Ruby Ramblings

Bail us out
January 30, 2009, 2:36 am
Filed under: Books, Politics | Tags: , , ,

I could go on for hours, but I won’t, about how the current US government bailouts are really one of the giant signs that the overarching American mentality needs a giant overhaul. Keep the people undereducated, con them into taking bad loans and consuming so much people have to buy storage units to keep the stuff they can’t fit into their houses they can’t afford, and then give giant rewards and bailouts to the companies running it all.

I heard a great idea on John Stewart last night. Use the bailout money to pay off outstanding consumer debt. Spread it out among families and give it to the banks to pay off car loans, student loans, and mortgages. Get the people out from under the crushing consumer debt that keeps most Americans immobilized (and hence depressed, uninterested in the rest of the world, undereducated, overworked, underinsured…..). This would put money back into the banks, and create a huge sigh of relief and rise in this apparently ever important “consumer confidence”. Sounds socialist. Maybe, but I don’t see how giving money to the people who already have way too much of it and handle it extremely poorly is going to fix anything.

There was an interesting story on NPR today about John Keynes, the person that the Obama administration has based their economic plan on. This is not a very reassuring thing. I don’t know enough about economics to know if his 1938 theory is a good one. He claims that the best way to pull a society out of a depression is to pour a huge influx of government money into the economy. Using his calculations, a minimum of 650 billion would need to be spent to pull the US out of it’s current pile of quicksand.

What worries me the most though, is that this man believed firmly in eugenics, had no respect for the working class, was a blatant bigot, and believed only men who had graduated from Cambridge university were intelligent enough to run anything of importance. What I want to know is when are we going to start looking toward leaders who are admirable in their entirety. I’m not interested in people who may have been brilliant economic theorists, but would have secretly lauded the holocaust.

What is it going to take before there is a mental shift where this country embraces the notion that if you want a good life, you have to live a good life. You can’t lie, cheat, and steal your way through life and expect to sail through with no mishaps. I would argue the entire consumer, strip mall lifestyle is the embodiment of that. Americans use far more resources, then most of the rest of the countries in the world COMBINED. These resources do not come from our own soil. It would behoove us as a whole to think about where they do come from.

Keynes most prominent work on economics  The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money (Great Minds Series) .

Good story on featuring William Grieder author of One World Ready or Not: The Manic Logic of Global Capitalism and The Soul of Capitalism: Opening Paths to a Moral Economy.

New book from progressive economist Paul Krugman The Return of Depression Economics and the Crisis of 2008.