Monday, Sept. 15, the world’s financial markets were staggered by the meltdown of two more huge investment banks in the United States.
Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy and Merrill-Lynch was bought out by the Bank of America.
The fate of both institutions was entirely predictable: they were brought down by the sub-prime mortgage loan collapse––the same problem that brought a less-than-honorable-end to Bear Stearns earlier this year.
The Dow-Jones Industrial Average dropped some 500 points on the heels of the news, and world stock markets followed suit. [Ed. Note: Sept. 18, back up to 410.03, or 3.86 percent. Are things volatile, or what?]
The stock markets weren’t the only victims of the crash. The John McCain quest for the presidency all but came to a screeching and permanent halt, too.
Continuing the illegal war and occupation of Iraq was already stale for the hapless McCain.
He then ginned up his poll numbers at the Republican National Convention, when he debuted his VP pick, Sarah Palin.
In the days following the convention, he boosted his crowd numbers by having Ms. Palin appear with him. However, once they went their own ways, McCain again had trouble gathering a couple hundred people to hear him speak. (Ms. Palin still could attract a large crowd, even though no one expected her to say much. So far, she hasn’t exceeded anyone’s expectations.)
Barack Obama has been warning of a financial breakdown for nearly a year, citing the fraudulent mortgage-lender industry over the past eight years and the wholesale deregulation of the financial industry over the past 20 years or so.
But the news of Sept. 15 left McCain completely exposed as an old geezer who “can’t pour piss out of a boot if the directions are on the heel,” to quote President Lyndon B. Johnson. That’s crude, but apt.
As the news spread about the United States-led disaster in the financial markets, McCain spoke from his heart (or maybe it was out of a less gracious part of his anatomy) saying the U. S. economy is “fundamentally sound.”
That same day, his campaign put out a press release saying the economy is in crisis.
The McCain crowd cannot even get its stories straight––the smarter side of the bunch at least recognized that something was amiss, but the old geezer proved he really does not have the remotest idea about economics.
“Fundamentally sound economy,” is what McCain blubbered about. Then he was trotted out on Tuesday to “clarify” what he meant: it seems he meant that “American workers are fundamentally sound.”
Yeah, sure, that’s what he meant, wink, wink.
Yes, Monday, Sept. 15, was the day the Straight Talk Express was driven into a ditch by the old Republican warhorse and the wheels fell off, never to be repaired.