In response to the Palin/McCain accusations that Barack Obama is a terrorist,* there is now a documentary called “Keatining Economics: Johh McCain and the Making of a Financial Crisis.
Below is a short preview. The full documentary will be available at 12 noon today (October 6).
Here is a summary of the documentary:
‘The current economic crisis demands that we understand John McCain’s attitudes about economic oversight and corporate influence in federal regulation. Nothing illustrates the danger of his approach more clearly than his central role in the savings and loan scandal of the late ’80s and early ’90s.
John McCain was accused of improperly aiding his political patron, Charles Keating, chairman of the Lincoln Savings and Loan Association. The bipartisan Senate Ethics Committee launched investigations and formally reprimanded Senator McCain for his role in the scandal — the first such Senator to receive a major party nomination for president.
At the heart of the scandal was Keating’s Lincoln Savings and Loan Association, which took advantage of deregulation in the 1980s to make risky investments with its depositors’ money. McCain intervened on behalf of Charles Keating with federal regulators tasked with preventing banking fraud, and championed legislation to delay regulation of the savings and loan industry — actions that allowed Keating to continue his fraud at an incredible cost to taxpayers.
When the savings and loan industry collapsed, Keating’s failed company put taxpayers on the hook for $3.4 billion and more than 20,000 Americans lost their savings. John McCain was reprimanded by the bipartisan Senate Ethics Committee, but the ultimate cost of the crisis to American taxpayers reached more than $120 billion.
The Keating scandal is eerily similar to today’s credit crisis, where a lack of regulation and cozy relationships between the financial industry and Congress has allowed banks to make risky loans and profit by bending the rules. And in both cases, John McCain’s judgment and values have placed him on the wrong side of history.
Is this a mistake for Obama? Is Obama just playing the dirty campaign game like McCain and Palin are? No. The terrorist accusations by McCain and Palin are utterly false and absurd. McCain’s link to the financial crisis, to Keating, etc. are real. This difference … one thing being fabricated, one thing being real, does matter.
*You may suggest that I’m going overboard saying that Palin/McCain have specifically called Obama a terrorist, and that instead, they are just talking about ‘judgement’ and so on. You would be wrong. Palin and McCain will probably stick to the ‘judgment’ accusation on the stump (though “palling around with terrorists” is not exactly a mild accusation) but you must realize that this public campaign event is coordinated with an extensive mail and email campaign in which the link is being made explicitly. This is nothing other than the “Obama trained to be a terrorist in Kenya” memes (and others) which have been created and promoted by the Right Wing moving more onto the mainstream stage. It is NOT OK to assume that McCain and Palin and their campaign are not involved in this.