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tsuomela : 2008   77

The Fire Last Time - Los Angeles Review of Books
"Firefighting The Financial Crisis and Its Lessons By Ben S. Bernanke, Henry M. Paulson Jr., Timothy F. Geithner"
book  review  finance  crisis  2008 
12 weeks ago by tsuomela
Thoughts for an eleventh September: Alvin Toffler, Hirohito, Sarah Palin « Adam Greenfield's Speedbird
"After my talks, I’m frequently enough asked about the comparative technical backwardness of the US, often in so many words. In such circumstances I invariably trot out Mimi Ito’s relativist line about “alternatively technologized modernities,” and the idea that different places, different polities arrive at – have to arrive at – divergent understandings about which technologies are appropriate for their given time and place. And I strongly believe that it’s a correct line..but it’s no longer true. What’s going on in the US isn’t, it’s clear to me, a measured and equally valid selection from the sheaf of available technosocial possibilities, but symptomatic, however subtly, of a headlong flight from contemporaneity. In the relatively narrow field of my interests – ambient informatics, the networked city – can be seen something profound writ small: among fully-developed nations, the US stands out as having generally rejected “futuristic” interventions in everyday urban life, to the point that what I’m bound to present as innovative to US audiences is almost laughably banal elsewhere."
future  emotion  future-shock  sensation  interface  mobile  america  fear  politics  2008 
october 2012 by tsuomela
Interactive: Which Banks Got Emergency Loans from the Fed During the Financial Meltdown?
Wednesday the Federal Reserve released data on more than 21,000 loans and other deals it made through a dozen emergency programs created during the financial crisis. The Fed used trillions of dollars to stabilize the economy when the housing bubble burst and credit markets froze.

We combined the Fed’s three programs that loaned directly to banks and other financial firms with the goal of getting them to start lending again. We hope to post on the Fed’s other programs soon.
data  media  federal-reserve  crisis  2008  business  banking  loans  journalism 
december 2010 by tsuomela
Follow the Money
"There was no credit crisis. What was happening was much more arcane: A few big institutions that had made bad bets were at risk of going bust, and that’s it. And if they had gone bankrupt, it wouldn’t have been the end of the world." - highlights some contrary views that the credit contraction in September 2008 might not have been as bad as Paulson, Bernanke claimed.
economics  banking  finance  crisis  2008  bailout 
february 2009 by tsuomela
Smart Politics - Franken's (Apparent) Victory Is 4th Weakest U.S. Senate Performance in DFL History
A Smart Politics analysis of Minnesota's historical U.S. Senate election returns finds Franken's performance to be the 4th worst out of the 22 DFL nominees on the ballot in general elections since the DFL merger in 1944, when measured against the performance of DFLers at the top of the ticket in presidential and gubernatorial elections held that year.
politics  minnesota  voting  senate  election  2008  elections 
january 2009 by tsuomela
Thomas Frank: The 'Market' Isn't So Wise After All -
But by and large the free-market medicine men seem determined to learn nothing from this awful year. Instead they repeat their incantations and retreat deeper into their dogma, generating endless schemes in which government is to blame, all sin originates with the Community Reinvestment Act, and the bailouts for which their own flock is desperately bleating can do nothing but harm.

And they wait for things to return to normal, without realizing that things already have.
free-markets  market-failure  ideology  crisis  economics  2008 
january 2009 by tsuomela
Ahi quanto a dir qual era è cosa dura / esta selva selvaggia e aspra e forte / che nel pensier rinova la paura! | Economics | The American Scene
Given my eye-of-the-storm view of the matter, I thought it would be of interest to relate two stories from my long career in structured finance, one that may help explain why, if you asked me in 2004 or 2005, I would have staunchly defended structured finance technology as having real social benefit and why, by a couple of years later, it was clear to anyone looking honestly at the business that something had gone very wrong.
financial-engineering  finance  crisis  2008  banking  fraud 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Open Left:: Maddow: Did America Get Punked On the Bailout? Yes...Now Here's What to Do.
The report found that among small businesses "no "credit crunch" has appeared to date beyond the normal cyclical tightening of credit." The NFIB found that worries about interest rates and financing were a concern to only 3% of respondents...By and large, the story of the NFIB report was that if credit is going untapped, it's largely because company operators are not choosing to pursue the credit. It's not that companies can't get the extra money, it's that they don't want or need it because of the broader slowdown in economic activity.
crisis  economics  2008  depression  credit  shock-doctrine  boondoggle 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Op-Ed Columnist - The Madoff Economy -
Think of the way almost everyone important missed the warning signs of an impending crisis. How was that possible? How, for example, could Alan Greenspan have declared, just a few years ago, that “the financial system as a whole has become more resilient” — thanks to derivatives, no less? The answer, I believe, is that there’s an innate tendency on the part of even the elite to idolize men who are making a lot of money, and assume that they know what they’re doing.
crisis  2008  economics  elites  mistakes  bias  capitalism  gloom-and-doom  fraud  financial-services 
december 2008 by tsuomela
naked capitalism: New York Times Pulls Punches On Wall Street Bubble Era Pay
Re-read the key phrase: "pay themselves more than their firms are worth and then default on their debt obligations." This has happened en masse in what formerly were investment banks who have now become wards of the state.
finance  crisis  2008  capitalism  fraud  money  ceo 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Four really, really bad scenarios - Eamon Javers -
Could things get worse? Oh, yeah. How financial turmoil threatens national security.
economics  crisis  2008  foreign-policy  scenario 
december 2008 by tsuomela
THE CRASH -- What Went Wrong
Depressing, but relatively clear, narrative of how the CDO machine worked on Wall Street.
crisis  2008  financial-engineering  cdo  finance  wall-street 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Joseph E. Stiglitz on capitalist fools:
Behind the debate over remaking U.S. financial policy will be a debate over who's to blame. It's crucial to get the history right, writes a Nobel-laureate economist, identifying five key mistakes - under Reagan, Clinton, and Bush II - and one national delusion.
1. Firing Paul Volcker in the 1980s. 2. Deregulation uber alles, especially revoking Glass-Steagal. 3. George W. Bush tax cuts 4. Sarbanes-Oxley fails to deal with stock options. 5. Mismanaging the 2008 bailout package
economics  crisis  2008  politics  capitalism  banking  government  regulation 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Grasping Reality with Both Hands: The Semi-Daily Journal of Economist Brad DeLong: Liquidity, Default, Risk
Things are even worse as far as the risk discount is concerned. In normal times, our models predict, with the ability to diversify portfolios that exists today the risk discount on assets like corporate equities should be around 1% per year. It is more like 5% per year in normal times—it is more like 10% per year today. And our models for why the risk discount has taken such a huge upward leap in the past year and a half are little better than simple handwaving and just-so stories. Our current financial crisis remains largely a mystery: a $2 trillion impulse in lost value of securitized mortgages has set in motion a financial accelerator that we do not understand at any deep level that has led to ten times the total losses in financial wealth of the impulse.
economics  crisis  2008  credit  risk  discounting-rate 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Interfluidity :: Should "bad" financial contracts be banned?
Flawed financial instruments only become policy issues when people responsible for investment on a significant scale decide that what they don't know won't hurt them. This can happen by virtue of fads and fashion, the madness of crowds: consider internet stocks, or blind faith in diversification and "stocks for the long run". But most poor investment, in dollar-weighted terms, is not taken by foolish individuals placing their own money. Bankers and institutional investors are on the one hand granted the power to control investment on a very large scale, and on the other hand make consistently awful choices. Delegated money, rather than trading off return and safety, often trades return for safe-harbor. Absurd contracts that appear to offer high returns are very attractive to money managers of all stripes, if they offer a veneer of safety and "prudence", or better yet, if they become conventional.
financial-engineering  crisis  2008  credit  business  investing  regulation 
december 2008 by tsuomela
TPMCafe | Talking Points Memo | Two (Radical?) Thoughts on Infrastructure
We hear a lot about infrastructure investment today: roads and bridges, mostly. But we live in an information society and an information economy. We need investment in information infrastructure, and that, in the near term that is relevant for a recovery package, means massive public investment in Fiber To The Home (FTTH) and creating a fundamentally new system for adult education and its conversion into greater local involvement in education programs at local public schools.
economics  crisis  2008  infrastructure  investment  politics  internet  ftth  education  open-education  adult-education 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Video from the Presidential Campaign, Republican Division - Boing Boing
Looking at Republican uses of video that my students analyzed was quite instructive in this light, because a) those strategies weren't just weak mirrors of the Democratic camp, they were strong but different ones and b) these strategies are going to become much stronger in 2010 and then again in 2012.
politics  election  2008  video  republicans  conservatism  rhetoric 
december 2008 by tsuomela
Open Left:: Obama Ate the Left, And We Shouldn't Blame Him At All. But What Do We Do Now? the question, in my opinion, is because Obama effectively ate a huge chunk of the left. And really, Obama didn't eat a huge chunk of the left, celebrity did.
politics  2008  election  celebrity  infrastructure  institutions 
december 2008 by tsuomela
The Bailout: Bush’s Final Pillage | Naomi Klein
This is where Treasury’s equity pays off big time. By purchasing stakes in these financial institutions, Treasury is sending a signal to the market that they are a safe bet. Why safe? Not because their level of risk has been accurately assessed at last. Not because they have renounced the kind of exotic financial instruments and outrageous leverage rates that created the crisis. Rather, because the market will now be banking on the fact that the U.S. government won’t let these particular companies fail.
economics  crisis  2008  market-failure  bailout 
november 2008 by tsuomela
Daily Kos: Analysing the current financial crisis
reviews written reaction to current financial crisis: 1. the insane deadenders 2. the Establishment, not moving an inch 3. the smart analyses
economics  crisis  2008  commentary  review  ideology  capitalism 
november 2008 by tsuomela
It's His Party | The American Prospect
Barack Obama might be running on a post-partisan platform, but he is more focused on building the Democratic Party than any other candidate in recent history.
2008  election  people-barackobama  politics  america  democrat  party  organization 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Fafblog! the whole world's only source for Fafblog.
FACT! Barack Obama was a community organizer. ACORN is made of community organizers. Acorns come from oak trees. Oak trees belong to the genus Quercus, which includes Quercus faginea, the Portuguese oak. The prime minister of Portugal is José Sócrates, whose last name looks like Socrates, who lived in Athens, which is also a city in Georgia, whose state fruit is the peach, which is native to China, which is exactly what Osama bin Laden was eating off of while he was plotting to destroy the Twin Towers. It's all connected, people - they just don't want you to know! And they could be black.
politics  satire  humor  race  2008  obama  barack 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Firedoglake » Obamanomics
Oh, I know all of this is a dream. Obama's not a liberal, despite all the screaming. That's not his fault, there's hardly a liberal left in America. As I like to joke, "Americans wouldn't know a liberal if he gave them universal health care". And some will say that if Obama was a liberal, he couldn't be elected, though frankly, after this campaign, I think that's a weak argument.

But, because Obama isn't a liberal, what he's going to do is do neo-liberalism, aka:Reaganomics, one more time. One more roll of the dice at the land casino. It won't work, and in a few years we'll be back here again.
economics  philosophy  politics  liberal  neoliberalism  2008 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Steven Pearlstein - It's Wall Street's Turn to Bolster Confidence
In putting several trillion dollars in government funds on the line, the country has now done just about everything that Wall Street could have asked to address the financial crisis. The question now, as John Kennedy might have put it, is what Wall Street is ready to do for its country. So far, the answer is not much.

After getting their closed-door briefing yesterday from Paulson on the government's latest initiatives, Wall Street's finest literally ran from the Treasury to their waiting limousines, bypassing a media scrum eager to convey any scrap of wisdom or insight.
economics  crisis  2008  wall-street 
october 2008 by tsuomela
McClatchy Washington Bureau | 10/12/2008 | Private sector loans, not Fannie or Freddie, triggered crisis
Federal housing data reveal that the charges aren't true, and that the private sector, not the government or government-backed companies, was behind the soaring subprime lending at the core of the crisis.
economics  crisis  2008  housing 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Daily Kos: The Panic of 2008
This is an orderly panic. And it marks the end of the world that everyone reading this has known. Perhaps we can muddle through this one without fundamental change, by printing paper and then standing in place. But in reality we need to make changes, and dramatic ones. We need to green the American spirit, because it is not green supply, but green demand which is the key. If people want black things, then "alternative" energy is more expensive old energy. If we want green things, then oil is a boutique fuel for specific purposes.
economics  future  crisis  bailout  2008  environment 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Open Left:: The Paulson Panic
Bernanke has often been praised as a non-partisan expert on the Great Depression. This theory of his actions is wrong, and the people who hold it have not carefully read his work in light of its implications. Instead, the correct way of reading Bernanke's work is this: how can a conservative regime survive a major dislocation, without submitting to regulation and liberalism. Bernanke is not an expert in avoiding the Great Depression, but an expert in having the bubble of the 1920's, without having an FDR. After all, the way to have prevented the Great Depression was known to Keynes: don't have the Treaty of Versailles.
economics  crisis  2008  finance  money  history 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Daily Kos: State of the Nation
When economic historians look back at this moment, they will see the obvious folly of the Bush tax program, a program the public still nominally supports. By creating a regime of unsustainably low tax rates on the transfer of money from the pool of invested risk, to the pool of personal wealth, it meant that everyone had every incentive to rush the door.
crisis  economics  history  causation  2008 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Dana Blankenhorn: How the Haties Got That Way
At the heart of the crisis which begins after this election (assuming that election is won) is the need to confront this right-wing "black" terror. It has control of our government today. All the evils of watch lists, renditions, and the rest are being crafted and carried out by people who believe in the ideology they are fighting for.

Losing power will not kill the ideology. It will drive it underground, and make it far more dangerous.
race  politics  2008  hatred  conservatism 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Fear is Back - and Mad as Hell
The poor lumpeninvestor doesn't know what to make of it. It seems like only yesterday he was told that everything was all right. Alan Greenspan said so. So did Hank Paulson. And Ben Bernanke. And George W. Bush. We have the strongest economy in the world. We're unbeatable. Our economy is so dynamic! Our financial sector is so inventive! We're just so damned smart!

The Japanese can live with a 20-year slump if they want. The Europeans never seem to get their economy revved up. But we Americans know how make an economy hum - just give the consumer more credit!

But when the cycle turns from greed to fear…all that credit is like excess fuel in a crash landing. It tends to explode
economics  bailout  2008 
october 2008 by tsuomela | Willem Buiter’s Maverecon | A Special Resolution Regime for banks must put tax payers before shareholders and bank creditors
It’s reasonable to assume that the banking system in the North Atlantic region is insolvent and would be bankrupt but for the reality of recent government bailouts and the expectation of future government bailouts. Certainly, for the system as a whole, the marked-to-market value of its assets is way below that of its liabilities. I strongly suspect that even the hold-to-maturity value of its assets is well below that of its liabilities. Although the system as a whole is broke, there are no doubt individual banks that are solvent. We may not, however be certain as to which banks are solvent and which banks are not.
economics  bailout  banking  financial-services  2008  gloom-and-doom 
october 2008 by tsuomela
The GOP Blames the Victim -
Most of the mistakes for which we are paying now, Mr. Black told me, were actually made "by four entities that under conservative economic theory should have exercised effective market discipline -- the appraisers, the originators of the mortgages, the rating agencies, and the investment banking firms that packaged the subprime mortgage-backed securities." Instead of "disciplining" the markets, these private actors "served as the four horsemen of the financial apocalypse, aiding the accounting fraud and inflating the housing bubble." It is they, Mr. Black says, who "turned a crisis into a catastrophe."

Ah, but truth is no ally to a conservative with his back to the wall. So much more helpful are the trusty narratives on which the movement was built. So when we have dispatched this first canard, we learn from other conservatives that it is the sub-prime people who are to blame
economics  crisis  2008  blame  politics  race  class-war 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Op-Ed Contributor - The Power of Negative Thinking - Op-Ed -
GREED — and its crafty sibling, speculation — are the designated culprits for the financial crisis. But another, much admired, habit of mind should get its share of the blame: the delusional optimism of mainstream, all-American, positive thinking.
economics  crisis  bailout  2008  america  culture  psychology  optimism  positive-thinking 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Radical Science Fiction: From Reputable to Dis- | exco
What is it about science fiction? Why are there so many left-wing science fiction novels? Why does science fiction stay so disreputable no matter how many "literary" writers--Margaret Atwood, Samuel Delany, Ursula Le Guin--publish science fiction novels? What does science fiction do?
exco  minneapolis  sf  class  literature  2008 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Douglas Rushkoff » No Money Down
The whole show was a fitting metaphor for the credit crunch, a misnamed sabotage of the credit system by institutions with the problem of too much, not too little, money to put to work. As I explained in my last column, banks and credit institutions simply had more money on hand than they had people who were qualified to borrow it. So they changed the law to create more demand for the money they had in oversupply.
economics  bailout  history  2008  crisis 
october 2008 by tsuomela » When Free Market Fantasies Collapse
In this sense, I think the Wall Street crisis is as much one of “cognitive confusion” and political disorientation as a genuine financial drama. Witness yesterday’s House rejection of the bailout, which saw staunch liberals joining hard-core Republicans in voting against the bailout, and less-senior members of both parties defying leadership. The new realities cannot be expressed within existing political configurations. Free-market dogmas are no longer credible, yet innovative alternatives are too underdeveloped and lacking leadership to attract a new political majority. We are living in an interregnum.
commons  economics  bailout  2008 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Analysing capitalism — Crooked Timber
The events of the last weeks have made me wonder about the agenda of contemporary analytical political philosophy. There are many ways to describe the current financial crisis, but it’s not implausible to say that the foundations of capitalism are shaking. Yet I find little help in contemporary analytical political philosophy to help me understand what’s going on.
economics  bailout  2008  philosophy  analytic-philosophy  justice 
october 2008 by tsuomela
Marginal Revolution: Where is the Credit Crunch?
Back in February I pointed out that despite all the talk of a credit crunch commercial and industrial loans were at an all-time high and increasing. At the time, Paul Krugman and others responded that this was just temporary as firms drew on previously existing lines of credit. Well here we are in September and bank credit continues to look very robust. As Robert Higgs points out consumer loans are up, commercial and industrial loans are up, even real estate loans are up. Overall, total bank credit is up with just a slight sign of leveling off in recent weeks. So where is the credit crunch?
credit  debt  crisis  bailout  banking  finance  2008 
september 2008 by tsuomela
CJR: Boiler Room
It seems to me that well into Year II of the Panic, the business press is in the process of making the same mistake it made in the run-up to the debacle: focusing on esoteric Wall Street concerns and ignoring the simplest, most basic, but most important one—the breathtaking corruption that overran the U.S. lending industry, including and especially the brand names, and the extent to which Wall Street drove that corruption. Let’s just call it a case of over-sophistication. Its persistence, however, will only impede journalists’ ability to cover this thing going forward.
economics  capitalism  crisis  criticism  media  news  corruption  fraud  2008 
september 2008 by tsuomela
A Liberal Shock Doctrine | The American Prospect
Progressive political change in American history is rarely incremental. With important exceptions, most of the reforms that have advanced our nation's status as a modern, liberalizing social democracy were pushed through during narrow windows of progressive opportunity -- which subsequently slammed shut with the work not yet complete. The post–Civil War reconstruction of the apartheid South, the Progressive Era remaking of the institutions of democratic deliberation, the New Deal, the Great Society: They were all blunt shocks. Then, before reformers knew what had happened, the seemingly sturdy reform mandate faded and Washington returned to its habits of stasis and reaction.
politics  progressive  history  legislation  strategy  tactics  2008 
august 2008 by tsuomela
All Spin Zone » John
Notice anything about McCain’s plan? It’s weighted pretty heavily at the top of the economic spectrum, and showers down little more than crumbs on Main Street. Yet these guys will still manage to convince Ma and Pa Sixpack to vote against their own economic interests, and support welfare for the mega-rich (at Ma and Pa’s expense).
politics  taxes  policy  2008 
august 2008 by tsuomela
Regional Policy Workshop
ning community for Citizen League planning workshop to be held 9/23/2008
ning  workshop  minnesota  minneapolis  conference  2008 
august 2008 by tsuomela
World Open Space on Open Space 2008
July 21 through July 28, 2008. In San Francisco, CA.
conference  2008  open-space  facilitation  group 
june 2008 by tsuomela
Conflux Festival
The art and technology festival for the creative exploration of urban public space.
2008  event  conference  activism  arts  festival  society  technology  urban  media 
may 2008 by tsuomela
Technology in Wartime
This conference will explore how computer technology is used during war -- both for the purposes of combat/defense, as well as for human rights interventions into war-torn regions. Topics will include high tech weapons systems, cyberwarfare, autonomous ai
technology  war  computers  philosophy  conference  2008  ethics 
february 2008 by tsuomela
NA-CAP@IU 2008 - The Limits of Computation
The International Association for Computing and Philosophy is pleased to announce its 2008 North American Conference to be held July 10th – 12th at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. This year's conference theme addresses the limits of computat
philosophy  technology  computing  science  conference  2008 
february 2008 by tsuomela

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