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  • Populist Politics Shouldn't Be Driving Financial Reform [View article]
    I realize that Washington makes the most stupid laws conceivable, like Sarbanes-Oxley, in supposed response to a problem. It is easy to cite the most moronic laws and ideas possible to discredit reform because Washington is full of those and makes the very word "reform," suspect.
    You say "it (the collapse) was made out to be worse in places than it actually was by some with specific vested interests to enact populist political reforms which would end up giving them the upper political hand." I am more concerned that the specific vested interest, Wall St., extracted $trillions from the collapse after shaping the laws that led to it. I believe they are now lying to diminish the scope of the problems we face. Trust them?
    The point about economists makes no sense to me as they have supported status quo generally and have been useful tools to lead us, in "saner times" to these insane times.
    Cautious Investor has a nice list of reforms. As Michael Clark notes, the bad ideas and and insincere advocates out there shouldn't discredit the whole, crucial, effort to reform Wall St.
    Sep 11, 2009. 08:53 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • SEC vs. BofA: Will Judge Rakoff Call Another Hearing? [View article]
    "BAC claims it didn't mislead investors because they should have known Merrill's people would be bonused." Heck, even Senator Dodd didn't assume that when he wrote protections for those bonuses in legislation. But, he is more acclimated to the alternate reality of Wall St. and Washington in which he is a prime perpetrator.
    Giving bonuses to Wall St. that exceed their profits over the last ten years and continuing that practice with taxpayer bailouts requires nerve that could lead to entirely new fields of study on sociopaths. At least Judge Rakoff is providing one of the few real green shoots in this case so far.
    Sep 11, 2009. 07:02 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's the U.S.'s Energy Policy? [View article]
    Mr. Chu, what has the Energy Department doing to earn one dime of the tens of $billions it has received every year since the mid-70's to achieve it's stated goal of energy independence?
    Nope, it's time for carbon caps, socialized healthcare and any other dysfunctional way the government can enter new domains of American life to impose it's artificial reality and screw up on a monumental scale.
    Sep 11, 2009. 06:48 AM | 14 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Housing Bottom - Oh Really? [View article]
    It looks to me like an important remedy, cramdown for mortgages by judges, as used in other types of loans, is vitally needed to goad lenders into constructive action. This remedy, modifying the terms including principal of mortgages, was passed over as are most helpful measures for regular citizens. Our government is expensive and burdensome, yet inert at best when it comes to the interests of ordinary American that actually accomplish relief that our bailout $trillions haven't.
    Wall St. and large banks are content to sit on the fortunes Washington has bequeathed them from our grandkids because with that, and the new gift of mark-to-magic accounting, keeps them "solvent" and paying bonuses right now, thank you very much.
    Not only are epic numbers of CRE and alt-A resets coming now, but we have a low interest-rate environment that may explode when the world and reality hits the dollar and drives interest rates skyward to attract any value to it at all.
    Sep 11, 2009. 06:42 AM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is JP Morgan Too Big to Survive? [View article]
    Thanks for another revealing look and background on the duplicity of Wall St. and Washington. Perhaps recent Chinese rumblings of not upholding their end of some swaps would be relevant?
    Sep 10, 2009. 07:31 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • What's My Payment? [View article]
    Besides the necessary downsizing of the unaffordable consumer economy, I hopefully await the downsizing of unaffordable, bloated government.
    Sep 10, 2009. 04:57 PM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Criticize the Fed and Die [View instapost]
    As one who has loudly noted the lockstep tendencies of economists to make pronouncements from on high divorced from the real world, reading of this coercion, no, bludgeoning, from the Fed really helps put the pieces together. Economists have an even larger reason than I thought to avoid truth.
    Sep 10, 2009. 11:05 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Foreclosures: They're Not Just for Breakfast Anymore [View article]
    The solution is cramdown. I believe the option exists for judges to impose cramdown on most other types of debt, in bankruptcy. Along with prescient, onerous bankruptcy provisions, '05, $trillions and mark-to-magic accounting lenders have secured for themselves, they have kept cramdowns out of legislation this year.
    Sep 10, 2009. 10:39 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Consumer Credit Sees Record Plunge: Need Another Indicator? [View article]
    This is easily a far larger bursting bubble than the Depression, thanks to a completely fiat Fed dollar which has enabled incredible bad decisions of consumer debt and gargantuan, unaffordable government. And, the incredible leverage of Wall St. And even more incredibly, bailouts for them and the political hacks of Washington which do nearly nothing to put money in regular people's hands. They reinflate only the stock market and shred any hope of a safety net left for average Americans.
    Sep 10, 2009. 06:29 AM | 22 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • A Tale of Two Inflations [View article]
    Like cockroaches, the lists of policymaker mistakes, while clearly huge at first glance, multiply at further glances. Here we see that relying on misguided government consumer inflation statistics to gauge actual inflation is even stupider than it looks at first glance. Domestic rises were hidden by import deflation. Why? Can so many people at that payscale actually be so dumb?
    Sep 10, 2009. 05:05 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • On Disclosure, Honesty, Ethics, and Outright Lies: Who can you trust these days? [View instapost]
    Have to love those off-balance-sheet items. The US government has plenty also. Our leaders leave us ticking time bombs everywhere, but, hey, trust them. Look at their track records!
    Sep 10, 2009. 01:46 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Has the Government's Effort Failed? [View article]
    Bit by bit the lid must come off, but, as you say, "under much less benign circumstances" the longer we wait.
    Our leaders have a vested interest in postponement. They got the first 2 $trillion bailouts to Wall St., the next to political hacks ("stimulus"). They would like to make it past the next election. Insiders are selling stock like crazy. They all benefit immeasurably with their inordinate insider privileges and incomes by a continuation of the farce as long as possible.
    Some of this has to be criminal, especially as the lying continues. As this gets even more surreal and difficult, martial law added to their control of MSM and paid-off politicians might not be so surprising.
    Sep 9, 2009. 12:20 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Five Questions About Government's Role in the Mortgage Business [View article]
    Home ownership was once touted as a crown jewel of the rewards of capitalism in the US. Now it is emblematic of self-absorbed, mediocre leadership, entitlement politics and generally, the corner we've painted ourselves into. It requires endless deficit financing at the public trough to replace the failed financial sector which also is at the public trough.
    Like Iraq and Afghanistan, there is no end game at all here. I see no chance other than for endless government meddling and growth imposed on an increasingly pauperized citizenry as we forget how to produce for what we earn more completely, with each step we're taking.
    Sep 9, 2009. 11:49 AM | 11 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Yahoo Insiders Should Be Shown the Door Out [View article]
    Typical business-by-MBA. Remember how Apple nearly died under John Sculley, previously Pepsi CEO, using that approach? Those people manage within a short-term bell-curve that their peers would approve of and, like most of our leaders, politicians especially, couldn't find a good idea other than snatch-and-grab, if it dropped on their head.
    They've hollowed out the whole country now. The rats are taking the last of the cheese.
    Sep 9, 2009. 11:13 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Coming Consequences of Banking Fraud [View article]
    Fraud as far as the eye can see, but, as the stock market has been propped up since March, can low interest rates be maintained for awhile during a decline in the dollar and rising commodities to force people to risk, and thus, rising stock markets with volume for awhile? I imagine this would be the "jobless recovery" that would not be a recovery for Main St. at all, but carry through the next election, facilitating the election/reelection of frauds-as-usual and even worse problems for the future.
    Sep 9, 2009. 10:45 AM | 33 Likes Like |Link to Comment