Traders in the Chicago pits aren't, as CNBC commentator Rick Santelli claimed the other day, America. They are a very small demographic with an admittedly out sized influence on the day to day gyrations of the nation that, despite their obvious power are no more representative of the United States as a whole then Chicago hairdressers. In fact, traders who work at the exchanges there and elsewhere have, over their fairly lengthy history, quite often been big time mess makers who have grifted with the worst of them. And here's what Mr. Santelli is most wrong about, that President Obama's plan to help distressed homeowners "promotes bad behavior." Plainly that is an asinine statement. No, what the proposed plan, whose merits or lack there of I am not commenting on here, MIGHT be promoting, is the idea that those who make mistakes, either through, stupidity, avarice, or otherwise, should not, for better or worse, be left to their fate. This is a debatable stand, philosophically and practically, but what is not debatable is the bogus idea suggested by Mr. Santelli that the prospective recipients of Federal assistance are, in the main, bad actors, perpetrators of fraud, or some other sort of illegality.
No doubt there are a substantial number of bad actors, though I defy anyone, and that means you, Mr. Santelli, to offer any reliable numbers where this burning issue is concerned.
As for government promoting bad behavior, well, sir, since you've essentially opened that theme up for our consideration, I'd like to offer that the list of "bad behavior promotions" coming from government is much longer and contains far more egregious wrongs than the one you've, of late, cast your indignation upon.