The end of the beginning

If this economic chaos were caused by Wall Street revels, as President George Bush would have us believe, he’s the one with the hangover. He looks awful, like a frightened boy, as I watch his 8:45 a.m. televised address to the nation. Worse, the sniff he gave at the end of his comments, as he turned and walked away, was a signal that he believes his pitch will reassure investors.

When I heard last night that he was due to speak this morning, I assumed he was going to announce that the stock markets would close until bailout legislation was passed. He had no such plan, just the same old shoulder to the wheel that hasn’t worked thus far.

Let’s hope the market taught an important lesson to those legislators who voted against the bailout because they thought $700 billion was too much. After all, individual investors, pension funds and mutual funds lost far more yesterday, $1 trillion in one day.

Meanwhile, we’re left with the sad sight of George W. Bush in the final days of his watch when he couldn’t wind it up.

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