The Definition of Insanity (Rep. Trent Franks)

Albert Einstein is said to have opined that "the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."

No time in the history of the United States has the Congress' proclivity to throw excessive amounts of taxpayer dollars at a problem been as evident as in the now familiar "bailout" madness. When I voted both times against the $700 billion treasury bailout package last month, I stated that if we started down this path of nationalizing our financial sector, we would only see more bailouts to come.

People are awakening to the fact that over the past several months, this Democratic-led Congress has begun to plummet down a slippery slope of ineffective, government-managed, taxpayer-funded bailouts; and, as we have seen these past several months, the model of redistribution of wealth and government bailouts is neither effective nor sustainable.

Unfortunately, there is currently no indication where the bailout stampede will end.

Just as in the case of the $700 billion treasury bailout bill, I believe that in the haste to pass similar bailout for the "Big Three" automakers, Congress neglected to consider real alternatives that could spur the injection of private capital and liquidity into our financial markets.  Instead, Congress passed yet another bad bill which will saddle American taxpayers with debt for generations to come.

For that reason, this week I stood in support of a plan introduced by Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-TX), which would rescind the remaining $350 billion of Secretary Paulson’s bailout funds and convert it into a two month income and FICA tax holiday. The Gohmert alternative plan would serve as a good first step toward putting both money and power back where it belongs – in the hands of the American taxpayers.


It’s unquestionable that the auto industry is struggling, but there are few businesses that aren’t struggling given the current economic climate; and this government simply does not have the money or the Constitutional authority to continue passing these unprecedented, multi-billion dollar ‘bailout’ packages that will not bring the restructuring necessary to stabilize these failing companies and stimulate new productivity and growth.

The highway of history is littered with wreckage of socialist nations that thought they could manage wealth and productivity better than free markets.  When citizens are the ones to make decisions as to what will benefit them and where to invest their money, productivity usually follows.  In this case, the American people would be the ones to determine where to invest their money--which companies will succeed and which will fail.