World financial crisis deepens

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Stanley10

GM now wants 6 billion dollars from the Canadian taxpayer.

I guess it's too simple to just give the 12,000 workers 500,000 dollars each (tax free), or better, a sum based on a sliding scale according to senority. They could pay off their mortgage, retire, or move on to an enviro-sustainable line of work. May help us "decouple" from the US a bit too.

NorthReport

Stanley 10

You don't understand.  Wink

The only way the elites are able to maintain their lifestyle of exotic vacations, yachts, multiple homes and vehicles, servants, etc., particularly in this economic crisis, is to ensure that the working person's wages are keep low, very low. 

Stanley10

"You don't understand."

Yes, never have...but I keep my torch handy in case we all decide to storm the castle. I liked the recent Icelandic drums. I wonder what the Irish will use.

Come gather 'round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You'll be drenched to the bone.
If your time to you
Is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin'
Or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'.

Bob Dylan

George Victor

The 100,000 who marched in Dublin today were not singing that one, from what I could hear.

NorthReport

Finally

Soros Says Financial Crisis Marks End of a Free-Market Model

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=ay0FPxGdth_k&refer=home

 

Billionaire investor George Soros said the current economic crisis has its roots in the financial deregulation of the 1980s and marks the end of a free-market model that has since dominated capitalist countries.

Liberalization of the financial industry begun by the Reagan administration has led to a series of breakdowns forcing government intervention, Soros told economists and bankers last night at a private dinner at Columbia University in New York. The global recession, triggered by the collapse of the U.S. housing market, has “damaged the financial system itself,” he said.

Regulators are in part to blame because they “abrogated” their responsibilities, Soros, 78, said. The philosophy of “market-fundamentalism” was now under question as financial markets have proved to be inefficient and affected by biases rather than driven by all the available information, he said.

“We’re in a crisis I think that’s really the most serious since the 1930s and is different from all the other crises we have experienced in our lifetime,” Soros said.

Soros, founder of New York-based hedge-fund firm Soros Fund Management LLC, said last month at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, that the Obama administration’s plan to buy toxic assets from U.S. banks won’t be enough to get financial institutions to start lending again.

A more effective approach for restarting the economy would be to inject capital directly into the banks and cut minimum capital requirements, Soros, whose firm oversees $21 billion, has said.

Soros’s Quantum Endowment Fund returned 8 percent last year. That compared with an average loss of 18 percent by hedge funds, according to data compiled by Hedge Fund Research Inc. of Chicago.

Doug

A second government has become a casualty:

Latvian Prime Minister Ivars Godmanis and his centre-right government have resigned, amid turmoil triggered by economic crisis in the Baltic state....The president said he would hold talks on Monday on a new coalition with leaders from all of the country's political parties.

Correspondents say the new administration will have a difficult task reviving the economy of the country of 2.4 million people.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7901902.stm

 

Fidel

Brown: World needs 'global New Deal'

Quote:

BERLIN, Germany (CNN) -- The world needs a "global New Deal" to haul it out of the economic crisis it faces, Prime Minister Gordon Brown of the United Kingdom said Sunday.

"We need a global New Deal -- a grand bargain between the countries and continents of this world -- so that the world economy can not only recover but... so the banking system can be based on... best principles," he said, referring to the 1930s American plan to fight the Great Depression.

Brown was speaking as the leaders of Europe's biggest economies met to try to forge a common position on the global financial crisis ahead of a major summit in London in April.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy said the world's response to the global financial meltdown had to be profound and long-lasting, not just tinkering around the edges.

"Europe wants to see an overhaul of the system. We all agree on that. We're not talking about superficial measures now or transitional measures -- we're talking about structural measure, which need to be taken," he said.

"No more replastering, the structure is rotten!" - Paris 1968

janfromthebruce

NorthReport wrote:

Finally

Soros Says Financial Crisis Marks End of a Free-Market Model

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=ay0FPxGdth_k&refer=home

 

Billionaire investor George Soros said the current economic crisis has its roots in the financial deregulation of the 1980s and marks the end of a free-market model that has since dominated capitalist countries.

Liberalization of the financial industry begun by the Reagan administration has led to a series of breakdowns forcing government intervention, Soros told economists and bankers last night at a private dinner at Columbia University in New York. The global recession, triggered by the collapse of the U.S. housing market, has “damaged the financial system itself,” he said.

I guess it is like eating your young - good for them!

______________________________________________________________________________________ Our kids live together and play together in their communities, let's have them learn together too!

NorthReport

Japan's Bernie Madoff

 

Has Kazutsugi Nami downed his last beer as a free man?

 

http://www.forbes.com/2009/02/22/dispatch-japan-fraud-markets_0223_tokyo_dispatch.html

NorthReport

Regulator Faces Fresh Scrutiny Over Trading Inquiry at Lehman

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/23/business/23hedge.html?ref=business

Doug

Canadians who are suddenly worried about whether they can afford to retire or pay for their child's education have no qualms about telling their investment manager what's really on their minds, unloading their fears, frustrations - and even hostility - on their adviser's lap.

It's creating major stress across the industry, according to a Toronto-based adviser whose clients have resorted to angry calls and insults, while colleagues have been personally blamed for their clients' losses.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090223.wladvisor23/...

NorthReport
Doug

London's Metropolitan Police are preparing themselves for a "summer of rage":

Supt Hartshorn, who heads the Metropolitan Police's public order branch, said he feared there could be "mass protest" at rising unemployment, failing financial institutions and the downturn in the economy.

 http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/lawandorder/4784934/...

NorthReport

What do they mean could? One share one vote - it's the ole capitalist way, isn't it? Why is this even an issue that the gov't who bails them out get voting rights or don't they believe in free enterprise!Laughing

In Latest Plan for Banks, U.S. Could Demand Voting Stake

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/24/business/24bank.html?_r=1&hp

 

NorthReport

Banking on the Brink

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/23/opinion/23krugman.html

 

Comrade Greenspan wants us to seize the economy’s commanding heights.

O.K., not exactly. What Alan Greenspan, the former Federal Reserve chairman — and a staunch defender of free markets — actually said was, “It may be necessary to temporarily nationalize some banks in order to facilitate a swift and orderly restructuring.” I agree.

Doug

NorthReport wrote:

More good news:

Wall St. lowest in almost 12 years

http://business.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090223.wwallstreet0223/BNStory/Business/home

Fidel

[url=Neolibwellian">http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=12418][... Doublethink: "Nationalize the banks." "Free Markets."[/url] The language of deception

Quote:

Today’s clash of civilization is not really with the Orient; it is with our own past, with the Enlightenment itself and its evolution into classical political economy and Progressive Era social reforms aimed at freeing society from the surviving trammels of European feudalism. What we are seeing is propaganda designed to deceive, to distract attention from economic reality so as to promote the property and financial interests from whose predatory grasp classical economists set out to free the world. What is being attempted is nothing less than an attempt to destroy the intellectual and moral edifice of what took Western civilization eight centuries to develop, from the 12th century Schoolmen discussing Just Price through 19th and 20th century classical economic value theory.

Any idea of "socialism from above," in the sense of "socializing the risk," is old-fashioned oligarchy – kleptocratic statism from above. Real nationalization occurs when governments act in the public interest to take over private property. The 19th-century program to nationalize the land (it was the first plank of the Communist Manifesto) did not mean anything remotely like the government taking over estates, paying off their mortgages at public expense and then giving it back to the former landlords free and clear of encumbrances and taxes. It meant taking the land and its rental income into the public domain, and leasing it out at a user fee ranging from actual operating cost to a subsidized rate or even freely as in the case of streets and roads.

Another good essay from professor Michael Hudson

Doug

American Express says to leave home without it!

American Express Co., the largest U.S. credit-card company by purchases, is paying some cardholders $300 each to close accounts so the lender can reduce the risk of defaults as the recession deepens. People who got the offer to “simplify” their finances must pay off their entire credit-card balance by April 30, according to New York-based American Express.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601213&sid=a32RTgL8bFSw&refer=home

NorthReport

At least a few people out there are telling it like it is:

'There will be blood'

 

Harvard financial guru Niall Ferguson predicts prolonged financial hardship, even civil war, before the ‘Great Recession' ends

 

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090223.wferguson0223/BNStory/crashandrecovery/home

 

George Victor

Ferguson on China's riole (saving the U.S.economy):

Niall Ferguson: As you know, Chimerica – the fusion of China and America – is one of my big ideas. It's really the key to how the global financial system works, and has been now for about a decade. At the end of The Ascent of Money, I speculate about whether or not that relationship will survive. If it breaks down, then all bets are off, for the U.S. and indeed for Asia. I think that's really the key point. Both sides stand to lose from a breakdown of Chimerica, which is why both sides are affirming a commitment to it.”

-------------------------------------------------------------

He's sure Chimerica  is a sound concept.

I think it's a chimera.

LeighT
NorthReport

How long is it going to be before we begin to see the same pattern in Canada? Not too much longer I reckon, as more and more people lose their jobs and/or have their wages cut.

Housing Prices in 20 U.S. Cities Fall a Record 18.5% (Update2

 

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=a3ArfwXFeZJM&refer=home

 

Home prices in 20 U.S. cities declined 18.5 percent in December from a year earlier, the fastest drop on record, as foreclosures climbed and sales sank.

The decrease in the S&P/Case-Shiller index was more than forecast and followed an 18.2 percent drop in November. The gauge has fallen every month since January 2007, and year-over-year records began in 2001. Separately, the Federal Housing Finance Board said prices in 2008 fell a record 8.2 percent.

Record foreclosures are contributing to declining property values and household wealth, crippling the consumer spending that makes up about 70 percent of the economy. The Obama administration has pledged to spend $275 billion to help stabilize the housing market, including $75 billion to bring down mortgage rates and encourage loan modifications.

“The massive inventory overhang in the market and the surge in foreclosures mean prices will continue to fall rapidly,” Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics in Valhalla, New York, said today in a note to clients. “The administration’s rescue plan will, in time, slow the rate of decline, but it won’t happen immediately.”

Economists forecast the 20-city index would fall 18.3 percent from a year earlier, according to the median of 28 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey. Projections ranged from declines of 17.4 percent to 19 percent.

Quarterly Figures

Compared with a year earlier, all areas in the 20-city survey showed a decrease in prices in December, led by a 34 percent drop in Phoenix, a 33 percent slide in Las Vegas and a 31 percent decline in San Francisco.

S&P/Case-Shiller also released quarterly figures for home prices nationally. That measure showed an 18.2 percent drop in the three months through December from the same period in 2007, compared with a 16.6 percent year-over-year decline in last year’s third quarter.

“The broad downturn in the residential real-estate market continues,” David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P, said in a statement. “There are very few, if any, pockets of turnaround that one can see in the data.”

Doug

AIG wants more money!

American Insurance Group, the insurance giant that is 80-percent owned by the US government, is in discussions with the government to secure additional funds so it can keep operating after next Monday, when it will report the largest loss in U.S. corporate history, CNBC has learned.

Sources close to the company said the loss will be near $60 billion due to writedowns on a variety of assets including commercial real estate.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/29353282

Doug

Japanese exports plummet by nearly half! Imports are down by nearly a third - not good for BC!

Japan’s exports plunged 45.7 percent in January from a year earlier, resulting in a record trade deficit, as recessions in the U.S. and Europe smothered demand for the country’s cars and electronics.

The shortfall widened to 952.6 billion yen ($9.9 billion), the biggest since 1980, the earliest year for which there is comparable data, the Finance Ministry said today in Tokyo. The drop in shipments abroad eclipsed a record 35 percent decline set the previous month.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aTCZ_f77WEqw&refer=home

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Quote:
A few months ago it was clear that we were in the worst crisis since the Great Depression. Now the question is: Will the Great Financial Crisis of today, which has already generated a new depression, lead to a situation as bad as the Great Depression or even worse? No one knows the answer yet. But the fact that the issue is commonly being posed in this way is significant. The one thing that is fairly clear is that, when the devalorization of capital has taken its course and recovery begins, it is unlikely to turn into a full recovery. That is, the conditions of deep economic stagnation are likely to set in, since there is nothing to propel the economy now that financialization has weakened. This was the main economic problem of the 1930s: the persistence of stagnation, until the coming of the Second World War which finally lifted the economy out of depression.
[url=John">http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/foster080209.html][u]John Bellamy Foster[/url]

George Victor

Looking for the observation that companies struggling to compete for investor dollars are partly what brought us to this pickle in the first place. The sight of ever more public money being spent to shore of companies so that they are again viable on THE MARKET is a spectacle to behold.

That's what my (and everyone else's) bank is doing - by raising the cost of credit. Getting profitable And that is no answer to our collective dilemma.

(just love that Gable cartoon from the much-hated Globe, where the PM is inviting a steady stream of suits to Parliament Hill with the greeting :"Welcome to the nation's  capital" under the cartoon heading "CAPITALISM". 

George Victor

"how desperate will Big Pharma get?" Just read your link accompanying that posting, LT.  LaughingLaughing

 

NorthReport

 I find it interesting that in the USA there are articles about housing prices almost every day, whereas in Canada basically there is silence in the press.

U.S. Existing Home Sales, Prices Slumped in January (Update1)

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=acdWmjTuKCCg&refer=home

Sales of previously owned U.S. homes unexpectedly declined in January even as falling prices made them more affordable, signaling that the housing slump is further from a bottom than previously estimated.

Purchases fell 5.3 percent to an annual rate of 4.49 million, the fewest since 1997, the National Association of Realtors said today in Washington. The median price dropped 15 percent from a year ago to a six-year low of $170,300. Distressed properties accounted for 45 percent of all sales.

“This is actually a very disappointing set of numbers,” Ethan Harris, co-head of economic research at Barclays Capital Inc., said in a Bloomberg Television interview. “We’re still in this phase of the recession where it’s really kind of a dramatic pulling back” in purchases of big-ticket items, due to a “tremendous loss of confidence in the economy.”

Doug

It's being mentioned (see: http://business.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090225.wscotiareal0225/BNStory/Business/home ) - but it's not yet the disaster in Canada that it is for many places in the US. Prices are only down 10%.

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

True but the Americans are just ahead of us on the same road.

gulcher

It's been interesting reading this thread...things certainly have gotten pretty scary out there.  But I have to take issue a little with the assertion that free market capitalism is what got us into this mess.

 I think an overly-centralized, over-regulated economy is partly responsible.  I also think we are mistaken to have a system running on fiat currencies, i.e. money that has no intrinsic value, and that can be created at will by government whether the savings or real wealth are there or not. 

 And I think it's time to admit that fractionalized reserve banking doesn't work.  Allowing banks to multiply the amount of money you deposit into a new larger number without the physical holdings to back it up, and then using that invented money to set rates and to lend it out at interest (either back to you or to other lenders) is pure insanity, and exponentially inflates the debt bubble.

And no wonder the bubble got so big, and that it's bursting has been hurting so much...it's the undoing of decades and decades of crazy economic policy enacted by bureaucrats who really had no clue about economics to begin with.  And this pretty much describes the bureaucrats we have running things today!

 If I were religious at all, I'd be praying.

It's Me D

gulcher wrote:
And I think it's time to admit that fractionalized reserve banking doesn't work. Allowing banks to multiply the amount of money you deposit into a new larger number without the physical holdings to back it up, and then using that invented money to set rates and to lend it out at interest (either back to you or to other lenders) is pure insanity, and exponentially inflates the debt bubble.

So governments need to rein in banks?

gulcher wrote:
And no wonder the bubble got so big, and that it's bursting has been hurting so much...it's the undoing of decades and decades of crazy economic policy enacted by bureaucrats who really had no clue about economics to begin with. And this pretty much describes the bureaucrats we have running things today!

So banks need to rein in governments?

 

I'm having trouble with your post, I think that facts are getting in the way of your ideology... you may have to dispense with them if you're serious about blaming over-regulation by governments for the failure of private greed.

gulcher

gulcher wrote:
And I think it's time to admit that fractionalized reserve banking doesn't work. Allowing banks to multiply the amount of money you deposit into a new larger number without the physical holdings to back it up, and then using that invented money to set rates and to lend it out at interest (either back to you or to other lenders) is pure insanity, and exponentially inflates the debt bubble.

Quote:
So governments need to rein in banks?

No definitely not...for the most part I think the banking system is over-regulated.  And deposit insurance is wasteful.  The banks are large bureaucracies that cost the average consumer more money than they should to operate.  There are too many managers, accountants, auditors, committees, etc all making sizable incomes without providing real value to the consumer.

However, what little regulation I would keep for banks, I would ensure that all banks maintain a high percentage, if not 100% of their reserve requirements for every transaction they process. 

I feel it's a much sounder alternative to the current system of multiplying deposits by a centrally-planned number, and using that new false amount to in turn lend to consumers and other institutions.  A bank that must have most or all of the money in its physical possession before it can lend that same amount out is much safer, and less wasteful.  And there'd be no need for deposit insurance.

Of course, that idea wouldn't work without getting our currency back onto a precious metal standard of some sort.  Right now our money has no intrinsic value, and that makes it far too easy to print and spend whenever it's deemed necessary or convenient, whether the government has the savings to back it up, or not.  That isn't responsible policy, in my opinion and leads to the creation of debt bubbles...like the one we're currently dealing with.

gulcher wrote:
And no wonder the bubble got so big, and that it's bursting has been hurting so much...it's the undoing of decades and decades of crazy economic policy enacted by bureaucrats who really had no clue about economics to begin with. And this pretty much describes the bureaucrats we have running things today!

Quote:
So banks need to rein in governments?

 I'm having trouble with your post, I think that facts are getting in the way of your ideology... you may have to dispense with them if you're serious about blaming over-regulation by governments for the failure of private greed.

Yes, government should be limited...limited in terms of size and mandate.  We're currently seeing the market react to years and years of over-sized governments and the massive overhead they carry with them.  For decades governments have grown into large bureaucratic entities that cost an awful lot of money to run.

Private greed isn't the problem, the problem is that private companies for too long have been run in collusion with western governments.  They've co-existed nearly as one plundering body that has managed - through top-heavy management, nepotism, and endless regulation - to take most of the wealth away from the constituents/consumers who are supposed to be calling the shots, and placed it in the hands of the few at the top of the pyramid.

Free market capitalism would allow more people access to wealth creation if that system were allowed to work, but instead of that we've had generations of corporatocracy...where large companies have become one with government encapturing the average citizen in a life of perennial debt, and abject serfdom.

It's Me D

I don't know where to start on that post, here's a couple quick comments.

gulcher wrote:
whether the government has the savings to back it up, or not

We are their savings. 

gulcher wrote:
the problem is that private companies for too long have been run in collusion with western governments

Well I agree with you on this sentence fragment!

 

gulcher

gulcher wrote:
whether the government has the savings to back it up, or not

Quote:
We are their savings.

And you would think this would restrict government spending to only what they take from their constituents, in reality though, the government skips the inconvenient step of having to "save up" for big expenditures, and instead jumps right into borrowing and spending. 

 The government will run a deficit to pay for things it doesn't have enough revenue to afford...and they borrow that money at interest either from the private banks who create the money out of reserves they don't actually have, or foreign creditors who agree to buy our treasuries.

And now we're seeing governments around the world borrowing money/creating debt in order to "stimulate" their economies, and attempt to mitigate the effects of having a massive debt-load. It's ridiculous.

Fidel

gulcher wrote:
And now we're seeing governments around the world borrowing money/creating debt in order to "stimulate" their economies, and attempt to mitigate the effects of having a massive debt-load. It's ridiculous.

Canada ranks 25th out of 30 capitalist countries for social spending. The US, Canada and Brazil have racked up some of the largest national debts in world history from the 1970s through today.

Why would Ottawa borrow money from superrich people and private banks near and abroad at usurous rates of interest,  instead of financing program spending needs by our nationalised Bank of Canada at less than one percent rate of interest?

Jacob Two-Two

How did too much regulation funnel money to the top of the pyramid? That makes no sense at all. You are labouring under the delusion of a pure, mathematical, Adam Smith-esque version of capitalism that doesn't exist in the real world. There is no level playing field and there never will be, unless we create it ourselves.

I read an article a while back about one of those World-Of-Warcraft type games and how the designers tried to create a functioning economy for their virtual universe. Being good nerds, used to thinking in terms of abstract systems, they wanted to set up a perfect unregulated capitalist model and just let it run wild. They were so sure it would work like a charm, but instead it was a huge failure. What happened was utterly predictable to anyone not sucked in by the delusions of capitalist ideology. A select few players got a leg up on the others early on, and kept pressing their advantage to keep taking all the wealth for themselves. Very quickly a small handful of characters were super-wealthy and the rest were miserably poor, with little opportunity to change their circumstances since the rich characters were so much more powerful than everyone else. The designers had to start intervening in a big way to even out their economy so that people would have money to spend and it would actually function.

This is how capitalism works in the real world, (and apparently in virtual simulations). Capital accumulates. That's the whole logic of it. If this weren't true there would be no point to the whole thing. I use my money to make more money and I use the power this gives me to destroy your ability to make money because that leaves more market share for me to make money in. I drive your business under and then buy it so that you work for me, and all the profit that used to be yours is now mine. You want unregulated capitalism? It ends with you working 14 hour days with no weekends or vacations, and you still wind up selling me your children as slaves just to buy some food.

Yes, the essential problem is that all the wealth has been funnelled upwards. Too much money is in too few hands. But it is the lack of regulation that has caused this, and a presence of regulation that prevents it. Why do you think the rich are always pushing to de-regulate the system? Not because they're scared of accumulating too much wealth, I can tell you that! They want to de-regulate precisely because it allows them to get richer and richer and richer, sucking all the wealth that the system creates to themselves. 

Learn a little history and you'll find that the general trend is that high regulation accompanies prosperity (60's 70's) and low regulation leads to collapse (now). The facts are in. The jury's out. You're just plain wrong. Capitalism is not a sustainable system. Without intense regulation and constant oversight, it can't even keep upright, which just goes to show that there's no reason to keep it around at all.

Merowe

yeah, really, Gulcher, how in all the current mess have you managed to miss all the analysis that points to deregulation starting with Reagan as being the root of the current problem? Regulations introduced after '29 to curb the sort of speculative frenzy that has got us into the current debacle.

It was deregulation that allowed banks to leverage their capital up to 42 times over - so when the bubble bursts as it is doing now, that one real dollar pulls down 42 more with it. 

The financialization process took off around the time the real economy started stagnating and clearly reflected the triumph of the greed of a particular class over the reality which is now returning. I've read suggestions that something like 70 TRILLION dollars needs to be wiped out of the world economy to recalibrate actual value to the 'real' economy, to real production, etc. 

Look at the last thirty years: the upper 10 per cent see their wealth increase many times over while the middle class shrinks and the poor fall off the bottom of the map. It's just been a criminal racket to squeeze the foundation of the real economy and the readjustment has been long overdue. 

Free market capitalism is a self-serving fiction and belongs on the shelf with witch-burning and a flat earth. With the massive bank bailouts we are just seeing an economic elite, which has thoroughly penetrated our 'democratic' political system, helping themselves to the public trough one last time before it all collapses: entirely in character.

On the BBC today they're running the story of the RBC chairman who is defending his entitlement to a 650,000/pa British Sterling pension, now to be paid for as part of a multi-billion dollar taxpayer bailout. 

He is a criminal parasite and typical of his class. For his contribution to running that bank into the ground, wiping out thousands of working people's savings, he should get nothing more than one bullet, with the bill for it sent to his wretched family. 

Fidel

Merowe wrote:
He is a criminal parasite and typical of his class. For his contribution to running that bank into the ground, wiping out thousands of working people's savings, he should get nothing more than one bullet, with the bill for it sent to his wretched family. 

Well that's pretty mean spirited. I think the state might afford the cost of a bullet. No state burial though. Have to draw the line somewhere. 

George Victor

Gulcher: 

"And now we're seeing governments around the world borrowing money/creating debt in order to "stimulate" their economies, and attempt to mitigate the effects of having a massive debt-load. It's ridiculous. "

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Ridiculous" Gulch, doesn't quite register on the analytical meter.

It's an electorate with your gullibility that allowed the neo-con to take us here. Or did this not begin with Reagan and take final shape with lower-taxes, huge deficits  Dubya? Where ya bin', Bonzo? 

 

ElizaQ ElizaQ's picture

  Gulcher do you and have you paid  for everything you need to enable you  live on and I assuming  to work, upfront and in cash? 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Pity the poor Toronto-Dominion Bank. The Great Depression II has hit it hard.

The bank's profits for the first quarter of the banking year (November to January) were down 27% from a year earlier. During those three months they "earned" only about $8 million a day (7 days a week) in profit.

I think this calls for a bailout.

Fidel

[url=The">http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=12476][... "Great Financial Crisis": A whole new kind of struggle is emerging[/url] Interview with John Bellamy Foster

Quote:
MW: The financial crisis is quickly turning into a political crisis. Already governments in Iceland and Latvia have collapsed and the global slump is just beginning to accelerate. Riots and street violence have broken out in Greece, Latvia and Lithuania and worker-led protests have become commonplace throughout the EU. As unemployment skyrockets and economic activity stalls, countries are likely to experience greater social instability. How does one take deep-seated discontent and rage and shape it into a political movement for structural change?

JBF: The first thing to recognize is that we are suddenly in a different historical period. One of my favorite quotes comes from Gillo Pontecorvo’s 1969 film Burn!, where the main character, William Walker (played by Marlon Brando) states: “Very often between one historical period and another, ten years suddenly might be enough to reveal the contradictions of an entire century.” We are living in such a period; not only because of the Great Financial Crisis and what the IMF is now calling a depression in the advanced capitalist economies, but also because of the global ecological crisis that during the last decade has accelerated out of control under business as usual, and due to the reappearance of “naked imperialism.” What made sense ten years ago is nonsense now. New dangers and new possibilities are opening up. A whole different kind of struggle is emerging

NorthReport

These are exciting times we live in.  

Climate of Change

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/27/opinion/27krugman.html?_r=1

Elections have consequences. President Obama’s new budget represents a huge break, not just with the policies of the past eight years, but with policy trends over the past 30 years. If he can get anything like the plan he announced on Thursday through Congress, he will set America on a fundamentally new course.

The budget will, among other things, come as a huge relief to Democrats who were starting to feel a bit of postpartisan depression. The stimulus bill that Congress passed may have been too weak and too focused on tax cuts. The administration’s refusal to get tough on the banks may be deeply disappointing. But fears that Mr. Obama would sacrifice progressive priorities in his budget plans, and satisfy himself with fiddling around the edges of the tax system, have now been banished.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Well, guess who's drunk the Obama koolaid.

Slumberjack

A whole new kind of struggle is emerging

“Very often between one historical period and another, ten years suddenly might be enough to reveal the contradictions of an entire century.”

josh

U.S. decline in GDP in fourth quarter of '08 worst in over a quarter of a century:

"What a ghastly report," said John Ryding, chief economist at RDQ Economics. "Since the recession started in December 2007, this will almost certainly be the longest postwar recession, and now potentially the deepest one as well."

Output fell 6.2 percent at an annualized rate in the fourth quarter of 2008, revised downward from a previous estimate of a 3.8 percent decline. The drop was even steeper than many economists had feared - the consensus estimate had been a 5.4 percent decline - and was much lower than the 0.5 percent contraction from the previous quarter.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/28/business/economy/28econ.html?ref=business

 

contrarianna

Obama is either too clueless, too rightwing, or too scared of negative propaganda to do the absolutely necessary thing--nationalize the banks.

The "taxpayer handouts, not ownership"  promoters are warning against the scary boogie man, literally, in the form of "Zombie Banks" :

Wall St spooked by 'zombie' banks

Posted Wed Feb 25, 2009 6:01pm AEDT
There are unconfirmed reports that the US Government could take a 40 per cent stake in Citigroup.

Speculation in the United States that some American banks were going to be nationalised sent stocks on Wall Street to a 12-year low yesterday.

The major indexes have recovered today, thanks to Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke, who says the authorities just want to make sure the banks are solvent.

"We don't have to take them over to do that, we've always worked with banks to make sure that they're healthy and stable, and we're going to work with them," he said...."

....yep, "always worked with banks".... and done a bang up job, yes sir!

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/02/25/2501427.htm?section=features

Coming to a theatre near you:

Night of the Living Taxpayer Ownership

LeighT

"Night of the Living Taxpayer Ownership "

[laughs out loud!]

saga saga's picture

Arsonists Torch Berlin Porsches, BMWs on Economic Woe (Update1)

By Brett Neely


Feb. 27 (Bloomberg) -- When Berlin resident Simone Klostermann returned from vacation and couldn’t find her Mercedes SLK, she thought it had been towed. Police told her the 35,000- euro ($45,000) car had been torched.

more ... 

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&sid=auZeM63nrgzo&refer=home

 The people are 'speaking' ... lol

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