Will Rogers: FDR explained “the banking crisis so clearly that even the bankers understood it.”

h/t Matt Stoller

That’s from an amazing podcast between Congressman Brad Miller and Dylan Ratigan, part of the Huffington Post/Dylan Ratigan series this week “No Way to Live”.  The Huffington Post is looking at how housing is crashing muni revenues, and on an unexpected trend of landlord-less tenants.
Below is a passage on how Rep. Miller saw the role of financial blogs.

DYLAN: Your thoughts – we mentioned Josh but there’s a whole string of folks who are both, I think, very well intentioned in terms of the most basic principles of fairness and equity in this country going back hundreds of years and also those who work more in the communications universe, the financial blogs and all the rest of it.  How important is everybody from Chris Whalen to Josh Rosner, to Zero Hedge and Naked Capitalism and the like?

REP. MILLER: Well, I read most of those.  Zero Hedge strikes me as – well, I read Naked Capitalism and of course I talk to Josh and I’ve dealt with Chris Whalen and the others and I usually get Chris Whalen and kind of filtered through Josh.  What I found when I first started working on this, there was some expertise available specifically on mortgages among consumer groups.  When the financial crisis hit, I couldn’t find anybody who could tell me anything because everyone who really knew what had happened in the financial system in the last 20 years hadn’t learned about it in school, they had been in the financial system.  So, I couldn’t find anybody who wasn’t part of the financial system to give me any expertise to work from.  I mean I was sitting at my home computer in September of 2008 reading a Wikipedia about credit default flops, and I’m one of the more conscientious members of the —

DYLAN: Right, you have a – you’ve got a historical investment in American housing finance.

REP. MILLER: So, if that’s how at sea I was, I mean I can tell you that nobody in Congress knew all that was going on, really had a clue what was going on and that was quite intentional.  They didn’t want us to have a clue.  I think we have now developed forces of expertise.  We have identified experts, economists, people like Josh, really a good number of folks.  The financial – the economics blogosphere as you mentioned has really come alive.  They know who the experts are.  It is possible to get help with something now that I can tell you two and a half years ago was just not available to anybody involved in politics who actually had a reform agenda.

Check out the podcast here…