We Speak to BNN About Europe, Economic Outlook

Wow, am I sour faced in this one!

I had gotten to the studio ahead of time (standard protocol) and was miked up earlier than usual. So I listed to probably 12 minutes of unbelievable cheerleading, which is not the sort of thing I expected on BNN, which usually does not sell the CNBC Kool-Aid. I think I was braced for a fight which never came.

Hope you enjoy it regardless.

You can view the segment here.

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  1. psychohistorian

    I persisted in working through network problems to watch this and it was worth it. You showed genuine concern Yves which you shouldn’t be bothered about…these ARE trying times because there is so much ignorance out there and you are helping to teach.

    My reaction to the guy’s (my apology for no name) first question was that he was asking if you thought that the street action in England would spread to the US. I think you went the right direction with the question.

    I guess I was a little disappointed that public and private were not used more when describing the EU setup and banks in general. The existential question : is banking a utility and if so to what degree? This need to be discussed publicly IMO and the sooner the better. I guess if the answer is no then we continue being pond scum in a dying world.

    I do appreciate that you are speaking truth to power.

  2. Christophe

    Yves, do not delude yourself that you were unnecessarily braced for an imagined fight. That ridiculous shill for the Canadian banking industry did indeed try to attack your insights twice. The fact that you are completely out of his league and managed to effortlessly mute him on both occasions does not mean that he was not fighting against you. He just does not belong in the ring with someone with your training. Keep up the good fight!

      1. Bill C.

        Yeah, that guy was trying to move you in
        the direction he wanted you to go, and you
        smacked him down (nicely) both times.

        And I didn’t think your affect was at all
        off-putting or inappropriate. In fact, his
        fixed smile was off-putting.

  3. Eclair

    S’ok, Yves. One would have to be lobotomized to sport a happy face under the conditions we find ourselves in.

  4. Linus Huber

    Oh, that was the first time I saw how you look, Yves. Did not know that such a beauty is behind all this knowledge.

    I liked the interview, you are real competent and definitely in another liga than those 2 interviewers. Keep it up.

  5. justanobserver

    Good interview Yves !

    Couldn’t believe the commentator started in with the kick the can down the road idiocy about the deficit. What is it with these people being stuck in right wing talking-point land ?

  6. T

    Great job! Co-host is a former I Banker. Clearly he believes the same as many, since it would be bad it can’t happen. Thank you for doing these pieces, it’s great to read you but hearing you speak is a treat.

  7. dugsdale

    Yves, I look forward to you carrying your grim-faced depth and expertise to venues like Charlie Rose; HIS reaction to all the financial turmoil for the last few days was to have on his show, last night, for one solid hour…..GEORGE WILL.

    Though he clearly doesn’t know it, Charlie needs you on the show to counter his slavish, worshipful “coverage” of the plight of the rich in our time.

    Please continue to mention your video guest shots, and any public appearances. You are a pleasure to watch.

      1. dugsdale

        Rex–because with more guests like Ms Smith, his audience might learn something other than tortured conventional “wisdom.” And his show bookers might learn that ‘good television’ doesn’t have to equal smarm and sycophancy. Foolish hope, perhaps, but…

  8. solo

    Excellent analysis; I only wish that you’d share your thoughts on the possibility of adding inflation to the stagnationist thesis that you laid out. Bernanke obviously wants inflation per Keynesian m.o. of clipping the employees–“sticky wages” mean that the inflationary clip accrues to the employers–but this solution can turn into a problem, esp. in light of the competitive devaluation of the $ already underway. Your countenance was apropos: You indeed looked tired, physically and emotionally, but the tiredness was that of a serious person bothered by rude children.

  9. Jan Martin

    Did you say in your interview that businesses weren’t investing? I thought that businesses actually were investing pretty significantly in equipment, but not in labor (as you do say). Hence the slow-growth economy (I liked your invocation of the paradox of thrift there, by the way).

  10. Max424

    You did good, kid. You brought the motherfuckin’ news, as we say in my parts. And you look fine; mighty damn fine.

    But, we must avoid the end of the segment nose scratch, Yves! Until that little red light goes off, a Spartan must maintain iron discipline!

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      I realized as soon as I did it that it was too early, but that studio didn’t have a remote monitor of the show OR a red light! Absolutely NO cue as to when the camera was on.

  11. LAS

    I would not call it “enjoyable” to hear necessarily, but certainly important and significant. Great interview.

  12. Psychoanalystus

    Brilliant, Yves. The Euro Zone is screwed.

    Some impressions.

    I am in Europe right now – at the moment in Romania. Romania is in the EU but not in the Eurozone, and has its own floating currency, although it is pressured to join the Euro too. While the mood here is not nearly as pessimistic as it is in the US or Western Europe, and there are certainly no riots in the streets as there are in England, people do worry, especially since many formerly Romanian banks have been bought out (as the neo-liberal plan of the 1990s and 2000s for Romania) by Austrian, French, and… you’ll never guess who else… yes, that wretched Greece. But life goes on pretty much the same way as before here, at a typical slower-paced, laid-back Romanian style. Also, amazingly enough, coming here from the US, where the infrastructure is rapidly collapsing and the US in general looks more dilapidated by the day, makes Romania look more advanced, more developed, and richer than the US. Foe one thing, there are fewer potholes in the street, the airport looks a lot nicer, there is decent public transportation, and I have yet to see any panhandlers begging for money in the streets (which in California are virtually on every corner now).

    The big news of the day on Romanian business English language television was that China and Romania are aggressively pursuing bilateral business partnerships. China is being considered to build a new network of freeways across Romania. They apparently would provide their own workers from China. Prior to this, the company that was contracted to do this project was that proverbially corrupt American corporation called Bechtel (sister in misdeeds to Halliburton), which in 6 years was only able to build 25 miles of freeway, at a cost per mile 10 times that of the average cost of freeway building anywhere in the world. Six years ago Bechtel was awarded the contract under tremendous pressure from the US government and as a precondition to Romania’s joining NATO, both of which are now see as major mistakes.

    I should also say that my Romanian friends tell me today that 6 years ago America was admired and looked up to in Romania. People really admired America. Today, they say, it is viewed as the apogee of corruption, a nation given to violence, war, and injustice. A rogue, primitive-minded, and brutal country. I am not sure that the morons in Washington really live in reality, because nobody ever mentions the overseas perception about the country anymore. All we are told is that the election of Obummer’s changed that perception, which I do not see reflected in Romania, Greece, or the many European countries I have been visiting in recent years. I think people here see that the US policy is now actually worse under Obummer than under Bush.

    Just some impressions. Thank you for your time.

    And, if I may add one more thing I can’t resist: “Go Bechtel, go! You’re working wonders for America’s image!”

  13. neo-realist

    I do hope that the co-host is wrong and that B of A (for personal reasons) is not bailed out and is broken up or wound down.

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