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I'm going forward in my paper quest in the attempt to understand how the financial world actually works. This weekend I had my fun with the book: Too Big To Fail.
While the previous one was written by an ex-Lehman worker, this one has been written by a journalist that based it on the accounts and tales of the various actors involved in the drama.
And the difference between the two is enormous. While in the first one the author basically was pointing his finger to Lehman's CEO and was defending everybody else as a super-intelligent-clever-financial genius (and by extension himself), the second one shows Fuld (Lehman's Ceo) as a competent person that simply started too late to do anything and when he did he couldn't found anybody to help him out of the situation.
The rest of Wall Street's 'fauna' is pictured more or less in the same way. A lot of them realize that a big-ass crysis is behind the corner but they either wait for somebody else to do something (government's bailout) or they simply think "one less competitor" without seeing beyond their own noses.
And when things gets way too big to be ignored or hidden under the carpet they run to the Feds crying for a way out of the mess. And the bigger the company the more they cry.
On his own the government, in the person of the Treasure's Secretary, is presented in quite a peculiar way. On one side he doesn't want to get really involved, he thinks that the government should regulate as little as possible and not get directly involved in the day-to-day running of the financial market, on the other hand however, it's clear that the point where they can simply wait and watch has been passed and the question is no longer "should we get in" but "how deep do we want to go"?
Another peculiar thing is when the aforementioned Treasure's Secretary begin his investigation in "how bad the situation is" at Lehman. One of the things that he admit is "I couldn't really understand some of the 'products' they were putting in their books".
You're the fscking Secretary of the Federal Treasure! You have a fscking PHD! You have a fscking office chocked full of other PHDs working for you and you can't fscking understand how they works???
Hey stupid! How about passing a simple law that says "if you can't explain how it works you can't sell it"? Huh? All right, we'll lose 99.9999999% of all the financial 'products', are we going to miss them?
And now, allow me to reconnect with the wave of comments that I received related to my other comment the other day. In specific to the bulk of the comments that I haven't published (and I'm not going to do).
First of all that the root cause of the problem was a combination of frauds and good-old greed was clear. But I shall remind that 'greed' (aka: wanting more) is what drove the humans out of the caves and to build rockets to the moon. So greed on his own is not such a bad thing. But keep stuffing each sentence with acronyms won't make you look any smarter.
Then if someone write "I am an economist" (how do you become 'economist'? do you just say it like this or do you need to sign up in some kind of a club? do you get a plastic ID or is it something like the masonry?) "and how this stuff works I can almost understand" (my enphasis), well, it doesn't impress me very much. Sorry but "understanding" is a finite and non-divisible entity, you either understand something or you do not understand it.
Saying that you almost understand something is like to say that you don't understand it at all. And when an 'economist' says that he doesn't understand economic stuff it doesn't really impress me. More or less like when the various ULs around here tells me that they are Project Manager but can't figure out computers.
Here is my Idea (with capital 'I') to solve all the financial problems in the world: we get a huge sack and we chuck into it all those super-clever, super-intelligent, super-prepared econimical-financial geniuses, then we close the sack and we throw it down Niagara's falls. Allright, I know it won't happen, can't I dream?
Comments are added when and more important if I have the time to review them and after removing Spam, Crap, Phishing and the like. So don't hold your breath. And if your comment doesn't appear, is probably becuase it wasn't worth it.
la comprensione By sky posted 28/12/2009 14:23
@ sky By Mauro Pietrobelli posted 29/12/2009 08:08
soluzione By Adriano posted 28/12/2009 15:17
@ Adriano By Davide Bianchi posted 28/12/2009 15:29
Credo... By Andros posted 29/12/2009 08:15
@ Andros By Davide Bianchi posted 29/12/2009 09:08
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