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I saw A New Way Forward over at FDL, in comments on Stirling's newest.

April 11 is far away enough to plan. Anybody know ANWF is?

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Submitted by jawbone on

going on.

...As we have seen the press repeatedly attempt to "left post" Obama's first steps towards an agenda, both slowing down his progress and paving the way for a hard right Presidential successor, the financial world is attempting to push the purpose of regulation to "preventing another financial collapse" rather than creating a more equitable system.

The ultimate principle under debate is whether the present collapse is an irrational moment which is preventable with restrictions, or a recurring feature of the present financial system. Prof. Brad DeLong theorizes that the loss of institutional memory of the Great Depression has returned America to the normalcy of speculation and panic which began in 1825. More forcefully the coming of global warming and peak oil into the economic scene argues that what is going on is an entirely rational discounting of the value of the capital of the combustion era. In this view what is going on is not a momentary instability which can be blocked with technocratic fixes, but a fundamental feature of the financial landscape which must be met with larger and broader measures than simply leveraging TARP money, or which must be accepted as a periodic phenomenon.

This is why an obscure debate in Washington over how "systematic risk" to the financial system should be regulated is taking on larger proportions. One camp wants to assign the matter to Treasury and the Federal Reserve, with the FDIC doing clean up, another wants a different mechanism, arguing that Treasury and the Fed both have short term pressures to ignore instabilities, since these instabilities produce more growth on the way up, and more damage on the way down. Shades of Greenspan's argument that bubbles should be left alone, and then dealt with only in the aftermath. For bankers, having one of their own at the Fed determining risk is very much like having private companies such determine credit ratings, it isn't exactly the fox watching the chicken coop, but let's say a very hungry dog. (My emphasis)

"Who will watch the watchers" was my first reaction when Geithner announced Treasury needed new powers to manage the "too big to fail" financial insitutions.
Got a few chills reading some of this post.

I used to think that having a Democratic administration meant that appointments would be made with the interests of the public and the institutions being regulated in mind, and I actually believed Dem appointees would mostly look out for the general welfare of the nation, not particular interest groups. No longer.

ElizabethF's picture
Submitted by ElizabethF on

hopefully, we can have millions in the protests.