Barack Obama gave a speech today from the Senate Floor about the financial whatevah...
I have been wondering what all this might look like this 'Unspeakable' type of economic nightmare we appear to be on the brink of. Starting a little bit to sort of panic and quietly alarmed.
Then I read the transcript of his remarks, and I feel sort of okay again. Here are some concrete examples
of just how dire the situation is, and how it weaves itself right into the fabric of what it means to be an
October 1, 2008
We’re in a very dangerous situation, where financial institutions across this country are
afraid to lend money. And if all that meant was the failure of a few banks in New York, that would be one
thing, but that’s not what it means.
What it means is, if we don’t act, it will be harder for Americans to get a mortgage for their home or loans they need to buy a car or send their children to college.
What it means is that businesses won’t be able to get the loans they need to open a new factory or make payroll for their workers. And if they can’t make payroll on Friday, then workers are laid off on Monday.
And if workers are laid off on Monday, then they can’t pay their bills or pay back their loans to somebody else. And it will go on and on and on, rippling through the entire economy. And potentially we could see
thousands of businesses close, millions of jobs could be lost, and a long and painful recession could
In other words, this is not just a Wall Street crisis; it’s an American crisis. And it’s the American economy
that needs this rescue plan.
Still scary as hell, but at least it's spelled out in a calm sort of way. I feel like maybe with some smart
leadership and regular pep talks from President O, maybe we'll be okay long term.
Now, let me just close by saying this. I do not think this is going to be easy. It’s not going
to come without costs. We are all going to need to sacrifice.
We’re all going to need to pull our weight, because now, more than ever, we are all in this together.
Now, that’s part of what this crisis has taught us, that, in the end of the day, there’s no real separation between Wall Street and Main Street. There’s only the road we’re traveling on as Americans.
And we will rise or fall on that journey as one nation and as one people.
I know that many Americans are feeling anxiety right now about their jobs, about their homes, about their life savings. But I also know this, that we can steer ourselves out of this crisis. We always have.
During the great financial crisis of the last century, in his first fireside chat, FDR told his fellow Americans that, “There is an element in the readjustment of our financial system more important than currency, moreimportant than gold, and that is the confidence of the people themselves. Confidence and courage are theessentials of success in carrying out our plan.”
Let us unite in banishing fear. Together we cannot fail. We cannot fail, not now, not tomorrow, not next
year. This is a nation that’s faced down war and depression, great challenges and great threats.