Crawl Across the Ocean

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Deja Vu

All of this has happened before
All of this will happen again...

Here's a quote that seems relevant to the current financial situation,

"Another way of defining moral hazard is that it is what results from the combination of privatized profit an socialized loss. In the words of Kenneth A. Guenther, executive vice president of the Independent Bankers Association of America, "The combination of interest rate deregulation with 100% deposit insurance is like the invention of gunpowder - sooner or later it was bound to explode" But deregulation of banking and finance was all the rage ... and the banking sector wanted "the government off its back." Nowadays the last thing it wants is for the government to leave the scene of the train wreck. Ironically, the degree of government involvement in the financial sector ... is proving much greater than before. ... Those deemed 'too big to be allowed to fail' are of course especially favoured, further encouraging bigness.


To analyze or even recount the recent and unfinished consequences of the financial deregulation disaster in the United States, or the international debt crisis, is far beyond our scope. We are sure that the consequences will eventually have to include a large dose of reregulation in the public interest."

That's Herman Daly and John Cobb from the 2nd edition of 'For the Common Good', published in 1994. I wouldn't be too optimistic about that reregulation bit, we're just going to go from crisis to crisis without anything changing if the last few decades are anything to go by...

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