Posted by Larry Doyle on April 30th, 2013 7:23 AM |
If the American public is concerned about the dysfunction within Washington D.C., after reading two inside editions on the games being played within our nation’s capital, the public should be even more concerned than ever.
I recently completed two enlightening books, Confidence Men by Ron Suskind and Bailout by Neil Barofsky. I recommend both to those who want to gain a real understanding of how our nation’s capital does NOT work, that is, does NOT work for us. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on May 2nd, 2012 6:28 AM |
I truly appreciate those in our nation who can properly frame the debate which MUST be had if we are to protect our country and the future for our children. I heard just such a man last evening. I compel you to listen to him.
Who is this man?
Senator Tom Coburn, Republican of Oklahoma. He laid out not only our greatest problem but also indicted the corrosive culture in Washington that has allowed this problem to grow. Coburn provides the barometer by which all of our supposed politicos should be measured.
What did Coburn have to say? A lot. Try these on for size… (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on June 7th, 2011 6:55 AM |
Truth, transparency, and integrity.
The compromising of these virtues may be the cost of doing business in our nation but make no mistake the price we collectively pay is enormous. Whether in Washington or on Wall Street, the ability to compromise our prized virtues has truly been raised to an art form.
From derivative transactions which disguise unprecedented levels of risk to bond indentures which require advanced legal degrees to interpret, our ‘friends’ on Wall Street with assistance from ‘their’ friends in Washington have displayed little regard for the aforementioned virtues which are the foundation for real ‘sense on cents’.
More often than not,though,the violation of our virtues is viewed in an impersonal light. Wall Street and Washington are behemoths. The American public and investors at large are faceless. In my opinion, our financial services industry and government would just as soon keep it this way.
Let’s challenge them. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on May 25th, 2010 11:47 AM |
People can debate the relative strength of the economy all they want. I firmly believe that from a macro-level, our economy has years to go before it has a real chance to recover. Why years?
1. The banking system overall remains loaded with an excessive amount of delinquent loans. Uncle Sam will continue to siphon money from the American public and deliver it to the banks. In the process, these “earnings” will be utilized to write down the values of loans and securities it holds at inflated levels.
2. Credit will not truly flow until the health of banks, especially the smaller and community based banks, is substantially stronger. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on April 20th, 2010 9:17 AM |
Incestuous relationships can last a long time. When two willing consorts are engaged in incest without it being exposed, the incest can grow and ultimately become cancerous. Incestuous partners may believe they are pleasing each other at little expense to other family members. What a lie. Make no mistake, there is always a third party involved in incest. Who is that? Collectively, the family. In the case of our financial crisis circa 2010, the incestuous relationship between Wall Street and Washington has badly damaged the American family. Let us not allow either of these incestuous partners to define our current turmoil by asking family members to pick sides.
Why am I writing this? (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on March 23rd, 2010 6:11 AM |
Sifting through all of the pros and cons of healthcare reform, I strongly believe the greatest fear for the majority of Americans is that Uncle Sam will screw up the delivery of healthcare itself. Healthcare is the equivalent of the third rail for Americans. Uncle Sam can go ahead and touch almost every other aspect of our lives, but when it comes to our health and access to our physicians, now that is truly personal.
Can Uncle Sam deliver? I guess it is possible, but regrettably Americans increasingly do not trust the “old man” on this topic. (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on December 28th, 2009 12:04 PM |
I almost vomited this morning upon reading the lead article in The Wall Street Journal. The principles and values I cherish and which I believe are the keys to our long term economic prosperity are under continual siege. The American dream is under siege, as well. Our nation’s economic future has never looked so cloudy and uncertain. Why? As The WSJ writes, After the Bailouts, Washington’s the Boss:
Only as the recession recedes will it become fully evident how permanently the state’s role has expanded and whether, as a consequence, a new, hybrid strain of American capitalism is emerging.
One thing is clear: The government is a much bigger force in today’s U.S. economy than it was before the financial crisis. “The frontier between the state and market has shifted,” says Daniel Yergin, whose 1998 book “Commanding Heights” chronicled the ascent of free-market forces starting in the 1980s. “The realm of the state has been enlarged.”
Why am I so concerned? For the following reasons: (more…)
Posted by Larry Doyle on November 23rd, 2009 12:27 PM |
Band-aids, quick fixes, partisan posturing, and the like will do little to address the structural and cultural deficiencies which played into our current economic crisis.
High five to SH for sharing a report (a link to the full report is provided at the end of this post) by Harvard Business School’s William A. Sahlman entitled “Management and the Financial Crisis (We have met the enemy and he is us…).” Sahlman does an outstanding job of pinpointing five critical components of firms and institutions that failed during this crisis. At the end of this post I have provided a link to Mr. Sahlman’s 35-page report, but allow me to provide some highlights. Sahlman writes:
I assert that most of the problems evidenced so prominently during this financial crisis can be traced to failures in five related managerial systems inside each major private and public actor in the financial markets:
Incentives – how risk and reward are shared; how people behave if they act in their own perceived best interests given the structure of pecuniary and non‐pecuniary payoffs
Control & Information Technology – how limits are placed on behavior; how information is captured and shared; how risk and reward are measured and how those assessments affect tactics and strategy
Accounting – how managers choose accounting policies; how managers measure economic profits & losses, as distinct from GAAP profits and losses
Human Capital – the process by which people with certain characteristics (skill, experience, networks, character, and attitude) are attracted and managed or encouraged to leave any organization
Culture – the values that guide individual and group decisions
While Sahlman thoroughly reviews these five factors and how they misfired in a number of failed institutions, he goes one step further in addressing why they misfired. I commend him for it. He writes: (more…)