Citing as inspiration the ravings of aggrieved hedge fund veep, tv “journalist,” and self-proclaimed everyman Rick Santelli, a bunch of Republico-“populist” types are going to be rallying at the State House on Tax Day.
These jokers are claiming the mantle of the silent majority, as they oppose a stimulus plan that a large majority of Americans supported. As Pat points out, these guys surely would have been Torries circa the late 1700s. We’d add that it’s hard to cry taxation without representation if your board of directors includes the governor’s wife.
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Well that guy is definitely a douchebag, but he does have some points. We wouldn’t be in this mess if people hadn’t signed mortgages that they couldn’t afford. We also wouldn’t be in this mess if people like him weren’t cramming loans down people’s throats for the last decade, or if regulation worked the way it’s supposed to. I was looking for a house in 2005 and I was ‘pre-approved’ for a mortgage that would have been 99.8% of my gross income when it ‘readjusted’.
If you got into a deal where you set yourself up for disaster… well, you’re an idiot. You shouldn’t be taking out quarter-million dollar loans unless you know how to read a contract and use a calculator. If you’re making (or buying) loans to those people… well, you’re an idiot too. Lastly, if you’re in the House or Senate and you see that idiots from the banking industry are making insane loans to idiots who think they can afford to live in a house that costs them more than 35% of their annual income, but you don’t do anything to stop it… You’re an idiot, and an asshole to boot.
Also, the idea that we’re going to be able to spend ourselves back to a ‘good place’ is just… Insane. It’s just not true. If the government happened to be sitting on a giant pile of money right now, I’d be all for spending it to keep the gears moving, but issuing -more debt- to keep the system working is not a reasonable or effective long-term solution to the problem. If ‘infrastructure spending on debt’ was a viable solution to our economic problems, Rhode Island would be at the forefront of the recovery; instead, were at the back of the line.
As for ‘most people supporting the stimulus’… Well, most people don’t understand macroeconomics, the money multiplier, finance, or anything of the sort! The masses will -always- want more government spending, because the masses will -always- perceive themselves as overtaxed. This is not news:
“[Democracy] can only exist until the majority discovers it can [loan itself money] out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits…” –Alexander Fraser Tytler
The ‘savings rate’ in January was close to 5%, up from 1% (or even -1%) before the economy hit the fan. The amount the average person has to save in their life to retire is about 15%, so the economy is -sucking- when we’re -still spending too much-. What we need to do is incentivize savings (tax credits for middle and lower class folks who save 5% of income annually?) so that we run this country on a citizenry of people -with money- instead of running it on a citizenry’s -debt-. Are we -really- advocating debt-spending when only one out of twenty workers in the modern workforce are adequately prepared for retirement?!
I would imagine that there would actually be a -lot- less crime if the middle and lower classes started working off of savings instead of debt again, and the banks would be in much better shape, since all those individual deposits would shore-up the banking fundamentals much better than giant dollar-deflating injections from the Fed.