No government or other institution with as much regulatory power as possible can repeal human greed and fear.
You want me to provide you a blow by blow account of what happended from 1980 until 2008 of what decisions were made that did improve the operations of financial markets but human greed factored in and the good that was done collapsed because of greed.
I am not even going to comment on government regulators who are a joke SEC the Fed Treasury Department. Why do you think the largest donor to both political parties in the last two election cycles was financial institutions
If you are counting BIG Government and BIG Money Banks to cut a reasonable well though out deal you are insane. When these institutions get together the US taxpayer better reach for his wallet.
Also you do realize that the US government owns AIG and Citicorp. The deal that was cut by a certain Treasury Secty when he was president of the NY Fed to rescue AIG stinks to high heaven it is rotten and I would be pushing the House of Reps to prepare artcles of impeachment against him and the newly confirmed Fed Chairman
Finally I will give you a simple solution to these problems:
1. Abolish the FEDComment Posted By Kevin Brown On 17.02.2010 @ 21:30
2. Return to the gold standard of 1913 ie if no gold in vault we have no money to create with fractional reserve banking which makes Big Banks unable to become to Big to FAIL or BAIL
Once again a very meatty post on a topic that is near and dear to my heart as a CPA and a believer in Austrian economics whose principles I am sure you are familiar.
I would only say your diagonosis of the problem is overly simplistic which is true because you are writing an opinion piece not a treatise on the causes and consequences of the collapse of Lehman Brothers and AIG.
I understand that politics is at work as part of the blame game but the ignorant Congress and clueless President in financial matters and structures that were put into place over 3 decades to construct and created financial products and services that no one understood or understands.
If you want to get a good flavor of what the financial geniuses were upto and how greed and avarice trumped common sense and reason, I would pick up a copy of When Genius Failed by Roger Lowenstein. It is an excellent summary of whatis happening today. It conncerns the rise and fall of the hedge fund Long term capital management in 1998 which collapsed because of uncontrolled speculative trades on derivatives.
Bottom line to say financial services is not regulated or evil Phil Gramm or the repeal of Glass Steagall is the cause of all our problems misses the mark entirely. I think you are understating the contribution of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to the current situation. They have a huge roll in this disaster as well as the large investment banks and banks like Citigroup and Goldman Sachs.
The point is the big institutions like governemnt and banks and investement banks srewed the pooch and pushed the world into a Great Depression just will not seem as bad as the 1930s, but as they say history does not repeat itself but it rhymes.Comment Posted By Kevin Brown On 17.02.2010 @ 14:32
I think the sucker slapping has already taken place. When the Feds took our tax money (the underwater mortgage folks) and gave it to the irresponsible banks. These same banks are now making record profits using our hard earned money. Who is holding the bag here? Your moralizing is ridiculous to say the least.Comment Posted By kevin brown On 5.02.2010 @ 03:01
...in his heart, I really think he wants to change Washington, change government, and by doing so, change the country. That’s what he was elected to do. That is the broad mandate he possessed this time last year when he took the oath of office.
After the 2008 campaign and President Obama's firs year in office, you think this or you are hoping that it is true.
I do not live in Illinois and have no connection to the ways of politics in Chicago but I read the thoughts of another blogger who lives near Chicago who describes the Daly machine as the "Squid" and the President was part of the machinery of the Daly machine. Perhaps he was "going along to get along", but the characters around him suggest he knows where the bodies are buried.
Turning to the substance of the speech and the policies implemented, when has the President implemented anything and stuck around long enough to see it through besides the current health care plan and climate change?
He is becoming a disaster as President and as I have said before the options to replace him in 2012 are thin.Comment Posted By Kevin Brown On 28.01.2010 @ 13:57
I think we need to start a new topic comparing and contrasting the Carter administration vs the Obama administration because that appears to be the next discussion point that will coming down the tracks.
His upcoming State of the Union will be interesting to see how much blame he takes for the current state of our union. Will he invoke the Gerald Ford model? More likely we will hear about how things happened that he did know about and did have enough information and do not blame me.
As far as the future namely 2012 assuming the current trends stay in place a big if I concede. Who in any of the two major parties has the ability to replace the current President if necessary? I cannot think of anyone offhand and that is my biggest worry.Comment Posted By Kevin Brown On 26.01.2010 @ 13:33
I agree with your post about how cutting taxes only has a limited impact these days. Reagan had the benefit of marginal tax rates of 70% to cut so his cuts diverted money from government into the private sector and certainly stirred the boom of the 1980s with Paul Volker's help.
I do think you should concede that the tax cuts of Ronald Reagan of the 1980s and John Kennedy's of the 1960s benefitted the country immensely. On another note I think we should also praise the enconomic genius of Calvin Coolidge and Andrew Mellon who implemented the the same policies in the 1920s. It was Hoover who increased taxes and regulations in the 1930s before FDR came along.
As far as pragmatic, I live in California and worst Senator of all time is up for reelection next year (Barbra Boxer for those lucky enough to live outside CA) I would vote for Mao Tse Sung or Nelson Rockefeller if it meant getting rid of Boxer.
So yes I can be pragmatic. 2012 is way far off and my biggest fear is the Barak Obama is a disaster and no reasonable alternative exists.Comment Posted By Kevin Brown On 18.11.2009 @ 20:58
I am a Republican and have been since I registered to vote in 1992. I have a libertarian philosophy, but I do not like 3rd parties because their impact is not winning elections but driving one of the two major parties in their direction. When third parties do run they tend to hurt the Republican party more than the Dems (although that depends on what level ie 2006 MT Senate or 2000 WA Senate vs 2000 Presidential level). However, the reality is the tea party movement is real and disorganized because it is grassroots and is looking to be absorbed by a larger structure.
My guess that since the Repubs are out of power they will harness this wave and try ride it as far as it goes. I am not sure how this marriage will work out beyond 2010 but it should be sufficient to serve as a platform for big Republican comeback. Now the governing impact will be interesting. Will the fact that the Chairman of the Republican party has tied the hands of the politicians to do anything related to enttilement reform cause trouble because of the tea party to reduce govt expenditures. I do not know but we will both there to watch it.Comment Posted By Kevin Brown On 2.11.2009 @ 16:59
No large institution can plan for every contingency.
Stuff happens. I am not going to blame Obama for this because he was clearly not involved in this at all. Because you see he has been overseeing other important aspects of the operation of our government over these last nine months. He has worked so hard and focused like a laser beam on the most pressing issues of the day.
I do not understand your sarcasm Rick I mean President Obama I am sure cares a lot about this matter and I am sure he gave a speech on the very import of swine flu and ordered His Administration to cooperate and work together to ensure that everything went according to plan.
I myself and rather pleased that he is taking his time on deciding on troops in Afganistan given the track record of his decsion making so far.
But I am sure that the prior administration made things so dysfunctional at CDC and HHS that President Obama was unable to bring the staff into line in time. I know what it was why did I not think of this these snafus took place because President Obama lacked a Vaccine Czar and you know his original choice for HHS Secty did not pay his taxes and I am that this was a concoction of Karl Rove and GWB you know like a new roadside IED that was installed in DC on or about January 20 2009Comment Posted By Kevin Brown On 26.10.2009 @ 20:19
I am surprised that find the recent lack of civility amongst political supporters of each party so shocking. It is all part of the dumbing down and hypercompetitive nature of commentary on the internet (present website exempted). I ask you a rhetoricla question other than the topic discussed what is the difference between giving President Obama the "Rasberry" on his Olympic bid efforts for Chicago and what happens on the certain ESPN sport team sites? The difference is not much.
I must admit I was glad to hear his effort came to naught because it is about time that he learned that there is more to being president than just giving speeches. You need to legislate and bring others to your side which takes a lot more effort than just giving speeches. I am sorry to say President Obama has demonstrated his total lack of experience for the job from day one and I have to hope that these are first year jitters like President Clinton who got the hang of it at a certain level. Of course President Clinton had so much more elective office experience to draw on. President Obama has in the immortal words of his Secretary of State "a memorable speech and that is it"
On the other hand Presidents do grow in office President Clinton was not the same after OKC and I can assure you that GWB was not the same after 9/11/01.
I am not wishing for another case like the above to servce as an example of growth and development I am just very worried with President Obama that his first impression is his best impression and that is it. He has not wowed with his skills as President. He appears much better at running than governing.Comment Posted By Kevin Brown On 14.10.2009 @ 18:02
Once again I seem to be missing the point of your concerns with intellecutal conservatism vs movement conservatism. I guess I am somewhere in the middle since I remember WFB on Firing Line and editing NR and Ronald Reagan being President.
I remember the complaints about Ronald when he was President that he was compromising with the Dems because of whatever reason was in vogue at the time.
However, we must always keep in mind the politicians need to govern and make the trains run on time and deal with the government that exists while in office.
On that note I think you deny credit to practical politicians on the Right like Bill Thomas and for a time Rick Santorum. These two were two of the prime public movers behind Welfare reform the and Medicare Presription Drug Benefit expansion. I think they serve as two examples of conservative governance in action and problem solving at work. Welfare reform actually reduced recipients admittedly the booming economy in the late 90s played a role. Also despite the flaws in the way the legislation was passed the Prescription Drug benefit is one of GWB crowning domestic achievements along with cutting capital gain rates to 15%
BTW I do believe he would have achieved more sucess with No Child Left Behind had he operated in the political environment of 2003 rather than 2001/2002 but that is a debate for another time.
I have no idea why compromise with the Obama admin and the popular left is evern considered. Rick these are not our Father's Democrats. We can do a deal with John Brezux Bill Nelson Joe Libermann and Diane Feinstein but the Netroot ninnies with Nancy Pelosi etc. I cannot think of a powerful conservative Dem in the House. Perhaps they will emerge if they survive the Republican backlash after 2010. This is all specualtion at this point we will seeComment Posted By Kevin Brown On 7.10.2009 @ 16:10
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