U.S. Representative Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas Dist. 19) was on the radio this morning explaining why he voted "no" on the big financial bailout bill, and he asks what's next, bailout airlines? The auto industry? From his website:
"When I voted today, I voted for the principle that more market-based solutions rather than costly government interventions are the best way to resolve the current financial difficulties we are facing."
Likewise, from Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas Dist. 11):
We cannot make it habit to bail out companies when they make bad decisions, instead of allowing them to learn from their mistakes the same way that everyone else does – the hard way.
So here we have something that sounds like fiscal conservatism from two U. S. Representatives who were among the most outspoken supporters of the budget busting farm bill, about which Mr. Conaway even bragged of overriding President Bush's veto. It's hard to take them seriously now when they were so eager to hand out millions of taxpayer dollars to cotton farmers.
Just as a reminder, from ewg.org we learn that residents in the counties comprising Mr. Conaway's district received government farm bill handouts in the sum of $1.47 billion between the years 1995 - 2006. And Mr. Neugebauer's District 19, $4.91 billion.
So does the economy need the financial bailout? I don't know. But with our politicians playing election year football with it while handing out money with one hand and gesturing "STOP" with the other, it's difficult to take them seriously.