Tuesday, July 02, 2002

Well, this should leave Bush's defenders fuming- Paul Krugman has just come out and pretty much accused George W. Bush of insider trading:

But long before that ruling — though only a few weeks before bad news that could not be concealed caused Harken's shares to tumble — Mr. Bush sold off two-thirds of his stake, for $848,000. Just for the record, that's about four times bigger than the sale that has Martha Stewart in hot water. Oddly, though the law requires prompt disclosure of insider sales, he neglected to inform the S.E.C. about this transaction until 34 weeks had passed. An internal S.E.C. memorandum concluded that he had broken the law, but no charges were filed. This, everyone insists, had nothing to do with the fact that his father was president.
I could make the obvious point about how Clinton was hounded for crimes that were relatively benign (or utterly ludicrous) compared to this little bit of chicanery, but why bother? There's no organized movement on the left to take advantage of this; to dig into Bush's every wrongdoing (real or implied) and do their damnedest to get the man out of office. Even if there were, they would no doubt run up against endless cries of How Can You Question Our President? There's a War On, You Know!

(By the way, does anybody else recognize that last sentence from Harlan Ellison's excellent short story "'Repent, Harlequin!' Cried the Ticktock Man"? It always sort of creeps me out when life imitates fiction, and when it imitates Ellison... Ye Gods.)

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