Saturday, September 20, 2008

Pakistan Burns--(Wall Street too)

In the light of this terrible news from Islamabad (CNN) a number of links seem to be worth sharing (via Slate).

First, the role of the Pakistani intelligence service in bringing together Osama bin Laden and the Afghan Taliban, from Ken Silverstein.

Christopher Hitchens: Pakistan is the Problem and Only Barack Obama Seems to be the Only Candidate Willing to Face It

Fred Kaplan: The Long Road to Fixing Afghanistan Winds Through Pakistan

Many reports from the Pakistani Blogosphere are to be found at Bloggers Pakistan

On the US Financial Crisis:

Dr. Robert Reich (University of California at Berkeley and Labor Secretary of President Clinton) thinks that the Bailout of All Bailouts is a Bad Idea and presents what he says is a better alternative:
But there's no reason taxpayers need to be involved in this.

Whether you call it a reorganization under bankruptcy or just a hellova fire sale, the process should resemble chapter 11 under bankruptcy. Any big financial institution that wants to clear its books can opt in. But the price for opting in is this: Investors in these institutions lose the value of their equity. Executives lose the value of their options, and their pay (and the pay of their directors) is sharply limited. All the money from the fire sale goes to making creditors as whole as possible.
Hmmm, can this really work? Dr. Reich concludes with, "I repeat: This isn't a crisis of solvency or liquidity; it's a crisis of trust."

On Bloomberg TV, Princeton professor and NYT pundit Paul Krugman says we are witnessing the socialization of the US financial system, "Comrade Paulson has seized the commanding heights in the name of the masses."

WHY AIG was too big to fail, from Barry Ritholz of Fusion IQ. Also from The Big Picture is this enumeration of the high points in the New, New Deal

- Bear Stearns
- Economic Stimulus progam
- Housing Bailout Program
- Fannie & Freddie
- No Short selling rules
- Fed liquidity programs (Term Lending facility, Term Auction facility)
- Money Market fund insurance program
- Special Loans for GM & Ford
- New RTC type program

If Paulson was a real man, he'd nationalize the winners, not the losers. Why not take over the big oil comapnies? That's where the money is. To hell with the dopes who can't win at capitalism like the broker-dealers and mortgage banks. All they'll bring us is losses. The only fair thing for America is to take over the money-makers to pay for the mistakes of the losers. Take over Berkshire to pay for AIG. Paulson is not half the man Hugo Chavez is... you don't see Hugo doing dumb stuff like Hank does.
After this past week's near-death experience for Wall Street, where the heck is Econblogger when we really need him to explain all this??


UP n student said...

The Wall Street Journal opines about the AIG/Lehman crisis, the scapegoating, and need for solid leadership.

UP n student said...

Food for thought --- that Dubya is has escalated find-and-destroy Osama-Bin-Laden military action in order to earn pogi points for his legacy.
The Sept. 3 attack was the first significant cross-border U.S. ground strike without prior Pakistani approval — a change approved by President Bush in July.

Robert Baer, a former CIA field officer assigned to the Middle East, warns that the US risks a war with Pakistan with its unilateral actions driven by wishful thinking more than new intelligence. Baer's conclusion :
Before it is too late, someone needs to sit the President down and give him the bad news that Pakistan is a bridge too far in the "war on terror.",8599,1841649,00.html?imw=Y&loomia_si=t0:a3:g2:r3:c0.121682