Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Learning about Phil Gramm

I haven't paid much attention to Phil Gramm since I saw him a few years back, so out-of-place at the old Black Cat (his son's band was playing). And once he left the Senate, I really didn't care what he was up to...Now that he's McCain's campaign co-chair and his top economic advisor, I'm glad someone has been keeping track! Read this whole post by Robert Scheer (it's not long):

The bookends of the Bush years are the Enron debacle and the federal bailout of bankers drunk on their own greed. And no two people in this country are more responsible for enabling this sordid behavior than the power couple Phil and Wendy Gramm.

Enron, lest we forget, was their baby. Then-Sen. Gramm sponsored the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000, which allowed Enron's scamming to happen. As Ken Lay, who was chair of Gramm's election finance committee, put it quite candidly when asked for the secret of Enron's success, "basically, we are entering or in markets that are deregulating or have recently deregulated."

Part of that deregulation involved rulings of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, then chaired by Wendy Gramm, who upon retiring from that post became a highly compensated member of the Enron board of directors, serving for eight years. She even was on the board's audit committee during the time of the corporation's despicable financial shenanigans. While on the Enron board, Wendy Gramm also chaired an anti-regulatory think tank that received funding from Enron and other corporations that benefited directly from the policies her institute espoused.

Not someone I'd even invite to a BBQ...

UPDATE: Even more writings about Phil Gramm today. He tried to invest in porn films? Wow.

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