Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Another Day, Another Fraud

R. Allen Stanford, billionaire financier, was outed yesterday as Wall Street's latest fraud.  

Some may wonder why a billionaire would be willing to commit a serious financial crime and risk spending the rest of his life in prison.  Who knows?  Maybe that is how he got to be a billionaire in the first place.  The real question is this:  How much more damage to the confidence in the financial system can the public/markets bear?

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If you think America's political leaders are out of touch, they pale when compared to the Media Elite.

I watched in stunned awe as MSNBC's Chris Mathews and "Morning Joe" disparaged this front page article at the Washington Post.

"Surely things aren't THAT bad.  The New York Times today does not even mention the downturn.."  WTF??!! 

America's  Talking Heads make $5 to $50 million per year!  Of course things don't seem that bad to them!  (Not to mention that people kiss their a**, fawn all over them, and follow them around like puppies - all for the glow of celebrity.)  Unfortunately, this environment is not conducive to the Talking Head's understanding of what average folk's issues are, and, for the most part, all America knows is what it hears and sees on TV.

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Well, the new Housing Hail Mary from the Obama Administration is on the books.

Sorry to all you Obamaphiles out there, but this plan is DOOOOOMMMMED to failure.  See, the biggest pool of problem homes is in California nearly 35% of the U.S. eligible loans.  California is a "no recourse" state.  Folks with a mortgage there are only liable for the equity in the home should they walk away - the lender has no recourse to recoup any losses from income or other assets.  Any Californian that signs up for this program will lose that.  People are not that dumb, and even if they were this data point will be ALL OVER THE WEB in 12 hours.

The market is going to settle the value and prices of houses, not this silly bill.  It made for good theatre - more "Change We Need" (lololololololololol!!  where are those nitwits that were emailing me that Obama would end the wars and bring the troops home?!  Last time I checked, he is building up troop levels in AFGHANISTAN (of all places).  Haven't the Soviets been there done that?  Anybody notice any troops coming home from Iraq?  When exactly will Gitmo get closed?  Wanna BET??)

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Howard  Davidowitz, retail analyst and quintessential New Yorker, is interviewed here... "The worst is yet to come".

Like me, Davidowitz says that America's standard of living is going to contract in devastating fashion.  "Going to?" I live in THE land of conspicuous consumption - and it is a LOT LESS conspicuous around here lately.

He has been around a long time, and is always worth a couple of minutes.  

Good Luck!

Mentatt (at) Yahoo (d0t) com







5 comments:

Donal Lang said...

I had high hopes for Obama. First of all, I thought he had the integrity and intelligence to 'say it like it is'. Then, when he didn't, I thought maybe he's saying what people can live with, but will subtly do something sensible - like putting investment into infrastructure projects that will serve for the real future economy, i.e. expensive oil, small cars, alt energy, low-input farming, etc.
Now I think he's wasting his mandate and the people's trust in him, and it's hard to understand because he's the first President who's not in hock to big-business campaign contributions.
Disappointing!

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Hey Donal:

The presidency does not have the power that many of us think it does. Presidents are swept up in the tidal flow of a much larger-than-the-office entrenched interest group(s).

Listening to his childlike supporters during the campaign was like watching Princess Diana's minions. They imbued the target of their affection with mystical powers, and convinced themselves that mere talk will make it so.

The other issue is that as a candidate, Obama might be critical of policies the REAL issues of which he is completely unaware. Once in office, the briefing data is somewhat less convenient.

Donal Lang said...

Yeah, I suppose becoming President at the moment is like falling off a cliff, and then trying to learn to fly!

Over here in Blighty, the news is looking sad and grey. The only exciting thing to look forward to is the public hanging of Bankers & Traders from the lamposts, which will probably start next week.

Hey Greg; isn't that what YOU used to do?? Better keep your head down! ;-)

Greg T. Jeffers said...

I was a "Wall Street working stiff", not a "Master of the Universe."

I am counting on my working class credentials to keep me from the Guillotine!

sharon said...

thanks for the information....

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Sharon
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