The Constitutional Right to Screw Up


Allen West


March 16, 2023

Greetings, everyone!

I am not a biologist nor did I study biology past high school, but I know what a woman is. I also am not an economist nor banker but I can tell when folks screw up and do dumb things. Such is the case with the economic, fiscal, and monetary policy of these United States of America. What we must all come to realize is that we all have a constitutional right to screw up. Yes, we possess an inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness, but when you’re traveling down that road and intentionally take a wrong turn . . . well, you do not have a right to pursue relief from those who are doing right.

Let’s take a little walk down faux pas lane.

It was the insidious policy of Jimmy Carter called the Community Investment Act which enabled a misconceived belief that everyone had a right to own a home. Therefore, the result was the forcing of financial institutions to make horrible, risky, loans to those who were unqualified for mortgages. As well, since the federal government injected itself into the private sector mortgage industry, the birth of the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) came forth. Then, all of a sudden, we had government mortgage entities such as Fannie Mae and later Freddie Mac. These mortgages began to look like good investments and therefore became mortgage backed securities that we passed on from financial institution to financial institution. Then the inevitable happened, these toxic assets exploded, bombed, because the time came when those unqualified lendees could not pay the lender. I remember it well because South Florida was ground zero for this meltdown which came to fruition in 2008.

So what did we do? We used taxpayer funds to bailout financial, well some, institutions. Yes, the government decided to pick the winners and losers. Government tried to rectify a problem which it had created and unconstitutionally violated the free market enterprise system not realizing that businesses have the right to screw up, especially when greed is involved.

Here we are now, fifteen years later in 2023 and facing the exact same type of situation. The Federal Reserve, Fed, has been playing around with this thing called quantitative easing for quite some time, manipulating interest rates and over printing money. They have set up “financial crack cocaine” and some in the private sector became addicted. The only thing that nullified this to some extent was the strength of our economy. Inflation in January 2021 was between 1.4-1.6 percent. Now, inflation sits at over 6 percent and it hit a high at 9.1 percent. As well, the Biden administration is spending trillions of dollars, more printing of money, and our debt has risen, since I left Congress, from $14 trillion to $32 trillion.

The Fed had artificially kept interest rates at or just above zero. In order to try and combat inflation, the Fed has raised interest rates, some to almost 4.5 percent. Now, here is where it gets dicey, some financial institutions, banks, bought assets at that low interest rate, and made some risky investments. There are those who will say this is all the result of rescinding bank regulations, nah, this is all a result of inflation, interest rate manipulation, and folks making dumb decisions in the short term. Matter of fact, the fella who authored the financial regulation act known as Dodd-Frank, Barney Frank, sat on the board of Signature Bank. So what was Barney doing during those board meetings? Maybe he was taking a nap.

Now we hear that depositors who do not have Federal Deposit Insurance coverage will get it?

Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank made risky decisions and for some reason had a several months gap in their Chief Risk Officer position. The point being, they do have the constitutional right to screw up, and should have to contend with the consequences thereof.

Oops, I can hear people say right now, “Doggone Colonel, that is harsh and you do not understand finance.” Yeah, I do. My response is simple: who will restore all those small businesses who were crushed by the government with their abjectly delusional COVID mandates and edicts? Ya know, like Michigan Gretchen Whitmer just said earlier this week, “Oh, my bad.”

On the battlefield, I had to make decisions that meant life or death for soldiers. If I made the wrong decision, there were consequences for them. That’s why I weighed every decision carefully knowing that we had a tough mission. Perhaps it is time that those in the private sector came to realize the impact and ramifications of their decisions. Who cares about leftist ideological agendas such as equity and DEI nonsense? It appears that Silicon Valley did.

Let that be a lesson to us all. When people are put in positions of responsibility because of outward physical characteristics, and not because of ability, talent, and merit, this is what you get. Therein lies my concern for our military with all this DEI foolishness infiltrating. Of course the Biden administration has made DEI and equity a primary focus, meaning more incompetent folks will hold key positions in our government. Kinda like a Supreme Court justice that could not define a woman, or an Federal Aviation Administrator whose qualification is that he slept at an Equity Inn.

The Constitution of the United States is a restraining document on the power of the federal government. It is not a document meant to give the government the power to fix the screw ups of people. Our rights, freedoms, and liberties can be used for positive, or negative. It is doggone time we realize — as the Drill Sergeants would say — there are some people that are just “stuck on stupid.”

The US Constitution, meaning the federal government, is not meant to fix stupid. We the People can fix stupid by not electing it and allowing it to be in key positions.

Steadfast and Loyal!



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