Obama to California: Drop Dead

“ Give me regulation, a cup of coffee, and a direct line to my lawyer… and I’ll be making money in an hour.â€� — Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Author of The Black Swan I was lucky enough to spend the first two days of this week listening to some of the smartest people in finance tell me their views on a range of issues at the Buttonwood Gathering in New York City. Speakers included Robert Rubin, former Secretary of the U.S. Treasury; Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel Prize winner; Vikram Pandit, CEO of Citigroup; Henrique de Campos Meirelles, Governor of the Central Bank of Brazil; Robert Shiller of the Case/Shiller Housing Index; Stephen Roach, a deity of research at Morgan Stanley; Joshua Bolten, former White House Chief of Staff; and Mervyn King, Governor of the Bank of England, among the many accomplished luminaries. I was easily the dumbest guy in the room. Certainly the least powerful. These are people that have and will continue to shape global economic policy. They have bailed out banks, countries, and industries for decades. They have propped up profits and consistently sold moral hazard cheap. Advertisement World’s Industrial Supermetal A metal with a name you probably can ‘ t even pronounce…is absolutely essential to a $987 billion-a-year global industry. And today— thanks in part to a massive Chinese campaign to monopolize this most crucial of elements— we’re at the brink of a global deficit. Learn how one microcap mining outfit can make you 2682% as it taps into one of the world’s last major deposits. I took away many things from the Buttonwood Gathering — not the least of which is that bureaucrats and policy makers almost by definition play it safe. If given a choice between saddling future generations with debt, as opposed to seeing the fallout of letting the chips fall today, they will sell out their children every time. Well, not their children… Their children are at a boarding school in Gstaad. The simple fact is that you don’t get to be a leader of government — be it a general or a Fed Chief — without being a politician. Here are some of the many things I gleamed from the conference… Taxes are coming Almost every speaker stated the need to cut services and raise taxes. Some even had comprehensive plans that would keep the Keynesian effects of low taxes for two years, and raise them in 2013 to reduce the debt and deficit. It has become clear that you can’t cut defense without cutting troop levels. The defense budget makes up 24% of U.S. spending, and the vast majority goes to troops and their benefits — not fancy new, high-cost weapons systems. Most of our future debt and liabilities come from Medicare/Medicaid. The myth is that you can cut government waste. The truth is that only 12 percent of the budget is discretionary. There …

Read this article:
Obama to California: Drop Dead

Tags: , , , , , , ,

About the Author ()

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *