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Nightline Host Terry Moran Tells Obama to "Just Fire" Bank CEOs

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

Obama was also on Nightline last night. Three sound bites here. The last one is the piece de resistance, talking to Terry Moran, the host. Terry Moran says, "You've been sounding some very dire warnings about the economy in recent days. How close do you think the country is to the kind of economic catastrophe that you're warning about?"

OBAMA: I'm constantly trying to, uh, to thread the needle between sounding alarmist but also letting the American people know the circumstances that we're in. We are in a perfect storm of financial, uh, problems and so this is a big, difficult situation. Now, uh, I think we've gotta keep perspective. Uh, we're not going through the Great Depression.

RUSH: That's the first time he said that. Most of the time he says "the worst economic time since the Great Depression" and it's going to get worse. "If we don't do my plan, we may never recover." You ever wonder why when Obama goes back and talks about the great economic collapses in the past, yet never mentions the recession of '81 and '82? There's a reason why he doesn't mention the recession of '81 or '82. The way we got out of it was tax cuts, supply side. Ronaldus Magnus. He cites FDR, which did not pull us out of the Depression. Next question... Well, they had this exchange about Obama's honeymoon, which of course we here at the EIB Network hijacked.

MORAN: Mr. President, you got no honeymoon.

OBAMA: Heh.

MORAN: Not a single Republican vote in the House on your first major piece of legislation.

OBAMA: Well, I'm getting a -- I'm getting a big honeymoon from the American people.

MORAN: Maybe you were too nice. If I'm a Republican senator or Republican congressman, I think you're a very nice guy, but maybe I don't have enough reason to fear you.

OBAMA: Heh-heh-heh-heh. Well, I'll tell you what. That accusation's... I think if I'm not mistaken was leveled at me a couple years ago, ummmm, and, uh, I'm going to be flying out on Air Force One in a little bit. So people shouldn't underestimate, uhhh, the -- the value of civility and -- and trying to get people to work together.

RUSH: Whatever the hell that means. Then there's this. This is an exchange about the CEOs and the banks. Now, this is Terry Moran who ABC News has judged to be informed, educated, sufficiently so to host a network program at night with a great brand and great legacy, Nightline.

MORAN: Why shouldn't you just fire the executives who wrecked these banks in the first place --

OBAMA: Mmm-hmm.

MORAN: -- and tanked the world's financial system in the process?

OBAMA: (chuckles) Keep in mind, though, there are a lot of banks that are actually pretty well managed. So what we want to do is to say, "If you're going to take money from the taxpayers, then you're going to be constrained in terms of how you give yourself compensation, and shareholders are going to be empowered." Uh, if you're not taking money then, you know, we'll let shareholders and boards of directors, uh, handle things as they, uh, generally have handled them.

RUSH: Exactly right, which is why these guys should not have taken the money in the first place. But it's the question. This is supposedly an informed and educated person who's capable of carrying the Ted Koppel legacy of Nightline: "Why don't you [the president] just fire these executives who wrecked these banks in the first place and tanked the world's financial system in the process?" Why don't...? The president fire CEOs? He wants the president to have that kind of power. Of course the premise of the question was all wrong. It was not the CEOs at Wall Street that tanked the banks, or the world economy. Again, it's Barney Frank, it's Bill Clinton, it's Chris Dodd, it's Fannie Mae, it's Freddie Mac, it's the Community Redevelopment Act! It's the new definition of "affordable housing": you give people who can't pay for them, houses. Folks, as I said, the media, they're not even curious anymore. There used to be at least curiosity. One of the reasons you went into journalism was because you were curious and you wanted to be the first to tell people the real truth. They're just activists now, and they're uninformed at the same time. Pure and simple.

END TRANSCRIPT

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