Whatever one thinks of the panic (either as a localized problem in the financial sector or a prelude to a global economic meltdown), it has done what the Korean colony's nuclear antics (CNN and One Free Korea) could not do - distract attention from the melamine fiasco (Epoch Times), to say nothing of more recent reports of fraud (Epoch Times) and repression (World Net Daily).
The initial Congressional refusal to approve the Wall Street bailout meant even more time when these pesky problems would stay away from the spotlight, but it also meant that Congress would remain in session past its expected adjournment. That could mean a welcome surprise for anti-Communists everywhere: approval of the U.S.-India nuclear deal (Washington Times):
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, said Tuesday he was close to
an agreement to let debate proceed on the controversial pact, which U.S. officials see as the centerpiece of new strategic alliance with one of the world's emerging economic and military powerhouses.
"I'm quite sure that we can finalize [an agreement] so that there can be a vote on that tomorrow," said Mr. Reid.
Over the objections of opponents who said the pact would undercut global efforts to restrain nuclear proliferation, the House passed the India agreement in a 298-117 vote Saturday. But it was not clear that the Senate would have time to act until lawmakers were kept in session to deal with the Wall Street credit crisis.
In other words, the Wall Street shenanigans will give Congress enough time to cement the emerging U.S.-India alliance.
The further context of this is equally damning for Beijing: increasing concern within the American military about the buildup of the so-called People's Liberation Army (Forbes, Washington Times, and Yomiuri Shimbun), further exposure of the Long Arm of Lawlessness (Epoch Times), the nomination of Hu Jia for the Nobel Peace Prize (Epoch Times), and the continuing focus on Tibet (Epoch Times and more Epoch Times).
At the very least, the Wall Street brouhaha was supposed to make the United States look bad, make the cadres look good by comparison, and as I said earlier, distract attention from a host of troubles. It was not supposed to accidentally allow Washington and New Delhi to move closer together.
Yet that appears to be exactly what it will do. I guess Bismarck's adage will be proven true once more!