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In another amazing display of audacious opportunism, President Bush has discovered a way to pour another trillion dollars into the pockets of his corporate friends.
In his first term Bush was able to turn the tragedy of 9/11 into a bonanza for his friends by initiating the war in Iraq. He panicked the Congress into authorizing the war, abandoning its constitutional prerogatives, and granting him unprecedented executive powers.
Most of a trillion dollars has gone into the pockets of American corporations who supplied material, transportation and construction services, and even paramilitary operatives, to create an American military bastion that will ensure American access to Iraqi oil for generations to come.
The only downside was the loss of a few thousand American patriots who gave their lives, a few tens of thousands of physically and mentally wounded, many who now wander the streets of America, homeless, or populate our prisons, because with all that expense we can’t afford the medical and mental treatment they need.
There was no financial cost to Americans, who received tax cuts while the transfer was financed by adding to the deficit. It was a breathtaking, audacious transfer of wealth from the public to the corporate domain.
Now in his waning months, years of deregulation of financial institutions have created a tremendous new opportunity. We see before us the possibility that the barons of free market capitalism may lose money as the inevitable consequence of an unregulated free market. Bush is equal to the challenge: just as he was able to convince the nation that a failed and broken middle east despot was on the verge of raining nuclear, biological and chemical weapons on American cities, he is now casting the plight of his billionaire friends as a threat to the American way of life.
Instead of soldiers, he now holds hostage millions of low-income American dreamers who were hoodwinked into taking on debt they couldn’t afford, and retirees who see their pensions going up in smoke. To meet the looming crisis we must, without analysis, quickly accede to the bailout, grant him the same unconstitutional economic powers as he had military powers in Iraq and give him most of another trillion dollars to spend as he sees fit: i.e, give to his friends as reward for their audacious violations of the basic rules of finance.
A last hurrah for pirate capitalism. Please, the last.