Conversation on Russia TV on Wall Street Conduct, Lack of Reform Posted on October 13, 2010 by Yves Smith I enjoyed the interview on Russia TV, but boy, the lighting was harsh! 001000 Post navigation ← Josh Rosner: “Could Violations of PSA’s Dwarf Lehman Weekend?” Title Insurance Woes Illustrate Liabilities of Foreclosure Mess Concentrated in TBTF Banks → Subscribe to Post Comments 21 comments tawal October 13, 2010 at 3:14 am Nicely done! They should have had one of those Jump Fuckers banners in the background. Why is it that RT seems like it is the only one that brings reality to tv, er, maybe that’s what RT really denotes. (They did a nice job on the Toronto anti-globalism campaign last summer too.) Dactyl October 13, 2010 at 3:47 am Great Job Yves, Thanks Darby Shaw October 13, 2010 at 3:51 am Soooo….I was talking with a dear friend tonight and was doing a little explaining. She made a strong case that perhaps Obama was totally blindsided by this. Explains the stonewalling. Axelrod either got hung out to dry or is taking the hit knowingly, but one definatly gets the opinion he is buying time. Can you imagine if he was just made aware of this situation just this last week? Up would be down, down would be up, your up all night torn over 2 wars and a shit economy, and pain, and hunger, and suffering of people under your care. So this is it. If he is truly to be great, to even reach for greatness, this will be the measure by which history will judge him. He is no longer a democrat, a republican, left, right, pro anything and against nothing, he is the f**king President. And I may not like it, but he is my president. Our president. Crazy how life works! Who knew? Can you imagine the weight on this guy? So my lady friend says “yup…those bastards just hauled off and left an economic s**tbomb for Obama. Poor guy…keeping the black man down yet again.” I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. freepressmyass October 13, 2010 at 8:29 am With all due respect, you’re kiddin’ me, right? You think he has no idea what the banks are up to? Just knowing people are still buying Obama’s massive fraudulent display to conceal his true agenda, is very depressing. Banging head on wall. Darby Shaw October 13, 2010 at 4:14 am Look at the latest below. Are the banks scrambling? Look at the last paragraph “Bank of America, the largest servicer of residential mortgages, had offered to cover the title insurer’s costs from any errors made by bank employees processing foreclosures” They are essentially saying “we’ll just buy any company we need to corrupt!” I mean, does Dr. Evil run the friggin’ world? October 12, 2010 | 5:39 pm In the latest fallout from foreclosure processing problems, Bank of America announced late Tuesday that it had reached an agreement with Fidelity National Financial Inc. to provide title insurance on the sale of foreclosed properties. BofA spokesman Dan Frahm said that the bank and Fidelity National, the nation’s largest title insurer, hoped to reassure home buyers that they are protected when buying foreclosed properties. The bank said it is trying to work out similar agreements with the American Land Title Assn., the title insurance industry’s major trade group, and other title insurers. Kurt Pfotenhauer, chief executive of the land title group, said that his association had expressed concern to the big banks that its members could be left on the hook if they insured certain properties that had been bought out of foreclosure. He said he expected more agreements between big title insurers and banks to be reached this week. Frahm, the Bank of America spokesman, wouldn’t say what assurances the bank had provided Fidelity National to reach the accord. Fidelity spokesman Daniel K. Murphy could not be reached for comment. A news report from Jacksonville, Fla., where Fidelity National is based, said Charlotte, N.C.-based Bank of America, the largest servicer of residential mortgages, had offered to cover the title insurer’s costs from any errors made by bank employees processing foreclosures. — E. Scott Reckard and Alejandro Lazo http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/money_co/2010/10/bank-of-america-reaches-agreement-with-fidelity-national-over-insurance-of-foreclosed-homes.html Nicolae Tufar October 13, 2010 at 5:00 am Congrats Yves! But you should also be aware that these guys have an agenda. They argue that democracy, liberalism, and free market are flawed concepts and are to be superseded by Putin’s “controlled democracy” and state capitalism. You played into their hands. Yves Smith Post authorOctober 13, 2010 at 5:04 am I speak to pretty much any group on the ideological spectrum that will have me, from the Milken Conference to the dialectical materialists. DownSouth October 13, 2010 at 7:25 am Yea, right, as if we aren’t living state capitalism and “controlled democracy” in the United States as we speak. And to set the record straight, what Putin advocates is not state capitalism, but state socialism. Of course as Hannah Arendt has pointed out, there’s not a hair’s breadth difference between the two. DownSouth October 13, 2010 at 7:48 am Between Waco and Temple Texas is a large billboard that can be seen from the southbound lane. On it appears Obama’s picture, with the word “Socialist!” printed in large letters, blaring overhead. The sponsors of this billboard, just like you, get it wrong. Obama is no socialist, and Putin is no capitalist. But you did get the “state” part right. What Obama and Putin have in common is their advocacy of “controlled democracy.” Sid October 13, 2010 at 8:18 am Russian Today is one of the few normal news sources in English. To understand Russian and Putin, you have to look at what Russia was when V.V. Putin first stepped onto the national stage: the currency had literally collapsed to the point where home-brew vodka was the de facto currency in the countryside; rebels from Chechnya were literally invading Russian territory (Dagestan); and other large chunks of the country (e.g. Yauktia) had either declared independence or regional governors simply ignored or flouted laws from Moscow that they did not like. To top it all, oligarchs were publicly bragging that they owned the government. (Actually, it wasn’t so much “bragging” as a statement of fact, although the personalities behind those statement make the most coked-up Master of the Universe look humble and modest by comparison.) The writ of the Russian government had literally ceased to run in much of the country, and the government had only nominal control over the remainder. When B.N. Yeltsin nominated him as prime minister, Putin was seen as a non-entity with no power base, who therefore could be easily controlled even by the weak Yeltsin. Putin shocked everyone by his aggressiveness and energy. Soon Yeltsin had no choice to step down as step by step, V.V. Putin restored state power and broke the necks of the rebels and oligarchs. DownSouth October 13, 2010 at 12:16 pm I don’t at all disagree with your analysis. But sometimes (and I don’t know enough about current events in Russia to assert whether this is the case in Russia or not) the cure can be worse than the disease. Marxism is so formidable a political creed precisely because it expresses the convictions of those who have discovered the errors in the liberal-bourgeois creed in bitter experience. Marxism is so dangerous because in its consistent form it usually substitutes a more grievous error for the error which it challenges. In this debate between errors, or between half-truth and half-truth, America is usually completely on the side of the bourgeois credo in theory; but in practice it has achieved balances of power in the organization of social forces and a consequent justice which has robbed the Marxist challenge of its sting. –Reinhold Niebuhr, The Irony of American History Konstantin October 13, 2010 at 2:35 pm You forgot to include a major point, oil price dynamics during Putin’s years, into your analysis. Increasing from $10 to $140 per barrel. Given Russia was and is major oil exporter, all the good things under Putin (there was stability and stuff, yes) were mostly bought with oil money. Now oil is 80$, but Russia’s budget is in deficit despite. GDP slide during crisis was the worst in G20. Terrorists still reign in Caucasus… Now, what was that you’ere saying about Putin? jbmoore October 13, 2010 at 5:09 am Harsh lighting old, effective Russian interrogation technique, comrade. We make you talk. russell1200 October 13, 2010 at 5:23 am That was Sophie Shevardnadze? The grandaughter? I found their web site a little confusing. russell1200 October 13, 2010 at 5:25 am Whoops, it rolled over real quick, but its Anastasia Churkina. LeeAnne October 13, 2010 at 8:14 am Fabulous Yves. You look great and appropriately animated with a dignified intelligent interviewer and time to answer questions fully; a welcome change from the boobs on the boob tube here. It must be a relief to be interviewed by an intelligent professional dressed without the flowing barbie hair and related gestures and interruptions. F. Beard October 13, 2010 at 9:14 am Nice interview and yes the Russian babe was a treat especially compared to our (US) newscasters. Hey capitalists, let’s learn to do capitalism correctly: “The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is the people versus the banks.” Lord Acton from http://quotes.liberty-tree.ca/quote_blog/Acton.Quote.B723 Maju October 13, 2010 at 11:31 am I liked the interview and, admittedly was surprised to realize that Yves can be a woman’s name. I’ve been following your most interesting blog only for the last few months and I thought Ives Smith was a man – silly me – not that it matters, of course, just unexpected. :) You are absolutely right, sadly enough. It just cannot work this way: it’s a pathetic circus, a race of rob-while-you-can that has no sustainability whatsoever and you are right in denouncing it: someone must, so I really appreciate your sense of responsibility. As for those who criticize you for being interviewed by Russia Today, I must say that it makes a good job criticizing what does not work in the West, providing informative interviews with people that are often ignored this side of the former “iron curtain”. They probably do not do such good job in the domestic aspect but that’s not only Russian TV’s problem, right? I mean: the media in the West is today almost completely unbalanced also and totally failing in their supposed role as critics of the institutions, be them governments or companies and markets. Anon October 13, 2010 at 4:28 pm Adam Smith …Eve Smith … Yves Smith. If you eat from this tree of knowledge, you’ll soon discover that you’re *naked*, but don’t tell the emperor or the invisible hand will banish you from Eden. ballgame October 14, 2010 at 1:57 am Great interview, Yves. I have one criticism. Like many brilliant people, you tend to talk as fast as you think. I believe you will be much more persuasive among people who aren’t as smart as you (that is, the overwhelming majority) or who don’t understand the situation as well as you do (ditto), if you slow down. I realize the difficulties in trying to do this — you have a lot of very important and complicated things to explain in a limited amount of time, plus it will feel unnatural — but I think you will find your overall impact will be higher. thall October 19, 2010 at 6:09 pm for the record this is not capitalism. the US is NO longer a capitalist country. capitalism doesn’t reward failure, american “capitalism” does. capitalism is not about survival of the UNfittest. amrican “capitalism” is. capitalism means being responsible for your mistakes, and if your company goes under due to your bad business decisions, then you go under. whereas american “capitalism” will prop them up with taxpayer bailouts, ie. corruption. (and no it’s not socialism, it’s corruption) american “capitalism” is when the profits are private and the losses are socialized. which is NOT capitalism. the truth is THEY do own the place. they own the politicians, ie. lawmakers, who rubber-stamp whatever laws the CORPORATIONS write. they own the regulators and inspectors, who like the rest of the corrupt government just want a little piece on the side. they own the judges, who are more than happy to rubber-stamp FRAUD and PERJURY in a court of “LAW”. the whole system is a scam now, and the taxpayers pay. the stock market is rigged. it bears no semblance to stability or what’s best for the country. electronic stock machines can crash the system in less than a second. does that seem logical or stable? it’s all a scam, and the american taxpayer is the mark. sadly, this is the system many want and will fight for. just more american “exceptionalism”. Comments are closed. Tip Jar Please Donate or Subscribe!