I looked around Heritage today (well, cyberly speaking . . . I never made it to the Hill today) to see who was watching the hearings. Brian Darling, who monitors the Senate full-time (poor dear) was watching and reports:
Will these bailouts ever end? Apparently not if you watched the testimony in the Senate Banking Committee today.
As I watched the committee I was struck by ease that some senators put taxpayers on the hook for another bailout to the tune of $34 billion. Chairman of the committee, Senator Chris Dodd actually called this plan “modest” and made the argument that this bailout was OK, because President Bush provided far more aid to Bear Stearns, AIG, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and Citigroup. I guess $34 billion is the least we can give GM, Ford, and Chrysler, because free spending politicians don’t want to hurt the feeling of their special interest pals. Dodd engaged in some fear mongering by alleging that Big Three need to be bailed out “to protect this economy from the unintended consequences that would be unleashed by a collapse of the automobile industry.” What about the unintended consequence of bailing out every unprofitable and poorly run industry and bank in this country? Why are we rewarding failure with bailout after bailout?
Banking Committee Ranking Member Senator Richard Shelby injected some sanity into the hearing by defending risk as a tenet of free market capitalism. “The strength of the American economic system is that it allows us to take risks, to create, to innovate, to grow, to succeed and sometimes to fail. Every time government endeavors to alter any of these dynamics, it undermines and distorts the forces at work in all of them.” Agreed. Eliminate risk and you will have a system of socialized losses and private gain for corporations rich enough to hire the best lobbyists to grease the skids for more bailouts.
Conservatives want both Republicans and Democrats to provide change we can believe in — “No More Bailouts!”