Posts Tagged ‘Financial crisis’
One might express the exceedingly low probability that one might agree (that, say, Adam Sandler is the artistic and comedic rival of Buster Keaton) in a variety of ways. Here in the U.S., it might be “when pigs fly” or “when Hell freezes over”. Now, thanks to the good folks at Nautilus, one can answer with the appropriately idiomatic expression of improbability all over the world. Just click the image above…
As we substitute hyperbole for hyperventilation, we might recall that it was on this date in 2008 that Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, setting off the worst financial crisis since the nineteen-thirties, a seven-hundred-billion-dollar bank bailout, and a painful recession. On this dark anniversary, John Cassidy asks, “What Has Changed Since Lehman Failed?” James Kwak answers, “5 Years Later, We’ve Learned Nothing From The Financial Crisis. And for a really deep dive, leap in here.
More bracing bank notes at Occupy George.
As we remember that four out of five U.S. bills are contaminated with cocaine, we might also recall that it was on this date in 1901 that a “get-away car” was used for the first time– by bandits fleeing after the robbery of a Paris shop.
1901 Darracq Type C Tonneau (source)
Your correspondent is an admirer of the stylings of Matt Taibbi; consider, e.g., “The Great Bubble Machine,” wherein Taibbi compares Goldman Sachs to “a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.”
So one can imagine the delight of discovering that, thanks to New York Magazine, one can play along with the Master:
Rolling Stone‘s Matt Taibbi… is perhaps best known for is his willingness to say Bad Things about Important People in a Colorful Way. This talent is on copious display in his new book, Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America, which is ostensibly about how America is becoming “a vast ghetto in which all of us … are being bled dry by a relatively tiny oligarchy of extremely clever financial criminals and their castrato henchmen in government” but mostly serves as a 252-page delivery mechanism for ad hominem insults*… we’ve put together a quiz using some of his most vivid descriptions of public figures. See how many you can figure out!
It’s a particularly-challenging game in that so many of the questions have several answers that could easily be correct. An example:
* New York’s opinion, not your correspondent’s (though the insults are in fact epic)…
As we Question Authority, we might recall that it was on this date in 2005 that Kenny G, Don Henley, Stevie Nicks, and Tom Petty performed at the Rainbow Room on a bill topped by Aerosmith and 50 Cent for a private bat mitzvah. The doting dad who sprang for the lavish coming-of-age-fest (at which, in addition to the entertainment, guests were treated to gift bags containing over $1,000 of personal electronics) was defense contractor David H. Brooks, CEO of DHB Industries, a Long Island company that manufactured body armor for the United States military.
Two years after the lavish event, Brooks was served with a 71-page federal indictment featuring charges of insider trading, tax evasion and raiding his company’s coffers for personal gain– including for the $10 million he used to pay for his daughter’s soiree. Other questionable items charged to the company (thus, via cost-plus contracts, to the Government): pornographic videos for his son, plastic surgery for his wife, a burial plot for his mother, prostitutes for his employees– and, for himself, a $100,000 American-flag belt buckle encrusted with rubies, sapphires and diamonds.
Steven Tyler singing to Our Miss Brooks at her Bat Mitzvah (source)
“27 Visualizations and Infographics to Understand the Financial Crisis” (including a few that will be recognizable to readers of these missives or of Scenarios and Strategy)…
As we begin to get it, we might spare a consoling thought for that pioneer of guerilla marketing Honore de Balzac, who, on this date in 1842, opened his play Les Ressources de Quinola to an empty house… Hoping to create “buzz” for the play, Balzac (the poster boy of over-achievers, who worked 14-16 hour shifts, propelled by a reported 50 cups of coffee a day) had started, then encouraged, the rumor that tickets were sold out. Unfortunately for him, his fans took the news at face value and stayed home.