Pelosi to push for Pecora Commission-style inquiry
Wall Street may be heading for the deepest investigation of its practices since a congressional panel’s probe of abuses following the 1929 stock market crash.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans to push for a comprehensive inquiry, saying that three-quarters of Americans want to know what led to the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and the collapse of Bear Stearns Cos. and Merrill Lynch & Co. She favors one patterned after Senate Banking Committee hearings led by Ferdinand Pecora starting in 1933, according to her spokesman, Nadeam Elshami.
The Pecora review “was probably the single most important congressional investigation in the history of our country, except perhaps the Watergate hearings,” Donald Ritchie, associate historian for the U.S. Senate, said in an interview.
I never thought I'd use the words "predictably lame" and "Barney Frank" in the same sentence, but The Big Disappointer, er, does not disappoint: Barney Frank's response is predictably lame:
Pelosi, a California Democrat, will speak about hearings this week to lawmakers, including Representative Barney Frank, chairman of the panel that writes banking law, Elshami said.
“I think it’s useful to have it, but that should not be a reason to hold off on legislating,” Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat, said of Pelosi’s proposal after a speech in Washington yesterday.
Who does Frank think he is? The Red King in Alice in Wonderland? "Sentence first, verdict afterward"? I mean, isn't it barely possible that the results of the Pecora Commission might impact legislation?
NOTE I've chewed on Leader Nance's ankles before, gawd knows. If she'd left Bush's impeachment on the table in 2006, I bet we'd be in better shape today. That said, this is a good move. And if it's citizen outrage and activism that caused it, so much the fucking better.
UPDATE For more on the Pecora Commission in contemporary discourse, see the tag.