Tuesday, 24 March 2009

BusinessWeek Article -- on Wall Street's Crimes Against Humanity! (Jesus!)

Click here on this link to read this peculiar article about Wall Street and its bankers' crimes. Columnist Shoshana Zuboff writes that, by refusing to consider the consequences of their actions, those who created the financial crisis exemplify the banality of evil.

I wonder why some people don't write about this during times of boom -- or why the media just don't publish articles like this. Must be that, during times of prosperity, every country in the world wants to have their little own Wall Street ...


  1. Mr Guillermo Parra-Bernal :

    Thanks for your posts that teach us a lot !

    I post here my naive economic ideas, expecting perhaps to be corrected one day, with an article or note.

    If there is a depression in the housing market and the values of houses are falling then entering more people to buy homes is a good idea.

    I am not considering social issures, just common sense, and a little mathematical thinking.

    I have always believed that expulsing people from a country or area because of bias is poor business.

    That happened to Spain after 1492 with Jews and Moors. It slowly ruined Spain.

    It happened with Russia and her Progroms to dislodge and disposses the Jews.

    And the killing of Jews in Germany and Eastern Europe should have caused an economic impact.

    Someone in the New York Times wrote that Immigrants, even if ignorant of English, were very good workers highly motivated and competitive against natives.

    So, if you expulse those that are ready for very hard work, then salaries will go up, but motivation to do hard work will go down. Is that good for an Economy ??

    Expulsion of People - Is that good for Supermarkets ???


    Vicente Duque

  2. Gad, you're so right. But its so hard to know what's up. Groups like Bloomberg wrote for years that the tech bubble was a bubble until it went on so long that they couldn't ignore that people were making millions. Then of course things crashed. In the early 2000, Brazil and Latin America were sure to crash, Lula was sure to default, and NOT get elected, but he did get elected and he didn't default and guys like Mohammed El Erian who bet on the region made out like bandits, if bandits is the right word for someone who believed in people, governments and, a whole region, when so many ``smart'' people didn't.

    Now we face the other side of prejudice. Folks like Lula are blaming the white, blond, blue-eyed devils for all their problems. Gringos may (and probably did) screw up on regulation, interest rates, theory, etc. but it was the structures that helped transfer first-world wealth, via debt, to China and the Brics that was responsible for the growth in places like Brazil that is coming to an end. China, those wonderful anti-neo liberal state-directed folks with miracle growth, didn't buy very many manufactured or value added goods from Brazil. Americans either directly, or through subsidies such as auto companies or retail chains, or Brazilian subsidiaries, bought Brazil's steel slabs and rolled steel (as opposed to iron-ore), its fuel oil and bunker fuel, it's Embraer aircraft, its auto parts, invested in its auto industry, bought the small-cap stocks, shoes, towels, sheets, flip-flops, let companies such as Gerdau, buy up a huge part of the U.S. long-steel industry, record amounts of oil leases in the U.S. Gulf and refineries.

    Greenspan's post 9/11 low interest rates allowed Brazil to capitalize its banks with record profits from government bonds as huge funds such as Calpers (and Canada's Ontario Teachers' Fund) did the carry trade in hopes of meeting their pension obligations in the face of falling (and sometimes negative) U.S. rates.

    American homeowner debt financed chinese growth that fueled demand for Brazilian iron-ore, soybeans, chickens and beef (and alumina, gasoline etc.)

    Gabrielli, the CEO of Petrobras, the other day said that Eastern Europe is worse off than it was under communism (and before the Senate no less) this a guy who owes his job to world capital markets.

    Stupidity is afoot. We face deuling arrogances. Americans who don't or can't recognize the need to change and Latins who never wanted to change, and are using the current crisis to reverse changes that helped make them better off.

    Latin America did so much in the last decade, but has refused to understand that by doing what the Americans and Europeans suggested they are stronger and that the Americans, in particular, by not following their own advice, are weaker.

    Instead of applauding the change and success, people like Lula use the American failures to discredit their own successes.

    Gad people never learn.

    Miss you Mr. Memo. The Carioca Grouch is VERY Grouchy and hopes to talk to you soon.