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With Airheads Like This Running Things, We're in Deep Trouble

Reported by Melanie - November 13, 2008 -

Eric M. Thorson, the Treasury Department Inspector General who is overseeing the $700 billion "rescue package" was quoted in the Washington Post this morning as saying the whole thing is "a mess." Neil Cavuto brought on Chris Cannon (R-UT), a member of the House Oversight Committee to explain today (November 13, 2008) and if Cannon is representative of those who are supposed to provide "oversight," we're in deep trouble.

UPDATED.

Cavuto introduced Cannon with: "$700 billion plus in bailout cash, now big questions today over who's keeping track of all of that cash. Your cash. A month and a half after congress approved it, who is watching it? Apparently no one. A report today that the oversight posts established by congress are still unfilled. Initial monitoring is overdue and the guy running the show in the meantime calls it a mess. But whose mess? Chris Cannon is a member of the House Oversight Committee. He voted for the bailout. Um, congressman, whose fault is this?"

Check out his answer. (It is extremely windy today where I am and my cable feed is periodically freezing up as a result. Please excuse the bleeps in this quote.)

Cannon: "Oh ah, this actually goes back a ways. It was interesting to listen to Barry Goldwater and Steny Hoyer [earlier guests] talk a little bit back and forth but one of the fundamental disagreements [bleep] Republicans when they took power decided to show by example [bleep] cut their budget [bleep] and as you remember, in 1996 we cut the budget. We didn't cut the rate of growth; we actually cut spending, huh, in that year.

[...]

"So what happened in 1995 when the Republicans took over is they fired their oversight staff. So, you know, I've heard numbers of two to four hundred people working for John Dingle when he was the chairman of the ah, Energy and Commerce Committee and today we probably have 20, 30 people altogether who are oversight folks in congress."

Seconds later Cavuto asked Cannon why he voted for the bailout if there was no oversight.

Gannon: "Well, there's no congressional oversight but thank heavens Neil, if I can blatantly suck up here for a moment, we have you! And ah, in fact, I love your program because you let reasonable people talk and develop their ideas and you let unreasonable people develop their ideas and when that happens you sometimes ask these puncturing, sort of thoughtful questions."

Cavuto thanked him for the complement but wondered whether it wouldn't be a "reasonable assumption" that "before the i's were dotted and the t's were crossed, there was someone looking at that?"

Cannon: "Well, there are people looking at it, in fairness. Hank Paulson has done, I think, a great job at what he's doing. ... Tell Steny Hoyer he needs more oversight staff. ... There is oversight because Paulson has been appealing to the public and he's done it in a very throughful way, I think."

Comment: What? This is unbelievable. One of the worst interviews and one of the most ignorant, airheaded interviewees I've ever seen. Really. Cannon is on par with this. I'm uploading to YouTube now and will post as soon as possible.

UPDATE - Here's the video (3:37 minutes):