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Friday, October 24, 2008


Today's Buggy Topic

At Carpe Diem, a good econ blog run by Prof. Mark Perry of the University of Michigan --- Perry a libertarian; prof bug not --- prof bug left a lengthy commentary yesterday about the confessions of failure set out by three libertarian enthusiasts, all with past or present posts of great power in the public sphere: Alan Greenspan, our former Federal Reserve chief; John Snow, Bush-W's Secretary of the Treasury from 2003 untili the summer of 2006; and Chris Cox, the head of the SEC since 2005.

Their Confessions 

Each testified at length to the House Oversight Comittee, and each admitted that their beliefs that free financial markets would be self-regulating were misguided or just flatly wrong.  John Snow now wants not just to regulate them anew and extend regulatory oversight to the derivatives and other innovative, unregulated markets --- all policies that would reverse the Reagan-Bush Sr-Clinton-Bush-W initiatives undertaken since 1980 --- but, additionally, wants to have a nationally centralized regulatory head . . . something, presumably, like what happened after 9/11 that led to the creation of Homeland Security.  Only, it seems, with even more control over the sprawling number of uncoordinated regulatory agencies the federal government has at its disposal.

A Second Buggy Commentary

After prof bug left a lengthy set of comments about these confessions by former true-believing libertarians, he was challenged to list the kinds of financial deregulations that he, prof bug, had been referring to.  A long list, systematically analyzed, was the buggy response.

Click here for the Carpe Diem thread.