Links 5/28/09

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Feral girl in Siberian city of Chita was brought up by cats and dogs Times Online (hat tip reader Steve L)

Abu Ghraib abuse photos ‘show rape’ Telegraph (hat tip reader Steve L). So far, a Google News search shows this only reported in the UK press (including Reuters UK). And the story went up 10 hours ago, long enough for US outlets to have taken note. Controlled media, anyone?

So Farewell Then... Cassandra

GM bondholders vs UAW retirees: a false equivalence Felix Salmon

World income seen to decline by 3.7% Financial Times

Bill Clinton: I Should Have Raised More Hell About Derivatives Being Unregulated Mark Thoma

The Chrysler Travesty Hearings Continue Tomorrow Tyler Durden

Brazen Tunneling and Inflation Simon Johnson

Antidote du jour:

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  1. Fraud Guy

    Actually, just heard about the Abu Grahib description on the CBS national radio news broadcast.

  2. John Rosevear (a Boston Globe (and thus NYT) property) has a mention of the Telegraph’s report linked from their front page. No detailed story as of yet, but it’s there.

  3. Hugh

    I recommend the Clinton story. There is a time for public figures to know when there time on the public stage is done and it is time for them to gracefully fade away and otherwise STFU. Bill Clinton clearly never learned when that time was. He says he should have done more about dervatives although apparently it was really everyone else’s fault, especially the Republicans and Greenspan.

    As he says, “The argument against regulating derivatives, which Greenspan urged — and this is one of the few things I think — I think Bob Rubin and Larry Summers and those guys have gotten a little bit of a bum rap on this lately…”

    Oh poor Larry and Bob and that bum rap thingie. The truth is that Bob and Larry fought it out with Brooksley Born over deregulating derivatives and Larry eventually forced her out from the CFTC. Yes, they were just innocent bystanders. Why anyone would think they had anything to do with it I don’t know. As for the Democrats, they showed their opposition to all these shenanigans by valiantly helping Republicans pass the CFMA which deregulated derivatives.

    You would never know because Bill doesn’t mention it that LTCM happened on his watch. So despite that multi-billion dollar derivatives splat, clearly no one could have predicted . . .

    As for Glass-Steagall: “On the Glass-Steagall, I’ve really thought about that because No. 1, nonbank banking was already a major part of American life at that time. Letting banks take investment positions I don’t think had much to do with this meltdown. And the more diversified institutions in general were better able to handle what happened. …”

    Again this is revisionist history. Citi was pressuring the government to repeal Glass-Steagall precisely because its expansion plans would have fallen apart, if Glass-Steagall was still on the books.

    And does anyone else find this claim as outrageous as I do:

    “Letting banks take investment positions I don’t think had much to do with this meltdown.”

    I guess this is why the meltdown really didn’t affect banks like Citi and BoA because, you know, they were “diversified”.

    And then there is this:

    “We never dreamed there’d be a time like in the first five years of this decade where literally the whole growth of the country would be in the housing, finance and consumer spending because we had no other investment strategy. …”

    Yes, the dot com bubble could not have taught anyone the dangers of having one out of control “investment strategy”, no way, no sirree.

    So Bill’s take home message to us is that he was a great President and don’t remember any of this other stuff. It just gets in the way, and if you see the way he sees it, i.e. as a great President would see it, he’s really not to blame anyway.

  4. Anonymous Jones

    Clinton’s claims are of course outrageous, but yet still commonplace. Politicians lie, and many, if not most, human beings have a cognitive bias that encourages them to attribute success to their own talents and failure to bad luck or someone else’s fault.

    As for Clinton’s presidency, yes, it may have been a frying pan, but no, it did not turn out to be as hot as the fire we jumped into.

    Optimal decision making depends upon making a sound assessment of the relative benefits of suboptimal solutions.

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