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February 18, 2009

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A couple of months ago I would have disagreed with you but it's becoming apparent that the crash is not only going to fundamentally rearrange the economic landscape, it's probably going to alter the American Way of Life once and for all. There's no way we can sustain it, and given the long-term outlook, we'd be wasting money if we tried.

The discontinuity between the affluence we've known all our lives and the straitened circumstances we're approaching will be such a shock that it's going to be interesting to see if this nation will survive it. We'll muddle along, I suspect, but the bitterness and anger will be severe. JD Hayworth, btw, is helpfully suggesting Chuck Schumer and George Soros as the primary scapegoats. Now, what do they have in common? :::::tapping my fingers:::::

If the auto industry goes, it takes with it a couple of million jobs, and possibly the state governments of several Midwestern states. At that point, the apocalypticians (Kunstler, Orlov, Martenson, Celente, et al) serve up crow for Conventional Wisdom to eat.

Maybe there's a rainbow behind all these storm clouds. Maybe we'll be better neighbors and better citizens because we have no other choice. But that's hardly a guarantee that the economic collapse won't wound this republic so deeply that the future itself becomes the primary casualty.

I agree. Let them fail.

Now imagine offering $6.7 billion (half of GM failout) to a startup that would do what GM won't. Imagine offering $2 billion (half of Chrysler).

I could do a better job with that. I'm sure someone else could too.

I agree with Soleri. A couple of months ago, I would have said bail them out. Now, however, it's become apparent that these auto giants aren't sustainable. It'll hurt like hell, but it's time to let free-market capitalism do its thing.

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