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Slate: Warren all but nominated to head new bureau

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Elizabeth Warren

Slate’s Timothy Noah last night reported that Elizabeth Warren’s nomination to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is a done deal. The real question, Noah says, is whether President Obama will send her through the normal Senate confirmation process — where she is sure to face hostility from conservatives who think she’s an anti-Wall Street radical — or install her with a recess appointment.

Warren could get tied up in the normal nomination procedures, with partisanship running extremely hot these days and even Democrats like Chris Dodd doubting her chances of confirmation. But a recess appointment would only give her a year or so at the job — far shorter than the five years she’d get through a regular confirmation, and hardly enough time to get anything done.

Noah also points out that Warren’s never managed anything close to this new bureau, and because of that we can’t even know how effective of a manager she might be. And one of Noah’s sources on Warren also appears to be a master of understatement when asked about the Harvard law professor’s style:

Does she know how to schmooze a grumpy Republican? “I wouldn’t call her schmoozy.”

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The Elizabeth Warren rap

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Elizabeth Warren thinks there's two types of people in this world. Those who write regulations on banks and credit unions with more than $10 billion in assets, and those who enforce them. You enforce them.

You know what comes to my mind when I think of Elizabeth Warren, the left’s favorite to be the first director of the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau? Rap music. And Sergio Leone-esque spaghetti westerns.

So you can imagine my joy when I stumbled upon this video, from the consumer protection group Main Street Brigade, which is a strong supporter of Warren and Obama’s financial reform efforts. “Got a New Sheriff” combines rapping, auto-tuned lyrics, and Ennio Morricone-inspired whistling, resulting in something that’s … er … unique, to say the least. Unless I’m sorely mistaken, this is the first rap song ever made backing the appointment of a federal official. (Although Don Rumsfeld’s press conferences-slash-poems were set to music back in 2004.)

Still no word from the White House on whether the controversial Warren will get the nod to head the agency that is largely her brainchild. The WaPo last week had a profile on her that’s got some good background, but kind of gives short shrift to the debate over her qualifications.

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H/t: Salon’s How the World Works

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It’s all about the (new) Benjamins

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Gordon Gekko would probably shed a tear at this promotional video released by the government today.  For just over a minute, the video lavishes attention on a new $100 bill rolled out today, as Ben Franklin’s famous visage soars and gyrates around the screen and inspirational music plays in the background.

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The video highlights in big blue letters the bill’s new security features: a 3-D security ribbon, a portrait watermark, a security thread, color-shifting numerals and a “bell in the inkwell,” whatever that means.

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