Late Night: The Ghost of Ronnie

By: Thursday October 10, 2013 8:00 pm

It’s become commonplace in what remains of the mainstream media to say that the Republican Party has moved so far to the right that even St. Ronnie wouldn’t make the cut, which is true as far as it goes. But thanks to Reaganism, it doesn’t need Ronnie anymore.

 

Late Night: Special Olympics

By: Thursday April 11, 2013 8:00 pm

Each time the stage mothers of the Republican Party push another child star out into the footlights, we find, yet again, that the children of Lake GOP are quite uniformly, below average.  Although this goes back to Reagan; the idea of casting affable meat puppets for the role of “President” to cynically sell the evergreen policies of the plutocracy to the unsuspecting rabble, the talent pool has gotten pretty laughably shallow.  And not for nothing.

Late Night: Long Live the King

By: Thursday January 17, 2013 8:00 pm

“I’m afraid that President Obama may have this ‘king complex’ sort of developing, and we’re going to make sure it doesn’t happen.”

Thus spake Rand Paul, US Senator (!), somewhat before he knew what, exactly, Obama’s proposals would entail. But does that really matter? True believers like Paul are reliably armed with two of the three things they’ve ever half-read (not written by Ayn Rand), the Bible and the Constitution, and have come to some pretty novel conclusions about both works. Of course, such conclusions are completely nuts, but nonetheless at least as infallible as whatever comes out of the Pope’s ass on any given day, so there.

How to Slay Invisible Bond Vigilantes

By: Saturday November 24, 2012 9:00 am

Like little children scared about monsters under their beds, DC appears to be in thrall to fears of Invisible Bond Vigilantes. Krugman has been trying to slay these fears with logic and rational argument, but as any parent can tell you, fears like these are irrational and succumb to only one thing: mockery.

As the pressure for a Grand Bargain mounts and screaming about the Invisible Bond Vigilantes rises, let the mockery begin. It’s the only weapon that has a chance of success.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Anya Schiffrin, Bad News-How America’s Business Press Missed the Story of the Century

By: Sunday March 27, 2011 1:59 pm

Bad News is a collection of essays edited by our guest today, Anya Schiffrin. It features chapters by Ms. Schiffrin, as well as by Nobel Laureate Joe Stiglitz, Columbia Journalism Review’s Dean Starkman, HuffPo Business Editor Peter Goodman, and others in the field from both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

The book examines the financial press’s version of the Veal Pen, or what Stiglitz calls “cognitive capture.” Just like the political reporters inside the Beltway have become slaves to access, Financial and economic journalists are just as dependent on their sources in industry and government for information and feel the need to keep those sources happy to avoid being cut off from the information flow that is the lifeblood of their production model.

FDL Book Salon Welcomes Dean Baker, False Profits: Recovering from the Bubble Economy

By: Sunday February 21, 2010 2:00 pm

In Baker’s retelling, the Federal Reserve Board and the Treasury Department, specifically Alan Greenspan, Ben Bernanke and Henry Paulson (featured on the cover as the “false profits” of the title), allowed the housing bubble to grow unchecked, ignored and even encouraged the reckless mortgages that intensified risk, and were caught completely off-guard by the eventual meltdown. Stripped of their home equity wealth, consumers could not ring up the purchases that fed the national economy. Foreclosures and a glut of vacant housing on the market devastated the construction industry. The write-offs and toxic securities at the banks brought them to their knees. Baker says this was completely predictable:

Exuberant optimism vs. total bull****

By: Friday January 1, 2010 1:30 pm

Your auditors just told you that you don’t know how to value your own insurance contracts, Goldman Sachs and other trading partners are asking you to post more collateral –indicating that they disagree with how you have valued these contracts, the guy in charge of these products cannot come up with a way to explain them in layman’s terms, yet you have the chutzpah to tell your investors that your products are “carefully underwritten”? And probability of loss is zero? WTF? Where did you get that from?

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