Rolf Englund IntCom internetional
Some people were apparently shocked to learn that gambling was occurring at Rick's Cabaret
Is there time to avert a Minsky meltdown?
The Street sliced and diced this financial toxic waste into a variety of esoteric securities, making a nice markup when it sold them and generating a continuing stream of profits when it made markets in them.
Somehow analysts at credit-rating agencies, looking at computerized scenarios rather than at the real world, decided that the bulk of the securities backed by these trashy loans could be rated triple-A.
What we saw this summer is something we've seen before and will undoubtedly see again.
Of course, the most severe sell-off occurred in the structured credit space this summer. Anything mortgage related basically turned into toxic waste, or was finally recognized as the toxic waste it had always been. It remains to be seen what the recoveries will be on mortgage-related paper, but they likely won't be meaningful. But investors did not stop there. Many of the investors who had purchased the liabilities of Collateralized Debt Obligations (CDOs) holding mortgages also purchased CDOs holding corporate loans, known as Collateralized Loan Obligations or CLOs.
In many cases, the ultimate funders of CLOs were the Special Investment Vehicles, or SIVs, we are reading about having to be bailed out today. It beggars reason to think that we are again seeing the markets being urged by government regulators to bail out private enterprises run by multimillionaires that were leveraged 100 to 1.
While the front pages of the financial press were filled with reports about record-sized LBOs, journalists missed the real story - that these large transactions were being financed by a huge shadow economy that was not recorded on the books of any financial institution, was as leveraged as Long Term Capital Management was ten years ago, and was operating completely beyond the reach of regulators.
"Round up the usual suspects"
1942 the Nazi occupation of France. Refugees must take a long and torturers rout through Casablanca on their way to America; there "Everybody comes to Rick's." Rick's is a nightclub and a way station for a chance to get to America.
".......the Battle of France is over. The Battle of Britain is about to begin, upon this battle depends the survival of Christian civilization, upon it depends our own British life and the long continuity of our institution and our Empire."