Well this bailout bill business, with defeated legislation rising like the undead, compelled me to write my Congressman. The redacted copy follows for your enlightenment, critique, and enjoyment.
I know that in the first go around for this current Wall Street Bailout Bill that Treasury Secretary Paulson so eagerly pushed, you voted against it. Thank you for that. I commend you for your good judgment. As the “new and improved” version of this bill comes round again, with far more “ornamentation”, I implore you to once again oppose it and vote against it. First, our country cannot afford $700 billion of borrowed money to be spent at the whim of the Secretary. It is just wrong from a lack of accountability and oversight perspective. Second, the effect that this bailout will have on the financial markets is dubious. Secretary Paulson and others maintain that this is absolutely necessary, yet just as many learned men and women maintain that it is not needed at all. From a pragmatic perspective this may be simply throwing good money that we must borrow after bad. Third, while some regulatory changes like change of accounting rules (mark to market) or changes in or removal of onerous regulations (Sarbanes-Oxley) may have some virtue and display a grasp of good governance, rescuing sophisticated and worldly businesses from the financial consequences of their actions and decisions goes against the grain of our market-based capitalism. Do not reward deserved and earned failure with borrowed tax-payer monies. Yes there may be ill effects of this crisis that go beyond the banks and institutions involved in it, but that pain will be easier to bear and easier to heal and repair than the damage caused by abandoning our experience and principles. As someone long ago said “The Banks caused this mess, let them sort it out”. If our servicemen and women can bear and brave the rigors of battle on our behalf, we can bear and brave the rigors of a market-based adjustment, adaptation and resolution of this crisis on behalf of ourselves and our descendants.