Thursday, September 18, 2008

Boiler Room

"That was your homework—to watch Boiler Room."—Lisa Taylor, Ameriquest loan agent, quoted in the Los Angeles Times, February 4, 2005
Yeah, that plan to put all our Social Security money into Wall Street sure looks like a winner from this end, don't it?

Dean Starkman explains the mortgage meltdown as clearly as I've seen it done.

"This American Life" did a great show in this back in May. I listened to the podcast while waiting for Freddie to finish soccer practice, and by the end of it I was a wiser -- if exponentially sadder -- man.


Smashed said...

Hi Neddie,

Welcome back. Fine mess we've got going on, now, ain't it? I hear we're going to buy Ford, next!

Looking forward to some more regular posting.


Will Divide said...

Here's a related, though more trenchant x-ray.

The problem I have with such CRJ thumbsuckers is that, though fundamentally correct, they ignore the fact that the biz press is mainly an arm of large financial interests, linked to advertisers, which have a broad philosophical and practical stake in promoting issues and causes dear to the US Chamber of Commerce.

In other words, less-than-thorough exams of financial hoo-haws is a feature, not a bug.

JC said...

I think Will Divide is right on point, at least insofar as we are talking about Forbes, Fortune and the like. The same goes for electronic media. The cable business news media people are just cheerleaders. But is CJR really comparable to these other outlets? I'm not sure if I would categorize CJR as business press. They may have other conflicting interests with respect to media, or certain legal/constitutional issues, but why would that be the case with financial services?

JC said...

Dear Mr. Divide:

I apologize for misunderstanding your comment. I was at the office when I wrote my initial comment, so I did not then have time to read the linked CJR article. I have now read the article, and see your comment in its proper context. You were not suggesting, as I incorrectly believed at first, that CJR is part of the business press.

Devil's Rancher said...

I did some quick back-of-the -envelope math on the AIG bailo... erm, "loan," the other day -- I'm hoping for at least 12.5% interest, since it's sub-prime, right? Let's see -- figure roughly 100 million taxpayers, 850 dollars each -- carry the one -- I'll get $106.00 in interest per year, right? Right? I'll just sit right here and wait for those checks to roll in...

skeleton69 said...

Actually, first you should watch the movie Wall Street. Oh, wait, you can watch them both at the same time because Boiler Room actually has a scene in which they watch Wall Street and quote it. And heck, just for kicks, you can watch these guys watch and quote the Boiler Room scene in which they watch and quote Wall Street.