On a knife edge

The failure of Washington Mutual is a preview of what might be in store for the US financial system if politicians can't agree on a bailout package.

The failure of Washington Mutual – the largest bank failure in US history by a very large measure – demonstrates that the US financial system, and probably the global system, is now balanced on a knife edge, with presidential hopeful John McCain apparently, and unwittingly, doing his best to topple it.

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