Chris Lester’s column (2/24, Business, “Fight the bailout burnout”) suggests the fears experienced by Americans are caused by President Obama not being cheerful enough when discussing the economy. People are fearful because their home values have plummeted, their 401(k)s are depleted, they have friends or family who’ve lost their jobs, and they worry they can’t afford college for their kids. I appreciate the president’s honest assessment and efforts to deal with the crisis.
As for the suggestion that a scarlet “B” be worn by “anyone receiving bailout assistance,” let’s be honest. It’s not just unemployed auto or construction workers or homeowners facing foreclosure who benefit. Everyone who uses public schools, drives across bridges and highways, needs a loan or even works for a company whose customers will have more money to spend stands to gain.
Like it or not, we’re all in this together. Berating the president or the most obvious recipients of the stimulus will not move us forward.
I really enjoy reading the flood of boastful letters to The Star describing how sensible and perceptive some people are to have purchased only the size of home they could afford, paid all their bills on time and never defaulted on a loan. They also help old ladies across the street and always pet puppies and on and on.
They decry the government “handout” of helping people keep their mortgage payments current to avoid default, and they cynically demand that government also pay their mortgage payment. “It’s socialism!” they scream.
Yet these are the same people who will rant and rave and kick and scream and whine if half of the houses on their block go into foreclosure and become a blight on the neighborhood. If you think your home value is down now, guess what? You haven’t seen anything yet.
Get a grip, folks. Which option do you prefer?