At a time when economic assurance is as hard to come by as, um, economic stability, Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren has been a voice of reason. A bankruptcy expert and consumer crusader, Warren was chosen last year to head up the Congressional Oversight Panel on TARP, and though it's hard to say too many positive things about that $700 billion question mark, let's say this: Good to know she's on the case. Warren has been beating the drums for more transparency and accountability in the bank bailout, holding Tim Geithner's little piggies to the fire, and apparently we're not the only ones who admire her for this: Last night she landed the coveted hot seat on "The Daily Show," where she managed to calm even Jon Stewart.
Warren seemed a bit out of place in the first segment -- not quite certain how to navigate Stewart's jabs at the floundering TARP -- but she was back to her old self in the second segment (posted below), offering a brief overview of our country's cycle of financial panic and the problem with "pulling the threads out of the regulatory fabric." Funny, Seth Rogen didn't mention any of that in his appearance last week.
Warren scored major points for her final exchange, about the question that plagues everyone about banks these days: What happens next?
"We have two choices," she said. We're going to make a big decision in the next six months, and it's going to go one of two ways. We're gonna decide we don't need regulation -- it's fine, boom and bust, and good luck with your 401K. Or alternatively we're going to say, no. We're going to put in some smart regulations, we're going to adapt to the fact that we have new products and we're going to have security and prosperity going forward for ordinary folks.
"And that," Stewart quipped, "is socialism." But he went on to add: "That, by the way, that is the first time in probably six months to a year that I felt better ... That was like financial chicken soup for me."
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||M - Th 11p / 10c|
|Elizabeth Warren Pt. 2|