Dakinikat says this cartoon by Thomas Oliphant of the Boston Globe reminds her of something:
Mr. Oliphant should expect to get long, lecturing letters about the Holocaust, which he obviously has never heard of.
- The NYTimes still hates Kirsten Gillibrand. Now they are highlighting the work she did as a young attorney working for a firm representing Phillip Morris. Look, guys, this personal vendetta you have against Gillibrand is getting ridiculous. Caroline Kennedy didn’t get the job. Give it up already. Those who want to help Gillibrand out can contribute here.
- Paul Krugman (why aren’t you in the administration?) writes about where the finance industry went rogue on us in The Market Mystique. He knows what I described the other day is probably true: The MBA Lifestyle was born and exploded onto the scene in the 80′s. He also thinks we have to get rid of it:
As you can guess, I don’t share that vision. I don’t think this is just a financial panic; I believe that it represents the failure of a whole model of banking, of an overgrown financial sector that did more harm than good.
I don’t think the Obama administration can bring securitization back to life, and I don’t believe it should try.
Much discussion of the toxic-asset plan has focused on the details and the arithmetic, and rightly so. Beyond that, however, what’s striking is the vision expressed both in the content of the financial plan and in statements by administration officials. In essence, the administration seems to believe that once investors calm down, securitization — and the business of finance — can resume where it left off a year or two ago.
To be fair, officials are calling for more regulation. Indeed, on Thursday Tim Geithner, the Treasury secretary, laid out plans for enhanced regulation that would have been considered radical not long ago.
But the underlying vision remains that of a financial system more or less the same as it was two years ago, albeit somewhat tamed by new rules.
Now, if we could only get people like Paul to acknowledge that taxpayers have a right to protest instead of submitting quietly while the intellectuals and academics write sternly worded columns, maybe we could turn this baby around…
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