There's an old expression that if you're digging a ditch for yourself, it might be a good idea to put down the shovel.
Yet no matter how many times we clearly see this government rescue isn't rescuing the markets, the government just seems to want to keep rescuing.
First, banks. Now, apparently insurance companies.
Uncle Sam wants to take stakes in some of the sicker players. He's doing it for you and insists he'll be just a passive investor — Which is sort of like Tony Soprano stopping by your house and insisting he's just looking around.
My friends, Ronald Reagan was right: Be afraid when a politician comes by and says, "I'm from the government and I'm here to help."
Don't believe me? Or our markets? Or the nearly 2,000-point tumble in the Dow since they started kicking this rescue around?
Then believe Argentina.
That's right — "don't cry for me" Argentina. But a lot of folks are crying in Argentina.
Here's why: The market there lost 26 percent this week. You heard me right: More than a quarter of its value in one week.
You know why?
It wants to nationalize its pension funds. It saw corruption there and felt it the government's place to stomp out corruption there, by taking them all over there.
Well, apparently markets don't much like that idea there. They're tumbling there.
We should take note: A government that means well can unwittingly trigger a sell-off that looks, well, mean.
Don't you find it odd that the more we want to fix, the greater our fix and the greater our sell-off?
I know a lot of us don't look at markets beyond us — and certainly not at markets like Argentina.
But take a look at what's happening there. At what the government wants to do there. And don't just cry for them there. Cry for us attempting to do the exact same thing... here.
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