Nobody wants a panic. But we've got one.
Nobody from the
has gotten ahead of this problem. Nobody's in there with the list -- and the list is every firm with a big short position -- saying, "Guys, raise money or die, which is what happened to
Having Lehman die is obviously bad for its customers and lenders, but it will be sorted out.
But how can the Fed and Treasury not have been in there telling
what to do? How can there not be a plan? How could we let free-market capitalism still run wild? It obviously failed.
How can the Fed not cut rates
in this deflationary environment to make the deposits of banks worth more?
How can this guy Tim Geithner still be in charge, when everything he has done has been reactive and wrong? Do we just say, "Hey, them's the breaks"?
I put this one on the Federal Reserve. They had every chance to do more, and all they did as fret about Chinese-led inflation. Now the Chinese are so desperate they are doing a stimulus package, and all we have is a Fed that is worried about trying to be sure not that liquidity is available but that its various fancy facilities are in place, facilities that did nothing to help Lehman and did nothing to help
and are doing nothing to help AIG.
Without a rate cut and a Resolution Mortgage Trust, we will simply be facing the imminent demise of
. We aren't any more ready for that than we were for Lehman.
Why blame the government?
Because this stuff as so known and so obviously in the cards that you have to wonder whether perhaps the government has some marching orders from the president to do nothing until after every collapse -- nothing that is preventive.
This weekend, William Gruver -- a board member of
and a professor at Bucknell and a limited partner at
-- wrote a piece for the
New York Times
op-ed page about the need to relook at the endless deregulation that got us here, post-Glass Steagall. It talked about getting ahead of problems and making the system less complex. Good advice! After the next few weeks, there will only be a few survivors left.
Time to put in new rules: Don't wait for a new administration.
All of this was just too obvious. Neither the people who run the government nor the rules they have are right for a time of far more sophisticated interlinking instruments.
So, as almost everyone goes under, let's think of the new world and how to make it better.
Because at this pace, we will be in the new world in two or three weeks.
statement of disclosure is more than we are getting out of others. I find it helpful, and it should be examined for what survivor companies should be doing. ... Lots of high-multiple stocks are going down; they'll probably bounce later in the day.
At the time of publication, Cramer was long Goldman Sachs and GE.
Jim Cramer is a director and co-founder of TheStreet.com. He contributes daily market commentary for TheStreet.com's sites and serves as an adviser to the company's CEO. Outside contributing columnists for TheStreet.com and RealMoney.com, including Cramer, may, from time to time, write about stocks in which they have a position. In such cases, appropriate disclosure is made. To see his personal portfolio and find out what trades Cramer will make before he makes them, sign up for
Action Alerts PLUS. Watch Cramer on "Mad Money" weeknights on CNBC. To order Cramer's newest book -- "Jim Cramer's Stay Mad for Life: Get Rich, Stay Rich (Make Your Kids Even Richer),"
click here. Click
here to order "Mad Money: Watch TV, Get Rich," click
here to order "Real Money: Sane Investing in an Insane World," click
here to get "You Got Screwed!" and click
here for Cramer's autobiography, "Confessions of a Street Addict." While he cannot provide personalized investment advice or recommendations, he appreciates your feedback and invites you to send comments by
TheStreet.com has a revenue-sharing relationship with Amazon.com under which it receives a portion of the revenue from Amazon.com purchases by customers directed there from TheStreet.com.