1. Carrick

    As a outsider to the financial world, that Epicurean Dealmaker post was a little interesting to read, but my god is the writer’s voice obnoxious. Felt like I was eavesdropping on a 13 year old trying to rattle his peers.

    1. Dikaios Logos

      TED is always long-winded and pompous, that’s his shtick. But if he just said “There is an entrenched clique of assholes who are self-actualized in I-banking,” he wouldn’t feel as good. I agree with him that those assholes will always stay in I-banking, but boxing them in still makes lots of sense.

      About 150 years ago, there was a similar clique of rent-seeking a-holes that crossed the line. Their descendants are often remarkably similar to those ancestors in many respects, but their prominence and power is vastly diminished. I am not sure that Wall Street will suffer the fate Natchez, MS and Charleston, SC did, but we shouldn’t dismiss the possibility.

      1. craazyman

        Yeah, youze guys beat me to it.

        No need to shine that puerile dark glamour on these characters. So what. That’s human nature. There are some asses I’d love to kick just for the hell of it too, no need to pay me a penny.

        That human intinct for ass kicking is constructively channeled in professional sports, where rules and referees turn potentially murderous chaos into something that approaches an art form, enabling it to preserve itself and inspire the world. What pitchers would rather throw 33 spitballs and bean 4 batters to win, versus throwing a perfect game?

        That should be an instructive lesson for running a financial system — where the competitive impulses are the same.

    2. DownSouth

      I agreed with most of what the Epicurean Dealmaker had to say, and by all means, may rational choice theory RIP:

      Rational choice theory takes the invisible hand metaphor literally by trying to explain the length and breadth of human behavior on the basis of individual utility maximization, which is fancy talk for the narrow pursuit of self-interest.

      But his conclusion hit very wide of the mark:

      These are personalities who do not go gentle into that good night. All you would need would be for one or two of them to decide they would rather watch the world burn than crawl into a hole.

      The masters of the universe do in fact “go gentle into that good night,” as the PBS special The Crash of 1929 amply illustrates:

      If you have only time to watch the last 3-minute segment, “The End of an Era,” it’s well worthwhile.

      William C. Durant, founder of General Motors and Wall Street titan during the 20s, ended up running a bowling alley and selling a cure for dandruff before his death in 1947.

      William C. Durant, another master of the universe of the 20s, went into a washroom and put a bullet through his head in 1940.

      1. Dave Raithel

        “William C. Durant, founder of General Motors and Wall Street titan during the 20s, ended up running a bowling alley and selling a cure for dandruff before his death in 1947.

        William C. Durant, another master of the universe of the 20s, went into a washroom and put a bullet through his head in 1940.”

        That’s some magic act!!!

        If you’d like to have some fun seeing where rational choice theory can push one, I can think of no better source than Derek Parfit’s “Reasons and Persons.” I was NEVER sure just what exactly HE was concluding, but his construction of the dilemmas to which rational choice theory can drive one are a joy to read. Still, getting past RTC as a fetish will not obviate the necessity to make choices between alternatives – moral dilemmas are as real as rational ones.

    3. Dave Raithel

      The trope from “The Dark Night” to the personalities I saw in “American Psycho” amused me, as both starred Christian Bale. (The challenge of business cards was both frightening and hilarious.) Art sure can be coincidental.

      And we let such people have sway over our futures because why?

  2. Skippy

    Did you go no a little trip today Yves or was that just some tomfoolery on someone else’s part.

    @Carrick, Its called indignant rage and even people that see them selves being of status and bearing fall pray to it in light of what has transpired.

    Skippy…kitty is good as long as it stays away from the fan.

    1. Skippy

      Damn Yves, no wonder your tired I just verified via David Merkel’s blog, your head must be swimming.

      In your wildest dreams did you ever think you would be invited and briefed on policy at the Treasury and will this require an addition to your already burdensome book.

      I’m quite excited in seeing the juxtaposition between the bloggers that attended on their sites.

      Skippy…gotta give ya credit where credit is due, you have quite some drive when you set your mind to a task…Kudos.

    2. Carrick

      I just thought it sounded a little sophomoric in tone — hobbled by straying into “writing exercise” territory, more than being a choked by product of indignant rage. Anyway, just saying.. I guess its understandable, for an author who generally covers a “dry” field.

  3. IdahoSpud

    Hi Yves,

    Yes I read at David Jansen’s blog that you and several other bloggers were invited to the Treasury.

    I would assume this invitation was an attempt to co-opt your opinions.

    Winning over the mainstream media has already been handled. GE-owned MSNBC is already onboard with the government’s “optomistim-will-prevail-over-facts” propaganda.

    I hope you continue to provide a questioning and uncompromising moral compass for those of us who dislike the gray scale facade for government/financial corruption.

  4. Advocatus Diaboli

    I believe that we will not have a church of citigroup in 2,000 years, regardless of any artificial ‘resurrection’ of citi.

    Citi is more akin to a vampire..

  5. attempter

    The Dealmaker piece offers wisdom. I’ve previously compared these psychopaths to the Terminator – “It cannot be bargained with, it cannot be reasoned with, and it will not stop, ever…”

    So what can “regulation” do with such criminals? Nothing. You simply have to destroy them and reform the whole economy so that they can never gain a foothold again.

  6. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    By the way, who have done more damage to the world – smart rats or not-so-smart rats?

Comments are closed.