Talk Talk Talk Talk Talk Myself to Death: Playing Catch-Up

Monday, September 15, 2008

Playing Catch-Up

I hadn't intended to slack off in keeping up with what's going on while we were in Minneapolis, that's just sort of what happened. Although presidential politics would be expected to be the order of the day, the really big news is financial. Is it time to panic when the headline on the Wall Street Journal reads: "Crisis on Wall Street as Lehman Totters, Merrill Is Sold, AIG Seeks to Raise Cash"? Krugman suggests that it's not yet, but he doesn't exactly have the highest level of confidence.

Will the U.S. financial system collapse today, or maybe over the next few days? I don't think so — but I'm nowhere near certain. You see, Lehman Brothers, a major investment bank, is apparently about to go under. And nobody knows what will happen next.

After some explanatory material about the latest financial shenanigans and Lehman's problems in particular, Krugman closes with this:

And so here we are, with Mr. Paulson apparently feeling that playing Russian roulette with the U.S. financial system was his best option. Yikes.

Inspires confidence by the bucketloads, doesn't it?

I suspect this story will move quickly once the markets open tomorrow, so I it's probably not worthwhile to examine it too closely tonight only for that material to be outmoded by the time many people start reading this. For the time being, hold on to your seat. And, as Phil Gramm, John McCain's potential secretary of the treasury would likely say, "No whining!"


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