Click through to read Reich's five suggestions. He concludes:
Put yourself in the shoes of a member of Congress, including our two presidential candidates. The Treasury Secretary and Fed Chair have told you this is necessary to save the economy. If you don't agree, you risk a meltdown of the entire global financial system. Your own constituents' savings could go down with it. An election is six weeks away. Besides, in the last two days of trading, since rumors spread that the Treasury and the Fed were planning something of this sort, stock prices revived.
Now - quick -- what do you do? You have no choice but to say yes.
But you might also set some conditions on Wall Street.
The public doesn't like a blank check. They think this whole bailout idea is nuts. They see fat cats on Wall Street who have raked in zillions for years, now extorting in effect $2,000 to $5,000 from every American family to make up for their own nonfeasance, malfeasance, greed, and just plain stupidity. Wall Street's request for a blank check comes at the same time most of the public is worried about their jobs and declining wages, and having enough money to pay for gas and food and health insurance, meet their car payments and mortgage payments, and save for their retirement and childrens' college education. And so the public is asking: Why should Wall Street get bailed out by me when I'm getting screwed?
So if you are a member of Congress, you just might be in a position to demand from Wall Street certain conditions in return for the blank check.
Wall Streeters may not like these conditions. Well, you should tell them that the public doesn't like the idea of bailing out Wall Street. So if Wall Street doesn't accept these conditions, it doesn't get the blank check.Damned right! Americans are pissed off and should not stand for this ridiculous outrage.