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Warren Buffett Says Gives Thanks For Uncle Sam’s Bailout Of The Economy

Leave it to Midwestern investment guru Warren Buffett to remind vocal naysayers how well the U.S. government has done stabilizing our economy. It’s something to reflect on this Thanksgiving.

In an Op-Ed piece for The New York Times this week, Buffett reminded those Americans who have short memories how close our country came to “an economic meltdown” two years ago, in September 2008. The headine, “Pretty Good for Government Work,” makes Buffett’s opinion pretty obvious.

Buffett reminds us that two years ago Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were in conservatorship; one Wall Street investment house was about to crumble and the other three were close to following; and the insurer AIG “was at death’s door.”

Corporate America wasn’t the only thing at risk, according to Buffett. Some 300 million Americans were about to see their jobs, 401(K)s and money-maret funds “turn into pumpkins and mice…a destructive economic force unlike any seen for generations had been unleasehed.” he wrote.

As Buffett saw it, the government was the only “counterforce” in a position to stop the onset of a modern day Great Depression. 

“Well, Uncle Sam, you delivered,” Buffett wrote. “People will second-guess your specific decisions; you can always count on that. But…overall, your actions were remarkably effective.”

Buffett gives credit to Ben Bernanke, Hank Paulson, Tim Geithner, Sheila Bair and even, albeit reluctantly, President Bush, for acting “with courage and dispatch.”

Otherwise, “the world would look far different now if you had not,” Buffett wrote, signing his piece “your grateful nephew.”   

Of course, the economy is not fixed. Unemployment is at 10 percent. Retail sales are just started to rebound. But we’re at a hell of a better place than we were. Apocalypse avoided.    


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