Monday, March 30, 2009


"By now you know the problem with President Obama's media strategy. He's too somber. Also, he laughs too much. He needs to get out and communicate more. And he's doing too much TV. He's overly professorial. And too fluffy. He needs to be a calm, grown up voice. And he needs to share taxpayers' rage. But, you know—calm their rage too." —James Poniewozik in the latest TIME


JIm said...

Obama Bankruptcy and Autos

Bankruptcy is tough but sometimes necessary. Pres. Obama seems to be moving to the only logical conclusion. A prepackaged bankruptcy has a good possibility of working, since all interests are forced into making very difficults choices. It seems unseemly to have politicians replacing CEOs, but when companies accept public money all bets are off. In retrospect, it would have been better if the financials had been put through something similar along with some reworking of mark to market accounting to a market price that took into account of the cash flow of the underlying debt instruments. We live in amazing times. Viable capitalism could emerge on the other side, although it is unsettelling to see government yield increased power.

Butch in Waukegan said...

This headline speaks for itself:

Obama’s Tax Task Force Includes AIG Board Member

Krugman doesn't get the time of day while the bankers who rob us crowd around the table. Is this representing the wishes of those who elected him?

Anonymous said...

Lal--Butch is spot-on. Surrounded as he is by ex-GoldmanSachs hustlers,Obama less and less is "representing the wishes of those who elected him." We knew going in that he was a conventional politician, but we didn't expect him to be Good Shepherd to the lost sheep of the banking and financial
and military components of the military-industrial-communications-university complex.
Bob Berner

Curtis Faville said...

"University complex"?


LIke colleges and universities are getting bailed?

Give me a break!

Butch in Waukegan said...

This is what I’m talking about.

California's Yuba County tops in U.S. for 'underwater' mortgages

There's nowhere tougher in America to be paying a mortgage than Yuba County, says a new lending industry study released Monday.

Nearly 78 percent of the county's mortgage debt is tied to houses that have lost value and are worth less than what's owed on them, said New Jersey-based SMR Research in its yearly "Giants of the Mortgage Industry" study.

"That was the worst on the hit parade," said SMR President Stuart Feldstein.

The report said 60.3 percent of the county's 10,558 mortgage borrowers owed more in February than their homes were worth. The phenomenon is commonly called being "underwater" or "upside down."

The statistics mean most struggling Yuba County borrowers can't refinance out of their troubles. The majority are ineligible, too, for President Barack Obama's plan to help underwater owners, which is limited to homes whose value is no more than 5 percent below what's owed.

About one-third of U.S. mortgage debt is tied to "underwater" homes, he [Feldstein] said, while 22.4 percent of borrowers owe more than their home value.

AIG has a seat at the table. Why aren’t the people of Yuba, and the millions in the same fix, represented?

Perhaps part of the answer can be found here: