Friday, September 16, 2005

Federal Bailout

So the Feds are planning to throw $300 billion plus at the Gulf....., wonderful. I know, I know, this is what governments do. But I don't have to feel good about it. In fact, at the risk of sounding whiney, the whole idea makes me feel ill. If all of this money was directed towards rebuilding the public infrastructure (the levees, etc.) then I might feel less reservation, but most of this dough will be spent (and much of it wasted) on individual/private recovery and repair projects. I look at it like this - you know when you are sitting in a long line of traffic, patiently waiting your turn to exit the expressway, and all the while cars continually zoom past you on the left with the audacious intention of cutting over at the last minute. These are the people that I'd like to see thrown under the jail along with rapists and the telemarketers who call before 9am on Saturdays. Sure, we'd all like to zip directly to the front of the line, but by and large, most drivers are courteous enough to abide by the established norms that dictate good-driver behavior. Yes, here in civilization, among the socially-conscious, we live our lives according to certain established, yet unspoken, norms of behavior that transcend de jure law and your grandmother's book of manners - you don't eat with you mouth open, you don't call shotgun until you see the car in question, and, for god's sake, you wait in line like everybody else. So, back to the Gulf state inhabitants that will soon be the beneficiaries of GW's tax-payer (debt) financed handouts. Many (not all) of these people did not have insurance and will, in essence, be rewarded for their irresponsibility. They are, simply stated, line-cutters on a grand scale. I don't like flushing x dollars/year down the State Farm toilet to protect my home from a hypothetical catastrophic event, but that is what responsible homeowners do. And should I choose not to do so, I will reap the consequences. End of story. This federal bailout sets an astronomically dangerous precedent and encourages irresponsible behavior that will inevitably just lead to more line-cutting. Great.