Is our destiny to become a banana republic?

For one high one day we put ’em in jail for life, I thought today. For destroying millions of families, they don’t come to a committee.

McCain’s Enron Loophole? The S&L Crisis? The Dot Bomb? Help me out here.

Earlier, Stupidity And Greed Slid To Thieving, I posted “When the crisis subsides, an inquiry is needed.”

When this saga is through there should be a tribunal of inquiry. Then we can be told what needs mending, and whom to take out and shoot.

There is so much ahead. Very much ahead. Look at The Big Picture.

Should we hold executives accountable?

Of course we should. One thing that is becoming overtly clear throughout this entire debacle is that the leadership of these banks is utterly incompetent.

We’re talking about a handful of the highest paid executives who not only presided over money losing corporations (which alone should be grounds for termination without a parachute), but these halfwits presided over the rapid, unglamorous *deaths* of their corporations and had no knowledge that they were doing so until it was far too late.

At the venerable Financial Times, William Buiter, Professor of European Political Economy, London School of Economics, indicts American executive management:

If financial behemoths like AIG are too large and/or too interconnected to fail but not too smart to get themselves into situations where they need to be bailed out, then what is the case for letting private firms engage in such kinds of activities in the first place?

The international press is on fire. Paper after paper is indicting the USA. Headlines in this country are muckraking more and more. Woodward says, Bush was strutting in the White House, “We’re going to save the world for Democracy,” but he’s not strutting anymore.

Nothing like it in my lifetime. We’ll see if it’s just taking opportunity during a poor crisis. If it lasts a month or two, I’d say history has already happened. Just one example:

I used to rule the world
Seas would rise when I gave
the word
Now in the morning I sleep
Sweep the streets I used to own

The leverage party’s over for the masters of the universe. Shed a tear. When you trade pieces of paper for other pieces of paper instead of trading them for real things, one day someone wakes up and realizes the paper’s worth nothing. And Lehman Brothers, after 158 years, has gone poof in the night.

We’re witnessing the passing of more than a venerable firm.

We’re seeing the death of a culture.

Obama said, [AP] “This is not a time for fear and it’s not a time for panic. In the next 47 days you can fire the whole trickle-down, on-your-own, look-the-other way crowd in Washington who has led us down this disastrous path.”