"It is easy to confuse what is with what ought to be, especially when what is has worked out in your favor."
- Tyrion Lannister
"Lannister. Baratheon. Stark. Tyrell. They're all just spokes on a wheel. This one's on top, then that's ones on top and on and on it spins, crushing those on the ground. I'm not going to stop the wheel. I'm going to break the wheel."
- Daenerys Targaryen
"The Lord of Light wants his enemies burned. The Drowned God wants them drowned. Why are all the gods such vicious cunts? Where's the God of Tits and Wine?"
- Tyrion Lannister
"The common people pray for rain, healthy children, and a summer that never ends. It is no matter to them if the high lords play their game of thrones, so long as they are left in peace. They never are."
- Jorah Mormont
"These bad people are what I'm good at. Out talking them. Out thinking them."
- Tyrion Lannister
"What happened? I think fundamentals were trumped by mechanics and, to a lesser extent, by demographics."
- Michael Barone
"If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to."
- Dorothy Parker
Saturday, April 06, 2013
Friday, April 05, 2013
The bad news is that sin sells. Although the Mellonites have, as I said, been wrong about everything, the notion of macroeconomics as morality play has a visceral appeal that’s hard to fight. Disguise it with a bit of political cross-dressing, and even liberals can fall for it.
Thursday, April 04, 2013
With Ben Bernanke’s term as chairman of the Federal Reserve up at the end of January, 2014, the speculation about the identity of his successor is starting in earnest. Two recent articles in The Economist and at the Washington Post’s Wonkblog have both made Janet Yellen, who is currently Bernanke’s number two on the Fed’s board of governors, the firm favorite for the job. Slate’s Matt Yglesias reckons her accession isn’t even in doubt, saying bluntly, “it’ll be Janet Yellen.”(via Thoma)
In a statement detailing the new measures, the central bank said it would buy longer-term government bonds, lengthening the average maturity of its holdings to seven years from three years and expanding Japan’s monetary base to ¥270 trillion by March 2015. Under that plan, the bank will buy ¥7 trillion of bonds each month, equivalent to over 1 percent of its gross domestic product — almost twice the pace of the U.S. Federal Reserve.
My guess is that next time there won't be bailouts. The Democrats who voted for TARP were bait-and-switched over mortgage loan forgiveness. Geithner again, and Summers. Probably reacting to the original Teabagger Rick Santelli's rant.
Wednesday, April 03, 2013
Tuesday, April 02, 2013
Actually, I was disappointed in Stockman’s piece. I thought there would be some kind of real argument, some presentation, however tendentious, of evidence. Instead it’s just a series of gee-whiz, context- and model-free numbers embedded in a rant — and not even an interesting rant. It’s cranky old man stuff, the kind of thing you get from people who read Investors Business Daily, listen to Rush Limbaugh, and maybe, if they’re unusually teched up, get investment advice from Zero Hedge.
AV Club reviews "Valar Dohaeris" (for experts) from Game of Thrones
AV Club reviews "Valar Dohaeris" (for newbies) from Game of Thrones
AV Club reviews "Welcome to the Tombs" from The Walking Dead
Print Money. Mail Everybody a Check: Fight unemployment by giving money directly to American families. by Yglesias
Now, this is almost an accounting identity, so by itself the figure doesn’t tell you which side is driving the action. But we know the answer to that question from other evidence. For one thing, we know that most of that surge in the private sector surplus reflects the collapse of the housing bubble, and that most of the surge in the public deficit reflected automatic stabilizers. For another, we know that if government deficits were crowding out private spending, we should have seen rising interest rates; what we actually saw was falling rates.
So there isn’t any puzzle here, except the puzzle of people who are puzzled. I really don’t understand how Marty Feldstein can look at these facts and conclude that the only way to explain low interest rates is to imagine that the Fed is imposing massive market distortions.