The only problem with the wordpress interface is that I can’t post non-youtube video embeds. Please watch, if you haven’t seen it already, Obama’s Speech on the Economy at Georgetown University. He explain the crisis in a clear way and his policy in a way to address those who disagree with it (transcript). Here he addresses my concerns:
On the other hand, there have been some who don’t dispute that we need to shore up the banking system, but suggest that we have been too timid in how we go about it. They say that the federal government should have already preemptively stepped in and taken over major financial institutions the way that the FDIC currently intervenes in smaller banks, and that our failure to do so is yet another example of Washington coddling Wall Street. So let me be clear – the reason we have not taken this step has nothing to do with any ideological or political judgment we’ve made about government involvement in banks, and it’s certainly not because of any concern we have for the management and shareholders whose actions have helped cause this mess.
Rather, it is because we believe that preemptive government takeovers are likely to end up costing taxpayers even more in the end, and because it is more likely to undermine than to create confidence. Governments should practice the same principle as doctors: first do no harm. So rest assured – we will do whatever is necessary to get credit flowing again, but we will do so in ways that minimize risks to taxpayers and to the broader economy. To that end, in addition to the program to provide capital to the banks, we have launched a plan that will pair government resources with private investment in order to clear away the old loans and securities – the so-called toxic assets – that are also preventing our banks from lending money. (18m15s)
Shut up, just shut up. You had me at ‘hello.’
Every time Obama steps to the plate and explains his Administration’s actions vis-a-vie the economy or international relations, it always addresses my concerns in such a perfect way. The man is good, and is clearly aware of all the concerns, both from the left and the right, of his actions. It is a new feeling to have detailed concerns about our government’s policy, and have them addressed forthright. I still disagree with a lot of it, but it’s comforting to know the President at least has the contours of the debate in mind. Given that we are facing the biggest economy downturn of my life, and my parents’ lives, it is good to see a guy in charge who understands all the disagreements that are being brought to the plate. This is a total must read – I hope the historians lock it down for future generations…