Monday, December 22, 2008

I'm starting to think I should get a bailout too

Commercial real estate developers are trying to get themselves in line for a bailout, according to The Wall Street Journal (subscription only).

Hey, why not? The developers say that "thousands of office complexes, hotels, shopping centers and other commercial buildings are headed into defaults, foreclosures and bankruptcies." Sounds like as solid an argument as GM and Chrysler have, no?

Actually not, in my view. A GM bankruptcy around this time could deliver a punishing blow of the sort that the economy as a whole would have difficulty absorbing. That said, the case for GM is purely pragmatic, as was the case for propping up the banking system, and has a lot to do with the size and consequence of the companies involved. The individual merits of this or that company or industry have precious little to do with it, unfortunately. Developers and all the rest of us will suffer more if the recession is deeper and longer.

Anyway, if bailouts were based on merit, it's clear to me that my personal bailout should be right of there at the top of the list!

1 comment:

  1. My husband and I want a bailout for being good, by-the-book, 2nd generation US citizens. We've paid for our 4 children's education (all 4 college graduates) out of our own pockets. We pay our income taxes on time. We manage to save a little money in a savings account for which we are heavily penalized each year at tax time. We own a modest home and pay our mortgage monthly. We pay our real estate taxes. We own a 10 year old car. It's not that we couldn't afford a new one, but because we felt the auto industry was selling a whole lotta crap for a whole lotta money.
    We want a bailout for always living within our means. We want something for doing the right things, living by the rules and being burdens to no one.
    55+ years of solid citizenship has gotten us no perks. We are "Too Late Smart"...we should've lived well beyond our means, begged off on our loans, spent every penny we made on fun & trendy products, lied, cheated and stole. Then we'd qualify for a bailout, and we could retire in peace.
    Apparently, there is no advantage to being solid, frugal, voting, law-abiding middle class US citizens!!