Links 8/19/08

Look at these headlines on the same research: Future impact of global warming is worse when grazing animals are considered, scientists suggest PhysOrg versus Grazing animals may lessen Arctic warning United Press International. Guess which headline got it right. And what to make of the seeming typo?

A third of new PCs being downgraded to XP, says metrics researcher ComputerWorld

The Elephant in the Tank, Andy Grove, Portfolio. The former Intel CEO begs to differ with Al Gore and Boone Pickens.

Debt-Free: An Unrealistic Expectation Elizabeth Warren, Credit Slips

Merrill’s surprise CDO writedown, revisited FT Alphaville

Why UK House Prices Are Going Much Lower Cassandra and Rush to rent as house sales dry up Independent (note how Cassandra’s anecdote counters the cheery tone of the Independent piece)

Frugality is the New Black Paul Kedrosky. We’ve said for some time that consumption has no where to go but down…and as a coldwater Yankee, it will be nice to have company for a change.

No Limit to Greenspan’s Once-In-A-Century Events Caroline Baum, Bloomberg. This is as close to blistering as Baum ever gets. She has also come around the point of view that Greenspan’s running commentary on the economy is singularly unhelpful and his fee-mongering is unseemly (here).

Antidote du jour:

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  1. doc holiday

    First off, you have to watch this:

    The Spiral – Part I – Those Vultures

    Second, we seem to be somewhat reliant on supernatural themes here in regard to animal shamanism and interspecies behaviourisms. In this case, we have the floating spiritual-like ghost-dog, reminiscent of the Dickinsonian period, which for all practical purposes, probably ended around 1870. Thus, that gives a starting point for a metaphor relating to classical economic theory from hacks like John Stuart Mill.

    Indeed, the first side of the canine coin relating to this metaphorical image from Yves is based on the following:

    Mill's early economic philosophy was one of free markets. However, he accepted interventions in the economy, such as a tax on alcohol, if there were sufficient utilitarian grounds. He also accepted the principle of legislative intervention for the purpose of animal welfare. Mill believed that "equality of taxation" meant "equality of sacrifice" and that progressive taxation penalized those who worked harder and saved more and was therefore "a mild form of robbery".

    As for the other side of the coin, i.e, the mutt-like dog, which is being attacked by the spirit-dog, I think it just represents repression as it relates to Mill:

    Re: Mill believes that “the struggle between Liberty and Authority is the most conspicuous feature in the portions of history.” For him, liberty in antiquity was a “contest… between subjects, or some classes of subjects, and the government". By liberty, he meant protection against the tyranny of the political rulers” and he calls it “social liberty.” He introduces different tyrannies such as social tyranny, and the tyranny of the majority.

    That could wrap things up, but in summary, Spirit-Dog is hovering above the subjugated old mutt in a display of tyranny, thus we can assume this is also about pension fund abuse and the collusion of The Department Of Labor with the derivative underwriters that are granted exemptions from prohibited actions. In addition, it sure as hell seems like there are a lot of lobbying efforts to help banks, casinos and hedge funds sneak into money market funds … and if the world isn't going to hell, it sure as hell is going to the dogs.

  2. doc holiday

    I didn’t know where to add this so here yah go (here):


    All in all, these developments have transformed the financial system, making it more market-oriented, and have also increasingly blurred the traditional distinction between a bank-based and a market-based system. While these developments have resulted in financial intermediation becoming more based on market prices, they have also allowed a wider dispersion of risks across the system. Partly in light of these developments, the past decades have seen a relative decline in the importance of the traditional model of financial intermediation whereby banks obtain funding mainly via deposits and use these funds to grant loans that they hold to maturity. This model has over time been complemented with another, where banks increasingly rely on market-based funding and transfer a major part of their credit risk off balance sheet. In other words, some segments of the banking sector have moved away from the traditional “originate-and-hold” model and towards an “originate-and-distribute” model. A simple illustration of the changing nature of banking is the increasing “funding gap” (i.e. the difference between deposits from and loans to the non-financial private sector) of euro area MFIs, which suggests that banks are tending to rely more on non-deposit funding, such as market-based debt and securitisation. However, except for the larger banks, the majority of euro area banks have not adopted the “originate-and-distribute” banking model and still base their operations on the traditional“originate-and-hold” model.

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