Please Mr. Gummint man, don’t take away my bowl!

U.S. rescue efforts may risk double-dip recession

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. companies, consumers and communities may grow so addicted to government financial help that cutting them off could trigger another recession soon after the current one ends.

[Reuters]

Pending Home Sales Down 7%

The index is at the lowest level since tracking began in 2001.

[NAR]

Does Creeping Nationalization Make Reprivatization Harder?

A New York Times article tonight, “U.S. Likely to Keep the Reins on Fannie and Freddie”, raises the specter that the mortgage giants may never return to private form. Frankly, we think that is not entirely a bad thing. Fannie and Freddie were originally agencies of the US government and were (sort of) spun out in the late 1960s, when their borrowings on top of Vietnam war funding made the Federal balance sheet look ugly. And in typical plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose fashion, the reason the GSEs have not been fully taken over is to avoid consolidating their debt onto the Federal balance sheet.

[naked capitalism]

I Shit You Not

Bernie Madoff is accused of fleecing his clients out of billions, but he said Monday he shouldn’t be forced into the poorhouse.

His lawyers are arguing that Madoff should be entitled to keep the $7 million apartment he’s currently being held in while under house arrest and $62 million.

Court papers filed on Monday state that Madoff and his lawyer say the Manhattan penthouse and the millions held in accounts of Madoff’s wife, Ruth, are not subject to seizure.

Madoff’s lawyers claim “only Ruth Madoff has a beneficial ownership” to a Manhattan apartment, about $45 million in municipal bonds on deposit at Cohmad Securities Corp., and approximately $17 million in cash in another account, Stanton said. Ruth Madoff says these assets are “unrelated” to the alleged fraud, Stanton wrote, citing her husband’s lawyer. ”

[cbsnews] [BB]

Radioactive Toxic Waste: Works Just Like CDOs — For Real

Hot (radioactive) recycled metal from decommissioned nuclear power plants, among other places, is threatening to radioactively contaminate the entire world’s steel industry. The way he explained it to me, it’s just eerie how this unfolding story of risk and greed parallels the familiar dynamics of subprime [and its effect on CDO’s].

[Housing Doom]


Any resemblance that 2009 has to 1929 is purely intentional.

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