Senate Banking Committee Chairman Phil Gramm is a reliable quote machine, but the Texas Republican outdid himself last week with a prodigious series of comments on wide-ranging topics.

On freedom: At a hearing Tuesday on granting China more favorable trade relations, Sen. Gramm commented on a passage from Thomas Friedman's The Lexus and the Olive Tree suggesting economic globalization promotes stability and democracy. According to the book, no two countries that have McDonald's franchises have ever gone to war.

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