Alas, This Is Not a Joke

Maxine Waters will be the senior Democrat on the House Financial Services Committee. As Megan McArdle points out, no one has or will ever accuse Waters of bringing too much intellectual candlepower to bear on a particular problem of state:

Maxine Waters reliably delivers the craziest questions and the most bizarre speeches on that committee, and tends to demonstrate a stunning lack of grasp of the committee’s core subject matter.  

The classic of the her oeuvre is, of course, the committee hearing on the financial crisis, in which eight heads of major financial institutions like Citi, State Street, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley were pretty ruthlessly grilled by members of Congress about how they had gotten the economy into the largest catastrophe since the Great Depression, and the greatest capital loss in history.  Here is Maxine Waters, who uses her time to ask the following questions:  

Did you raise your credit card interest rates or cut credit limits after you received TARP money?  Do you require people to be delinquent before you talk to them about modifying their mortgages?

(To Ken Lewis of Bank of America):  Have you offshored some of your loss mitigation specialists?  

Why did you pay yourself fees to accept TARP money?  

The last question might arguably be relevant except that when Ken Lewis answered “I have no idea what you’re talking about”, it became fairly clear that Maxine Waters didn’t either; she seemed unable to rephrase the question or explain further.  After an awkward moment where everyone, apparently including Maxine Waters, wondered what the hell Maxine Waters was trying to say, Vikram Pandit, the head of Citibank, had to offer a guess as to what she might be asking after: the underwriting fees that the banks had paid in order to issue some of the debt that they needed to boost their capital.  

 I invite you to contemplate the media derision that would have followed if a Republican with Waters’s gray-matter-resembling-thing and sparsity-of-neurons was asked by fellow Republicans to assume a similar responsibility.

  1. Israel P.

    It is a natural result of universal suffrage.  There is not much to do about that.

    What is not natural is making her a committee chairman.

  2. Keith Preston

    This from a woman who was let off the hook from several obvious ethics violation.  I guess stating that truth makes me a racist.

  3. John Davey

    As a Californian, I would like to believe that Mrs. Waters is an example of the extreme left end of our citizenry.

    Sadly, she is, in fact, darn close to the middle. Which says a lot about the current state of California. Start at ugly belligerence, and then turn it up a notch. Or twelve.

  4. liberal jim

    Waters is clearly not qualified, but you will have all other members of the committee of both parties acting as if she is.  Who is the real problem,  Waters or the other committee members?

  5. Jeff

    Unreal. She said this in 2008 to oil company executives appearing before Congress:

    Guess what this liberal would be all about?   This liberal would be about socializing … uh, umm.   … Would be about, basically, taking over, and the government running all of your companies.

    Yeah, that worked for Venezuela didn’t it? She’s an utter fool.

  6. No Caesar

    Shame on the GOP for not picking up this story, hounding her and talking over and over about her crazy ideas and corrupt background.  Throw in a good measure of how she is representative of the Dangerous Democrat party.  If she were on the other side the Dems would use every opportunity to demonize her.  We’ve got to street fight too.  For the forseeable future this nation’s future will be decided by low-information voters.  They react to a general background noise of fury and negative attacks.  If the current GOP leadership doesn’t want to sully themselves with this then they are the band playing Nearer My God to Thee as the Titanic goes down. 

  7. DocJay
    liberal jim: Waters is clearly not qualified, but you will have all other members of the committee of both parties acting as if she is.  Who is the real problem,  Waters or the other committee members? · 4 hours ago

    Both are the issue.  She is an evil mental midget on par with those curious if islands can tip over (as in Guam).

    Those who refuse to address her incompetence do so because she is black. 

  8. Goldgeller
    No Caesar: Shame on the GOP for not picking up this story, hounding her and talking over and over about her crazy ideas and corrupt background.  Throw in a good measure of how she is representative of the Dangerous Democrat party.  If she were on the other side the Dems would use every opportunity to demonize her.  We’ve got to street fight too.  For the forseeable future this nation’s future will be decided by low-information voters.  They react to a general background noise of fury and negative attacks.  If the current GOP leadership doesn’t want to sully themselves with this then they are the band playing Nearer My God to Thee as the Titanic goes down.  · 20 hours ago

    Edited 20 hours ago

    This is exactly right. But the GOP won’t do it cause Maxine Waters is a black woman. The last thing they want is to be seen going after two black women and a black president, so they’ll let this go down. 

    Maxine Waters… it’s crazy. But hey, “Republicans are ‘anti-science’” don’t you know? Therefore, everything the democrats do is okay. 

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