In his 2001 book, The CEO of the Sofa, P.J. O’Rourke wrote:
The founding fathers, in their wisdom, devised a method by which our republic can take 100 of its most prominent numskulls and keep them out of the private sector where they might do actual harm.
But of course, with every new bailout, the Senate is becoming further and further intertwined with the public sector, and doing increasing harm. As Frank Martin noted in a recent post on his Varifrank blog, “This is how it ends. As of right now, the Senate IS the banking system“:
You just try prying the banking system from the hands of the Senate now. You want a loan? Sure, lets just check your voting record, lets see what kind of car you want to buy, oh darn its not a certified government “greenmobile”, well sorry Mr. Consumer, we can’t give you a loan for that new Toyota Dual Axle truck for your ranch, but how about a new Chevy Cobalt Hybrid? Sure thing. Sign right here Mr. Consumer.
SNAP! That’s just how easy it is for you to find that you no longer have any economic choices. No banks – then no bank loans. No bank loans – then no economy. In point of fact, your entire economy is now run by just 100 people. 100 people that if most of us were in an elevator and any one of them got on, we would then get off and walk up the rest of the building rather than risk our well being by exposed to their close proximity.
Hence the subject of my newest Silicon Graffiti, which begins with a parody of Charles Schwab’s 2007 ad campaign (with a little help from the cartoon plug-in from After Effects CS4) before exploring the auto bailout, and the banking bailout. And the good old days (by comparison), when Congress would look at a giant corporation and decide the best way to break it up, not prop it up. When it was wasn’t defaulting on its own debts, of course.
And along the way, a look back at some early warnings from the 1990s, and going even further back, a flashback from Vice President Elect Joe Biden to President Abraham Roosevelt Franklin Washington’s early televised fireside chats from the 1860s. And a timely paraphrase of the Bard of Springfield.
This is our 23rd edition of Silicon Graffiti ,which began in January of this year–you can explore the back catalog by starting these numbers.
(Also posted at Right Wing News, where I’m one of several guest bloggers this week.)