Tuesday, September 30, 2008


The House conservatives who sank the bailout didn’t do so because they were listening to loud and angry voices. They sank the plan by accident. They were trying to double-cross the Democrats. First, they wrung lots of concessions out of Democrats at the negotiating table as the price for delivering 80 votes. Then, by not delivering 80 votes and forcing Pelosi to pass the bill as a partisan Democratic bill, they were going to wage a demagogic anti-bailout campaign. But Pelosi refused to be played for a sucker and so the conservative inadvertently sank a bill that, all evidence suggests, they actually wanted to pass. They just wanted to vote “no” on it for short-term political gain.

Getting rolled by Nancy freaking Pelosi is the final indignity for the GOP. If Matt's right with this, I mean.

And of course playing political chicken with financial armageddon in the balance is probably in poor taste. That said, I'm glad the bill died on Monday, since by all accounts it really is a big giveaway that won't solve the fundamental problem--see Yves. Of course Paulson's going back to try and get this particular bill done again, without explaining what the problem is (of course not, then he'd have to come up with a plan that wasn't a giveaway.)

By the way--I've always been curious if hedge funds contribute anything of real value to the economy, or if we'd even notice if they and their gallons of wealth disappeared. I guess we find out tomorrow!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

AND PONTIUS PELOSI SAID TO THE CROWD, "WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE PASS UPON YOU: A BAILOUT, OR A DEPRESSION THAT SHALL BE CALLED GREAT?" AND THE CROWD SAID, "FREE MARKETS!!!11!: Pelosi to give everyone a day to decide if they like the final bailout bill or not. If a bill gets done, that is.

Yes, I am moving into the "something must be done fairly quickly" camp. Too many people (Roubini, Krugman, Buffett) saying we're in it deep this time.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

OH LIKE LAUTENBERG EVEN KNOWS HOW TO WORK A FAX MACHINE: But if he did he'd be seeing this totally state-of-the-art Krugmanny bit of US American democracy:

I’m one of your constituents, and I want to urge you to not vote for any version of the bailout plan that does not involve an exchange of equity for taking troubled assets off a bank’s books. This is close to what Sweden did when they were going through a similar crisis to our own, and I think it would work much better than the massive cash dump Chairman Bernanke and Secretary Paulson are proposing. The Chairman and the Secretary seem to think the crisis is one of confidence, and if we just pump more money into the banks things will turn around. I do not think they are right. We are in the midst of a massive deflation of the housing market and no amount of emergency lifelines from the Federal Reserve will change that. I think Congress will be serving the nation much more effectively if they offer banks the chance to exchange equity for their bad assets. This will ensure that the banks that are in trouble receive help—at a price—without simply giving money away. I believe this was how Sweden dealt with their crisis; it was painful, but it dealt with the crisis quickly. The alternative model is Japan’s, which propped up their failing banks for far too long and lost a decade of economic growth because of it, that they even now have not fully recovered from. I do not think that needs to happen here.

Thank you.

Hurray! My vote counts! Or something. Anyway--as far as I can tell the housing bubble is deflating no matter what. Tossing money at banks who may not even need it is not going to help.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

ADMIRAL ACKBAR, A LONELY NATION TURNS ITS EYES TO YOU: Please, Democrats. Don't fall for it.

(Harry Reid said somewhere that they had no idea what to do. They should stick with that.)

Sunday, September 21, 2008


Monday, September 15, 2008

AH, THE ECONOMY: At this point it's hard to do anything besides sitting back and watching the carnage.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

MY FINAL WORD ON THE AMERICAN PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION AS OF TODAY: I just don't think this is the year where stupid shit like moose hunting is going to work.

And at this point I should probably just secede from the blog reading community as I do have stuff (ugh) to worry about. But I probably won't.