11 sep. 2008

2. Next to Palin, even McCain looks like an economic genius.


Over the weekend Palin probably gave economic analysts throughout the land mini-strokes when she made an egregious misstatement about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the lending institutions at the heart of the housing market meltdown. During a speech in Colorado Springs, Palin stated that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had "gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers."

While the two companies will soon face a takeover by the Treasury Department, they are currently privately owned. So any burden on taxpayers is in the future, when the government goes about the task of helping the lending giants out of their largely self-made mess.

As the Huffington Post reports, Palin's gaffe does not auger well for her ability to handle the complex economic issues that will dog the next administration:

"You would like to think that someone who is going to be vice president and conceivable president would know what Fannie and Freddie do," said Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. "These are huge institutions and they are absolutely central to our country's mortgage debt. To not have a clue what they do doesn't speak well for her, I'd say."