Watch CBSN Live

Column: McCain's 'crisis' Fails To Address Real Economic Woes

This story was written by , The Daily Athenaeum

Recently, I read about a television advertisement McCains campaign unveiled last week called Crisis.

In the ad, which might give anyone who saw Hillarys 3 a.m. call a case of dejavu, the commercial begins with, Our economy is in crisis. Only proven reformers John McCain and Sarah Palin can fix it. Tougher rules on Wall Street to protect your life savings.

I will not go on to describe the strong and serious, yet personable portrayal of the McCain-Palin ticket in the commercial or even the rest of it for that matter. The beginning alone has enough problematic material to adequately base a column around. Including more from McCains ad would just be unfair.

Lets start with the first sentence our economy is in crisis.

Due to the past and current news coverage of the bank corporations collapsing in a manner similar to dominoes and the stock market trends resemblance to a ski slope, this is not news.

But, thank you for the reminder. The economy is still in crisis, and the two Republican leaders apparently just found out.

For anyone who has paid attention to the value of the dollar in international markets or seen the Bush administration spend US taxpayers money like they were playing Monopoly on a world scale and trying to control other countries in place of Marvin Gardens and Boardwalk. Those in the lower and middle classes who have had to deal with the reality of a poor economy know the economy has been suffering.

It is the first sentence that is nothing other than a poorly disguised scare tactic. It gives voters a sense of urgency. A false impression is given that suddenly, somehow the economy abruptly failed. It is so nice of politicians to simplify things for voters who could not possibly understand the governments lax regulation of the market led to those banks taking on risks which were too large for them due to the potential promise of a large increase in profits if the loans were paid off.

I guess McCains staff thought it was easier to assume the public would only understand on an elementary level. Economy broke. McCain and Palin promise to fix. Ok got it. I think I understand.

But my next concern is how McCain plans to fix the economy. The ad cites that he and Palin are reformers who have previous proven experience with fighting corruption. That is true.

And, as reformers, they are in no shortage of corrupt policies, administrators and businesses which could use more than a little scrutinization. After all, the Bush administration controlled the US for eight years.

The ad states they will be advocating tougher rules on Wall Street.

Sounds like a plan except that McCain has continuously painted himself fundamentally as a deregulator. Never before this campaign has he advocated steps for tightening control on investment firms.

In fact, he has often taken his cues from two advocates of the free market approach, Alan Greenspan, former Federal Reserve chairman, and former Sen. Phil Gramm.

Also, a story in the New York Times cites individuals who were associated with Merrill Lynch, which was forced to recently sell itself to Bank of America, contributed nearly $300,000 to McCains campaign.

Collectively, that would make them the largest contributor to his campaign. I wonder if they realize it is their money which is helping to finance an ad claiming that he plans to put harsher regulations on the market which brought them soaring profits and their recent downfall.

Seeing that the pendulum has swung into the proregulation court for Americas financial quarter, McCain is quick to proclaim he will follow in accordance.

Last March, he gave speech on the housing crisis calling for less regulation by saying, Our financial market approach should include encouraging increased capital in financial institutions by removing regulatory, accounting and tax impediments to raising capital.

It was those practices and the hands-off approach from the Bush administration set the scene for the financial upheaval seen recently.

How quickly he was to parrot those approaches last spring and how quickly he

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue