Category Archives: Politics

Great Moments in Political Rhetoric: Hannan vs Brown

From the European parliament, of all places: (Via MAI, although I’m late to this, it’s been viewed almost 2 million times on YouTube already.)

Posted in Politics | 6 Comments

The Kanjorski Meme, Mark II

Tyler Cowen is now talking about the Kanjorski Meme Mark I (I thought I’d dealt with that one already) — but that’s not the end of the story, as Sam Jones demonstrates today. Sam has what you might call the … Continue reading

Posted in bonds and loans, Politics | 2 Comments

The Tragedy of Political Reality

I taped a Bloggingheads diavlog with Jesse Eisinger this afternoon, which should go up on Monday. We ended up in a pessimistic place: a Japanese outcome to this economic and financial crisis seems much more likely than a Swedish outcome, … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

Kanjorski and the Money Market Funds: The Facts

With the Kanjorski Meme still spreading (see Ben Smith, Andrew Leonard, Moldbug, and more), I think I’m finally able to squash it with some hard figures: there never was a $500 billion outflow from any asset class in the space … Continue reading

Posted in Media, Politics | 1 Comment

The Kanjorski Meme

This is the way that memes propagate: after appearing on LiveLeak and being picked up by Zero Hedge (twice), Paul Kedrosky, and Clusterstock, it hit BoingBoing, and now it’s everywhere: Panzer, Alphaville, SAR, the Economist, you name it. I’ve been … Continue reading

Posted in Media, Politics | 1 Comment

Lobbying Datapoint of the Day

The Center for Responsive Politics does some adding up, and concludes that the 300 TARP recipients between them spent a total of $77 million last year on lobbying, on top of $37 million in federal campaign contributions, for a total … Continue reading

Posted in banking, Politics | 1 Comment

Summers vs Volcker

I didn’t like the idea of appointing Larry Summers to be Treasury secretary, largely because he’s bad at politics. And given his jealous and petty spat with Paul Volcker now that he’s running the National Economic Council, the decision to … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

Geithner on China’s Currency Manipulation

Tim Geithner’s testimony about China’s currency manipulation is the top story in the world today, judging by the NYT’s front page. And he did indeed say three times in his written responses to the Senate Finance Committee that "President Obama … Continue reading

Posted in china, Politics | Comments Off

Geithner’s Written Responses to the Senate Finance Committee

Does Kentucky senator Jim Bunning read Market Movers? If not, we’re certainly thinking along very similar lines. If you scroll down to page 45 of the 102 pages (!) of written responses from Tim Geithner to the Senate Finance committee, … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

Does Geithner Know What He’s Going To Do?

I’ve been keeping an eye on Tim Geithner’s confirmation hearings this morning: they seem to be going pretty much according to plan — a ritual hazing followed by a certain confirmation. (The NYT and WSJ are live-blogging.) Geithner is suitably … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

More Arguments for Bank Nationalization

Why have shares in Barclays suddenly cratered? No one really knows, but it’s surely not a complete coincidence that the short selling ban on UK financials expired today. On the other hand, maybe Barclays shareholders were reading Willem Buiter, who … Continue reading

Posted in banking, Politics | 1 Comment

Will Bush Mention the Economy?

I just got a White House press release with excerpts from George W Bush’s farewell address to the nation tonight. He seems to have found the time to tell us that "America’s air, water, and lands are measurably cleaner," but … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 2 Comments

Geithner, Taxed

The blogosphere is rumbling about Tim Geithner and his back taxes: Henry Blodget has even put up a post with the headline "Geithner Tax Scandal Threatens To Derail Confirmation". Er, no, it doesn’t. As Blodget himself admits, it’s (a) not … Continue reading

Posted in Politics | 1 Comment

Warren vs Treasury, Cont.

I’m not quite sure what to make of the fact that Elizabeth Warren is shamelessly leaking her latest TARP oversight report all over the media — to the NYT, to the WSJ, even, on-camera, to Good Morning America. Doesn’t she … Continue reading

Posted in bailouts, Politics | 1 Comment

Obama’s Big Speech

I agree with pretty much everything in Barack Obama’s big speech today about his stimulus plan. And not (just) because I’m some kind of lefty: Alex Tabarrok feels much the same way, as does Evan Newmark. It’s necessarily vague, but … Continue reading

Posted in fiscal and monetary policy, Politics | 1 Comment

The Invisible Stimulus

This sounds to me like it’s been filtered through some kind of Obama-transition behavioral economics screen: The incoming administration is considering tax cuts of $1,000 for couples and $500 for individuals that will be delivered by reducing the tax withheld … Continue reading

Posted in economics, Politics | 1 Comment

Who Killed Frannie?

Bethany McLean, from her new perch at Vanity Fair, has delivered a 10,762-word magnum opus on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which spends most of its time giving a detailed history of what Hank Paulson called the "Holy War" between … Continue reading

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Bailouts: The Darling Approach

Robert Peston talks to UK finance minister Alistair Darling about the fateful week in October when the UK took the lead in terms of injecting massive amounts of capital into its banking system, in the process effectively nationalizing a large … Continue reading

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The White House vs the NYT, Economic Meltdown Edition

In what Mike Allen calls "an unusual double-header", the White House has issued both a 100-word statement and a longer 900-word rebuttal of Sunday’s big NYT feature on how George W Bush contributed to the housing crisis. What’s interesting to … Continue reading

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When Monetary Policy Is Fiscal Policy

Martin Wolf is good at startling sentences. Today he preps us with this left hook: As Robert Mugabe has shown, anybody can run a printing press successfully. Only to follow up with this right jab: At the zero-rate boundary, fiscal … Continue reading

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How TARP Funds will be Released

I’ve been looking for this all morning; many thanks to the NYT for finally clearing it up for me. How will Congress approve the $350 billion second tranche of TARP money, now that its legislative session is closed for the … Continue reading

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Free Marketeers for Wage and Price Controls

Jim Surowiecki effectively slaps down those — like Henry Blodget — who would blame the UAW for the collapse of the Detroit bailout plan: There are a couple of things to notice about this story. First, it has almost nothing … Continue reading

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This is Not Good

The WSJ reports that talks to save the automakers have broken down in the Senate, and that there will be no bailout. Once again, Congressional Republicans have killed an intiative backed by both the White House and the Democrats — … Continue reading

Posted in bankruptcy, Politics | Comments Off

Warren vs Treasury

Many thanks to Andrew Leonard, a more adept web surfer than I, for tracking down Elizabeth Warren’s incendiary report to Congress on the disbursement to date of TARP funds. Unfortunately, it’s not only a PDF, but it’s also one which … Continue reading

Posted in bailouts, Politics | Comments Off

The Goldman Munipal Conflict Non-Story Refuses to Die

Remember the silly ProPublica report about alleged Goldman Sachs conflicts of interest in California? ProPublica subsequently took its act on the road, and used exactly the same Goldman report to produce an almost-identical article about New Jersey, in the Newark … Continue reading

Posted in banking, journalism, Media, Politics | 3 Comments