What a short memory this country has, and it seems to be getting shorter every year. It was only two and a half years ago that the economy was falling off a cliff, and a major contributing factor to the crisis were the credit rating agencies, like Standard & Poor's, that had given AAA ratings to junk, including those mysterious collateralized debt obligations.
My first reaction was that this was a manipulation of our political process by a financial company. When I looked up S&P on Wikipedia, there is a claim that the company did exactly that in Ireland a couple of years ago:
In April 2009 Standard & Poor's called for "new faces" in the Irish Government, which was seen as interfering in the democratic process. In a subsequent statement they said they were "misunderstood".