Sheesh.President Bush has already signed it, and Treasure Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. says his team is already working on putting it into effect. So it turns out we won't get to find out if NOT passing the bailout would have led to catastrophe. And we'll never even know the real cost of delaying things a week, after everyone made such a huge fuss about how it had to be done RIGHT NOW. And we'll never know if one of the many alternatives floated would have done a better job with less risk -- and less moral outrage at the thought of giving all that money to the incredibly wealthy people who frakked it all up to start with.
Here's Bernanke telling us how urgent passage was, way back on September 24.
Of course, passing the bill didn't offer immediate help for the stock market, which plunged another 157 points (after haven been up some 200 points earlier in the day). Apparently the markets want even more.
And last night's Veep debate barely even mentioned the thing. Both candidates seem to be living in a dream world where $700 billion (whoops, $800 billion) conveniently grows on trees. Biden said only that he might have to "slow down" growth in Foreign Aid, while Palin claimed she couldn't think of a single thing that she and McCain would have to sacrfice to pay for the bailout. The rANT doesn't believe either of them.
You can bet there's going to be a cost for this. A big cost. The only question is whether things would have been worse if we didn't do it. And as far as The rANT can see, we'll never know the answer to that question. Of course, to a certain extent, it doesn't really matter.
Whatever happens, happens, and it's up to business owners to do the best they can in whatever economic climate comes along, no matter whose fault it is.
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