I simply do not understand.
Lehman Brothers is gone. They are bankrupt. They filed for bankruptcy protection after a weekend of intense talks. Over 28,000 employees have lost their jobs.
As I understand it, and by no means am I an economist or any sort of economic expert (oh! I'm John McCain!), but as I understand bankruptcy when a business files for bankruptcy they get released from their debts. Their bills go unpaid, which hurts their creditors' businesses, I assume. And guess how much Lehman owes. $613 billion. You read that correctly.
But here's what I don't understand. Just 6 months ago, Lehman Brothers CEO Richard Fuld received a $22 million (that's $22,000,000) BONUS (that's on top of his regular salary, which probably allowed him to feed his family more than leftover Ramen Noodles) for 2007. As a matter of fact, in 2007, Lehman Brothers had 5% INCREASE in their net profit, bringing it to a record $4.2 billion (that's $4,200,000,000). Until June, the 158-year old Lehman Brothers had never reported a quarterly loss. (Source)
How is it possible for this company to go under so fast?
Why is it that these CEOs (and Lehman's Fuld isn't alone in this) collect these bonuses that rival the Gross National Product of some countries and then aren't held accountable for the choices they make that run their companies into the ground?
Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy. How nice for them. What about those 28,000+ employees? Can they file for bankruptcy just as easily, if they need to?
What about all the people who had Lehman Brothers stock as part of their 401(k)'s? As I write this, Lehman stock is down 95% and is worth 18 cents per share.
What kinds of ripple effects will be felt in the companies that won't get paid by Lehman?
Why do people still think voting for McCain, who admits he's not economically inclined (but he's got Greenspan's book, so I'm sure he'd be fine), continues to say the economy is fine, and voted for Bush's agenda over 9o% of the time, is a good idea? How will McCain's economic policies differ from Bush's?
How can McCain fix an economy he doesn't know or doesn't believe has problems?
And is anyone (except John & Cindy McCain) better off today than they were 8 years ago?