QUOTE OF THE DAY…. Most of the time, if I refer readers to a clip from a congressional hearing, it’s not necessary to include a “not safe for work” reference. But there are notable exceptions.

Take today, for example, when Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) grilled former Goldman Sachs partner Daniel Sparks, who led the firm’s mortgages department, at a hearing of the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.

Reading from an internal firm email, Levin confronted Sparks: “‘Boy, that Timberwolf was one shitty deal.’ How much of that shitty deal did you sell to your clients after June 22, 2007?”

Sparks said he didn’t know, but the price would have reflected any concerns about value. Levin wasn’t persuaded: “But you didn’t tell them you thought it was a shitty deal.” Sparks noted that those words weren’t from an email he wrote, to which Levin responded, “No. Who did? Your people. Internally. You knew it was a shitty deal and that’s what your email shows.”

It actually got worse from there. Levin pointed to a long list of examples of Goldman making sales of this “shitty deal” a “top priority” after it already been assessed as garbage. “Should Goldman Sachs be trying to sell a shitty deal?” the Democratic senator asked. “Can you answer that one yes or no?”

Sparks, not surprisingly, hedged.

The rest of the hearing hasn’t gone much better.

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.