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Posts Tagged ‘populism’

Beggar Thy Neighbor

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 5th, 2010 12:17 PM |

So much has happened along our economic landscape over the last two to three years that it is hard to weigh the magnitude and depth of many of the developments. That said, the simple fact is the tectonic plates underlying our global economy have shifted massively as a result of the enormous financial earthquake of 2008. While global governments and central banks have performed varying degrees of  triage to save states, nations, and regions, the movements of the plates are continuing along under the surface. To that end, what is the economic reality now bubbling above the surface given the shift in our tectonic plates below? Let’s navigate and review the reality known as Beggar Thy Neighbor, defined by our friendly Investing primer as, 

An international trading policy that utilizes currency devaluations and protective barriers to alleviate a nation’s economic difficulties at the expense of other countries. While the policy may help repair an economic hardship in the nation, it will harm the country’s trading partners, worsening its economic status.  (more…)

Clifford Asness: Appalled in Greenwich, CT

Posted by Larry Doyle on January 26th, 2010 4:06 PM |

We were first introduced to Clifford Asness in the midst of the Chrysler bailout last May. At that point, Mr. Asness unabashedly took on President Obama in penning, “Unafraid In Greenwich, CT.”  To highlight his piece, I wrote “Hedge Fund Manager Responds to Barack’s Bullying.”

Today we are revisited once again by Mr. Asness as he rails on the White House for the populist pandering provided by our President. I am all for real reform promoting truth, transparency, and integrity, but when an administration and the Congress are not capable of addressing their own house and exposing their own shortcomings, then I believe they lose the bully pulpit. Obama should fully expose Mary Schapiro and her tenure at FINRA and then take on Wall Street.

Asness is again not bashful in bashing the administration. (more…)

John McCain Gets America’s Rage

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 23rd, 2009 3:45 PM |

Who does not respect John McCain? Despite what one may think of McCain’s political views, his personal character and courage are unquestioned. His “straight talk express” did not carry him to the White House, but it gained him the respect of many people from both sides of the aisle.

Today, Senator McCain shares a recent experience which highlights the rage boiling in America at this very moment. The Wall Street Journal provides a forum for McCain in a CEO Council Report entitled, “How to Rebuild Global Prosperity.” I thought so highly of this entire report that highlighted it in the Newsworthy section of Sense on Cents.

I thank The WSJ for producing such a comprehensive report, and I welcome sharing Senator McCain’s thoughts and opinions which were included in the Economy and Finance section of the report:

JOHN McCAIN: I’d like to tell you what I think is happening in Arizona and across America.

I have never seen anything like I am seeing in America today. My home state of Arizona is the second hardest-hit state. We have real unemployment around 17%. The level of anger and frustration and the anger is directed at what we do in Washington and what you do on Wall Street. (more…)

What’s Fueling America’s Rage?

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 20th, 2009 10:56 AM |

What is fueling America’s populist rage?

Is it the unemployment situation? Is it the volatility in the markets? The weakening greenback? Perhaps the generally perceived level of incompetence amongst our political and corporate leaders? Is it a media that does not hold our public officials and corporate leaders accountable?

While I could write extensively – and I have – on each of these questions, I am firmly convinced the ever increasing levels of populist rage go much deeper than any of these questions. How deep? To the very core of this great nation. What is at the core of any individual, institution, or nation?

Honesty and integrity.

Americans are a strong people. America is a proud land. That said, I believe we have allowed a semblance of moral decay to increasingly infiltrate our very core and we are now paying the price for it. How is this growing moral decay exemplified?

I am not suggesting that those who might hold differing opinions than mine on specific questions addressing ethical and moral topics as being the root of our current problems. I would like to think I am not so narrow-minded or judgmental. I do believe, however, that the rage sweeping our country on both sides of the political aisle stems from the reality that Americans are increasingly convinced that our political representatives, government officials, financial leaders, and their selected constituents have not been honest with America. (more…)

Chris Dodd Has an Epiphany

Posted by Larry Doyle on November 11th, 2009 8:58 AM |

Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT)

Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT)

Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) is in a fight for his political life. Dodd continues to trail his primary Republican opponent Rob Simmons in recent polls. More disturbing than the actual polls versus his competition is the fact that fully 51% of those polled do not consider Dodd honest and trustworthy.

What happens to individuals faced with a potential death sentence? Come to Jesus. Faced with the prospect of death, literally or professionally, individuals often will undertake drastic changes in appearance and demeanor in an attempt to stave off that deep, dark descent. In that light, I am never amazed by actions, statements, and positions put forth by politicians.

What is Chris Dodd’s epiphany? Dodd clearly smells the wrath of the American populace toward Washington and Wall Street. Few politicians have been more closely linked with these two worlds than Senator Chris Dodd. After a year’s worth of debate and discussion on financial regulatory reform, Dodd is now proposing the most sweeping and all encompassing overhaul across the entire financial industry. Is this a Hail Mary pass in an attempt to pull victory from the jaws of political defeat? The American Banker provides a wide angled view of Dodd’s desperation pass in writing, Dodd Goes for Broke with Tough Reform Bill:

A draft version of his bill introduced on Tuesday was so far-reaching it would pick a fight with virtually every entrenched interest involved in the debate, including community banks, large financial institutions, the Obama administration, House Democrats, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. and the Federal Reserve Board.


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