"Route 66 is Main Street and we don't want this billionaire bailout"

Economic Unrest on Route 66

People are gathered right now in Albuquerque to protest the Wall Street bailout.

"Route 66 is the Mother Road. Route 66 IS Main Street," a man with a megaphone shouts, "And we don't want this billionaire bailout."

Economic Unrest on Route 66

The gathering has attracted Ron Paul supporters, Barack Obama supporters, and economic-minded independents but there's nary a political sign in sight, unless you count a couple of Ron Paul stickers on the back of this guy's sign.

One typically gauges the success of such a protest by the amount of follow-up media exposure. But for those wearing out shoe leather, the supportive honks of passing cars help too.

Today, there's plenty of both. Probably 50% of drivers are honking with approval and at least one local TV station (KOB) is onsite filming. It's a scene worth filming too, with Route 66-era optimism still palpable in the old De Anza Motor Lodge visible behind the protesters' gloomy signage. The setting feels poignantly like an Ernst Hass photo which only serves to remind me of the contrast.

Here are a few more photos from the protest:

Economic Unrest on Route 66

Economic Unrest on Route 66

Economic Unrest on Route 66

Economic Unrest on Route 66

Views: 34

Comment by JeSais on September 27, 2008 at 1:52pm
it's a red herring.... designed to distract us from the real issues...

from the The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene:

"Law 3 - Conceal Your Intentions.... Keep people off-balance and in the dark by never revealing the purpose behind your actions. If they have no clue what you are up to, they cannot prepare a defense. Guide them far enough down the wrong path, envelope them in enough smoke, and by the time they realize your intentions, it will be too late."
Comment by slamwagon on September 27, 2008 at 2:36pm
eh... this country could use a good dose of reality.

Get your victory gardens and rain barrels up and running asap!
Comment by chantal on September 27, 2008 at 5:08pm
JeSais, and here I thought all the other red herrings were distracting us from the underlying economic issues. For what, in your opinion, are the economic issues a red herring?
Comment by Gus on September 27, 2008 at 5:21pm
The idea of a government bailout is ugly, painful and probably very necessary. It has unfortunately illustrated how broken our national "leadership" really is - our Congress can't pull its head out of its collective *ss long enough to lead its way out of a wet paper bag. They need to drop the partisan politics, stop the grandstanding and pass a comprehensive, expensive bailout of our financial industries...with provisions to ensure that those companies do not profit as a result.

Anyone who says we don't need this bailout doesn't understand the issues, hasn't read the history of the great depression and has put way too much faith in the market. Herbert Hoover put his faith in the market's self-correcting ability back in 1929...didn't work very well for us then, either.

The government has fundamental responsibilities. Unfortunately, now that we're face-to-face with one of them, it seems our government has decided to forfeit the game.

This is a sad commentary on our political system and our Congress. Ridiculous. Disgusting.
Comment by JeSais on September 27, 2008 at 6:10pm
hmmm..... I guess I wasn't entirely clear. It's not that I don't think there is a financial crisis. I just have faith in the market-- long term. Look at WAMU. JP Morgan Chase just got a bargain basement deal. And Bank of American just bought Merrill Lynch for a song. Warren Buffet just scooped up a chunk of Goldman Sachs....

I just don't think it is a crisis of the magnitude to require Taxpayer bailout.

Why is it we can suddenly afford 700 BILLION dollars to bail out banks and we can't afford to spend money on healthcare, education, investing in alternative energy... etc etc etc...
Comment by Adelita on September 27, 2008 at 6:22pm
Dang, Chantal! Had I known this was a multi- million dollar website I woulda asked for a paycheck! All this time I've been volunteering...
Comment by chantal on September 27, 2008 at 7:40pm
Adelita, I'd have asked for a paycheck too ;-)

JeSais, why can we suddenly afford a financial market bailout when we previously couldn't afford healthcare, education, and alt energy? Now that's the billion dollar question ;-) Seriously, though, I'm not convinced the entire system is going to crumble but I do believe some kind of government intervention is necessary right now. And I do fear that the free market economy is not as inherently stable and self-balancing as we once believed it to be. Perhaps I'm being uncreative, but I don't see much of an alternative to more government oversight/regulation of our economic infrastructure.
Comment by freekbuoy on September 28, 2008 at 10:27am
The free market system doesn't work. Period. It doesn't account for the individual greed that certain persons who work their way to the top of the food chain have and who are thus willing to sacrifice all those below for their own personal ambition. Thus, we have billionaire CEOs and such making money hand over fist while those of us below pay whatever price they determine we must. The market isn't truly free when its puppet strings are manipulated by the greedy few. This is why we need to reverse Reagan's deregulation of everything and regulate the basic necessities of society: food, energy, transportation, housing, health care, banking, etc. Let the retail market be a free market, let the entertainment industry be a free market, let all those things that do not qualify as necessities be free markets. Just regulate the rest of it. Sure, it means lower profits for investors and higher initial tax investments by taxpayers, but it also means lower societal costs in the long run (i.e. tax money needed to fund social programs for the rising numbers of the poor, those who can't afford health care but suffer from poor health, etc.).
Comment by SweetCaroline on September 28, 2008 at 11:24am
My apologies to my late Dad (1909-1990). Sorry for rolling my eyes to the back of my skull whenever you said that the Repubs would take care of the fat cats and leave the working people in a Depression. You also said that if it were up to the Repubs we would all be in a soup line - Hoover promised a car in every garage and a chicken in every pot, but it was FDR who put the food on OUR table. You were right, Pop!
Comment by JeSais on September 28, 2008 at 11:46am
chantal... thankfully I just ask the questions and am not expected to come up with answers. As I write this it looks like some form of the bailout is happening. Hopefully the regulation will make some difference in the future. Although I would like to believe that people will always do what's right, there are too many instances where that is not the case. Even with regulation greed will entice.

Adelite, chantal, et al... you should ALL be getting a paycheck! I've said it before and I'll say it again, DCF rocks. I love that we can have CIVIL discourse.... I have not seen any really bad flames, even when folks disagree.... a testament to the folks steering this ship.


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