$700 Billion With A “B” Of Your Money

As the stock market tanks, I ponder whether Wall Street should be allowed to crash or not. And, have you noticed oil is up $25/barrel?

Should the Fed bailout Wall Street?
Yes
No
  
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UPDATED:

If you oppose the bailout, does this, from Megan McArdle, change your opinion? Have you considered what it might mean for making payroll, if your money market is no longer accessible?

No doubt some of my readers are rubbing their hands and saying “Exactly what should happen to people who carry credit card balances!” And I’m sure that among you there are people who pay cash on the barrel for everything, having never taken out any loan for a house, an automobile, an education, a personal financial crisis. These people never even use an American Express Card, which is, of course, a short-term loan. They also do not work for companies that borrow money to buy capital equipment or finance expansion, and their firms do not experience any mismatch between their payables and their receivables. Those people should stop reading now, because I’m pretty sure the Amish aren’t supposed to use the internet.

The rest of us live in a world that is created and run by institutions that amass capital from millions of people and concentrate it in areas where it (usually) makes people better off. I’m particularly confused by conservatives who claim to hate fractional reserve banking, duration mismatches in the financial system, and easy credit/bankruptcy. If you think more deeply about it, there are three reasons why this opposition is silly:

Go read the whole thing. Some form of “fix” is inevitable. Conservatives need to be thinking about rational solutions. Doing nothing might not be a rational solution.

More here.

Cross-posted at MelissaClouthier.com

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