If the left publicly opposes the bail out of the banking system, so that we are actually encouraging the collapse of the economy, the tens of thousands of redundancies that would entail, the poverty and homelessness, then we just prove that we are idiots who should never be listened to.
There are, I think, three main reasons why some on the the left oppose the bailouts.
1) It’s a hoax, the crisis is not real, Naomi Klein is right. It’s disaster capitalism, a mild problem exploited for political gain.
Response: After the collapse of the biggest mortgage players in the US, the biggest insurance company in the world, several major US investments banks, a major German mortgage lender, a Brit bank or two, and Iceland, only the most Black Helicopterish would say this is somehow a manufactured crisis.
2) It helps the rich only.
Response: Bank failures and credit market freeze ups affect everyone. Call me crazy, but I like going to the ATM, withdrawing $100, and having the machine give it to me.
3) A collapse would mean the end of capitalism and thus the birth of a glorious new day for socialism.
Response: This is the unfortunate subtext of why some lefties oppose the bailouts. They want the system to collapse, and are secretly cheering on this “crisis of capitalism.” That millions would suffer during such a collapse with no guarantee they would turn to socialism just shows how deluded and self-serving such lefties are. Inept too. Standing on the sidelines clucking about how Marx (or anarchist theory) predicted this would happen, instead of coming up with answers that will help those worst affected, is worse than useless.
The current crisis is a perfect organizing platform for the left. Everything they’ve been saying is right out in the open. Class. A tiny few grabbing the money. The bulk of the population getting screwed. But to organize on it, they need to leave the leftie enclaves and make themselves useful to those who are getting shafted. That’s how to build a mass movement. First, help them. Then deliver the message. Not the other way around.