Is it me…
…. or have we all gone stark, staring mad!
Sorry, in a bit of a rant mood just now.
I read widely many Blogs out there because it seems that this channel is one which is more likely to offer real, valid commentaries on what is going on at present with regard to the economic crisis, that is the crisis in the broader sense.
Regulation remains largely ineffective (in fact, the industry has managed to demonize the word), the big banks are too important to fail, and interest rates are low across the yield curve. The Fed provides downside protection and there is no effective limit on the amount or nature of risks that the private financial sector can take. This is a recipe not for stagnation but rather for a metaboom in which we will receive warnings, including painful recessions – but consistently ignore them.
The 1920s opened with an 18-month recession, an eerie parallel to the 2007-9 experience. It ended with the Great Crash of 1929.
Then across the way we have a piece on The Daily Beast about Summers. I quote from the first two paragraphs with their permission (thanks guys.)
Washington is swirling with the usual rumors—the White House’s man was pushed! He jumped! But Summers is leaving because he made sure real reform was discussed—but not accomplished.
The rumor that come November, when the mid-term elections are history, Lawrence Summers, administration’s quarterback on economic matters, will leave the White House, has been confirmed. The usual presumptions have been put in play: Summers is weary of the job; the president and his men and women feel the need for a new pair of hands under center; the man has done well; the man has done badly. There is no indication that, like Bush II’s ill-served first Treasury Secretary, Paul O’Neill, Summers is being canned for speaking truth to power. That is not the man’s style, not—let it be said—that there’s much evidence that the administration has better than a shaky grasp of the practical truths of American financial and economic life in the Age of Goldman Sachs.The bottom line is that we can expect the usual judgemental blahblahblah to grow in volume and marginality on the talk-show and Op-Ed circuit as the day calendared by the media for Summers’ leave-taking approaches.
Now go across to the article and read it in full. Read why Michael Thomas, the author and no stranger to Wall St., describes Summers as someone who “saw to it that the talk was talked, but the walk was never walked.“
And I’ll close by repeating a comment I made to the Baseline Scenario article:
I don’t have the knowledge to respond to Simon’s excellent Post in detail but his comments reinforce what feels like a constant throbbing in my mind – how can the citizens of so many countries have abdicated so much interest and concern in how they/we are governed. Wish I had even a clue as to the answer to that question.
Significant social unrest would be very scary – the ‘law’ of unintended consequences and all that – but there are times when I wonder if this, in the end, might be the only form of real progress for the hard-working, tax-paying majority.
End of rant!
By Paul Handover