01 October 2008

House full of Amateurs

Given the seeming inability of the US House of Representatives to act to stem the current panic in the US and world financial markets, I think it fair to make two observations.

There are no term limits on the House. Because of this and unconscionable gerrymandering, many members of the House have been in office for a long time. You would think that this would lead them to act more like professionals than like amateurs. But clearly, when it comes to understanding financial panics, their history, and doing what it takes to mitigate them, we are looking at a House full of amateurs. If the House fails to act, I will vote against my Congressperson, whether he voted for the so-called "Bailout" or not. Because his duty is not just to vote for it, it is to persuade enough others for it to pass. Those of us watching our retirement nest eggs evaporate as the stock market falls and facing layoffs as the credit markets dry up are not amused.

Congress currently enjoys a 10% approval rating, some 20 points lower than even the President. The members of Congress need to realize that they did not get elected because we liked them. They got elected because we felt that we had no other viable choice. They need to quit working so hard to prove to us that we were wrong about that.

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