By Laura Smith
September 24, 2008
Congress’ newest plan to bailout many U.S. financial firms is not only affecting the economy at large, but other communities as well. Citizens of Elon, North Carolina have their serious concerns and opinions about the plan. Residents are worried about the national economy as well as the effects it may have on the town of Elon itself.
“It’s important to the town that the country be as sound as it can be,” said Elon Town Manager, Mike Dula. “If a bailout can achieve some stability, I think it can be positive.”
The proposed plan came when Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, and members of the Bush administration asked Congress to pass a bailout plan for U.S. financial firms in the wake of the recent financial crisis.
The bailout is in the amount of $700 billion with 26 firms currently under investigation by the FBI. According to the plan, the bailout would amount to the equivalent of $2,333 from every American citizen.
“I think there may be a need for a bailout but it needs to be better thought out; there needs to be greater oversight” said Elon University communications professor, David Copeland. “We’re already spending a ton of money in Iraq. We can’t continue to borrow without having revenue come in. That’s gonna be a huge problem.”
This week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Read will meet to form a strategy that will be proposed in both chambers of Congress.
Elon University economics professor, Mark Kurt, has strong opinions about the bailout as well.
“If we do nothing, there may be a serious recession,” he said. “We don’t know what the future will hold, so it makes for a tough decision.”
Kurt remains positive however. “You have to be careful with these sorts of bailouts, but free markets tend to work themselves out.”
The Bush administration is currently urging acceptance of the deal this week in hopes of restoring faith in the U.S. economy and bring order back to the country.
“It’s kind of a slippery slope,” said Elon University student, Sarah Findle. “It might just end up getting worse.”
Elon citizens can only hope that economic order will be restored and the town will not be as directly affected.
“If it works, it’s worth it,” Dula said. “People would be well off to have a stable economy.”