What Bailout Would Mean To Main Street

The Bush administration's proposed bailout of Wall Street, complete with its tentative price tag of $700 billion, is being debated in Washington, but one thing's for sure, observes CBS News correspondent Jeff Glor: It would have a direct impact on every American.

Right off the bat, notes Glor, the stock market-related swings in the value of 401(k) accounts provide one example. And, with the administration saying it needs the money NOW, and others saying, "Not so fast," there are other things you CAN count on.

The mess WILL cost you money.

"A bigger chunk, if you will, of our paycheck will go to the federal government, one way or another," says Global Insight Chief Economist Nariman Behravesh.

Also, there will be less risk-taking, by potential homeowners facing tighter lending rules, and by once freewheeling bankers facing new regulations.

And the big chill will settle in, according to Jill Schlesinger, executive vice president of StrategicPoint Investment Advisors, who says, "We took on a lot of risk. A lot of people lived beyond their means. A lot of people used their houses as ATM machines. A lot of people weren't saving enough for retirement. A lot of Wall Street bankers were taking on too much risk -- and it is unwinding."

In addition, Glor predicts, the blame game will continue. Frustration and anger need an outlet, and for many, it's hard not to feel both when they see how much, for example, the top guys on Wall Street were pulling down.

For instance, the CEO of Goldman Sachs getting $70.3 million, JP Morgan Chase's CEO, $27.8 million, and Merrill Lynch's, $24.3 million.

It's also a chance to look in the mirror, Schlesinger stresses: "It's time to really sit up and say, 'How am I going to control my financial life?' You cannot control what happens with Goldman Sachs or Morgan Stanley, or Fannie (Mae) and Freddie (Mac); you control your own life. It is time for you to grab the bull by the horns and say, 'Let me see how much money is coming in; let me see how much money I am spending; let me start to save. I am going to take responsibility for this, because no one else is going to do it for me."
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