Friday, September 26, 2008

COUNTRY FIRST: PLAYING POLITICS WITH A FINANCIAL CRISIS

In a disgusting partisan display yesterday, when Senate Democrats, Senate Republicans and President Bush had all gone on the record in the media as saying they were close to an accord on how the financial crisis could be managed, John McCain flew into town and injected himself and his campaign hopes into the mix, blowing up whatever agreements had been reached. Democrats were once again left on the hook when, while trying to fix a mess that was created by Republican policies, previous Republican control of the congress and a Republican administration, the Republicans first made it look like they would agree to a plan and then bailed out and pretended they never agreed in the first place. And their next step will surely be to label the Democrats as big spenders on the hook to Wall Street and make it look like they had the interests of the little guy at heart the whole time.

It became fairly obvious what the campaign was up to when Sarah Palin charged that Barack Obama was checking the political winds before taking action, but John McCain was supposedly taking the bull by the horn. The McCain campaign has set a pattern of transmitting the tact they they are about take by first accusing Obama of doing the exact same thing. So, McCain flew in to what was by most accounts a close-to-done deal to make it look like he was taking matters firmly in hand, so that he can take measure of the political winds. After polling showed the Americans had serious doubts and concerns about he bailout, he decided to pander to those fears (Hey, it worked before!). He carefully did not show support for any plan, or publicly propose his own plan. He poses for a smiling but fidgety photo op and the next thing we know, the whole thing suddenly blows up.

Since Democrats were begged not to disclose what happened when the cameras were turned off, the Republican party gets to spin the whole thing any way they want. And, since Obama had been summoned to witness this pathetic political theatre, the blame game will start today and he will somehow be in the thick of why things blew up. Look for the smears to be coming from Sarah Palin. If she deigns to make any kind of statement to the media today, watch what she says because it will tell you what new spin the campaign is trying to use to make it look like they are doing something and Obama is either not doing anything or is not doing the right thing.

From MSNBC this morning:

“..leading Democrats on Capitol Hill were shocked by the level of divisiveness that surfaced at Thursday’s extraordinary White House meeting, leaving six days of intensive efforts to agree on a bailout plan in tatters only hours after key congressional players of both parties had declared they were in accord on the outlines of a $700 billion bill.”


Then this morning Lindsey Graham sits on a morning show and pretends that he knew nothing about any agreement and found out only at lunchtime. He was busy meeting with Republican congress members. What the hell was he doing there if there was no deal yet? Let me guess; figuring out how to derail the whole thing so that they could use this financial crisis to McCain’s advantage somehow.

This also from MSNBC this morning:

Schumer said…’Before Sen. McCain made his announcement, we were making progress.’ Schumer was referring to McCain’s announcement earlier in the week that he was suspending his campaign to return to Washington for the negotiations on the financial industry crisis.

McCain met briefly Friday morning with House Republican Leader John Boehner.”


How strange that Boehner meets with McCain, while Lindsey Graham is busy meeting with Republican House Members then all of a sudden the whole plan is derailed. They pretend it was derailed by the House Republicans so that the Senate Republicans don’t appear to be going back on their word or as though they had anything to do with the shenanigans. And suddenly, McCain has his own ideas for how to solve the mess, which he supposedly put forth in the meeting at the White House, though NOBODY has reported on any details of that plan.

The new plan being advanced by Republicans this morning is RIFE with problems. I am no Wall Street insider, but anyone with a small amount of knowledge about the current problems there will tell you that part of the problem now is that those who are holding a lot of this bad debt are hesitant to step up and be known because their stock value and credit rating will drop immediately, to their possible ruin. This is part of what is freezing the market. The Republican plan put forth this morning would force these firms to show their hands, as it were, in the highest-stakes poker game in the world. That is no answer, but a recipe for disaster if you are really trying to constructively fix the problem. Yet, that does not seem to be the aim of the McCain campaign or the Republican party right now. Obviously, Party is coming before the needs of country.

This also from MSNBC this morning:

“The White House summit meeting had been called for the purpose of sealing the deal that Bush has argued is indispensable to stabilizing frenzied markets and reassuring the nervous American public. But it quickly revealed that Bush’s proposal had been suddenly sidetracked by fellow Republicans in the House, who refused to embrace a plan that appeared close to acceptance by the Senate and most House Democrats.

Paulson begged Democratic participants not to disclose how badly the meeting had gone, dropping to one knee in a teasing way to make his point according to witnesses.
And when Paulson hastily tried to revive talks in a nighttime meeting near the Senate chamber, the House’s top Republican refused to send a negotiator.”


Watch today for Sarah Palin to make the claim that it is the Democrats playing politics with the financial crisis. The spin will most likely be that she and John are the ones that are keeping the small-town people’s needs first, but the evil liberal Democrats are just trying to throw their money at Wall Street in a desperate bid for the White House. It is as predictable as it could possibly be.

Unfortunately, it is quite possible that an uninformed electorate will not see it coming and perhaps may even fall for it.

McCain’s new slogan should read:

JOHN MCCAIN: PARTY AND PRESIDENTIAL AMBITIONS FIRST LAST AND ALWAYS

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