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Thoughts Online Magazine
Collected Articles on Culture & Politics
No Longer Disastrous News 
8th-Jan-2009 06:15 am
The "TED Spread" (the index of how trustworthy banks think other banks are) has gone from "total disaster" to "tight money" -- in other words, we're not facing a meltdown, just bad times ahead.

And this is the good news. Economics, the dismal science....
8th-Jan-2009 03:01 pm (UTC)

That means gas prices are going to start going back up, though, doesn't it? :(
8th-Jan-2009 03:31 pm (UTC)
Not necessarily, not if people don't buy much "gas" (sorry, we in Britain say "petrol"). And when you consider the yelps of pain that low petroleum and mineral-gas prices have called forth from some of the nastiest people in the world - Chavez, Putin, Ahmedinajad, etc. - I hope that takes a long, long time.
8th-Jan-2009 03:28 pm (UTC)
It actually is the best news I have heard from that front in quite a while. Indeed, if banks stuck to tight money for several years, it would be a good education for the British and American public in how to live within their means and use their own money. (Italian banks have always been famously tight-fisted, and guess what? Not a single one of them has come even close to going under. When the crisis was gathering strength, the international markets tried knocking down the biggest of them, Unicredit - and Unicredit victoriously responded by massively recapitalizing itself out of its own resources, with complete confidence from its shareholders. That is something in which we can teach the rest of the world a little lesson, I think.) The bad news, on the other hand, is that the politicians have learned nothing: Gordon Brown, in particular, is still pursuing the futile phantom of "kick-starting the economy" by means of ever more insane "stimulus packages". He has driven the pound into the ground and interest rates into negative territory (keeping inflation into consideration) with the result that this so-called stimulus is punishing savers and investors, the very people who ought to be encouraged and rewarded. And of course people aren't buying, because they are in debt enough already, and this shyster's trick of encouraging them to take yet more credit simply will not work. And someone must tell Obama the same.
8th-Jan-2009 11:45 pm (UTC)
I live well within my means, thanks.

People here know what they ought to be doing. The problem is not knowing, it is doing. They do not *want* to be thrifty, because of the culture of entitlement and frivolity that exists.
9th-Jan-2009 12:08 am (UTC)
Unicredit? Achilles heel of Italy according to a well known financial blogger?

Ok. Should be an interesting year.
9th-Jan-2009 04:48 am (UTC)
The well known financial blogger is plainly wrong, then. Happens, when foreigners think they have an idea what is going on in Italy. Just notice this: not a single financial institution in Italy, NOT ONE, has gone bust or needed rescuing. How long has this crisis been going on? How many British and American banks and other finance companies have gone? Surely it's in double figures now? And how many have been nationalized? In Italy, the banking sector has been DE-nationalized over the last couple of decades...
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