Cain: I didn’t realize in 2005 that the housing bubble existed

posted at 12:45 pm on October 12, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

As Jazz Shaw predicted, the national media has suddenly begun doing a lot of homework on Herman Cain now that he’s riding high in the polls, and the first one to take a crack at the new Not-Romney is NBC’s Chuck Todd.  Todd challenges Cain on a 2005 column he wrote that dismissed concerns of a “bad economy” and a housing bubble, the latter of which at least turned out to be all too true.  Cain admits that he didn’t see it coming, which prompts the obvious follow-up question from Todd about just how good his economic instincts actually are.  This starts about four and a half minutes in, if you want to cut to the chase:

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TODD: All right, you predicted that if — now that you’re in the top tier, you were going to get more questions. I promise you this is not a “pop quiz” about foreign leaders.  I actually want to go into some things that you’ve written.  This is something you wrote in 2005, saying, arguing that there was no housing bubble.  You wrote this in 2005, in Business and Media Institute, you said, “Coverage of the Bush economy reads like a collection of Democratic Party press releases, calling a strong economy everything from struggling to volatile or dicey.  That kind of ignorance makes homeowners fear that their most expensive possession could turn worthless overnight.  That won’t happen.” August 2005.

The housing situation — that did happen, and it only happened within three years.  What did you miss in 2005 about the housing bubble?

CAIN: What I missed in 2005 was just how bad Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had distorted the housing market.  That’s why I said what I said in ’5.  I further learned later, in terms of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — I honestly did not realize just how bad it was, just how bad it was, just how bad the whole bundling and derivatives thing was, and that we were on the brink of a total financial meltdown.  So I learned later on by looking into it deeper that the situation was a lot worse than I thought in 2005.

TODD: Well, in 2008, this is September 1st, 2008, another column you wrote about the economy, and it reads as follows.  You wrote, “The supposed failure of Bush’s economic policies has been a constant theme of the Democrats since the 2006 elections.  When the Democrats regained control of the House and Senate by convincing enough of the voters that the economic sky was falling, and that the war in Iraq could not be won.  Based on all of their convention speeches, they plan to continue those themes right through Election Day on November 4.”

Economic sky was [not] falling, you said September 2008.  Fifteen days later, of course, the Lehman Brothers collapse — we know what happened after that: a total near sky-is-falling moment.  So how — I guess I would say this.  How do you reassure voters that, despite all the experience you’re running on in the business community, your time on the Fed, you missed the housing bubble and you missed the economic collapse.

CAIN: Well, it’s real simple, Chuck.  I have economic advisers working with me now who spend time studying these various analyses.  When I wrote those papers, I was only responding to reports that I, like everybody else, was getting through the media, those kind of public reports.  I wouldn’t –

TODD: Which turned out to be right, by the way.  You were criticizing those reports, but they turned out to be right.

CAIN: Well, yeah.  But what I am saying is I’m going to have, I will have people around me who are going to help me do deeper analyses on some of these things, okay? So yeah, I missed some of these things.  I’m not perfect.  I’m very quick to say I’ve made a mistake or I missed it, but I didn’t have sophisticated analyses helping me to draw the conclusions I was drawing at that time.  And remember, I have admitted that the housing bubble and the economic meltdown of 2008 — it was much worse than I ever realized until the Lehman Brothers situation started, and until more and more was revealed about the depth of the problems at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.  I admit I didn’t know all of the details of those situations.

That’s not exactly a confidence builder.  If Cain didn’t have access to “sophisticated analyses,” then why was he drawing conclusions at all?  And how sophisticated an analysis would it have taken to see housing prices had become serious decoupled from inflation starting in 1999?  By 2005, the Bush administration had already warned Congress twice about the housing market, specifically about exposure at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, to no avail. It’s not as though the overheating in the housing market was a secret in August 2005.

Given the paper trail, this is as good of an answer that Cain could have produced, but it’s going to stick to him like his Greenspan comment last night.  The saving grace of this issue in the Republican primary is that his main competition didn’t exactly set off warning flares in 2005 or 2008, either — but this will definitely be a big talking point in the general election if Cain is on the ticket.

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Chuck Sodd, lay off Cain. Your questions should be directed to Congress, who are responsible for the whole thing.

darwin on October 12, 2011 at 12:48 PM

“Todd challenges Cain on a 2005 column he wrote that dismissed concerns of a “bad economy” and a housing bubble,…”

Uh-oh…

Seven Percent Solution on October 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM

A lot of people missed it, but Cain did not cause the mess.

Mr. Joe on October 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Oof.

portlandon on October 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM

I had high hopes for Cain, and they’re all but gone. *sigh*

I hoped an outsider could step in, and do this job. Now I’m finding myself looking from within, and Newt would be a choice for me. At least he knows what he’s talking about, with the exception of this global warming nonsense, and his lack of sense for sitting with Pelosi.

capejasmine on October 12, 2011 at 12:51 PM

Thank you Darwin….Todd needs to talk to waters and frank

cmsinaz on October 12, 2011 at 12:52 PM

This is not good at all, a man with his expertise should have understood what was happening. There were lots of warnings. However, this is no worse than Romney saying he supported Obama’s call for stimulus, a fact which continues to be ignored.

flyfisher on October 12, 2011 at 12:52 PM

OT but this is good. A high school kid infiltrates the Wall Street Web of Tears and posts his “I am the 53%” story.

http://themorningspew.com/2011/10/12/beautiful-james-of-the-53-infiltrates-the-wall-street-website-of-tears/

bloggless on October 12, 2011 at 12:53 PM

I would have said the same thing back then. All the indicators were that the economy was doing well, but the MSM kept talking it down–and basically lucked out when the sub-prime market brought everything else down.

Count to 10 on October 12, 2011 at 12:53 PM

By 2005, the Bush administration had already warned Congress twice about the housing market, specifically about exposure at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, to no avail.

Herman must have listened to the Barney Frank version….

BigWyo on October 12, 2011 at 12:53 PM

That said, Cain said a few things last night that makes me hope he is doing his homework (I would have hoped for better answers). Now that he is considered a serious candidate he has to know the long knives will be coming out.

Be on guard.

Mr. Joe on October 12, 2011 at 12:54 PM

Yep. Their job is to take out the anti-Romney’s in favor of their chosen candidate, and that’s what they’ll do with Cain.

changer1701 on October 12, 2011 at 12:55 PM

Cain will bleed to death from a hundred small cuts.

He’s done. Just doesn’t realize it yet.

huckleberryfriend on October 12, 2011 at 12:55 PM

Cain worked at the Fed. There’s that.

faraway on October 12, 2011 at 12:56 PM

this will definitely be a big talking point in the general election if Cain is on the ticket.

A talking point amongst whom? The MSM? Their mantra is that DEREGULATION DEREGULATION DEREGULATION caused the recession. It was Capitalism run amok, Fannie and Freddie had nothing to do with anything. Just ask Maxine Waters, Gregory Meeks, and all the other House Democrats who argued that Fannie and Freddie were fine, and people who said otherwise were racists who wanted to deny “housing equality” to people of color.

ardenenoch on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

Cain will bleed to death from a hundred small cuts.

He’s done. Just doesn’t realize it yet.

huckleberryfriend on October 12, 2011 at 12:55 PM

The 999 plan is a time bomb.

faraway on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

Thank you Darwin….Todd needs to talk to waters and frank

cmsinaz on October 12, 2011 at 12:52 PM

I want to know why the media didn’t know about it.

darwin on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

Not sweating it. Relaxed and at peace.

Bishop on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

Barney Frank said the same thing. But Barney said it in Congressional Testimony, and Cain did not.

Del Dolemonte on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

I would have said the same thing back then. All the indicators were that the economy was doing well, but the MSM kept talking it down–and basically lucked out when the sub-prime market brought everything else down.

Count to 10 on October 12, 2011 at 12:53 PM

The difference is that you aren’t expected to understand fiscal policy whereas Herb Cain should. The housing bubble was just as obvious as the tech bubble. Actually, it was even more so because it was a replay of the 90′s tech bubble.

flyfisher on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

Bottom line: no one is omniscient, and pretending that people that haven’t guessed wrong yet are oracles is only going to lead to grief.

Count to 10 on October 12, 2011 at 12:58 PM

the obvious follow-up question from Todd about just how good his economic instincts actually are.

Just the way the press ripped into the Dems that told us Fannie and Freddie were just peachy keen in 2005 (and called us racists for raising the question).

/

mankai on October 12, 2011 at 12:58 PM

Cuz everyone knew on 9/1/08 that Lehmann would collapse 2 weeks later. I don’t think Lehmann knew it.

lorien1973 on October 12, 2011 at 12:58 PM

But Barney said it in Congressional Testimony, and Cain did not.

Del Dolemonte on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

And Frank, etal had information that Cain would not be privy too. And they still didn’t (or didn’t want to) see it.

Hell, Obama got warnings that Solyndra was going to tank and he still loaned them money.

Is this what we are coming to?

lorien1973 on October 12, 2011 at 1:00 PM

OK, who thought that there was a housing bubble in 2005? Almost no one thought that it was about to burst. The only news stories were people who were flipping their houses and turning huge profits. Those news stories were filled with commercials of companies who desperately wanted to refinance your home loan.

So Herman Cain is to be blamed for NOT seeing something that nobody else saw.

Snake307 on October 12, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Bottom line: no one is omniscient, and pretending that people that haven’t guessed wrong yet are oracles is only going to lead to grief.

Count to 10 on October 12, 2011 at 12:58 PM

+1. I’m not blaming Cain for not knowing what I didn’t know myself back then. At least he’s not Paul Krugman, who argued in 2001 that we needed a housing bubble.

Caiwyn on October 12, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Herman Cain……must be politically destroyed.

Welcome to Sarah Palins’ World Herman.

Enjoy your brief stay. As soon as they get you to go all Howard Dean “Yyyyyyyaaaaaagggggghhhhh” on them the Independents will abandon you and you’ll be back to 5%.

PappyD61 on October 12, 2011 at 1:01 PM

I hearken back to John McCain’s position on the economy during the same time period in ’08…. In ’08 Cain was not a sitting Senator, he was a semi-retired political pundit. Should he have seen it? Probably. At the point that all the writing was on the wall, what could have been done. How would Cain have handled the meltdown? I think that would be a fair question to ask.. He did support the bank bailouts to shore up the economy, but I don’t think he supported the way it was implemented. I’m not sure where he stood on using TARP for mortgage relief or automaker bailouts.

I’m ok with someone who admits to a wrong and figures out how/what to do to make it right.

Glenn Beck saw it coming, but everyone knows he’s just a fearmonger.

kringeesmom on October 12, 2011 at 1:01 PM

Chuck Sodd, lay off Cain. Your questions should be directed to Congress, who are responsible for the whole thing.

darwin on October 12, 2011 at 12:48 PM

We’re talking about a man who sat on the Federal Reserve Board (not at the time of the bubble) and didn’t have an idea that we were in a housing bubble in 2005? Sorry, that is woefully inadequate.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:01 PM

Hey Chuck, you partisan moron, so freaking what? You think any of the other candidates saw it coming? You think odumbo saw it? HELL NO! You reckon Chuckie saw it? Give me a break!!

ultracon on October 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM

My spin is that he knows he didn’t get it right and it’s refreshing to hear a pol just say “Yup, ya got me. I didn’t make the right call” instead of BSing his way though a bad answer.

I’m not ready to play Taps for HC just yet but I wish he’d gotten that right, too. Oh, well.

princetrumpet on October 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM

The housing situation — that did happen, and it only happened within three years. What did you miss in 2005 about the housing bubble?

All the experts, now say they saw in 2005 what was going to happen in 2008?
All the bank experts? All the MSM experts? All of the economic professors?
If everyone “knew” than why did it happen?
Almost every economic “expert” takes a guess,than later they “guess” again…so when the time comes, they point to the “right” guess.
Few are ever wrong…or admit they are wrong.
Imagine, every economist knew what was going to happen in 2008, when asked the question in 2005…yeah, sure…
Cain should have looked the guy in they eye and say…What is going to happen in 2014?
So all of you great economists, dissing Cain…what is going to happen in 2014?
Details please…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM

Greenspan was slow to see it too.

In the wake of the subprime mortgage and credit crisis in 2007, Greenspan stated that there was a bubble in the US housing market, warning in 2007 of “large double digit declines” in home values “larger than most people expect”.[49] However, Greenspan also noted, “I really didn’t get it until very late in 2005 and 2006.

petefrt on October 12, 2011 at 1:04 PM

Uh-oh…

Seven Percent Solution on October 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM

EggsZakary!
Cain could have gut punched Chuck Todd with a good revisitation of Barney Franks “Shiboleth” dissertation.

44Magnum on October 12, 2011 at 1:04 PM

We’re talking about a man who sat on the Federal Reserve Board (not at the time of the bubble) and didn’t have an idea that we were in a housing bubble in 2005? Sorry, that is woefully inadequate.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:01 PM

Alrighty then. Enough with Cain, throw him to the wolves. Who’s left?

darwin on October 12, 2011 at 1:04 PM

We’re talking about a man who sat on the Federal Reserve Board (not at the time of the bubble) and didn’t have an idea that we were in a housing bubble in 2005? Sorry, that is woefully inadequate.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:01 PM

Who did know?
Let’s have some names of economists who absolutely knew what was going to happen in 2008…and you have all the time you want to Google…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:05 PM

So all of you great economists, dissing Cain…what is going to happen in 2014?
Details please…

Exactly. People knew there was a housing bubble, but no one knew how it’d work out. People thought prices might drop (they can’t go up forever was the common refrain). Did any serious person see Lehmann/Fannie/etal collapsing? Nah.

lorien1973 on October 12, 2011 at 1:05 PM

The difference is that you aren’t expected to understand fiscal policy whereas Herb Cain should. The housing bubble was just as obvious as the tech bubble. Actually, it was even more so because it was a replay of the 90′s tech bubble.
flyfisher on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

Far from being obvious, it was obscured from all but a handful of experts, and even then they had to be looking at the problem right. If it had only been a housing bubble, prices would have fallen and it would have been delt with, but the way that the risks in mortgage loans were laundered through Fanny and Freddy was not really appreciated by anyone. In the end, it was the virtual government liability for nearly all of the mortgage default losses that promped TARP and all of the economic wast that followed.

Count to 10 on October 12, 2011 at 1:05 PM

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:05 PM

Bush, for one, who was trying to send reform packages to Congress that Frank and Dodd kept ignoring.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:06 PM

What I missed in 2005 was just how bad Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had distorted the housing market. That’s why I said what I said in ’5. I further learned later, in terms of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — I honestly did not realize just how bad it was, just how bad it was, just how bad the whole bundling and derivatives thing was, and that we were on the brink of a total financial meltdown.

So what. Nobody else saw the 08′ meltdown coming in 05′ either. If that’s the best they can come up with, he’ll be fine.

BacaDog on October 12, 2011 at 1:07 PM

petefrt on October 12, 2011 at 1:04 PM

That’s the point…the man with the greatest information, couldn’t predict it.
And if you look at his statments, many of them were “couched” with a “on the other hand”…which is why the only economist to trust is a one-armed economist.
The all remind me the “seance” creeps, who when they are right, jump up and down, and ignore the 90% that they are wrong…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:07 PM

No one is omnipotent. Few in 2005 thought housing was in a bubble. But if we’re looking back and holding past statements as a negative, than an 8% unemployment maximum claim should be enough to get Obama to drop his candidacy. Of course Todd wouldn’t advocate for that, though.

BKeyser on October 12, 2011 at 1:07 PM

Isn’t it nice, when media plays monday morning quarterback, and accuses somebody not being able to predicts economic meltdown, while giving a pass to the politicians who lied about the state of fanny and helping them to call all critics of fanny -racists.
Here is what Caine tried to say in 2005 and 2008 – the economy is as good as consumer confidence is. Basically sometimes it doesnt matter that things are fundamentally bad, as long as perception is that things are stable, they will be. When you start screaming that the sky is falling, at first nothing is going to happen, then when you start finding enough friends in the media to help with your screaming, it will become a self fulfilling prophecy – confidence will be shattered, and economy will come to ruin. Which is what was engineered by democrats in summer of 2008, when they started the rumors about indymac and banking sector under capitalisation. They were openly discussing , how it would help their candidate if economy was bad, and at the same time were rooting for the failure. It came about, and they thought -hey once we get our guy elected will easily cheerlead the economy back to health. Well, turns out it is easy to destroy confidence, it takes a while to build it up. Dems engineered the crisis, and now it is Caine , who tried to talk sense into people, to be calm, and not to repeat rumors untill economy collapses, who lacks economic acumen.

anikol on October 12, 2011 at 1:07 PM

Didn’t see it coming, is an inability to predict the future…WOW….some detective work for sure…..

2005 ? Must have been California leading the way, other parts of the country didn’t have it, thus didn’t see it.

JayTee on October 12, 2011 at 1:07 PM

like his Greenspan comment last night.

The single stupidest comment the good Mr. Cain made, so far.

Greenspan was a disaster and s/b in jail. All are ignoring his huge part in ruining the land, along with GWB, all the lefties…who sustained fluff, and sold houses to those who could never afford them…and offered other bennies to same…while enriching a bunch of crooks.

Schadenfreude on October 12, 2011 at 1:09 PM

We’re talking about a man who sat on the Federal Reserve Board (not at the time of the bubble) and didn’t have an idea that we were in a housing bubble in 2005? Sorry, that is woefully inadequate.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:01 PM

Did Romney see it, how bout Perry, Gingrich, Santorum, Bachman???.. Paul gets a pass cuz he’s been all about economic gloom and doom for decades….

Cain worked with the Fed in the 1990′s a mere 15 years before the bubble.

kringeesmom on October 12, 2011 at 1:09 PM

lorien1973 on October 12, 2011 at 1:05 PM

That’s true. However Cain admires and collaborated with Greenspan, Mr. bubble himself, who deserves a lot of the blame for the dotcom bubble as well as the housing bubble. Easy money was a bigger factor in both.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:09 PM

Those of you who are defending Cain’s position and claiming that you “didn’t see it, either” need to read Ed’s post objectively and try to get it. The Bush Administration — the ones with the most to lose in a bursting asset bubble? — had twice specifically warned Congress that FNMA and FHLMC had serious exposure to a significant housing price collapse; which made this news so commonly accepted that even before the collapse you could Google “housing bubble” and get millions of hits.

That’s the point. In a country where talking about the economy is a sport, for Cain to somehow not be aware of the precarious situation that wildly inflated home prices put this economy in is very disheartening.

And as much as Romney is a flip-flopping douchebag on social issues, I Effing Guarantee that he and every single employee at Bain Capital knew it, heart and soul. So if this election is All About the Economy, well … there it is.

PS The Sum of O’Bozo’s knowledge of The Housing Bubble is that he was using crooked political insiders to help him buy a house at the peak of the Bubble — “Is my credick good enough for this one?” He doesn’t know anything about houses and isn’t sure what you mean when you say “bubble”, but he thinks it has something to do with crack.

Jaibones on October 12, 2011 at 1:09 PM

Bush, for one, who was trying to send reform packages to Congress that Frank and Dodd kept ignoring.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:06 PM

Sorry pal, he never stated there was a “housing bubble”, even made a speech about how great it was that the largest number of people in the history of the U.S. own their own house…he was proud of the bubble.
So, I will give you another try…which shows you how difficult it is, even with Google and hindsight…
And, btw, it was a weak attempt, one bill that he allowed to get steamrolled…he never used the power of veto on any of those bills. FYI…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:10 PM

oof, not good.

kerrhome on October 12, 2011 at 1:11 PM

I thought his campaign was over when he mentioned that he liked Alan Greenspan. Oh, wait, was that just hyperventilating by people?

KingGold on October 12, 2011 at 1:11 PM

So all of you great economists, dissing Cain…what is going to happen in 2014?
Details please…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM

Amen, R2b. Hell, 99% of them didn’t see the August 11′ meltdown coming and they continue to be surprised by “unexpected” economic data month to month.

Soothsayers, they’re not.

BacaDog on October 12, 2011 at 1:11 PM

Jaibones on October 12, 2011 at 1:09 PM

Bush made it a point in a speech to the nation how great it was for how many people owned homes…that was one of his cornerstones, until it came unraveled in 2008…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:13 PM

All the experts, now say they saw in 2005 what was going to happen in 2008?

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM

Hey, I was paying attention in 2005 and one of the few people talking about an upcoming financial crisis was Glen Beck. His was such a lonely position in those days the “experts” said it was crazy talk and called him an alarmist.

Peter Schiff was, of course, one of the few in finance/brokerage who predicted it. It was a lone wolf view and when it turned out to have been correct, it made him famous.

So if Cain was slow to see it coming, he had plenty of company.

petefrt on October 12, 2011 at 1:13 PM

oh please. C Todd worked for the lefty Senator Tom Harkin…so this is just a shutting down of a conservative (you know, they are so stupid anyway)

Harkin must be proud of his boy

There were a few people that saw it coming…and the made tons of money off it, selling CDO tranches short

r keller on October 12, 2011 at 1:13 PM

Uh, didn’t McCain say the “fundamentals” of the economy were strong?

This is a ridiculous point, to go back in time and ask how Cain missed the housing bubble or credit crisis or whatever. Everybody just about missed it. You can dredge up some Cassandras who were warning everyone about anything.

My assessment: no damage whatsoever to Cain here.

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:14 PM

So all of you great economists, dissing Cain…what is going to happen in 2014?
Details please…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:03 PM

We’ll be in the midst of the recovery when never had under President Romney. GDP growth 6%-8%.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:14 PM

Todd needs to talk to waters and frank

cmsinaz on October 12, 2011 at 12:52 PM

He never will. No, Cain needed to turn the tables on Todd and redirect the conversation to Waters and Frank. And Dodd. The best line of the debate last evening was Newt’s call for Frank and Dodd to be “put in jail.” The best interview O’Reilly ever had was his confrontation with Barney Frank when he demanded he resign. For Cain not be to aware of the true culpability — of the Left’s perversion of the system to produce calamity and government intervention — is sad.

rrpjr on October 12, 2011 at 1:15 PM

Soothsayers, they’re not.

BacaDog on October 12, 2011 at 1:11 PM

That’s the word I was looking for…
Let’s see how many “experts” give us their prediction for 2014…nobody predicted nearly 10% unemployment for the past few years either…besides “Magical Marge and her Crystal Ball” down on Beacon Street…

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:15 PM

We’ll be in the midst of the recovery when we never had under President Romney. GDP growth 6%-8%.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:14 PM

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:15 PM

I don’t like it that our side goes after our people so quickly. What’s up with that, eh Ed?

I also don’t like it that the Republican establishment has anointed Romney. It has made me anti-Romney and, in general, I was not before.

Karl Rove, by the way, continues to be an a$$h0le.

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:16 PM

We’ll be in the midst of the recovery when never had under President Romney. GDP growth 6%-8%.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:14 PM

You are going to have to repost…you are typing too fast, I don’t understand what you posted.

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:16 PM

I’ve labored under Cain’s radio chats for years. Journalists like Chuck Todd are just scratching the surface. All the articles, radio show transcripts and speeches in Cain’s past will produce embarrassment after embarrassment. Even though he is a gifted orator, he will be shown as seriously under-informed, ready to make snap judgments without a proper assessment of the facts, and prone to get the country into a lot of unnecessary trouble. Of course, that same kind of information was available about candidate Obama too.

Mark30339 on October 12, 2011 at 1:17 PM


Fed Audiots

This Is Herman Cain

“I get the same stupid question at almost every one of these events,” Cain writes. “I know it’s a deliberate strategy. How can a person randomly show up at a hundred events and ask the same stupid question to try to nail me on the Federal Reserve? It’s really becoming annoying more than anything else.”

Unbelievable, naming Greenspan as the best ever Fed Reserve Chairman. Even Greenspan has admitted his own huge mistakes. Crony capitalism example of back scratching, Greenspan appointed Cain to his Fed Reserve job.

maverick muse on October 12, 2011 at 1:17 PM

Collapses are never expected.

If they were expected, measures would have been taken so there would be no collapse.

portlandon on October 12, 2011 at 1:17 PM

One more “I don’t like it.” Chris Cristie. Everything he said yesterday ticked me off, bigtime.

I’m really getting tired of the establishment, both Dems and Repubs.

Time for another Tea Party rally, I think.

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:18 PM

Hindsight is 20/20.

In 2005 there press was questioning if there was a housing bubble but many learned people were either saying no or that if there was the correction would be fairly mild (e.g. the rate of appreciation would slow of go flat for a few years). So if Mr. Cain was reading the same financial papers everyone else was reading, it’s quite understandable that he would have that opinion in 2005.

Anyway, in 2005 who would have thought that we would be entering depression like conditions and a bona fide socialist would be POTUS.

SPCOlympics on October 12, 2011 at 1:18 PM

Alrighty then. Enough with Cain, throw him to the wolves. Who’s left?
darwin on October 12, 2011 at 1:04 PM

Mike Castle.

Bishop on October 12, 2011 at 1:19 PM

Barney Frank said the same thing. But Barney said it in Congressional Testimony, and Cain did not.

Del Dolemonte on October 12, 2011 at 12:57 PM

And Barney said it in 2009. When Chuck Todd starts getting “concerned” about Frank, let us know.

Meh on October 12, 2011 at 1:19 PM

The MSM’s main job right now is to Palinize every who’s not Mittens.

Why everyone who’s not Mittens is unable to figure this out is just one of the unexplainable mysteries of life , I guess.

The Donks want to run against Mittens, and the GOP will happily comply.

I don’t know if I can stand this for another 13 months.

Really.

Bruno Strozek on October 12, 2011 at 1:19 PM

And as much as Romney is a flip-flopping douchebag on social issues, I Effing Guarantee that he and every single employee at Bain Capital knew it, heart and soul. So if this election is All About the Economy, well … there it is.

Must be why Romney, during the 2007/2008 primary season was warning about the impending collapse.

Oh. right. He wasn’t.

lorien1973 on October 12, 2011 at 1:20 PM

Mike Castle.

Bishop on October 12, 2011 at 1:19 PM

Now is his time. It takes a Carter Obama to get a Reagan Castle.

Meh on October 12, 2011 at 1:20 PM

You are going to have to repost…you are typing too fast, I don’t understand what you posted.

right2bright on October 12, 2011 at 1:16 PM

Sorry. In 2014 we will be enjoying the recovery that we never had under PBHO thanks to President Romney.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:21 PM

Meanwhile. Pass our stimulus and unemployment will never pass 8% !! – Obama.

Keep it in perspective, people.

lorien1973 on October 12, 2011 at 1:21 PM

I guess everybody’s decided Greenspan is the bogeyman in the Great Credit Collapse of 2008. Well I beg to stay off that bandwagon. The guy had a great run, you know, before 2008. He’s a monetarist. He’s a libertarian. He likes gold. He hates inflation.

Why are you Repubs buying the Greenspan bogeyman narrative?

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:22 PM

right2bright,

So all of you great economists, dissing Cain…what is going to happen in 2014?
Details please…

Greece and other nations on the periphery of Europe will default, the European Union will dissolve, the the Euro will be replaced by a patchwork of national currencies.

Global credit markets will freeze, stock markets will take out the 2009 lows, and our long depression will intensify. Hell people might even begin referring to 2011 as the “good old days” when at least the government was still sending out checks…

…And then a race of genetically altered, hyper-intelligent apes will conquer and enslave humanity.

Mike Honcho on October 12, 2011 at 1:22 PM

A lot of people missed it, but Cain did not cause the mess.

Mr. Joe on October 12, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Aww Please! you know the left is going to BLAME THE BLACK MAN.
( they cant blame obummer he is just half black, yea I played the race card!)
Every thing is Cains fault, From Columbus to AGW. Its all his fault! get on board the I HATE CAIN bandwagon is fun!

ColdWarrior57 on October 12, 2011 at 1:23 PM

That kind of ignorance makes homeowners fear that their most expensive possession could turn worthless overnight. That won’t happen.

It didn’t happen. Which leaves me going, huh?

Economic sky was [not] falling, you said September 2008. Fifteen days later, of course, the Lehman Brothers collapse — we know what happened after that: a total near sky-is-falling moment.

/looks up

Still there.

What’s the point of this whole piece? I’m supposed to vote for FlipFlomney, who thinks power plants kill people, because my house is worth real money still, and the sky didn’t fall?

Is the network that asks their viewers to bend over going to gather up all of Mittens’ prognostications? What about O’Tard?

MNHawk on October 12, 2011 at 1:23 PM

The saving grace of this issue in the Republican primary is that his main competition didn’t exactly set off warning flares in 2005 or 2008, either — but this will definitely be a big talking point in the general election if Cain is on the ticket.

If it’s a big talking point against Cain, then it should be the same for Mittens. I watched those debates and interviews in the 2008 GOP primary. When the hell did Romney ever predict or warn about an impending economic crisis caused by the housing bubble? The answer is never.

Throw Cain under the bus if you want(and BTW, that’s the whole point of this crap by the media), but understand that this means you’re casting your lot with Romney who was equally caught off guard when Lehman Bros. collapsed. Oh, and so was Newt. So was Bachmann. So was Perry. And most importantly, so was Obama.

Doughboy on October 12, 2011 at 1:24 PM

“The MSM’s main job right now is to Palinize every who’s not Mittens.”

Our job then is to Mittens-ize everyone who’s not Palin. Starting with Mittens.

Obama/Romney: Time for a change

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:24 PM

So you guys are ready to dump Cain now. Sad. I never like him in the first place but come on. Give someone a chance.

The main problem with conservatives now is they jump on anyone who might say what they want without any thought to how that person can and will be perceived.

Cain and some others can fill a purpose but they aren’t Dick Cheney and never will be. They shouldn’t be propped up like they are only to fail and make the party look bad. It happens all the time.

tomas on October 12, 2011 at 1:24 PM

Did Todd ever ask the largest recipient of GSE campaign cash if he saw the bubble break coming? How about the CEO of say Proctor and Gamble, did he/she know things were about to tank? Did Keith Olbermann, who knows everything?

Really Mr. Ed, this is an unwarranted slam on Cain.

A.C. McCloud on October 12, 2011 at 1:24 PM

“Mitt Romney: Obama lite”

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:25 PM

Here is my first post on the housing bubble. It was February of 2005.

First praising Greenspan then this. Herman Cain is not doing himself any favors this week. Unless Perry gets back up in the polls we might as well hand the nomination to Romney and then all of the stupid conservatives who rush from one candidate to the other can spend their time complaining about how they weren’t given a choice.

Your choice is Perry. Get over it.

Bill C on October 12, 2011 at 1:26 PM

Sorry. In 2014 we will be enjoying the recovery that we never had under PBHO thanks to President Romney.

MJBrutus on October 12, 2011 at 1:21 PM

… because Mitt’s liberal policies will be much more betterer for the economy than Obama’s!

Midas on October 12, 2011 at 1:26 PM

Speaking of economists, how about the fact that the person Cain identified last night as advising him on his 9-9-9 plan, specifically calling him an economist, isn’t?

HTL on October 12, 2011 at 1:27 PM

Question: What’s the difference between Romneycare and Obamacare?

Answer: Ask Tim Pawlenty

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:27 PM

Gee. This is earth shattering, isn’t it. Well, not really. Who, in fact, had access to sophisticated analyses and STILL got it wrong? I’d say many. How many who contribute to, say, Hotair or National Review, or WSJ or any number of other “expert” outlets didn’t see really grasp the magnitude of the distortions and impending collapse? Sure, there were those who did, but the democrats didn’t latch onto the idea of impending doom because they believed it, but because they could use it to political advantage. Most, I dare say, politicians are pretty clueless on all things economic. Herman Cain was not the only one commenting on things based on publicly available information fed to us by the media. The simple fact is, he didn’t (nor did I, nor most of you here submitting to hotair or commenting) know all the facts and could not know until the thing imploded. His answer is simple and honest. Others who are a bit more “truth challenged” might try to spin this, but he didn’t. That’s to his credit. I’ll bet Romney didn’t see what was really coming either, nor Perry, nor Obama, nor some in the Fed, nor some economists. Chuck was trying to bait him into doing some bobbing, weaving, and spinning. Cain just gave a straight answer. That’s all good.

BillyWilly on October 12, 2011 at 1:27 PM

John McCain didn’t know that the near financial meltdown was caused by the impact of the Carter-Clinton CRA on the housing market. He had the election issue handed to him and either didn’t understand it or was afraid of being called a racist. And of course the media, including the Chuck Todd’s of this world, had no interest in investigating and reporting on something which would damage the Democrats.

Basilsbest on October 12, 2011 at 1:28 PM

Bill C on October 12, 2011 at 1:26 PM

What’s wrong with Romney. He was excellent last night and seemed like the guy you’d want to fix the economy. Herman Cain got much farther than he expected, like Huck did in 08. He’s just not a great candidate and is prone to saying bad/crazy things. He’d be murdered in a general. Since there’s no other cons coming in and Perry is mortally wounded, what else do we have other than Romney.

IR-MN on October 12, 2011 at 1:29 PM

But BHO saw it coming and knew exactly what to do….but Chucky T is afraid to ask him.

d1carter on October 12, 2011 at 1:29 PM

Dear Mitt Romney:

You said last night you reject simple answers to complex questions. Good. So my question to you is this: Explain in 2000 words or more why you’re not Barack Obama II?

Keep it complex with lots of semicolons and Latin-based words. Like “circumlocution” and “obfuscation.”

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:29 PM

And how sophisticated an analysis would it have taken to see housing prices had become serious decoupled from inflation starting in 1999?

Hey Ed, remember how you were dismissive of any talk of recession in 2008?

Bill C on October 12, 2011 at 1:29 PM

The press talked down the Bush economy for eight years, why would anybody think they had credibility?

John Deaux on October 12, 2011 at 1:29 PM

Well Greenspan nor Bush were totally aware until after 2005…

The Democrats, when being warned about it by the Bush administration, refused to acknowledge it with people like Frank (saying ‘What housing bubble?’) and Maxine Waters just being a jerk about it.

Don’t think that Obama ever stated anything about it.. ever.

Wasn’t it during the Clinton & Bush administrations, that the policy was fully implemented, with Fannie & Freddie Mac getting totally underwater on junk mortgages.

I don’t find Cain at fault at all for this, because even the liberal media never reported about it because it would undermine their emotional belief that it was a constitutional right for anyone to own a home…

Danny on October 12, 2011 at 1:31 PM

Shortcut #231 on how to decide who’s a good Republican candidate:

Whatever Karl Rove says, vote the opposite.

MaxMBJ on October 12, 2011 at 1:31 PM

Out of his depth.

steebo77 on October 12, 2011 at 1:31 PM

Nobody understood at all the impact of Credit Default Swaps would have, nobody. If they say they did they are lying.

The Perma-Bears, who every year for decades now will attempt to claim they predicted it but thats about as accurate as a broken clock appearing correct twice a day. None of them every said a word about CDS and the accounting issues which is what wreaked the real havoc causing the entire system to collapse.

jp on October 12, 2011 at 1:31 PM

So you guys are ready to dump Cain now. Sad. I never like him in the first place but come on. Give someone a chance.

tomas on October 12, 2011 at 1:24 PM

It’s becoming a running gag. If a candidate isn’t perfect and omniscient, throw them overboard. People were ready to dump Newt over the Paul Ryan remarks. Then it was Perry over “Ponzi scheme” and “almost treasonous”. Now they wanna do likewise with Cain over “Greenspan” and not being among the 0.001% of people who saw the Lehman collapse coming way back in 2005.

Well this is our field, folks. Palin ain’t coming to the rescue. There’s no third party alternative. Your choices are Mittens, Cain, Newt, and Perry. Everyone else is 2nd tier at best. If you’re content with Romney, fine. Back him for President. Otherwise let these candidates make their case to the voters, evaluate their record, debate performances, and ALL of their public statements and make an educated, informed decision on who you’re going to support. Stop panicking every time they’re momentarily tripped up in an interview with one of the drive-bys.

Doughboy on October 12, 2011 at 1:32 PM

Must be why Romney, during the 2007/2008 primary season was warning about the impending collapse.

Oh. right. He wasn’t.

lorien1973 on October 12, 2011 at 1:20 PM

Romney didn’t predict collapse, but he did pimp Keynesian stimulus as a solution.

In the hard cover edition of his book, No Apology: The Case For American Greatness, Romney wrote that the “’all-Democrat’ stimulus that passed in early 2009 will accelerate the timing of the start of the recovery.”

Yet, as reporter Thomas Burr, of The Salt Lake Tribune​, noted, the subsequent paperback version of Romney’s book was edited to say that “the ‘all-Democrat’ stimulus passed in early 2009 has been a failure.”

Further, in an appearance on Fox News in January of 2009, Romney himself said that it was “important for us to have a stimulus plan, and to have a series of legislative initiatives passed to help get this economy going again.”

flyfisher on October 12, 2011 at 1:32 PM

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