The four horsemen retired. Old men, not up for a battle to alter the court, by constitutional amendment. How anyone could say that the court didn't pass socialist legislation after 36 has forgotten perhaps the absolute most absurd case of all time: Wickard. The Federal government telling a farmer he can't grow wheat on his own land for his own consumption, and, justifying it with the Commerce Clause.:barf: The court had to back peddle from that position in following decisions until 1995, when Lopez was passed.
As for the way to view such situations: I suggest another approach.
Congress can get away with anything, unless their is a Constitutional basis to sue: in other words, you need standing to sue, and invalidate such garbage.
Kali currently has a case going that may give teeth to Heller, and establish the level of scrutiny for 2nd amendment violating laws.
The question would be: What standard of scrutiny would a bail out be evaluated on?
A more fundamental approach would be to attack the congressional ability to tax.
Another would be to try and slow the government down, by limiting their meeting time, and pay. With a 9% approval rating, Congress is ripe for a huge constitutional pay cut, by Constitutional Amendment.
The sad part is the rich boys that play the market game profit in an unstable market. However, that is the EXACT reverse of what is good for America, which needs stability, and consistent, measured growth. If Bush had not bailed the companies out, or bad business folk, and instead put a trillion dollars into buying stocks, he would have accomplished a couple things. First, if the government owns stock, it's intrest is long term growth, and self-preservation, at all costs. Therefore, they are unlikely to create wild market swings by buying and selling a trillion or so dollars in stock. By putting so much money into the market, they would hugely diminish the ability of a few, ultra wealthy oil folks to manipulate the market for their own gain, by causing great swings, by putting money in, and pulling it out suddenly.