Deep, getting deeper

Ignoring the alarm bells:

Now, you might have thought that S&P and Moody’s, which gave Thailand an investment-grade rating until five months after the start of the Asian financial crisis, and gave Enron an investment-grade rating until days before it went bankrupt, would by now have learned to be a bit suspicious. And you would think that the regulators, in particular the Federal Reserve, would have learned from the stock bubble and the wave of corporate malfeasance that went with it to keep a watchful eye on overheated markets.

Crikey! Who’s minding the store?

The CDO issue gets addressed in a sober economist who urges us not to panic.


Some questions he doesn’t address are asked by The Big Picture– and of course if James Hamilton at Econbrowser wants to answer them I’m all ears.

Me, I’m hoping the skipper knows how to turn icebergs into snow cones.

Sharp Practice
For a close up look at what was happening on the ground, this fine account, reads like an anatomy of a Florida housing scam.

Never fails to amaze me that crooks don’t think very far ahead. Hey, maybe they don’t think they’re crooks. They’re “strictly legitimate” business people, trying to “profit.” And if everyone else is doing it, how can it be illegal?

Wonder: which “wealth serminars” did they attend?

Two months later, Ramis seemed near the breaking point. “I’m going to pray that all these houses get sold quick. … My nerves are so shot. … A day like today is overwhelming for me,” she wrote to Zayas in an e-mail provided by Owens.

Hey, who knew- crooks can be religious people too!

In the story, I thought referring to these hoodlums and their accomplices as a ‘cartel’ sounded too fancy. They are crooks, pure and simple. No wait: call them organized crime. No? how about gang-bangers?

I got it! They’re terrorists!

What a slut!
Apparently Tony Villar’s talking head homewrecker got aroundand around.


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