He who places his hope on thee, O Virgin all-glorious, will prosper in all he does.

Inscription on Byzantine coin during reign of Romanus III

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Bulldoze It!

I have an admiration for the directness with which the Russians deal with particular issues.

Thanks to Cyril of Energetic Procession here.


Big surprise. S&P's President is stepping down.

Over at
John's blog a few weeks ago, I commented on the prospect of Moody's downgrading the creditworthiness of US Treasuries:

It'd behoove Moody's to make contingency plans to evacuate to an alternative foreign situs if it were to prematurely downgrade US Treasuries. That's hardball territory.

Now that S&P has crossed that Rubicon, I'd be surprised if its credit ratings' franchise remains intact. The Justice Department has reinvigorated its investigation of S&P's ratings of mortgage bonds.

You know what this means? The Administration can't fault S&P on the merits of its rating of Treasuries, despite the bluster about the US's still being a "triple A country", and will turn over rocks to indict it on the merits of some moron employee's careless remark about mortgage bonds.

In my view, S&P showed remarkable courage in focusing our attention on the seriousness of the debt issue. There's a small window of time (approximately three years) during which Washington can actually do something to keep the debt from spinning out of control.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Will Someone Muzzle This Blowhard?

The rich have already made their stash, and, accordingly, can structure their income to manage their tax liability. The almost-rich, on the other hand, are trying to become rich, and pay tax on their accretions of wealth.

Buffett is simply guarding the interests of his social class in calling for increased taxation, which will disproportionately fall on the upwardly mobile arrivistes. Everything about this blowhard reeks of self-absorption.

Interesting Piece On Why Banks Aren't Lending

GDP is slow, and unemployment is high. Small business, the engine of growth in previous recoveries, faces hurdles, especially in accessing credit.