Cal  Thomas

Now, noted Limbaugh, Democratic leaders want to rush through a "rescue" bill to "bailout" those who made wrong decisions and now want to escape accountability. It is a good point. Many noted economists are opposed to the bailout plan, as are significant numbers of the American people, and even a substantial number of House Democrats. Never has "I'm from the government and I'm here to help you," sounded emptier. If there is such urgency in avoiding financial Armageddon, does the Rosh Hashanah holiday necessitate that non-Jewish members stop working toward a reasonable compromise? Would they quit for Christmas if another war broke out?

Before Democrats and some in the left-wing media add this fiasco to their list of indictments against Republicans, they might consider what Bill Clinton said on ABC's "Good Morning America" on Sept. 25. About his party's reluctance to place more restrictions on Fannie and Freddie, Clinton said, "I think the responsibility that the Democrats have may rest more in resisting any efforts by Republicans in the Congress, or by me when I was president, to put some standards and tighten up a little on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac."

As for the claim by House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank that the Republicans are to blame, The Wall Street Journal correctly noted in a Sept. 10 editorial, "(Frank's) record is close to perfect as a stalwart opponent of reforming the two companies, going back more than a decade. The first concerted push to rein in Fan and Fred in Congress came as far back as 1992, and Mr. Frank was right there, standing athwart. But things really picked up this decade, and Barney was there at every turn."

This mess has afforded conservative Republicans an opportunity to ask the public to throw out the Democratic majority and start over with a chastened and hopefully wiser Republican Party in the majority. But that will take leadership, a commodity that seems in short supply, like bulls on Wall Street.

Cal Thomas

Get Cal Thomas' new book, What Works, at Amazon.

Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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