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Tom Coburn
  • The Massive Goldman Sachs Senate Hearing, Recapped (Caution: PG-13)

    Carl Levin (D-MI): We are gathered here today because you are the worst people on earth, and also because a little grandstanding never hurts going in to a midterm election. I will begin. You are the worst people on earth.

    Susan Collins (R-ME): There is an R after my name, so even though I agree with Carl, I will use gentler words like "unseemly" and "unsettling." You boys are cads.

    Claire McCaskill (D-MO): If it's all right with everyone, I'd like to make the first of many gambling analogies. John Ensign specifically asked us to do a lot of those, I'm not sure why.

    Fabrice "Fab Fab" Tourre, former VP, Goldman: My lawyers have instructed me to be as bland and evasive as possible. I will say that this week has been a a real bummer.

    Carl Levin: Now I'm going to read some emails aloud. You sold clients securities that you were shorting. How did you guys get comfortable with the source of these securities? How did you guys get comfortable-

    Daniel Sparks, former head of mortgages, Goldman: I don't- we don't-

    Carl Levin: How did you guys get comfortable with that?

    Daniel Sparks: I'm not sure what you're-

    Carl Levin: Yes you are, you're just being bland and evasive. Never mind, I have a new phrase I want to repeat. "Crap pools." This was in a Goldman email. Crap pools. Crap pools? Crap pools! Do you recollect that?

    Daniel Sparks: Um, I- what page is that- hmm. So much paper. I can't find it.

    Carl Levin: Moving right along. "Shitty deal." That's from another email. I can cuss all I want, on TV, this is great. Shitty deal. Shitty deal.

    Susan Collins: I want to ask a lofty ethical-sounding question that has zero relevance in the context of how Wall Street actually works. Do you have a duty to act in the best interests of your clients? I want to know so I can help defeat regulatory reform that might impose such a duty.

    Daniel Sparks: We, uh, we want to do well.

    Joshua Birnbaum, former MD, structured products, Goldman: I'll be the guy who says yes, we do.

    Fab Fab: We're a market-maker. We provide liquidity. I can say other finance words too.

    Susan Collins: I am going to ask you a lengthy but specific question, Fab. All you need to do is answer it.

    Fab Fab: Okay. You mentioned an email? Which email is that? I don't have that in front of me.

    Susan Collins: This is from your email on the 26th, at the bottom of the page.

    Fab Fab: Oh, I- no, I do have it. Can you repeat your lengthy but specific question? Slowly, this time. Maybe pause for a minute or two between each sentence.

    Susan Collins: You little fucker.

    Carl Levin: Fucker! Fucker! Fucker!

    Claire McCaskill: Shitty deal! Shitty deal! Sorry, mom.

    Tom Coburn (R-OK): Just sticking my head in to say I think y'all should be able to short whatever you want. High-five, boys. Make the checks out to Coburn for Senate.

    John Ensign (R-NV): I'm on! Knock knock.

    Everybody: Who's there?

    John Ensign: Nevada. I can't help but notice that you're comparing Wall Street to Las Vegas. What's up with that? In Vegas you know the odds. On Wall Street they manipulate the odds while you're playing. Thank you, you've been great.

    David Viniar, CFO, Goldman: That's a tough act to follow.

    Carl Levin: Tell me about your big short, David. Your big short on the housing market.

    David Viniar: Well, big short and big long.

    Carl Levin: Big short.

    David Viniar: Big long.

    Carl Levin: Crap pools. Shitty deals.

    David Viniar: That's very unfortunate to have on email.

    Everyone: Gotcha!

    David Viniar: I just meant I don't like the swear words. So many swear words.

    Carl Levin: Hiiiiii, Lloyd.

    Lloyd Blankfein, CEO, Goldman: Hi Carl.

    Carl Levin: I am going to talk about how you created and sold investments that you were betting against. Admit you did that.

    Lloyd Blankfein: I am going to talk about Goldman's role as a market-maker, which means we simply provide a mechanism for people to buy and sell assets that have been created. This will ensure that I avoid your question. It will also ensure that you avoid my answer. We live in different contexts.

    Carl Levin: Put it in a human context.

    Lloyd Blankfein: Are you kidding? Why do you think I went into i-banking?

    John McCain: My friends, what is a synthetic CDO? How come no one has asked that, ever?

    Carl Levin: Oh shitty deals, you guys, I forgot to mention AIG! Lloyd, AIG. You took taxpayer money from AIG. Admit you did that.

    Lloyd Blankfein: AIG paid us what they owed us.

    Carl Levin: With bailout money that came from taxpayers' pockets.

    Lloyd Blankfein: We weren't the ones who passed bailout legislation.

    Carl Levin: I wouldn't put it past you.

    Lloyd Blankfein: I- oh, never mind.

    Carl Levin: It's been almost eleven hours. Everyone's welcome to leave at this point. Not you, Lloyd. I want to see you in the cloakroom. I'm not done with you yet. Shitty deals. Crap pools.

    Lloyd Blankfein: You are absolutely adorable.


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    Tags: Banks, Carl Levin, Claire McCaskill, Economy, Fabrice Tourre, Goldman Sachs, John Ensign, John McCain, Lloyd Blankfein, Susan Collins, Tom Coburn
  • Fox News Has Never Ever Ever Never Said Anything About People Going to Jail for Not Buying Health Insurance

    Where did you ever hear such ridiculous nonsense anyway? Where?!

    From that same guy who told you that bullshit John McCain is a maverick, most likely. Man, that guy is a trouble maker.


    Tags: Bill O'Reilly, Fox, Glenn Beck, Health Care, John McCain, Neil Cavuto, Sean Hannity, Senate, Tom Coburn
  • Jon Stewart on the Bipartisan Health Care Summit

    Yesterday's big bipartisan health care summit is all anyone is talking about, and obviously not everyone is in agreement about it. Some thought it was a very strong summit that solved a lot of problems, others thought the entire summit should be scrapped and a whole new summit created in its place. Then of course, there are those who wanted voters to have a chance to speak at the summit, the so-called "public option." Fortunately, there's talk of a bipartisan summit to debate all of these points.

    Coverage of the summit continues below, including a via-satellite interview with Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC).

    The Daily Show airs Monday through Thursday at 11pm / 10c.

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    Tags: Barack Obama, Bipartisanship, CNN, Dick Morris, Eric Cantor, Fox, Health Care, House of Representatives, James Clyburn, John McCain, John Oliver, Jon Stewart, Mitch McConnell, Senate, The Daily Show, Tom Coburn, Video, Wolf Blitzer
  • Robert Byrd Selfishly Remains Alive Despite GOP Prayers

    As I'm sure everybody knows by now, the Senate voted 60-40 (right along party lines) in favor of the health care reformish bill of recent debate, thus decimating Republican hopes of a filibuster. And do you know which quasi-Democratic senator America really has to blame for this?

    No, it's not Ben Nelson, who, at zero hour, decided that he was more in favor of health care reform than in the subjugation of women.

    And it wasn't Joe Lieberman, who — after seeing to the gutting of substance from the bill — apparently ran out of plausible reasons to torture Democrats.

    Nope, it wasn't Bernie Sanders, who, I'm guessing, eventually got around to looking around the room at the people he was talking to, slumped his shoulders and gave up hope of actually accomplishing anything non-cosmetic.

    The real villain in this health care reform bill passage is the ailing 4,947-year-old Dixiecrat Robert Byrd who obstinately refused to die over the weekend, despite the most strenuous prayers of Republicans…

    At 4 p.m. Sunday afternoon — nine hours before the 1 a.m. vote that would effectively clinch the legislation's passage — Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) went to the Senate floor to propose a prayer. "What the American people ought to pray is that somebody can't make the vote tonight," he said. "That's what they ought to pray."

    It was difficult to escape the conclusion that Coburn was referring to the 92-year-old, wheelchair-bound Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.V.) who has been in and out of hospitals and lay at home ailing. It would not be easy for Byrd to get out of bed in the wee hours with deep snow on the ground and ice on the roads — but without his vote, Democrats wouldn't have the 60 they needed.

    To be totally fair to Sen. Coburn, I suppose he could have been praying for an icy car accident fatality of any one of the 60 Democratic senators.

    I don't mean to mischaracterize his words.

    Tags: Ben Nelson, Bernie Sanders, Democrats, Health Care, Joe Lieberman, Republicans, Robert Byrd, Senate, Tom Coburn
  • Tom Coburn and Max Baucus In "Mind Control Hijinks!"

    Those of you who don't watch Tom Coburn's YouTube channel on the regular may have missed yesterday's clip, in which the Senator from Oklahoma tells Max Baucus about a very special resolution he wants to pass by unanimous consent. Fret not! I've turned my recapping hat on…

    TOM COBURN (R-OK): For my next dickish move, I want to delay voting until Max Baucus can guarantee that every single member of the Senate has read the health care bill and understands it and can maybe recite parts of it from memory. I'm not trying to stall, here, it's just that nobody except Rahm Emanuel knows what this bill even says. It's on the internet, but only in .pdf format, so that doesn't count.

    MAX BAUCUS (D-MT): Can I say something?


    MAX BAUCUS: Look, Tom, of course we should read the bill, but I don't have the ability to control people's brains or guarantee their levels of understanding, even if they've read the entire thing backwards and forwards. How exactly would that work? You want me to hand out a reading comprehension test? Multiple choice questions?

    TOM COBURN [!Direct quote alert!]: "I'm saying that Tom Coburn tell his constituency, I've read this puppy, I've spent the time on it, I've read the manager's amendment, and I in fact certify to the people of Oklahoma I know how terrible it's gonna be for their health care."

    MAX BAUCUS: If that is what you'd like to tell your constituents, you're more than welcome.

    TOM COBURN: Tom Coburn hates this puppy. Tom Coburn wants you to guarantee that everyone knows how terrible this puppy is.

    MAX BAUCUS: I cannot guarantee that anyone knows anything. You are proving this point, actively, right now.

    (TOM COBURN punches SNOOKI in the face.)

    The End.

    Tags: Health Care, Max Baucus, Oklahoma, Puppies!, Senate, Tom Coburn