Today the government can print money until it runs out of trees, but what most people do not realize is there is an aftereffect for that kind of financial engineering.   America has swept aside any talk of moral hazard and is embracing the toxic idea of a “bailout nation” for which the consequences risk our very survival as an independent country.


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