A dovetail joint of news, art, science, politics, philosophy & global affairs

Grasping the currency true to our time

"Πάντα ῥεῖ καὶ οὐδὲν μένει"







January 24th
7:56 PM

Soros: situations 'serious and difficult'

Occupy Wall Street “is an inchoate, leaderless manifestation of protest,” but it will grow. It has “put on the agenda issues that the institutional left has failed to put on the agenda for a quarter of a century.” He reaches for analysis, produced by the political blog ThinkProgress.org, that shows how the Occupy movement has pushed issues of unemployment up the agenda of major news organizations, including MSNBC, CNN, and Fox News. It reveals that in one week in July of last year the word “debt” was mentioned more than 7,000 times on major U.S. TV news networks. By October, mentions of the word “debt” had dropped to 398 over the course of a week, while “occupy” was mentioned 1,278 times, “Wall Street” 2,378 times, and “jobs” 2,738 times. You can’t keep a financier away from his metric.  >continue<

October 25th
4:23 PM
Via

politicalprof:

An #Occupy Manifesto.

h/t: CS

September 2nd
7:36 AM
Via

U.S. Is Set to Sue a Dozen Big Banks Over Mortgages

The federal agency that oversees the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is set to file suits against more than a dozen big banks, accusing them of misrepresenting the quality of mortgage securities they assembled and sold at the height of the housing bubble, and seeking billions of dollars in compensation.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency suits, which are expected to be filed in the coming days in federal court, are aimed at Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank, among others, according to three individuals briefed on the matter.

…The suits will argue the banks, which assembled the mortgages and marketed them as securities to investors, failed to perform the due diligence required under securities law and missed evidence that borrowers’ incomes were inflated or falsified. When many borrowers were unable to pay their mortgages, the securities backed by the mortgages quickly lost value.

July 16th
10:22 AM

View from Berlin: The US is Holding the Whole World Hostage

The World from Berlin:

"The Republicans are playing with fire. Nobody can imagine what the repercussions might be if the unthinkable happens and the US is suddenly no longer a safe haven for investors. Anything is possible, from a small, barely perceptible amount of turbulence in the financial markets to a global panic. Congress should think carefully about what it is doing." - Süddeutsche Zeitung

"Democrats and Republicans are so hopelessly embroiled in a religious war that compromise and pragmatism are just dreams from a far-off era of reason. … The influence of the Tea Party movement … can not be overestimated. … The movement sees traditional politics as corrupt and regards Washington as a den of iniquity. … They see the other side as their enemy. Negotiations with the Democrats, whether it’s about appointing a judge or the insolvency of the United States, are only successful if the enemy is defeated. Compromise, they feel, is a sign of weakness and cowardice." - Die Welt

"If it continues like this, the US will be bankrupt within a few days. It would cause a global shockwave like the one which followed the Lehman bankruptcy in 2008, which triggered the worst economic crisis since the war. Except it would be much worse than the Lehman bankruptcy. The political climate in the US has been poisoned to a degree that is hard for us (Germans) to imagine. But we should all fear the consequences." - Bild

The young are absorbed in devices, distractions, wizards and Angry Birds. The old are floating in a sentimental syrup of nationalist mythology, pathologically poised in the pure disjunction of principles from all reality. Some join the latter with the former for a posturing upsurge in Libertarian resignation. A creeping viscosity snares and freezes us all in amber. As Socrates said of Thrasymachus’ strong man, the master nation, caught in an infinity of desire, will become the weakest - will become a slave.

June 18th
10:55 AM

All Hellas Breaking Loose

The latest wave of Hellenic protesters call itself Aganaktismenoi, in the spirit of the Spanish indignados, a broad-based and non-party-political movement…  How did it come to this? How fair is this charge of “Thieves”? Did Greek politicians simply loot their own country, and EU taxpayers, for personal gain? There is truth in this tale, but like any Greek tragedy, there are multiple narratives, none of them pretty.

…But their voices will have to be acknowledged, because the high-decibel volume reflects the scale of the crisis that confronts us all. As Thucydides observed, justice will not come to Athens until those who are not injured are as indignant as those who are.  >continue<