Links 12/2/08

Swimming swans push up the cost of the 12 Days of Christmas Guardian. No deflation here.

2,700-year-old marijuana found in Chinese tomb TheStar

The Great Crash of 2008 Robert Reich

Schwarzenegger declares fiscal emergency in Calif. AP

China Fears Restive Migrants As Jobs Disappear in Cities and Yuan’s Fall Watched Ahead of U.S.-China Summit Wall Street Journal. We got brickbats when we suggested a couple of months ago that Beijing might nudge the yuan lower. But today’s move was a market reaction.

Tudor Jones suspends withdrawals from flagship fund Financial Times

Long Bond Returns Most Since 1995 as Rosenberg Sees ‘Bubble’ Bloomberg, Yes, but these bubbles can go higher and longer than you’d ever expect.

U.S. ignored warning to tighten lending rules GlobeInvestor

Expenditure vs investment — thinking clearly Steve Waldman

A note on Japan’s experiment with quantitative easing Marshall Auerbach, Credit Writedowns

Commodity Pay Falls Faster Than Oil as Goldman, Funds Retrench Bloomberg. So much for the idea that commodity traders needed good bonuses to keep such valuable traders from fleeing the coop.

Stigma, schmigma Willem Buiter. Comes down strongly against the Fed and for Bloomberg in Bloomberg’s Freedom of Informatoin Act suit to get the central bank to disclose who has been providing what sort of collateral for loans under various Fed facilities.

Antidote du jour. A double today. The video of the parrot petting a kitten is intriguing, but might not suit everyone:

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  1. fresno dan

    Thought the Buiter article was good. And it points out the problems with gubermint – the almost inevitable desire to gloss over real problems – insolvent banks; inept Fed oversight. We will be Japan

  2. CrocodileChuck


    That’s a sulphur crested cockatoo (an esteemed member of the parrot family)

    Crocodile Chuck

  3. joebhed

    for some reason I coudn’t open the Buiter post, even using his blog link on this page.
    Hope it self corrects.

  4. Anonymous

    In unrelated news the BDI is below 700 and is now around the operating costs of just keeping the ships going.

  5. Anonymous

    RE: Reich.

    Reich can only find fault with our economy since the late 90’s and refuses to see beyond his political agenda the similiar business cycles of presidents Reagan, Bush Sr, Clinton, and George Bush share strong similarities. The similarities are large trade deficits, manufacturing job loss, asset price inflation, rising debt-to-income ratios, and detachment of wages from productivity growth.
    Reich always see’s these problems as an opporunity to retrain workers for the new economy no matter what the social implications might be and boast wages to somehow keep the treadmill moving.

  6. M.G.

    Commenting Buiter’s articles, I have already written elsewhere that one way to solve this crisis is establish transparency and disclosures of balance sheets and accounts of banks, including central banks. It’s the only way to correct any information asymmetry and related risks for all concerned parties. A distinguished economics professor in U.S. told me that nobody was interested in his country (and I would say in Europe neither). In the blogsphere we start to talk about it. Can we convince somebody to rule accordingly? It needs just few words of legislation..

  7. Anonymous

    The parrot is engaging in typical preening behavior. The do it to each other and will even do it to their human owners. I suppose you could say that preening is category of petting, but the behavior is more practical and less purely emotional.

  8. John Emerson

    The buried stoner was presumably a Tokharian (Yueh-Chih). That part of China is now Turkish and has never been inhabited primarily by Chinese (Han). The Indo-European Yueh-Chih controlled the area for a long period.

  9. RPB

    I wonder if any of the scientists decided to smoke it. . .

    The BDI is screwed. Certain components are not shipping. It is a free fall. What do you think this will do to scrap prices over the next few years? I smell bargains and almost feel like going long some water-born iron.

  10. doc holiday

    It’s been many moons patiently waiting for interspecies material for metaphors. However, this recurrence comes with a build-out of an additional posting of a fox metaphor, captured in a photo versus the dynamic contrapuntal video material from which to apparently triangulate from — why do this to me Yves? Why, why, why?

    How the F can I begin to connect this puzzle and make sense … talking to you is like talking to a wall full of electrons, so maybe you should look in the mirror and ask if you would be willing to take this on! Oh sure, you say, it’s easy to bitch and — sure, you took the time to post this, but WTF were you thinking when you added the damn fox — is that the point, that the fox represents old media and simplicity which challenges us all to grow, to change to re-wire and re-build? Is this some graphical twist on the auto industry and their inability to morph and evolve into something for a new age? Huh, huh, is it?

    I’m not sure where this was to go in that context, but if we assume that this is about the screwed up auto industry with its fox in the hen house relationship, i.e, the enemy is within the auto industry, and thus we have seen the enemy and it is us — then how does the new age video with a friggn talking bird petting a kitty play off that component?

    If I seem tense, it’s because it’s friggn painful to go to the next level — because, now, I have to use help from the previous poster, who apparently goes by the name of Anonymous (like I’m buying that crap) who plays the part of chance in providing a clue relating to preening behavior.

    Would I have had any chance in hell of pulling that out of the blue — no! Thus, anon mouse represents the network that connects the fox to the hen house infrastructure, where the insiders, the roosters, the chicks are all busy pecking away inside the same old orgy-like structure, collectively engaging in preening behavior, like little zombies strutting around in a daze, pecking away at the fabric of time, as if money is somehow not related to the survival of their society and the hands that feed them!!!!

    Perhaps Yves does want to stimulate thoughts here in terms of the failure of the auto industry, along with the banking industry and obviously all of government as an act of preening, thus, a definition should be provided here:

    2. To dress or groom (oneself) with elaborate care; primp.
    3. To take pride or satisfaction in (oneself); gloat.

    Hence, we have in-effective, in-efficient, lazy, self-centered, egotistical maniacs running networks of nepotistic retards that are clueless about everything they do — with the exception of preening and stepping up to their feeding trough, where they blindly consume an endless supply of materials which they gorge on, slurp on and depend on. This is their entitlement and screw everyone outside the fence… They scream for another hit off the taxpayer teat, because they are used to a free ride without accountability, and no one has challenged them until now, and now, we will watch a pea and shell game to discuss the possibility of changes within that system — versus tacking a tractor and pushing this hen house over a cliff into the ocean, where these pigs should all be food for Poseidon.

    Meanwhile as these pigs and chickens wait for more of the same, along comes the fox, who represents the Trickster figure who exhibits gender and form variability

    The question here, has to do with the fox inside the walls who takes advantage of an opportunity to be inside the hen house, or is the fox playing an active role in shaking out the weak hands and ridding the system of excesses?

    Thanks Yves, sorry to get pissed, but thanks for pushing me and using shock therapy (to make a point).

    Also see:

    Reynard has been summoned to the court of king Noble, or Leo, the Lion, to answer charges brought against him by Isengrim the Wolf. Other anthropomorphic animals, including Bruin the Bear, Baldwin the Ass, Tibert (Tybalt) the Cat, all attempt one stratagem or another. The stories typically involve satire whose usual butts are the aristocracy and the clergy, making Reynard a peasant-hero character. Reynard’s principal castle, Maupertuis, is available to him whenever he needs to hide away from his enemies. Some of the tales feature Reynard’s funeral, where his enemies gather to deliver maudlin elegies full of insincere piety, and which feature Reynard’s posthumous revenge. Reynard’s wife Hermeline appears in the stories, but plays little active role, although in some versions she remarries when Reynard is thought dead, thereby becoming one of the people he plans revenge upon.

  11. dearieme

    “Robert Reich is the nation’s 22nd Secretary of Labor”: wouldn’t “was” do better there?

  12. russell1200

    So Doc, you don’t like parrots do you?

    I have a certain affinity for the Red Fox in so far as the name Russell has occasionally been held to mean “like a fox”. Given that Russell is almost certainly derived from the Old French for “little red” it is not hard to see the connection.

    But even with that said, I vaguely recall reading that Parrots are one of the birds that have a natural counting ability that exceed some peoples ability without mnemonic tricks: a typical person can distinguish 4 objects at a glance without resorting to “counting.” I think Parrots tested out around 5, and of course they cannot “count:: maybe they cheat and use their toes.

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