Thursday, September 18, 2008

Weekend Open Thread

Some discussion starters:

* Joining the legendary list of countries such as Pakistan, China and more recently the UK, the US bans short selling of all financial stocks. Way to go. Free markets at work.
* Theories of financial terrorism are floating around to legitimize the case for banning short selling. Big Picture guy has a discussion on this. Of course, we know that patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel and it's very likely that quite a lot of people will actually buy this. Mission accomplished.
* As a further add on to the Credit Union guarantees of Alberta, the key point to remember is that the guarantee is all backed by the Government of Alberta, perhaps the most solvent government in the western world (after Norway and Alaska perhaps?). So let's say ATB goes under then Alberta Government will step in and make up for the losses of around $22 billion in deposits(Annual Report pdf). And that should be relatively easier to fix than for Canadian government to try and make up for the loss of over $250 billion dollars in deposit for a typical Big 5 Canadian bank.
* [rant on]The cardinal rule of the game is- don't fight the bankers. It's not don't fight the fed, it's not don't fight the government but don't fight the bankers. Bankers will typically get whatever they want by flexing their muscle and exercising their clout over the who's who of the world.Will this mean there won't be any recession? Will this mean there won't be any major spike in unemployment? The certain thing is that the bankers will be bailed out no matter what the consequences. There's no leadership left anywhere in the world to stand up and protect the interest of the little guy. Not even pretensions. [/rant off]
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