John McCain’s banker problem

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John McCain’s campaign is in dire straits, nevermind the serious campaigning has just started. He has lost numerous advisors, two pastors and a campaign strategist, who wouldn’t take part in the upcoming campaign against Obama. Poll numbers show an Obama bump, not as dramatic as the latest Newsweek poll suggests, but a steady increase in approval for Barack Obama, as seen in the polls provided by RCP.

Admittedly short of knowledge when it comes to economics McCain turned to Phil Gramm the former Texas Senator. Gramm is the kind of economist Republicans profess to love most, budget balancing and anti government-spending and supply-side oriented. But Gramm is vice chairman of and a lobbyist for the Zurich based UBS (United Bank of Switzerland), too. The UBS is a major casualty of the subprime mortgage crisis and Gramm has lobbied on behalf of the bank to avoid stronger regulation and federal action in the mortgage crisis.

There is more. In Florida UBS banker Bradley Birkenfeld has been arrested on allegations of having helped UBS customers in the US committing tax fraud, by funnelling money into Liechtstein. Initially refusing to cooperate, Birkenfeld caved in last week and pleaded guilty. The US asks the UBS to release bank details of 20’000 US customers. This has led to a sense of panic not only within the bank and among America’s rich, but in Switzerland, too, which sees its famed banking secrecy in jeopardy and sent a delegation of government officials to the US. To no avail. Now FBI agents will “assist” Swiss authorities in their research into the alleged tax fraud.

You can find this and some more, namely Gramm’s connection to Enron, here.

A worthy advisor for a Republican candidate indeed.


133 thoughts on “John McCain’s banker problem

  1. db,
    In case you wondered, those lady bugs are producing Aphid Lions
    . About the ugliest larvae in the insect kingdom, but they do do a job on aphids.

  2. Countdown did a special report about McCain’s economic adviser Phil Gramm, who has worked very hard to de-regulate the banking and financial services industries and bring about the conditions which have led to the very mortgage crisis we have today. Oh, and his wife profited nicely when Gramm got the Enron Loophole passed into law. This loophole is what allows speculators to drive the price of future oil purchases up. Closing this loophole (which was passed by Congress, but I don’t know if Bush has signed it yet, nor if he accompanied such signing with a signing statement saying he wouldn’t enforce it) would bring gas prices down about 50%, or, about where they were when this whole bullshit started.

    yes, the man responsible for high gas prices and a sub-prime mortgage lending crisis is John McCain’s “economic adviser”. And we know he needs one because he has often told us he knows little or nothing about economics. Too bad he’s listening to his personal friends and not trustworthy sources.

  3. Well, those ladybugs can hump on my roses anyday, assuming I had roses… Heh.

  4. Here’s hoping some intrepid journalist can tie Birkie and Grams to gramps McIIIrd and toss em all overboard.

  5. Walt, I was considering putting in carpet roses on the south side of the house, but at $20.00 a starter, they were just a tad pricey.
    Plus, I don’t know shit about roses, and I understand they need lots of tlc. I only gots thc.

  6. RUC,
    Have you filled your tank lately? At current prices, a heart transplant is about equal to a tank full. It is time to smell the roses as in the near future you may never smell gas fumes!

  7. So did he sneak up on her or what? It sort of writes itself…Usually I just need a ride home!

  8. I just noticed something from the McCain pic….

    Those wrinkles are older than I am. And that turkey neck certainly doesn’t help his image against the younger and handsomer Obama.

  9. Wait a minute, you must have me confused with Carrie Nation or the like.
    My stuff has been worse than most of yours….

    …what a trollop I was, eh?


  10. Does anyone here know how to change a disc property to burn to a CD-R?
    I’ve copied and ‘ripped’ a bunch of CD’s, but they won’t burn to said CD-R cd I bought.

  11. Heh. The mind pictures abound…

    I had a snappy rebuttal to that, but apparently the site didn’t want it posted.

  12. man, it doesn’t take long for a thread to degenerate, or regenerate, as the case may be.

    EV, thanks for the post. wow, just frikkin wow.

    it doesn’t stop with the uber rich, does it.

  13. when I look at McCain’s face in that pic, I think, man, they must have used grainy film. But then I realize it isn’t the film…

  14. The more I think about it, the more I wonder if he was just minding his business and she backed into him…

  15. You’re right, Zooey.

    When one is young and rebellious (not that I know anything about this) they think the way to go is young and beautiful. (ala Marilyn Monroe or James Dean)

    Then you mature and think, “I want to be a corpse ravaged by the effects of time.”

    Funny how thoughts change.

  16. Never, Zooey.

    I’ve never met you, but to me you are ‘timeless’.

    (Cue “Ahhhhhhh!” response.)

  17. Hey Zooey, The movie you watched last night wasn’t Harold and Maude was it? Hotness is timeless…

  18. I said you were timeless.

    When did *you* last jump an 80 y.o.’s bones, hmmm?

  19. Oh, and his wife profited nicely when Gramm got the Enron Loophole passed into law. This loophole is what allows speculators to drive the price of future oil purchases up

    Wayne – It is so obvious that the price of oil is being controlled by speculators. How else could they predict “$5.00/gallon”. It is the speculators that are purchasing and hording oil which is creating an artificial oil shortage. The same thing is happening with wheat. The farmers in the Midwest are growing more wheat then ever, yet there is a shortage of wheat in the third world markets.

  20. Hey Z….I’m closing in on the over 55 discounts….I’m thinking…bring it on :)~

  21. So I guess it would be better to have to remind them I qualify for the discount and then have them card me to make sure? :)~

  22. I have been carded twice in the last year, but then my grandfather had deep black hair when he passed away at 96 and I sport a crew.

  23. I hand them my AARP card and they turn it over, then hold it up to the light, and ask me suspiciously “Where did you get this?”

  24. I doubt this will help but I also know you are a straight A student.

    “You’re beautiful. Let’s have sex.”

  25. db’
    Z missed her A in math because she spent too much time in the meth lab. She has spurned two offers from me, so you might turn as well off the porch light.

  26. last hint… the year was 1976 I think…

    “Fish, and plankton. And sea greens, and protein from the sea. It’s all here, ready. Fresh as harvest day. Fish and sea greens, plankton and protein from the sea. And then it stopped coming. And they came instead. So I store them here. I’m ready. And you’re ready. It’s my job. To freeze you. Protein, plankton… “

  27. None of you are making any sense. Not that that’s a bad thing. 🙂

    Anyway the media can’t pay any attention to this because they’re all too busy talking about how Obama isn’t taking public financing. Like that really affects our lives.

  28. trueblue, I just met Zooey and she is ageless. Except that I think her age is doing something to her math skills.

  29. My sister, a very non-political person who lives in North Carolina just forwarded me a message from Greenpeace to prevent coastal drilling for oil. Way to go rethugs, get the apathetic motivated. Woohoo.

  30. P.A. System: Capricorn 15’s. Born 2244. Enter the Carousel. This is the time of renewal.
    [Crowd applauds]
    P.A. System: Be strong and you will be renewed. Identify.

    If this doesn’t give it away, nothing will

  31. Z,
    That means that I was a freshman in college when you were born. That makes me feel like a trilobite.

  32. I haven’t seen either of them. And what does Soylent Green is people mean? No wonder I never kn0w what anybody is talking about here.

    Logan’s Run, 1976, nominated for two Oscars. Soylent Green, none.

  33. Indeed Raven. So you all take the discount and appreciate the fact that we are letting you live if you know what I mean…

    “Is that the look of old?”

  34. I’m too lazy to rent movies anymore. If they’re not on On Demand it’s like work.

  35. Periodically I walk into the school cafeteria and yell “Soylent Green is people”. The students have sort of gotten used to it.

    No one over 30 Zooey!!

  36. I’m still in New Mexico, we are in severity mode, 12 to 14 hour days, mostly sitting around waiting…
    Two small fires last week, 100 acres or so.
    When the district is in fire season, the crew stays close to home. The monsoon rains in a few weeks will free us up to go elsewhere.
    We camped at Ojo Caliente in Monticello Canyon this week, the birthplace of Victorio, one of the last Apache chiefs. There is a beautiful warm spring that flows up out of a side canyon, turning the canyon into a verdant paradise of lush greenery in the midst of the sere brown rock walls.
    It was a wonderful treat to soak in the water worn bedrock flumes.
    I saw my first flock of blue grosbeaks!

  37. Yeesh, we don’t even eat old cows or chickens but we’re going to eat old people instead of fresh one. Gross.

  38. Raven,
    I have seen that bird maybe 4 times at best. I suppose next you will mentione painted and or Lazuli bunting

  39. Heh, both trips through the canyon I viewed from the back seat of a crew cab as we jounced full bore on our way to first one fire below the canyon, and then raced back through two days later to the second fire.

    We got to the campsite by the spring at dark. The next morning I got up before dawn, soaked in the spring, and waited for enough light to take pictures.
    Only to realize that the memory card to the camera was still plugged into the computer back home… heh…

  40. Raven,
    That is good to know! The folks in So. Cal. are in quite a tizzy. At least you get some respite from the current situation. I was in south Jersey in the early 60’s when all hell broke out in a drought. Made me respect the whims of nature and mankind.

  41. Lazuli bunting was my first guess, dbadass, not having a book with me. When I got home I found them to have been the grosbeaks…
    Maybe next trip…

  42. I lived in CA (again) about 20 years ago, and one year it seemed like the whole state was burning. It was horrendous.

  43. Raven,
    But my Sister and Brother live in San Bernardino and San Diego. I get all of my news from there.

  44. I guess I tend to focus on the northern end of the state, where I am more likely to be detailed…
    I’ve been to SoCal once on a fire, and it is rough, very rough….

  45. I lived 10 miles north of Redding for a couple years, while I put the ex through school. A little town called Central Valley — heard of it?

  46. At the risk of turning this into “that’s So Raven”, I am sort of curious how you went from small print shop to wild fire fighter. I hope not to being prying…

  47. Well if we didn’t know you had young daughters before db we’d know now! 🙂

  48. Lucky you! 😀

    It’s a ratty little town near Shasta Lake, literally at the northern tip of the Central Valley — hence the name. Manzanita hell.

  49. Raven,
    When I was shortly married to my spouse, we visited my parents in Redlands, CA. About twenty minutes after we arrived at my parent’s house, there was a 5-6 magnitude quake in a local fault zone. The patio pool lost about a quarter of it’s water and every chair in the house with a rocker base started to sway.
    My spouse has never visited CA since.

  50. Shayne, This begs the question as to how you got the reference. Whereas my Logan’s Run lead feel flat, I am curious.

  51. Well I have a 13 year old daughter db. I’ve actually been to tapings of Disney shows.

  52. My favorite comedian, George Carlin passed away from a heart attack.Age 71….Blessing’s to him and his family.

  53. “WaltTheMan
    Z missed her A in math because she spent too much time in the meth lab. She has spurned two offers from me, so you might turn as well off the porch light.”

    I’m not proffering Zooey any offers until I’m confident she’ll say yes. Which I’m sure is any minute now :)~

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