“The Bush administration, moving to prevent an economic cataclysm, urged Congress on Friday to grant it far-reaching emergency powers to buy hundreds of billions of dollars of distressed mortgages despite many unknowns about how the plan would work,” the New York Times reports.
An economic cataclysm?
“Mr. Paulson and Ben S. Bernanke, the chairman of the Federal Reserve, told lawmakers that the financial system had been perilously close to collapse.”
Perilously close to collapse?
What does that mean? Brokers were going to start jumping out of buildings? The dollar would suddenly be worth a penny? I mean, I’m trying to get my head around this.
Last night on CNBC – or MSNBC, or one of the NBCs – a talking head (might have been Jim Cramer, true enough) said we were this/close to a barter economy.
A barter economy?
What, grocery stores suddenly wouldn’t honor cash?
I’m not doubting the seriousness of the situation – though I can’t help but be chastened a bit about, you know, the hordes of terrorists who would come out of our closets if we didn’t invade Iraq.
But did anyone think it was this bad? I mean, we knew it was bad . . . but this is insane.
If I had some gold, I would bury it in my backyard.
New York Times headline: “Dazed Capital Takes On Feel Of Wartime.”
Five years after the invasion of Iraq, it’s about time.