March 11, 2010

Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better

Chris Dodd, not yet retired, has come up with yet another plan to usurp non-governmental entities and/or powers and consolidate them under the auspices of the federal government. Individually, Democrats may truly believe that the government can do certain things better than the private sector, but collectively, they are turning America not into a nanny state, but rather a highly centralized authority with far too much control over the economy among other aspects of civilization.

What I fail to understand is why organizations like the ACLU, all the way down to left-leaning individuals who see big brother around every corner when it comes to everything don't seem to see the compounded results of incrementally passing bits of power, and bits of freedom to the government. Surely, civil liberties are impacted whenever a government tries to take over a part of the economy, no? Does anyone really believe that the government can make decisions better than companies can make for themselves? Or better than we can make for ourselves?

The NY Times has the details (HT Amanda Carpenter) which include;

A new “resolution authority” to seize and dismantle any systemically important financial institution on the verge of failure.
and this,

Currently, the Federal Reserve oversees bank holding companies and state-chartered banks that are part of the Fed system; the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency oversees national banks; the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation oversees state banks that are not members of the Fed system; and the Office of Thrift Supervision oversees savings and loans.

Mr. Dodd has expressed support for a proposal that would leave the Fed with oversight over only the largest bank holding companies, those with $100 billion or more in assets, currently totaling 23.

Wikipedia provides a reasonable summary of the purposes of the Federal Reserve;
  • To address the problem of banking panics
  • To serve as the central bank for the United States
  • To strike a balance between private interests of banks and the centralized responsibility of government
  • To supervise and regulate banking institutions
  • To protect the credit rights of consumers
  • To manage the nation's money supply through monetary policy to achieve the sometimes-conflicting goals of
  • maximum employment
  • stable prices, including prevention of either inflation or deflation
  • moderate long-term interest rates
  • To maintain the stability of the financial system and contain systemic risk in financial markets
  • To provide financial services to depository institutions, the U.S. government, and foreign official institutions, including playing a major role in operating the nation’s payments system
  • To facilitate the exchange of payments among regions
  • To respond to local liquidity needs
  • To strengthen U.S. standing in the world economy
Now if the Federal government wants to strip away some of that and bring it in house, you have to ask - does the government think it can do any better? Like it has with health care reform, Medicaid waste or the post office? Do you trust them to get this right? The Democrats seem to be the party of continual onslaught of liberty. It seems as though they won't be happy until the government controls every aspect of your life.

"Hey, you want to grab a coffee and a donut?"
"Sure, let's call Central Planning."

Interestingly the GOP does not support this but Chris Dodd is pressing ahead because there's an urgency to it. Not an urgency to problem resolution - his mention of urgency is related to the countdown clock on the Senate;

“Clearly we need to move along,” Mr. Dodd said, speaking after Mr. Corker’s news conference. “What I’m facing mostly is what I call the 101st senator, and that is called the clock, and particularly, in an election year, that clock becomes a rather demanding member.”

In other words, get it done while you still have the votes. Senator Dodd, who is not going to run for re-election knows that time is running out for Democrats, and anything they want to get done has to be done fast (consequently without much deliberation). He may have learned from the Scott Brown victory in January derailing the Democrats health care push that time is short, but he hasn't learned that the Senate was built to require bi-partisanship. It was built to require a lot of thought on matters. As much as Republicans will rue those same designs when they are back in the majority in 2010 or 2012, it's a fact of political life in America.

Then again, facts are often mere inconveniences to Democrats.

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