Perfect framing for this attack of McCain’s cluelessness on the economy on this historic day: played on Fox News, with the tanking numbers from Wall Street on the visual beside Biden.
And, cluelessness isn’t even McCain’s worst factor on this issue. His go-to guy on economic issues is Phil Gramm, who, more than almost anyone, is responsible for what happened to Lehman Brothers.
If McCain wants to hold someone accountable for the failure in transparency and accountability that led to the current calamity, he should turn to his good friend and adviser, Phil Gramm.
As Mother Jones reported in June, eight years ago, Gramm, then a Republican senator chairing the Senate banking committee, slipped a 262-page bill into a gargantuan, must-pass spending measure. Gramm’s legislation, written with the help of financial industry lobbyists, essentially removed newfangled financial products called swaps from any regulation. Credit default swaps are basically insurance policies that cover the losses on investments, and they have been at the heart of the subprime meltdown because they have enabled large financial institutions to turn risky loans into risky securities that could be packaged and sold to other institutions.