John McCain

If at First You Don't Succeed, Suspend Suspend Again

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William Kristol, the Weekly Standard editor and New York Times columnist who has been a John McCain ideologist for more than a decade now, has the most unintentionally hilarious post-bailout-failure recommendation you'll read this week:

It's time for McCain to act decisively, and to lead, as he did with the surge. […]

McCain should lead-by re-suspending his campaign (fine, let observers mock him when he announces this), and leading his party and the Congress towards a solution.

In other Standard commentary, Dean Barnett is not impressed with "The Mike Pence doctrinaires who welcome a free market curative like a Depression for our current woes." More:

I guess they view it as sort of the economic equivalent of that stuff your drink the night before a colonoscopy. As misguided as Pence and his minions are, they at least have a certain nobility complementing their foolishness. I would be remiss if I didn't note that a significant subdivision of the Pence camp rejects the counsel of virtually everyone who knows anything about economics and instead believes that our current situation isn't so dire. Call it conservative magical thinking.

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  1. John McCain is toast.

  2. I’ve got a better idea, Bill old chap – why don’t you suspend your column?

  3. Call it conservative magical thinking.

    Call it “We have to go through some pain at some point…why not now?”

  4. Count me in the “it’s time to pay the piper” misguided group.

    Do nothing = recession now.
    Bailout = bigger one down the line.

    Of course I’m not running for re-election.

  5. It’s always funny when neocons adopt a “we are the moderate center” tone. In reality, nobody is more fanatical.

  6. I’ve got a better idea, Bill old chap – why don’t you suspend your column?

    No, I need the amusement.

  7. Would it not suck if a lack of bailout paved the way for another New Deal?

    Naomi Klein is feeling nostalgic.

    The article’s funny in the sense that seems to be advocating the very Shock Doctrine her bestseller taught us to be wary of.

  8. With the World Trade Organization talks off the rails, this crisis could also be the catalyst for a radically alternative approach to regulating world markets and financial systems.

    ahahahah

  9. Do nothing = recession now.
    Bailout = bigger one down the line.

    Could this not also be:

    Bailout = intervention now.
    No bailout = bigger one down the line.

    Just throwing it out there.

  10. the economic equivalent of that stuff your drink the night before a colonoscopy

    No, we think you should just drink it before your colonoscopy and be done with it, not make it a soft drink, baby formula, cocktail mixer, and a dessert topping — for the next 7 years.

  11. I would be remiss if I didn’t note that a significant subdivision of the Pence camp rejects the counsel of virtually everyone who knows anything about economics and instead believes that our current situation isn’t so dire.

    I thought, like, 200 economists wrote a petitions against the bailout. Does Barnett not consider these people to know anything about economics?

  12. bottom line, this is what is making me panic and drop shrill troll rantings all over the place:

    this is not the panic of 1893. in the 21st century we have a population that will not tolerate another depression. if we have another depression it will be the end of the republic. the far left will take over, either via electoral landslides for generations or via actual riots and revolution. the country will break into several distinct parts. the economic/political/military strength of the country will wither, and capitalism around the world will buckle. libertarians will be left lauding a few prosperous city-states like dubai or singapore while the rest of the world descends into a dark ages worse than anything under the soviets.

    if someone can prove to me that this won’t happen, then i’m cool. but this is a giant sinkhole that has been growing for three years right under our eyes…we have all been watching it and most keep saying it’s not that bad, it will be contained right here…ok, over here…ok, back here…ok here and no farther…

    i have confidence in free markets in the abstract but i have no confidence left in the individuals operating them to prevent doomsday. so where am i wrong?

  13. jmd,

    Prove to me that a meteor won’t strike the earth tomorrow, wiping out all life, and I’ll get back to you on your collapse-of-civilization scenario.

  14. if we have another depression it will be the end of the republic.

    Actually, the republic ended during the last depression.

  15. ok if you think the republic ended during the last depression then kill yourself if this country is such a horrible place to live.

    people aren’t against this bill cuz they are austrian-school economists. they are against it cuz they are anti-capitalist populists who would destory this country if their point of view prevails.

  16. What individuals are operating in a free market?

  17. Wait, they’re against it because they’re ANTI capitalist? I was always against any bailout whatsoever because I’m PRO capitalism. Now my head hurts…

  18. i have confidence in free markets in the abstract but i have no confidence left in the individuals operating them to prevent doomsday. so where am i wrong?

    Funny- I am opposed to the bailout because I have absolutely no expectation that the individual (Saint Hank) operating it has the ability or inclination to purchase those notorious toxic assets at anything remotely close to an appropriate price.

    If the Air Force will pay a thousand dollars ot thereabouts for a stainless steel toilet seat, what will the Treasury be willing to pay for a bundle of loans, of which some unknown number are essentially worthless?

  19. SxCx | September 29, 2008, 7:12pm | #

    “Could this not also be:
    Bailout = intervention now.
    No bailout = bigger one down the line.”

    yes this could be it, but the bigger bailout will be opposed by lots of people as well…we are gaining ground in the infowar.

    if we force them to turn up the heat too fast then the frog won’t boil, it will jump out of the pot…it may be too late for this, but it is our only hope .

    BTW Paulson said the world would end by last thursday! he lied, the more time that goes on the more we can point to their lies…anyone ask him why he lied yet?! that should be a headline on reason..”why did you lie Paulson?” why would we trust you now?

  20. You Guys,

    That troll didn’t claim that anyone was operating in a free market. He was referring to the people who operate the free market. Everyone knows the free market is tightly controlled by a cabal of guys in an underground bunker with their hands on the stick.

  21. jmd’s right. I saw it in a movie once. First there’s a big crisis, then everybody votes to make Nancy Pelosi Empress, and she turns out to be a Sith Lord! And Newt Gingrich is Jar Jar Binks, but then I woke up.

  22. Actually the kristol article links ot an interesting paper that proposes an alternative to the bailout plan. It’s definitely worth a read.

    http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/bebchuk/pdfs/Olin620_Addressing-Financial-Crisis.pdf

    The basic argument is that the MBS’s are undervalued because there’s not enough liquidity for anyone to purchase them at the moment.

    Although, what with the big sell-off in the market today, one would think that a lot of people have some cash on hand right now they could be using to buy mortgage-backed securities at fire sale prices.

  23. I would be remiss if I didn’t note that a significant subdivision of the Pence camp rejects the counsel of virtually everyone who knows anything about economics…

    Funny, I suspect that these two hundred economists do know something about economics. I also suspect that all of them know significantly more about economics than Dean Barnett.

  24. ok if you think the republic ended during the last depression then kill yourself if this country is such a horrible place to live.

    He just said that the republic ended. There’s still lots of reasons to continue living: bacon-wrapped hot dogs, for instance.

  25. Here’s an example of rejecting the counsel of virtually everyone who knows anything about economics. Oops. Looks like Ron Paul & his advisers really DID tell us so, whether or not the antilibertarian biased news media now wants to admit it.

  26. I’m thinkin’ maybe double secret suspension.

    P Brooks, the air force doesn’t actually pay that much for a toilet seat. The excess is funneled over to secret projects like keeping aliems alive at area 51.

    Mike Laursen, I saw a picture yesterday of chocolate covered bacon. It reminded me of a very kinky girl I dated once.

    uhhh, maybe it was twice

  27. Could this not also be:

    Bailout = intervention now.
    No bailout = bigger one down the line.

    I think you can add to that:

    Bailout = bigger one down the line.

    Precedent and expectations have been set, after all. Its a lose/lose!

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