and then one day

Posted on Sunday 28 September 2008

How do such things happen all at once? Before September 15th, I didn’t know all of this was going to happen. I’m not a Stock Market follower, but I do read the news. Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers, A.I.G., Washington Mutual weren’t in my sights as going into oblivion in a short couple of weeks. $700 Billion buyout? Where did that come from overnight? Obviously, these things have been incubating for a very long time, but they seemed to fall like dominos in athe moment of a single breath.

At the risk of overly using a metaphor, it’s the way addiction works. The addict says to himself, I don’t have to stop right now. I can always stop before I "get addicted," "get in real trouble," "my health goes bad," "my wife leaves," etc. And then one day, in the twinkling of an eye, it happens. Karen Carpenter dies from low potassium. The drunk has a fatal wreck, or comes home to find an empty house. The put-it-off rationalization just runs out of juice.

In the financial world, for a while, these Institutions have been in the position of not having the assets to cover their liabilities when the housing downturn and the failed mortgages began to call on their resources. So they borrow short term. One day, their lenders smell a rat, and say "no" "… and down will come baby, cradle and all." I guess it’s like that bridge in Minneapolis. It was in trouble for a long time, and then one day some car put just the right amount of strain on a key bolt, and "thar she blows."

What regulation of financial markets meant was that they couldn’t operate so close to the wire. They had to have assets to back up their loans, their insurance, their accounts. What deregulation meant was that they could play it as close to the wire as they wanted, so long as they could meet their obligations. And they got used to it – living on credit themselves while purporting to manage ours.

And then one day
    September 28, 2008 | 9:46 PM

    I think we’re just about to see a “then one day” in the campaign. The polls are poised to really take off for Obama, especially in electoral votes, tracking now at 325.5 to 212.5 as most of the swing states are now leaning toward Obama — with CO, MI, PA, VA, OH, NV, NM in his “likely” column, and even FL and IN leaning toward him.

    His assured, mature performance in the debate gave a lot of undecideds what they needed to overcome their uneasiness about him. And McCain looks nuttier by the week.

    And, even though the Stockton, CA newspaper may not be terribly influential, it’s highly significant that they’ve just endorsed Obama because it’s the first time they have endorsed a Democrat in 72 years, since FDR !!!!!!!

    September 29, 2008 | 9:33 AM

    That reminds me. I need to contact my dad and talk to him about why he shouldn’t vote Republican this year. He’s a tough case.
    I really hope that CO (my state) goes Blue this year. I really do.

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