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Politics: December 26th the most shameful day ever in D.C.

Updated on October 28, 2014
Phil Gramm
Phil Gramm | Source
McCain and Phil Gramm
McCain and Phil Gramm | Source
Gramm and his buddies
Gramm and his buddies | Source
Alternate title for "Lean Against the Wind."
Alternate title for "Lean Against the Wind." | Source

Tiny Asks a Question

Tiny had a question. “Mither Jay—everyone seth we are headed for hard timeth. I don’t unda’thtand.”

Everyone began setting out their lunches while we ate on a picnic table behind the Center. Big Jim brought out a bologna sandwich and carton of milk. He had been losing weight. He wanted to look like Cheney Carson, a famous country western recording star. I was proud of him. “Yeah, that’s what I keep hearing—what’s it all about?”

My head went spinning at the thought of trying to explain it to them. I knew the answer and then reminded myself that I never talked down to my students. “It means we are going to live with less money. Your parents will need to work longer hours and they won’t be able to purchase the things they need or go on vacations. It means your older brothers and sisters won’t be able get jobs even though they are college graduates. Instead of moving out of the house and getting married, they will stay with you because they don’t have enough money.”

Arch’ said, “Yeah, my older sister could be teach’n, and instead she’s work’n at Walmart for minimum wage. Dad says she’ll be with us for ‘God knows how long’ and it ain’t her fault.” He held up a watch that dangled from his wrist. “She bought this for me with her employee discount.”

“Everyone want work.” Tiny opened his thermos and stuck a straw into the lemonade. “Who did thith to uth?”

“Yeah—who is the scum bag?” Big Jim flashed his badge. “He’s under arrest!”

“I wish it were that easy.” I laughed. “Most everyone thinks it was a guy from Texas called Phil Gramm.” I pulled out a copy of Newsweek that I had been carrying with me and found his photo on an inside page. “Here he is with Senator McCain.” They eyed it intently.

“If he’s a crook, why is he a bud with McCain?” Arch’ nibbled on a bag of chips while he studied the photo.

“They are both from Texas and McCain probably doesn’t understand his friend is no good.”

“Thomebody outta tell’m!”

“I imagine that he has been told, but doesn’t understand enough about money to see it clearly.” I poured milk from my thermos into my cornflakes. They all understood that I ate breakfast at noon. I was an ole man and was kinda strange with my eat’n habits. “According to the article, Mr. Gramm wanted to make a lot of money while he was a Senator and passed a thing called the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999—and he was sneaky about it. He waited until the day after Christmas and snuck it into the congressional budget just as they were getting ready to vote on it. No one read it and most everyone figured it wasn’t anything important.”

“It sounds like a good thing—like it was supposed to be someth’n good.” Big Jim licked a pickle.

“Oh, yes—to this day he claims he is a reformer. His bill wiped out bank regulations that kept evil men from stealing all the money since the last Great Depression. It was much like deciding to let all the criminals out of prison and letting them run loose in the streets.”

“They’re all under arrest!” Big Jim showed his badge to everyone and gave a discerning nod of his head.

I pointed to the article. “It says here that his wife was on the Enron board and—“

Arch said, “Enron—I heard of that. That’s the company that robbed California residents in a big electricity scandal!”

“Yep, Gramm’s wife, Wendy made over a million dollars before it was all over. There were specific provisions in the Act that made Enron exempt from regulations—”

“They thould give the money back!” said Tiny. “If everyone knew they thtole it, they thould give it back!” He jumped to his feet and shook his fist.

“Give it back!” echoed from the others. Maurice banged on the table a few times and grinned.

“Yeah,” I agreed. “But they work the scam in such a way that they can get away with it.”

“They no give back, then?” Tiny fed a pigeon that had landed at his feet.

“No, they use the money to purchase big houses because no one really knows they pulled a fast one.” I flipped the page. “Matter of fact, it says here that Phil went on to a big job working for USB, a big bank in Switzerland and made a ton of money there lobbying in D.C. And then guess what happened?”

Arch’ knew. “I’d bet USB went belly up from all of Phil’s shenanigans!”

“He muggled and buggled ‘em all!” Big Jim was the one who had reported that mugglers and bugglers snuck up the sewer system during Halloween. We had been on the lookout for them ever since. Fortunately, there were no recent reported sightings.

“Yeah— Mr. Gramm couldn’t fool you guys!” I laughed. “But the people who control the banks of the world aren’t as smart as any of you!”

“I thought bank people were thupothed to be thmart.” A fly landed on Tiny’s sandwich. “Sho fly!” He brushed it away and wrapped his arm around his sandwish. “My food!”

“In a sense they are smart in that they always make sure that they become rich regardless of how it turns out. Unlike real businesses in which you lose all your money when you get too greedy, they get their friends in the government to bail them out.”
“BAIL OUT!” Big Jim eyed the fly that circled around his sandwich like an F-16. “I heard about dat. “They give themselves raises with the bailout money and have wild parties, too. Mom told me about that last week.” He wacked the fly and watched it drop to the gravel.

“I thaw that on TV!” Tiny eyed the fly that was writhing at his feet.

“That’s the danger of businesses giving money to politicians. It legalizes the shenanigans.”

“And no one goes to jail?” Big Jim opened a bag of pretzels and offered one to Arch’ and Tiny.

“It’s a game that has been going on since the beginning of time.” I tossed the magazine onto the desk and finished up my corn flakes.

“You scratch my back and I’ll scratch—” Arch nibbled on the pretzel as though it were a rare imported Swiss chocolate.

Tiny scratched his head, somewhat dizzy from the discussion of international banking and assorted bad guys. “What can we do to thtop all dith thuff from happening?”

I drank down some orange juice. “Good question, Tiny. The best we can do is to vote for people who have a moral compass. Vote for good people, whenever we can.”

“I not old enough to vote--”

“…And they say one thing; and then do another,” scowled Big Jim.

“It might be fair to say the present generation has let you down. We’ll all be paying for this for a very long time.”

“Phil Gramm—He bad man. Make world bad place….”

“Yes, Tiny. We’ll all be living in it very soon.” I gathered my things. “Is everyone ready to go back to work, now?”

“Hi ho! Hi ho! It’s off to work we go….”


If you enjoyed this HUB, you may also enjoy Arch'


If you want to make a comment, you may ask Big Jim, Tiny, and Arch' a question and RJ will see that they get right back to you.


If you wish to read more about Phil Gramm, use the links and read about it first hand. With any luck at all, this story will enrage you. We are seeing riots all over the world as a result of Mr. Gramm’s activities as societies come to realize that much of the wealth has been stolen from them.


Try reading the entire novel "Somewhere in Heaven Shines a Rainbow" available at Amazon.

Look over Signed print editions of Reynold Jay's novels.


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    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      8 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Tiny wanted this one. " With age cometh withdom. I kinda young but I ith learning."

      RJ, " Thanks for the comment. "

    • cajunrooster profile image

      John David LeCoq 

      8 years ago from San Antonio, Texas

      This is a great read. It's very, very poignant. Once upon a time I thought all our elected officials were good and honorable men. Boy, was I naive and mistaken!! I was much younger then but over the years I have learned. Thanks for a great story.

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Tiny wanted this one. " Hi Karaoke Guy! Can you bring a Karaoke player to thchool? We all like to thing. You thing good I bet! You vote for Tiny. I too young."

      Big Jim says, " Yeah, please vote for someone who ain't gonna screw us over!"

    • PDXKaraokeGuy profile image

      Justin W Price 

      9 years ago from Juneau, Alaska

      Very entertaining read, and what a simple way to tell a tragic story. i t saddens me that all of our leaders, seemingly and irregardless of party affiliation, are out for self more then for the good of those they were elected to protect and serve. This might be why I vote third party now. Everyone seems shady in the major parties

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Tiny wanted this one. "Hi Poli! I not thure your name. I call you Poli? You help get country back in order for me pleath. We need a bunch of thtuff done. I want a lawnmowa tho I can make thome money and--"

      Big Jim whacked Tiny across the back of the head. "You and that lawnmower--that's all you can think about. Just tell her you are glad she made da comment and we can go to lunch."

      Tiny scratched his head. "Okay Poli you pretty but not like that Nancy polithi woman with the big eyth. Thank you and thee ya next time. "

    • PoliCommandments profile image


      9 years ago from DeKalb, IL

      I like your writing style. From the dialect cues to the descriptiveness, I can imagine this occurring right in front of me. Your political viewpoint is also given light, and I love the incorporation of past and current events. Keep up the good writing!

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Thank you to all above for the awesome commnents. I did not receive any notice that all these comments were arriving and so you can see a lack of response from me. Yes, corruption will find its way into every corner of our world and that is unfortunaete indeed. As for the current ONE rating, I believe it is because I run links to my book sales site in nearly every HUB and it drives the number down. I could be in error, however I think that is it. OR they should add those 2 zeros to it! I did check to see if I had any VIOLATIONS and there are none. In that Adsense pays less than a dollar a month for my HUBS. I feel I may as well promote my books. Writing and my books are the focus of much of my life and I can only wish I had more readers to share my thoughts. And I wish I had more time to read everyone's HUBS too.

    • PETER LUMETTA profile image


      9 years ago from KENAI, ALAKSA

      Reynold and crew, a big thumbs up for seeing things clearer than 90% of the rest of the country. Maybe you could talk to the tea drinkers and maybe they would learn something. Thanks for a wonderful article,


    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Brilliant! Voting up and following you.

    • Noemi Secci profile image

      Noemi Secci 

      9 years ago from Olbia Marittima, Sardegna, Italy

      Amazing hub!!Now i'm your fan too :-)

    • poetvix profile image


      9 years ago from Gone from Texas but still in the south. Surrounded by God's country.

      I stand in awe of how you took such a complex issue and wrote an enchanting, engaging, informative, social story about it. You are a teacher/writer extraordinaire.

      I know squat about how this personal hub score thing is computed, but I know they left out two zeros behind yours. I had to vote this up and share on Facebook.

    • TheBigChill profile image


      9 years ago from Bosnia and Herzegovina

      Nice HUB! FAN!!!

    • benzine87 profile image


      9 years ago

      Great Hub Reynold, new fan here!

    • kamimi profile image


      9 years ago from my house

      Great hub! I love it. Thanks for sharing :]

    • BethanyLynn211 profile image


      9 years ago from Bangor, Pa

      Loved this hub. Voted up and useful!

    • Troyangeluk profile image


      9 years ago from UK

      lol Im really gald you shared this with me Rj, stunning hub, the best I have read yet however short that may be here at hubpages. Im follwing you and hope to see more great hubs like this soon.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Hi Tiny and Big Jim,

      So glad to see you both on hub pages.

      Sometimes smart people let greed take over the morals. Instead of using their brains to do good things, they do bad things.

      Say hi to Mr. Jay for me.:)

    • profile image


      9 years ago from Franklin

      Our world is wacky! :-)

    • christopheranton profile image

      Christopher Antony Meade 

      9 years ago from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom

      Almost anywhere there is power there seems to be corruption.

      We live in a wicked world.

      Is that Gramm guy still in politics?

      It sounds like he really ought to be in jail instead.

    • profile image


      9 years ago from Franklin

      I meant to say 14 Trillion $$$ in debt. :-)

    • soni2006 profile image

      Rajinder Soni 

      9 years ago from New Delhi, India

      A very well written and researched hub. And the most important thing is that it is so timely posted here. Voted up RJ.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett C 

      9 years ago from Asia

      Voted up and interesting, nice work! From the amount of comments, this is clearly a very popular hub.

    • BukowskiBabe profile image


      9 years ago from Somewhere in the middle of it all.

      Excellent, well writen Hub. You are indeed a writer. I don't want to gush, but this was really, really good. I'm so sick of the crooks in DC. It's an outrage that we can't seem to stop. I say fire the entire lot of em!

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Big Jim wanted this one. "Mr. Jay says he loved your HUB and between the two of you that you could run the country much better than the jokers that run it now."

      Check this out!

    • Soldieringon profile image


      9 years ago from Hemet, CA

      Loved the hub. Absolutely loved it. You might want to check out my newest one, this one's about the debt ceiling:

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Tiny wanted this one. "Hi, Mith Dee! I look at your HUBth and thee you are a hithoriaical perthon like me. George wathington would roll over in his grave if he thaw what ith happening today!"

      Big Jim polished his badge. "Yeah--and he would arrest them all!"

    • Ms Dee profile image

      Deidre Shelden 

      9 years ago from Texas, USA

      Very engaging description of complicated robbery's made by today's crooks! An enjoyable way to be informed :)

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      "Thanks for stopping by..." Big Jim.

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image


      9 years ago

      What a mess politics are-politics as usual, I'm afraid.

      Lots of fun reading this :)

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Big Jim moved the picnic table to the shade, then got out his badge. "Hi TK! Hey--you just point thse guys out to me and they are all under arrest!"

      "Yeah--he meanth it too!" Tiny swatted a fly.

    • TKs view profile image

      TKs view 

      9 years ago from The Middle Path

      Hey Big Jim, You seem like you have a important job there. But remember, it's not just Phil Gramm's fault. Just like the current state of affairs isn't just President Obama's fault. This economy has been in the works for quite some while.

      The flaw in the system is the econmic immorality of greed that corrupts all those who attempt to lead, even if they started out with good intentions. I have no doubt, those unwilling to play the game in politics are pushed to the side early on in their careers.

      PenMePretty) I find it interesting to say the least, the phrase you used is not the standerd saying. "Up cripple creek without a paddle. . . ." Usually, Ive seen it written, "up a creek without a paddle." Why this is amusing to me is here in Colorado there is an old mining town called Cripple Creek. It is now the largest gambling town in the state. Many of the former residents can't afford to live there anymore to the sharp increse in property values and taxs. Connecting that to the subect that Reynolds students spoke about with such sincerity. How nice it must be to gamble with someone else's money, and profit no matter who the roulette ball lands on.

    • 50 Caliber profile image

      50 Caliber 

      9 years ago from Arizona back ground music for PenMePretty, and her fine picture as she reads up

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Big Jim is still licking on a pickle, however he wanted to field this one. "Hi PenMePretty! Shucks, you pretty lady all right."

      Tiny admonished Big Jim, "Hey you can't talk like that! where the heck are your mannerth?"

      "OK... I forget. We got no homework at my school. We learn everything from Mr. Jay and if we have a question, he usually gives us an answer. Sometimes he asks us questions and then we figure it out ourselves."

      Tim smiled. "Yeah--Mither Jay sneaky the way he teach uth thtuff."

      Big Jim finished the pickle and sucked on an olive. "Let's not forget Mr. 50 Caliber. Mr. Jay says he researched this many years ago, before he was a writer because he wanted to know the true cause of the bubblebust."

      Tiny nibbled on a vanilla cookie. "Mither Jay thought about doing s theriuth article on it and thaw that otherth had it covered. Tho he let me and Big Jim tell the thtory!"

      "Yep! We know all about Phil--" Big Jim flashed his badge. "And if he comes around here, he's under arrest!"

      "He bad man!"

    • 50 Caliber profile image

      50 Caliber 

      9 years ago from Arizona

      Outstanding style of presentation on a subject that raises the hackles, yet I still had to smile as I read along and like Mike the Poolman, learned some and will investigate the links for more, Peace, dusty

    • profile image


      9 years ago from Franklin

      You really did your homework on this one. Very interesting.

      I keep asking myself: Our nation is 1 trillion in debt,

      where does this leave us??? Up cripple creek without a paddle.... :-)

    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Tim wanted this one. "I like red thirt and white hat! You don't look grumpy to me. You good man."

      Binaya...Big Jim says, "Mr. Jay good man. He knows how to talk to everyone and make unda stand'n stuff easy. Mr. Jay talk to us about all religion too. We unda stand Buddism and a little about India. We are all happy to to meet you and know you come from the other side of the world. We good friends. Thank you for visiting Mr. Jay's HUB. We talk again soon.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      I read very few articles on economy, politics and social issues; not that I'm not interested, but because very few can write about these topics, like you do in this hub, in simple, insightful, understanding and interesting way.

    • profile image

      Old Poolman 

      9 years ago

      Reynold, this was an outstanding hub, one of the best I have ever read. I learned a great deal just from reading this, and have since done a little more homework on this subject. Thanks for writing this and I will be a loyal follower of yours from now on.

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image


      9 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      (laughing my ass off) I love these guys!


    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      Tim wanted to field this one. "Hi, The Man with No panth! What a name! Big Jim sayth you better keep your panth on!"

      Big Jim flashed his badge, "Yeah or you are under arrest!"

      "Hey! he good man. Put that badge--"

      The following was too graphic to continue....

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image


      9 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      New reader, new fan here. We need you over yonder in my little corner. This was freaking genius my friend.


    • Reynold Jay profile imageAUTHOR

      Reynold Jay 

      9 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

      You got it. Thank you for being the first to stop by this timely HUB.

    • profile image

      Howard Schneider 

      9 years ago from Parsippany, New Jersey

      Excellent Hub Reynold. Gramm got this whole low tax, cut working class spending ball rolling. It is culminating now in our debt ceiling crisis which threatens our whole economy. Gramm and the current group are all bought and paid for by Corporate America. So this is what you get. Total ruin.


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