“Looks like the Senate got sick of waiting for the House to get its act together,” said Jay Newton-Small in Time online. With the House out of session until Thursday, the Senate plans to vote on a revised version of the $700 billion financial rescue bill Wednesday. With added FDIC insurance for individual bank accounts and $100 billion in tax extensions, it will probably pass. “Which means the hurdle remains the House.”
The House better not flub it this time, said Thomas Friedman in The New York Times. Congress, many of whose members “I suspect can’t balance their own checkbooks,” shouldn’t sink a “complex rescue package” because of popular resentment. If this fails, “that Wall Street fat cat” will be fine. The rest of us won’t.
We deserve what we get, said George Will in The Washington Post. Much-vilified Wall Street only gave the public what it demanded—personal deficit spending, subsidized lives. Well, the House vote gave the public the “catharsis” it wanted. Now Congress must give us the “protection against obliteration of the financial system” we need.
Yes, but the bailout isn’t the fix, said Brian Wesbury in The Wall Street Journal. Instead, let’s dump mark-to-market accounting rules—which force banks to report potential losses as if they were cash losses. Those rules are what’s making solvent financial firms appear bankrupt, and changing them could “start the healing overnight.”