Congress: “We have never heard language like this”

(8 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

Congressional Leaders Stunned by Warnings writes David M. Herszenhorn in the New York Times yesterday.

Or, as Chuck Schumer, Senator from New York State, put it, “When you listened to him (Fed chairman Ben Bernanke) describe it you gulped…History was sort of hanging over it, like this was a moment.

Ya think, Senator. Yeah. Like this is a moment.


As Senator Christopher J. Dodd, Democrat of Connecticut and chairman of the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, put it Friday morning on the ABC program “Good Morning America,” the congressional leaders were told “that we’re literally maybe days away from a complete meltdown of our financial system, with all the implications here at home and globally.”

Mr. Schumer added, “History was sort of hanging over it, like this was a moment.”

When Mr. Schumer described the meeting as “somber,” Mr. Dodd cut in. “Somber doesn’t begin to justify the words,” he said. “We have never heard language like this.”

What can be said, now? For all the analysis, the predictions, the doom and gloom, what do we do with this admission from those in Washington: We have never heard language like this

Seriously. I mean, if they are telling the truth, how disconnected from cause and effect are these people? How did they ever become US Senators, Congressmen/women, Presidents . . . how did WE citizens become so disengaged that we actually cast votes for these people?

Because we are back to Iraq, aren’t we Senators? Back to the lack of oversight, intellectual force, and due diligence that was required of our elected representative before anybody’s life was put on the line in Iraq. Before half a trillion dollars of tax payer money got trashed. And, let me be horrible for one minute. If this was a war for oil, what the hell have we gotten out of it? Even in their slime and greed, they are incompetent.

Our politicians have a lot to answer for. When US Senators say they are stunned at this financial markets crash, do they really think that protects them from liability? From responsibility?

Anybody reading Paul Krugman had a clue. Or the blogosphere…  And many of us were put on alert at the behavior of a rogue administration that was clearly pilfering the coffers of the United States government, its taxpayers, and pushing deregulation all to line BushCo pockets. This was perfectly clear. There are 1000s of diaries and essays and out-of-the-mainstream reporting on these things over at least two years.

If I could piece it together, then certainly Senators Dodd and Schumer, I expected you to do the same.

Let me conclude with this: the presidential race is not what we need to focus on, imo. It has become clear to me that the only way to stop this madness is to reassert states rights, create a third or fifth party (odd numbers to keep power off balance), and regain control of our local governments. Keep net neutrality and stay connected.

One last thing. We need to ask ourselves this very question:

And voters might well wonder why perhaps a half-trillion dollars – about the same amount spent so far in Iraq – is suddenly available to help Wall Street when promises to address issues like health care insurance have gone largely unkept for years.


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    • pfiore8 on September 20, 2008 at 12:44
    • pfiore8 on September 20, 2008 at 12:47

    daily kos

  1. As long as we have a system where Congress folks have to spend just as much time raising money for the next election as talking with and for constituents we are going to be subject to duck fuckery like this from our representatives. They don’t really have any more grasp on the day to day struggles Americans are experiencing than the Bush cabal. Actually the Bush cabal does know how bad it is, they like it that way as will McCain if he gets elected.

    So of course they capitulate what else can they do? They don’t want to end up at food banks and living in tent cities like the people they purportedly serve. Gasp.  

    • RiaD on September 20, 2008 at 17:06

    this is it:

    And many of were us put on alert at the behavior of a rogue administration that was clearly pilfering the coffers of the United States government, its taxpayers, and pushing deregulation all to line BushCo pockets. This was perfectly clear.

    this WAS perfectly clear…even to me, (who doesn’t read newspapers or watch TV news or much read news on-line except here…)

    • RiaD on September 20, 2008 at 20:36

  2. …of the end of the WWII boom, America facing unpayable debt and promising to “work it off” — when there’s no possible way for that to happen.  It’s so brilliant and clever and downright rotten that it takes my breath away. I was also struck by the willingness of legislators to cave immediately to executive officials, the assumption of crisis and the idea that we can just “do something” — there’s nothing, of course, to understand, or measure, or think about — those boys sure know what they’re doin’.  Bless ’em.

    Brakes on the way to hell I can understand.  A good thing!  The person standing on tbe brakes saying it will all be OK…babbling about hell for a minute…then saying “it will all be ok”…eh.  Just makes me sick scared.

  3. …are all correct.   The question is:

    —How come we know more than they do?—

    I don’t think we actually do.  I’m so cynical now that I believe they know exactly what they are doing, and acting surprised is only part of the game.

    It was the same with Iraqi WMDs.  Most of us knew there either weren’t any or so small and feeble, they didn’t matter. We don’t have huge staffs of secretries, research assistants on various topics, person-power out the wazoo.  Yet we knew/know while those with all the huge staffs got/get it wrong.

    I don’t think so; I think they are just totally corrupt.

    After it was proved that Iraq had no WMDs, we realized they didn’t even have the ordianry wmd-s, weapons of minimal defense.  I phoned Biden & Feinstein at the time and told them they should send me their paychecks because I had better “intelligence” without a staff than they did with “staff”.

    • Valtin on September 22, 2008 at 07:18

    From my blog, and also posted as an essay at Docudharma:

    Here’s a short program to “fix” the economy: expropriate the banks and energy industries and nationalize them; no money for the rich owners of these industries who have ripped off the public for trillions. End the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and begin the process of military withdrawal from the countries that have a U.S. presence.

  4. from a comment at Asia Times Online from the “letters” page.

    After this week (following approval by Congress), the American people will bear the debt of its speculators and investment banks for generations, and the whole country will bear the debt of the world.

    President Bush and Henry Paulson may seem to have officially committed America to its death spiral in a universe that is adjusting itself rapidly to a “post-America” world. Sadly, the American people do not realize that their passivity and acquiesce, their indifference and disinterest, and their blind obedience to political and religious leaders and to the regulated and controlled American media, have finally destroyed what is left of the constitution, democracy and whatever else the government hasn’t already destroyed in the past eight years.

    Politically and socially, Americans are offered no political candidates of reason, common sense, or honesty … The American people have forfeited democracy in favor of a future variant of national socialism commanded by a military-transnational cartel. The world awaits its misdirected anger and revenge. Tragically but not surprisingly, Americans are witnessing one of the most significant and pivotal events in their country’s history and barely realize or understand it.

    Michael T Bucci

    Maine, USA

    Meanwhile the war escalates in Pakistan. Mariott Hotel truck bomb in Islamabad as US Military moves into the region.

    Approximately 20 kilometers from Islamabad lies Tarbella, the brigade headquarters of Pakistan’s Special Operation Task Force (SOTF). Recently, 300 American officials landed at this facility, with the official designation as a “training advisory group”, according to documents seen by Asia Times Online.

    However, high-level contacts claim this is not as simple as a training program.

    … Now, the US has bought a huge plot of land at Tarbella, several square kilometers, according to sources directly handling the project. Recently, 20 large containers arrived at the facility. They were handled by the Americans, who did not allow any Pakistani officials to inspect them.

    Given the size of the containers, it is believed they contain special arms and ammunition and even tanks and armored vehicles – and certainly have nothing to do with any training program.

    There is little doubt in the minds of those familiar with the American activities at Tarbella that preparations are being made for an all-out offensive in North-West Frontier Province against sanctuaries belonging to the Taliban and al-Qaeda led by bin Laden. Pakistani security sources maintain more American troops will arrive in the coming days.

    Asia Times

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