“Madam speaker, I believe the gentleman was a little too harsh on the Bush
administration,” Rep. Barney Frank, a Democrat from Massachusetts, said after
one Republican blasted the bill. “I understand his point of view.”
The fossil version of today's NY Times includes a crude and fairly vicious political cartoon run as a full page ad (p. A11). The ad features Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson as a Stalinist puppet master manipulating Congress and public opinion while Lady Liberty is turned into a Hooverized donation box for Wall Street Banks. The ad is paid for by Bill Perkins, who seems to run Small Ventures, USA - a Houston based venture capital and private equity firm.
It's possible Mr. Perkins has some bets down that will profit from financial collapse - but the look and feel of this ad suggest otherwise. Mr. Perkins seems like a true believer in free markets who is blowing his stack over the bail out and the expanded role for government that tags along with it.
Everyone is mad about the bailout, even those who believe it beats the alternative, but the Texans seem to be turning on Bush with the most fury, convinced that his moment of pragmatism in a crisis is proof that eight years in Washington have turned Bush into a traitor. This sudden, almost violent eruption against a man who was only recently a Texas standard bearer is the stuff from which revolts are made. The Dallas Cowboy's loss yesterday to - you guessed it- the Washington Redskins will add fuel to the fire, and the first shipments of munitions may already be on the way from Caracas to Houston, opportunistically disguised as hurricane relief supplies. Remember the Alamo.