John McCain, Phil Gramm and a failure of epic proportions

Ok, so John McCain happened to state that "The fundamentals of our economy are strong," even as Wall Street was tanking. A senior moment?

Not long ago McCain also confessed, "I was chairman of the [Senate] Commerce Committee that oversights every part of the economy." In light of the Wall Street revelations from the last couple weeks, what does that say about his oversight?

And there’s more. Writes Jim Hightower, “Tell me with whom you walk, and I’ll tell you who you are.” By that wisdom, John McCain is Phil Gramm, which is another way of saying he's Wall Street and Corporate America. Not only has McCain filled his campaign staff with big business lobbyists, but he’s also put such corporate-minded characters as Gramm by his side as top policy advisors, walking in step with them.

“You might remember Phil as the right-wing, Texas senator who chaired the senate banking committee. He rammed through a Wall Street deregulation bill that suddenly let powerhouse investment banks move into exotic financial schemes that were balanced precariously atop predatory subprime mortgages. Having been the magical congressional alchemist for this rapacious scheme of turning poor people’s home-ownership dreams into Wall Street gold, Gramm left the senate to go – where else? – to Wall Street! … Disastrous economic failure hasn’t daunted Gramm, who has been McCain’s national campaign co-chair and financial policy guru from the start. Guru Gramm is also pushing McCain to raise America’s retirement age, privatize Social Security, and further deregulate Wall Street. Did I mention that Gramm is in line to be Treasury Secretary if McCain wins?”

No question about it: The failure to notice the damage done by irresponsible deregulation was indeed an oversight of epic proportions.

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