Links 10/11/08

Nature loss ‘dwarfs bank crisis’ BBC. Yes, they mean in financial terms.

Cats Protection charity faces losing £11.2 million in Icelandic banks Telegraph

YouTube beams up ‘Star Trek’ for long-form video Digital Media. OK, this is a personal weakness of mine….

‘Unbreakable’ encryption unveiled BBC

Why no brass necks on the block? Nils Pratley, Guardian

Monetary Stalinism in Washington Asia Times. Shares some common defects of Asia Times articles, namely being a bit broad brush and overstating some of its points, but the good observations outweigh the shortcomings.

GE takes hit as consumers default on debt Financial Times. With the market roller coaster Friday, this story didn’t get the attention it warranted.

GM, Ford Death Watch Michael Shedlock

Joining the Cult of Austerity Michael Panzner

Paulson’s Failure Felix Salmon.

Antidote du jour. I happen to like the first picture, but since it probably does not suit most readers, you get a more crowd pleasing image below. Just don’t come to expect two antidotes every day:

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  1. EvilHenryPaulson

    As a North American, the one bit about the pan-Iceland bank default that registered with me was the following:
    Fifteen police authorities had nearly 100 million pounds invested in Icelandic banks, according to the Association of Police Authorities, with London’s Scotland Yard authority saying it had 30 million pounds invested.

    Brown certainly had no choice after the fact, but to guarantee deposits.

  2. jean-jacques

    “should I be caught in a burning house and had to save a Rembrandt or a cat caught, I would choose to save the cat”

    Alberto Giacometti

  3. Anonymous

    Post-mortem on the G7 nonevent:

    “Parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus.”
    [The mountains labor; and bear a ridiculous mouse.]

    Interesting comment in the final graf of the NYT article:

    “You now have the full faith and credit of the British government standing behind the banking system,” said Barry Eichengreen, a professor of economics at the University of California, Berkeley. “The British could suck deposits from continental Europe and even the United States.”

    Would that be the financial equivalent of ‘beggar thy neighbour’ competitive devaluations? Stay tuned, we’ll find out. Sounds more like ‘bugger thy neighbour’ to me. In any event, far from designing Bretton Woods III over the weekend, the honorable worthies delivered a tepid saucer of soggy milquetoast.

    As if one needed further confirmation, another NYT article deals with the dangers of going to cash. I thought they meant “long green” folding money; but no, they’re talking about selling your stock mutual funds and moving to the comforting safety of your rock-solid bank [gotta love the naivete of these gov’t-sponsored flacks].

    That would be ‘market timing,’ the Old Grey Lady warns. Do not attempt this at home! Only experts can do it. [The same ones who ran your bank and your mutual funds into the ditch.]

    With the limp-wristed drivel from the G7 and the NYT counseling suckers … errr, “investors,” to “stay the course,” it’s obvious that this is not the bottom. Hell, they haven’t even admitted we’re in recession yet. Is the NBER under a gag order? Or do they report to the same public information officer as the NYT stenographers?

    Anyway, looks like the stars are aligning for a hair-raising rout on Monday. It is just eerie the way they guide the market down by an “orderly” 5 to 7% a day, never tripping that 10% circuit breaker. We still need to BANG THAT SUCKER and scare the living bejeezus out of folks, so gov’t can get plenary carte blanche authority from the KongressKlowns to do “anything and everything, without limit.”

    Ken Rogoff [also from the NYT article] said it better than I could:

    “The original Paulson plan didn’t hit the nail on the head. It’s one thing to go back to Congress six months later and say ‘I didn’t ask for enough.’ It’s another to go back after six days and say ‘I didn’t ask for enough.’ ”

    Mwa ha ha ha … real-life comedy can be better than Shakespeare. More, please, kind sirs! Encore for the G7 jugglers! More dancing bears! Free toasters for new depositors when you open an account at GovBank!

    — Juan Falcone

  4. yoyomo

    A couple of weeks ago you had a picture of two cheetahs with a baby gazelle, didn’t you realize that they were simply toying with it before eating it? How was that an antidote to the day’s misery? More realistically, it was a personification of what the banksters are doing to savers.

  5. dh

    Hayek viewed the free price system, not as a conscious invention (that which is intentionally designed by man), but as spontaneous order, or what is referred to as “that which is the result of human action but not of human design”. Thus, Hayek put the price mechanism on the same level as, for example, language. Such thinking led him to speculate on how the human brain could accommodate this evolved behavior. In The Sensory Order (1952), he proposed, independently of Donald Hebb, the connectionist hypothesis that forms the basis of the technology of neural networks and of much of modern neurophysiology.

    Capitalism leads to dole queues, the scramble for markets, and war.”

  6. Anonymous

    As I noted earlier the cash market for bonds is closed Monday for Columbus Day, but are stock market and the futures exchanges open?

    That could trigger some weird stuff!

  7. rhhardin

    My experience is that dogs go head-first under the covers, taking them as a den. I suspect the pic is posed.

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