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Geithner and Summers need to go
Posted: 02 May 2009 07:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]  
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Posted: 08 May 2009 07:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]  
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teuchter - 25 April 2009 09:28 PM

Holy shit!
You two have spent 4,339 words on page 2 of this thread alone, and for what?

TH, if you would just read the Bill Moyers interview that Lindajean linked to in the OP, then this SHOULD be a very short discussion.

WILLIAM K. BLACK: […]. They’re afraid that if they admit the truth, that   many of the large banks are insolvent.

Get it?  The banks are insolvent!

So, if we buy the “toxic” assets (oh, forgive, in Geitner speak they are “legacy assets”) at market value, the banks will still be insolvent.  And therefore, the Geitner plan either (a) is meant to buy these assets at grossly inflated prices, effecting a massive transfer of public money to private parties or (b)is meant to buy them at market prices leaving the banks insolvent.

Hence, this is obviously a plan which will rip us off, and enrich the fuckwits who already ripped us off.

And that took 155 words.

Nowhere did I suggest the banks are healthy.  And again, you guys are blinded by your devotion to this fairy tale where the tax payers can still come out of this well off somehow.  That boat has sailed.  The tax payer got screwed.  Sucks.  But that’s far from the financial damage that could be done to those same tax payers if the economy falls apart completely.  Maybe if you read the argument I was making within those thousands of words you’d be better informed of what I was actually arguing and why I’m arguing it.  :/

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Posted: 08 May 2009 08:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]  
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lindajean - 26 April 2009 11:13 AM

I’ve never argued that things don’t need to be stable long term.

Long term stabilization has absolutely nothing to do with your comment there.  In fact, your comment is 100% confined within the relevance of the SHORT TERM.  You are back pedalling here. 

We also need criminal investigations for those who committed fraud.

Definitely.

Are you becoming a little unraveled here?  :-)

It’s frustrating to have to repeat the same things over and over to someone who normally does well comprehending relatively simple arguments.  That’s the situation I’m in over here.  Not unravelled at all.  Frustrated sure…but not unravelled.

He is talking about restructuring the banks.  No one is saying the restructuring should happen in 24 hours. Yes, the restructuring is a process that needs to be done meticulously. I’m not arguing against any of that.  This will be a serious and diligent endeavor.

Ummmm…yeah.  That’s kinda my point.  It will take a while and during that time the markets will react negatively in a very big way.  Hence my point that we need to make sure things are stabilized before moving into that reform phase.

That is before a 700 billion TARP plan, a 800 billion stimulus plan and Geithner’s plan to have taxpayers subsidize toxic assets.

It was last fall during the bailout debate.  All these same economists were making the exact arguments I’m making today about the consequences of large scale events on the stock markets (and thus the national economy) as they are dangerously volatile.  This was during the bailout debate AFTER they knew about the size of the bailout funds.  And these same economists fully backed Obama’s stimulus spending.  Hell, most of them thought it should be more! 

My point is that you have misunderstood what they are saying.  They are NOT saying we shouldn’t stabilize things and that we shoulda announced major reforms when the market was losing a thousand points a week earlier this year.  They agree with me on that and I with them.  You keep parading them around as if they agree with you that we coulda been doing this stuff in the type of volatile markets we saw in Q1 of this year.  They weren’t saying that.  They DO agree with you that we shouldn’t trust Geithner’s intentions for much longer and I agree with you guys on that. 

Comparing then with now is apples and oranges.

No.  It is the EXACT same thing.  Their arguments for why we shouldn’t make huge waves in dangerously volatile markets when those markets are the bedrock of our national economy is identical to my point here. 

The issue is that his short term policy is dangerous.  No one is supporting it. And you continuously avoid providing me with quotes from all of these people who agree with you.

What policy are you referring to?  Here is the problem lindajean…there are two very important realms of concern with the current crisis.  One revolves around fairness to the tax payer in terms of how taxes are spent.  The other revolves around recouping the health of the overall national economy.  You simply keep refusing to consider the important elements of the latter as if it was meaningless.  The reality is that the latter is FAR more important because if you care about the tax payers you sure as hell ought to care about whether or not those tax payers have jobs in the future or can afford to pay higher prices for family staples going forward. 

And if you want quotes, you need to ask for them.  Hell, if you want quotes, just look at what these same ppl were saying about the necessity of keeping these banks afloat last fall.  There’s no shortage of Krugman interviews where he makes the EXACT case I’m making vis a vis the financial dependence the rest of our natinoal economy has on these banks.  Don’t pretend that this is the first time you’ve heard of this.  You were watching these arguments being made last fall just like the rest of us were and you were right there saying we needed the bailout to go through explicitly for this very reason lindajean.  Don’t plead ignorance now.

You keep trying to conflate MY argument, which revolves around stabilizing the markets that our national economy depends on before implementing the reforms we all agree need to happen, with Geithner’s plans which nobody outside of the White House knows the details of (for better or worse).  And then you say that since economists have objections to Geithner’s plans being made permanent (as if that was what I was arguing somehow) they therefore all support your claims over my argument.  But that’s not an honest argument lindajean. 

They can agree with both of us in terms of whether or not we need dramatic banking reform.  They can share both of our concerns about letting Geithner keep running things the way he has been in terms of the tax payer perspective.  They can likewise completely agree with me that we HAVE to have a stabilized stock market before we can implement those reforms otherwise we put our national economy in severe risk and the overall impact this would have if our economy collapsed into a deep depression isn’t simply economic…it’s also cause for concern over national security interests etc.  As such, the other perspective which is where Geithner is coming from MUST be considered openly.

And in fact, those economists DO agree with me on those things and they made the same arguments I’m making last fall when we were also looking into the thick web of financial dependence that makes these banks too big to fail responsibly.  They made those arguments with Bush, Cheney and Paulson running things. Where do you think that $700bil figure came from lindajean? 

Again, no one is arguing against stabilizing the market, but subsidizing toxic waste with taxpayer dollars with no accountability is not what most people would have imagined when he spoke of “stabilization.”

Your entire argument for wanting these guys fired was that they have done nothing but harm during their time in power which is simply false.  Independent of that, I’ve also argued that these men’s ties to Wall St. can and should be exploited by President Obama in the reforms stage and we ought not fire them when they can still be used.  And I’m not interested in what common folk consider “stabilization”.  I’m interested in what the markets find stabilizing because guess what, they are the only ppl that matter not because they deserve their influence, but simply because they have that influence nonetheless. 

The proof is in the pudding and the undeniable fact is that Geithner’s efforts HAVE worked wonders toward stabilizing the most volatile market closing we’ve possibly ever seen in this country.  It’s easy to say that was worthless and wasteful and pretend he didn’t help things any.  But it’s not reality.  He did GREAT things thus far coming from the national economy perspective.  That said, the time is soon coming for progressive reform from the tax payer’s perspective that he likely wouldn’t agree with.

[ Edited: 08 May 2009 08:56 PM by tavishhill2003]
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Posted: 16 May 2009 09:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]  
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Tavish:

You argue that Geithner should stay on because he will stablize the markets and that when the markets become strong again then we can start to make changes in regulation and rules about Wall Street. 

I disagree with you that these changes are even going to happen. If you disagree, give me some evidence that you see they will. Congress isn’t doing anything, BHO says he is too busy fighting wars to nationalize or restructure.  Yes, Geithner can do some short term stabilising but nothing is going to change in regards to all the conflicts of interests and financial systems continuing to be too big to fail and the taxpayers continuing to bail them out.  When you refer to last fall Geithner wasn’t even on board.  Yes, initially the belief last September was the banks are too-big-to-fail by many economist and a band aid approach was recommended then.  But even in Oct   I was saying let them fail:

(http://www.samharris.org/forum/viewthread/10924/P15/)

Obama promised change in how things would be done. There is no indication that he is going to bring about any change in the financial world and that is my main point in this thread, and where your argument is weak.  BHO needs to get rid of these guys so that he can make some much-needed changes through regulations.  It is not going to happen with these two on board. BHO does not want the government nationalizing wall street.  He has said that explicitly.  No nationalization, no restructuring, SOS.


An interesting interview below on May 12, 2009.
Excerpts from Eliot Spritzer’s views of the economy:


...Now, what is deeply problematic to me and I think to many people these days is that $1 trillion later, trillions of dollars later - the word billion sounds almost quaint these days in terms of bailing them out - we have spent trillions of dollars.  Not nearly enough is changing.

...We are rebuilding the same edifice.  We are re-establishing the primacy of the same companies.  We are still building in a too-big-to-fail structure so we as taxpayers will be guarantors of companies that when they get in trouble again, we will bail them out.
None of this is being confronted by the administration as they and we, through our tax dollars, resuscitate a broken system. 

...Tim Geithner said something very interesting during his confirmation hearings.  He said, “I have never been a regulator.”  And I said, “Wait a minute.  You were the president of the New York fed.  Of course, you were supposed to be a regulator.  You were the overseer of the banks.”

....Now, I have written some stuff and others have written some stuff about the structure of the New York fed.  The problem at the New York fed and the New York fed is the organization that has dispensed through loan guarantees, through straight cash intervention, trillions of dollars, with a T.

...He (geithner)  was chosen by the CEOs of the banks.  The New York fed is dominated by CEOs of the very banks that failed, who have received this huge sum of money.  They have not been willing to acknowledge the fundamental failure of the system over which they had jurisdiction.  He was supposed to be a regulator, but he didn‘t want to see it that way.  And that is an issue we‘ve got to come to grips with.

...  Let me put it this way.  We had a vote in the United States Senate last week - maybe this week - where the issue before United States Senate was whether judges in the bankruptcy context would permitted to what they call cram down reform mortgages so people wouldn‘t be thrown out of their houses.

... Virtually, every thoughtful person has said this makes sense.  This is a good way to keep people in their homes, avoid foreclosures, stabilize the housing market.  The banks that have received the trillion dollars opposed it.  Twelve Democratic senators did not vote for it.  It lost.

Dick Durbin, who is in my mind, a hero, the one voice in the United States Senate who stood up and said, “What is going on?”  The White House didn‘t push back adequately.

.... This is an easy issue.  Now, so what is going on with our Democratic senators that they sit by passively, know this is going to go through.  They have not confronted the issue of too-big-to-fail.  They have not confronted the issue of where the trillion dollars has gone.

...You know, at a deeper level, everybody says we overleveraged our economy.  And we needed to de-leverage because we had a period asset - increasing asset valuation, low interest rates and we were borrowing ourselves to death.

...All true.  We haven‘t de-leveraged.  All we‘ve done is switch the obligation from the banks to the taxpayer - to us.

...And so, we are bailing them out and we‘re not getting

anything back in terms of changed structure, changed responsibility.  There hasn‘t been one bank CEO who has been told to leave, one senior executiverisk manager who has been said - to whom it has been said, “You failed”

You know, people say we want to purport here, referring back to the 1930s when after the Depression - or during the Depression, after the great crash, people said, “We need to figure out what happened.”  The analogy isn‘t accurate.  We know what happened. We just aren‘t willing to hold people accountable. 


...  But nobody in Washington right now is seriously challenging that premise.  Krugman is, (UNINTELLIGIBLE) is, the president of the fed in Kansas City is.  Wonderful speeches, but nobody in Washington is waiting to say, “Wait a minute.  This notion of enormous banks is failing.  And that is what took us over the cliff.”

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/30766509/


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26315908/

 

tavishhill
That said, the time is soon coming for progressive reform from the tax payer’s perspective that he likely wouldn’t agree with.

This is correct and that is why they must go.
Again, I have seen no indication that any reform is coming.  I have seen some indication that none if any will.

And BTW:  When is the “time soon coming” going to arrive?

[ Edited: 16 May 2009 11:30 AM by zelzo]
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Posted: 17 May 2009 11:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]  
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lindajean - 16 May 2009 01:04 PM

Tavish:

You argue that Geithner should stay on because he will stablize the markets and that when the markets become strong again then we can start to make changes in regulation and rules about Wall Street.

No. My argument is that this is why they are good choices for their positions thus far as they have done great to acheive their goals vis a vis stabilizing the economic situation for businesses across the spectrum. My argument for why they should stay on is completely different and is based on the fact that you gain nothing from them leaving, but can gain much from keeping them on as figureheads to act as ambassadors to Wall St.  This makes them very useful to keep on. 

I think Obama should keep them on and use them in this measure while bringing in other top economic thinkers who will be more progressive with regulatory policy going forward.  These policies aren’t going to be welcomed on Wall St. most likely and for that reason, Summers and Geithner can help work with the administration to mend over those tensions a bit, which is important. 

Don’t confuse my two, seperate arguments for the two different discussions we’ve had in the thread.  One revolves around why these men are very good choices for their positions given the top priority goal for the administration (stabilizing the business markets).  The other revolves around basic cost benefit analysis.  You gain something from keeping them on and avoid losing something substantial (we don’t need yet another day where Wall St. has an excuse to drop off their shares in opposition to administration decisions) whereas you gain absolutely nothing whatsoever from firing them.  So if you aren’t forced to nix them, I say don’t.

I disagree with you that these changes are even going to happen. If you disagree, give me some evidence that you see they will. Congress isn’t doing anything, BHO says he is too busy fighting wars to nationalize or restructure.

That’s not true at all. Congress is doing a lot right now regarding regulation and legislation going forward.  They are half of the solution themselves and they have done well so far in coming up with good ideas for their part.  They won’t ever be perfect, but to assert they are doing nothing shows you aren’t following the capitol very closely. 

And you are taking Obama’s comment out of context.  He wasn’t being literal.  No one actually thinks he would personally be running the restructuring process.  Congress would be doing that.  His comment was just another coy way to avoid answering the question of nationalization.  Also, Obama himself has said he is working on more progressive policies going forward and Krugman and Steiglitz were called in to give their ideas on those policies recently, which you no doubt heard about.  Politically, it also makes a lot of sense to do this during the summer Congressional break to avoid most of the backchatter from republican senators on tv. 

Yes, Geithner can do some short term stabilising but nothing is going to change in regards to all the conflicts of interests and financial systems continuing to be too big to fail and the taxpayers continuing to bail them out.

We agree that Obama shouldn’t just let Geithner handle things indefinitely going forward.  But you shouldn’t be dismissing the importance of his efforts thus far to stabilize the markets.  You keep speaking of that as if it was unnecessary or easy to do somehow or a ‘waste of time’.  Regardless of what you want to imagine, you CANNOT hope to pass any progressive policies at all without stabilizing things first.  The economists you try to appeal to for your arguments agree with me on that.  But no one is suggesting we just let Geithner run things indefinitely.  Keeping him on doesn’t mean I think he ought to run things forever.

When you refer to last fall Geithner wasn’t even on board.  Yes, initially the belief last September was the banks are too-big-to-fail by many economist and a band aid approach was recommended then.

 

When I refer to last fall I’m noting the fact that without stabilization, NO regulatory policies can be pushed without potentially ruining our entire economy outside Wall St. because the their web is simply too far reaching within the financial nervous system of businesses big and small in this country.  It was true then and it was just as true in early 2009 when the market was just as volatile before Geithner and Summers worked to stabilize things. 

Today it is a different story thanks to those men.  THAT is why we can realistically see a discussion between different economists about forward looking policy agendas.  We wouldn’t be seeing ANY of those discussions if the markets were still that volatile.  They wouldn’t support your argument that we can get away with such progressive policies in those conditions.  We know this because they were in those shoes last fall and they didn’t agree with your argument.  They agreed with mine.  Stop trying to conflate the context of my arguments please.

But even in Oct I was saying let them fail:

So you completely disagreed with Krugman and all these same economists you are touting now back in October?  I’m making the EXACT same arguments they all made for the need for stabilization in a national economy.  Sorry, but you don’t get to tout them in an appeal to authority only when they agree with you and then ignore them when they don’t.

And the belief hasn’t changed because it’s not just a belief that they’re too big to fail…it’s reality.  According to all those same economists you tout today.  I’ve given you their arguments and logic and you simply dismiss them out of hand without offering ANY counter arguments. 

Obama promised change in how things would be done.

He didn’t promise you anything personally.  Voting for a president doesn’t mean he/she is required to do your bidding.  He will do things you agree with and things you don’t agree with.  Get over it.  There are several reasonable and intelligible perspectives on some topics outside of your own and you shouldn’t just dismiss them out of hand because they don’t agree with your views on every detail.

There is no indication that he is going to bring about any change in the financial world and that is my main point in this thread, and where your argument is weak.  BHO needs to get rid of these guys so that he can make some much-needed changes through regulations.  It is not going to happen with these two on board. BHO does not want the government nationalizing wall street.  He has said that explicitly.  No nationalization, no restructuring, SOS.

You are assuming that if he keeps them on they automatically will keep full control of the economic policies.  You don’t know that and the fact that Obama brought in the two top economists of the last decade suggests he is fully open to hearing their views and thoughtfully considering them.  But again, my argument is NOT that he automatically will do what I want him to.  My arguments are about what he SHOULD do…just as your arguments are.  BOTH of our arguments are speculative.  Get over i

This is correct and that is why they must go.

That one line assertion isn’t a substitute for a coherent, full throttled argument countering my argument for why they should stay.

And BTW:  When is the “time soon coming” going to arrive?

You keep asking this.  And I keep telling you.  After the fiscal year is over at the end of June, that would be an ideal time to get this process going.  It may not be immediately after that since it’d make most sense to wait until the various businesses throughout the country report their end of year results to their shareholders which usually happens in mid-late July.  So hoepfully we see new more progressive policies popping up by the end of August at the very latest.  So in short, sometime as early as July but maybe as late as August sometime.  That’s not at all unreasonable.  So stop trying to dress up the questions as if it is some sort of gotchya interview where I keep refusing to answer it.  I’ve answered it over and over.

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Posted: 17 May 2009 06:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]  
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LJ

You argue that Geithner should stay on because he will stablize the markets and that when the markets become strong again then we can start to make changes in regulation and rules about Wall Street.

Tavishhill (TH)


No.


Huh….you are not arguing that Geithner needs to stablize the markets?  You are not arguing that when all is “stable” (whatever that means)  we can make changes and bring on reform?

TH
My argument is that this is why they are good choices for their positions thus far as they have done great to acheive their goals vis a vis stabilizing the economic situation for businesses across the spectrum.

Right…..that Geithner needs to stay on to stablize the markets (which you just denied when I said that is part of your argument.)

TH
My argument for why they should stay on is completely different and is based on the fact that you gain nothing from them leaving, but can gain much from keeping them on as figureheads to act as ambassadors to Wall St.  This makes them very useful to keep on.


And the need for ambassadors to wall street has not ever been established and is again, your opinion and not anything that has been shown to be a necessity.  If you want to use the need for ambassadors in your argument, lets just be clear that it is your opinion and not a fact.

TH
I think Obama should keep them on and use them in this measure while bringing in other top economic thinkers who will be more progressive with regulatory policy going forward.  These policies aren’t going to be welcomed on Wall St. most likely and for that reason, Summers and Geithner can help work with the administration to mend over those tensions a bit, which is important.


Of course!  We don’t want to anger those Wall Street Gods (WSG) now do we?  G and S need to keep the tensions at bay because what would happen if the WSG’s get angry?  (I’m wringing my hands in contemplation.)

TH
Don’t confuse my two, seperate arguments for the two different discussions we’ve had in the thread.

Nothing to confuse here…just fatigue from repetition setting in….

TH
One revolves around why these men are very good choices for their positions given the top priority goal for the administration (stabilizing the business markets).  The other revolves around basic cost benefit analysis.  You gain something from keeping them on and avoid losing something substantial (we don’t need yet another day where Wall St. has an excuse to drop off their shares in opposition to administration decisions) whereas you gain absolutely nothing whatsoever from firing them.  So if you aren’t forced to nix them, I say don’t.

No confusion on my part. You spent (how many weeks) saying this over and over again. ...but nothing substantial to back it up with—-you know, like maybe some quotes from other people who study this field and who agree with you instead of continuing to bark up the same tree.

TH
That’s not true at all. Congress is doing a lot right now regarding regulation and legislation going forward.  They are half of the solution themselves and they have done well so far in coming up with good ideas for their part.  They won’t ever be perfect, but to assert they are doing nothing shows you aren’t following the capitol very closely.

Yes like not voting for bankruptcy changes so people who are losing their homes could have a better chance to keep them. Congress is   like the tooth fairy doling out a few quarters under our pillows while hundreds of thousands of people continue to foreclose on their homes.

TH
And you are taking Obama’s comment out of context.  He wasn’t being literal.  No one actually thinks he would personally be running the restructuring process.

I never said that he would.

TH

Congress would be doing that.  His comment was just another coy way to avoid answering the question of nationalization.

 

Coy to point of not answering a question that in all seriousness needs to be considered and answered.

TH
We agree that Obama shouldn’t just let Geithner handle things indefinitely going forward.  But you shouldn’t be dismissing the importance of his efforts thus far to stabilize the markets.

And you so far have given me no reason to not “dismiss the importance of his efforts” except to say that his efforts are necessary.

TH
You keep speaking of that as if it was unnecessary or easy to do somehow or a ‘waste of time’.  Regardless of what you want to imagine, you CANNOT hope to pass any progressive policies at all without stabilizing things first.  The economists you try to appeal to for your arguments agree with me on that.

They do?  Here is Krugman back in October, 2008:

Thinking the bailout through

What is this bailout supposed to do? Will it actually serve the purpose? What should we be doing instead? Let’s talk.

Let’s not be railroaded into accepting an enormously expensive plan that doesn’t seem to address the real problem.

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/10/08/to-do-not-to-do/

That was almost 9 months ago he was warning us about simply throwing money at the problem which of course we are still doing.

TH
But no one is suggesting we just let Geithner run things indefinitely.  Keeping him on doesn’t mean I think he ought to run things forever.

You did say he should not be fired and he needs to stay on in some capacity (whatever that may be is ambiguous.) My argument is he should not be Sec of Treasury for the reasons I have in depth explained.  If BHO wants to give him some desk job in the administration that is irrelevant.  My point is he has too much power and is too close to Wall Street.

TH
When I refer to last fall I’m noting the fact that without stabilization, NO regulatory policies can be pushed without potentially ruining our entire economy outside Wall St. because the their web is simply too far reaching within the financial nervous system of businesses big and small in this country.  It was true then and it was just as true in early 2009 when the market was just as volatile before Geithner and Summers worked to stabilize things.

Sure, which is why most economist disagree with you!

TH
Today it is a different story thanks to those men.


With more WSGs not being held accountable and no reform so far….

TH
THAT is why we can realistically see a discussion between different economists about forward looking policy agendas.  We wouldn’t be seeing ANY of those discussions if the markets were still that volatile.  They wouldn’t support your argument that we can get away with such progressive policies in those conditions.  We know this because they were in those shoes last fall and they didn’t agree with your argument.  They agreed with mine.  Stop trying to conflate the context of my arguments please.

Well, I guess you’ll have t talk to my friend Paul about conflation:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/28/opinion/28krugman.html

And the story of how “we” failed to see this coming has a clear policy implication — namely, that financial market reform should be pressed quickly, that it shouldn’t wait until the crisis is resolved.


Those words,  BTW were written in November, 2008.

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Posted: 17 May 2009 06:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]  
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LJ

But even in Oct I was saying let them fail

TH


So you completely disagreed with Krugman and all these same economists you are touting now back in October?

No, not at all.  I thought the banks should fail (meaning go into restructure or bankruptcy) Krugman was saying that the banks need to have someone in the Fed overseeing them and he was saying that reform and an overall reformation should take place immediately.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/28/opinion/28krugman.html


And because we’re all so worried about the current crisis, it’s hard to focus on the longer-term issues — on reining in our out-of-control financial system, so as to prevent or at least limit the next crisis. Yet the experience of the last decade suggests that we should be worrying about financial reform, above all regulating the “shadow banking system” at the heart of the current mess, sooner rather than later.

(That was a statement from 11/08.)

TH

I’m making the EXACT same arguments they all made for the need for stabilization in a national economy.

You are?  You really, really, really must (I insist) start putting some quotes and references into these conversations.  Because your lack of evidence here is non-existent.

TH

  Sorry, but you don’t get to tout them in an appeal to authority only when they agree with you and then ignore them when they don’t.

Please provide evidence of where I am “ignoring”  anyone.  I certainly can disagree with people on one level of argument and agree with them on another.  You really, really, really cannot write the rules here although I understand you are needing to grasp at straws.  I’ll have to write “no touting allowed” down in my playbook so I don’t forget and break your rules.

TH

And the belief hasn’t changed because it’s not just a belief that they’re too big to fail…it’s reality.  According to all those same economists you tout today.  I’ve given you their arguments and logic and you simply dismiss them out of hand without offering ANY counter arguments.

You have offered nothing of others’ arguments—-no quotes, no references, no exact words of what people have stated. All that you have offered on here are leaves blowing in the wind with your own personal opinions and speculations.  Again, give me quotes.

LJ

Obama promised change in how things would be done.

TH

He didn’t promise you anything personally.


I never said he did.

TH

Voting for a president doesn’t mean he/she is required to do your bidding.

 

I never said he was suppose to do any personal bidding for me.  He did make campaign promises to reform how Washington does business in relation to Wall Street and corporate America.

TH

He will do things you agree with and things you don’t agree with.

Really?  This is getting overly profound.

TH

Get over it.

Get over what?

TH

There are several reasonable and intelligible perspectives on some topics outside of your own and you shouldn’t just dismiss them out of hand because they don’t agree with your views on every detail.

Please provide the “reasonable and intelligible perspectives” so that I can read them and we can discuss them! It is difficult to dismiss something that I have not had a chance to read and think about.

TH

You are assuming that if he keeps them on they automatically will keep full control of the economic policies.


No I am assuming nothing of the sort.  I am making a statement that the head of Treasury needs to go because he is in bed with wall street and as long as he is the head of treasury there will be no reform. If he wants to keep him on in some different innocuous capacity that isn’t even worth commenting on because that would be a moot argument to make.

LJ
This is correct and that is why they must go.

TH

That one line assertion isn’t a substitute for a coherent, full throttled argument countering my argument for why they should stay.

Huh….....??????

TH

So hoepfully we see new more progressive policies popping up by the end of August at the very latest.  So in short, sometime as early as July but maybe as late as August sometime.  That’s not at all unreasonable.

I would like to see what your answer to my question will be on September 1.

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Posted: 20 May 2009 12:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]  
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lindajean - 17 May 2009 10:16 PM

...SNIP…

(That was a statement from 11/08.)

And?  It says we need to also worry about reform.  Who was ever suggesting we should ignore reform?  Not me.  My point is that when you say that they aren’t too big to fail, those economists disagreed with you last fall and supported the bailout entirely because of that fact.  And the reason they supported it wasn’t because they were drinking Obama kool-aid nor was it done to annoy you.  They made those arguments because it was true.  The bailout was done entirely to stabilize the markets ebcause any major progressive policy initatives simply cannot be implemented in a violent market without big consequences.  That’s not something I just made up.  It was THEIR arguments from last fall and it still held true in early 2009 when the markets were still volatile.

You are?  You really, really, really must (I insist) start putting some quotes and references into these conversations.  Because your lack of evidence here is non-existent.

Go to youtube and watch any Paul Krugman clip from last fall.  It’s really rather simple.  It feels like you are fundamentally misunderstanding the arugment I am making as this is absurdly obvious lindajean.  I’ll try again and if you still don’t get it, I’ll find the interviews for you. 

My argument is that, in an extremely volatile market, we can’t make drastic policy decisions without potentially drastic consequences.  This is far more dangerous than merely being ‘significant’ downturns to the market for a day or two.  We are talking about the bottom completely falling out of the institutions who fund the vast majority of American businesses and thus, our national economy.  So, when major changes are required, as they are presently, we have to be careful to prepare those markets first by stabilizing them a bit and stopping the bleeding.  You don’t wanna add any downward inertia to violently wavering markets if that inertia is tot he tune of thousand-point losses over a few day period. 

Those economists you quote are NOT making the arugment you did earlier…namely that we coulda just ignored the stabilization phase and went straight to the new policy part without severe economic consequences.  They were agreeing that we need to stabilize things FIRST, just as I’ve argued here.  THEN we need the new policies. 

Please provide evidence of where I am “ignoring”  anyone.  I certainly can disagree with people on one level of argument and agree with them on another.  You really, really, really cannot write the rules here although I understand you are needing to grasp at straws.  I’ll have to write “no touting allowed” down in my playbook so I don’t forget and break your rules.

So you find nothing wrong with taking the economists’ argumetns out of the dsicussion’s proper context, using them as an appeal to authority (fallacy), and then “forgetting” the very arguments these authority figures were making AGAINST your claims within the proper context of the discussion we’ve been having in this thread?  You find that to be honest discussion?  Come on now…

You have offered nothing of others’ arguments—-no quotes, no references, no exact words of what people have stated. All that you have offered on here are leaves blowing in the wind with your own personal opinions and speculations.  Again, give me quotes.

I feel like it isn’t worth digging up quotes when you and I are both accutely aware of the arguments these ppl were making last fall.  If you require quotes, I’ll find you entire interviews if you ask.  But it is rather strange that you suddenly have a memory lapse when thinking about one of the biggest legislative debates in the last decade happening a few months ago.  Do you really not remember all the times Krugman went on Olbermann et al to talk about how we needed to bail out the banks because letting them flounder in the type of super volatile markets we had at that time would destroy the rest of our natinoal economy?  You hoenstly don’t remember the entire reason why ppl supported the bailout and the basic arguments they were making? 

Again, if you demand quotes, I’ll find the Olbermann interviews etc, etc, etc but I find it rather convenient for you to suddenly forget those arguments were being made last fall or the context with which they were being made (which is the exact context I am speaking from when I say we HAD to stabilize the markets before ANY mreaingful policy changes could be announced). 

I wanna get you on the record saying you somehow forget about these basic elements of the bailout debate before giving you the interviews and pointing out what ought to be obvious to you.  It is certainly bizarre that you make one post earlier pointing out what these economists were arguing last fall about the need for the bailout and the effects it’d have on our economy without one (i.e. the idea that these banks were/are too big to fail)...only to go on to play the blissful ignorance card when I note that these arguments were being made last fall by these exact same ppl.  Very selective memory you must have.

I never said he was suppose to do any personal bidding for me.  He did make campaign promises to reform how Washington does business in relation to Wall Street and corporate America.

Yes he did.  But to that he has to stabilize the economic markets first and foremost.  And his team has done that exceptionally well.  Now, he should move on to the types of things he wanted to do before the collapse which you referenced.  Hopefully he can make that happen.  But good policy is cold and well calculated.

Get over what?

The fact that you don’t control him simply beause you voted for him.  I’d go out on a limb and suggest you voted for him because he was really fucking intelligent.  Ok.  Given he knows far mroe about his economic agenda than we do, and considering that agends has done EXCEPTIONAL things to stabilize our national economic markets, I don’t find it at all unreasonable to hold off calling for firings until after the fiscal returns come in in a couple months.

Please provide the “reasonable and intelligible perspectives” so that I can read them and we can discuss them! It is difficult to dismiss something that I have not had a chance to read and think about.

I’ve been doing that ALL this thread!  Specifically speaking of the prospect of firing the two guys you wanna see fired or not, I noted that you can get the benefits of them being gone without any of the costs if Obama is clever about it AND on top of that you can even gain something by keeping them on as well politically and potentially some PR boost on Wall St., which is very important to how ppl view the markets. 

Here, I’ll break it down for you:

...if they are fired:

Pros:
-opens the door for more progressive economic policy

Cons:
-bad PR move for the administration politically
-REALLY bad PR move from the Wall St. perspective with guaranteed negative reaction in the markets immediately thereafter


...if Obama keeps them on board BUT also pulls in others to shape more progressive policies with or without these men’s help:

Pros:
-opens the door for more progressive economic policy
-these two men can still be used as PR figureheads to be ambassadors to Wall St. to help smooth the new legislation over
-avoids the bad PR from the other option

Cons:
-a handful of ppl on the left are annoyed


I see this as being pretty straight forward.  You don’t necessarily gain anything from firing them unless you assume option #2 is impossible.  But it isn’t impossible as Obama has reached out to ppl like Krugman et al recently to get their ideas as far as what should be the next policy move etc.  Now, you can’t really do my alternative in a half-assed way.  You need to truly get more progessive policies in place for the longer term.  But if we can get more progressive folks in there, that can certainly happen.  I don’t see what is lost doing it my way other than hurting your feelings.

This is the argument of mine you simply dismiss out of hand and simply assert that they have to go without an actual argument to support it.  I share your concerns and am aware of their proximity to Wall St.  But good policy is written by the dispassionate and our feeligns shouldn’t get in the way of an objectively smarter solution that covers a variety of angles.

No I am assuming nothing of the sort.  I am making a statement that the head of Treasury needs to go because he is in bed with wall street and as long as he is the head of treasury there will be no reform. If he wants to keep him on in some different innocuous capacity that isn’t even worth commenting on because that would be a moot argument to make.

But…that statement is based entirely on the assumption that there is no gray area in his job description which historically isn’t true.  The choice isn’t between keeping as the decision maker in the administration’s economic agenda versus firing him.  There is another choice which you’ve ignored, despite my efforts to note it for you.  Obama can avoid the PR issues firing these men will cause by not firing them AND also pull in other thinkers to help craft and implement more progressive policies.  And if those two guys don’t wanna get on board, fine.  They can sit on the sidelines and be mere figureheads or they can resign.  You keep pretending that this option isn’t available.  That was what I was pointing out.

 

Huh….....??????

I’m saying it is easy for you to simply say they should be fired…but you aren’t offering a counter argument to mine on that front. 

To recap, my argument is basically that these men can be used to help limit the fallout from the implementation of the regulations we all wanna see happening soon.  It also is a bad political move for Obama.  As such, it is better to keep them on IF he forces changes to the economic policy himself in a more progressive direction.  If they wanna fight that, then fine, at least he tried and if need be, he may need to fire them.  But if at all possible, their Wall St. links ought to be exploited for the best.

I would like to see what your answer to my question will be on September 1.

I don’t understand.  You keep asking the question over and over as if I’ve been dodging it somehow.  Yet from the get go I’ve given you nothing but direct answers that you really cannot argue are unreasonable.  You simply have this ignorant attitude that because I’m don’t agree with the naive viewpoint that Obama should fire them without even thinking about it therefore I’m kissing the administration’s ass.  Do you have any arguments to propell the discussion lindajean or are you just gonna sit there and make assertions and thinly veiled accusations? 

You don’t need to wait for my answer, you can have it now.  They need to get the ball rolling with some momentum before September.  If they aren’t making some reasonable progress by then vis a vis shaping and implementing new progressive policies, then they are making a mistake in my honest opinion (assuming the markets don’t collapse again, which I think is a pretty safe bet over the next couple months).  Can the bullshit already.  My answer is there in writing.  And if they don’t make progress by then, then that’ll disappoint me.  End of discussion.

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Posted: 20 May 2009 12:17 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]  
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I’ll reply to your first post tomorrow lindajean.  It’s late here and I didn’t see it there until just now.

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Posted: 20 May 2009 11:38 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]  
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lindajean - 17 May 2009 10:03 PM

Huh….you are not arguing that Geithner needs to stablize the markets?  You are not arguing that when all is “stable” (whatever that means)  we can make changes and bring on reform?

What you say here is a completely different premise than what you assigned to me earlier.  You said earlier that my argument that they shouldn’t be fired revolved around the need for stabilization.  That’s not true.  My arguments for why to keep them on has absolutely nothing to do with stabilization.  My argument for why they have done a good job thus far for the overall economy is because we needed that stabilization.  But those are two completely independent and autonomous arguments I was making.  And ones I’ve gone to great lengths to make sure you don’t conflate and/or misunderstand…which you did anyhow.  :/

Right…..that Geithner needs to stay on to stablize the markets (which you just denied when I said that is part of your argument.)

Again…no.  He doesn’t need to stay on to stabilize markets he has already stabilized.  He OUGHT to stay on because it makes sense logically.  You gain nothing but bad PR and a few bad days on Wall St. by firing him.  You can avoid that AND find some small benefits in keeping him on while also pulling in other ppl to work with Obama on reform.

And the need for ambassadors to wall street has not ever been established and is again, your opinion and not anything that has been shown to be a necessity.  If you want to use the need for ambassadors in your argument, lets just be clear that it is your opinion and not a fact.

Oh for fuck’s sake lindajean…READ my posts!  It most certainly HAS been established quite clearly already.  I’ll do it again.  When you announce the necessary reforms, it’ll have strong negative impacts on the markets for a short while.  If the administration can have these guys help pave over some of those tensions on Wall St. and push the new regulation policies to their buddies on Wall St., that’s a good thing as it will limit the fallout of such an announcement.  Will the world end without this buffer?  No.  But if we can avoid a few hundred points off the markets for over the course of a few days or a week then we should…especially when the only “cost” is changing these guys’ control internally and avoidance of the bad PR associated with firing them.

Of course!  We don’t want to anger those Wall Street Gods (WSG) now do we?  G and S need to keep the tensions at bay because what would happen if the WSG’s get angry?  (I’m wringing my hands in contemplation.)

You’re acting like an idiot lindajean.  Seriously, yer smarter than this.  It’s not complicated.  This has nothing to do with praying to the Wall St. gods.  You continue to push this narrative that I, someone who has no stock portfolio to speak of, am magically beholden to them somehow and it is complete fantasy on your part.  The markets aren’t simply made of Wall St. banks.  Stop being so damn naive.  They reflect the tangled web of funding that goes out to pay for our national economy from top to bottom.  You’re efforts to declare war on Wall St. is as ill informed as someone trying to declare war on the muslim world for 9/11.  You’ve imagined a boogie man where anything that can have up sides for them is by definition automatically disastrous for everyone else.  The real world is far more nuanced than that, and you know it, so give that schtick up already. 

What happens on Wall St. reflects what happens to the millions of businesses strung up in the bankers’ web.  You really need stop trying to attack Wall St. purely for the sake of attacking it.  You’re pissing on a mirage.  You have to put the economy first and when you do that you immediately see that one ought to keep these guys on to help limit the fallout of the new regulations.  Not because we like having Geithner around, but because it makes sense logically and we ought not put vengeance against emotionally fabricated boogie men above reality. 

If we can find a way to keep him on while also bringing in others to craft reform policies, then we get the best of both worlds and avoid the fallout of firing him.  The only argument you’ve offered thus far as to why he should be fired in light of this alternative is basically that you don’t like him and wanna see him fired.  That’s a pretty damn weak argument…and one that you refuse to back up with actual logic to this point.

No confusion on my part. You spent (how many weeks) saying this over and over again. ...but nothing substantial to back it up with—-you know, like maybe some quotes from other people who study this field and who agree with you instead of continuing to bark up the same tree.

I don’t form my arguments by appealing to authority like you do lindajean.  Economists aren’t in the business of forging political strategy.  The “field” that you speak of is that of political strategizing, not economics.  You have…again…conflated my two seperate arguments and attacked one based on your misunderstandings of the other.  My argument for keeping these guys on is basic logic.  You gain nothing from nixing them that you don’t also get from doing what I aruged for. 

Furthermore, you also avoid the problems that come from simply firing them and get some other small benefits to boot.  If you wanna dispute that, be my guest.  But here you are just asserting that I’ve offered nothing in support of the diea that these two men ought to stay on when all you need to do is read my posts spelling out the rather blatently obvious logic to see the reasons it makes sense.

Yes like not voting for bankruptcy changes so people who are losing their homes could have a better chance to keep them. Congress is   like the tooth fairy doling out a few quarters under our pillows while hundreds of thousands of people continue to foreclose on their homes.

Do you honestly believe that one bill was the only item that came up in Congress with regard to the economy in the last severla months lindajean?  You aren’t having an honest discussing anymore.  You are just cherry picking items and trying to pass them off as primary characteristics of larger entities or actions.  I said Congress wasn’t perfect by any stretch, but again…for you to assert they have done nothing if pure ignorance on your part.

I never said that he would.

You clearly tried to imply he would when you said he wouldn’t do push for more progressive policies in the future on the basis of a calcualted press conference response given to the press.  You don’t get to offer up that sort of thing as support for your assumptions and then backpedal away from it like you are doing here.

Coy to point of not answering a question that in all seriousness needs to be considered and answered.

And?  I agree.  I also agree we should nationalize the banks for a small period.  It was coy of him.  But it would be stupid of him to announce that on natinoal television even if he was in the process of making nationalization his adminsitration’s top priority so you don’t get to cling to that answer as anything to support your claims.  If he answers that he is working on nationalizing the banks, he loses lots of ground on Wall St. for no reason whatsoever.  That’s not simply politics, it’s pure stupidity.

And you so far have given me no reason to not “dismiss the importance of his efforts” except to say that his efforts are necessary.

I wasn’t the only one saying that.  The need for stabilization comes from the arguments made by Krugman and many others last fall when we were inthe same situation as we saw in early 2009.

They do?  Here is Krugman back in October, 2008:

1) No one here disagrees with the views you quoted nor has anyone argued against them.

2) Where is that quote from?  It’s certainly not found on the link you gave me there.  Not that I doubt it is somewhere attributed to Krugman, but you must have mixed your links up.

You did say he should not be fired and he needs to stay on in some capacity (whatever that may be is ambiguous.) My argument is he should not be Sec of Treasury for the reasons I have in depth explained.  If BHO wants to give him some desk job in the administration that is irrelevant.  My point is he has too much power and is too close to Wall Street.

Firing him from Sec. of Treasury is a huge PR blunder that will have significant ramifications on the stock market.  There is no reason NOT to avoid that by simply making him a figurehead.  If he refuses to go along with that, then fine.  Fire him or rather, let him resign.  Nevertheless, the option is still there to avoid the problems without losing anything.And as such, it should be considered and not dismissed out of hand as you have done simply because you don’t wanna bother yourself with seeing other perspectives on this.

Sure, which is why most economist disagree with you!

Like who? Krugman doesn’t. Neither does Stiglitz.  Nor Roubini.

With more WSGs not being held accountable and no reform so far….

With a stable stock market that finally allows for the possibility of stalling the recession and letting businesses at least have the option of working towards growth again.  Again, your entire perspective is exclusively framed within the narrow confines of the what you want to see happen emotionally.  I wanna see these idiots in jail too.  But that has nothing at all to do with the fact that Geithner and Summers did great things to stabilize the markets, which is vital to helping us start recovering.

Well, I guess you’ll have t talk to my friend Paul about conflation:

The reforms he is talking about isn’t natinalization or regulatory efforts by the executive branch, it was the issue of new legislation to be handled by Congress.  It had nothing to do with the Treasury Secretary Paulson nor the yet-to-be announced Geithner pick.  These aren’t the same types of reform we’ve been discussing.  They are out of Obama and Geithner’s control entirely.  We arleady know there will be fallout on Wall St. from any significant Congressional legislation going forward.  The idea is to not make taht worse by following it up with poorly handled PR issues that would arise from firing Geithner.  The goal, again, is to limit these negative effects.  Not because we want to reqard Geithner or anyone on Wall St. etc…but because we HAVE to limit these effects.

Here is Krugman agreeing with me about the absolute necessity for the bailout on the grounds that the rest of the economy could well fall apart if we don’t stabilize the stock markets:

“I’m being asked two big questions about this thing: (1) Was it really necessary? (2) Shouldn’t Dems have tossed the whole Paulson approach out the window and done something completely different?

On (1), the answer is yes. It’s true that some parts of the real economy are doing OK even in the face of financial disruption; big companies can still sell bonds (and have lots of cash on hand), qualifying home buyers can still get Fannie-Freddie mortgages, and so on. But commercial paper, which is important to a lot of businesses, is in trouble, and I’m hearing anecdotes about reduced credit lines causing smaller businesses to pull back.”

...in other words, he is saying we have to stabiliz

[ Edited: 20 May 2009 11:45 AM by tavishhill2003]
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Posted: 20 May 2009 04:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]  
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TH

They were agreeing that we need to stabilize things FIRST, just as I’ve argued here.  THEN we need the new policies.

And that is where you need to provide quotes because Krugman was not saying first one (stablization) and then the other (reform).  He was saying it needs to be done “sooner rather than later.”

How much more explicit does the man have to be?
That was about 9 months ago and I will post the reference one more time:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/28/opinion/28krugman.html


TH
So you find nothing wrong with taking the economists’ argumetns out of the dsicussion’s proper context, using them as an appeal to authority (fallacy), and then “forgetting” the very arguments these authority figures were making AGAINST your claims within the proper context of the discussion we’ve been having in this thread?  You find that to be honest discussion?  Come on now…

I have taken nothing out of context.  I am using them as a frame of reference to counter your argument when you state they all supported stabilzation before reform.  They did not and I provided you a quote (twice now) of one such example.

TH
I feel like it isn’t worth digging up quotes when you and I are both accutely aware of the arguments these ppl were making last fall.

This is an excuse for not offering something concrete to back up your words.


TH
If you require quotes, I’ll find you entire interviews if you ask.

I’ve been asking for how many weeks now. At least 2 or three.  Would you like me to provide quotes of me asking and dates?

TH
Do you really not remember all the times Krugman went on Olbermann et al to talk about how we needed to bail out the banks because letting them flounder in the type of super volatile markets we had at that time would destroy the rest of our natinoal economy?  You hoenstly don’t remember the entire reason why ppl supported the bailout and the basic arguments they were making?

I have never said that Krugman did not support bailing out banks.  I am arguing that he has never said we need to wait indefinite periods (6-9 months) to let things “stablize” and I have proven evidence on this thread indicating his exact words. And I have said that Krugman does not support Giethner’s plan for the taxpayers to subsidize hyped-up below market toxic assets.  That is what I have said.

TH

Again, if you demand quotes, I’ll find the Olbermann interviews etc, etc, etc but I find it rather convenient for you to suddenly forget those arguments were being made last fall or the context with which they were being made (which is the exact context I am speaking from when I say we HAD to stabilize the markets before ANY mreaingful policy changes could be announced).

I have not heard these arguments adn I watch Olbermann frequently.  It is your responsibility to provide them sense you are making the claim that they exist.

TH

I wanna get you on the record saying you somehow forget about these basic elements of the bailout debate before giving you the interviews and pointing out what ought to be obvious to you.  It is certainly bizarre that you make one post earlier pointing out what these economists were arguing last fall about the need for the bailout and the effects it’d have on our economy without one (i.e. the idea that these banks were/are too big to fail)...only to go on to play the blissful ignorance card when I note that these arguments were being made last fall by these exact same ppl.  Very selective memory you must have.

There is nothing for me to put on the record about me forgetting anything—Again, I have not argued they did not support an initial bailout.  That is NOT the same as supporting Geithgner’s plan which is what this thread is about.  Geithner was not even in charge of Treasury when the bailout first came about.  You are confusing two different issues and two different periods of time.

TH
Yes he did.  But to that he has to stabilize the economic markets first and foremost.

Again, your opinion.

TH
The fact that you don’t control him simply beause you voted for him.

That is a false statement. I have never made any claim that because I voted for him I therefore can control what he does. (JFC that is very bizarre!)

TH

I don’t find it at all unreasonable to hold off calling for firings until after the fiscal returns come in in a couple months.

I know you don’t find it unreasonable. Do you think I haven’t quite grasped that fact yet?

LJ
Please provide the “reasonable and intelligible perspectives” so that I can read them and we can discuss them! It is difficult to dismiss something that I have not had a chance to read and think about.

TH
I’ve been doing that ALL this thread!

You have been providing me with your opinion.
If you are referring to yourself as the “reasonable and intelligent perspective” I was thinking more in line of people who actually have studied and have knowledge of this topic.  You know, like all the people we have mentioned in this thread who have voiced their perspectives on it. Again. I wanted to “read over them” as I stated above so we could actually have something to base out discussion on (and not just you espousing your opinion.)

TH

Specifically speaking of the prospect of firing the two guys you wanna see fired or not, I noted that you can get the benefits of them being gone without any of the costs if Obama is clever about it AND on top of that you can even gain something by keeping them on as well politically and potentially some PR boost on Wall St., which is very important to how ppl view the markets.

Yes, I’ve hear this over and over again.

TH
Here, I’ll break it down for you:

(Ok, this sounds promising…)

TH

...if they are fired:

Pros:
-opens the door for more progressive economic policy

Cons:
-bad PR move for the administration politically
-REALLY bad PR move from the Wall St. perspective with guaranteed negative reaction in the markets immediately thereafter


...if Obama keeps them on board BUT also pulls in others to shape more progressive policies with or without these men’s help:

Pros:
-opens the door for more progressive economic policy
-these two men can still be used as PR figureheads to be ambassadors to Wall St. to help smooth the new legislation over
-avoids the bad PR from the other option

Cons:
-a handful of ppl on the left are annoyed

Brilliant!
So is there a different or new point here to consider?

TH

I see this as being pretty straight forward.  You don’t necessarily gain anything from firing them unless you assume option #2 is impossible.  But it isn’t impossible as Obama has reached out to ppl like Krugman et al recently to get their ideas as far as what should be the next policy move etc.  Now, you can’t really do my alternative in a half-assed way.  You need to truly get more progessive policies in place for the longer term.  But if we can get more progressive folks in there, that can certainly happen.  I don’t see what is lost doing it my way other than hurting your feelings.

Again, we have heard all of this before—-nothing new here to discuss.

TH

This is the argument of mine you simply dismiss out of hand and simply assert that they have to go without an actual argument to support it.  I share your concerns and am aware of their proximity to Wall St.  But good policy is written by the dispassionate and our feeligns shouldn’t get in the way of an objectively smarter solution that covers a variety of angles.

“Smarter” in this reference is subjective.

TH

But…that statement is based entirely on the assumption that there is no gray area in his job description which historically isn’t true.  The choice isn’t between keeping as the decision maker in the administration’s economic agenda versus firing him.  There is another choice which you’ve ignored, despite my efforts to note it for you.  Obama can avoid the PR issues firing these men will cause by not firing them AND also pull in other thinkers to help craft and implement more progressive policies.  And if those two guys don’t wanna get on board, fine.  They can sit on the sidelines and be mere figureheads or they can resign.  You keep pretending that this option isn’t available.  That was what I was pointing out.

What I have said is as long as he (Geithner)  stays (in his position) there will be no reform and people like Krugman say reform should be asap (that was back in Nov of 28) so the asap is already out of the question. The longer we wait the harder it will be for BHO to do it.

TH

I’m saying it is easy for you to simply say they should be fired…but you aren’t offering a counter argument to mine on that front.


Then you have not been reading my posts. I’m not going to waste (anymore of my) time repeating it.

TH
To recap..

No need to do that. We’re clear on what your argument is.

TH
I don’t understand.  You keep asking the question over and over as if I’ve been dodging it somehow.


I’m just curious to see how long you are willing to wait for reform to begin.

TH

  Yet from the get go I’ve given you nothing but direct answers that you really cannot argue are unreasonable.

You’ve offered a good argument, but I don’t agree with it so that is a difference we should come to accept.

TH
You simply have this ignorant attitude that because I’m don’t agree with the naive viewpoint that Obama should fire them without even thinking about it therefore I’m kissing the administration’s ass.  Do you have any arguments to propell the discussion lindajean or are you just gonna sit there and make assertions and thinly veiled accusations?

I’ve given you my position. Take it or leave it.

TH
You don’t need to wait for my answer, you can have it now.  They need to get the ball rolling with some momentum before September.  If they aren’t making some reasonable progress by then vis a vis shaping and implementing new progressive policies, then they are making a mistake in my honest opinion (assuming the markets don’t collapse again, which I think is a pretty safe bet over the next couple months).  Can the bullshit already.  My answer is there in writing.  And if they don’t make progress by then, then that’ll disappoint me.


I accept that last paragraph. Our main difference is that you see September as the goal line and I think we’ve already waited too long. Like I said, I would like to see where you are in September to see if you still have the same answer or if you will push that goal line back again. Time will tell.

[ Edited: 20 May 2009 04:35 PM by zelzo]
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Posted: 21 May 2009 05:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]  
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TH

What you say here is a completely different premise than what you assigned to me earlier.  You said earlier that my argument that they shouldn’t be fired revolved around the need for stabilization.  That’s not true.  My arguments for why to keep them on has absolutely nothing to do with stabilization.  My argument for why they have done a good job thus far for the overall economy is because we needed that stabilization.  But those are two completely independent and autonomous arguments I was making.  And ones I’ve gone to great lengths to make sure you don’t conflate and/or misunderstand…which you did anyhow.  :/

To paraphrase you: They have done a good job in stabilizing the economy but that is not the reason we should keep them on.  We need to keep them on because not to do so would be among other reasons, mostly a PR nightmare and would cause more instability in the market and we need their “expertise” and their rapport with Wall Street to keep this sinking boat afloat.

Got it!

But the reality is (in what you are saying) is we need to keep them on because they are the catalyst for stabilizing the economy and Geithner has “pull” within the WS community (which is actually a euphemism for a conflict of interest and is in bed with them.)  You might not want to make a declarative statement saying this, but that is really what you are saying.

TH
Again…no.  He doesn’t need to stay on to stabilize markets he has already stabilized.  He OUGHT to stay on because it makes sense logically.  You gain nothing but bad PR and a few bad days on Wall St. by firing him.  You can avoid that AND find some small benefits in keeping him on while also pulling in other ppl to work with Obama on reform.

Ditto from above.

TH
Oh for fuck’s sake lindajean…READ my posts!  It most certainly HAS been established quite clearly already.  I’ll do it again.  When you announce the necessary reforms, it’ll have strong negative impacts on the markets for a short while.  If the administration can have these guys help pave over some of those tensions on Wall St. and push the new regulation policies to their buddies on Wall St., that’s a good thing as it will limit the fallout of such an announcement.  Will the world end without this buffer?  No.  But if we can avoid a few hundred points off the markets for over the course of a few days or a week then we should…especially when the only “cost” is changing these guys’ control internally and avoidance of the bad PR associated with firing them.

and

TH

You’re acting like an idiot lindajean.  Seriously, yer smarter than this.  It’s not complicated.  This has nothing to do with praying to the Wall St. gods.  You continue to push this narrative that I, someone who has no stock portfolio to speak of, am magically beholden to them somehow and it is complete fantasy on your part.  The markets aren’t simply made of Wall St. banks.  Stop being so damn naive.  They reflect the tangled web of funding that goes out to pay for our national economy from top to bottom.  You’re efforts to declare war on Wall St. is as ill informed as someone trying to declare war on the muslim world for 9/11.  You’ve imagined a boogie man where anything that can have up sides for them is by definition automatically disastrous for everyone else.  The real world is far more nuanced than that, and you know it, so give that schtick up already.

It’s not a boogey man—more of a straw man that Wall Street (again) needs to be appeased to. There is really no reason that BHO needs to bow down to these guy and offer them his Wall Street diplomats.  If he treated WS the way he treats the car industries we wouldn’t be having this conversation He has the big boys in the car industry say “yes” to increase gas milage in cars——something they have been fighting Congress for years.  He is calling the shots with the car guys, but with Wall Street we must “ help pave over some of those tensions” before anything can get accomplished. 

TH
What happens on Wall St. reflects what happens to the millions of businesses strung up in the bankers’ web.  You really need stop trying to attack Wall St. purely for the sake of attacking it.  You’re pissing on a mit of the new regulations.  Not because we like having Geithner around, but because it makes sense logically and we ought not put vengeance against emotionally fabricated boogie men above reality.

Sounds like a hostage situation in the makes.

TH
If we can find a way to keep him on while also bringing in others to craft reform policies, then we get the best of both worlds and avoid the fallout of firing him.  The only argument you’ve offered thus far as to why he should be fired in light of this alternative is basically that you don’t like him and wanna see him fired.  That’s a pretty damn weak argument…and one that you refuse to back up with actual logic to this point.

 


There will be no qualitative reform if Geithner is around to cozy up to WS.  You can call it paving over some tension but I call it appeasement and passivity.

TH

I don’t form my arguments by appealing to authority like you do lindajean.  Economists aren’t in the business of forging political strategy.  The “field” that you speak of is that of political strategizing, not economics.  You have…again…conflated my two seperate arguments and attacked one based on your misunderstandings of the other.  My argument for keeping these guys on is basic logic.  You gain nothing from nixing them that you don’t also get from doing what I aruged for.

Economics is the closest thing we have to a science in understanding how the markets work which are very complex.  There are people who study these markets in great detail and scrutinize the parameters and dynamics of them and the historical significance as well.  They study this on a global and regional level and use all kinds of models to analyze variations and instabilities in the market.  No, it is not an exact science, but they do have a degree of expertise (which you do not have unless you have studied this as throughly as they have) and so saying I am appealing to authority as a weak form of argument is like saying appealing to TH’s argument is a strength.

TH
Furthermore, you also avoid the problems that come from simply firing them and get some other small benefits to boot.  If you wanna dispute that, be my guest.  But here you are just asserting that I’ve offered nothing in support of the diea that these two men ought to stay on when all you need to do is read my posts spelling out the rather blatently obvious logic to see the reasons it makes sense.

I don’t equate a “logical” argument with one that is definitely a correct one.

I know a lot of “logical” people who lack complete commonsense and make really bad decisions.

LJ
Yes like not voting for bankruptcy changes so people who are losing their homes could have a better chance to keep them. Congress is   like the tooth fairy doling out a few quarters under our pillows while hundreds of thousands of people continue to foreclose on their homes.

TH
Do you honestly believe that one bill was the only item that came up in Congress with regard to the economy in the last severla months lindajean?  You aren’t having an honest discussing anymore.  You are just cherry picking items and trying to pass them off as primary characteristics of larger entities or actions.  I said Congress wasn’t perfect by any stretch, but again…for you to assert they have done nothing if pure ignorance on your part.

I used it as an example to reinforce my point that major changes concerning the economy are not happening.  The passing of that bill would have been what I would call a major change or reform.

Give me one example of “reform” that has been implemented concerning the economy that does not buy into giving more money to Wall Street. Maybe your definition of “reform” is different than mine.

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Posted: 21 May 2009 05:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]  
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TH (from previously)

Do you honestly believe that one bill was the only item that came up in Congress with regard to the economy in the last severla months lindajean?  You aren’t having an honest discussing anymore.  You are just cherry picking items and trying to pass them off as primary characteristics of larger entities or actions.  I said Congress wasn’t perfect by any stretch, but again…for you to assert they have done nothing if pure ignorance on your part.

Again,give me an example of a bil that was passed that actually deals with reform.

TH—from previously

  Voting for a president doesn’t mean he/she is required to do your bidding.

LJ
I never said that he would.

TH

You clearly tried to imply he would when you said he wouldn’t do push for more progressive policies in the future on the basis of a calcualted press conference response given to the press.  You don’t get to offer up that sort of thing as support for your assumptions and then backpedal away from it like you are doing here.

I implied nothing of the sort. He is talking to the American Public when he does press conferences.  I take him at his word since that is what he asks of me to do by virtue of voting for him.  I don’t expect him to do my personal bidding (that is really an insult to him and you are way out of line to propose it.)  I expect him to move forward on reforms that he said he would do.  IOW I am going to hold him accountable to what he said during his campaign and there is no way in hell that is the same as “expecting him to do my bidding.”

TH

And?  I agree.  I also agree we should nationalize the banks for a small period.  It was coy of him.  But it would be stupid of him to announce that on natinoal television even if he was in the process of making nationalization his adminsitration’s top priority so you don’t get to cling to that answer as anything to support your claims.  If he answers that he is working on nationalizing the banks, he loses lots of ground on Wall St. for no reason whatsoever.  That’s not simply politics, it’s pure stupidity.

Nationalizing the banks is NOT his plan. He has stated it clearly to the press. SO let’s not pretend that he has something on the back burner that will move us in that direction.  This has nothing to do with stupidity, and everything to do with politics.

TH
I wasn’t the only one saying that.  The need for stabilization comes from the arguments made by Krugman and many others last fall when we were inthe same situation as we saw in early 2009.


And to date you have offered no references, Zip, none, nada.

TH

1) No one here disagrees with the views you quoted nor has anyone argued against them.


2) Where is that quote from?  It’s certainly not found on the link you gave me there.  Not that I doubt it is somewhere attributed to Krugman, but you must have mixed your links up.

The link was an error.  Here is the correct link:

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/09/21/thinking-the-bailout-through/?scp=1&sq=Thinking through the bailout krugman&st=cse


  LJ
Sure, which is why most economist disagree with you!

TH

Like who? Krugman doesn’t. Neither does Stiglitz.  Nor Roubini.

I’m waiting for those quotes and links…..........

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Posted: 21 May 2009 06:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]  
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TH

With a stable stock market that finally allows for the possibility of stalling the recession and letting businesses at least have the option of working towards growth again.  Again, your entire perspective is exclusively framed within the narrow confines of the what you want to see happen emotionally.  I wanna see these idiots in jail too.  But that has nothing at all to do with the fact that Geithner and Summers did great things to stabilize the markets, which is vital to helping us start recovering.

Although as you keep saying stabilizing the economy is not the reason for keeping them…...(is there something circular going on here?)

TH— previously
THAT is why we can realistically see a discussion between different economists about forward looking policy agendas.  We wouldn’t be seeing ANY of those discussions if the markets were still that volatile.  They wouldn’t support your argument that we can get away with such progressive policies in those conditions.  We know this because they were in those shoes last fall and they didn’t agree with your argument.  They agreed with mine.  Stop trying to conflate the context of my arguments please.

 

 

LJ
Well, I guess you’ll have t talk to my friend Paul about conflation:

From Krugman’s article quoted previously:

And the story of how “we” failed to see this coming has a clear policy implication — namely, that financial market reform should be pressed quickly, that it shouldn’t wait until the crisis is resolved.

 

 

TH
The reforms he is talking about isn’t natinalization or regulatory efforts by the executive branch, it was the issue of new legislation to be handled by Congress.  It had nothing to do with the Treasury Secretary Paulson nor the yet-to-be announced Geithner pick.  These aren’t the same types of reform we’ve been discussing.  They are out of Obama and Geithner’s control entirely.  We arleady know there will be fallout on Wall St. from any significant Congressional legislation going forward.  The idea is to not make taht worse by following it up with poorly handled PR issues that would arise from firing Geithner.  The goal, again, is to limit these negative effects.  Not because we want to reqard Geithner or anyone on Wall St. etc…but because we HAVE to limit these effects.

Huh?  He is talking about “policy implication”—-do you know what that is????

I am not debating here whether the executive vs the legislative branch is going to nationalize the banks. It’s not going to happen either way because BHO will veto anything that Congress could possibly muster through to nationalize.  That is NOT the issue I am debating here.  I am debating with you whether Krugman (for example) thinks we have to stabilize the markets before we begin economic reforms. He does not and I have quoted several links to prove it. So again, I am not arguing anything about executive vs. congressional regulation and neither is HE.  He is talking about the lack of regulation in the first place and how no one likes a party pooper (a spoiler who will call a spade a spade about the financial debacle we eventually found ourselves in last fall. )  He is talking about major reform and the necessity of doing it quickly, which is exactly what I have been arguing all along and have said Geithner will put a plug in.

Krugman:

One answer to these questions is that nobody likes a party pooper. While the housing bubble was still inflating, lenders were making lots of money issuing mortgages to anyone who walked in the door; investment banks were making even more money repackaging those mortgages into shiny new securities; and money managers who booked big paper profits by buying those securities with borrowed funds looked like geniuses, and were paid accordingly. Who wanted to hear from dismal economists warning that the whole thing was, in effect, a giant Ponzi scheme?

 

Now we’re in the midst of another crisis, the worst since the 1930s. For the moment, all eyes are on the immediate response to that crisis. Will the Fed’s ever more aggressive efforts to unfreeze the credit markets finally start getting somewhere? Will the Obama administration’s fiscal stimulus turn output and employment around? (I’m still not sure, by the way, whether the economic team is thinking big enough.)

And because we’re all so worried about the current crisis, it’s hard to focus on the longer-term issues — on reining in our out-of-control financial system, so as to prevent or at least limit the next crisis. Yet the experience of the last decade suggests that we should be worrying about financial reform, above all regulating the “shadow banking system” at the heart of the current mess, sooner rather than later.

For once the economy is on the road to recovery, the wheeler-dealers will be making easy money again — and will lobby hard against anyone who tries to limit their bottom lines. Moreover, the success of recovery efforts will come to seem preordained, even though it wasn’t, and the urgency of action will be lost.

So here’s my plea: even though the incoming administration’s agenda is already very full, it should not put off financial reform. The time to start preventing the next crisis is now.

Did you get that, TH:  NOW and that was written in Nov of 2008! So you can try all you want and divert and rephrase and infer all you want about what kind of “reform” he is talking about but the man is talking about reform with a capital R. He is not talking about a “different” kind of reform than what we are discussing.  (What exactly would that different reform be?)  He is talking about calling the kettle black and exposing WS for what it is: An-out-of-control-free-for-all orgy of magnitudes unseen before in the history of our economy. That may not include only nationalizing but it includes a get-tough in-your-face deregulation and restructuring of WS and you know damn well that is what we are talking about!!!!!!!!

TH
Here is Krugman agreeing with me about the absolute necessity for the bailout on the grounds that the rest of the economy could well fall apart if we don’t stabilize the stock markets:

Krugman
“I’m being asked two big questions about this thing: (1) Was it really necessary? (2) Shouldn’t Dems have tossed the whole Paulson approach out the window and done something completely different?

On (1), the answer is yes. It’s true that some parts of the real economy are doing OK even in the face of financial disruption; big companies can still sell bonds (and have lots of cash on hand), qualifying home buyers can still get Fannie-Freddie mortgages, and so on. But commercial paper, which is important to a lot of businesses, is in trouble, and I’m hearing anecdotes about reduced credit lines causing smaller businesses to pull back.”

 

TH
...in other words, he is saying we have to stabiliz

He is not saying any such thing.  He doesn’t even use the word stabilize and from the context I am reading here he is simply describing the state of the market.  And he is talking about Paulson here, not Geithner so I really have no context about what his message is in the article.  I need to read the whole article—and you need to provide me a link—it is absolutely required of you to make this an honest conversation.

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Posted: 26 May 2009 12:28 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]  
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I agree with lindajean

 


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[ Edited: 26 May 2009 12:31 AM by ddddyyyyy]
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