David Seaton's News LinksIgor IgorevichThe worst financial crisis since the Great Depression is claiming another casualty: American-style capitalism. Since the 1930s, U.S. banks were the flagships of American economic might, and emulation by other nations of the fiercely free-market financial system in the United States was expected and encouraged. But the market turmoil that is draining the nation's wealth and has upended Wall Street now threatens to put the banks at the heart of the U.S. financial system at least partly in the hands of the government. The Bush administration is considering a partial nationalization of some banks, buying up a portion of their shares to shore them up and restore confidence as part of the $700 billion government bailout. The notion of government ownership in the financial sector, even as a minority stakeholder, goes against what market purists say they see as the foundation of the American system. Washington Post
The British and American plans, though far from identical, have two common elements according to officials: injection of government money into banks in return for ownership stakes and guarantees of repayment for various types of loans. (...) In the rescue law passed a week ago, Congress stipulated that the Treasury must strictly limit the pay of executives in banks to which it adds capital — including provisions that ban golden parachutes and that direct the government to recover bonuses based on stated earnings that prove inaccurate. Britain’s plan also hinged on the willingness of several of the largest banks — Royal Bank of Scotland, Barclays and HSBC Holdings, among them — to sell preferred shares to the government. It is not clear, administration officials said, that the largest American banks would agree to this, particularly given the restrictions on executive pay. New York Times
Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said political leaders are discussing the idea of closing the world's financial markets while they ``rewrite the rules of international finance.'' ``The idea of suspending the markets for the time it takes to rewrite the rules is being discussed,'' Berlusconi said (...). A solution to the financial crisis ``can't just be for one country, or even just for Europe, but global.'' Bloomberg
The big lesson is that the west can no longer assume the global order will be remade in its own image. For more than two centuries, the US and Europe have exercised an effortless economic, political and cultural hegemony. That era is ending. Philip Stephens - Financial Times
Well, it appears that George W. Bush is going to nationalize American banks...
My inner Lenin is having the shivering fits.
My inner Ilyich is in stitches.
I sure never thought that it would be Dubya that would end up building Socialism.
Isn't the world a wonderful place?
Isn't life fun?
What other planet can offer such horse shit? DS