Links 7/6/09

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Coffee ‘may reverse Alzheimer’s’ BBC. A high dose, I might add.

From predator to plant in one gulp Byte Sized Biology

Obama reaches the limit of a friendly tone Clive Crook, Financial Times

Binyam Mohamed launches legal fight to stop US destroying torture images Guardian

Taibbi’s Scream: Stop the political system that lets Goldman Sachs and others run roughshod over society Robert Johnson

Bernie Madoff Is No John Dillinger Frank Rich, New York Times. I am late to this. A good piece with a not-so-hot headline.

As Retailers Cut Back CIties Confront ‘Ghostboxes’ Huffington Post

New Light in Old Bulbs New York Times

Women should have the confidence to go post-PC Lucy Kellaway, Financial Times

Biggest VIX Drop Hides Options Bets S&P 500 Will Fall Bloomberg

The Risk of Junk Upends Leverage BreakingViews

Recession may get worse, Gordon Brown warns world leaders Times Online (hat tip DoctoRx)

The (mythical?) housing wealth effect Charles W. Calomiris, Stanley D. Longhofer, and William Miles. I’d like to know why conventional wisdom among economists was that the wealth effect was significant when asset values were rising and they are now minimizing its impact when they are in the toilet. Does the asymmetrical economist response reflect asymmetrical consumer behavior?

UBS: ‘The disaster in Spain will continue’ Ed Harrison

Banks Take Aim at Revolvers CFO. Today’s must read. Unsexy but important.

Is A Case Of Quant Trading Sabotage About To Destroy Goldman Sachs? Tyler Durden, This by contrast is mind-boggling. Why do I think money laundering is a piece of this too?

Antidote du jour. Red river hog piglets at the LA Zoo (hat tip DoctoRx):

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  1. attempter

    re the revolver piece:

    Here again we see how fraudulent was the orignal TARP premise, endorsed at the time by the banks, that all they needed was liquidity to "get them lending again".

    It's long been clear that the banks, fearing insolvency rather than laboring through illiquidity, don't want to lend at all.

    Here's what I don't understand. The core premise of the Too Big To Fail ideology and the bailout onslaught which has followed from it is that the economy, in order to be restored to health, needs the vigorous credit-facilitating action of the banks.

    But if the banks have abdicated, then why exactly do we need to loot the country to keep them from failing? ("Failing" – but if they're failing to lend, haven't they already failed according to the original premise?)

    Why again can't all federal support be plowed into direct stimulus, and none into financial bailouts?

    Why again do we need the banks at all?

  2. Mo

    Re: Lucy Kellaway

    and if you aren't sexy enough to flirt effectively – then what?

    When I was in my 20's I didn't think I had been treated differently because I was a woman – until I was. Kellaway's informal survey of young women professionals is unconvincing.

    It's this kind of thinking that contributed to the delusion that Caribou Barbie was a viable VP candidate.

  3. Todd Wood


    Article from Eurointelligence:

    "Steinbruck threatens German banks"

    About the scampering in Germany with summaries and links to other articles.

  4. Dave Raithel

    Thanks for pointing back to the Rich essay – I'd also passed it by for the headline. Raises more than one quandary, but I'll cite my preferred: What's to be done about regulators making much much much less money than the regulated? Suppose one proposes the regulators make as much as the regulated … well, no guess how that will play in the media that can't stop watching Nailin' Palin and daily reminds us that Michael Jackson is still dead ….

    Dilbert of July 6th:

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