Calamity! Republicans Fail Us All!

The Republicans failed to come up to the plate, and with 66 voting for and 132 voting against, the critically important bailout bill has failed in the house. As the vote turned against the bill, we watched the stock market dive precipitously. The Dow stands now at about 500 down, but it was much lower a few minutes ago.

Make no mistake: This is a situation where the elected representatives need to make a decision: Do they act in their own self interest and vote against the bill (which makes sense because the average American does not want this bill), or do they act in the interest of the nation (and more broadly)?

Many politicians are selfish slime buckets, but it is abundantly clear that this applies to a vast majority of Republicans and a more modest minority of Democrats. This has never been more clear than in this vote.

The Asian markets will open in a couple/few hours. It will be interesting to see what happens then.

So, what happens next? Well, for starters, we have a little problem with religion. Since there is a Jewish Holiday starting tonight, the house cannot continue to debate and work out some kind of positive movement, and they don’t meet tomorrow. So for lack of separation of church and state, the world markets get an extra 24 hours to spiral downwards. Gee, thanks, religious people.

As we watch this happening, the various experts are asking each other: What happens now? I’m watching veteran Hill reporter Mike McCaric and he is hyperventilating and sweating because he is so alarmed. The financial reporters are aghast. It is reported that people at the NY Stock Exchange are wandering around like zombies. This may well be an historic moment.

Ah, wait, something is happening. A motion to reconsider is being made on the house floor. They are discussing rules, which should not be so difficult because this the house. The democratic chair is trying to explain this to the Republicans, and suddenly Representative Frank has intervened to shut down the Republican’s question and end the process.

At this time the bill has officially failed and the house is on to other business.

Julia just asked me what this all means. I said “Well, this is an historic moment. Could be the end of civilization as we know it. The economy may now collapse.”

She quickly replied, “OK, then. We better go shopping NOW!”

Smart girl.

Comments

  1. #1 Stephanie Z
    September 29, 2008

    Don’t forget the failure of leadership at the top. If anyone had any confidence in the current administration, if Bush could stand up in front of a camera and not look like a schoolboy in short pants, he could carve some time out of the panic to get something passed. As it is, he can’t even meet with the leaders of the markets to come to an agreement to suspend trading for the rest of today and tomorrow, until another vote can be held.

    I’m not fond of this bill, because I don’t think it fixes any of the underlying problems and that’s a hugely spendy stop-gap, but I understand that something needs to be done to fix the trading woes. As stock prices drop, a lot of companies’ loans payments are triggered, which only worsens the problem.

    Gack. Maybe Obama can make a plea for reason to investors. Someone might actually listen to him.

  2. #2 R. Totale
    September 29, 2008

    Greg,
    Please explain why you feel this particular bill needed to pass. In other words, why are these people wrong:

    http://faculty.chicagogsb.edu/john.cochrane/research/Papers/mortgage_protest.htm

  3. #3 Christian
    September 29, 2008

    Oh, come on now, 95 Democrats voted against the bill too. That is 40% of all Democratic congressmen. Sure, 67% of all Republicans voted against it – but the bill was defeated by 23 votes – with 95 Democrats voting against it. Had only 23 of these 95 Democrats voted differently… It is way too easy to blame the defeat of the bill on the Republicans alone…

    Beside that, I am not so sure that this bailout bill is a good idea. It clearly rewards greed, failure and irresponsible investment strategies. The Lehman Brothers executives will pay themselves 2,5 Billion Dollars in “bonus payouts” this year (despite going broke) while the taxpayer is being pummled in picking up the tab:

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/fury-at-25bn-bonus-for-lehmans-new-york-staff-937560.html

  4. #4 Christian
    September 29, 2008

    Oh, come on now, 95 Democrats voted against the bill too. That is 40% of all Democratic congressmen. Sure, 67% of all Republicans voted against it – but the bill was defeated by 23 votes – with 95 Democrats voting against it. Had only 23 of these 95 Democrats voted differently… It is way too easy to blame the defeat of the bill on the Republicans alone…

    Beside that, I am not so sure that this bailout bill is a good idea. It clearly rewards greed, failure and irresponsible investment strategies. The Lehman Brothers executives will pay themselves 2,5 Billion Dollars in “bonus payouts” this year (despite going broke) while the taxpayer is being pummled in picking up the tab:

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/fury-at-25bn-bonus-for-lehmans-new-york-staff-937560.html

  5. #5 Roger, FCD
    September 29, 2008

    Greg, I have to disagree with you, and mightily so. At the risk of sounding like I’m making an Argument from Authority, take a look at the names on the letter from the U of Chicago that R. Totale posted. I’d like to point out 2 of those names: David Levy and Alex Tabarrok, they’re both from George Mason University an incredibly conservative school of economics. What does it say about a bill, put forth by members of a Republican administration, that conservative economists are against it, not in part, but completely?

    Additionally, I’m not sure I’m convinced that the need for a bill is as urgent as people say it is. I have heard nobody addressing just why “We have to do something YESTERDAY!!!1OMG1″ Where are our alternatives? US Citizens deserve better than being forced to vote only on a bill put forth by a former employee of Goldman Sachs.

    I have yet to see anyone (and I’ve been reading economist blogs left and right recently) explain why this problem can’t be solved, to the benefit of BOTH investors and the general public by doing away with those atrocious ARMs that people are saddled with, give them nice, low rate 30yr. fixed-rate mortgages and return liquidity to the market because all those ‘wonderful’ financial vehicles are actually worth something again?

    Fix the homeowners, regulate the jerks, any other solution is simply asking the taxpayer to bend over and take it… again… with a sandpaper wrapped brick.

    Roger.

  6. #6 Greg Laden
    September 29, 2008

    R Totale: First of all, of the very few economists I know on that list, they are pretty right wing, and none of those I’d trust are listed. It is not hard to get a list this short supporting whatever you want. Not good enough. Second, those people are complaining about the bill that was being considered four days ago, and many of those issues have been dealt with.

    Christian: Yes, you are repeating back what I clearly say in my post regarding the ratio of morons to non-morons.

    Roger: See above. You are arguing on the basis of who is a republican/conservative vrs. not. That does not make a lot of sense because the political camps are divided for the reasons I state in my post.

    Every one of the members of the house is up for election in less than 40 days. The president is not. This makes a huge difference!

  7. #7 Greg Laden
    September 29, 2008

    I quickly add: I could very easily change my mind about this bill. The problem is not so much the bill, but the politics. This bill could work, or the opposite approach could work. In either case, neither will work if the executive and the congress does not come in with both feet and manage this properly, and visa versa.

  8. #8 Dean
    September 29, 2008

    It was pointed out on the news, after the bill was voted down, that republican leaders told folks who were not in possible problem this election they COULD vote for it: those who are facing a struggle in this election could “vote their conscience” on it. how’s that for a clear message?

  9. #9 kraut
    September 29, 2008

    The bill as proposed does nothing to reestablish the regulatory controls that were dismantled beginning with Reagan and continuing with Clinton and Bush.

    The idiocies of having the “market” regulate istself have come home to roost, and any bailout without stringent regulation will just let the bleeding continue in the future.

    Let those who played the game and lost fail – that is the way capitalism is supposed to work. It will clear the area for those smarter and more restraint – if properly regulated and policed.

  10. #10 Stephanie Z
    September 29, 2008

    Kraut, you’re missing the difference between institutions and individuals. Many if not most of the individuals you would like to see punished have very little at risk here. They got theirs while things still looked good.

    The changes to the bill that were made over the weekend were largely aimed at making sure these individuals aren’t rewarded by the government stepping up to save the institutions. Punitive measures against the individuals would need to be pursued separately.

  11. #11 Greg Laden
    September 29, 2008

    The bill as proposed does nothing to reestablish the regulatory controls that were dismantled beginning with Reagan and continuing with Clinton and Bush.

    Very true.

    The changes to the bill that were made over the weekend were largely aimed at making sure these individuals aren’t rewarded by the government stepping up to save the institutions. Punitive measures against the individuals would need to be pursued separately.

    Yes, but perhaps the next version (later in the week) will do more along these lines. There are some indications that the anti-golden parachute provisions are not very strong. They don’t talk about bonuses, for example. (This is second hand).

    I eagerly await news from the Asian markets.

  12. #12 Stephanie Z
    September 29, 2008

    Well, yes. There are plenty of other things I’d like to see go into a bill like this, like a suspension of stock-price trigger provisions in any debt owned by companies that benefit from the bill and, well, plenty of other things, including a nice broad definition of compensation. They could model that after what they have to report in 10-Ks now for top executives. Right now, I think my best chance at getting them is to see a not entirely horrible bailout bill passed, then using voter outrage to go after the stuff that would otherwise be controversial.

    Again, my first preference would be for an executive who could plausibly call for calm while everything is worked out well the first time. I’m not going to get that, though.

  13. #13 Greg Laden
    September 29, 2008

    A simple thing to ask, but you are asking it of a very very simple man. So no.

    Bill Clinton, Franklin Roosevelt, Hilary Clinton, Barack Obama… those are people who could talk us out of a financial crisis. Not this guy.

  14. #14 kraut
    September 29, 2008

    [quote]you’re missing the difference between institutions and individuals. [/quote]

    I realize there is a difference. As long as individuals are obliged to secure their old age pension at a liveable minimum by investing in the stockmarket, there is a problem.

    According to every data I have read, the stockmarket has made absolutely no gain for the majority of long term investors over the last thirty or so years. Adjusted for inflation, it would have been better to collect your empty beer bottle (see the mogambo guru on atol)

    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Global_Economy/JI30Dj07.html

    This problem vanishes if there is a government supported (run by an agency which is accountable to but not directed on a day to day basis by government – “arms length relationship”), secured and supervised pension plan that applies to everybody and guarantees everybody a “base” pension one can live on, that is funded and based on “work live” contributions.

    This established,anybody playing the stockmarket does this as a gambler with the risks clearly visible, and should be in the same boat as the bigger gamblers at the investment banks..

    I do not know what the deposit insurance amounts to in the US for bank deposits, but here in Canada we were insured up to 60 000$ per bank deposit. The amount might have increased.

    Such an insurance should be extended to any investment that is part of the government supported pension plans (here in Canada called RRSP’s) until a better plan for pension income can be divised.
    By doing this it would decouple the need to help the small investor who does this to protect his livestyle after retirement from the to me rather perverse “obligation” to help the irresponsible idiots at wall street who gambled high and fell very low.
    This would be really throwing good taxpayers money after bad investments, as most of those having to be bought out are toxic, dead fish – or parrots , if you are a monty python fan.

    more to read:
    http://www.thenation.com/doc/20081013/johnson
    http://www.thenation.com/doc/20081013/stiglitz

  15. #15 Orac
    September 29, 2008

    The bill was a shit sandwich that the President and Congress were trying to get the American people to take a big bite of and like it. Its failure is not all that bad a thing. The market downturn because the bill failed was entirely predictable and largely due to the Adminstration’s dire warnings that OMG The Economy Will Collapse If We Don’t Do Something NOW own repeated over and over again in an effort to scare Congress into doing what it wanted. After all, if the Secretary of the Treasury, the President, and much of the leadership of the U.S. government keeps repeating that we’re all doomed if this doesn’t pass and then it doesn’t pass–well, of course the market’s going to tank.

  16. #16 Todd
    September 29, 2008

    Oh boo hoo, Wall St.

    The economy is going to suck regardless if this bill had passed or not. All the $700 billion would have done was guarantee hyperinflation to pay off our Chinese owners. It didn’t solve the problem, which is the bursting of the housing bubble. The deflation of the housing market still continues to unravel, and until it bottoms out, throwing crap loads of taxpayer money onto the bonfire just puts off the inevitable.

    Long story short, we drank a shit load of liquor at the housing party and now we have one hell of a hangover. Grab the porcelain, America, here come the dry heaves.

  17. #17 Paul Hutch
    September 29, 2008

    I’m against the bailout even though my 401(k) will almost certainly suffer big time for years to come. The companies that screwed up need to fail or succeed without getting taxpayer cash. Nothing will teach them better than failing due to their poor choices. Bailing them out by adding more debt for future generations will only teach them to do it again in the future.

    On Kraut’s point about market return, DJIA 1978 to present up 1200% and this includes effectively no gain for the last 8 years. Inflation 1978 to present kicked up prices about 150%. You’d have to be a really bad investor to have lost out vs. inflation in the past 30 years.

  18. #18 Virgil Samms
    September 29, 2008

    The bill as proposed does nothing to reestablish the regulatory controls that were dismantled beginning with Reagan and continuing with Clinton and Bush.

    A valid point. Obama is talking about reinstating regulation. McCain is talking about prosecuting people. For what? That’s the freaking problem, there are no appropriate laws or regulations that have been broken. Lehmann bros skimmed that 2.5 B$ off the top and it was perfectly legal. If grandpa McCain can’t figure out that you can’t put people in jail for doing things that are legal, then he is not the man to run this country.

  19. #19 kraut
    September 29, 2008

    “Inflation 1978 to present kicked up prices about 150%.”

    I do not know where you’ve been hiding. Compare what a house or a vehicle cost in 1980 to todays prices.
    And I come up with an inflation of about 300% – 400%.
    Also take into account the US $ continously loosing value since the Bush administration took power.

    “So, to show you that investing in the stock market over the long-term is a guaranteed loser for the majority of investors, suppose you had invested $7,200 (the price of a new car in 1980) into your precious little retirement account in 1980. Now, in 2008, after 28 years…. your original investment of $7,200 would have to have, after paying a 15% capital gains tax on the increase from your original $7,200, risen to $29,912! And you got this sum by having a superb annual 5.2% investment gain! Every year for 28 years! No losses! Marvelous!

    Now, to those blithely uninformed as to the horrors of inflation in the money supply and the loss of buying power it creates, this seems like a nice gain: $7,200 grew to $29,912. It almost quadrupled!
    ……
    Your gain on the $7,200 is just enough for you to have, after 28 years, an after-tax price of a new car ($26,950), which means that you just break even!”

    http://www.dailyreckoning.com/Writers/Mogambo/DREssays/MG071108.html

    Why I rather trust the guys around the “daily reckoning”?
    Read here from october 2006:

    http://www.dailyreckoning.com/Issues/2006/DR101606.html

    http://www.dailyreckoning.com/Issues/2005/DRUS112805.html

    Fiscal Train Wreck: Gloom and Doom

    “Mr. Walker goes on to say, “Our financial condition is ‘worse than advertised.’ ” He calmly explains that we face huge deficits in our budget, balance of payments, savings – and “leadership.”

    That was published in 2005. Don’t say you weren’ warned, but at that time the idiots at wallstreet, the white house and the federal reserve said just blithely: everything is ok, no worry, be happy.

  20. #20 Dunc
    September 30, 2008

    Is anybody else wondering if they knocked this one back so that they can make a killing when they pass something similar next week? Suddenly “insider trading” takes on a different meaning.

    Maybe I’m just too cynical…

  21. #21 Greg Laden
    September 30, 2008

    Orac: The bill was a shit sandwich that the President and Congress were trying to get the American people to take a big bite of and like it. Its failure is not all that bad a thing.

    You are probably right. Clearly, a ‘bailout’ is going to have to happen but the pre-bill hype is the actual, proximate cause of the post-vote drop. And the bill could be much better.

  22. #22 Boyd
    September 30, 2008

    The bailout is a bad idea. The loans that banks were forced to make because of the ill-conceived CRA are starting to go bad like everybody who was paying attention said they would. The banks who were forced into making these loans wisely sold those bad pieces of paper like they were allowed to do because it was the right thing to do. I say, let the properties get repossessed, have the institutions recoup their money as best they can, and allow the market to stabilize on its own. Most the people who got loans because of the CRA and like laws did not deserve them in the first place and need to be moved out of the market for the good of all. And best of all it can be done with out gooferment interference.

  23. #23 Greg Laden
    September 30, 2008

    There is a larger scale moral/ethical issue here that you are leaving aside, Boyd. For a decade or so, the “american dream” or the “american way” was linked culturally and in all the rhetoric flying around to home ownership. In the neighborhoods I’ve been living in, which are marginal, home ownership was seen and touted and pushed and hailed and preached by EVERYBODY as the way to stabilize, save, preserve, rehabilitate, and so on and so forth.

    Home ownership …Home ownership …Home ownership …Home ownership … more more more.

    Part of this is public money to help people with their down payment, or habitat for humanity projects, and on and so forth. But part of this is also related to these mortgages that are going belly up.

    When we sit back and let the market and the people in it suffer the consequences of bad decisions, a lot of people who are just barely making it are going to get truly screwed. I know one person who is losing her house (mom, dad, two kids out on the street). A legislative choice being made in Washington will determine if people like her are going to share the blame … at the expense of everything they have … or not.

    I am very uncomfortable with the idea that nothing should be done, even though I totally get that maybe nothing should be done.

  24. #24 Boyd
    September 30, 2008

    “home ownership was seen and touted and pushed and hailed and preached by EVERYBODY as the way to stabilize, save, preserve, rehabilitate, and so on and so forth.”

    Home ownership is good I admit. But nobody in their right mind encourages people to undertake debt when they have no assets or means to pay. Not that groups like ACORN didn’t do this, but that no sane individuals advocated it.

    “When we sit back and let the market and the people in it suffer the consequences of bad decisions, a lot of people who are just barely making it are going to get truly screwed. I know one person who is losing her house (mom, dad, two kids out on the street). A legislative choice being made in Washington will determine if people like her are going to share the blame … at the expense of everything they have … or not.”

    That is the nature of facing the consequences of your bad decisions. You screw it up and up will likely be hurt by it. They should have known better than to listen to fast talking con artists and the banks should have said “No, this is an unjust law we will not obey” and forced the courts to rule in each and every case of a subprime loan. This whole crisis is the fault of those who supported CRA and ACORN, and refused to exercise oversight on Freddie and Fannie. In fact the rational position is that Gooferment should not be involved in the mortgage business at all. And those who proposed and voted for and supported or used CRA to commit fraud in a truly just world would be forced to make restitution from their own pockets or would be hung till dead with their vital organs being sold to make good on the balance of their fraud. This may seem harsh, unkind and unfeeling but I am a harsh, unkind and unfeeling person who has very little sympathy for people who feel that they have a right to take other peoples money and use it to do harm. Whether in this situation or in any other situation in the world.

    BWS

  25. #25 Greg Laden
    September 30, 2008

    OK, Boyd, now you’ve forced my hand!

    Truth and reality check. If you are NOT one of the people getting screwed by this crisis, you are more likely to say “Those dummies should not have made the decision they made, and now it is just too bad and they have to pay for it”

    So, what happens when a hurricane comes through your neighborhood and destroys one third of the houses (yours included) and the insurance companies go belly up and can’t pay out a dime.

    Tough luck, Boyd. The people who’s houses got destroyed … in that one third of the population … should have known better. They were taking the risk to buy a house that (fill in the post hoc explanation as to why their houses were the one’s destroyed).

    The only people who should not get bailed out are registered Republicans. Republicans are against regulations and against helping others, so they should go down on this one. That should save at least a little money and teach those cold hearted bastards a lesson at the same time!

  26. #26 Stephanie Z
    September 30, 2008

    Boyd, suggesting that the government shouldn’t be in the mortgage business ignores the great success of the FHA. In fact, the FHA has done a much better job than the private banks. So much for your “Gooferment.”

    In fact, I think the problem stems from putting a government initiative in the hands of institutions that have vastly different goals than the government does. I never really bought “privatization is so much more efficient,” but this really underscores how wrong that idea is.

  27. #27 Boyd
    September 30, 2008

    Why limit the punishment to Republicans. They in this case are largely not at fault. It was not lack of regulation. It was and is overregulation. The CRA is the product of a Democratic President. And the Democrats in Congress pushed it through. It is a direct result of the CRA and groups like ACORN that we have this crisis. The banks were trying to make a profit in such an environment. And no sane individual decries making a profit.

    Stephanie Z. – There should not have been any such government initiative. And since we have never really tried it how would you know that privatization would not work in this industry. The only thing gooferment has tried to do in this with the overregulation is to eliminate the profit from capitalistic activities. And that skews the market and we get what we have today. An overregulated industry that is in trouble because of the overregulation.

    BWS

  28. #28 Stephanie Z
    September 30, 2008

    Boyd, you do know that the vast majority of the mortgage business is private, right?

    I’m saying these loans should not have been in the hands of private companies specifically because they were part of a policy that had nothing to do with making a profit. If it weren’t for people who can’t spell government, much less appreciate what it’s there for, the intiative would have stayed in the hands of an agency like the FHA. As I pointed out and you ignored, the FHA has done a great job promoting home ownership among those who have difficulty qualifying for commercial mortgages. It’s been a self-supporting agency. (Is this why the banks ended up with the business from the new intitiative–the scent of profit on the wind?)

    And I have zero sympathy/tolerance for either the argument that the poor, helpless investment banks and insurance agencies were forced into fraud or that they have less political clout than ACORN. Try again.

  29. #29 Boyd
    September 30, 2008

    “Boyd, you do know that the vast majority of the mortgage business is private, right?”

    Of course I do. Those are not the ones causing the problems. It is the subprime – meaning bad credit risk- loans that are causing the problem. It is high risk bad loans that ACORN is responsible for making sure get done. These people were never able to repay, but the lending institutions were held to a law that said – “make the loan!” When given the chance to do the right thing for their shareholder and make profit by selling off those loans, yes they did just that. And Freddie and Fannie who bought all that bad paper then bundled them up with a few good loans and then resold the whole thing as an investment. No one should have bought this crap. But they did. And some other things as well that were even more risky based upon bad mortgages. And now the whole thing is falling apart. And I should not be held responsible because other people made bad financial decision. You got a mortgage you should not have and defaulted – too bad, go back to paying rent, foreclosure. You did not sell off your bad paper like you should have – too bad, take the hit and foreclose. You bought bad paper and did not find a way to defraud people into buying it – too bad; you’re a criminal go to jail, along with the criminal who blackmailed the banks, ect, into making the loans in the first place. You bought these bad instruments – too bad you should have looked into them. I am sick and tired of people saying that I am responsible for others bad decisions because they will be hurt. ACORN is a criminal enterprise and they need to investigate and the people involved made to pay restitution to the innocent people like me that will be hurt in all this. And then send them away to jail where they can work for the rest of their lives paying off that debt. And if they refuse I am in favor repossessing their vital organs, selling them and distributing the money to the innocent victims. Also the people who voted for and gave us the CRA should have this done as well.

    And if it has nothing to do with making a profit, the loan or mortgage should not be made in the first place. And yes I ignored the FHA thing. It is beside the point. There own website says that they enable the people that should not get mortgages in the first place to get them. They should not be there. If allowed to, a private mortgage insurer would do a much more efferent job of insuring them.

    Whether you have sympathy for the argument or not, it still is true. The current crisis is the fault of ACORN and the people who foisted the CRA off on us. Whether they are on the left or right of the single BOYN party. CRA should never have been and ACORN should go away. Preferably by having all involved going to jail. Forever. To make good on the damage they caused.

    BWS

  30. #30 Stephanie Z
    September 30, 2008

    Boyd, ignoring the evidence that contradicts the conclusions you walked in with doesn’t make it go away. It just means that no one takes you seriously enough to listen to anything else you have to say.

  31. #31 Elizabeth
    September 30, 2008

    Boyd,

    We will punish the Republicans because they are asking for it. This is not complicated.

  32. #32 Boyd
    October 1, 2008

    Stephanie – What evidence. All the evidence when looked at rationally supports my conclusion.

    Elizabeth – How are they asking for it? They did the right thing by rejecting the bailout. They are by and large not as responsible as the Democrats are for the initial situation. So how are they asking for it when they are lots less responsible for the crisis? And while they do not go far enough, they go in small steps towards they correct direction of less government. It is because they have the same pathological trust of government that the Democrats do that I am not a Republican either.

    BWS

  33. #33 Stephanie Z
    October 1, 2008

    Boyd, you just keep telling yourself that. Whatever you do, don’t look up “rational” in a dictionary. You’ll feel much better that way.

  34. #34 Boyd
    October 1, 2008

    The one that applies in my case is the one referring to truthful and logical. If you have evidence present it. You have shown none so far. In my case the actions of the Democrats are public record. Clinton and the democrats in congress came up with CRA. He signed it. They are primarily responsible for it. CRA was used by groups such as and like ACORN to blackmail lenders into making bad loans that should never have been made. Also a matter of public record. In fact their own record – look at their website where they mention their success at increasing the home and business ownership of poor people. That is actual evidence. Feelings don’t count.

    BWS

    [edit] Adjective
    rational (comparative more rational, superlative most rational)

    Positive
    rational
    Comparative
    more rational
    Superlative
    most rational

    Characterized by truth or logic.
    (arithmetic) (no comparative or superlative) Of a number, capable of being expressed as the ratio of two integers.

    [edit] Synonyms
    (characterized by truth or logic): logical

    [edit] Antonyms
    (characterized by truth or logic): illogical, irrational, nonsensical
    (arithmetic): irrational

    [edit] Derived terms
    rationality

    [edit] Related terms
    rationale

    [edit] Translations
    [show ?]characterized by truth or logic
    Arabic: ??????
    Dutch: rationeel, rationele, redelijk, redelijke, verstandelijk, verstandelijke
    Finnish: järkevä, rationaalinen
    Hungarian: racionális, ésszer?
    Italian: razionale
    Japanese: ????(??????, g?ritekina)
    Polish: racjonalny m., racjonalna f., racjonalne n.
    Portuguese: racional
    Swedish: rationell
    Telugu: ??????????? (heatubaddamaina)

    [show ?]arithmetic
    Czech: racionální
    Dutch: rationeel, rationele
    Finnish: rationaali-
    French: rationnel m., rationnelle f.
    Hungarian: racionális
    Italian: razionale
    Japanese: ???(????, y?rino)
    Polish: wymierny m., wymierna f., wymierne n.
    Portuguese: racional
    Swedish: rationell

    [edit] Noun
    Singular
    rational
    Plural
    rationals

    rational (plural rationals)

    (mathematics) A number that can be expressed as the quotient of two integers.
    The quotient of two rationals is again a rational.
    Retrieved from “http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/rational”

  35. #35 Stephanie Z
    October 1, 2008

    Boyd, you’re the one ignoring the FHA because you don’t feel they should be there if their mission is not to make a profit. Their mission is to extend home loans to people not previously eligible for mortgages. It’s the same mission private lenders were given. The fact that they’ve been successful and private lenders have not means the problem is not in the mission but in the execution.

    You can claim rationality. You can ignore evidence. You can be taken seriously. You just can’t do all three at the same time.

  36. #36 Elizabeth
    October 1, 2008

    Boyd, it is ridiculous to suggest that the Republicans are anything less that totally responsible for this mess. I assume from this point onward that you are in their employ in some way.

  37. #37 Boyd
    October 1, 2008

    Stephaney – FHA should not be there because it is not up to the US government to help or to give a home loan to anybody anywhere under any circumstances. This is not feeling this is inherent in the 10th amendment to the constitution.

    Elizabeth – Then show where the Republicans were totally responsible for the CRA. Show where they helped groups like ACORN. If you can do that, if you can prove that, I will believe. But to say that they are responsible when all the evidence shows that they did not write the CRA, did not sign it into law, and that most of them opposed it is wrong. And most of them opposed groups like ACORN as well. But if show that they helped to fund them I will accept that they are also responsible for the mess created by CRA and by ACORN and associated ilk.

    For the record – I am a Libertarian. We are not republicrats, we are not touchy-feely types, we are not idiots and we are not in favor of anything but the absolute minimum of institutional gooferment and the absolute maximum of personal responsibility and liberty.

    Do not insult me with a Republican label when I have only posted rational and truthful comments here. And the rational and truthful part of my personality also prevents me from being a Demoncrat.

    BWS

  38. #38 Greg Laden
    October 1, 2008

    Boyd, you are getting dangerously close to the Bachmann Doctrine with this argument.

  39. #39 Stephanie Z
    October 1, 2008

    Boyd, of course you’re a Libertarian. Nobody else is in such a screaming panic just at the moment to deny basic, evident truths about what has happened to our economy.

    However, along with all your little Libertarian buddies, it’s time for you to learn just how much you and your absurd theories about the world have been boosted by having people in power who would echo whatever you had to say. This thing that’s happening right here, right now, where no one is listening no matter how hard you stamp your feet and say, “but I’m right”? That’s a tiny hint of what it feels like to be powerless. That’s what it feels like when there is no government protecting you from the will of the majority. Consider yourself lucky that there’s still a government protecting you from the screaming mobs who know that their lost money is lining Libertarian pockets.

    Now you have a choice. You can stamp your feet all the harder and get bruises and blisters, or you can shut up and learn something from all this. The lesson to take home and think about while you nurse your feet is that the only reason you don’t think you need government is that you’re one of the people it’s been helping all along.

  40. #40 Boyd
    October 1, 2008

    Stephanie – You are clueless. Your post above shows that. Government help best when it stays the hell out of my way and my aim. No money not honestly earned lines my pockets. And it is a .40 Taurus that is protection form the mobs. Government has only helped people that refuse to help themselves. Who refuse to put in an honest days labor for an honest days pay. Who refuse to actually put forth the effort to qualify for a loan. Instead they rely on a government to steal my earnings to pay for their living. What is happening now is that they have started to steal so much that there is starting to be less and less to steal. Because they have stolen it already, or the owners of the wealth have moved it to where it is much more protected from theft by government taxation. And this bailout is nothing more than a theft from future generations to protect the thieves and con artists of this one. The plain truth is that the people who received loans via CRA and the efforts of ACORN were never going to pay it back in the first place. And ACORN knew this. The creators of the CRA knew this. This is completely the fault of those barrowers, those creators, and groups like ACORN. And you are the one saying “My plan to steal from those who earned and to give to those who refuse to produce has failed. And I blame you for not doing more to impoverish yourself.” And then of course you stamp you little feet and cry.

    I am a Libertarian because I recognize the fact that I own my life and the products derived from it are mine to dispose of however I see fit. And because I recognize that I have a right to defend my life and those aforementioned products with whatever amount of force needed. Even if I have shoot and kill the members of that mob that whish to steal what little is mine because they refuse to earn their own.

    BWS

  41. #41 Stephanie Z
    October 1, 2008

    A Taurus? How cute. Do let me know how reloading works for you while you’re stuck in the middle of the mob. About as well as your mind-reading tricks, I’m guessing.

  42. #42 Greg Laden
    October 1, 2008

    Stephanie – You are clueless.

    That is the funniest thing I’ve seen all week and I know a lot of clowns.

    The thing about the Taurus is funny too. Boyd, I happen to know that you are very seriously out gunned here. Literally.

  43. #43 Stephanie Z
    October 1, 2008

    It’s also very cute that he thinks anyone is going to give him enough warning to get his hands on the gun. I wouldn’t.

  44. #44 Boyd
    October 1, 2008

    Hand gun fit is an individual thing. I found S & W ackward, and Ruger was a bit on the expensive side. Then I used a Taurus. It was light even with a full 15 round clip. It seemed like it was an extention of my arm. Smooth action. And reload was actually very easy. The clip release did not have the stickyness some semi-autos seem to have.

    What do you use?

    BWS

  45. #45 Stephanie Z
    October 1, 2008

    Boyd, really, telling people the extent or composition of your arsenal? Amateur.

  46. #46 Greg Laden
    October 1, 2008

    I use a spear.

    And a few well placed man traps.

  47. #47 Boyd W. Smith
    October 2, 2008

    RE: Bachmann

    I read the editorial she wrote. She did not mention race once. She ignored it. As was proper. And her analysis was spot on totally and absolutely correct in every possible way. And any one who tries to use race to smear her is a racist them selves and an idiot to boot. And to be clear Greg Laden – I am calling you an idiot. You analysis are full of crap. You pander to the lowest in our society and advocate socialism. The absolutely worst system of economics devised by Mankind. I have not read your bio, but I hope that you have nothing to do with educating our young people as any you touch will undoubtedly be unable to but two thought together in a cogent form. You sir are despicable and need to be discarded upon the ash heap of history and left to rot. You are what the greatest philosopher of all time, the great Ayn Rand, referred to as a moocher. And as such you need to hurry up and leave, go away, vanish before your evil ideas contaminate and pollute any more of our world.

    BWS

  48. #48 Stephanie Z
    October 2, 2008

    Oh, Boyd, it’s so much better than that. Greg teaches teachers. Enjoying the powerlessness yet?