Free markets are based on greed, and you have to trust that something beneficial can come from that greed. When that greed is reigned it, some (or even most) of us can stand to benefit. When it's not reigned in, only a few stand a benefit, and most of us are hurt by it. You just don't understand the concept of moderation, do you?
We're clearly at a point in which we cannot trust good things to come out of greed because the greed is way too excessive.
Violate that trust and the free market will reject you. As it rejected Enron. It's now no longer there.
Enron was exposed as a fraud, and they had no business being in business in the first place. They were losing billions of dollars and using offshore entities to hide the losses, enabling their books to look great, their stock price to stay high, and their execs to engage in illegal insider trading.
They had to file for bankruptcy not because the free market rejected them. They had to file for bankruptcy because their company was exposed as a complete sham.
Sure, it has cost a lot of people a lot of money. But the positive thing is that, it's no longer costing a lot of people a lot of money.
Riiight. Entire retirement savings wiped out for tens of thousands of people, and you think it's no longer costing people a lot of money. LOL.
And what happens when the next Enron pop-ups up? Or how about the next WorldCom? Or the next Madoff Investment Securities?
The thing is, for most companies, even if they violate a trust with the public, they continue without skipping a beat.
How many of these companies involved in accounting scandals do you suppose are still in business?
I would say a majority of them are.
So much for rejecting these companies, huh?
Let's look at bad government policy.
It rarely gets revoked. Even if the evidence is staring them in the eye, it takes eons for politicians to admit and correct their mistakes.
Policies get overturned all the time, and when they are, bad things usually happen. Glass-Steagall for instance. That's why the government takes its time to repeal regulations.
On the other hand, when government adopts new policies, especially those affecting businesses, the policies are phased in over time. Not because the government wants to be slow, but because the companies being affected * and moan like crazy.
This thread is about TARP. TARP is a mistake. A huge collosal mistake, HUGE.
You really have no clue about TARP. You can Monday morning quarterback all you want, but was it a colossal mistake to even attempt to avert a global economic meltdown? Really? Besides, what's done is done, and we did avert a global economic meltdown--for now.
But as I said already, the biggest mistake is not adopting new measures to avoid having to bailout these companies ever again. Re-enacting Glass-Steagall, breaking up the banks, and enacting a Sherman Antitrust Act-type statute to prevent banks from getting "too big to fail" is what we need to do.
No measure to prevent companies from becoming too big to fail is going to happen magically by itself in the free market. I can tell you that. You really think having to go through a period global depression is going to "learn these companies" not to become too big to fail ever again completely ON THEIR OWN? LOL. Sorry, but reality doesn't work that way.