In the Roosevelt Room after the session, the Treasury secretary, Henry M. Paulson Jr., literally bent down on one knee as he pleaded with Nancy Pelosi, the House Speaker, not to “blow it up” by withdrawing her party’s support for the package over what Ms. Pelosi derided as a Republican betrayal. “I didn’t know you were Catholic,” Ms. Pelosi said, a wry reference to Mr. Paulson’s kneeling, according to someone who observed the exchange. She went on: “It’s not me blowing this up, it’s the Republicans.” Mr. Paulson sighed. “I know. I know.”Holy shit! You wonder if Paulson started singing Boyz II Men. MEGAN: That would've been kind of awesome, though I think the person Paulson needs to ass-kiss is John Boehner, whose name is technically pronounced BAY-ner but after fucking up the bailout at John McCain's request yesterday, I think we can just pronounce it how it looks. SPENCER: You know what's perfect about Boehner? He has an aide named Kevin Smith. As in the Kevin Smith who fucks up everything he touches and cheapens our love for such beautiful things as comic books and the New Jersey Turnpike. And I'm unconvinced Boehner/McCain's gambit will work. MEGAN: Dude, I think it makes John McCain look like his whole purpose in coming back here was to fuck this up. Other people agree. SPENCER: No no no I totally get that. The scenario would be like Obama starts to hold his non-debate town hall in Mississippi, it gets five minutes in and then all the networks cut away to a McCain presser in Washington where he announces that his tireless work has yielded a deal. Right? But it's only actually a deal if the Democrats go along with it, and after yesterday's acrimony, they're not going to assist McCain in torpedoing their candidate. Well, maybe Hillary. MEGAN: Well, Hillary's totally not involved in it. And, yeah, I mean, McCain's backing the Boehner plan which is to provide tax breaks to companies that buy up bad debt and provide government insurance for it all because, as WaMu and IndyMac proved, insuring bad debt doesn't cost taxpayers any money whatsoever! SPENCER: So the Democrats get to be on the right side substantively and politically, and McCain reinforces the narrative of his unforced error. How is this bad for Obama? I remember how yesterday's liberal conventional wisdom was how McCain was setting himself up to vote against the bailout! MEGAN: Only if Chuck Todd is right and no one televises the Obama debate. SPENCER: That's where I have no insight. What else are the networks going to broadcast? MEGAN: Let's hope not reruns, because I don't have cable up here. SPENCER: It costs money for them to have to upend their scheduling for a re-done presidential debate, I imagine that they're going to just give Obama the time since at least some fraction of the audience will tune in anyway. JUST LIKE THE LIBERAL SHILLS THEY ARE. Clearly McCain has his cock in the pooch's ass here. MEGAN: Yeah, I also love how he's all like well, if Obama had just agreed to my town hall meetings then the debates wouldn't be necessary or important. He's never going to fucking let that go, and no one gives a shit. That was a blatant political move as much as coming back to DC to "save" the bailout plan. SPENCER: The people I feel bad for are, like, Tucker Bounds. He needed McCain to win, just really really needed it, because no one else is going to hire a flack who ruined his own credibility. I was in the Austin gymnasium where Ari Fleischer told a goggle-eyed press corps that "Palm Beach County is a Pat Buchanan stronghold" and if Bush hadn't pulled that shit out, Ari would never have been able to get another job here at all. Well, maybe that's wrong, because there's the whole spirit of "he had to lie for his boss" in DC, but still, you see what I'm getting at. MEGAN: The problem is that Tucker Bounds is bad at it, not that he's a liar. But, yes, if McCain loses, he'll be in trouble job-wise because of his basic incompetence. SPENCER: And Tucker Bounds' people. Basically the whole McCain communications shop. The Weekly Standard can't hire all of them. Some will have to get jobs doing things like sucking GOP staffers off in the Union Station men's room. This economy, it's tough. MEGAN: As though GOP staffers have to pay other staffers to suck them off in the men's rooms of Union Station. Only Lindsay Graham has to do that. SPENCER: Hey, that's never been proven. MEGAN: That's the kind of discretion that Lindsay Graham is paying for! SPENCER: You know what sucks about DC? If there's no debate tonight, I don't know what my plans are. I'm supposed to have people over to watch the fucking thing. MEGAN: I'm supposed to be live-blogging the stupid thing after my sister's rehearsal dinner, so tell me about it. SPENCER: You, you're going to a wedding, with your family, you're set, there's nothing excruciating about that. I'm at the mercy of twitter-whims. MEGAN: You and your sarcasm. SPENCER: Jesus FUCK there's a bunch of construction workers in my office knocking out a wall. I wish someone would have told me not to come in today. MEGAN: Oh, if you didn't know, we do know how Treasury arrived at the $700 billion figure.
"It's not based on any particular data point," a Treasury spokeswoman told Forbes.com Tuesday. "We just wanted to choose a really large number."And that's not even why John McCain wants to scuttle the motherfucking thing. SPENCER: Now that's how the professionals do it! I read that and just think, what these people need is $700 billion without strings attached. MEGAN: Hey, what Republican doesn't want that? SPENCER: So there was this event last night where my friends Ezra and Yglz held forth on where progressivism is at these days, and Ezra said something that's haunted me all night. It's probably totally obvious to anyone who isn't an economic illiterate: Liberals are about to (PROBABLY HOPEHOPEHOPEAUDACITYHOPE) take power, on the headwinds of promises to restore a sensible balance between government and the market. There will be expectations, naturally, of doing... stuff. You know, delivering on promises about health care and education and the sort of robust safety net that distinguishes liberalism from its alternatives. But there's no money for that stuff anymore — the crisis has wiped it out. So now liberalism is in an awful dilemma: power, but without the means to use it; a consensus around nationalizing huge swaths of the market, but without the ability to get it to deliver on the purchase. Later he and his fellow panelists qualified the idea to death or dismissed it, but shit, you know? MEGAN: I think Boehner proves there isn't necessarily a consensus around nationalizing vast swaths of the market, but I think it's hilarious that it's not because of the idea of nationalizing anything but because of taxes. And, yes, this financial crisis fucks up pretty much every major expenditure program the Obama camp had on its agenda — Pelosi's already talking a wealth surtax to pay for the bailout, which then screws Obama's tax plans, which screws health care, etc. The only thing it might prompt would be a major tax system overhaul, which we need anyway. But Charlie Rangel's too deep in the shit right now to be able to put that together. SPENCER: I can't tell if what you're saying is reassuring! Dumb it down. MEGAN: Um, no, it wasn't reassuring. I don't have The Hope. SPENCER: Speaking of hopelessness, have a good wedding MEGAN: We toasted the End of Fun last night. And then annoyed a gay bar by singing "Going to the Chapel." SPENCER: I see from your Twitter feed that your gay karaoke friends inserted SUCK MY COCK into the "Sweet Caroline" refrain. How to get Fenway Park to do that? Come on Boston fans, out of the closet with ALL of you. MEGAN: It was way better than shouting "BUH BUH BUM" but I'm betting they just did it because they were Yankees fans.