Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The new Old Wise Men sure look a lot like the old Old Wise Men who got us into this mess

David Brooks, the NY Times Op-Ed columnist, continues to practice the politics of disingenuousness as a he fantasizes a "new establishment" riding to the rescue of the financial system in the guise of the Paulson bailout. That would be in contrast to the non-establishment "math geeks" that got us into all this trouble with their complicated new fiancial instruments.
Year followed year, and the idea of a cohesive financial establishment seemed increasingly like a thing of the past.

No more. Over the past week, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and Tim Geithner of the New York Fed have nearly revived it. At its base, the turmoil wracking the world financial markets is a crisis of confidence. What Paulson, et al. have tried to do is reassert authority — the sort that used to be wielded by the Mellons and Rockefellers and other rich men in private clubs.
I wasn't the only one who did a double-take reading this "Wall Street was taken over by aliens, but they're gone now" rationalization for what's unfolding now. Glenn Greenwald has a nice dissection here.

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