It's gut check time. The attempt by Treasury Secretary Paulson to put a gun to the head of Congress and terrify them into forking over a $700 billion blank check to the Bush administration in 48 hours has failed. Now what?
Most Americans would just as soon the Masters of the Universe were allowed to sink in their own folly. They had the party; let them clean up the mess. But, looking at sinking housing values and shaken retirement accounts, … broader lessons need to be drawn; larger and more permanent reforms are needed. One thing should be clear: the conservative era is over. The collapse of Wall Street is to the market fundamentalists what the fall of the Berlin Wall was to communism. It's over. The right has proved once more that it cannot be trusted to run the government it scorns. A trillion dollar debacle in Iraq. A trillion dollar bust on Wall Street. Hundreds of billions pocketed by Big Pharma and Big Oil. It is time for a reckoning.