Just because you can't explain it doesn't mean it's not real.
Tourre's Syndrome: There are seven more Goldman deals similar to Abacus for which AIG wrote credit default swaps, according to Neil Barofsky, TARP special inspector general, who went on to single out Blackrock for scrutiny. Many others think there is a lot more fraud to be disclosed.
The Empire Stirkes Back: The IMF is trying to assume the mantle as the world's financial regulator, with it's first act being to levy taxes on banks' balance sheets and bonuses. Did I miss the election?
Creative Speaking Workshop: Some say that Mitch McConnell and the No! Band cannot possibly block financial reform in the face of the public's overwhelming desire to hobble the beast. But that ignores the right's ability to invent its own reality and to sell that invention to the public. They will claim that blocking reform is the best thing to do because Wall Street is in favor of reform. Don't try being rational, rationality is rationed.
Quoted: “I think it's more likely we don't do well from here,” Professor Robert Shiller on the housing market.
Which Devil? Bishop Paproacki, who blamed the devil for sexual abuse lawsuits (that's fine as long as the church gets blamed for the abuse) has been named Bishop of the Springfield, Illinois diocese. Paproacki feels “The settlement or award of civil damages is punishing the wrong people, namely the average parishioner or donor whose financial contributions support the church.” Huh?
Mirror Image: For centuries European Empires roamed the world, snatching up whatever resources they wanted. The the American Empire came along and bullied the world into selling it the resources it wanted. Now China is buying up needed resources – oil and land mostly. Someone should stop them!
Fine Distinction: A fine essay on trust, the kind you can buy and the kind that's priceless.
Stirred, Not Shaken: We were told, based on climate models based in turn on then current research, that while the Arctic ice would melt, and Greenland too, slowly, Antarctica was solid. And a good thing too, for if the Antarctic ice were to melt, the seas would rise 200 or more feet. Study of recently obtained ice cores has shown that even the vast East Antarctic Ice Sheet has melted before. At least three times, one of them quite abruptly.
Observation: Enron came up with a foolproof business model – blatantly steal billions, knowing that when caught the company will pay a few million in fines and the executives get to keep their compensation. Goldman Sachs watched and learned.
The Endless Summer: Declining tax revenues are not only shortening the school year, school districts around the country estimate that some 300,000 teachers will find their jobs eliminated at the end of the current term. Enjoy your vacation.
Connections: Networks that are robust on their own become prone to catastrophic failure when interconnected with other networks. Some are obvious – electrical systems, highways, water supplies, computer networks, financial systems. And the volcanic disruption of air transport has pointed out the dependence of foods, medicines, businesses and the global village on the interconnected air transport networks. The biggie: The globally interconnected communications systems.
School Daze: “...in this country you either sit down, shut up and do what you’re told, or you get diagnosed and drugged.”