Very shrewd analysis.... nicely put......
In reality the financial sector and the United States has only one option - Force ALL the TBTF banks to eat the losses they should have done in 2008.
As doing so will render BOfA, Citigroup, JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs instantly insolvent that approach will not be taken, instead the can will be kicked until it detonates and we face a "Greece moment" combined with probable hyper-inflationary collapse...
The market is already starting to price this in BTW, look at the pricing trend for Gold and Silver...
The United States of Argentina... change were getting...
Ms. Gelinas observations are valid. But the current accounts accrual deficit referenced pales in comparison to the generational transfer payment looming unfunded liabilities. Those are-thanks to Mr. Bush and Mr. Obama-no longer 4 decade issues. The first necessary step to restore confidence in the financial system is found there-not in the Fed. If the longer term liabilities are resolved it will make it vastly easier for the Fed to unwind, because it will not confront the tsunami effect of increased carrying charge and steep deficit acceleration.
Good solid informative article. The answer to our economic woes are so simple and so difficult to face when you know your world will end once you do. Courage? What courage?
TARP did keep us from a second great depression. I think all knowledgeable people agree to that. To deny that makes the rest of the article questionable. Please study the great depression to see who we got out of it. It wasn't by reducing the debt.
Nicole Gelinas states that..."They can admit that this debt isn’t worth much and allow the financial sector to bear the consequences."
One wonders if this might not have been the best choice all along. If followed, Then the Fed and Federal Government could have spent all its money in rapidly rebuilding the financial sector to that the rest of the economy would not have experienced a 'lost half decade' so far.
It seems like policy makers saved the ones who created this disaster rather than the ones hurt by this disaster.
The added costs of unneeded regulation, new entitlements and programs, and mandates such as 'green energy' are also having a negative effect on the American economy.
Something needs to change. At the least, policy makers and the 'Masters of the Universe' who created this mess should also experience the losses that have now been inflicted on many Americans and others throughout the world.
What qualifications-experience-responsibility does Nicole Gelinas have to write credibly about US macroeconomic policy??
Nicole Gelinas is a national treasure, the clarity and forcefulness of her writing is captivating.
Reading her makes hearing bad news a delightful experience. It is a little odd to enjoy reading about such a dismal state of affairs.
Her analysis of the employed consumer's thinking is dead on- it is as if she has read my mind, and my checkbook.
For example, my family has been making due with one too few cars (in LA- for over two years) because it is easier to pay for it with inconvenience than with cash. That is 24 straight months of no commission and no net profit to some dealership out there.
The same is true of employers. I am very fortunate to work for an exceptional marine services company, we are lean, mean, and growing. But new tugboats ain't cheap (10 million US at least), and neither are good crews to run them. There are a lot of deep pockets out there, but these days the smart money has really short arms.
Buy high. Sell low. Get re-elected.
The above leads to that we don't know if we are coming or going, and what to do?
Time does not always cure all!!!
Burying the bad debt is like burying neuclear waste. Eventually it will be uncovered but so long that the uncoverying of it will not be remembered, and that is what government wants to precipitate or create.
Because businesses do remember and hedge the eventual uncovery of this mess, they prepare for the eventualities and instead of investing their monies to create jobs, they hoard this money for the day of reckoning, and not enough jobs are being created.
In the mean time the Feds are printing money to hopefully help the economy and lower the interest rate to do like wise.
Wouldn't it be wiser to tell the truth and spend the money to help the unfortunate and get us out of this circus so that we can concentrate openly on what has to take place? That will get those hoarders to stop hoarding and start investing and keep the economy from falling on it's face?!!!
Jobs will be created and we will be starting to breeze fresh air again! The truth will set us free, if only we believe in it???
"Because of increased productive efficiency in the private sector, there will be limited private sector opportunities for workers with limited education and skills for the foreseeable future."
^^There is now limited opportunities for highly skilled workers. The respite for top educated workers who couldn't get into the private sector was the public sector. And now the public sector jobs are drying up.
The only way out of this recession is via the growth of entrepreneurships and small businesses.
Excellent article. You have disrobed the emperor. I have linked you at my blog.
Correct me if I'm wrong but while Hank Paulson
was looking for buyers of mortgage backed
securities, his brother was shorting them
and made a cool billion or so
Maybe Ms Gelinas could comment on this.
Sure reminds me of Japan's economic situation.
You (and most people) are making a fatal assumption: the assumption that Obama wants things better. What he wants are things to be "equal". Better implies success and the Modern Liberals/Progressives work to tear down success.
It's not wealth redistribution, but a tearing down of wealth. It's been happening but now the pace is much faster.
When Obama talks about sacrifice, what he meant is that we are all to sacrifice some of our wealth, jobs, happiness, etc. so we all can be "equal." And when Obama talked about hope, what he meant is that we are to hope that things don't get too bad.
Watch the video "How Modern Liberals Think" at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eaE98w1KZ-c to get an idea of what we are up against.
In 1930's Roosevelt asked the leading business men what to do - they had no idea!
You need someone that can master the Gordian knot because economics in actual prosecution is just to break the law and not be found out! That the experts pontificate is meaningless when everyone is bullshi#ing everyone else! One has forgotten Milo's War and the many economic crises of the past.
The best weapon for the economy and the Gordian knot is the Sward -- let the bastards die!
At the moment the "too big to fail" crowd has everyone over the barrel and that gives them the upper hand to continue doing mischief!
Economic actors hate uncertainty. That's why there's a market for both stocks and AAA bonds -- the trade between the expected payout and its variability. As long as no one has any idea what happens next, the most sensible thing anyone can do is sit on their cash.
Which will be fine, if we can right-size the size of the labor force who wants jobs.
Bad loans ? Who needs collateral when the Fed has got it covered ? Stop. At this point it's absurd, a ridiculous joke. No one needs an HBO special to see that the whole financial/political system is mismanaged and corrupt.
Under the current economic situation, with growing inequality of incomes, and lagging demand, the private sector has no incentive to create additional employment.
Cutting government expenditures under current conditions serves to drive down demand and employment.
Because of increased productive efficiency in the private sector, there will be limited private sector opportunities for workers with limited education and skills for the foreseeable future.
Mr. Manshel, "the only way to increase employment is to tax", is a bit hard to support as well isn't it? That in itself screams of an ideological position.
What data does Ms. Gelinas have to support this. The cause of the current employment lag is lack of demand. In an era of fabulous wealth creation among a very large group, the only way to increase employment is to tax those very substantial incomes in order to create jobs for the unemployed in building badly needed and underfunded infrastructure to support future economic growth. There is no rational basis in any sound economic analysis that would support the conclusion the government debt has anything to do with unemployment or lack of consumer demand. This is an irrational, quasi-religous ideological position with no basis in fact.
So that explains why the government is lending banks billions of dollars at 0% interest and then borrowing it back at 3.5% interest. How long before this bad boy explodes?
From the statement below it is perfectly clear the coming fall was known from the git-go.
"...The plan still has to win the confidence of investors amid forecasts from Deutsche Bank AG analysts today that losses related to subprime mortgages may reach $400 billion worldwide."
Bloomberg November 12, 2007 16:50 EST, Citigroup, Banks Agree on `Super-SIV,' Person Says (Update5) WEB: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aVNTeA4W0QIs&refer=bond