6/9/11…sheer audacity

TB is still away due to a family illness, but after being immersed in FOX News for the past three days, reading Matt Taibbi’s book, Grifitopia,and then reading Jamie Dimon’s latest outrage, he had to write.

1. Listening to FOX News (if you can call commentary news), TB has heard Glen Beck tutor an audience of puppets on how all of our problems are due to government meddling – food stamps are another social lifenet that is sapping us…food prices are rising so we should all go out and buy six months of supplies as he did (‘F’ in economics for that one: not only would it drive food prices higher by creating shortages but like all emergency rations will tend to be too old to use when you forget you have it). His answers to all were simplistic at best and he equated this to the Depression as being government caused due to too much regulation. Beck also said that Obama should tell the people there is a crisis and they need to prepare…the last time a president did this he was crushed and that was merely for wearing a sweater and telling people to turn down the thermostat three degrees. But then he wants to see Obama lose. A huge question: didn’t we just have the worst financial crisis the world has ever seen due to a total LACK of regulation of the financial sector?

2. Grifitopia is TB on steroids. While TB found some errors on specifics of investments and shorting stocks, it is well-written and shows how the top1% has manipulated others to believe that it is government, not greed, and quest for short-term profits that created the problem…although had government…especially Greenspan who he rightiously criticizes not just for his performance but for his qualifications for the job. It also corrects the misconception that most of the mortgage problems were created by the borrowers…no they were created by commissioned salesmen, corrupt mortgage lenders and Wall Street who for a buck was willing to pretend all was well and then WE, the people, had to bail them out after committing multiple acts of fraud…yet no one went to jail. His analysis of AIG has a new spin too. Highly recommended.

3. Then this morning TB read on Bloomberg that Jamie Dimon is now accusing Bernanke of trying to destroy the economy thru excess capital requirements for banks. This is preposterous as we saw the lunatics are incapable of running the asylum when they see dollars in front of them. True, JPM did not need a bailout, but that was only by luck. Also, they created the credit default swap as a means of lowering reserve requirements. How about all those municipalities they ripped off with overpriced and unexplained interest rate swaps, bribes, and price fixing on bond bids? The government is toast because now the other bankers will jump in and say capital requirements are too high but note they do not want to rid themselves of access to more bailouts. We are destined for yet another financial crisis and it looms sooner than we think.

Meanwhile the stock market once again tries to rally note how it couldn’t hold yesterday and the reason today is that the trade deficit narrowed on  lower oil and other imports. Of course, this overlooks an unexpected increase in weekly jobless claims, but do we really need jobs? You decide…TB already has and it isn’t pretty.

A friend told TB last weekend that he should try to end columns in an upbeat manner like some other commentators do. He used to do that but when people are sitting around talking about balancing the budget as we double dip into recession and yet refuse to raise the tax rate on even the top 1% who control 38% of the wealth and pay an effective 21% tax rate, and we have the GOP focusing on the carnival of Wiener when they ignored Schwarzenegger and all the other GOP members who have done similar, it is simply politics as usual.  Thus we have a presidential election in which the incumbent will likely win by default and the country and citizens will pay for our neglect.

So until we wrest control of the government back from the financial sector, and people go to Washington to solve problems not create them and know what they are doing, TB finds it hard to be an optimist…especially when there is so much apathy except for the wrong things.

Have a great day!




  1. Yarnman said

    TB–I hope that you and yours do not have a Citi credit card, because Citi just announced today that it’s been hacked. Several hundred thousand accounts are involved, but I’d bet Citi is low-balling that number–their annual report says they service 21 million credit card accounts. We all hope and pray for a speedy recovery of the ill person in your family.–Yarnman

  2. Yarnman said

    TB-Sorry to overload you with comments today, but David Callaway, Editor of Marketwatch, nailed Dimon today in his editorial, “The midnight ride of Jamie Dimon.” It’s a hoot, as Sarah Palin would say.– Best, Yarnman

    • traderbill said

      Just got to reading comments and thanks for Citi warning. Don’t have one fortunately. As for Dimon, Simon Johnson also ripped him to shreds on June 9.

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