First time abroad, and America goes fascist. Has anyone read section 8 of Paulson's proposed bailout package?
non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be
reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.
Other good people covering a bad situation:
Terry Gross talking with Gretchen Morgensen about shady doings in the valuing of firms' assets.
Gawker reports on Americans Scrambling To Offer Bundles Of 'Shit' For Sale To Government
New York Times on What $700 Billion Can Actually Buy.
A commenter at the Consumerist has a great, simple answer to "How does the bailout affect me? (the "me" in question is a young american with very few investments." The answer's succinct and high-quality, so I'll repost:
"Basically, you will not be directly affected by these
most recent developments because you have no investments. What you will
feel is the slump on the economy…
This bailout will force the federal government to borrow and print
money, which will erode away that nest egg you have through inflation.
Basically if your savings account pays you 2% and inflation is 3.5%,
you are losing 1.5% each year by keeping your money in a relatively
safe place. Using treasury bills as an example, with the recent 'flight
to safety', yields will likely continue to fall and inflation will
likely continue to rise.
If all of that wasn't enough, the recent problems will likely cause
the economy to spin its wheels in the short term, making it tougher for
you to switch jobs or negotiate a raise because your employer is
feeling the squeeze of having to raise prices in an economy where
people's real wages are falling.
Additionally, if you want to start a business, or buy a home, it
will be difficult to qualify for a loan unless you have sterling credit.
My advice is, if you can stand it, do what you are doing now and
hang on. Things will shake out, and the problems always look the worst
at the bottom of a cycle."
Hang in there, America; my absentee ballot is sure to win this election for the forces of good. Coming up soon: Narita, a visit to grandma's house, frog sushi, a haircut, and a zany fashion alley.