Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Innocents Compensation Board...Make Main Street Whole

The Innocents Compensation Fund

Author: Sherwood Martinelli, aka Royce Penstinger

In the past say 18 months we have watched the United States Economy unravel, have watched as our mortgages became upside-down, watched as our life savings invested in 401K’s have been devastated, and in some cases made worthless. We have sat in our living rooms stunned as our governments refused to take adequate action against Illegal Aliens that were lowering our wage base, decimating our incomes, stealing our jobs. As the United States Congress tried to ram an Amnesty down our throats we shook our heads in disbelief that our elected officials refused to abide by the wishes of the majority. Against our will, the House of Representatives approved a bailout that will eventually cost us as taxpayers trillions of dollars. Many of us have slid into depression as the stock market crashed, sat in our living rooms mourning as the DOW Jones plummeted under the 9000 mark. Can we be blamed when we ask, “My country, why have thou abandoned me?”

George W. Bush and his advisors including Secretary Paulson are telling us to remain calm that they are working at finding solutions, telling us to be patient and give their bailout a chance to work. With each passing day another pundit such as Ali Velshi trots out in front of the cameras telling us everything is going to be all right, assuring us that we have almost HIT BOTTOM.

What has not been talking about, is those of us who have been destroyed through no fault of our own, where is our bailout? Is it fair that the least deserving in this crisis are being made whole, while the rest of us (the middle class) are asked to pick up the pieces, are asked to sacrifice, asked to tighten up our belts, grin and bear the fact that we are being asked to pay the bill for those who either A) through greed have robbed us blind and crashed our economy, or B) secured mortgages that they could never afford.

If we roll AIG into the mix, the bailout of Wall Street is already costing us as taxpayers right at $1 trillion dollars. In addition to this, we have the FED taking over failed banks, and offering to recapitalize others. Secretary Paulson announced the other day that the treasury would now start lending money on the short market. Additionally, there is a plan afoot to buy mortgages (bad paper) at FACE VALUE from those holding it, then renegotiating a new mortgage on the lowered value of the home with a fixed rate 30 year loan with those in foreclosure. What about the rest of us? It is those very mortgages and foreclosure that have lowered our home values to the point where we are not in upside-down mortgages. Where is the fairness and justice for all in rewarding those who caused the mess while doing nothing for those of us that have paid the ultimate price for their misdeeds and stupidity?

This crisis has already cost our retirement account over $300,000 dollars, and our home has lost over $100,000 in equity. What had seemed like a perfect road to retirement at 60 is now a pathway to a nightmare of broken dreams and promises, a working life that will now have to be extended for years, perhaps even more than a decade. We actually heard John McCain the other day say that our Social Security Benefits (our entitlements) will have to be cut, scaled back as we all pitch in to get through these turbulent times. Excuse me, but each time we get a paycheck, there is a deduction from our pay that is supposed to be matched by our employer and put into a SAFE AND SECURE fund so that we have a safety net, a guaranteed income in our Golden Years. As of today, we have been paying into that fund for almost 40 years! We were told, we were promised by the Social Security Administration that our funds were secure, and based on our contributions; we would receive some $2100 a month in retirement if we retired at the age of 64. Now we are being told, “Sorry Charlie, we lied to you, we have squandered away your security.”

Again, where is our bailout, where is a fund meant to make us whole? Where is the Congress in passing emergency legislation that lets us write these losses off of our taxes this year? Where is a fund, or a plan to renegotiate our mortgages based on the current depressed values of our homes? Where is emergency legislation that allows us to take money out of our 401K’s and Retirement funds without penalties? Where is emergency legislation to change bankruptcy laws, and to put and end to predatory interest rates and fees being charged by credit card companies? Simply stated, when is our government going to bring parity, fairness and justice to the table, when is our government going to take action to make those of us who have played by the rules whole again?


JGillman said...

Thank you FDR for social security, the great instrument of government allowing us to be so trusting that we would always have a little something.. Thank you Johnson for an expansion of the cost of Social Security from a max of $96 a year to what it is now.. Thank you Clinton for the taxation on the Social Security, because Government spent the earlier contributions already.

All a Ponzi scheme. And Government puts people in Jail for running such rackets as individuals. God save America now.

Royce Penstinger said...

Sadly, not even sure God can save us from ourselves and our government at this point, regardless of who gets elected as our next president.