The Great Government Tulip Bailout


This just in from the San Francisco Chronicle’s Jon Carroll:

I did not issue any home loans to people who could obviously not
make their mortgage payments. I also didn’t deal in derivatives, which
I don’t really understand. It turns out that people who did deal in
derivatives didn’t understand them either, although they developed a
nice easy line of chatter to persuade rollers higher than myself to
enter the derivatives market.

But, you know, the back stairs need replacing, and I’d like to buy
some tulips. If you’re buying tulips, you really want to get a lot of
them because they look best when massed together. The people in Holland
know that. So I’d like a tulip bailout. I mean, it really wouldn’t even
be a bailout because I have given the government hundreds of thousands
of dollars over my long and generally productive life.

An entirely sensible plan. Read the whole thing here.


  1. Thanks for the link, Amy. I can see that I’m not alone in deciding that the only way to write about gardening this morning was to write about the new A.I.G. nationalization plan. Or maybe, it’s the other way around: The only way to begin to stomach the A.I.G. nationalization is to think about gardens.

  2. I’m wondering when someone is going to suggest that these Wall Street Welfare Kings start dating the Welfare Queens that were such social pariahs not too long ago? Wouldn’t that be an interesting reality show?!

  3. Excellent rant. My sentiments exactly – even if tulips are just like Wall St. – take your money, look pretty for awhile and then disappear forever.

  4. Using humor to allay our fears over economic disaster provides some relief from anxiety; but I think Wall Street and our government needs weeding.

  5. “Is this whole fiancial/mortgage debacle not any different from the tulipmania of the 1600’s?”

    Oh, it’s very very very different! In tulipmania, you had a choice. You could either begin to play the game and invest in little brown bulbs, or ….. you could sit on your money and wait till it crashed, leaving you with your money. But this time — us taxpayers don’t got no choice. We must play, and we must pay.

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