Monday, September 29, 2008

Best Line On the Unfolding US Financial Crisis I Have Read Today

Virtually all of the franchise value of Goldman and Morgan is human capital. The folks at these firms are the most innovative product developers and skilled risk managers that the world has ever seen.

---That is from a new blog with rotating contributors from the Columbia Business School, interesting throughout, more here.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Head You Lose, Tails I Win

Do we want to live in a system where profits are private, but losses are socialised?

--- That is a question posed by U of Chicago professor Luigi Zingales on the appropriateness of the Benanke--Paulson rescue package, more here.

As Reagan Would Have It: Government is the Problem

Many monumental errors and misjudgments contributed to the acute financial turmoil in which we now find ourselves.

Nevertheless, the vast accumulation of toxic mortgage debt that poisoned the global financial system was driven by the aggressive buying of subprime and Alt-A mortgages, and mortgage-backed securities, by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

The poor choices of these two government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) -- and their sponsors in Washington -- are largely to blame for our current mess.

--- That is from an excellent oped by professor Charles Calomiris at the Columbia Business School and his coauthor in WSJ, more here.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Amusing Pair of Sentences on the Unfolding Financial Crisis I Have Read Today

--- From Gary Becker

Despite my deep concerns about having so much greater government control over financial transactions, I have reluctantly concluded that substantial intervention was justified to avoid a major short-term collapse of the financial system that could push the world economy into a major depression.

--- From Richard Posner

In effect, the government's power to repair the crisis that Wall Street created has been delegated to Wall Street.

More here.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

路人甲, Morris and Randy

九七年秋的一個晚上,獨個兒從華盛頓飛往三藩市面試,飛機上暗黃的燈光散落在我手中捧着的小書,淚水滴在橙黄色的書紙上分外動人。 書的名字叫 Tuesday with Morris.




十年後的一個懶洋洋下午,一口氣把 The Last Lecture 讀完,心情平靜。




To me, reading The Last Lecture reminds me of reading one of those pop self-help books written by Anthony Robbins.

Yes, it is tragic that Randy's life was being cut short by a terrible illness. But I also believe it is a fact that a lot of people, in fact I would venture to guess 90 percent of the people, could not achieve what Randy did achieve in his forty some years in existence. Therefore, some people like myself , may not relate to the feelings, messages and lessons relayed in Randy's book as much as when reading Tuesday with Morris. Guess it's because most of us are ordinary folks. Randy's achievement certainly inpires us, but I doubt many of us could attain his level of achievement even if we try our best to take down those brick walls blocking our way.


Some walls are simply made of steel or concrete. Or may be what I wrote above only reflects my weakness, my lack of determination to achieve life goals. Whatever. Just live your life the way you think best for you.