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Red Pill, Blue Pill…

If there’s one thing on which both left and right agree, it is that the Messiah has lost his halo. Yves Smith of Naked Capitalism rips the O-man as a soon-to-be abject failure. For those disappointed progressives whose idea of health care reform was the now-defunct European social-democratic model of universal care, the revelations soon to be coming in foreclosuregate will amount to taking the red pill on the whole notion of moderate reform within the context of the existing political-economy.

Please, if you just want to cheer the home team into the mid-terms — TAKE THE FUCKING BLUE PILL, NOW! PLEASE!

Obama No Longer Bothering to Lie Credibly: Claims Financial Crisis Cost Less Than S&L Crisis

I’m so offended by the latest Obama canard, that the financial crisis of 2007-2008 cost less than 1% of GDP, that I barely know where to begin. Not only does this Administration lie on a routine basis, it doesn’t even bother to tell credible lies. .And this one came directly from the top, not via minions. It’s not that this misrepresentation is earth-shaking, but that it epitomizes why the Obama Administration is well on its way to being an abject failure.

… if you want a better tally of the true costs of the financial crisis, the Bank of England’s Anthony Haldane comes up with much greater damage, precisely because he also considers the costs citizens know all too well, such as painfully high unemployment and drastic state and local government budget cuts. He estimates the cost of the global financial crisis, when you include the biggest item, output losses, at one to five times global GDP. And remember further, because a lot of bad US assets, like mortgage securities and CDOs, were sold overseas, the US did not bear the full costs of the toxic product we created, again undermining Obama’s phony accounting:

….these losses are multiples of the static costs, lying anywhere between one and five times annual GDP. Put in money terms, that is an output loss equivalent to between $60 trillion and $200 trillion for the world economy and between £1.8 trillion and £7.4 trillion for the UK. As Nobel-prize winning physicist Richard Feynman observed, to call these numbers “astronomical” would be to do astronomy a disservice: there are only hundreds of billions of stars in the galaxy. “Economical” might be a better description.

It is clear that banks would not have deep enough pockets to foot this bill. Assuming that a crisis occurs every 20 years, the systemic levy needed to recoup these crisis costs would be in excess of $1.5 trillion per year. The total market capitalisation of the largest global banks is currently only around $1.2 trillion. Fully internalising the output costs of financial crises would risk putting banks on the same trajectory as the dinosaurs, with the levy playing the role of the meteorite.

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