Print Story Q: What's going on in the economy?
Money
By theboz (Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 05:45:04 AM EST) (all tags)
We've been without power since Friday, and when we got it back I didn't feel like watching the national news.  However, from the little bits I've heard, it sounds like we're in the middle of a huge financial meltdown with global implications.


So what's the deal?  Are we all going to lose our retirements and accounts?  Why did the government buy AIG, making defacto nationalized health care for people that have AIG medical insurance?
< Order of Service | What to do, what to do >
Q: What's going on in the economy? | 45 comments (45 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Dooooomed by Phage (4.00 / 1) #1 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 05:47:47 AM EST
</dulltrev> Got any farming skillz ?

Actually yes by theboz (2.00 / 0) #8 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:43:41 AM EST
More along the lines of dealing with livestock than farming, but hey, we all like to eat meat.

- - - - -
That's what I always say about you, boz, you have a good memory for random facts about pussy. -- joh3n
[ Parent ]
I'm looking up by Phage (2.00 / 0) #10 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:44:39 AM EST
How to brew your own as we speak.

[ Parent ]
Hmm, beef ale! by georgeha (4.00 / 1) #11 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:46:41 AM EST



[ Parent ]
<guffaw> by Phage (2.00 / 0) #14 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:52:37 AM EST
Damn you sir. Now I must wipe my monitor.

[ Parent ]
The economy is fundamentally sound by georgeha (4.00 / 1) #2 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 05:49:48 AM EST
and John McCain has Phil Gramm on board, so no worries. My 401k dropped $2400 on Monday, I haven't checked to see what it lost on Wednesday.


It's going up a little by theboz (2.00 / 0) #9 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:44:08 AM EST
Still, I am not going to look at my 401K for a while.

- - - - -
That's what I always say about you, boz, you have a good memory for random facts about pussy. -- joh3n
[ Parent ]
I don't want to by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #12 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:47:31 AM EST
but I'm getting ready to take a 401k loan to get rid of more henious CC debt.


[ Parent ]
You have a retirement account? by greyrat (4.00 / 3) #3 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 05:53:07 AM EST
My retirement plan involves a length of rope and a rafter in the basement. Right now, I can send the kids to school for one more year.

Don't worry! by ucblockhead (4.00 / 1) #4 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:25:58 AM EST
Your retirement is safe! We'll vote in someone who supports all the policies that have been in force for the last eight years...that will change everything!

I mean, truly a man with such experience with the banking industry can fix bank collapses.
---
[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman

Have you seen the new McCain commercial? by nightflameblue (4.00 / 1) #5 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:38:59 AM EST
There's a new one that claims voting in Barrack Obama would be "more of the same" and that McCain can lead this country to real change.

It's almost like he looked at Obama's campaign and decided it sounded pretty good.



[ Parent ]
Obama should be all over this by theboz (4.00 / 1) #7 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:43:13 AM EST
McCain clearly started ripping off Obama long before the conventions, and now it's even more obvious.  The next thing you know, he's going to be calling himself BaJohn McBama.

- - - - -
That's what I always say about you, boz, you have a good memory for random facts about pussy. -- joh3n
[ Parent ]
People were complaining about FEMA at work today by theboz (2.00 / 0) #21 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 08:45:44 AM EST
Republicans whining about how bad FEMA has responded would be amusing if people weren't suffering because of what Bush's FEMA has done.

There are many anecdotes I can give, but here's a new one I heard today.  FEMA apparently went to the local hardware and sporting goods stores when they started opening up in order to buy all the batteries, flashlights, etc.  Not to hand out to people for free, but to use for their own people.  Why FEMA couldn't even come here prepared with flashlights is amazing.  It's true that they are doing a "heckuva job!" just like Michael Brown.

Anyway, the people that vote for McCain are simply asking for more FEMA failures, more failures in the economy, and for life to continue to get worse.  I can see why someone like MNS would vote for him as it's part of his plan, but I don't know why other people would.


- - - - -
That's what I always say about you, boz, you have a good memory for random facts about pussy. -- joh3n
[ Parent ]
don't forget by StackyMcRacky (2.00 / 0) #35 Fri Sep 19, 2008 at 06:35:14 AM EST
our own Air National Guard 1st responders didn't bring enough food for their own group.  One of the congressmen put out a "anybody on the west side with extra food..." call to feed the ANG.   How dumb is that?

[ Parent ]
I'm not worried. by ObviousTroll (2.00 / 0) #23 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 09:52:27 AM EST
All my money is in government-backed mortgage bonds.


Thought for the day: Some people are like slinkies - Not really good for anything but they bring a smile to your face when you push them down the stairs.
[ Parent ]
We may very well be by lm (2.00 / 0) #6 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:39:50 AM EST
But I don't think so. It's just the correction that some people have been waiting for for quite some time.

Don't get me wrong, it's bad. But compare the volume of loss as a percentage to the Black Friday (or whatever day of the week it was) of the big drop in the late eighties and to the beginning of the Great Depression. It's not even close yet.

Hopefully we'll see a massive public works project in the US in the next few years. The good Lord knows our infrastructure needs it.




There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
As much as I agree with you by MartiniPhilosopher (2.00 / 0) #18 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 07:43:13 AM EST
I have my doubts as to it actually happening. A lot of what allowed the WPA and its cousins to exist was the desire to see the kinds of infrastructure they went around putting up. The country needed electricity nationwide. The country needed an interstate road system. I'll go so far as to say the country needed the national parks on the basis that with all of the work being done, people needed a cheap destination to have a vacation in.

The only thing one could make the argument for needing these days is an upgrade of the nation's communication infrastructure. And that would be a hard thing to get done, considering the entrenched position most of the telecoms have pushed themselves into both legally and financially.

Yes the roads and bridges need work. I70 across Missouri needed to be four lanes each way ten years ago. But I have a feeling that until everything, everywhere goes the way of the I35 bridge in Minnesota getting political support for that is going to be as tough as getting entitlement program reform done.

Whenever I hear one of those aforementioned douche bags pontificate about how dangerous [...] videogames are I get a little stabby. --Wil Wheaton.

[ Parent ]
I agree that there isn't as much public support by lm (2.00 / 0) #19 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 07:56:51 AM EST
I think that will change as the correction continues, more jobs are lost and people begin to mentally equate public works with putting food on the table. 

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Personally, I'm really pissed off. by lb008d (2.00 / 0) #13 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 06:50:59 AM EST
It seems you need to be rich to get government assistance.


SSDD by lm (4.00 / 1) #15 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 07:06:00 AM EST
Wasn't it Rousseau that argued that government itself is an invention by the rich to fool the poor into defending the right of the rich to own stuff?

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Yeah. by nightflameblue (4.00 / 1) #16 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 07:07:01 AM EST
It is rather neat to see the people on the news every morning whining about losing three billion dollars and only getting eight million from the government to help them out. Poor babies. How will they live on only eight million?

[ Parent ]
Less of a 401k by blixco (4.00 / 1) #17 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 07:16:14 AM EST
but the market isn't a short-term device, and that's the problem: everyone thinks the market is a short-term device.

---------------------------------
"You bring the weasel, I'll bring the whiskey." - kellnerin
I saw by dev trash (2.00 / 0) #29 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 04:20:59 PM EST
a letter to the editor this week about a guy who was PISSED that his 401k is losing so much money.  He said he was 5 years from retirement and was wondering what he was going to do now.  Well what the hell was he in the stock market 5 years from retirement????  I know why, he was greedy.

--
Click
[ Parent ]
Uh. . . by nightflameblue (2.00 / 0) #32 Fri Sep 19, 2008 at 05:16:16 AM EST
what's your choice if you're working at a company that provides a stock-based 401k? I know at our company we get to decide whether to take high risk or low risk stock on our 401k, but we sure as shit don't get to say "stick it in a savings account." There is no zero risk option.

[ Parent ]
No combination or bond heavy funds? by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #33 Fri Sep 19, 2008 at 06:02:02 AM EST
They can at least offer that, if they don't offer access to external funds.


[ Parent ]
Nope. by nightflameblue (2.00 / 0) #34 Fri Sep 19, 2008 at 06:34:09 AM EST
It's all stock, all the time, and fuck you if you have other ideas. It's been addressed several times, and every time the answer is the same. "The stock market is rock solid and you will never loose your money there."

I wonder if they'll still try to sell that line this year?



[ Parent ]
there is always a choice by dev trash (2.00 / 0) #37 Fri Sep 19, 2008 at 04:15:39 PM EST
don't contribute, or contribute as little as possible and fund your own.

--
Click
[ Parent ]
Company matches your contribution. by nightflameblue (2.00 / 0) #38 Sat Sep 20, 2008 at 05:32:48 PM EST
Now, sure, you COULD gamble with your money elsewhere. But it's a lot more fun to gamble with your money *2.

[ Parent ]
oh yeah forgot that by dev trash (2.00 / 0) #39 Sat Sep 20, 2008 at 06:06:26 PM EST
since my company actually doesn't match, at all.  I know, wtf.

--
Click
[ Parent ]
Huh. by nightflameblue (2.00 / 0) #40 Sun Sep 21, 2008 at 02:53:45 PM EST
That's. . .odd.

[ Parent ]
it's not so bad by dev trash (2.00 / 0) #41 Sun Sep 21, 2008 at 05:29:50 PM EST
we get a ham at christmas

--
Click
[ Parent ]
Ah, the true sign that management doesn't get it. by nightflameblue (2.00 / 0) #42 Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 01:40:54 AM EST
They spend fifty dollars a piece on a ham that would cost twenty at the grocery store and hand that to employees instead of folding it into a company wide employee bonus. BRILLIANT!

[ Parent ]
it's better than that! by dev trash (2.00 / 0) #44 Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 03:37:25 PM EST
Last year they promised us a ham not from a grocery but from some outfit, PLUS a cutting board.  i wanted the cutting board more than the ham.

Like the previous years they allowed us to pick one of three items, the ham and two trinkets.  Well everyone picked a ham, duh it had a sweet cutting board, something that would last past the holidays be you know useful.

About 6 days before the hams were to be delivered there was some 'issue' with the supplier, but no fear, they would go to the grocery and get us bigger hams.  But no fricken cutting boards.

--
Click

[ Parent ]
That all sounds about right. by nightflameblue (2.00 / 0) #45 Tue Sep 23, 2008 at 03:01:22 AM EST
Oversell, underdeliver, save money.

[ Parent ]
Capitalism has ended by herbert (4.00 / 1) #20 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 08:09:16 AM EST
Dictatorship of the proletariat is next I believe.

FDIC by MillMan (2.00 / 0) #22 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 09:25:12 AM EST
Has around $20 billion to cover bank failures, which won't be enough. Since the ultra-rich are getting bailed out, I think we'll get some support in the form of more funding for the FDIC. I don't think the powers that be have the confidence that we won't burn them all at the stake if they don't.

When I'm imprisoned as an enemy combatant, will you blog about it?

AIG by aphrael (2.00 / 0) #24 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 10:06:10 AM EST
I've heard two explanations for this, both of which I buy.

Explanation the First:

(a) one of the problems at the moment is that, as a result of the way mortgages were repackaged into collateralized debt obligations, nobody involved in that market has any clue how exposed they are, and how much their 'assets' are worth.
(b) but many institutions have been preventing a panic by explaining that their assets are insured.
(c) by AIG.
(d) so if AIG falls, then these institutions are no longer insured, meaning people panic at them, and they risk collapse.

Explanation the Second:

lots of financial institutions have loaned AIG lots of money. if it falls, that debt may be no good.


If television is a babysitter, the internet is a drunk librarian who won't shut up.
The think that blew my mind was how by ObviousTroll (2.00 / 0) #25 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 10:30:16 AM EST
AIG's mortgage securities were insured by... AIG. That's just insane.



Thought for the day: Some people are like slinkies - Not really good for anything but they bring a smile to your face when you push them down the stairs.
[ Parent ]
wow by aphrael (2.00 / 0) #27 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 12:31:27 PM EST
not quite as insane as it sounds by lm (2.00 / 0) #31 Fri Sep 19, 2008 at 02:32:25 AM EST
AIG is a conglomerate of a huge number of different companies (a talking head on PBS last night said over 70) owned by a parent corporation. That AIG1 is insured by AIG52 is not all that unreasonable.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
glass - steagly by garlic (2.00 / 0) #26 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 12:30:32 PM EST


[ Parent ]
Glass-Steagall by garlic (2.00 / 0) #28 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 12:31:46 PM EST


[ Parent ]
Long story short.. by Driusan (2.00 / 0) #30 Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 09:36:36 PM EST
You're in the middle of a huge financial meltdown with global implications. You're going to lose your retirements, so the government bought AIG.

--
Vive le Montréal libre.
well, gave them a large loan. by gzt (2.00 / 0) #36 Fri Sep 19, 2008 at 08:31:00 AM EST
What the government looks like it is going to buy: everybody's bad debt. Now, mind you, YOU'RE still in debtor's gaol, but now it's the government that owns your soul rather than Chase.

[ Parent ]
It is just a rumor by duxup (2.00 / 0) #43 Mon Sep 22, 2008 at 09:16:21 AM EST
n/t

____
Q: What's going on in the economy? | 45 comments (45 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback