Forget Chicken Little & Father Knows Best, TRANSPARENCY, PLEASE!!

I’ve watched CNN & C-SPAN coverage of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act (EESA) debate. I appreciate the efforts involved parties have put into the EESA negotiations, but unfortunately, I am one of the majority of Americans who just says NO to the “Trust Me on This” way in which this administration has hood-winked and bamboozled the Legislatures, and these bodies have in turn, unwittingly, done the same to their constituencies, e.g., rushing into the IRAQ War.

I believe the legislators’ obligation is to the people who elected them, no matter the timing, election year of not, to represent, not 2nd guess voters’ will. If a legislator believes supporting this bill is ‘the right thing,’ a more appropriate action is to convince his/her constituency of this position, not vote for HR3997 despite what his/her electorate says. Instead each legislator should vote for or against whatever bill based on what we indicate we want. We don’t trust this administration, and are not interested in having another fathom WMD-type experience.

The FDIC and private sector seem to have done an adequate job with the Wachovia failure (no branch closings, no run on the bank, barely any media coverage) WITHOUT the HR3997 provisions, so I see no reason to rush a half-baked solution into law. Rep. Marcy Kaptur, Democrat, Ohio, is the most reasonable voice I’ve heard so far.

During Congress’ 1-day recess for Rosh Hanana, my request has been that my legislator, John Lewis, 5th District GA, do whatever is in his power to have the House Financial Services Committee meetings be open to the public, perhaps with hearings being broadcast online and on CNN & C-SPAN. The American public is not too dumb or angry to understand, we just seriously lack confidence in our administration and legislature, so I for one, want to see for myself the proposals themselves, and analyses of proposals. Secrecy breeds bondage, transparency generates freedom. Key questions that need to be answered:

1) How was the $700B figure derived? How are any dollar estimates for other proposals being calculated?
2) What are the fundamental principles underlying the recommendations of the VARIOUS PROPOSALS (not just HR3997) on WHO gets bailed out: weak firms, strong firms, or consumers via investment, loan or insurance. What are the fundamental problems and how do these proposals seek to address them?

3) What test scenarios have been completed to better understand the potential impact of these various proposals which occur for me as collections of inadequately examined and perhaps contradictory ideas? How can this level of examination (much like the reports on the impact of the presidential nominees’ tax plans) be included in the legislative process?

Let’s stop with all the party squabbling, Chicken Little performances, and Father Knows Best attitudes (you can read more about my explanation and disdain for this last one here - These ill-fated approaches would best be replaced with transparency, rational root cause analysis and creative, responsible problem-solving. As a constituent, please write to your Congress person and ask how you can support his/her ability to properly inform and represent you. I am open to any suggestions and feedback what I consider to be this more respectful and truly democratic representation-based approach.

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