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Financial Crisis Offers a Study in Leadership Styles

By Dan Balz
What kind of leadership do Americans want in their president?

Do they prefer the MBA-style of President Bush, who delegated management of the economic crisis to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson until he could not avoid a prime-time address to the nation, and then warned of dire consequences if the government does not act?

Do they prefer the brashness of John McCain, who on Tuesday talked as if he were prepared to scuttle a deal on a rescue package and then on Wednesday abruptly suspended his campaign and elbowed his way into the middle of things in an effort to galvanize negotiators to reach a solution?

Do they prefer the cool and reserved style of Barack Obama, who has monitored the crisis without interrupting his campaign, offered guidelines for what would be an acceptable deal, but who has seemed willing to let the process in Washington play out without direct intervention on his part?

What was clear from the start of the general election was the wide philosophical gulf between Obama and McCain. On virtually every issue, from Iraq to taxes to health care to energy, the differences in their views were stark. Voters could see that the outcome of the election would have a profound impact on the direction the next president would try to take the country.

But over the course of the past week, it's become equally clear that there is a significant difference between McCain and Obama in their leadership styles. Those differences have been on display over the past few days, especially during the chaotic and unexpected developments on Wednesday that produced Thursday's White House meeting, with McCain and Obama in attendance.

McCain, speaking Thursday morning at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York before returning to Washington, called for Democrats and Republicans to set aside politics and solve the crisis now. But both campaigns understand the very obvious political implications of the drama unfolding around the negotiating tables in the capital and along the campaign trail.

Voters are gaining new insights into how these two nominees might act if they were actually in the White House. The presidential debates are intended to provided side-by-side comparisons of the two candidates and presumably they will go forward, if not exactly on schedule. But the financial crisis provides a real-time laboratory for understanding the approaches of the two nominees.

Obama has been more measured and less passionate. McCain, since declaring the fundamentals of the economy strong in his first utterance, has been increasingly outspoken.

Obama has blamed the policies and philosophy of the Republicans for allowing the innate greed of Wall Street to run amok. McCain has blamed greed and corruption itself. McCain has seen the crisis in terms of good and evil -- well, mostly evil. Obama has looked at systemic causes. McCain asked for heads to roll. Obama argued that a change in administrations is the real solution.

Neither can be seen as an obstacle to a solution, but has either truly contributed to a one? Obama advisers argue that their candidate worked cooperatively with Paulson as the administration was preparing its rescue plan and with congressional Democrats in formulating objections to what the initial package included. That, they say, has helped push both sides closer to resolution.

McCain's actions have certainly appeared more impetuous. Was it necessary to declare his campaign in suspension and recommend a postponement of Friday's debate to get the attention of the president and the negotiators? With congressional Republicans moving to oppose the package, his advisers would argue that only a forceful intervention could produce a package acceptable enough to pass.

Obama's moves have drawn less direct criticism, though McCain and the Republicans have argued that he has been unwilling to commit himself at key points over the past 10 days -- a charge Obama's advisers reject.

Ironically, Obama and McCain are now very close together on the terms of a deal. In this case, policy differences appear minimal. Both want independent oversight of how the Treasury secretary would buy up and then resell devalued securities. Both want the taxpayers to share in any profits. Both want Wall Street executives not to profit excessively. Both say the rescue package should be a first step toward revamping the regulation of the financial industry.

But the two are now playing brinksmanship over the crisis, with McCain calling for a delay in Friday's presidential debate until there is agreement on a package and Obama arguing there is no need to stop all campaign activity. Speaking by satellite to the Clinton global forum after McCain, Obama said he would go to Washington Thursday to meet with McCain and others at the White House, but vowed to be in Oxford, Miss., on Friday night for the debate.

McCain has certainly taken the bigger risk, but Obama's course is not risk-free. These events are yet to play out, but the public will have plenty to judge these two nominees on by the time the weekend is over. These are not two politicians who would operate out of the Oval Office in similar ways. Philosophically, stylistically and temperamentally, Americans have a real choice in November.

By Web Politics Editor  |  September 25, 2008; 11:19 AM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama , Dan Balz's Take , John McCain  
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Comments

Well it looks like McCain is going to debate. So I suggest you liberals start crossing whatever you have, come Monday morning there will be a huge swing in the polls.

Obama needs to call in sick if he can there is no way he can debate with McCain

Posted by: mthomps71 | September 26, 2008 11:57 AM | Report abuse

I see the presidential debate and the financial crisis as two independent things. Though the financial crisis is of the at most importance, it can't be solved by McCain or Obama. There is a whole gang of senators, congressmen, and financial heavyweights in Washington who can do all the work needed to solve the problem without McCain's presence. In fact McCain is not even in any of the committee's that are involved in solving the crisis. How does McCain's canceling the debate change what is happening in Washington. The only reason McCain is doing it is to shine the spotlight on himself. He is no more than a McChicken. It is very clea that he is not able to articulate a position for what he wants out of this mess. So his position is wait for another week, and talk about it only after the bill has passed. That is ridiculous.

Posted by: JohnMcCormick | September 26, 2008 12:02 AM | Report abuse

And too, why did Obama run with his tail between his legs when McCain offered to debate him in 10 town hall meetings a month or so ago.

Because Obama is a fraud. With friends like Hastings who today said about Palin:
From abcnews.com:
"If Sarah Palin isn’t enough of a reason for you to get over whatever your problem is with Barack Obama, then you damn well had better pay attention," said Hastings. "Anybody toting guns and stripping moose don’t care too much about what they do with Jews and blacks. So, you just think this through."

"Hastings, who is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, made his comments in Washington, D.C., while participating in a panel discussion sponsored by the National Jewish Democratic Council."

Black leaders like Hastings, Obama and Wright have a lot of class.

Posted by: zqll1 | September 25, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

From the NY Times:
"September 11, 2003
New Agency Proposed to Oversee Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae
By STEPHEN LABATON
The Bush administration today recommended the most significant regulatory overhaul in the housing finance industry since the savings and loan crisis a decade ago."
"Under the plan, disclosed at a Congressional hearing today, a new agency would be created within the Treasury Department to assume supervision of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored companies that are the two largest players in the mortgage lending industry.

And:

"Significant details must still be worked out before Congress can approve a bill. Among the groups denouncing the proposal today were the National Association of Home Builders and Congressional Democrats who fear that tighter regulation of the companies could sharply reduce their commitment to financing low-income and affordable housing.

''These two entities -- Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac -- are not facing any kind of financial crisis,'' said Representative Barney Frank of Massachusetts, the ranking Democrat on the Financial Services Committee. ''The more people exaggerate these problems, the more pressure there is on these companies, the less we will see in terms of affordable housing.''

Representative Melvin L. Watt, Democrat of North Carolina, agreed."

It's the Congressional Democrats who are responsible for today's problems.

Also, Obama says he does not have to disengage from campaigning to attend to the financial crisis since he says a President should be able to handle more than one issue at a time.
Yeah, right Obama! This coming from a man who voted "present" several hundred times on issues he failed to understand or address.

Posted by: zqll1 | September 25, 2008 9:12 PM | Report abuse

John McCain has shown himself to be unstable, reckless, self-serving, risky, and down right SCARY.

John McCain is out of control.


Can we PLEASE keep this maniacal man out of the whitehouse?

After seeing his behavior, i don't think he is level-headed enough to even keep his job in the senate.

Posted by: julieds | September 25, 2008 8:39 PM | Report abuse

McCain Runs And Hides From His Past:

John McCain running from the debate with Barack Obama is unacceptable, and COWARDICE! There are over 350 members of congress to deal with the US economic collapse. And even more capital hill aids, advisers, and experts to deal with the economic catastrophe created by the corrupt Bush McCain presidency and the past republican controlled congress.

Every American, and TRUE! patriot needs to demand that John McCain debate Barack Obama and tell the American people how he is going to fix this economic catastrophe that he (John McCain), Bush, and the past Republican controlled congress created.

Contact the news media. Your local papers. And demand that they hold John McCain accountable to debate Barack Obama. Contact all your friends and ask them to do the same. Call your senators, and congressmen and tell them that you expect "Let Them Eat Cake" John McCain to debate Barack Obama on this economic catastrophe that John McCain and "Let Them Eat Cake" BUSH! created.

It's time to get ANGRY! America. Tell John McCain you want answers, and you want those answers NOW!

He can run. But he cant hide anymore.

What ever congress does to try and fix our stunning economic catastrophe needs to be done very carefully. Congress needs to take their time, and be sure of what they are doing. Whatever is done needs to be sharply focused at helping, and protecting the best interest of the ordinary Americans. In particular the vast American middle class. 700 billion dollars is a lot of the peoples money to spend to bail out a bunch of corrupt Bush loan sharks.

My fellow human beings, just as I warned you ahead of this catastrophic economic meltdown, I must now warn you that what is a head has the potential to be even more catastrophic than what we are going through now. The worlds geopolitical landscape has been booby trapped by the Bush McCain administration and their republican allies in congress. These booby traps are poised to spring at any time.

Fortunately the Worlds Nations have been blest with many excellent leaders (except the US) who have been careful, wise, strong, and self-restrained in dealing with the provocations, and antagonism's of the Bush, McCain administration.

Barack Obama and the democrats are your best hope now. Tell your family, friends, and everyone you know to support them as best you can, and vote for them like your life, and the lives of your loved ones depends on it. Because it does. You will not survive 4 more years of Bush McCain.

JACK SMITH - WORKING CLASS...

Posted by: JackSmith1 | September 25, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Leadership style? More like grandstanding style. John McCain put his own campaign ahead of bipartisan efforts well under way to reach consensus on this crisis. He pulled this stunt of "suspending" his campaign (24 hours later) while apparently being so far out of the loop he had no idea the parties were close to agreement. Perhaps he should go to Sarah Palin's witch doctor friend for a little guidance ... watch this for a laugh:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gN7hJDS26rI&feature=email

Posted by: Omyobama | September 25, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

Before Bush's phone call, as McCain put everything on hold to help fix our countries economic fallout, Obama stood back and made the statement "If I can be helpful, then I am prepared to be anywhere, any time". I guess he was too busy cramming in Clearwater for his big midterm. Cue the music-


CHORUS
And no wind (no wind)
And no rain (no rain)
Or winter’s cold
Can stop me, baby (oh baby)
‘Cause if you’re ever in trouble
I’ll be there on the double
Just send for me, baby
Oh baby....

Country first or ME first ???

Posted by: thecannula | September 25, 2008 6:53 PM | Report abuse

"Unsevered Ties?

Regulatory filings indicate that McCain campaign chief Rick Davis remains an officer with his lobbying firm."

"Rick Davis, John McCain's campaign manager, has remained the treasurer and a corporate director of his lobbying firm this year, despite repeated statements by campaign officials that he had ended his relationship with the firm in 2006, according to corporate records."

http://www.newsweek.com/id/160713/output/printhttp://www.newsweek.com/id/160713/output/print

Posted by: nowanna3 | September 25, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

I'm an Independent. I used to support McCain back in 2000.

I'm voting for Obama. McCain's just not the same person he used to be. His 'maverick character' has turned into some absurd, shoot-from-the-hip method.

We need leaders who are informed and can make careful, educated decisions. Not ones who engage in fear and guesswork.

Posted by: wolfi101 | September 25, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

Republilooser KMichaels writes:

“The Gramm-Leach bill passed with overwhelming bipartisan support”

From Wiki:

“The bills were introduced in the Senate by Phil Gramm (R-TX) and in the House of Representatives by James Leach (R-IA). The bills were passed by a 54-44 vote largely along party lines with Republican support in the Senate[1] and by a 343-86 vote in the House of Representatives[2].”

Introduced by deregulation happy republicans and passed largely on party lines…Hardly “overwhelming” bipartisan support.


“Hell, we have states that still allow 300 percent interest to be paid by cheap companies lending to desperate people. And guess what? It happens in dem dominated areas all the time.”

“Dems were totally against further Fannie and Freddie regulations. Obama was conspicuouslly ABSENT from the record and McCain was the one pushing the hardest for the regulation.”

Keep blaming the dems, I am an independent. The dems give me enough reasons why I’m not affiliated with the party. But I understand it is really hard to come up with your own ideas on the subject when you have been trained to constantly spit out conservative rhetoric like a broken record. Not to mention ignoring your own failed policies and pointing the finger at everyone but yourself.

If I am looking to secure a home loan I am certainly not going to waste time trying to get it from my state rep. But everything is the dem’s fault isn’t it? Not a reason that isn’t political such as commission driven loan brokers that have the final say on who they sell a home loan to. So by your logic we are really in this mess because we can’t be trusted to police ourselves. I guess we need someone to come in and dictate to us how to live our lives. Smells of big government to me. I thought McSame/Failin were against that?


"Rick Davis is on record of cutting any times with any company lobbying for Fannie and Freddie. He is on record as having done so over two years ago."

Considering neither one of us is an insider at the NYT or McCantMultiTask's campaign the truth is most likely somewhere in between the NYT story and McChicken's press release. Regardless of where the truth lies, money was received by Rick Davis which A.) makes me not a liar and B.) creates a much stronger link to Fanny/Freddie than McHypocrite's attention seeking claim (and yours) that Obama was in Fannie/Freddie's pockets. I am aware that the Times is a biased source of information and should be taken with a grain of salt. If you (once again) pulled your head out you will learn that McLiar does a bit more then the bending the truth himself. His whole campaign strategy is based on half truths and the occasional circus sideshow. No substance, just sleight of hand and a bunch of smoke and mirrors. Keep drinking that koolaide buddy, looks like there is plenty of it to go around. In fact I’ll buy you a round myself.

Posted by: 1qaz2wsx1 | September 25, 2008 5:40 PM | Report abuse

I'm an independent, and I will not vote this election, but I think Obama has the better insight into the problem.

Hey! I can do this, too!

Posted by: neon_bunny | September 25, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry, didn't John McCain start all this with his stunning announcement of suspending his campaign and ducking the debate?

Also I haven't heard where he has confirmed attending the debate, or that the VP debate is going on as planned.

So far all I have seen is that it was a photo op at the White House.


"What does everyone have to say now? Looks like McCain will be at the debates so you all ran your mouths for nothing as usual

Posted by: mthomps71 | September 25, 2008 4:42 PM"

Posted by: nowanna3 | September 25, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

McCain Avoiding The Debate?


McCain has pulled this stunt before....


With his poll numbers tanking, John McCain wants to pull out of the presidential debate. No, I'm not talking about tomorrow's debate with Barack Obama:


"With new polls showing his campaign dead in the water among California Republicans, Arizona Sen. John McCain has pulled out of a long-scheduled debate with Texas Gov. George Bush, set for Thursday in Los Angeles."

"McCain campaign officials tried desperately yesterday to put the best face on their withdrawal, even as a new Field Poll showed Bush far ahead among likely Republican voters in the winner-take-all race for the state's 162 GOP delegates."

"The bait and switch on the debate left the Arizona senator -- whose favorite campaign line is "I'll always tell you the truth'' -- wide open to blistering criticism from his rivals."

"Clearly, this is more double-talk from the McCain campaign,'' said Alixe Mattingly, a spokeswoman for Bush. "Pulling out of this debate at the last minute is an indication that they're pulling out of California, where McCain's antagonistic message clearly isn't working.''

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2000/02/28/MN62687.DTL&hw=mccain+opinsky&sn=001&sc=1000
.


And clearly, McCain has a habit of trying to "cut and run" when things aren't going his way.

Posted by: DrainYou | September 25, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Plus McCain will make him look like a fool at the debates he can't debate with McCain on any level

Posted by: mthomps71 | September 25, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

What does everyone have to say now? Looks like McCain will be at the debates so you all ran your mouths for nothing as usual

Posted by: mthomps71 | September 25, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

John Mc Cain is an expert on these type of financial crises... he was more than imtimately involved with the last big real estate boondoggle leading to bank failure and corporate socialism bail-out... as an Ol' Keating Five alum he probably has all kinds of interesting insight.

Posted by: fearirony2060 | September 25, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

McSame runs around flailing like chicken little, the sky is falling, the sky is falling, and then acts like he is the only one who can save us. What a doddering, arrogant moron. I'm way behind in the polls. Quick, find me a woman to put on the ticket! Wall Street is crumbling!Quick, I'm off to Washington. Cancel the debate! I've got to save the economy.
When you run from one crisis to the next, changing your position from one day to the next, it does not evoke a lot of confidence. He is a sad old man. A shadow of his former self. A hypocrit. Proud and clueless.

Posted by: COLEBRACKETT | September 25, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Funny how most of the attacks on Obama on this blog are hollow or "urban legends" made up by the feeble minded that follow the republicans like sheep to a slaughter. How can you continue to support a regime, the GOP, that his CONSTANTLY ignored the will of the people and their welfare? I use to hear people say all the republicans care about are the wealthy throughout my life and wrote it off as political bias. I have even voted republican more times than democrat in general elections. But now, I agree with President Clinton when he said at the democratic national convention that we have oftened wondered what it would be like to have the republicans control the congress and the white house at the same time. Now we see. The wealthiest in this nation incomes grew, during a sluggish economy, while the middle class incomes decreased and the poor got even poorer. The ratio of CEO salaries to ordinary workers is 400 to 1, the highest in the free world, a ratio that ALSO grew during a sluggish economy.

Now, I don't believe in taking from the rich becasue they have it to take. Heck, I hope to be one of the rich one day, nothing wrong with that. But is the system fair? Not too sure and when you consider that G.W. and Dick lied to us about invading Iraq, it really makes you wonder. John McCain says he has agreed with the President 90% of the time, his own words, but also says he is a maverick? He just sounds like another lying republican to me. And did you see and listen to the interviews Sarah Palin did with Katie Couric? You have to be examined by a medical professional to even consider voting this woman into the white house.

Posted by: ajackson3 | September 25, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

MORE STUNNING NEWS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Take a closer look at your list McCain is on there.

McCain, John S AZ R $21,550 $0 $21,550

http://www.opensecrets.org/news/2008/09/update-fannie-mae-and-freddie.html

Posted by: nowanna3 | September 25, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Balz is once again shilling for Obama. No surprise. The Wash Post shills for Obama each and every day without fail. The entire media has been promoting Obama 24/7 for over a year and half. Nothing fair about this 2008 campaign debacle. Hillary Clinton was villified 24/7 in ALL media for a year and half. The Wash Post was no exception. My Democratic party has foolishly nominated the wrong candidate(s). Hillary could win this election in a walk. It's time to hold the media, the DNC and Obama accountable for the rampant sexism, racism, classism, voter disenfranchisement and subversion of democracy in this 2008 campaign debacle. Put your country first and party second and vote for McCain 08 and Hillary 2012!****************************************************************Presidential candidate Sen. John McCain has demonstrated what it means to be a leader and a patriot. Sen. Obama is neither.


******************************************

STUNNING NEWS!!!!!!!!!!!!!


According to the website OpenSecrets.org, Senator Barack Obama is the 2nd HIGHEST recipient of campaign contributions from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac!! In the Senate ONLY 3 YEARS and ALREADY the 2nd HIGHEST recipient?? Stunning!! Sen. Christopher Dodd is 1st! Wow, the audacity of Dodd and Obama know NO bounds. NOTICE, Sen. John McCain is NOT on the list. I repeat, Sen. John McCain is NOT on the list. Sen. McCain has been in Congress the entire time the list was compiled and is NOT on the list. Well done, Sen. McCain. My Democratic Party should be ashamed. This Democrat will proudly support John McCain for President. McCain is a true leader and patriot. Obama is neither.

The following list of the top ten recipients from Open Secrets.org website. Stunning.

"All Recipients of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Campaign Contributions, 1989-2008"

Name Office State Party Grand Total Total from
PACs Total from
Individuals
Dodd, Christopher J S CT D $165,400 $48,500 $116,900
Obama, Barack S IL D $126,349 $6,000 $120,349
Kerry, John S MA D $111,000R $103,300 $70,500 $32,800
Blunt, Roy H MO R $96,950 $78,500 $18,450
Kanjorski, Paul E H PA D $96,000 $57,500 $38,500
Bond, Christopher S 'Kit' S MO R $95,400 $64,000 $31,400
Shelby, Richard C S AL R $80,000 $23,000 $57,000
Reed, Jack ...


visit

RealDemocratsUSA.org


Taking back our party, one neighborhood at a time


Join us!!

Posted by: TAH1 | September 25, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

I have said from the beginning that my preference for Sen. Obama is based upon his decision-making methodology.

Studied, thoughtful and yet still open to learning from others by willing to listen to all sides is something that we've been sadly lacking in the Oval these last 7+ years!

Going to war in Iraq (and all the tragedies since) were endemic to Bush's style.

John McCain - a la Bush - does everything by the seat of his pants (just like a fighter pilot) and even says he's proud of it (in his book, "Worth the Fighting For").

McCain says he's willing to take the consequences if he's wrong. Unfortunately, if he becomes president, we'll ALL suffer the consequences.

America simply cannot afford another 4+ years of shooting from the lip!

Obama/Biden '08

Posted by: miraclestudies | September 25, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Obama has shown what he always has, that he will sit back and not commit, waiting to see which way the wind blows.

---------------------------

The only thing blowing is the hot air from your mouth. Talk sensibly and people will listen.

Posted by: wpost4112 | September 25, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

I'm an independent, and I will not vote this election, but I think McCain has the better insight into the problem. He sees it for what it is...endemic and systemic corruption, all the way from Main Street to Wall Street.

----------------

LOL. Yeah. You're about as independent as Tom DeLay.

Posted by: wpost4112 | September 25, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Obama has shown what he always has, that he will sit back and not commit, waiting to see which way the wind blows. That way he can take a position and not be accused of changing. I was always taught to stand up for what you believe, not just vote present, which ensures you don't lose friends on both sides. He made suggestions and somewhat of a plan when he was forced to. If there is an attack, will he wait to see which side is winning, or transfer that 3 AM call to Joe Biden?

Posted by: micardika | September 25, 2008 2:59 PM

You are an example of someone who presents an emotional argument to not vote for Obama and ignore the financial problem this country and you in particular will face and if we listen to you we will have placed in power a man who lacks the advice of great economic thinkers in favor of someone who is advised by lobbyists.

If he institutes his policies it will be at the expense of your economic well being.

Posted by: Gator-ron | September 25, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Stand by for a "Mission Accomplished" news conference by McCain.

Odd that the tentative agreement was almost reached before McCain arrived. I guess just the specter of his return was enough when he has voted in the Senate since April.

Posted by: nowanna3 | September 25, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

KMichaels :

This crisis came about because there were very low interest rates created by the Fed for an extended period of time and Bush put more money into the hands of investors though his tax cuts giving them more money that they needed to invest at a time when on an economic basis the housing market should have been peaking.

A system existed in which too much money was chasing too few potential borrowers and the system was rigged so that creating a mortgage was rewarded and by securitizing it the lending institution escaped responsibility for the loan and neither the SEC or the Fed paid attention. Were it not for the fiasco of 2005 and 2006 this problem would not be of this magnitude. If there was not a Fed Chairman who eschewed regulation and a president who did the same this might never have happened.

As far as I am concerned Mr Greenspan is the principle actor in this problem but the environment that was created by the Gramm bill and the belittling of Democrats for wanting regulation when it was needed created a situation where many of the people who are loosing their homes now would have voted against those trying to protect them.

Those whose jobs are lost, who are in danger of loosing them or live in communities which are suffering the effects of an economy that never generated the jobs and the high paying jobs that were anywhere near the magnitude of corporate profits.

This I think is the basis of this crisis. The finger pointing at McCain and Obama is nonsense. McCain is responsible for his own poor judgement in succumbing to this environment but attacking him for this crisis is silly. Lobbyists are a problem and McCain's campaign is bloated with them.

Though you are very impressed with your own intelligence and not with those who vote for Obama. You also highly over rate youself because the problem which started out as a subprime mortgage problem has become more complex and other types of loans will be under attack at some point if they are not already. I believe if the American people understood the severity of this crisis they would ignore whatever issue other than the economy that disturbs them and vote in their own self-interest for Obama.

A voter who uses reason (the issues) rather than emotion (character) will be either be independently wealthy with assets outside the US that are substantial or assessed incorectly his financial soundness.

Posted by: Gator-ron | September 25, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

INFO42:
I saw that poll you are talking about! And then I saw another poll that has them tied, and then I saw yet another poll that has Obama +3.2, so in conclusion, the polls are never a clear and pratical way to gauge who is 'winning'.

Posted by: kikgirl | September 25, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

McCain's actions amount to a lot of noise, a lot of flailing and very little contributed to actually solving any problems. Besides the fact that he's now calling for the very opposite to his own record on regulation and oversight. What's worse is that someone who has publicly confessed to understanding very little about the economy, seems to want to stick his finger in the mix just to "show" that he's what? There, alive, has a pulse? It's not presidential that's for sure. The problem is not that Obama has done anything so great or made all that much of a contribution on this situation. The problem is that McCain has simply demonstrated that he would run the country in unpredictable and potentially reckless ways simply to be part of the action and make waves.

Posted by: brain2020 | September 25, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

The crisis was going on last week, Monday, Tuesday, If McCain were sooooo concerned, why not go to Washington when the crisis was first announced? His first response was "the foundamentals of our economy is sound." It took him almost a week to dtermine the the foundamentals were not sound? He needed a boost and pulled a political stunt and is considered teh "can do guy." Please, his campaign won't let him make a move without their approval. Some Maverick. Give me someone who can walk and chew bubble gum at the same time. The presidency will be fraught with crisis you can't put one on hold to attend to the other. Get real.

Posted by: republicrat | September 25, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Obama has shown what he always has, that he will sit back and not commit, waiting to see which way the wind blows. That way he can take a position and not be accused of changing. I was always taught to stand up for what you believe, not just vote present, which ensures you don't lose friends on both sides. He made suggestions and somewhat of a plan when he was forced to. If there is an attack, will he wait to see which side is winning, or transfer that 3 AM call to Joe Biden?

Posted by: micardika | September 25, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

I'm an independent, and I will not vote this election, but I think McCain has the better insight into the problem. He sees it for what it is...endemic and systemic corruption, all the way from Main Street to Wall Street. After all, it was not Wall Street who made the bad loans...these were made at community banks, by the same corrupt middle class people, to the same corrupt middle class people, who are now blaming Wall Street. Wall Street only took the corruption and greed to another level. In any event, anyone who thinks the next President is going to change anything is naive beyond words. What we have in America today is a cultural problem...rampant corruption, fed by social vanity (I believe they call it keeping up with the Jones) and growing social inequity...this is what is going to drive this country to third-world status.

Posted by: JCMofDC | September 25, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

JRM2 drools, screams, insists: "

"Man you REALLY ARE AN IDIOT, it has been PROVEN that Rick Davis was being paid up until August by Fannie and Freddie. But let's not let THE FACTS get in the way."

Actually, it was not proven. Your idiotic claim is simply a repeat of a false NYT claim. It is the NYT claim that has proven to be false.

But go ahead, blowhard, keep feeding off the bottom like good little idiots. Let WaPo and NYT feed you the lies then you can parrot them back for a cracker.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Kmicheals:

"If you think that your self-righteous recreation of history is going to fly then you are living in the fantasy you create."

Specifically all my points on this subject are demonstrably ture.

"At the time Gramm was given credit for being the major force behind that bill."

I never said otherwise. Yes, his name is on it afterall. But that does not change the facts that it was supported in the house 80% to 20%. That means a crapload of dems alsoo supported it.

Of course, the key point that you idiot Obamites are missing is that that particular bill had nothing to do with subprime loans, duh.

You got that through your thick skulls? The Gramm-Leach bill did not enable subprime loans.

Subprime loans have been legal in the USA since our country began.

Fannie and Freddie did not need the Gramm bill to get into subprime loans, you MORONS. Get it yet? Subprime loans is the cause of the problem.

I know that you morons dont do your own research. I attribute that to your gross stupidity and or laziness, or maybe you dont give a damn about the truth.

But thankfully others are able to dig for themselves and see the real connection.

SUBPRIME LOANS is the problem and DEMS VOTED IN FAVOR OF LETTING MORE SUBPRIME LOANS HAPPEN.

That is that. Now go back to school.

As to Dan Balzless showing both sides, right. Tell us another lie.

So when he says reckless McCain compared to cool Obama he is not choosing a side?

Balz is a completely in the bag Obama lapdogger. If you follow him, you would know this by now.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse


Yes, well, Illinois also deserves 2 Senators, but we've only had one the last couple of years.

Showing up and doing your job isn't such a bad idea.

If you were so anxious for people to know your views, you would have agreed to the ten weekly town halls McCain asked for. Phony nothingness.

Posted by: Chicago1 | September 25, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

So now that they have come to an agreement with the bailout, I guess McCain has no reason to go to Washington eh?

Posted by: XanderB | September 25, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

McCain's style will create crises were none exist. Obama's style will overt crises where one looms.


Posted by: david J | September 25, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

david J:
I agree with you (or what I think you meant to write. where/were, overt/avert??

I would recommend a dictionary (friendly tip!)

Posted by: yard80197 | September 25, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

"
Rick Davis is on record of cutting any times with any company lobbying for Fannie and Freddie. He is on record as having done so over two years ago."

Man you REALLY ARE AN IDIOT, it has been PROVEN that Rick Davis was being paid up until August by Fannie and Freddie. But let's not let THE FACTS get in the way.

At least your answer was better than Sarah Palin's "moose in the headlights" answer on Katie Couric on the same topic.

Repukes=Lying, liars who lie about lying.

Posted by: JRM2 | September 25, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Amazingly Zogby has McCain up by 2. What's more amazing is that he's +5 since pulling that stunt. Maybe liberals are right to believe Americans are stupid.

Still, if it stops Comrade Obama, I ain't gonna complain.

Posted by: info42 | September 25, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

this went to every Mc Cain state campaign center, Forbes , WSJ, and every elected official in the swing state of Pennsylvania in an open "To" email.

It is in "the public domain".

Congressional Democrat Opposition to 2003 & 2005 Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac Reforms Contributed Greatly to Current US Financial Crisis

http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB122230672551773977-lMyQjAxMDI4MjIyNTMyMDU2Wj.html

Before any deal is cut to appropriate $700 billion to bailout radioactive GNMA speed pools and failed Goldman Sachs derivatives (swaps), Gorelick, Mozilo , Mudd ,Raines and Johnson should be taken into federal custody as a demonstration of 'good faith dealing' to the American people.

"EVIDENCE OVERWHELMINGLY SHOWS THAT DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSIONAL LEADERS AND BARACK OBAMA OPPOSED, DURING 2003 and 2005, MUCH-NEEDED STRUCTURAL REFORMS TO FANNIE MAE & FREDDIE MAC THAT WOULD HAVE MITIGATED THE RISKS POSED TO THE ENTIRE U.S. FINANCIAL SYSTEM. OBAMA et. al. OPPOSED SUCH CHANGES BECAUSE THEY WOULD DIMINISH THE CAPACITY OF THESE INSTITUTIONS TO PROVIDE HIGH-RISK 'AFFIRMATIVE ACTION' MORTGAGES TO LOW & MODERATE INCOME EARNERS WHO COULD ILL-AFFORD THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE. THESE ARE NOT THE 'INNOCENT HOMEOWNERS FACING FORECLOSURE' OF WHICH OBAMA SPEAKS."

http://itssdpathologicalcommunalism.blogspot.com/2008/09/itssd-democrats-in-congress-opposed.html

Sent: Monday, September 22, 2008 11:41 PM
Subject: Re: "Who is whalen?"


Hope you all saw Newt Gingrich "On The Record With Greta Van Susteren on FOXNews"...he advises Bush; "Get a better plan, get other advisors" before entering into a $700 billion cram down scam.

R. Christopher Whalen for Secretary of the Treasury replacing Paulson ..right now... to present said plan.

Pennsylvania and Sen.John Mc Cain {F.H. E. Regulatory Reform Act of 2005, S. 190 } can partner to make this demand.

http://www.foxnews.com/ontherecord/


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


"Yet the plan also carries big risks. Christopher Whalen, managing director of Institutional Risk Analytics, says the government ultimately will have to spend as much as $1.4 trillion buying sour mortgage assets, depending on how many foreign banks participate. Its ability to borrow all that money is not a given, he says.

Whalen predicts the bailout will set off economic upheaval. The government will have to borrow so much that it will drive up interest rates, weaken the dollar and worsen inflation.

"I think you can see interest rates in the double digits," he says. "Congress thinks they can borrow forever. The dollar is going to fall. Nobody is going to want to hold U.S. debt."

Whalen says, "I don't think we need to rescue Wall Street. Wall Street is curing itself quite nicely. If we don't allow our people to feel pain, it's not going to inoculate them" against future crises.

Some economists warn that the long-term costs to the USA will loom even larger, as the bailouts hurt future federal spending for health care, Social Security and education.

"They're just blowing the bank wide open right here," says Jagadeesh Gokhale, senior fellow at the Cato Institute. "We still really don't know what the exposure may be."

Posted by: rtfanning | September 25, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Texan2007 : I suggest you actually look at his record. Obama has done more for the common person than McCain has done in his entire life. Obama has taken pounding after pounding and is still standing tall and acting Presidential while McCain appears to have gone on some prescription medication bender.

You obviously want to just recycle the trash thrown at you from FOX news.

Posted by: JRM2 | September 25, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Congressional Democrat Opposition to 2003 & 2005 Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac Reforms Contributed Greatly to Current US Financial Crisis
this went to every Mc Cain state campaign center, Forbes , WSJ, and every elected official in the swing state of Pennsylvania in an open "To" email.

It is in "the public domain".

Congressional Democrat Opposition to 2003 & 2005 Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac Reforms Contributed Greatly to Current US Financial Crisis

http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB122230672551773977-lMyQjAxMDI4MjIyNTMyMDU2Wj.html

Before any deal is cut to appropriate $700 billion to bailout radioactive GNMA speed pools and failed Goldman Sachs derivatives (swaps), Gorelick, Mozilo , Mudd ,Raines and Johnson should be taken into federal custody as a demonstration of 'good faith dealing' to the American people.

"EVIDENCE OVERWHELMINGLY SHOWS THAT DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSIONAL LEADERS AND BARACK OBAMA OPPOSED, DURING 2003 and 2005, MUCH-NEEDED STRUCTURAL REFORMS TO FANNIE MAE & FREDDIE MAC THAT WOULD HAVE MITIGATED THE RISKS POSED TO THE ENTIRE U.S. FINANCIAL SYSTEM. OBAMA et. al. OPPOSED SUCH CHANGES BECAUSE THEY WOULD DIMINISH THE CAPACITY OF THESE INSTITUTIONS TO PROVIDE HIGH-RISK 'AFFIRMATIVE ACTION' MORTGAGES TO LOW & MODERATE INCOME EARNERS WHO COULD ILL-AFFORD THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE. THESE ARE NOT THE 'INNOCENT HOMEOWNERS FACING FORECLOSURE' OF WHICH OBAMA SPEAKS."

http://itssdpathologicalcommunalism.blogspot.com/2008/09/itssd-democrats-in-congress-opposed.html

Sent: Monday, September 22, 2008 11:41 PM
Subject: Re: "Who is whalen?"


Hope you all saw Newt Gingrich "On The Record With Greta Van Susteren on FOXNews"...he advises Bush; "Get a better plan, get other advisors" before entering into a $700 billion cram down scam.

R. Christopher Whalen for Secretary of the Treasury replacing Paulson ..right now... to present said plan.

Pennsylvania and Sen.John Mc Cain {F.H. E. Regulatory Reform Act of 2005, S. 190 } can partner to make this demand.

http://www.foxnews.com/ontherecord/


"Yet the plan also carries big risks. Christopher Whalen, managing director of Institutional Risk Analytics, says the government ultimately will have to spend as much as $1.4 trillion buying sour mortgage assets, depending on how many foreign banks participate. Its ability to borrow all that money is not a given, he says.

Whalen predicts the bailout will set off economic upheaval. The government will have to borrow so much that it will drive up interest rates, weaken the dollar and worsen inflation.

"I think you can see interest rates in the double digits," he says. "Congress thinks they can borrow forever. The dollar is going to fall. Nobody is going to want to hold U.S. debt."

Whalen says, "I don't think we need to rescue Wall Street. Wall Street is curing itself quite nicely. If we don't allow our people to feel pain, it's not going to inoculate them" against future crises.

Some economists warn that the long-term costs to the USA will loom even larger, as the bailouts hurt future federal spending for health care, Social Security and education.

"They're just blowing the bank wide open right here," says Jagadeesh Gokhale, senior fellow at the Cato Institute. "We still really don't know what the exposure may be."

Posted by: rtfanning | September 25, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Another idiot lying Obama lapdogger writes:

"Wasn't somebody earlier on this post saying Obama has his head in the sand...Pull your own head out. Have you purposefully been ignoring the news about Rick Davis?"

Rick Davis is on record of cutting any times with any company lobbying for Fannie and Freddie. He is on record as having done so over two years ago.

However, dimwits, the Obama has two ex CEOs from Fannie consulting him. He also has lots of other Fannie people on his staff.

And worst of all, when it came to voting, it was 97% of the democrats that were against more regulation on Fannie and Freddie.

Bottom line, you can eat up the lies at NYT like you were a bottom feeder but that does not change how people actually voted.

Dems were totally against further Fannie and Freddie regulations. Obama was conspicuouslly ABSENT from the record and McCain was the one pushing the hardest for the regulation.

Now that the subprime facts are coming out, idiot dems are hoping that their lapdogs like Dan Balzless will come to their rescue and provide some more of his idiotic headfakes and yellow journalism.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Kmicheals:

If you think that your self-righteous recreation of history is going to fly then you are living in the fantasy you create. At the time Gramm was given credit for being the major force behind that bill. Yes Democrats did in some cases support it but particularly in the house it was a Republican initiative, Clinton signed it.

This was followed by Bush who hired people who simply chose not to follow the financial services industry, The SEC was not in the lead on the mutual fund after hours trading scandal. they had to be dragged in. For those of us who have lived through this era of wide speculation like none in the last 50 years we know that it was a combination of Republicans and lobbyists that are pro industry that greased the way to this outcome.

I knew that during the last eight years that I was on my own that the SEC was insufficiently staffed to act on a complaint as small as the size I would raise.

It is men like Rick Davis, central to the McCain campaign, that created the environment that lead to where we are. McCain would not have advisers if he ditched all his lobbyists.

The conclusions Dan Balz arrived at others have arrived at also. It is possible to find confirmation of his conclusions from a reading of both mens books.

I will not get into a shooting contest with a professional dissembler and I will say that if you find fault with Mr Balz there is much truth to it. yes, there is a bias toward competence over drama but Mr Balz presented both sides of the coin.

Posted by: Gator-ron | September 25, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

"Then gallup better check with CNN because on Gallups own home page they show it as a tie."

----------------

Again, that was through yesterday, not today.
Tearless here. Looking forward to 8 years of Obama.

Posted by: wpost4112 | September 25, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Wow, they're making us register now? I guess they got tired of all the random anonymous's :P

Posted by: XanderB | September 25, 2008 2:32 PM | Report abuse

WHO SHOULD OVERSEE THE FIX?

Too many have fed at the trough. What Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives did was illegal.

http://pacificgatepost.blogspot.com/2008/09/fanny-mae-freddie-mac-congressional.html

Still no time to panic, but some executives and some in Congress should see jail time.

Posted by: JamesRaider | September 25, 2008 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Can we expect another "Trail" post sometime this afternoon or is everyone snoozing over at the WaPo?

Posted by: pasifikawv | September 25, 2008 2:30 PM | Report abuse

"Gallup shows the polling is again tied."
-----------
wpost4112 Nope.
That was yesterday.
CNN just announced Obama is up 3 in Gallup poll today.

Then gallup better check with CNN because on Gallups own home page they show it as a tie.

CNN and wpost and idiot Cookie are all desperately trying to fight back the tears and cant seem to see straight.

http://www.gallup.com/Home.aspx

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

"Ask Fannie and Freddie CEO crooks. They love the Obama. They love his predictability. Hell, they bought him. They own him. He better come through for them."

Wasn't somebody earlier on this post saying Obama has his head in the sand...Pull your own head out. Have you purposefully been ignoring the news about Rick Davis? I know McNotReadyToLead trumped what would have been one of the biggest headlines yesterday had it not been for this publicity stunt (or "show of patriotism" for those like yourself that lack the ability to think for themselves).

Posted by: 1qaz2wsx1 | September 25, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Can we expect another "Trial" post sometime this afternoon or is everyone snoozing over at the WaPo?

Posted by: pasifikawv | September 25, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

You may recall the latest in the ongoing stream of baldfaced lies that passes for John McCain's presidential campaign.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/24/us/politics/w24davis.html?_r=3&pagewanted=2&hp&oref=slogin


This one was about his campaign manager, Rick Davis. McCain has been hammered for the large number of lobbyists running and surrounding his campaign, including Davis. But don't worry, said McCain:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/24/us/politics/w24davis.html?pagewanted=1&_r=3&hp


"On Sunday, in an interview with CNBC and The New York Times, Mr. McCain responded to a question about Mr. Davis’s role in the advocacy group through 2005 by saying that his campaign manager "has had nothing to do with it since, and I’ll be glad to have his record examined by anybody who wants to look at it."


So reporters did. And found that he wasn't telling the truth. Not even close:


"One of the giant mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis paid $15,000 a month from the end of 2005 through last month to a firm owned by Senator John McCain’s campaign manager, according to two people with direct knowledge of the arrangement."


Well, though, at least Davis isn't involved with his own firm anymore, right? Newsweek reports:

http://www.newsweek.com/id/160713?from=rss


"Jill Hazelbaker, the campaign's communications director, said in an e-mail Tuesday that Davis "left" Davis Manafort in 2006. In a statement attacking The New York Times, posted on the campaign's Web site on Wednesday, campaign spokesman Michael Goldfarb said that Davis "separated from his consulting firm, Davis Manafort, in 2006." (A senior campaign official, in an e-mail statement to NEWSWEEK that was not for attribution on Tuesday night, said "Rick is no longer affiliated with the firm.")


Oh, my... You can see where this is going, right? Yep, you guessed it. They're lying yet again. According to Newsweek:


"Rick Davis, John McCain's campaign manager, has remained the treasurer and a corporate director of his lobbying firm this year, despite repeated statements by campaign officials that he had ended his relationship with the firm in 2006, according to corporate records."

"[McCain campaign] statements appear to have overstated the extent to which Davis had severed his relationship with his lobbying firm. Filings made by "Davis Manafort Partners" with the Virginia Corporation Commission as recently as April 1, 2008, show that Davis was still listed as one of only two corporate officers and directors of the firm, according to records on the commission’s Web site reviewed by NEWSWEEK. That filing records Davis as the "treas/clerk" of the firm; his business partner, Paul Manafort is listed as the president and chief executive officer."

"Another filing by "Davis Manafort, Inc." (with the same Alexandria, Va. address, and recorded on Oct. 17, 2007) also lists Davis as an officer and director of the firm, reporting his position as "T/Clerk," a reference to his formal title as corporate treasurer and clerk."


So... "left"? "Separated?" "No longer affiliated?" That's a hell of a definition.


What's so hard about this, for the McCain campaign? Just stop lying. It's not doing you any good. Stop already!

Posted by: DrainYou | September 25, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

How about leadership, journalism, and election campaigns that emphasize substance (policy, logic, fact) over style?

Posted by: mnjam | September 25, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

According to Chris Dodd and a congressional aide:

Obama: Has been in frequent contact with the committee shaping this rescue plan.

McCain: They have not heard from him EVEN once. He has had "ZERO involvement."

Posted by: JRM2 | September 25, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Naive billisnice writes:

"In the final analysis this is not a money problem. This is a broken government. A government that does not mind the store and regulate industries."

You mean you can legislate people into not making foolish economic decisions? How many people taking loans were warned by friends and coworkers that the interest rate could not be counted on to stay steady and or the terms of the loan were overly risky?

Did you know that most states allow quick loan or check-loan type companies that can charge over 300 percent annual interest on their loans?

Now, I guess we can blame the state governments but what about the idiots that take up such risky loans? We cant blame the government for every jackarse born on earth. Sometime sooner or later the individual needs to learn some harsh realities of life.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:24 PM | Report abuse


Gallup shows the polling is again tied.

-----------

Nope.
That was yesterday.
CNN just announced Obama is up 3 in Gallup poll today.

Posted by: wpost4112 | September 25, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Gallup shows the polling is again tied.

And yes, they also state that McCains increase is most likely not due to the suspending the campaigning issue.

And dems are hopping all over gallups wording hoping to turn it into good news. First pete, then repeat.

THEY ARE TIED UP. That is all. Get over it. Polls are not life. They are a friggin guess.

I know dems live and die by polls but sheesh, show some dignity.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

In the final analysis this is not a money problem. This is a broken government. A government that does not mind the store and regulate industries.

A government that allowed it citizen to be exploited by corporations without bounds.

Until we regulate and protect our citizens no amount of money will help.

Real working Americans do not have extra money to buy extra stuff. So money will do little but buy a little time before a real collapse. Vote all out before to late!

Posted by: billisnice | September 25, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

"STOP THE MEDIA BIAS!"


----------------

Yeah!

I mean look at the way that Hannity slobbered all over Palin and Van Nutten drooled all over her First Dude!!!

STOP THE MEDIA BIAS!!!!

Posted by: wpost4112 | September 25, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

Cookie (desperatedly screaming) :

gALLUP TRACKING IS 47 OBAMA 43 mCcAIN, WHERE THE HECKA RE YOU GUYS GETTING THIS CRAP!

Old news Cookie. Gallup shows them tied again. As of wednesday. Poor old Cookie almost had a coronary.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

TO Chris Matthews asks "razzle dazzle",...

This is a man that gets "tingles" up his leg over a candidate with ZERO experience and not for High School Student Council President, but President of the most powerful country in the World!

We do not care what sexist and bias Chris Matthews thinks! WE, the AMERICAN PEOPLE, will make our own choice for President! The Media does NOT decide, even though their bias is to the point of nauseating and has definitely ruined their creditability.

STOP THE MEDIA BIAS!

Posted by: Texan2007 | September 25, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Announcement: Effective at 3pm today, I will be suspending my normal workday responsibilities and setting up camp by the Potomac with a bottle of Jack Daniels in a paper bag. I will remain there until our legislators unite around a financial bailout package.

Posted by: gpbrown | September 25, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

What about Palin? You forgot to ask us if we wanted the governance style of the Alaksan pit bull. I think she would have had some great ideas for whatever high school classmate she picked to be her Secretary of the Treasury.

Posted by: mferris3 | September 25, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: 1qaz2wsx1

"Have you bothered to look into any of the history behind deregulation of the market."

Yes, I have. The Gramm-Leach bill passed with overwhelming bipartisan support because it gave US banks the option to compete more favorably against foreign banks. This bill, contrary to idiot Obamites that are spoonfed what to say in response had nothing to do with the current subprime loans.

Clinton signed the Gramm bill because it was a popular bill that gave Banks a right to compete. This is generally an American right. Citigroup had already branched out their business on a waiver anyhow. Banks were going to take their god given right one way or the other. The net effect of this bill was that US companies got stronger, at least in this regards.

Now, on to the real known culprit. Subprime loans. Were subprime loans only available after 1999 when the Gramm bill was passed. Ahem, NO. Subprime loans were totally legal since the beginning of our country.

Hell, we have states that still allow 300 percent interest to be paid by cheap companies lending to desperate people. And guess what? It happens in dem dominated areas all the time.

So, back to the problem, subprime loans. Fannie and Freddy bought up more than half of the existing subprime loans. They "made the market" for the other banks. That means for those not familiar with economics that Fannie and Freddie enabled banks to actually have a ready market for these high risk loans. The buyer was Fannie and Freddie. They hold over 50% of these loans.

And it was only republicans that wanted to crack down on Fannie and Freddie. Bush as early as 2003 and McCain on record in 2005.

But dems did not want their favorite federally subsidized Fannie and Freddie run the risk of too much governmental control. Then they would lose one more vehicle to pander to the poor and the minorities.

You see, dems really helped out the poor and minorities by allowing them to go bankrupt at record rates trying to pay off a home that they could never afford in the first place.

The facts are there to be read by one and all. But it seems that Obamites would rather wallow in their Obama made untruths. Because it suits their political leftist slant.

And Dan Balzless is happy to suck up to Obama, lick up whatever he dishes out and to put it on paper (yellow as it is) for the consumption for the all too stupid American leftists, poor, uneducated, misinformed and self serving hedonists.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse


gALLUP TRACKING IS 47 OBAMA 43 mCcAIN, WHERE THE HECKA RE YOU GUYS GETTING THIS CRAP!
------

Gallup is at 46 even. But, gallup states:

"A night by night analysis of interviewing results, however, does not suggest that McCain had a dramatically better night against Obama on Wednesday."

In other words, this does NOT reflect on polling concerning McCain's big drama move.

Posted by: wpost4112 | September 25, 2008 2:07 PM | Report abuse

You bet I have style said the black candidate in the $3,000. hand made suit paid for by his "small donors." I can read a teleprompter and I can stand in front of a lot of flags. All to make me look so Presidential.

What have I done?
Well ran for office, and ran for office, and ran for office
and told the WORLD, I AM THE ONE YOU ARE WAITING FOR!

Obama, GET OUT!

Posted by: Texan2007 | September 25, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

gALLUP TRACKING IS 47 OBAMA 43 mCcAIN, WHERE THE HECKA RE YOU GUYS GETTING THIS CRAP!

Posted by: Cookie100 | September 25, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Something ahs happened to McCain, seriously.

It's all over the internet, people think he has had a stroke.

He keeps making silly mistakes, someone in his position knows not to do.

I think he wants to cancel the debate, not only to cancel the VP debate, that they also want to cancel, but because, he can't answer questions coherently.

I am 55, I can't imagine a 72 yr old, 4 time melanoma survivor, take the brutal schedule these candidates go through!

Insurance actuaries, give, a 72 yr old a 12-16% chance of living for 4 years. This man i in remission from cancer, again, that means, Palin would be President.

What is really means is, CHENEY WILL STILL BE PRESIDENT!

Posted by: Cookie100 | September 25, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

New Gallup Daily: tied 46%

http://mccain08-hillary2012.blogspot.com

--------------------

And Obama is up 3 in Rasmussen and 4 in Hotline.

So what?

Posted by: wpost4112 | September 25, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

McCain Lies about Campaign Suspension.

I'm Shocked....NOT!


Andrew Sullivan has reports from two different readers in two different media markets that McCain ads are up and running as relentlessly as ever.

http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com/the_daily_dish/2008/09/what-suspension.html
.


David Kurtz at Talking Points Memo reports on McCain surrogate Nancy Pfotenhauer appearing on Fox to attack Obama:

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/219623.php
.


And then Pfotenhauer scoots on over to the Washington Times for a friendly little chat about the campaign.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2008/sep/25/live-chat-mccain-adviser-nancy-mitchell-pfotenhaue/
.


Guess we'll be seeing McCain at the debates tomorrow since he's decided to keep his campaign going. Right?

Posted by: DrainYou | September 25, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

With all the resources of Washington DC, paid for by us taxpayers, two men cannot be spared for 48 hours to talk with us?!

Thats absolutely crazy!!!

The leadership in Washington is in effect saying we are a traffic or airplane accident away from the destruction of our country and total anarchy!! The United States of America!!! Even the World Wars didn’t have this impact on the presidential debates!!!

I want to hear the candidates debate! Yes they are senators, but they are senators running for the highest office in the country!!!

How is it we are not worth 48 hours of their time??!!

Have we not a functional government in Washington DC??! Where have my tax dollars been going!!!

Posted by: bushieisa | September 25, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Democrats stick to their high moral grounds once again and allow offshore drilling. Why the change of heart? Nothing but politics. Why did they support the war in Iraq? Politics forced them to go with the current polling. Why did they oppose Iraq later? Same reason, politics forced them to do it.

Yes, reps play politics too, but dems seem grossly less sincere than the reps do. Dems make a habit of going with the polling.

And Obama, what does he do? Hell, he goes both ways, depending on the current group he is talking to.

One day he is sucking up to the workers, the christians, the people with guns.

Another day he is sucking up to liberals in SanFran and calling christians retarded and people with guns desperate.

Yep, good ole Obama, you always know where he is coming from. As long as you follow the polls that is.

Yes, Obama is for change. When the polls change, Obama changes.

One day he is a Muslim, one day Christian. Some days he cant quite remember.

One day he is thinking about the 57 Muslim majority nations and the next day he is talking about visiting the 57 US states.

Yes, I guy I can really trust. Ask Rezko, Wright, all the other crooks and fanatics. Obama can be trusted to do exactly what he is paid to do.

Ask Fannie and Freddie CEO crooks. They love the Obama. They love his predictability. Hell, they bought him. They own him. He better come through for them.

Country be damned, on to the presidency.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Obama has no business telling anybody how or what needs to be done with regards to this bail out. He has NEVER even shown up for his job. And the economy,when he did, was not part of his "speech."

And as for the debate, you bet he wants to debate. Obama has never done his "job" because he thinks his "job" is running for office. And that is how he has spent his adult life, running for office. And of course, the debate goes right along with that! IS Running for office the job of the President? Does it in anyway QUALIFY you to be President?

America, Please join Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Ohio in once again,
telling Obama NO! NO! NO!

Posted by: Texan2007 | September 25, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse


New Gallup Daily: tied 46%

http://mccain08-hillary2012.blogspot.com

Posted by: dcpsychic | September 25, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

The folks who just listen to the Democratic talking points should do more in depth analysis. See: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122230704116773989.html
The Treasury stands to MAKE $2 TRILLION
from the deal.

Posted by: shask | September 25, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

hussein didn't want to stop campaigning and work on the economic crisis. The reasons are obvious:

1. hussein has NEVER enacted or crafted ANY meaningful legislation during his entire "career" as a senator. He isn't likely to start now. (That's called: "gross inexperience".)
2. hussein is an artificial creation of the loony-left liberal media with no more substance or depth than a Daffy Duck cartoon. Whenever there are no mirrors and no cameras, hussein vanishes. His existence therefore REQUIRES that he remain in front of a camera campaigning. (That's called: "chronic narcissism".)

It is best to let competent leaders work on solving this crisis. Let "sweetie" hussein do the only thing he knows how to do: promote himself.

Posted by: ImpeachNOW | September 25, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

New Gallup Daily: tied 46%

http://mccain08-hillary2012.blogspot.com

Posted by: dcpsychic | September 25, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Nick:

“Hmm, this article had no bias what so ever! Lets let the man with no experience fix all of the problems of this nation, instead of the fiscal conservative who will at the very least be able to bring this situation back to some degree of stability.”

I think Stephen Colbert said it best the other night. If you want to put out a fire, who better to ask then the arsonist that started it.

Anonymous:

“Nice try, Dan, but you twisted the words. What he wrote was that the DemRats forced the FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS to provide low cost loans to people who could not afford them. But rather than simply state that outright as their plan, what they did was weaken ALL the rules for lending. The result. Naturally, greed--both from the poor and rich--took over. Free money! Yeah, like free healthcare. The DemRats never learn. Luckily, those on our side have all the guns. LOL”

Have you bothered to look into any of the history behind deregulation of the market. Read up about McShame’s good buddy and former campaign advisor Phil Gramm and the repeal of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act which your man also supported on more than one occasion. Lack of oversight is why we are in this mess, free uncontested handouts to rich people (via legislation and money) not loans to poor people. But keep drinking that Fox News koolaide stupid Republifuc*s. Blaming those less fortunate then yourself and threatening people with guns. Good plan to further your party’s agenda.

Posted by: 1qaz2wsx1 | September 25, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

By Dan Balz(-less)
What kind of leadership do Americans want in their president? (nudge nudge, hint hint VOTE OBAMA)

Gee, is it any surprise that good ole lap-dogger Dan Balzless favors Obama on pretty much any subject.

Is this the extent of Dan Balzless journalistic abilties.

Tell me Dan, do you really think it is that hard to word your comments just right to make one person always look bad and the other person look good?

Does Obama pay you directly Dan or do you just do it for the greater leftist cause?

You know, IDIOT DAN, we can use less campaigners and more real journalists.

Let me know Dan if you ever wake up with real balz and a real desire to actually tell the truth for a change.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

By Dan Balz(-less)
What kind of leadership do Americans want in their president? (nudge nudge, hint hint VOTE OBAMA)

Gee, is it any surprise that good ole lap-dogger Dan Balzless favors Obama on pretty much any subject.

Is this the extent of Dan Balzless journalistic abilties.

Tell me Dan, do you really think it is that hard to word your comments just right to make one person always look bad and the other person look good?

Does Obama pay you directly Dan or do you just do it for the greater leftist cause?

You know, IDIOT DAN, we can use less campaigners and more real journalists.

Let me know Dan if you ever wake up with real balz and a real desire to actually tell the truth for a change.

Posted by: KMichaels | September 25, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Congressional Democrat Opposition to 2003 & 2005 Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac Reforms Contributed Greatly to Current US Financial Crisis!!


http://online.wsj.com/article_email/SB122230672551773977-lMyQjAxMDI4MjIyNTMyMDU2Wj.html

Glass - Stegall was castrated in 1992 when Greenspan raised interest rates right before the 1992 election " to curb {non existent} speculative excesses." Gramm just carved up the carcass.
Bush the elder had supported keeping banks out of the business of investment banking and the issuance of securities.
Smart people noticed; the fed chooses government based on what is best for the banking cabal.


Before any deal is cut to appropriate $700 billion to bailout radioactive GNMA speed pools and failed Goldman Sachs derivatives (swaps), Gorelick, Mozilo , Mudd ,Raines and Johnson should be taken into federal custody as a demonstration of 'good faith dealing' to the American people.

"EVIDENCE OVERWHELMINGLY SHOWS THAT DEMOCRATIC CONGRESSIONAL LEADERS AND BARACK OBAMA OPPOSED, DURING 2003 and 2005, MUCH-NEEDED STRUCTURAL REFORMS TO FANNIE MAE & FREDDIE MAC THAT WOULD HAVE MITIGATED THE RISKS POSED TO THE ENTIRE U.S. FINANCIAL SYSTEM. OBAMA et. al. OPPOSED SUCH CHANGES BECAUSE THEY WOULD DIMINISH THE CAPACITY OF THESE INSTITUTIONS TO PROVIDE HIGH-RISK 'AFFIRMATIVE ACTION' MORTGAGES TO LOW & MODERATE INCOME EARNERS WHO COULD ILL-AFFORD THEM IN THE FIRST PLACE. THESE ARE NOT THE 'INNOCENT HOMEOWNERS FACING FORECLOSURE' OF WHICH OBAMA SPEAKS."

http://itssdpathologicalcommunalism.blogspot.com/2008/09/itssd-democrats-in-congress-opposed.html


Sent: Monday, September 22, 2008 11:41 PM
Subject: Re: "Who is whalen?"


Hope you all saw Newt Gingrich "On The Record With Greta Van Susteren on FOXNews"...he advises Bush; "Get a better plan, get other advisors" before entering into a $700 billion cram down scam.

R. Christopher Whalen for Secretary of the Treasury replacing Paulson ..right now... to present said plan.

Pennsylvania and Sen.John Mc Cain {F.H. E. Regulatory Reform Act of 2005, S. 190 } can partner to make this demand.

http://www.foxnews.com/ontherecord/


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


"Yet the plan also carries big risks. Christopher Whalen, managing director of Institutional Risk Analytics, says the government ultimately will have to spend as much as $1.4 trillion buying sour mortgage assets, depending on how many foreign banks participate. Its ability to borrow all that money is not a given, he says.

Whalen predicts the bailout will set off economic upheaval. The government will have to borrow so much that it will drive up interest rates, weaken the dollar and worsen inflation.

"I think you can see interest rates in the double digits," he says. "Congress thinks they can borrow forever. The dollar is going to fall. Nobody is going to want to hold U.S. debt."

Whalen says, "I don't think we need to rescue Wall Street. Wall Street is curing itself quite nicely. If we don't allow our people to feel pain, it's not going to inoculate them" against future crises.

Some economists warn that the long-term costs to the USA will loom even larger, as the bailouts hurt future federal spending for health care, Social Security and education.

"They're just blowing the bank wide open right here," says Jagadeesh Gokhale, senior fellow at the Cato Institute. "We still really don't know what the exposure may be."

Posted by: rtfanning | September 25, 2008 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Both men have effective leadership styles is what I concluded. One is for being president of the United States and the other for starting barroom brawls.

John, don't you think you're a little old for what you're good at?

Posted by: Gator-ron | September 25, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

We also have to remember, Obama can be passionate only to a certain extent before he gets coined as an "Angry Black Man". He must remain calm during his candidacy or the talk will be about how ANGRY he is...it definitely will not be called passion - as noted above for McCain.

Posted by: streetscapesnyc | September 25, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Boy, "campaigning" sure has a bad rap all of a sudden. A lot of people want to give John McCain a medal for showing up to do his job for the first time since April.

I missed where they complained about his monomaniacal devotion to the petty task of campaigning during the preceding 6 months.

It's not really possible to "suspend" a campaign a month before the election, anyway. The choice is between campaigning openly, and campaigning while trying to call it something else.

McCain isn't on the relevant Senate committees, so he won't be writing the bills or sending them to the floor. And Bush has ostentatiously called for his "leadership". So clearly his main role is to BE SEEN to be there and in control, and to take credit for the entire process--and for Obama to be seen either following his lead or looking self-absorbed by going ahead with the scheduled debate.

If he pulls this off, I have no doubt that the resulting images and sound-bites will form the centerpiece of his run from here on in. So he hasn't stopped campaigning; he's simply making his way to DC to film his most important piece of campaign theater.

Of course, he WILL have to knock off the sit-downs with Katie Couric and the meetings with Lady de Rothschild and the Clinton Global Whats-its and hurry back, or the deal might be sealed without him.

Posted by: youarestillidiots | September 25, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

"But the two are now playing brinksmanship over the crisis, with McCain calling for a delay in Friday's presidential debate until there is agreement on a package and Obama arguing there is no need to stop all campaign activity."

Balz, your evenhanded criticism is simply not true. Mostly, Bush is the brinksman here. McCain is running some gambit, which is hard to understand but clearly a gambit, and Obama wants to debate. How is that brinkmanship?

Posted by: Balz - opinion wrong | September 25, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

"When the elite news media stopped presenting the unvarnished news and became propagandist for a political party, I no longer believe anything they propagate . . . Most likely that's why most, (newspapers) are in financial trouble.
Posted by: pipian | September 25, 2008 1:12 PM"

NEWS FLASH: MSM was never impartial. This only bothers people once their favored candidate is shown in an unflattering (even if true) light.
The reasons newspapers are in trouble? By posting, you just contributed to that. It's called the internet, and it saves a lot of paper.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

McCain actually being the one to see something has to be done and he is going to do it. He realizes that party politics cannot get in the way of saving the country.

Obama just wants to vote PRESENT... he is too scared to take sides on this and only cares about the debate and not the good of the country. As usual.. in his mind it is ALL ABOUT HIM.. Get a clue Obama... you are not the most important person in the world and you look like a self centered ego-maniac!

Posted by: TomB | September 25, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Tennessee truthsayer

Did you know Delgriono got arrested for stealing in a casino, and
Sued for lying.

Posted by: brock101 | September 25, 2008 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Edge
Obama isn't on VACATION, he is campaigning for president. He is well aware of what is going on and NEWSFLASH! This is all taking place in the HOUSE not the senate! There was no reason for McCain to go except to politicize the entire process.
There are 97 senators waiting to get this legislation. I don't think Obama or McCain will render the deciding vote. This has been a truly bi-partisan effort as ALL of the reps and senators have had their phones ringing off the hook with angry constituents.
Get a clue.

Posted by: Penny | September 25, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Test

Posted by: Garance | September 25, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

Leadership qualities are certainly key issues in this campaign. McCain would have us believe that these qualities derive directly from personal character traits - courage, patriotism, determination, "maverickness", etc. Obama lets his qualities come out through his actions and demeanor. Throughout the campaign he has demonstrated a very high degree of intelligence, serious approaches to issues, coolness under stress, ability to seek and take advice, refusal to be baited into becoming someone he is not, and respect for others in the race. McCain's actions and demeaor are quite different and do not support his character based arguments. He is volatile and unpredictable, angry and vindictive. He develops what amounts to extreme dislike of his opponents and contrary to his early commitment to a respectful campaign has let his anger and dislike of Obama drive the extreme negativity and dishonest nastiness of his campaign. He is not thoughtful on issues. He repeatedly shoots from the hip with ideas that vanish or are reversed within hours. Remember the Lexington Plan?
What about last Monday's fundamentally strong economy versus yesterday's extreme crisis? What about firing the SEC Chairman? Some of these hipshots may not so easy to reverse or get out of. Will Sarah Palin prove to be one of these? If he made an unwise commitment to Georgia would we all regret the inability to retract that decision? Is his obsession with honor and the idea of "Victory" in Iraq likely to yield a solution favoring America's real interests? This is not the way to deal with today's complex issues and John McCain is not the man you want to answer the phone at 3am or to be too close to the nuclear switch. John McCain is a seriously flawed candidate for high executive office. Americans need to think about this in making their choices. These issues transend narrow personal hotbuttons like choice, guns, or "being like me". There is no room for racial predjudice on the scales of this election. Women need to look beyond candidate's gender in their legitimate quest for gender equality. America needs superior leadership in our next President or we will not begin to address the crucial set of complex issues we face. No one can afford the luxury and the cop out of being a "low information voter" in this election. Its time to step up and use our minds. We have been without leadership for a long time. We cannot let it continue.

Posted by: Ed T | September 25, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Why can't they both do both?

Why is McCain so limited?

Posted by: Sally | September 25, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Tennessee truthsayer

Did you know that steve gill made a ton of money off hilaburton stocks. Did you know michael delgriono is the bigest hypocrite on the radio in nashville?

Posted by: brock101 | September 25, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

McCain is becoming so transparent that he can't even hide from himself.

'Cut & Run' has finally found an applicable truth.

McCain can't do anything in Washington to solve this economic crises. No one is asking for his help. It is solely out of his hands, but he's using the opportunity once again, to put HIMSELF FIRST, and not his country.

How absolutely obvious this move is to get him out of a debate he's not ready for, and in the meantime, once again, attempt to divert the attention of the American people away from the issues.

He's not Maverick: he's an egocentric , half embalmed , self-motivated political has been.

Posted by: Alesia | September 25, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

laj82:
And Democrats are any different? By the way, I'd hardly consider Mother Jones an unbiased source for anything.

Posted by: Ed Weirdness | September 25, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

What Obama doesn't want voters to know:
1.) He uses Donor Services Group/Facter Direct to fundrais for him & they outsource to the Phillipines for smaller commissions on donations.

2.) Donor Services Group/Facter Direct is a HIGHLY abusive company that doesn't pay the US workers fair wages and Howard Dean doesn't care as long as he bleeds Americans for money.

3.) Barack used unfair tactics to win Caucuses in TX and DNC took NO action http://wewillnotbesilenced2008.com/video/index.htm

Posted by: B-H-Net | September 25, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

McCain: I need a vacation NOW!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

10,000 foreclosures happen each and everyday in America.

Nobody interests in Mr.Obama.

Posted by: pete | September 25, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Basically this a choice between someone who is mentally unstable and someone who is not. There's no need to sugarcoat it.

Posted by: shantih | September 25, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

The style differences between the two candidates can be seen most clearly in their campaigns. Obama's campaign has run smoothly, without internal division and rancor. He has smartly used modern communications technology as well as old-fashioned grassroots forces to power his campaign. He has been optimistic, even-keeled, witty, steadfast, eloquent, and reasoned.

Obama's detailed analysis of the current economic crisis was first delivered one year ago and remarkably prescient: the failed Republican economic philosophy of deregulation encouraged unfettered greed and reckless behavior on Wall Street which has now trickled down to the rest of the economy.

In contrast, the McCain campaign has lurched from one crisis to the next in a frightening display of haste, waste, rancor, and deceit. He drove his campaign into bankruptcy in the summer of 2007 and had to fire his top management team. He replaced his campaign directors in yet another shake-up this summer. He famously picked Sarah Palin as his VP after meeting her only once and failed to vet her credentials at all.

McCain's policy pronouncements have veered wildly sometimes taking several contrary directions in the same day. He is erratic, volatile, sour tempered, and vindictive. He has no over-arching philosophy of governing and has moved steadily to the right for the past eight years in an attempt to curry favor with the extreme right wing of his party.

This is the choice facing the nation today. Obama the man of intelligence, common sense, and balanced judgment. Or McCain the erratic, emotional, and vengeful risk-taker.

The election is an intelligence test and our children's future rests on whether we pass it or not.

Posted by: dee | September 25, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

THE PEOPLE CONTROLLING McCain/PALIN TICKET ARE THE SAME PEOPLE WHO HAVE RUN THE US ECONOMY AGROUND.

THESE ARE VERY INTELLIGENT PEOPLE WHO PREFER TO WORK BEHIND THE SCENES FOR PEOPLE WITH "LITTLE OR NO" UNDERSTANDING OF THE AMERICAN ECONOMIC AND FOROEIGN POLICIES. THE INTENTION TO PUT THEIR WEIGHT AROUND THESE “LESS INFORMED” INDIVIDUALS GIVES THEM PERMISSION TO IMPLEMENT THEIR OWN POLICIES WITHOUT BEING HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR THOSE POLICIES.

THE PEOPLE THEY CHOOSE TO SUPPORT ALMOST ALWAYS HAVE GIGANTIC EGOS AND OVERWHELMING AMBITION.

THE SUSPENSION OF CAMPAIGN AND PREEMPTION OF THE FRIDAY PRESIDENTIAL DEBATES BY McCain HAVE ALLOWED HIM TO PACKAGE HIMSELF AS “THE LEADER” IN US ECONOMIC ISSUES DESPITE HIS ADMISSION THAT, LIKE MANY AVERAGE AMERICANS, HE DOES NOT UNDERSTAND ECONOMIC JARGONS. BUT, THAT IS THE POINT WHERE HIS BRAINS BEHIND THE SCENES, NOT ELECTED BY THE PEOPLE, COME IN TO FILL IN THE BLANKS WITH THEIR BRILLIANT IDEOLOGIES.

IT IS VERY FRIGHTENING TO LEARN THAT NOT MANY CONGRESSMEN HAVE THE UNDERSTANDING OF BASIC ECONOMIC ISSUES AND RELY HEAVILY ON THESE WISE GUYS TO ENLIGHTEN THEM. IT IS SIMILAR TO PUTTING A PACK OF WOLVES INSIDE A SHEEP’S KRAAL!!!

THE ISSUES BEING PRESENTED TO AN AVERAGE AMERICAN CENTERS ROUND (A) ABORTION (B) ETHNICITY AND SOCIAL CLASSES (C) MORALITY AND RELIGION (D) GUN OWNERSHIP. THESE ARE MERELY SLICE AND DICE ISSUES WHIICH CAN PUT NO FOOD ON THE TABLES OF THE TARGETED VOTERS.

Posted by: Aoko | September 25, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, what we need right now is empty gestures and grandstanding from Mr. McCain. Hop right on that high-horse and ride off to save America, Maverick!!
John has a long history of bailing out when situations became a little difficult to handle. Let's review: 4 fighter planes, his first wife, his good friend Chuck Keating, he just bailed on his campaign when the going got tough, He bailed on Letterman (to get makeup advice from Couric) and now he is attempting to bail on the debates - both presidential and VP. So pathetic, but so predictable and completely in character. John McCain is the King of "Cut and Run".

Cut and Run, Chicken John. Cut and run...

Posted by: RABO | September 25, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Tennessee truth sayer

Go to http://Michaeldelgiornosucks.com

Posted by: brock101 | September 25, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

"Elections should be the last thing we are concerned about. "

-----

My nomination for idiotic statement of the day.

Elections ARE the will of the people...elections define who we are as a nation. No wonder we are in trouble with such shallow and uncritical thinking. No wonder we had 8 years of Bush and McCain is doing as well as he is.

Hundreds of thousands of men and women have died to protect our elections.

Idiot.

Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Maybe I'm in the minority, but I'd prefer to see my leader not running around screeching about the sky falling in -- even when it is. It doesn't do to get everyone in a panic, even during impending crisis, because what good is that going to do? FDR's "fireside chats" calmed a jittery public, and a "cool" Obama would be no less beneficial.

Posted by: SenorPlaid | September 25, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

judy-in-tx:
When you think about it, politicians waiting for a consensus is exactly whats destroying our nation. Consensus, particularly in politics, encourages self serving and self interests, and more often than not, is exactly contrary to the will of the majority of America's Citizens. Indeed, I'd be willing to bet that most American's feel that bailing out rich people for their bad choices is a very bad idea. Chances are however; that the "Concensus" in Congress will do exactly that!

Posted by: Ed Weirdness | September 25, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Come to think of it, Obama is more like Bush in leadership style ...

Posted by: Analysis | September 25, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

When the elite news media stopped presenting the unvarnished news and became propagandist for a political party, I no longer believe anything they propagate . . . Most likely that's why most, (newspapers) are in financial trouble.

Posted by: pipian | September 25, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

McCain is really good, he has been in Washington for about an hour and there is almost an agreement now. How have they ever managed without him?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

This is one of the best Presidential opinion pieces I have read all year. I congratulate the author on his relatively straight reporting. Thoughtful but not too one sided.
I like that.

Posted by: Tennessee Truthsayer | September 25, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

On tuesday Mccain said he did not report the three page report from paulson. 8 days ago he said the fundamentals of the economy is strong. Yesterday he suspended his campaign, and ask baby bush to call obama out. McCain is a little sissy.

Posted by: circus monkey | September 25, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Hey Ed Weirdness,

Read this if you can it comes directly from John McCain's chief economic advisor, see how much damage you can do if power is given to morally bankrupt individuals such as the republicans, especially this guy who said we are in a mental reccession and that we are a nation of winers because he sold us out to the highest bidder and caused the mess were in now. Read it if you dare, you might learn something...

NEWS: Years before Phil Gramm was a McCain

campaign adviser and a lobbyist for a Swiss bank at the center of the housing credit crisis, he pulled a sly maneuver in the Senate that helped create today's subprime meltdown.

Who's to blame for the biggest financial catastrophe of our time? There are plenty of culprits, but one candidate for lead perp is former Sen. Phil Gramm. Eight years ago, as part of a decades-long anti-regulatory crusade, Gramm pulled a sly legislative maneuver that greased the way to the multibillion-dollar subprime meltdown. Yet has Gramm been banished from the corridors of power? Reviled as the villain who bankrupted Middle America? Hardly. Now a well-paid executive at a Swiss bank, Gramm cochairs Sen. John McCain's presidential campaign and advises the Republican candidate on economic matters. He's been mentioned as a possible Treasury secretary should McCain win. That's right: A guy who helped screw up the global financial system could end up in charge of US economic policy. Talk about a market failure.

Gramm's long been a handmaiden to Big Finance. In the 1990s, as chairman of the Senate banking committee, he routinely turned down Securities and Exchange Commission chairman Arthur Levitt's requests for more money to police Wall Street; during this period, the sec's workload shot up 80 percent, but its staff grew only 20 percent. Gramm also opposed an sec rule that would have prohibited accounting firms from getting too close to the companies they audited—at one point, according to Levitt's memoir, he warned the sec chairman that if the commission adopted the rule, its funding would be cut. And in 1999, Gramm pushed through a historic banking deregulation bill that decimated Depression-era firewalls between commercial banks, investment banks, insurance companies, and securities firms—setting off a wave of merger mania.

But Gramm's most cunning coup on behalf of his friends in the financial services industry—friends who gave him millions over his 24-year congressional career—came on December 15, 2000. It was an especially tense time in Washington. Only two days earlier, the Supreme Court had issued its decision on Bush v. Gore. President Bill Clinton and the Republican-controlled Congress were locked in a budget showdown. It was the perfect moment for a wily senator to game the system. As Congress and the White House were hurriedly hammering out a $384-billion omnibus spending bill, Gramm slipped in a 262-page measure called the Commodity Futures Modernization Act. Written with the help of financial industry lobbyists and cosponsored by Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), the chairman of the agriculture committee, the measure had been considered dead—even by Gramm. Few lawmakers had either the opportunity or inclination to read the version of the bill Gramm inserted. "Nobody in either chamber had any knowledge of what was going on or what was in it," says a congressional aide familiar with the bill's history.

It's not exactly like Gramm hid his handiwork—far from it. The balding and bespectacled Texan strode onto the Senate floor to hail the act's inclusion into the must-pass budget package. But only an expert, or a lobbyist, could have followed what Gramm was saying. The act, he declared, would ensure that neither the sec nor the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (cftc) got into the business of regulating newfangled financial products called swaps—and would thus "protect financial institutions from overregulation" and "position our financial services industries to be world leaders into the new century."

Subprime 1-2-3
Don't understand credit default swaps? Don't worry—neither does Congress. Herewith, a step-by-step outline of the subprime risk betting game. —Casey Miner

Subprime borrower: Has a few overdue credit card bills; goes to a storefront lender owned by major bank; takes out a $100,000 home-equity loan at 11 percent interest

Lending bank: Assuming housing prices will only go up, and that investors will want to buy mortgage loan packages, makes as many subprime loans as it can

Investment bank: Packages subprime mortgages into bundles called collateralized debt obligations, or cdos, then sells those cdos to eager investors. Goes to insurer to get protection for those investors, thus passing the default risk to the insurer through a "credit default swap."

Insurer: Thinking that default risk is low, agrees to cover more money than it can pay out, in exchange for a premium

Rating agency: On basis of original quality of loans and insurance policy they are "wrapped" in, issues a rating signaling certain slices of the cdo are low risk (aaa), medium risk (bbb), or high risk (ccc)

Investor: Borrows more money from investment bank to load up on cdo slices; makes money from interest payments made to the "pool" of loans. No one loses—as long as no one tries to cash in on the insurance.
It didn't quite work out that way. For starters, the legislation contained a provision—lobbied for by Enron, a generous contributor to Gramm—that exempted energy trading from regulatory oversight, allowing Enron to run rampant, wreck the California electricity market, and cost consumers billions before it collapsed. (For Gramm, Enron was a family affair. Eight years earlier, his wife, Wendy Gramm, as cftc chairwoman, had pushed through a rule excluding Enron's energy futures contracts from government oversight. Wendy later joined the Houston-based company's board, and in the following years her Enron salary and stock income brought between $915,000 and $1.8 million into the Gramm household.)

But the Enron loophole was small potatoes compared to the devastation that unregulated swaps would unleash. Credit default swaps are essentially insurance policies covering the losses on securities in the event of a default. Financial institutions buy them to protect themselves if an investment they hold goes south. It's like bookies trading bets, with banks and hedge funds gambling on whether an investment (say, a pile of subprime mortgages bundled into a security) will succeed or fail. Because of the swap-related provisions of Gramm's bill—which were supported by Fed chairman Alan Greenspan and Treasury secretary Larry Summers—a $62 trillion market (nearly four times the size of the entire US stock market) remained utterly unregulated, meaning no one made sure the banks and hedge funds had the assets to cover the losses they guaranteed.

In essence, Wall Street's biggest players (which, thanks to Gramm's earlier banking deregulation efforts, now incorporated everything from your checking account to your pension fund) ran a secret casino. "Tens of trillions of dollars of transactions were done in the dark," says University of San Diego law professor Frank Partnoy, an expert on financial markets and derivatives. "No one had a picture of where the risks were flowing." Betting on the risk of any given transaction became more important—and more lucrative—than the transactions themselves, Partnoy notes: "So there was more betting on the riskiest subprime mortgages than there were actual mortgages." Banks and hedge funds, notes Michael Greenberger, who directed the cftc's division of trading and markets in the late 1990s, "were betting the subprimes would pay off and they would not need the capital to support their bets."

These unregulated swaps have been at "the heart of the subprime meltdown," says Greenberger. "I happen to think Gramm did not know what he was doing. I don't think a member in Congress had read the 262-page bill or had thought of the cataclysm it would cause." In 1998, Greenberger's division at the cftc proposed applying regulations to the burgeoning derivatives market. But, he says, "all hell broke loose. The lobbyists for major commercial banks and investment banks and hedge funds went wild. They all wanted to be trading without the government looking over their shoulder."

Now, belatedly, the feds are swooping in—but not to regulate the industry, only to bail it out, as they did in engineering the March takeover of investment banking giant Bear Stearns by JPMorgan Chase, fearing the firm's collapse could trigger a dominoes-like crash of the entire credit derivatives market.

No one in Washington apologizes for anything, so it's no surprise that Gramm has failed to issue any mea culpa. Post-Enron, says Greenberger, the senator even called him to say, "You're going around saying this was my fault—and it's not my fault. I didn't intend this."

Whether or not Gramm had bothered to ponder the potential downsides of his commodities legislation, having helped set off an industry free-for-all, he reaped the rewards. In 2003, he left the Senate to take a highly lucrative job at ubs, Switzerland's largest bank, which had been able to acquire investment house PaineWebber due to his banking deregulation bill. He would soon be lobbying Congress, the Fed, and the Treasury Department for ubs on banking and mortgage matters. There was a moment of poetic justice when ubs became one of the subprime crisis' top losers, writing down $37 billion as of this spring—an amount equal to its previous four years of profits combined. In a report explaining how it had managed to mess up so grandly, ubs noted that two-thirds of its losses were the fault of collateralized debt obligations—securities backed largely by subprime instruments—and that credit default swaps had been "key to the growth" of its out-of-control cdo business. (Gramm declined to comment for this article.)

Gramm's record as a reckless deregulator has not affected his rating as a Republican economic expert. Sen. John McCain has relied on him for policy advice, especially, according to the campaign, on housing matters. The two have been buddies ever since they served together in the House in the 1980s; in 1996, McCain chaired Gramm's flop of a presidential campaign. (Gramm spent $21 million and earned only 10 delegates during the gop primaries.) In 2005, McCain told a Wall Street Journal columnist that Gramm was his economic guru. Two years later, Gramm wrote a piece for the Journal extolling McCain as a modern-day Abraham Lincoln, and he's hailed McCain's love of tax cuts and free trade. Media accounts have identified Gramm as a contender for the top slot at the Treasury Department if McCain reaches the White House. "If McCain gets in," frets Lynn Turner, a former chief sec accountant, "we'll have more of the same deregulatory mess. I like John McCain, but given what I know about Phil Gramm, I wouldn't vote for McCain."

As a thriving bank exec and presidential adviser, Gramm has defied a prime economic principle: Bad products are driven out of the market. In John McCain, he has gained an important customer, so his stock has gone up in value. And there's no telling when the Gramm bubble will burst.


David Corn is Mother Jones' Washington, D.C. bureau chief.

Posted by: laj82 | September 25, 2008 1:09 PM | Report abuse

How is it that with the hundreds and thousands of federal leaders on the taxpayer's payroll in Washington DC that two men cannot be spared for 48 hours for us, the taxpayers, to debate??!

Are the leaders in Washington so incompetent that its all going to go to pieces if these two men can't show up like right now???!

MY GOD!!! Even third world countries have better control and stability that this!!!!
How is it that the United States of America is suddenly a "developing country"??!!!!!!

Posted by: theantibush | September 25, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

This is a great article. I wish all americans would read it twice before voting in November.
Thank you for your insights.

Posted by: Joe | September 25, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

From:
Head of State
http://headofstate.blogspot.com/2008/09/mccain-and-bushs-kabuki-theatre-mccain.html

Thursday, September 25, 2008
McCain and Bush's Kabuki Theatre: McCain Contacts Bush To Set Up Meeting To Prop Up His "Suspension"

Now we know why McCain hired the Bush contingent.

It emerged in the White House briefing today that McCain called Bush and asked him to initiate a meeting today at 4 pm at the White House, putatively for him to "deal with" the crisis.

That is, McCain asked Bush to help him create an avoidant trifecta: To try ti\o lend some credence to McCain's desperate assertion that a suspension of his campaign is necessary, in effect avoiding a debate in which he would face critical questions about his stance on the economy; attempting to co opt the financial crisis thereby trying to put an end to his plummeting in the polls created by his flailing positions on the economy--perhaps best reflected by his statement days ago that the "fundamentals of the economy are strong"; and, while avoiding his own debate, also buying more time for Sarah Palin after her embarrassing photo op at the UN yesterday, by moving her debate forward as well.

Here's how it happened, according to Q and A at the WHB:

McCain emailed Bush asking for the 4 P.M. meeting. Now, one reasonably might ask, why is today at 4 p.m. such a necessity for McCain, if his interest is solely the national good?

Because it is before the debate. McCain hopes to stage a meeting at the White House, thereby, with Bush's cooperation, lending plausibility to his claim to need to suspend his campaign. Then, if Republicans, in their own electoral interest, can be persuaded to come to agreement after the meeting, and before the debate, he would claim--in an act of utter stage management--to have "resolved" the crisis. Thereby hoping to take the heat off on his past careening stances and sliding polls and staunch the bleeding on the polls--before the debate.

This is Kabuki Theatre masquerading as substance--no different than what we saw at the U.N. yesterday.

It is utterly stage managed, utterly cynical, and utterly unrelated to the substantive deliberation necessary to actually resolve these matters on the merits and for our nation's future, rather than for short-term and desperate political advantage.

These occurrences are equally important for what they indicate about McCain's governing style as they are for their impact upon democratic process: impulsive acts that rely on drama and theatrical posture rather than substantive reasoning and long-term deliberation; a strong willingness to sacrifice substantive reasoning, deliberative process, and even prior structures and agreements to immediate political need; an attempt to reach outcomes through last minute stage management rather than substantive argument.

These should create deep concern for anyone who wishes for a change in governmental process from the past eight years.

We have an economy, rather than a campaign, to rescue. Putting nation before politics means putting all attempts to resolve it before political attempts to co opt it--and to move towards one's commitments, rather than towards a more immediate and short-term salvation.

Cite:
Head of State
http://headofstate.blogspot.com/2008/09/mccain-and-bushs-kabuki-theatre-mccain.html

Posted by: Emily | September 25, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

No one disputes that this is the biggest crisis of the economy since the great depression. Why would anyone question the importance of Senator McCain and Senator Obama being a voice in the decision making? I was wondering if it were such a crisis, why weren't they doing their jobs. I am glad Senator McCain has the foresight to step up and cancel a comedy show and go to Washington to help avert financial chaos. Sorry Dave Letterman if it messed up your ratings during sweeps!!

Posted by: charlieb | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM

The only crisis in Washington is that Republicans are behaving like idiots. McCain who has been speeking lik an idiot to attract enough of his base wants to talk some sense into them. However since he is losing in the polls now he needs to inject some drama. This bill will pass by the end of the month because the Republican holdouts still have to get home for their re-election campaign.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Personally I think both of them should have gone to Washington for this fiasco. They are the ones who will have to carry the reigns throughout the process. The debate is a joke compared to the financial crisis, and them spewing rhetoric on TV Friday night just doesn't seem to take precedence in my mind. What they would potentially say during the debate will likely be a far cry from what they do while in office.

My take, you have a man that wants to proactively get involved in the decision making process and one who wants to run his mouth.

I applaud McCain for making a decision, but that's about it. Neither candidate is ready for what's coming. Unfortunately they really don't need to be they don't run the country. The are mouth pieces plain and simple and Obama wins this hands down he sure knows how to talk a good game.

I think they should let the financial institutions fend for themselves. If that means I can't get that big screen or I have to live in an apartment a little longer until I can prove my credit worthiness SO BE IT. The bubble has burst for real this time. This isn't a dot com scenario.

We now have other countries saying we are crumbling which means the games are fixing to begin on a wide scale.

Elections should be the last thing we are concerned about. Get your house in order. What you take for granted today may not be there this time next year.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Haven't we had enough of placing control of our rights and interests in one man? The President, save for some explicitly limited executive orders, cannot do much to effect this mess. This fiasco is entirely the fault of Congress, its greed, its lack of oversight, it willingness to defer to bureaucrats what voters elected them to do. Neither presidential candidate has the edge on fixing our economic problems, and thus far, Congress can only argue the degree to which "taxpayers" will be screwed. Arguably, a candidate who is truly listening to what we, the people are saying, would be wll served to set aside his campaign, and at least try to get his colleagues to listen. McCain may very well be doing this. Truly, I haven't seen much to indicate that McCain has been listening to us, certainly his dangerously misguided position on immigration is evidence of his deafness to the will of the prople. But, at least he's taking a stab at getting Congress to listen to something other than their own self interests. 98% of the job of representing America's Citizens is "showing up", and McCain seems to understand this point. I fail to see how Obama will benefit from a debate if Senator McCain doesn't show up? An hour or singing to the choir interspersed with some awkward silences is not my idea of good political theatre. Indeed, the Emmy's tanked in the ratings using a similar strategy. LOL

Posted by: Ed Weirdness | September 25, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Senators Obama and McCain are being interviewed by the American people for the job of President of the United States of America. Debates are part of the interview process. I have never known a person to begin an interview and then ask for it to be suspended, that's just poor judgement and gives me the impression of a person who is reactionary and not necessarily a person who I would want to have as a leader.

Posted by: skennedy62 | September 25, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Haven't we had enough of placing control of our rights and interests in one man? The President, save for some explicitly limited executive orders, cannot do much to effect this mess. This fiasco is entirely the fault of Congress, its greed, its lack of oversight, it willingness to defer to bureaucrats what voters elected them to do. Neither presidential candidate has the edge on fixing our economic problems, and thus far, Congress can only argue the degree to which "taxpayers" will be screwed. Arguably, a candidate who is truly listening to what we, the people are saying, would be wll served to set aside his campaign, and at least try to get his colleagues to listen. McCain may very well be doing this. Truly, I haven't seen much to indicate that McCain has been listening to us, certainly his dangerously misguided position on immigration is evidence of his deafness to the will of the prople. But, at least he's taking a stab at getting Congress to listen to something other than their own self interests. 98% of the job of representing America's Citizens is "showing up", and McCain seems to understan this point. I fail to see how Obama will benefit from a debate if Senator McCain doesn't show up? An hour or singing to the choir interspersed with some awkward silences is not my idea of good political theatre. Indeed, the Emmy's tanked in the ratings using a similar strategy. LOL

Posted by: Ed Weirdness | September 25, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

McCain's reaction to this situation doesn't seem to recognize some of the elements of the entire process over which he has no control.
And McCain seems to need to be all about control of the entire process.
And yet, McCain's constant flip-flops on issues tells me he is basically indecisive, not a man who leads.
Obama, on the other hand, does appear to recognize with respect the interplay of the many members of Congress.
He waits patiently for the different views to settle in place so that he can then begin to see where concensus is coalescing.
Meanwhile, he is considering all the various sides of an issue before he develops his own stand.
I like that thoughtfulness.
We've gotten into a great deal of trouble lately by being pushed into situations which imperil the nation by people with ulterior motives that surface after the decisions are made.
The expensive Iraq incursion is a good example.
Meanwhile, other issues of importance remain neglected, such as border security and infrastructure deterioration, the negative effects of out-sourcing and the deterioration of the manufacturing base.
McCain doesn't seem to be concerned about the effect all of these other issues are having on the country.
In my opinion, I feel much more comfortable with Obama's approach to these situations than I am with McCain's brash behavior.
I support Obama/Biden.
They are true leaders.

Posted by: Judy-in-TX | September 25, 2008 1:03 PM | Report abuse

"Chicken" seems to be the word for the week.
Chickens are coming home to roost for the Bush administration.
McCain and Obama are playing a game of chicken.
McCain is chicken for running away from the debate.
He is acting like a chicken with its head cut off.
Paulson has been called a Chicken Little.
Obama may have to twirl a rubber chicken if McCain doesn't show up at the debate.
I think it is time to go for a healthy chicken salad....

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

"OBAMA NOT ONLY TALKING BUT ARGUING WITH HIMSELF

Obama is apparently suffering from premature dementia.

Obama vowed not only to talk to himself, but will actually debate himself Friday night.

Posted by: JaxMax | September 25, 2008 12:42 PM"

If Obama goes to Mississippi and does his impression of Smeagol/Gollum he is soooo getting my vote. =D

Posted by: brad | September 25, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

more Alaskan transparency....

"Sarah Palin requested and received an extension of the deadline for revealing her personal finances, until the day after her only debate with Democrat Joe Biden."

thanks but no thanks, Sara.

Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 1:02 PM | Report abuse

We also have to remember, Obama can be passionate only to a certain extent before he gets coined as an "Angry Black Man". He must remain calm during his candidacy or the talk will be about how ANGRY he is...it definitely will not be called passion - as noted above for McCain.

Posted by: JC | September 25, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

To Ed weirdness,

You should get your facts straight, the republicans have had the congress from 96 to 2006, it was the republicans who destroyed this country, oversight came in in 2006 when democrats won the house and senate back, but they have had opposition the whole way by republicans filabusting all meaningful legislation, oversight, energy independence on so forth, democrats have the majority now but by a slim magin and not enough to stop the filabuster republicans. You sir are either misinformed or an idiot anyone is possible if you can still look and the current situation and then side with the robberbarren war profiteering no accountability criminals also known as republicans. You must hate america and what we stand for as much as them...

Posted by: laj82 | September 25, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

No one disputes that this is the biggest crisis of the economy since the great depression. Why would anyone question the importance of Senator McCain and Senator Obama being a voice in the decision making? I was wondering if it were such a crisis, why weren't they doing their jobs. I am glad Senator McCain has the foresight to step up and cancel a comedy show and go to Washington to help avert financial chaos. Sorry Dave Letterman if it messed up your ratings during sweeps!!

Posted by: charlieb | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM

i hear ya

Posted by: yona loriner | September 25, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA IN OSTRICH MODE

Obama claims his greatest strength is the ability to get people with disparate views together to reach a consensus.

So when we have a crisis, where is Obama?

In Ostrich mode.
Posted by: JaxMax | September 25, 2008 12:39 PM

The Democrats are united and this bill can be passed with very little or no help from Republican's

Republicans have to decide whether they wish to live in economic reality or continue in the fantasy world they have lived in thus far. McCain has more sense than most of them. He has just been pretending he is stupid so these legislators constituents will vote for him.

McCain not Obama can explain to them how their political futures are tied to this bill. Don't you understand that this is a "republican political problem" not an economic problem at this point. This bill will pass, but will it include significant Republican support is in question.

Posted by: Oxford | September 25, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA: GET FACTS AND COME UP WITH A SOLUTION.

MCCAIN: GET FRANTIC AND FOOLISH.

LET'S PUT OBAMA TO WORK FOR ALL AMERICA!!

Posted by: BENIGHSE | September 25, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

"McCain has long rap sheet as a serial suspender"

"His 2008 presidential campaign, as GOP nominee:

“Tomorrow morning, I will suspend my campaign and return to Washington” (Sept. 24, 2008)

Day One of the 2008 Republican National Convention:

“We’re going to suspend most of our activities tomorrow …” (Aug. 31, 2008)

The federal gas tax:

“I propose that the federal government suspend all taxes on gasoline now paid by the American people — from Memorial Day to Labor Day of this year.” (April 15, 2008)

U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve purchases:

“Over the same period, our government should suspend the purchase of oil for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, which has also contributed to the rising price of oil.” (April 15, 2008)

Non-military federal discretionary spending:

“As president, I will also order a prompt and thorough review of the budgets of every federal program, department, and agency. While that top to bottom review is underway, we will institute a one-year pause in discretionary spending increases with the necessary exemption of military spending and veterans benefits.” (April 15, 2008)

Releasing his medical records, as a presidential candidate:

John McCain’s presidential campaign repeatedly delayed disclosing the 71-year-old cancer survivor’s health information. (”One of the problems has been getting the doctors together and getting everybody ready to meet at the same time,” McCain said.) In early March, the McCain campaign promised to release his medical records “in a month or so.” That turned into a (broken) pledge they’d be released by April 15, then May 15, before, finally, a bizarrely limited review on May 23.

His campaign aide, Soren Dayton:

For twittering a link to an offensive spoof video on Obama. (March 20, 2008)

Tax penalties on borrowers whose lenders have forgiven part of their mortgages:

McCain wants to expand the Federal Housing Administration’s ability to bail out subprime borrowers and advocates suspending tax penalties against borrowers whose lenders have forgiven part of their mortgages, said his senior policy adviser, Douglas Holtz-Eakin. (Newhouse News Service, Feb. 25, 2008)

Druggie pro atheletes:

A bill introduced in May by Davis, Waxman and Arizona Republican Senator John McCain would suspend offending players for two years for a first offence and ban them for life if they fail a second drug test. (Toronto Star, July 29, 2005)

His 2000 campaign for the Republican presidential nomination:

“I am suspending my campaign so that Cindy and I can take some time to reflect on our recent experiences, and determine how we can best continue to serve the country, and bring about the changes to the practices and institutions of our great democracy that are the purpose of our campaign.” (March 9, 2000)

The Family and Medical Leave Act:

Before finally voting for the Family and Medical Leave Act, McCain voted to jeopardize leave for millions of workers by gutting the bill. He voted to suspend the act unless the federal government either certified that compliance would not increase costs for business or provided financial assistance to businesses to cover any costs associated with implementing the law. (1993)

Medicare insurance surtax, for one year:

”The Senate today blocked an attempt to suspend for one year the surtax that many Medicare beneficiaries pay to finance insurance against the catastrophic costs of prolonged illness. This issue is going to be with us; it is not going to go away,” said Senator John McCain, the Arizona Republican who sponsored the proposal and who has vowed to attach it to other bills that come before the Senate. (July 28, 1989)

His first marriage:

In his 2002 memoir, “Worth the Fighting For,” McCain wrote that he had separated from Carol before he began dating Hensley, who is 17 years younger.

“I spent as much time with Cindy in Washington and Arizona as our jobs would allow,” McCain wrote. “I was separated from Carol, but our divorce would not become final until February of 1980.”

However, an examination of court documents tells a different story. McCain did not sue his wife for divorce until Feb. 19, 1980, and he wrote in his court petition that he and his wife had “cohabited” until Jan. 7 of that year — or for the first nine months of his relationship with Hensley.

While McCain suggested in his autobiography that months passed between his divorce and remarriage, the divorce was granted April 2, 1980, and he wed Cindy Hensley in a private ceremony five weeks later. In fact, McCain obtained an Arizona marriage license on March 6, 1980, while still legally married to his first wife."

http://minnesotaindependent.com/10356/mccain-has-long-rap-sheet-as-a-serial-suspender

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Balz! I'm talkin' about Dan Balz. Look out, ya'll. I got some Balz comin' your way. Dan Balz that is. Them Balz be all up in your face.

Posted by: D.'s Balz | September 25, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

The debates are going to be Kennedy/Nixon all over again. Obama will be looking smart, youthful and prepared: Mcain looking old, lost and out-of-touch. Mcains campaign knows this and is taking the easy way out. He has stated that the economy is not his strong suit...what good does he think he'll do in Washington over the next two days? This is the first of many stall tactics by Mcain to stop the debates at all costs. It's the same reason he's been campaigning with Palin joined at his hip--she draws the eye away from his less-than-presidential stature.

Posted by: Ran Skeert | September 25, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

It's not that the "deregulation policies have failed." It's that those necessary regulations that were rationally left in place were disregarded and left unattended by both Democrats and Republicans. Stop trying to spin this as something partisan. The bankers were stealing from us, all our lawmakers knew it, none of them did anything about it, and now they're telling us we have to bend over again. THROW THE BUMS OUT. ALL OF THEM. MAKE THIS ELECTION A WAKE UP CALL FOR ALL INCUMBENTS AND A WARNING TO ALL THE NEW ONES WE VOTE IN.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:53 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA LEADS AND SAYS LET'S DEBATE, SO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE CAN BE INFORMED WHO SHOULD LEAD FULLTIME IN JANUARY=====MCCAIN SAYS LET'S POSTURE AND USE GIMMICKS TO AVOID THE AMERICAN PUBLIC AND WHAT THEY WANT TO HEAR FROM OUR FUTURE LEADERS----LET'S PUT OBAMA TO WORK FOR ALL AMERICA!!

Posted by: BENIGHSE | September 25, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Dear Mr. Balz

I thought your article gave an insightful look into the leadership styles of the two candidates (and the current president).

What I don't really understand is your comment that they are both playing brinksmanship at this point. There is no doubt McCain has gone for the grand play - suspending a tanking campaign to ride into Washington on a white horse whether they want him there or not. I don't see where you find brinksmanship on Obama's part. He is saying, no, we should procede with the debates as scheduled. He is not being a showman about it but he is not going to allow himself to be stampeded into a corner by McCain's impulsivity. I don't think it is fair to paint them both with the same brush of brinksmanship.

Obama has been more presidential in this crisis, trying to obtain facts before shooting off his mouth, meeting with experts before offering opinions and trying to keep the American people calm in the face of a crisis.

McCain is running around like a chicken with his head cut off, calling for firings, commenting on a bill that he hasn't read (all of three pages, using the economic crisis to get out of a debate he is not prepared for and suspending a campaign forty-some days before the american people will be asked to make a choice which will affect them for years to come.

Hmmm....which style do I like better. Guess.

Posted by: Main Line Girl | September 25, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

dlp

My comment, much like what McCain has said about his own language is about the message...versus the style. Sorry if you can't understand my message....but it IS relavent, and you SHOULD question what his motives for being on the hill are. I may not articulate it in a manner that is pleasent to you, but that's just how I am. So, read it again...and translate the sarcasm and snarkiness to whatever you want that makes sense to yourself. It is a very valid point.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

One thing that seems to be overlooked here was brought home to me (excuse the pun)by an interview with a man who said you have to remember that people bought homes that are now in foreclosure because they had jobs back then. Those jobs are now out-sourced and people are not working and can not pay their mortgages. Whose fault is that?

Posted by: Kathy J | September 25, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

McCain calls a "time out" because he's losing the election. What's wrong, John, can't do two things at once? What a desperate move.

And all you Republicans, just admit that your deregulation policies have failed. Stop trying to blame someone else for the logical result of your own policies. I thought you guys were the party of personal responsibility. Well, take responsibility for the mess YOUR policies have gotten us into.

Posted by: ProAmerican | September 25, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

"Do they prefer the cool and reserved style of Barack Obama, who has monitored the crisis without interrupting his campaign?"

No, actually, most don't because they've realized the feigned "cool" style is only his weak passivity brought on by bending over on his knees to get strap-on'ed by his angry wife every single night. Will Americans vote for a girl in a man's body? Not possible. And it's clear who wears the pants in that family.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:49 PM | Report abuse

All I can say of the stop campaign stunt is this:

If it was so important to delay the debate tomorrow and hammer out a solution now, why tarry and speak at the Clinton global initiative today? Why not go to DC right after the press conference or, just go? Don't you think the press will pick it up anyway?

Posted by: Vinny | September 25, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

"fiscal conservative"

OMG, people actually still believe this about John McCain? After he and his cronies' deregulation led to TWO multi-billion-dollar, taxpayer-funded bailouts of giant banks?

McCain has NO excuse for not seeing this crisis coming, considering he was a member of the Keating 5 scandal, which allowed almost exactly the same thing to happen to the savings & loan industry 20 years ago.

Fool me once...

Posted by: Mary | September 25, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

John McCain remarked some time ago that he doesn't know much about economics. He doesn't serve on the Senate Finance Committee. So he has no standing to get into the middle of the negotiations. His amateur wildass intrusion into this decision-making process hasn't been welcomed. So, what's his game?

(1) Keep Obama's campaign, and the media,
off balance.

(2) Artfully finesse having Sarah Palin
ever having to debate Joe Biden. He's
gambling that the V-P debate will be
replaced by a presidential debate, and
somehow the V-P debate will never
actually get rescheduled.

Posted by: oldhonky | September 25, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

We just heard that Bush is sending FEMA to Wall Street. the other candidates make comments. ....................
http://thefiresidepost.com/2008/09/25/bush-sends-fema-to-wall-street/

Posted by: Ohg Rea Tone | September 25, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

Whoever came up with "A president should be able to do more than one thing at a time." is a neanderthal fool and it just lost Obama the election. It's the politics of hate again, without saying the words "politics of hate," that has everyone getting disgusted with Obama's fluffy sound bites, no nothing senatorial tenure, and fence sitting non-committal "present" votes.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

I suppose we'll wind up hearing that McCain's failure to convert the Republican Congressional Delegation proves he is a maverick. Yesterday, we heard that Obama had been in regular communication with Paulson & Co. Was McCain also in communication or did they accept his statement that he didn't know squat about the economy at face value?

Posted by: Phrank | September 25, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Do they prefer the brashness of John McCain, who on Tuesday talked as if he were prepared to scuttle a deal on a rescue package

Do they prefer the cool and reserved style of Barack Obama, who has monitored the crisis without interrupting his campaign,


Oh Yeah. The press is not biased. Those ARE facts. And their contention is that when facts are portrayed there cannot be bias.

Oh Yeah.

Posted by: JTW | September 25, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

I see McCain is having a huge impact...

"McCain revealed in an interview with a Cleveland TV station Tuesday that he hadn’t yet read the administration’s three-page bailout proposal.

"I have not had a chance to see it in writing,” McCain said. “I have to examine it.” "

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Some folks on this board have really good points... including those whom I don't agree with. However, some of you with the "geriatric old man" and "poopy" comments should grow up. If you don't have something relevant to say, just sit back and read some of the others that do. Both sides have good points, but the name-calling and bashing of the other side is just idiotic.

Posted by: dlp | September 25, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA NOT ONLY TALKING BUT ARGUING WITH HIMSELF

Obama is apparently suffering from premature dementia.

Obama vowed not only to talk to himself, but will actually debate himself Friday night.

Posted by: JaxMax | September 25, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

No wonder Obama is keeping aloof ! The Democrats are prime offenders in the building of this economic disaster .

Posted by: Eugene Hohol | September 25, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Obama is my candidate but I am not cynical as many are about McCain. McCain can not walk and chew gum at the same time. He can't go to Washington to explain to conservative Republicans that there is a real crisis and they have to act and also go to Oxford in the evening. He is simply too disorganized to accomplish both.

This is not a case of deception, it is a case of not being able to multitask under stress.

Posted by: David J | September 25, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Anyone who has worked on consensus-building knows you don't do it by video conferencing, you do it by face-to-face deal-making.

------------------

I've worked on consensus building and face-to-face is not essential. This is just a political stunt.

Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Americans need to ask themselves whether we want to elect an "actor" or a "leader" as our President? An actor is someone who show anger because he wants voters to know he shares their anger but doesn't solve the problem; OR someone who tries to score political points by suspending his campaign, delaying debate and parachuting himself into Congress to 'lead' a process which he could be more effective by making phone calls to his fellow Senate and House Republicans to drop partisanship and work towards passing a Bill to save the country.

I want a leader who is calm, confident, reassuring and competent to lead us at times of crisis.

And, the leader is Barack Obama.

Posted by: Eric James | September 25, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

And Candidate Obama has done what to regulate Wall Street and the financial industry in his 2 + years?

Seriously, if dealing with the economic crisis (something that the President can only use his bully pulpit to support or oppose) is the motivating guidance for voters, electing anyone who isn't an accounatnt seems midguided. There's more at stake than "punishing Wall Street executives" for taking advantage of a lack of Congressional oversight. Seriously, Democrats have controlled the government purse, banking, commerce and the regulatory Committees for over two years now. If memory serves, the sub-prime fiasco, and our current economic meltdown all occured during Democrats watch! Like it or not, Democrats have had control, they just failed to exercize it!

Democrats have done nothing other than stall, obstruct, and poison pill appointments and legislation, delaying any action, and failing to offer any solution. Waiting these disasters out, hoping for a "veto proof margin" or the presidency is not sound economic, environmental, social or cultural policy!

Voters are justified in fearing a "veto proof margin" by either party, as neither party represents our interests of concerns. Voters should focus on removing as many incumbents in Congress as possible. By turning out long-term Congressional hacks, Elites and Power Brokers, voters can take back control of our Government. By changing the balance of power and tenure in Congress, we can marginalize the damage that either an Obama or a McCain presidency will cause. Regardless of the pork that Congressmen and Senators bring home to your state, it's time to set aside our partisan interests and do something good for our nation, and send these crooks home!

Posted by: Ed Weirdness | September 25, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

McCain rushes to Washington; but what can he do/what will he do/what is he doing right this MINUTE?

Posted by: Ella | September 25, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

McCain is not in all the way as McRumi would have you believe.

----------------

Never said anything of the kind. Quite the opposite.

Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

It is clear that McC understands the gravity of the situation facing the US, and B.O. does not. Anyone who has worked on consensus-building knows you don't do it by video conferencing, you do it by face-to-face deal-making.

Posted by: msarrived | September 25, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Can anyone say what that geriatric old fart is planning on doing to help the situation?

Is he going to hold the other repulicans hands and wipe their butts when they make a poopy?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA IN OSTRICH MODE

Obama claims his greatest strength is the ability to get people with disparate views together to reach a consensus.

So when we have a crisis, where is Obama?

In Ostrich mode.

Posted by: JaxMax | September 25, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

It is obvious that Mc Cain wishes to insert himself into the situation for political purposes only. Does he think he can solve this problem without any knowledge? I feel that he has made his biggest blunder by his current actions. If I had any thought of voting for him, this has made up my mind.

No thank you John !!

Posted by: vincef671 | September 25, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Okay, so imagine this:

You are a board member of a large corporation. A senior manager of that corporation comes out one day and tells you and your stockholders that the financial position of your company is sound. Later in the week, he comes out and says that the company is facing an unprecedented financial crisis.

Question: Would you promote that manager to CEO?
------------------

Sadly, it happens all the time.

We even reelected Bush.

Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Hmm, this article had no bias what so ever! Lets let the man with no experience fix all of the problems of this nation, instead of the fiscal conservative who will at the very least be able to bring this situation back to some degree of stability.

Posted by: nick | September 25, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Nice try, Dan, but you twisted the words. What he wrote was that the DemRats forced the FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS to provide low cost loans to people who could not afford them. But rather than simply state that outright as their plan, what they did was weaken ALL the rules for lending. The result. Naturally, greed--both from the poor and rich--took over. Free money!!

Yeah, like free healthcare. The DemRats never learn. Luckily, those on our side have all the guns. LOL

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone really believe that Mcain has changed a bit since the Savings and Loan scandals of the 80's which nearly cost him his career? He said himself that the economy is not his strong suit; further evidenced by having Fiorina as his financial adviser. His Washington connections were the only thing that saved his career back then...now who do think he is indebted to if he reaches the White House--Certainly NOT the American people.

Posted by: not convinced | September 25, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

McCain is not in all the way as McRumi would have you believe.He is only looking to use this crisis to his own ends. He should be more careful - he supported deregulation and we remember the savings and loan crisis. Now more than ever, the American people need to hear from both candidates. The debate should go on. With regard to the financial crisis and the bailout. It amazes me that people will fall for the repulican fear mongering once again. first: no bailout- we must do something so think loans -loans get repaid in a set payment plan and timeframe with oversight. WS executives - jail - no executive packages. Better yet, provide 700 billion to every the citizens of this country to bail them out of debt and this country would soar!

Posted by: cbo | September 25, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

How is the demented, Alzheimer’s riddled, John McCain going to help?

By crapping his depends and having a stroke?

He's too damn old!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

I'll take the cool, calm, collected, intelligent guy over the irrational, schizophrenic, senile dumb guy any day of the week...

Posted by: Pretty darn obvious... | September 25, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Definite differences in management styles.
McCain is thrashing around like an indecisive teenager scting like he needs to do something, anything to get attention. He hears something and decides "that sounds good, I will charge off to Washington and save the day. I have no idea what I will do when I get there but if something good happens I can take the credit."
Obama on the other hand realizes that the presence of either or both candidates would just be a distraction so he trusts the people on the ground and is standing back to let them do thier job. I have been watching this for a while and have grown to respect Obama in the course of this campaign; he was not my candidate originally, I was for Clinton.
There has been a lot of criticism of him for not selecting Hillary for his running mate from several quarters, especially former Hillary supporters. I think that if he had chosen her to be his running mate it would have been the easiest way and the best way to ensure that he won the election. It would have been the worst thing possible for him to do for his presidency and the country. Every issue that came up would have half the country and half og the Democratic Party questioning his every move. Not to mention the inevitable conflicts and clashes between him and this powerful proud woman. (That is meant to be a complement, it's OK to be proud but far to often pride gets in the way of doing business.)

Posted by: Gherman | September 25, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

"because it was the democrats who forced these financial institutions to give loans to those beyond their means."

This is a blatant lie by the right wing radio personalities...
The law that required banks to give loan to the "poor" went in to affect in 1976..

The government did not force banks to come up with interest only adjustable loans. The new type of loans made it so people could borrow much more than they should have.... just think for your self for a moment...

Posted by: Ted | September 25, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Huge mis-step for Obama. Bad advice or bad judgement, possibly both. Given the record of his idiotic pronouncements thus far I would say it resembles a headstone.

Posted by: Buddesatva | September 25, 2008 12:33 PM | Report abuse

I think it's noble that McCain is possibly risking his candidacy in order to work together with other members of Washington for a possible solution to our economic crisis. It's crazy that Obama is talking about passing a bill when he is "elected" for us to give money to Africa for the malaria problem when we MAY be forking out over 700 billion to our OWN COUNTRY in NEED! He's not focusing on the possible total crash of the American Economy as we know it.

Posted by: Jessica | September 25, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Ed, very well put. And what would you expect from Obama who is a socialist and thus is more comfortable following the crowd than leading independently. For such a young man, Obama has shown again and again (the pick of Biden, for example, and now his inability to adapt to the financial crisis) that it is he, and not McCain, who is entrenched in the politics of the past. At least John tries things differently. Lord knows, the same old same old hasn't been working and, as Einstein wrote, someone who keeps doing it is characteristic of an insane mind. Now for the snarks out there, sure, insane might rhyme with one of the candidate's names. But serious people know which of the two candidates is a serious, adapatable Leader and which is the poser, the evader, and the weak sister.

McCain-Palin 2008

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

hey PM how did the dem's force someone into buying a house they couldn't afford?

I don't recall somene holding a gun to my head when I purchased my house during the boom. I just did the the smart thing, and crunched the numbers to make sure I could actualy aford it!!!

I'm against a bailout. If you can't afford something you don't buy it. Yeah I have maxed out cards, and i don't see the government come running my way with a bailout. You learn from it and move forward. Isn't that capitalism? That's why McCain voted for de-regulation every time for the last 10 + years.

As to McCain and Obama. What exactly are either one going to do in DC besides vote for a plan? If they can't do both I'm concerned. Ever hear of multitasking. This is the time I want to hear their positions. Not after November. There is such a thing as Sattelite uplink..

---------------

Hmmm...and I quote "Obama has looked at systemic causes", "Obama has blamed the policies and philosophy of the Republicans". Interesting...because it was the democrats who forced these financial institutions to give loans to those beyond their means. Home ownership is the American Dream. However, it's not a right and like every dream, one must work hard to accomplish it.

Posted by: Dan | September 25, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Okay, so imagine this:

You are a board member of a large corporation. A senior manager of that corporation comes out one day and tells you and your stockholders that the financial position of your company is sound. Later in the week, he comes out and says that the company is facing an unprecedented financial crisis.

Question: Would you promote that manager to CEO?

Posted by: philko | September 25, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Decisive? Yes - like the "decider" Bush: unthinking reactions based on minimal information leading to disaster after disaster until the adults started taking away the sharp objects post-2006 drubbing.

This could not be a better time for both these men, for one brief moment, to stand up before us in a forum and give their perspective checked by a moderator. It will take about as much time as McCain took to do the Katie Couric interview. Please.

Meanwhile, Obama: providing the same, consistent plan he has been offering since last year calmly matching it to the current situation. McCain: helter-skelter, shoot-from-the-hip, bouncing from economy is sound, economy is a disaster, fire the SEC chief(?), it's Obama's fault... What's next? In the words of George Will, worse than supposedly being "unprepared" for president is a temperament not "suited" for president. As this week has progressed, even the preparedness question has been answered in favor of Obama.

Posted by: thinkresults | September 25, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Bud:

That was funny. Her head is empty. I'm scared

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

amazed, you obviously have your opinions, but your using this to blame Democrats and lazy Americans is unbelievably ignorant.

Posted by: Norm | September 25, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Reckless, Impulsive and Unpredictable.

That should make everyone fell really good about having this guy with his finger on "The Button".

Keep this nut case out of the White House!!

Posted by: thebob.bob | September 25, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

hey PM how did the dem's force someone into buying a house they couldn't afford?

I don't recall somene holding a gun to my head when I purchased my house during the boom. I just did the the smart thing, and crunched the numbers to make sure I could actualy aford it!!!

I'm against a bailout. If you can't afford something you don't buy it. Yeah I have maxed out cards, and i don't see the government come running my way with a bailout. You learn from it and move forward. Isn't that capitalism? That's why McCain voted for de-regulation every time for the last 10 + years.

As to McCain and Obama. What exactly are either one going to do in DC besides vote for a plan? If they can't do both I'm concerned. Ever hear of multitasking. This is the time I want to hear their positions. Not after November.

---------------

Hmmm...and I quote "Obama has looked at systemic causes", "Obama has blamed the policies and philosophy of the Republicans". Interesting...because it was the democrats who forced these financial institutions to give loans to those beyond their means. Home ownership is the American Dream. However, it's not a right and like every dream, one must work hard to accomplish it.

Posted by: Dan | September 25, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

It really makes me laugh to read about the "coolness" of Obama. He's in the middle of this mess, and is just setting up another "present" vote.

Also in regards to the debate, its about foreign matters, not economical. No big deal to postpone it. Get to DC Obama, and show what a leader is supposed to do. Unfortunately McCain has beat you to the punch.

Posted by: evagal_mx | September 25, 2008 12:28 PM | Report abuse

To tlhwraith. Your comments are certainly thoughtful. I am a McCain supporter, but do see merit in both candidates. One warning though: Please don't try to blame things like Healthcare issues on President Bush. The Clintons had 8 years to solve that, and Hillary even made it her pet project and couldn't do it. So it's not just a Bush issue, it's bigger than that, and has been around longer than him.

Posted by: dlp | September 25, 2008 12:28 PM | Report abuse

The republican ploy is working. Bush is able toget get Obama away from campaign by soummoning him to Washignton for talks on bailout.He may keep him there until Friday without any resolution of the issue and the debate has to be postponed. That is what McCain wanted and he gets it. It is allo covered up very skilfully.

Posted by: beevee | September 25, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

To McRumi: This war on lobbyists is silly......

---------------------

I don't know what you're talking about.

Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Wow
It seems that most posting here do not know or choose to ignore the timeline of events.

It was Obama that contacted McCain to say that they should show unity and present a joint message - McCain agreed to this then ran to the media and lied that he will do something so grand that he'd have to suspend his champaign.

Honestly - if you fall for this, Palin has a road to know where that she is no longer interested in.

McCain "I don't understand the economy as much as I should"; A guy that has shouted deregulation from day one. Now suddenly after he has seen two financial meltdowns; both of which involved him or his efforts... now he will fix the problem by voting that we foot the bill; very mavericky of him.

Posted by: Daly | September 25, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton...I never liked or voted for him. Something clicked in his head after the heart attack.
He did everything he could to make sure Hillary lose to Obama and now tryes his best to help McCain to defeat Obama.

With supporters like Bill Clinton, who needs enemies?

Posted by: Serge Birbrair | September 25, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

A blogger asked "what did McCain suspend?" I think the real question is "what does McCain intend to suspend?) And the answer is: the vice presidential debates. Actress Palin doesn't have her lines memorized yet.

Posted by: anony | September 25, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

And now, a message from John McCain:

I am going to pull out of all my obligations for the next few weeks due to our multiple crises brought on by my revered Republican Party, including Friday's debate with my much more worthy opponent. In the end, it will be best for the American voter if they don't know where I stand. Right now I'm up to my knees in ignorance, but that's another story.

In a situation so dire, I wouldn't want to waste precious fuel for my private jet to fly ALL the way to Mississippi (about a two-hour flight from one of my MANY homes) to give Americans an idea of how I handle a crisis.

It's not leadership, you see. I don't know how to do that. I do know how to crash 5 aircraft, but that's a different story.

My friends, in this time of economic crisis I just can't fire up enough neurons to handle it! I'm sorry, but I'm losing it. And my Jihad-Barbie running mate can't be at my side during the debate.

Ok, I'll admit it. I'm scared, sh!tless. That's the real reason I'm trying to back out of this debate, on foreign policy no less (which is supposed to be my strong suit).

I'm just scared.

I'm John McCain and I did not approve this message. But that's what I'm thinking.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Every time McCain gets himself in a jam, he tries one of these "Razzle-Dazzle" moves. For example, he gets slapped around for Keating 5, then turns himself into a Maverick on McCain-Feingold. He picks global warming and runs with it, to keep up his maverick image, but then votes against actual improvements that would lead to less global warming.

In his campaign, he gets down in polls, then throws one Hail Mary pass after another. He's a consummate gambler.

Chris Matthews asked the question last night, "Do the American people want four years of 'razzle-dazzle?" I think the answer is obvious.

McCain should suspend his campaign indefinitely.

Posted by: Perry, Pueblo, CO | September 25, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

whoever came up with "A president should be able to do more than one thing at a time." is brilliant and it just won Obama the election. It's the economy stupid without saying the word "stupid"....

Posted by: ucan'thandlethetruth | September 25, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Neither candidate truly represents the interests and concerns of the majority of America's Citizens. Tell that most voters don't wish we had another choice? Obviously, candidate Obama, given the large contributions he's received from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac sources, and Wall Street, banking and mortgage connected contributors, would much prefer to debate the issue, than commit himself to supporting or opposing specific legislation. Particularly legislation that might prove offensive to his biggest contributors, or legislation that might not play well in the living rooms on Main Street. Certainly McCain has sizeable contributions from Wall Street interests as well, you can't play politics unless you have the financial backing. Arguably, McCain may have jumped into these negotiations for a number of self-interested reasons. Likewise, Candidate Obama may very well have taken the caculation to avoid committing in any fashion that might "bite him in the A_ _.

Still, anyone familiar with Illinois Politics, the Illinois economy, and Illinois taxes, would view the McCain choice to be involved with a greater degree of respect, than that of Obama's choice to "wait until the heavy lifting is done, and then vote with the majority"!

Posted by: Ed Weirdness | September 25, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

McCain did only what he can do: "GrandStand" like a politician who was spent 24 years in Washington can do. This is guy who in March of this year called for a repeal of all regulation on the ability of banks to raise capital. He has not come up a single bill/initiative to regulate Wall St in the last 24 years, do you want the fox guarding chicken coop

Posted by: henrietta | September 25, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

This bailout is the "mother of all scams". Twice fooled, it's you to blame. Investment banks sold pieces of worthless securities to the world and now, the taxpayer's monies are used to repurchase these worthless securities anew. Let the market prevail. Do not bailout!! Do not give in to this "blackmail".. Let Bush and Paulson's cohorts in big corp eat their losses..

Posted by: Omar | September 25, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Oh PLEASE CHARLES! It was Clinton who began this mess! Read up on this matter and quit harping on this imaginary greatness of Bill Clinton.

Posted by: evagal_mx | September 25, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

To McRumi: This war on lobbyists is silly. Lobbying is constitutionally protected. There's absolutely nothing that can be done to stop it, nor should there be. Do you complain when the education lobby pushes through congress a bill protecting teachers? Your problem is not lobbyists, its with the agendas of a select few people or industries that hire them. If your town needs new roads and you dont have the population & tax base to support them, you need a lobbyist to help you get federal funding. Does that make you, as the mayor of that town, corrupt? Of course not, it means you're doing your duty as a mayor. The problem is when people don't act ethically. But ask yourself what makes lobbying valuable in the first place.... it's hiring someone to help you get a piece of the massive pie that is government spending. When government spending increases, the importance of lobbying increases. If Obama proposes massive increases in government spending, or McCain cuts that spending, under which president do you think that lobbyists will see the greatest benefit? Yes, right now there are conservative lobbyists in washington that are nervous because their influence could be reduced... but don't think for a second that there aren't countless other lobbyists anxiously waiting for an Obama presidency.

Posted by: MSB | September 25, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

I'm voting for Obama due to a number of issues, but I have not seen any action from him on this except blaming Republicans. I think Bill Clinton was much more sensible in his response on Larry King yesterday, that we should all be humble at this point and try to introspect whether anything we (i.e. he or anyone framing public policy) may have done anything to contribute to this mess. Blaming Bush for what has been the trend set by the Fed isn't a solution, in fact it is only "asking for heads to roll." So, yes- Obama has asked for heads to roll in his usual refined manner. Let's be a bit realistic and wise here- even if we are going to vote for Obama. We are voting for change- and noone is excited about the candidates as they might be about a JFK or an FDR.

Posted by: Vijai | September 25, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

McCain, boiled down to his essence, is little changed from the bomb dropper that got shot down over N Vietnam over 40 years ago.

Reckless, and desperate, McCain heaves yet another hail mary looking to shake up this race.

Meanwhile Obama keeps a cool head, continues to work the grassroots, and suggests the appropariate course of action (the debate goes on).

As high as the stakes are, I have to believe that Obama has to be somewhat bemused by McCain's hijinks.

Posted by: MA | September 25, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

McCain's approach is impulsive and emotional, based on his instincts and assumptions.

Obama's approach is thoughtful and reasoned, based on information from reliable sources.

If we really valued education in this country, I wouldn't have to worry about the outcome of this election.

Posted by: DoTheMath | September 25, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Evaluate before placing emphasis on this Obama "bounce". This is the year a Democrat could put a dog as a nominee and still win. As we stand, Obama is questionably ahead nationwide, and his electoral college "led" is even more questionable. This is of course assuming the polls are a reasonable indication.

2004: John Kerry convincingly won all three debates and looked more "presidential" than the incumbent president Bush in the debates. On election day, John Kerry entered the day with a lead in all polls, and pundits confidently predicted he would win 300 electoral college votes. Even the venerated pollster James Zogby, of impeccable accuracy, predicted a Kerry Presidency. When the dust settled, Bush not only retained his ttitle, but did it with the highest number of votes a nominee ever received. The democratic shock was palpable: how was this possible? Then information filtered in regarding the ground game the Republicans ran. While the Democrats were busy hooting away on tv and radio, the long arm of the Republican party slowly chipped away in small towns, churches, parihes, community centers (you get the picture). Suddenly, a large swath of voters previously undetected by pollsters showed up and swept Bush into power. This is why many saw a Democratic nominee needs at least a 7-10 point lead just to be competitive.

As we speak, the McCain team is grinding away on the ground. The Evangelicals are rejuvenated, and that is major trouble for Obama. The size of the Evangelical voting block is massive, and they are spread through a large chunk of the country. When reports arrive of 60,000 at a local rally, this is concerning if you are a Democrat.

Thus the difference between the Democrats and Repuublican elite. The Democratic elite, and the "Obama nation", live in a fantasy world. They are individuals who grew up in relatively safe, un-eventful lives. They have a skewed view of life, one not seriously challenged to form their view. This is why they their fantasy views of mankind holding hands under a rainbow, singing and dancing. This is why they are oblivious to the fact that the political process is an organice entity which has survived the test of time, and adapted. To ridiculously come in and "change the system" is an open invitation to disaster. of course, if you grew up in a life with any type of challenge, you have a greater worldview...you have wisdom. They only thing they have is suburban angst.

I have many, many other reasons to describe why Obama will need a miracle to win. His race, his inability to connect with mainstream Americans and Republicans, the deepening staleness of his image, Michelle, the judgementalism his movement carries, his complete lack of experience. The list continues. The Democrats need to begin evaluating how to re-organize after this apocalyptic loss for their party.

There is a reason why the Republican representatives on television seem energized and confident. They know something the Democrats do not. It is called common sense and knowledge of life and human nature.

Posted by: ManCanadian | September 25, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

This article propagates the myth that the two candidates hold opposing ideologies. They are pretty much the same compared to someone like Ron Paul who predicted this mess with incredible accuracy and detail.

Posted by: Iconoclast421 | September 25, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

why doesn't anyone point out that McCain broke his word? He made a commitment to be at the debate and he broke it. He made a commitment to show up on the Letterman's show and he broke it. A man who breaks his word on such things will break his word on bigger things. His leadership "style" is immaterial.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Letterman has it right. If McCain was going to rush to Washington to get the deal done, why was he in New York? Oh, I guess he was "suspending" with the magician at the park.

Posted by: WAW | September 25, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm. I wonder how Sarah Palin would handle this crisis.

Posted by: jag8452 | September 25, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

McSame's way of getting out of the debaate. CHICKEN!!!

Posted by: Willard | September 25, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

It is obvious that people pay too much attention to the biased media interpretations of events instead of using your common sense. Why is it that no one will point the finger at the real culprits, the democratic congress. More of them pushing lenders to over extend to unqualified buyers, So everyone can enjoy the American Dream? Instead of saying "You want better things? then work harder! and be responsible! Save instead of blowing your money! We don't need more of the democratic ideas of taking from the people who worked hard and earned what they have and giving it to the lazy poor who are desperatly waiting on a democrat to get in office so they can stand around and wait for more handouts. PATHETIC!! No wonder other countries wish ill upon the USA. Being Patriotic is serving your country, not paying higher taxes so we encourage and support the laziness. What happened to tough love and accountability? If you truly are about the American people, you will encourage them to be accountable for their actions (or lack there of), instead of a free ride to be an unproductive member of society. I actually had a Democratic Congressman's Chief of Staff tell me, and I Quote.. "The American Public is not smart enough to make the right decisions" If that isn't an elitist point of view? Than what is?
Vote McCain / Palin

Posted by: amazed | September 25, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

We prefer the leadership style of Bill Clinton, who believed in balanced budgets and left the Republicans a 559 billion dollar surplus when Bush took over, which the Republicans promptly squandered like a child in a candy store with its first allowance. SOURCE http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Clinton Better to avoid a problem in the first place than try to fix one. Or as Ben Franklin put it, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Want to free up credit? Stop Republican deficit spending. Every dollar not loaned to the federal government to finance bailouts and tax cuts for the super rich is a dollar that can be loaned to you or your business.

Posted by: Charles Clark | September 25, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

People who say that this has been the deal maker or breaker are foolish, gullible and are in serious need of more grade school.

McCain's actions have all just been to take advantage of how easy it is to manipulate you fragile little mind.

Washington CAN function without either candidates being there to "help".

And even if they are on capitol hill, why should that get in the way of having the debate?

It's like I heard Obama say...as president we would need to possibly handle more than 1 priority at a time.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, Biden's the right guy. LOL He's the guy who, when pompously preaching to Couric about credibility, stated in the very next sentence that Roosevelt would have gone on television after the stock market crash of 1929. Problem was, Hoover was president; television hadn't been invented yet.

But not a word from the in-bed media. Ask yourself honestly, had Palin said this would it not be Page 1 and on every talk show today? Of course, it would. You dems haven't learned from history. First, a good third of you won't admit to pollsters that you won't vote for Obama in the privacy of the booth... surprise! Second, the more the media (like Rather in 2004) try to stack the deck, the more the public gets ticked off.

So keep doing what you do, Dems, and prepare to enjoy another 4 years catching.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

I do not like either candidate or really any of the politicians involved, however, it seems weird that Barak is going to sit on the sidelines for this. If you want to be a leader, here is your oppurtunity.

Posted by: peterg | September 25, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Despite all the meaningless and useless Republican drivel and games. Despite the negative campaigning of McCain and his Freddie-Fannie campaign team. Despite the lipstick hockey mom. Barack Obama will be the next President of the United States. Let no on say that Barack has not articulated a clear plan to get this country back on track.
We are watching and witnessing the absolute best presidential candidate since FDR.
OBAMA-BIDEN 2008

Posted by: ProudLiberal | September 25, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

"McCain's image as reformer takes a hit
Campaign manager's alleged ties to Freddie Mac call into question the nominee's pledge to curtail lobbying."

"Even as McCain suspended his campaign Wednesday and sought to show leadership by returning to Washington to join negotiations over the stalled bank bailout plan, his operatives sparred with the Obama camp over the role that McCain campaign manager Rick Davis may have played in helping troubled home loan behemoth Freddie Mac."

"The sniping between the two campaigns followed reports this week in the New York Times and Newsweek that Davis Manafort, a public affairs firm owned by Davis, was paid $15,000 a month from 2005 through last month under a retainer he had arranged with officials at Freddie Mac."

http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-na-davis25-2008sep25,0,1801675.story

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

We pay our president to do anything and everything that is required to keep our country secure in every way. He has no say or control over how many crises he will have to deal with at one time. McCain's responses to our economic "crisis" are irrational and immature and provide none of the stability and leadership required to inspire continued confidence in our economy, confidence which any economic expert would argue is most crucial at a time like this. In fact, without confident leadership from out president and other elected officials, no amount of money--not even 700 billion increasingly less valuable american dollars--will restore our economic situation.

Posted by: Kristen | September 25, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Sometimes internet connections freeze.

Posted by: HeyTheHammer | September 25, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

I was a USAF pilot and flying safety officer (the guy who figures out the cause of flying accidents) for many years. As you can imagine things happen fast in a supersonic jet, yet as surprising as it might sound tha cause of many flying accidents is that the crew acted too quickly when a problem arose. THe basic rule of any in flight emergency is to keep flying the airplane. Once you have taken a moment to calm down you start to consider your options. Often you take the time to pull out the manual and do some reading. Except for a structural failure or complete engine failure at low altitude, where an ejection is the preplaned action, you take time to think.

McCain should know that this economic emergency should be delt with in the same way (although considering the number of aircraft he lost while in the navy I wonder how good of a pilot he was). McCain needs to keep flying the plane, not wildly change his plans or make some half paniced anouncement every day or two. McCain is not the economic expert, neither is Obama, but Obama realizes it and McCain either has forgotten that he doesn't know much about the economy, or he doesn't think it matters if he understands it or not. McCain is not the President, he's not the secretary of the treasury, he's not even on any relevent commitees, so he doesn't need to be injecting himself into this crisis. Imagine what would happen if Presidential candidates put themselves in the middle of national security matters. We would see the chain of command broken down and pandamonium in the field. McCain should have the experience to understand that inserting Presidential politics into a crisis is a sure way to make the solution dramatically harder to find.

I would have thought the ex military pilot would have understood all this better than the guy who never even flew a plane, but apparently experience doesn't replace common sense or ego.

Posted by: captbilly | September 25, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Please look this over: Posted by: Phillip | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM


McCain Suspends Campaign, Cancels First Debate
John McCain suspended his campaign, stopped running ads, and said he would not participate in the first debate scheduled for tomorrow at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, MS. He said that the nation is on the brink of a serious recession and this is no time for politics. McCain has been in the Senate 25 years. He knows precisely what will happen if he barges into the office of Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT), chairman of the Senate banking committee and announces: "OK, Outta here, I'm taking over now. Dodd's reaction would not be printable on a family Website like this one and McCain would be instantly and unceremoniously shown the door. There are two people responsible for writing banking bills: Dodd and his House counterpart Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA). If Dodd wants input from the Republicans on this, he will ask the ranking member on his committee, Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL). McCain and Obama play no role and McCain knows that very well.

Posted by: Will Roberts - Modern Day Will Rogers | September 25, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

On suspending his campaign and postponing the debate Friday.

This sounds presidential and above politics. Until we see what McCain did after the announcement.

On Wednesday after he announced this, McCain did not go to DC. He went to be interviewed by Katie Couric.

On Thursday morning, he did not go to DC, he was in New York to speak to Clinton's global group, in person (Obama apoke via remote video).

McCain finds time to speak with Couric and Clinton, but feels there is no time to speak 90 minutes with the American public on the most eagerly awaited presidential debate ever.

This was not a presidential act or bipartisanship. It was a blatant political ploy. He is afraid to debate Obama now. McCain is a coward

Posted by: Jack S | September 25, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

By the people for the people!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

To say that the current president and congress can handle this without the next president in on the proceedings is naive. The person who will inherit this economy should be in the mix and should have a say in it. That way, they can't as easily do what every president has done, blame the previous administration for the outcome.

http://www.votewithyourshirt.com

Posted by: VoteWithYourShirt | September 25, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

McCain understands that leadership is not a spectator sport. Obama is still on the sidelines waiting for someone else to lead.

Posted by: Scott | September 25, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

McCain is just flailing in the wind. I laugh at those who call him being "decisive", he isn't, the reality is that he's behind and has very little to lose by doubling down so much. If McCains performance since choosing Palin is any indication of his decision making ability, thanks, but no thanks. We've already seen what rash and impulsive leadership has brought us, 2 wars, an economy in tatters, healthcare coverage failing, and a littany of other issues.

I must say that at times Obamas reserved nature frustrates me. I wish sometimes he was a little more "out-in-front" about stuff. But the truth is, given the option, I'd rather have an analytical thinker who has patience than a mediocre dullard who is brash. The times was are about to face demand long term vision and leadership, not merely reactionary decisionmaking.

Posted by: tlhwraith | September 25, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

"Somehow I don't recall JFK going on vacation during the Cuban Missile Crisis and saying "if you need me call me"!

If i recall Kennedy was the President at the time. Neither Obama or McCain are at this time. How many sitting presidents have you seen call in candidates to help correct a mess on his watch? Dubyas MBA stands for More Broke Americans.....

Posted by: American First | September 25, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

This is sort of like auditioning for president, which would be amusing if our country wasn't in the midst of a crisis.
I find McCain's impetuousness frightening. He shoots from the hip, and speaks without thinking of the consequences. This could have disastrous consequences for our country. I am much more comfortable with Obama's deliberative approach. Also, McCain seems to be opportunistic and politically motivated like Bush. And since both of his advisors,Gramm and Davis have their fingers in this financial mess, claiming he will "reform Washington" is a joke. And how does he think he will be able to work with the Democrats after running such a divisive sleazy campaign? And someone needs to tell Palin that she shouldn't toss around words like the "Great Depression" quite so casually when the country is in a financial crisis. The choice couldn't be more clear.
God save the world if we make another mistake.

Posted by: Pat W. | September 25, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

There can be no debate over a Congressman's position when they sign their name for or against a piece of legislation. Voting "present" leaves the question open. If you are truly concerned over the position held by either candidate then it will be very clear based on how they vote and I submit this would speak much more loudly then a prepared debate. Given the enormous complexity of the issues, the seeming inevitability of committing large sums of taxpayer dollars in the face of widely held skepticism and the unprecedented nature of the economic environment, becoming directly involved first hand in the discussion and ultimate vote with your elected colleagues is the only responsible action. These are, after all, the people we will have to look to as the watchdogs of whatever package gets approved. Are we really going to elect a President based on an opinion drawn from a 90 minute debate. If so, this is in itself a comment on America.

Posted by: LW | September 25, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

John McCain is suffering of ADHD. He keeps changing his mind in every 5 secs and idiotic right wing nuts cheer it as Mavrick style.

Posted by: Adam Habib Plano, TX | September 25, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Are we in 2008 yet? Isn`t there any telecommunication solution, like email, phone, video conference to enable both of them to contribute to a solution without being IN washington? Maybe they could also debate by video conference?

I don't know but if neither solving crisis or debating can be done through 20 years old (and more) technologies I wonder where McCain is leading the country? What if there is a crisis in Iraq and a crisis in the United states and he can only adress one at a time, which one will he chose? I would rather have the president who can handle both at the price of contributing via telecommunications.

Posted by: Eric | September 25, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

McCain has been reactionary from day 1 and his actions show how he will REACT to any crisis we are faced with. I do not want a knee-jerk president. He inspires panic.

Posted by: D. Brown | September 25, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Balz,

You miss a key aspect to all this. What does the last 36 hours tell us about Obama and McCain's ability to build bipartisan coalitions in a crisis -- in other words, what does it tell us about their ability to put the country first, instead of politics.

Well, one candidate tried to help push Democrats and Republicans together by quietly reaching out to his opponent, beyond the glare of presidential politics, to agree on a set of joint principles that could help steer Congress and the White House to an agreement.

The other candidate rejected the idea of issuing a set of agreed principles, and then unilaterally, and very publicly disrupted delicate ongoing negotiations with a showboat (and false) declaration that things weren't working and he was riding into town to knock heads together.

Seems pretty clear to this former McCain supporter which candidate is likely to be the better bridge-builder.

Posted by: wappinne | September 25, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

"Philosophically, stylistically and temperamentally, Americans have a real choice in November."

True. Philosophy, style and temperament will no doubt contribute to the outcome... All the more reason to support McCain. Brash? How about decisive. Impetuous? Try nimble or agile. And the real reason to support McCain over Obama? Active and effective trumps passive and hesitant for me. McCain is a leader. Obama is... a student.

See you at the polls.

Posted by: dbaker221 | September 25, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Yes the situation is serious, but I'm a lot more comforted by Obama's steady demeanor than I am by McCain's gesture, which seems calculated to heighten the anxiety inherent in this crisis by diverting the normal election process. I'll be very disappointed in McCain if he dramas his way out of the debate on Friday.

Posted by: epk | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

In regards to the debate:

1) if either senator can not be in Miss, move the debate to DC.
2) if the debate can not be moved, send the vp candidates.

I prefer #1 as I would wrather hear from the first team, but I wouldn't mind seeing how prepared the second team is.

Lastly, this is an important test on how the candidates can keep multiple important issues moving.

peace, Rick

Posted by: Rick | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

I think McCain is using this as a means to get Obama to the Whitehouse, there the drones will put something in Obama's water, just like the Russian's did the the Ukrainian president. My advice to Obama is DON'T DRINK the WATER, or EAT the SOUP, or anything. In fact if you see Cheney, run the other way. Its a big fat trap. And at the very least, they want to steal the limelight.

Avoid those scalliwags and polliwogs. They're no good. And the bail-out stinks to high heaven too. $700 billion is the going away gift for Bush and his Cronies for such a good job they've done. Ha! Do we really need to reward them again after Iraq? That would be letting them finish the job, and throwing the American people on a sword.

Posted by: electrolidfury | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

UM SAM, hate to brake the bad news to you buddy, but Mccain's lead Adviser was still taking money from Fannie and Freddie up til a month ago. This is his adviser..so sure both candidates took money from fannie and freddie, but only one has an adviser that was on their payroll, taking lobbyist cash.

Posted by: David | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Somehow I don't recall JFK going on vacation during the Cuban Missile Crisis and saying "if you need me call me"!

I remember him sticking close to the Whitehouse.....maybe BHO has a different style!

Posted by: EDGE | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

McCain basically lets his emmotions get the best of him when at times a cooler head usually prevails. Its time this cowboy mentality to end. Wasn't it Bush who use to talk about things in black and white and good and evil?? I dunno but McCain sounds like he's reading the same play book.

Posted by: al freeman | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

President Bush's style is an insult to those of us with MABA's.

The problem should have never got to this point.

Posted by: geek | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Obama has not really taken a position on this crisis. You could say that he does not want to make a wrong move with the White House on the line. Or you could say he doen't want to take a position because he has never had to make any executive decisions and doesn't want to look like a fool.

Posted by: Hmmm | September 25, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

It's nice to know that the next President will be a take charge leader who believes in what he thinks is the best for the red, white and blue versus let's just wait and see how much longer this is going to take to fix...I'm for McCains' style.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm...and I quote "Obama has looked at systemic causes", "Obama has blamed the policies and philosophy of the Republicans". Interesting...because it was the democrats who forced these financial institutions to give loans to those beyond their means. Home ownership is the American Dream. However, it's not a right and like every dream, one must work hard to accomplish it.

Posted by: mail | September 25, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Sam, are you serious? Two of McCain's campaign managers are LOBBYISTS FOR FANNIE/FREDDIE MAC. Are you literally ignorant, or just making things up?

Posted by: HeySam! | September 25, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

I think McCain is using this as a means to get Obama to the Whitehouse, there the drones will put something in Obama's water, just like the Russian's did the the Ukrainian president. My advice to Obama is DON'T DRINK the WATER, or EAT the SOUP, or anything. In fact if you see Cheney, run the other way. Its a big fat trap. And at the very least, they want to steal the limelight.

Avoid those scalliwags and polliwogs. They're no good. And the bail-out stinks to high heaven too. $700 billion is the going away gift for Bush and his Cronies for such a good job they've done. Ha! Do we really need to reward them again after Iraq? That would be letting them finish the job, and throwing the American people on a sword.

Posted by: electrolidfury | September 25, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

First ...
"Ironically, Obama and McCain are now very close together on the terms of a deal. In this case, policy differences appear minimal."

Then ...
"Philosophically, stylistically and temperamentally, Americans have a real choice in November."

Right! A real choice! TweedleDee and TweedleDum both choose to push the US economic system over the brink, and we, the pushees, get to choose the pusher. Great!

Posted by: RickH01 | September 25, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

"Brash", "Elbowed his way"?... "Cool", Reserved"?... Wow! Thanks for making our choice so obvious with your unbiased description.

One could interpret Obama's reserve as "Clueless" or even "Hesitant"... One thing it isn't... "Decisive"

Posted by: wrburton | September 25, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

But WHY???

Friday's debate is about Foreign Policy. Everyone agrees that it's McCain's strong point. This isn't even something that he would need a few days to study up on.

Even if you cast cynicism aside and take McCain's "campaign suspension" at face value, he still should be able to fly in for the debate, give 90 minues worth of unrehearsed answers on an area that he's practiced and knowledgable in, and then whip back to DC.

So why suggest postponing the one event on the calendar that is all but guaranteed to make you look good?

My guess is that we're going to see some proposal from the McCain camp that makes the VP debate less prominent. If they don't actually suggest a postponement or cancellation of the VP debate, they'll suggest that the replacement foreign policy debate happen the day after the VP debate or something else that'll make any of the VP sound/video clips short-lived news.

Posted by: philko | September 25, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I CANNOT BELIEVE you called Bush's leadership style MBA - are you out of your mind!!??? This guy is dumb as a sack of rocks. Probably would have failed out of middle school if his daddy didn't have a oil tanker full of $. What a slap in the face to every person busting their rear ends in b-school.

Posted by: Peter G | September 25, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

McCain's sudden loose-cannon "I am dropping everything to go be the indispensable moral force in Warshington" is all about McCain, all about changing the subject and getting himself in the spotlight, and transparently all about avoiding the debate which he had hoped to make into a showcase of his foreign-policy "expertise." And above all it's about trying to buy himself and Governor Palin more time to get ready for debates that, as things were set up, were going to make both of them look lame and pathetic.

Posted by: herzliebster | September 25, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

We’re bailing, but who punched the hole in the boat? Bill Clinton, in 1999.

Is it time to debate and place blame, or to go to work and repair what we cam?
Whether one blames Obama for his ties to Fannie-Mae or McCain for his, blame is hardly the the pertinent question. Besides, neither man is to blame, or both - that’s just politics. Blaming congressional Democrats for allowing this to happen on their watch, or going back into time to blame a Republican Congress is not foremost on our collective mind. Attacking our embattled president is pointless, history will judge him and he will wrap up his administration in a few weeks and turn it all over to John McCain or Barrack Obama. By most accounts, Congress will remain largely in its present Democratic-controlled composition. In time, the ongoing investigation will give us some investment guru heads to lop off, but none will be that of a politician.

Media too politicized to help

Today, the media portrays all events in encrypted, politically-tainted sound-bites that lead one down a trail crowded with half-truths, headline grabs, and agenda-driven productions offered by poll-taking, heavily biased air personalities or “news-readers” who often don’t know much beyond what was presented for them to read on a teleprompter or assigned by a behind-the-scenes editor. Because we cannot rely on our media to introduce a bipartisan conversation, this is a time for citizens to seek clarity, more than superficial opinions of who is to blame for the current economic melt-down. The reason for our financial collapse is bipartisan in nature. Ironically, there is adequate blame to go around rather evenly. Homeowners, investment gurus, mortgage houses, banks and politicians alike took advantage of an open-ended credit policy dangerously deregulated by Democrats and Republicans alike and signed off on by President Bill Clinton in 1999.

What are origins of the current economic crisis?

Here is a bird’s-eye view of the sky-is-the-limit policies that have sent our nation’s economy reeling toward the ground in 2008. In 1933, after the market crash of 1929, the U.S. economy teetered on the edge of total collapse and the Glass-Steagall Act was passed to separate and regulate the Commercial and Investment functions of major banks in America. The banking Act of 1933 also founded the Federal Deposit Insurance Company (FDIC) which insures bank deposits by the U.S. government. The bill strongly regulated the Investment banking industry, holding Investment bankers to similar collateral formulas as Commercial Banks. Eventually, as the U.S. economy recovered, the investment bankers, who were no longer allowed to take deposits but were collaterally balanced, stood on solid ground. The sense is that our economy grew safely, if at a slower than contemporary rate.

The banking industry began seeking repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act in the 1980s. The industry was lobbying to remove the bulkhead separating Investment banking from Commercial banking, so that the coveted revenue of commercial banks could be deregulated and used by the investment and securities arm of commercial banks. Removing the firewall would enable commercial lenders, for example, Citigroup, the largest U.S. bank as measured by assets, to underwrite and trade mortgage-backed securities and collateralized debt. Ultimately, the firewall was removed by a bipartisan bill that in final revision, passed in the 1999 Senate by a bipartisan 90-8-1 vote and in the House by an equally bipartisan vote of 362-57-15. President Bill Clinton signed the veto-proof bill into law and the commercial earnings and deposits of banks became available to securities trading and investment bankers. In a nutshell, commercial banks invested very heavily in mortgage-backed securities and other obligated debt, and when the building industry bubble burst, mortgage-backed securities failed in mass, crushed by the massive weight of unrecoverable mortgage debt. When homeowners in record numbers living well beyond their means on creative and variable-rate mortgage loans stopped paying their mortgages, the lending banks and mortgage houses that provided the doomed transactions via predator loans knocked huge, gaping holes in the stock market and crippled our banking system with debt.

Today, many of the same politicians who voted to do away with the firewall between investment securities and commercial banking are dealing with the 700-billion-dollar bail out that would hide the incredible loses behind government loans, or additional deficit spending if you prefer. Either way, you pay….

Why did congress and Clinton pull the plug on regulations?
It is not my intention to force any reader’s eyelids to close so tight that eye drops must be utilized to separate them. Nonetheless, as consistent with my column, which is designed to inform, evoke and provoke meaningful conversation, I have included the principle arguments for and against preservation of Glass-Steagall as framed by 1987 congressional research and published by Wikipedia the free on-line Encyclopedia.
http://www.examiner.com/x-852-Atlanta-Civics-Examiner
The argument for preserving Glass-Steagall (as written in 1987):
1. Conflicts of interest characterize the granting of credit – lending – and the use of credit – investing – by the same entity, which led to abuses that originally produced the Act
2. Depository institutions possess enormous financial power, by virtue of their control of other people’s money; its extent must be limited to ensure soundness and competition in the market for funds, whether loans or investments.
3. Securities activities can be risky, leading to enormous losses. Such losses could threaten the integrity of deposits. In turn, the Government insures deposits and could be required to pay large sums if depository institutions were to collapse as the result of securities losses.
4. Depository institutions are supposed to be managed to limit risk. Their managers thus may not be conditioned to operate prudently in more speculative securities businesses. An example is the crash of real estate investment trusts sponsored by bank holding companies (in the 1970s and 1980s).
The argument against preserving the Act (as written in 1987):
1. Depository institutions will now operate in “deregulated” financial markets in which distinctions between loans, securities, and deposits are not well drawn. They are losing market shares to securities firms that are not so strictly regulated, and to foreign financial institutions operating without much restriction from the Act.
2. Conflicts of interest can be prevented by enforcing legislation against them, and by separating the lending and credit functions through forming distinctly separate subsidiaries of financial firms.
3. The securities activities that depository institutions are seeking are both low-risk by their very nature, and would reduce the total risk of organizations offering them – by diversification.
4. In much of the rest of the world, depository institutions operate simultaneously and successfully in both banking and securities markets. Lessons learned from their experience can be applied to our national financial structure and regulation.[13]

Posted by: larry clifton | September 25, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

The original "Maverick" was a Texas rancher...

Etymology of the word "Maverick":
"Samuel A. Maverick was a Texan rancher of the 1840’s who did not bother to brand his calves (which was an important practice followed by the community). At first the word Maverick was only used for unbranded Calves then the meaning was extended to apply one who doesn’t follow the common herd , somebody different and a little far from the crowd of rule followers."

Just what we need in this regulation crisis: someone who's not interested in following rules.

Posted by: defjoy | September 25, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

I think McCain is using this as a means to get Obama to the Whitehouse, there the drones will put something in Obama's water, just like the Russian's did the the Ukrainian president. My advice to Obama is DON'T DRINK the WATER, or EAT the SOUP, or anything. In fact if you see Cheney, run the other way. Its a big fat trap. And at the very least, they want to steal the limelight.

Avoid those scalliwags and polliwogs. They're no good. And the bail-out stinks to high heaven too. $700 billion is the going away gift for Bush and his Cronies for such a good job they've done. Ha! Do we really need to reward them again after Iraq? That would be letting them finish the job, and throwing the American people on a sword.

Posted by: electrolidfury | September 25, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Let's remember back to the Cuban Missile Crisis. Kennedy, like Obama, was deliberative. Curtis LeMay wanted to launch nukes. Kennedy opted to give back-channel diplomacy a chance, first. And, we're all still here writing and reading because of Kennedy's coolheadedness. In this crisis, I don't think Obama is guilty of "analysis paralysis." Rather, I think he's hoping we'll get it right the first time. I'm not sure in this case that, like Kennedy's crisis, we have the luxury of a second chance. The results will reverberate for a very long time.

Posted by: rob15 | September 25, 2008 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Mr. McCain and Mr. Obama are running for presidency and are not playing a game of Black Jack. The debates are part of our democratic process. The debates are for the American people. Honor the debates. If necessary, change the subject to the economy and inform the American people. Nothing prevents Mr. McCain to fly to a 2hr debate on Friday or to be hooked in by satellite for the debate. If he cannot do more than one thing at a time- something every president does even in times of crisis- he should drop his handlers and get nurse aides.
Mr. McCain is gaming the American public. He is gaming me and is dishonoring the presidency.

Mr. McCain is in his second childhood and may be disintegrating before our eyes in terms of his moral compass, mental acuity, and physical demeanor. I fear for our country if this impetuous, childish, and dishonorable man becomes the next president after 8 yrs of disaster. He has already shown his willingness to lie and cheat and pick an unqualified VP. Mr. McCain does not care about the average American. This multimillionaire is a servant of the Wallstreet elite and robber barons and has brownnosed himself in support of deregulation to the detriment of our country. How can a man such as this be a smart, honorable, and cool leader in the face of national crises?

Posted by: lucy2008 | September 25, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

To think that Congress and the Senate are not able to function without either of these two is BS if you ask me. I could understand if either of them were President at this very moment...but they are nothing more that Senators at this moment. McCain just wants to be there so he can take more credit than he deserves for the bills being passed. It's just a photo op for them....McCain in particular.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Hey idiots that hit the 'submit' button multiple times.

Stop it!

Posted by: The Hammer | September 25, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

the MBA style of Bush...the brashness of McCain or... the cool and reserved style of Obama!

why do I feel like the writer is slanted a little?

Posted by: dave | September 25, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

Wow... this country is doomed. Are you people serious? You would prefer a hands-off leader? Obama is doing NOTHING about the financial crisis. Obama is all talk, no action (check his record). Do you realize we're on the brink of a depression? Talk to the elders in your family - They'll tell you what it's like (hint: not fun). Something needs to be done NOW. Bickering in Washington won't solve anything. Getting some leadership there will lead to a solution.

I was undecided... until this week. I'm voting McCain. A Leader.

God Bless America.

Posted by: BrianK | September 25, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

It appears to me that senator Obama is only concerned about his campaign. While McCain is trying to help solve this issue immediately and not just focused on his campaign. Only my opinon.

Posted by: Megadeth | September 25, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

"I'll try to find some, and I'll bring 'em to ya!"

Posted by: Bud | September 25, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Fool us once shame on you, fool us twice shame on Us. The American people should not and hopefully will not be fooled by John Mccain using yet another crisis for political gain. He went for a hail mary to try and save his campaign, after it started tanking in the polls. The congress did not need him to go to Washington to save the day, the deal was already making progress and ready to be completed. He makes it out like he is going to be some savior, when in reality he does not even sit on the Senate committee responsible for this Bill. He is just trying to play politics, dont be fooled twice.

Posted by: David | September 25, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

A SILENT COUP? DOES NAIVETE OBSCURE WHAT'S OVER THE HORIZON?

The real question is who is working the strings on the McCain-Palin marionette.

McCain is not his own man these days. The one-eighty he displayed with his vice presidential selection tells the tale. Look at John McCain's eyes. They are very red and glassy. Something is not right.

The current financial "crisis" conjures up memories of the Reichstag fire, "Remember the Maine," the Gulf of Tonkin, and "weapons of mass destruction." This is a manufactured crisis, a manifestation of a long-term strategy aimed at imposing autocratic dominance upon the supposedly co-equal branches of federal government.

The "suspension" of the McCain-Palin campaign could be just the initial salvo in an assault upon the American political system. What's next? A manipulated market crash? Suspension of the presidential election? Imposition of martial law?

Don't laugh. The plans are in place; the executive orders have been signed. The FEMA camps are ready to receive the "dissenters."

Think it can't happen in America? Consider THIS:

TARGETING OF AMERICANS BY GOV'T AGENCIES
A ROOT CAUSE OF WALL STREET MELTDOWN?

Once again, Congress is being asked to rush through emergency legislation -- to cede effective control of the economy to the government.

Officials continue to blame lax lending policies on the part of the mortgage industry for spawning this crisis.

But were lenders ORDERED to offer "easy credit" to people "targeted" by government agencies?

Is government "targeting" of American citizens a root cause of the mortgage meltdown that spawned the broader financial crisis?

For more, see:

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/targeting-u-s-citizens-govt-agencies-root-cause-wall-street-financial-crisis OR
members.nowpublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener | September 25, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Please, please please don't call Bush's style an "MBA Style". He does not lead like an MBA. He leads like a moron. Don't make us MBA's look bad with this kind of comparison. This is NOT MBA style. MBA style is smart, analytic, connected and rational. Bush has never been any of these things.

Posted by: BushNotMBAStyle | September 25, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Please, please please don't call Bush's style an "MBA Style". He does not lead like an MBA. He leads like a moron. Don't make us MBA's look bad with this kind of comparison. This is NOT MBA style. MBA style is smart, analytic, connected and rational. Bush has never been any of these things.

Posted by: BushNotMBAStyle | September 25, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

" I am also somewhat concerned about Obama in that he has not really taken too strong of a position on this crisis, and it is a crisis. "

As Mr Balz reports, the two candidates have taken very similar positions on how the pending legislation should look in order to address the crisis. The difference is that Senator McCain has moved, in barely a week's time, from "the fundamentals of the economy are strong" to "this is a critical threat that requires suspension of the campaign." He's more of a rollercoaster than the stock market these days.

Posted by: bsimon | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Please vote McCain so we dont have to worry about our country anymore.

http://www.FastArizona.com/McCain.html

Posted by: McCain | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Please vote McCain so we dont have to worry about our country anymore.

http://www.FastArizona.com/McCain.html

Posted by: McCain | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Please vote McCain so we dont have to worry about our country anymore.

http://www.FastArizona.com/McCain.html

Posted by: McCain | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

A SILENT COUP? DOES NAIVETE OBSCURE WHAT'S OVER THE HORIZON?

The real question is who is working the strings on the McCain-Palin marionette.

McCain is not his own man these days. The one-eighty he displayed with his vice presidential selection tells the tale. Look at John McCain's eyes. They are very red and glassy. Something is not right.

The current financial "crisis" conjures up memories of the Reichstag fire, "Remember the Maine," the Gulf of Tonkin, and "weapons of mass destruction." This is a manufactured crisis, a manifestation of a long-term strategy aimed at imposing autocratic dominance upon the supposedly co-equal branches of federal government.

The "suspension" of the McCain-Palin campaign could be just the initial salvo in an assault upon the American political system. What's next? A manipulated market crash? Suspension of the presidential election? Imposition of martial law?

Don't laugh. The plans are in place; the executive orders have been signed. The FEMA camps are ready to receive the "dissenters."

Think it can't happen in America? Consider THIS:

TARGETING OF AMERICANS BY GOV'T AGENCIES
A ROOT CAUSE OF WALL STREET MELTDOWN?

Once again, Congress is being asked to rush through emergency legislation -- to cede effective control of the economy to the government.

Officials continue to blame lax lending policies on the part of the mortgage industry for spawning this crisis.

But were lenders ORDERED to offer "easy credit" to people "targeted" by government agencies?

Is government "targeting" of American citizens a root cause of the mortgage meltdown that spawned the broader financial crisis?

For more, see:

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/targeting-u-s-citizens-govt-agencies-root-cause-wall-street-financial-crisis OR
members.nowpublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Hey people. Look up Dave Ramsey's fix for the crisis at his website. It costs only $40 Billion, a 95% savings over $700 Billion. Write your representatives now! If you're in a dufus place like California, that's useless. Just vote the current CA reps out of office because they only respond to special interest groups, not the voters.

Posted by: TL | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Let's remember back to the Cuban Missile Crisis. Kennedy, like Obama, was not given to knee-jerk reactions. Curtis LeMay was ready to launch nukes. Kennedy was willing to wait for the back-channel diplomacy to have a chance. In the end, we're all still here to allow me to write this comment because of Kennedy's deliberation and cool headedness. There is a lesson to be learned here. Obama knows that whatever approach we take to the current crisis, it will have long-term impacts. I don't see it as a case of "analysis paralysis." Rather, it is a case of trying to get it right the first time. I'm not sure we have a second chance in this case, either.

Posted by: Abarafi | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Though he says he does not want to make the bailout political, McCain is doing just that by going to Washington. He does not belong to any of the committees that are negotiating the deal, so he cannot attend. He is just taking the campaign media with him, which the bailout does not need. They need to focus and McCain just added more chaos to a critical situation. Obama has got it right by being in touch by phone but not taking the campaign hoopla to Washington.

Posted by: Butters | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

We pay $160.000.00 a year to senators. It's time for them to do what they hire to do. McCain did a right thing, while Obama didn't. Tell me if you can tell your boss that if he needs you he can call, so you will show up, while still collecting your pay check. I don't think you can keep that job for a long time.

Posted by: Phillip | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Once again Obama is voting present. The president needs to be decisive,like McCain. Three years ago, McCain tried to reign in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Meanwhile, Obama was taking campaign contributions from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Posted by: Sam | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Its going to take brains to get our country back in shape,that leaves out republicans completely!!
I mean really,Bush-McCain,McCain-Bush,just because you have a differant name doesnt mean your ideology and political views are differant.A rotten apple, is a rotten apple!A republican, is a republican!!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Once again Obama is voting present. The president needs to be decisive,like McCain. Three years ago, McCain tried to reign in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Meanwhile, Obama was taking campaign contributions from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Posted by: Sam | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

We pay $160.000.00 a year to senators. It's time for them to do what they hire to do. McCain did a right thing, while Obama didn't. Tell me if you can tell your boss that if he needs you he can call, so you will show up, while still collecting your pay check. I don't think you can keep that job for a long time.

Posted by: Phillip | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

We pay $160.000.00 a year to senators. It's time for them to do what they hire to do. McCain did a right thing, while Obama didn't. Tell me if you can tell your boss that if he needs you he can call, so you will show up, while still collecting your pay check. I don't think you can keep that job for a long time.

Posted by: Phillip | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

We pay $160.000.00 a year to senators. It's time for them to do what they hire to do. McCain did a right thing, while Obama didn't. Tell me if you can tell your boss that if he needs you he can call, so you will show up, while still collecting your pay check. I don't think you can keep that job for a long time.

Posted by: Phillip | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

We pay $160.000.00 a year to senators. It's time for them to do what they were hire to do. McCain did a right thing, while Obama didn't. Tell me if you can tell your boss that if he needs you he can call, so you will show up, while still collecting your pay check. I don't think you can keep that job for a long time.

Posted by: Phillip | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

I think neither of them offered anything of value. They should have had their support team working overtime to come up with better ideas, and to comfort the people of this nation. They are in no position to do anything regarding the bailout, they are not the decision makers right now. I think both of them need a beeotch slap to wake them up.

Posted by: The Hammer | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Please proofread.

Posted by: English Speaker | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

A few thoughts:

1. Bush's style is not really high-level MBA work.

He isn't really delegating this problem so much as he is dumping the problem on a subordinate (there's a difference).

Given Bush's track record though, absent leadership might not be the worst of all worlds.

2. As far as McCain and Obama's actions go too, I'd say that the best evidence of leadership styles is in how they've managed their campaigns over the course of this election cycle. The process (or lack of process) that went into a Vice Presidential selection is an even better measure of how these candidates approach executive decisions.

Neither McCain nor Obama are on the main Senate committees dealing with this issue -- neither is a key negotiator in this deal. Neither is president yet either. If we're looking for clues about leadership styles in an executive role, look at the VP selection process, or the management of campaign activities (e.g. look at areas where executive discretion and authority exist).

3. As far as the debate issue goes, I mean come on. An agreement was signed and worked out. If one of the candidates had a health emergency, I think most people would understand welching on the agreement. But bailing out and finding some transparently b.s. excuse just because a candidate isn't prepared?

That's what McCain is doing, and I think most people realize that what he's doing is complete bullsh-t.

Posted by: JP2 | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Please, please please don't call Bush's style an "MBA Style". He does not lead like an MBA. He leads like a moron. Don't make us MBA's look bad with this kind of comparison. This is NOT MBA style. MBA style is smart, analytic, connected and rational. Bush has never been any of these things.

Posted by: Bush Not MBA Style | September 25, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Obama's not taking a side? Nooooo. He's never done that before.

Perhaps he's staying out of this issue (just like every other controversial vote he's avoided or otherwise abstained from). Of course, just as in the past, this course allows him to watch what happens and then "Monday morning quarterback." Of course, because by then it's all said and done, and because he did not have to take a side, he can take either side. Hindsight is, after all, 20/20.

By the way, this is the same kind of crap you can expect if Obama is in office. Change my ass. He's just like every other politician since the beginning of time. And you can take that to the bank . . . just don't expect Obama's help.

Posted by: JD | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Please, please please don't call Bush's style an "MBA Style". He does not lead like an MBA. He leads like a moron. Don't make us MBA's look bad with this kind of comparison. This is NOT MBA style. MBA style is smart, analytic, connected and rational. Bush has never been any of these things.

Posted by: Bush Not MBA Style | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

No one disputes that this is the biggest crisis of the economy since the great depression. Why would anyone question the importance of Senator McCain and Senator Obama being a voice in the decision making? I was wondering if it were such a crisis, why weren't they doing their jobs. I am glad Senator McCain has the foresight to step up and cancel a comedy show and go to Washington to help avert financial chaos. Sorry Dave Letterman if it messed up your ratings during sweeps!!

Posted by: charlieb | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Little Johnny is running around like a chicken with his head cut off. He needs a time-out so someone can write him a cue card. This Republican ticket is completely incompetent. I guess Little Johnny wants to now nuke the home owners who were victimized by the predatory lenders which He, Little Johnny, has been the proponent for and recipient of their pay-offs. Little un-American Johnny going to sell out the American public, just as he did his fellow servicemen….oh, that’s right, Obama is black, can’t have that. Instead we need a hack and right-wing ideologue who have as their only real policy the completion of the Rove-Cheney plan to completely destroy the middle class in this country. Lets’ move our finical markets to Dubai along with Haliburton.,,,that’s the ticket.

Posted by: Timmy Coffee | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

No one disputes that this is the biggest crisis of the economy since the great depression. Why would anyone question the importance of Senator McCain and Senator Obama being a voice in the decision making? I was wondering if it were such a crisis, why weren't they doing their jobs. I am glad Senator McCain has the foresight to step up and cancel a comedy show and go to Washington to help avert financial chaos. Sorry Dave Letterman if it messed up your ratings during sweeps!!

Posted by: charlieb | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Criminal behavior for using deceptive mortgage practices, has no jail time attached to the perpetrators.
Investment companies and Bush wants us to go into more national debt, to cover their once "profitable" failures because they can't continue making the billions they were making, before this crash. If we buy debt by going into debt, it adds up to much more than just a $700 Billion dollar debt we put ourselves in. Let me say this again...If we buy a mortgage that's -$100,000 and it's bad but, then we borrowed $100,000 to pay the finance company for the -$100,000 bad mortgage, we are now -$200,000 in the hole because we now own -$100,000 bad debt plus the -$100,000 we borrowed! The equation is: -$100,000 + -$100,000 = -$200,000!
So, Bush wants $700 Billion to buy $700 Billion in bad loans which puts us at $1.4 Trillion in the negative! So, why is this good for the economy? Saving the economy only saves the crooks that caused the problem in the first place.
We're losing jobs to other countries, our costs of food and gas is absurd, citizens are being made homeless by the thousands each day....I think the American Public has had enough of these well-orchestrated national disasters! Don't commit me or my kids, kids, kids, kids, kids, kids to the obligation of this debt! NO BAILOUT, DROWN IN YOUR GREED!

Posted by: Are You Kidding? | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Its going to take brains to get our country back in shape,that leaves out republicans completely!!
I mean really,Bush-McCain,McCain-Bush,just because you have a differant name doesnt mean your ideology and political views are differant.A rotten apple, is a rotten apple!A republican, is a republican!!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

No one disputes that this is the biggest crisis of the economy since the great depression. Why would anyone question the importance of Senator McCain and Senator Obama being a voice in the decision making? I was wondering if it were such a crisis, why weren't they doing their jobs. I am glad Senator McCain has the foresight to step up and cancel a comedy show and go to Washington to help avert financial chaos. Sorry Dave Letterman is it messed up your ratings during sweeps!!

Posted by: charlieb | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Criminal behavior for using deceptive mortgage practices, has no jail time attached to the perpetrators.

Investment companies and Bush wants us to go into more national debt, to cover their once "profitable" failures because they can't continue making the billions they were making, before this crash. If we buy debt by going into debt, it adds up to much more than just a $700 Billion dollar debt we put ourselves in. Let me say this again...If we buy a mortgage that's -$100,000 and it's bad but, then we borrowed $100,000 to pay the finance company for the -$100,000 bad mortgage, we are now -$200,000 in the hole because we now own -$100,000 bad debt plus the -$100,000 we borrowed! The equation is: -$100,000 + -$100,000 = -$200,000!

So, Bush wants $700 Billion to buy $700 Billion in bad loans which puts us at $1.4 Trillion in the negative! So, why is this good for the economy? Saving the economy only saves the crooks that caused the problem in the first place.

We're losing jobs to other countries, our costs of food and gas is absurd, citizens are being made homeless by the thousands each day....I think the American Public has had enough of these well-orchestrated national disasters! Don't commit me or my kids, kids, kids, kids, kids, kids to the obligation of this debt! NO BAILOUT, DROWN IN YOUR STUPIDITY!

Posted by: Hello Everyone | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Criminal behavior for using deceptive mortgage practices, has no jail time attached to the perpetrators.

Investment companies and Bush wants us to go into more national debt, to cover their once "profitable" failures because they can't continue making the billions they were making, before this crash. If we buy debt by going into debt, it adds up to much more than just a $700 Billion dollar debt we put ourselves in. Let me say this again...If we buy a mortgage that's -$100,000 and it's bad but, then we borrowed $100,000 to pay the finance company for the -$100,000 bad mortgage, we are now -$200,000 in the hole because we now own -$100,000 bad debt plus the -$100,000 we borrowed! The equation is: -$100,000 + -$100,000 = -$200,000!

So, Bush wants $700 Billion to buy $700 Billion in bad loans which puts us at $1.4 Trillion in the negative! So, why is this good for the economy? Saving the economy only saves the crooks that caused the problem in the first place.

We're losing jobs to other countries, our costs of food and gas is absurd, citizens are being made homeless by the thousands each day....I think the American Public has had enough of these well-orchestrated national disasters! Don't commit me or my kids, kids, kids, kids, kids, kids to the obligation of this debt! NO BAILOUT, DROWN IN YOUR GREED!

Posted by: Hello Everyone | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Presidency = executive - that means running the show, not sitting and observing. That can be reserved for college professors.

I'm not suggesting to take unilateral action - consult with advisors, etc. but you HAVE TO TAKE AN ACTIVE ROLE as president - that's your job.

Let's not forget that both, McCain and Obama also are elected lawmakers with active terms.

If either doesn't feel compelled getting involved because it won't affect their potential presidency, that's their right and a personal call. But don't the owe it to the constituency that got them to washington to pull their weight in this matter?

Posted by: rich bastard | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

America needs a steady cool head as president not a cowboy, now a drama queen like McCain, a normal, reasonable, consistent person..if you like hysteria vote for McCain, the stunt master...who can't handle doing two things at once...thinking of the economy and debating. I am like many people sick of these dramas in Washington and the crisis they produce for Main Street.

Posted by: enoughis enough | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Americans voters have to choice: Should we legislate limits on greed or not.

Posted by: mediahack | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

Its going to take brains to get our country back in shape,that leaves out republicans completely!!
I mean really,Bush-McCain,McCain-Bush,just because you have a differant name doesnt mean your ideology and political views are differant.A rotten apple, is a rotten apple!A republican, is a republican!!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

He's still making speeches, doing TV appearances, and running ads, and Palin's making campaign stops. What exactly has McCain suspended?

Posted by: croatoan | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

All you have to remember is what party got us in this mess? Which party can get us out of it? The latter is not the GOP........

Posted by: American First | September 25, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

hile I do not like McCain, I am also somewhat concerned about Obama in that he has not really taken too strong of a position on this crisis, and it is a crisis. One could argue that he does not want to make a wrong move with the White House on the line.

McCain is going all in!

---------

The fiction writing class is next door.

Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

While I do not like McCain, I am also somewhat concerned about Obama in that he has not really taken too strong of a position on this crisis, and it is a crisis. One could argue that he does not want to make a wrong move with the White House on the line.

McCain is going all in!

http://www.boppoll.com

Obama '08

Posted by: Cool? | September 25, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

John McCain is another example of reactionary/cowboy leadership that has gotten the U.S. in the current state of decline. He's not thinking about the American people. He's thinking about his political career. Shame on him for thinking that the American people could be so blind as to fall for it.

Posted by: TMJ | September 25, 2008 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Internet buzzes with rumours Biden will be replaced by Hillary as Obama's running mate, read more:

http://mccain08-hillary2012.blogspot.com/
---------------------

LOL.

well, buzz off.

It's a silly rumor and will never happen. Biden is the right person for the right job.

Obama will win without the Clinton's so-called help. Hillary will remain a great senator....as will McCain.


Posted by: McRumi | September 25, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

What Dan did not mention is that a deal will be done with or without McCain or Obama. These legislators know what it takes to get re-elected and is that not what most of them are in Washington to do? Oh yeah collect donations from lobbyists.

One other thing people might want to consider is the role lobbyists will play in the administration. Bush and McCain will look much more similar with that criterion.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

The black and white Manichean approach has been the hallmark of the Bush Presidency. Obviously, John McCain would do the same. Barack Obama wouldn't.

You choose.

Posted by: European_Elitist | September 25, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

So McCain joins the stampede to Washington to add his endorsement for running the US economy off a cliff.

Wow, what a maverick.

Nice to know who's tune you dance to.

Posted by: Yellerdog | September 25, 2008 11:40 AM | Report abuse

In this day and age of Satellite TV- why can't the debate venue be shifted to DC? That way we all win. McCain gets his "I am in Washington to fix stuff" and Obama gets the debate. I still don't understand how taking a few hours to have a serious debate is not important. In fact it is more important than pretending to come up with some magic fix that we all know does not exist.

Posted by: Flygal | September 25, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Internet buzzes with rumours Biden will be replaced by Hillary as Obama's running mate, read more:

http://mccain08-hillary2012.blogspot.com/

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Internet buzzes with rumours Biden will be replaced by Hillary as Obama's running mate, read more:

http://mccain08-hillary2012.blogspot.com/

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Internet buzzes with rumours Biden will be replaced by Hillary as Obama's running mate, read more:

http://mccain08-hillary2012.blogspot.com/

Posted by: Anonymous | September 25, 2008 11:37 AM | Report abuse

McCain's style will create crises were none exist. Obama's style will overt crises where one looms.


Posted by: david J | September 25, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

We need no longer a HOT HEAD in the White House.

Posted by: JC | September 25, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

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