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Easily Understood

Required reading from Peter Ferrara. Messing around with Paulson. Honest Obama. Diner talk. Plus more.

9.25.08

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LIFELINE
Re: Peter Ferrara's The Economic Recovery Plan:

Award winning article by Mr. Ferrara. Government action caused the problem. So exactly how is further government action going to fix it? It is not. Yet, both Presidential candidates want to do just that. Scary isn't it?
-- Michael Tobias

The article by Peter Ferrara on "The Economic Recovery Plan" is the first thing I have read that spells out, in layman's terms, how we got into the mess we are in...Thanks, Peter, I can now talk intelligently about the matter and help other people really understand what happened.
-- Darlene Savoie

Great ideas for an economic recovery, but with the current idiots in control, it will never happen. If our Senators and Congressmen and the American voters, who elect those boneheads, each had half a brain we would have begun to control federal spending way back in the 1970s. But not! We don't want to do that. A President Obama would make the problem much worse.
-- David Shoup
Dublin, Georgia

It is not without reason that Americans have always been a quite hopeful people. There is something in our constitution that doesn't want to look at the sun as setting on our Republic, but rising, always rising. That's no small part of where Obama's Hope Express Train to Nowhere gets its steam. We keep hoping that politicians and leaders will fix everything. There is always a game plan, right?

May I lob a mudball onto the table of plenty?

There is no 100% guarantee that we will be around in 50 or 100 years. Many books have been written about demographics, moral decline, and other threats to our nation's existence. Not many that I'm aware of suggest that economics will be the primary source of our undoing, but it could very well be that such will be the case.

I ran across a de Tocqueville quote today: "The American Republic will endure, until politicians realize they can bribe the people with their own money." I think we've been in the "until" portion of that quote for quite some time. How much longer before we go to the next phase of our "unenduring"?

The American people (and their leaders) will some day have to face up to the idea that occasionally there is no solution. Sometimes the house burns down, or the car runs off the road into a ditch. Another very American idea is this: Try to save the house...but when you can't, let the house burn, and we will rebuild it.
-- Mark Pettifor
Goshen, Indiana

Thanks to Peter Ferrara for a short and easily understood explanation of the current financial mess. Should be required reading.

Newt Gingrich's economic plan might work. But, it will never happen with the current and upcoming Congress. As your reader Jay Molyneaux wrote, "Time to start digging: bury your money, guns, and bibles."
-- Nelson Ward
Cowles, New Mexico

STRAIGHT FROM MUGABE'S PLAYBOOK
Re: John Berlau's It's Paulson's Own Mess:

McCain's comment on firing Chris Cox and hiring Cuomo has cost him the election. Period. Now sit back and try to enjoy the screwing Obama and the Democrats hand out to the American taxpayer. Exchange your cars for bikes, cut down your trees, too. No new oil, no more coal, either.
-- Wolf Terner
Fair Lawn, New Jersey

If it's appropriate for Financial Institutions to value their assets at market value and recognize any associated losses, it is also appropriate for me to record a loss based on my home's reduction in value? Maybe I can reduce my income tax this year by showing a loss on the value of my home against my annual income. If it works for the bank, why shouldn't it work for me?

Please convey my gratitude to Mr. Paulson for this great tax tip.
-- John Carper

Miss Piggy wisely mused, "Never eat anything you can't lift." Maybe the American public, and certainly its leaders need to follow similarly sagacious advice: never invest in anything you can't explain.

While riding the elevator to the top floor of the inner city school in which I teach, I will often overhear my more liberal brethren (and sisters) discussing political issues, and since the elevator is public space, I jump in with both feet without trepidation, though I am fully aware my Libertarian voice will be a lone one, and offer my thoughts. This week and last when I have heard Bush and Co. being pilloried, I have held my tongue; not because the administration doesn't deserves a good lambasting, which it certainly does, but I hold my tongue because I don't understand what the hell is going on inside the Beltway and on Wall Street. I read TAS daily and I comprehend the words, but the concepts, byzantine rules, fake outs and shake outs and the general defiance of laws, both economic and natural, leave me bewildered. When my Left leaning colleagues bash Bush/McCain, I can offer more finger pointing, both justifiable and un, but I cannot clearly explain why The Boy President and his minions are more culpable than the Bush administration. I can point out the Democrats malicious intents to benefit from the schadenfreude of the general public. I can easily throw their young messiah under the economic bus, but I can't explain how the current administration's actions do not violate our Constitution and the very fundamental basis of conservative economics. (Could Hayek?) The economy has been shot and Secretary Paulson is holding the gun. My arguments, to my own ears, would be mere equivocations.

The information published by mainstream media, Fox News, and blogs, both conservative and liberal, equally supports willful complicity as well as charges of complete incompetence. The explanations I have heard are more confusing listening to a blind man wearing wool mittens describing a Braille copy of an M.C. Escher sketch.

Bottom line, can any at The American Spectator explain in simple terms how we get out of this mess? I have no confidence in the POTUS's speech tonight.
-- Ira M. Kessel
Rochester, New York

This financial mess we are in is not Paulson's mess. This is not about Enron. This is systemic. Government imposed mortgages and credit for all regardless of risk. It is because of a mortgage valuation mess (valuation of mortgage backed securities) embedded in every mutual fund which are being written down or sold at losses during 3rd quarter very heavily. What is coming is 401K 403b mess which will be evident to all after 9/30/2008 (quarter end) and people get their statements. The bailout is not for the mortgage holder. The bailout is to bring stability to the reaction that will come as people become aware their 401k's and 403 b's have been slashed in value.

Sending confidence to the market is pretty important right now...because courage will be needed. Suddenly, the write downs and sell offs are happening to market levels. Financial advisors are going to have a really hard time communicating to their clients what happened and clients are going to need detailed information on what happened. At this point it's not "return on capital"...it's return of capital.

I am specifically sending a number of questions to our financial advisor which I will want as a consumer from the company our household's 403b is through. This is time for clear answers to restore a semblance of order...but also to take retirement and living back into our own hands. The relationship between financial advisors/financial companies and consumers is about to change.
-- Sherrill
P.S. After thinking more about it, I'd say the unsophisticated taxpayer has already paid for the bailout with the slashed value in 401k's and 403b's. Were the insiders able to move their 401k's and 403b's stock and fund choices to cash before the crash?

P.S.S. And rereading John Berlau's article: he has the best point I have heard in all of this about sophisticated and unsophisticated investors.

At the rate the dollar is devaluating, America will be able to repay the entire $700 billion 2008 debt in 2016 for only $1.98 in 2008 dollars.
-- David Govett

MUDSLINGING
Re: David Catron's The Audacity of Slander:

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, "The more he talked of his honour, the faster we counted the spoons."

Perhaps that should be the new McCain/Palin campaign commercial when discussing Obama's current line of country?
-- Kate Shaw
Toronto, Canada

Is it any wonder that a man involved in ACORN's election fraud would project on his opponent his own lack of integrity and honesty? This is typical of Democrats who want to raise taxes on working Americans, appease terrorists and turn America's economy over to vulture capitalists like Warren Buffett and George Soros while paying their political hacks to destroy institutions like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. It isn't surprising that the once booming economy after 2 years of a Democrat Congress is stumbling. Things could only get worse if unethical Barack Obama and the man he called the next President of the US and the father of a lobbyist under investigation for fraud win the Presidential election.
-- Michael Tomlinson

REAL AMERICA
Re: Christopher Orlet's Diner Politics:

In the great state of New Jersey diners are a way of life. They did not go the way of the fast food venue, they co-exist with them.

People in my town meet in Diners. They stop at the Red Lion Diner in South Jersey on their way home from Drag racing in Atco NJ. They pull into the diner and eat and greet their friends. The waitress calls everyone honey and sweetie and politics is discussed. In this particular diner which is in proximity of Fort Dix and McGuire Air Force Base, you will find people paying the enlisted men and women's checks as a way of saying thank you.

Yes in New Jersey, hitting the diners is still a great way of getting to know the real America.

Great writing, will be looking forward to reading more.
-- Terry Alan Wade

WHO ARE YOU TO SAY?
Re: Jeffrey Lord's Bashing God by Dissing Sarah:

Your article sounds as if you're proud of your cleverness to mislead and be mean-spirited. I'm sorry you think this way.

I'm glad to know and love Republicans who, unlike your article asserts, are honest and caring of all of creation. Theses patriots know the difference between church and state and church and hate.

Next, if you're going to make associations, assumptions, and assertions about God, first you need to know that Palin is not God, should never be compared to God, and you, a writer who is published and spread over the web, knows better. I respectfully suggest that you consider never, ever, insinuating what all females do, what all females should do, what all females should wear, what all females should think, or how all females should choose to hold their guns or choose to vote.

Though the notion of understanding the Constitution, cooperation, and valuing peaceful community may be a challenge for you, I pray that you will learn its benefits.
-- Lib

CALL IT BOTH WAYS
Re: Kenneth Utting's letter (under "Facts Can Be Harsh") in Reader Mail's Hail King Henry:

Kenneth Utting, in his Reader Mail comment on Robert S. McCain's article, seems to think the media "...has accurately reported numerous facts about (Sarah Palin's) political career, such as her support for millions of dollars of earmarks including the Bridge to Nowhere..."

Do those "numerous facts" the media are eager to report include the fact that Mrs. Palin canceled the bridge project? Or that baby Trig is actually Sarah's son? Or that Palin was never a member of the Alaska Independence Party? Or that she was not a supporter of Pat Buchanan in 2000 (she was actually supporting Steve Forbes and just wore the Buchanan button to welcome him to Wasilla, a gesture she repeated for all candidates visiting her town)? Or that she never banned books from the town library? Or that she never mandated the teaching of Creationism in Wasilla public schools? Or that the photo of her in a bikini sporting a rifle is bogus?

The media Mr. Utting calls fair has relentlessly slandered Sarah Palin while giving a pass to the lies of her opponent, Biden. The Biden who tried to pass off a speech by a Brit pol as his own in 1987. Who -- in one-upmanship on Hillary's Tusla lie -- claimed his helicopter was forced down by hostile fire in Afghanistan. The Biden who claimed that in his college days at Syracuse, he "went to law school on a full academic scholarship, was the only one in his class to have such a scholarship, graduated up in the top half of his class, was the outstanding student in the political science department (and) graduated with three degrees from college." These are all lies the media ignores! Biden actually graduated 76th in a class of 85! Has any of this factual information about Biden come forth from the media unto which Mr. Utting lavishes his praise for its slander of Palin? Have the media paid more than scant attention to the numerous flip flops and gaffes Biden has made just since joining the Dem ticket? Does Mr. Utting think had Mrs. Palin uttered these gaffes, the media would not be pillorying her around the clock?

Please, Mr. Utting, spare me your shilling for the mainstream media. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see the bias in the 90% of the media who are by their own admission Democrats, aflame with a messianic mission: the election of their Chosen One, Barack Obama.
-- Robert Deutsch
New Jersey

SALMON, IDAHO
Re: Bill Croke's Out of Touch:

Sounds fishy to me. Does Sarah Palin live there?
-- P.E. Mallon

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