You can add to the seven dirty words the four others that Republicans never want you to hear: “Wall Street,” “shadow banking,” “interconnection” and “deregulation.” Marcy and Shahien and Mike Konczal and Brad DeLong have you covered on that.
But this debacle has taken a more hilarious turn. Because the Republicans on the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission had to come up with some “minority report” to give their side of the story, they rushed out a comprehensive primer on the causes of the crisis. You’ll be surprised to know that you can summarize the entire financial meltdown in 9 pages, with 3 footnotes. Who knew it was so easy to understand? In fairness, this represents only a “portion” of their findings, so that’s comforting, I guess.
The paper seriously starts with the declarative sentence “Bubbles happen.” That’s the level of intelligence the GOP will bring to bear on this debate. They, in short, don’t think the housing bubble “was a sufficient condition” for the financial crisis. I guess all that talk about mortgage-backed securities and credit default swaps was just part of an elaborate work of fiction. Their point is that poor black people really caused the crisis, along with the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act, which took 25 years off from destroying the US economy before coming back to haunt everyone.
All of this hid the REAL problem highlighted by the crisis, big gubmint and its indebtedness:
In their panoramic study of financial crises and the debt crises that follow, Reinhart and Rogoff identify perhaps the four most dangerous words expressed by investors, regulators, and policymakers before a crash: “This time is different.” We could not agree more. We caution our nation’s leaders to learn the appropriate lessons from history and take seriously the need to reduce our federal deficit.
Basically, this entire report was cribbed from “This Time Is Different,” the book from Reinhart and Rogoff that tells conservatives what they want to hear.
As Digby notes, the splitting from the investigative panel by the conservatives, and this fairly ridiculous report, is part of a pattern where conservatives respond to negative information by making up their own stories. Repeatedly over the years, Republicans in Congress have released their own “minority reports” that would dissent from the findings of a particular investigation. They simply re-create reality and cause a muddling, often of clear facts, for partisan gain.
And the media, rather than calling anyone on it, celebrates it, because it’s easier to get two people of opposing views in front of a camera to scream at each other than to actually report out the truth.