Monday, September 29, 2008

Bail 'Em Out... And Hang 'Em

The proposed bailout of banks and the reckless gamblers who run them may be a necessary evil, but even if it must proceed in order to stave off an economic catastrophe, that doesn't mean the villains who are culpable should get off scot free.

If honest Americans must pay their debts, and many see their savings and investments wiped out, or lose their jobs in the mounting economic crisis, then these barons of finance and their political enablers should feel our pain, too. Bail out the institutions so as to keep the economy afloat, but punish the perpetrators. A good old fashioned hanging would do nicely -- say the entire executive boards of all the banks in question, as well as politicians who encouraged them to make risky loans to unqualified borrowers in the quest to keep the housing value bubble expanding. And if that doesn't get us to 1,000 condemned, take in a few loan brokers, title company execs and real estate agents. Then confiscate their property to liquidate as much of the bad debt as possible.

And do it all on TV. Let the people see justice in action as those suits dangle from the gallows. And let the people know that, at very least, those guilty did not go unpunished.

I'm half joking. Just half.