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From the news this weekend, you'd think the world was in a coma, but I swear I heard ominous bassoon phrases through the night rain... something large groaning out there in the dark. A great churn, coming closer. The world is in a box, tortured with its obsolete ideas about how economies are supposed to run, especially the money part, and the economists are clueless. A case in point: the eminent Vincent Reinhart at the Council of Foreign Relations last week. (Conspiracy theorists just shut your pie-holes): "There are very few debt defaults... there are a whole lot of restructurings. For most of history, default is something the strong declare on the weak when they lose their patience. And if you're members of the same club, you're less likely to lose your patience. Hence you're less likely to default. Greece is in the club." The club he refers to - the Euro money club - is less a jolly fraternal lodge than a funeral insurance association. The latest restructuring for Greece he referred to is a cockamamie perpetual rollover with no redemptions allowed, while Greece has to agree to become more like its neighbor, Albania, in lifestyle - that is, like Borat, minus the joie de vivre. There's a third option that Reinhart ignores: the Greek populace can riot in the streets, toss out their government, install some kind of rump leadership and hoist its middle fingers at the Euro management team, opting out of the club. Why this does not occur to Reinhart (and many other vested poobahs) I can't say, despite the fact that there are many places around the world (especially Europe these days) where the natives are obviously getting restless. Besides, it's not lost on the Greek people that they're being asked to go Albanian for the sake of a dozen banks up in Germany, France, and Holland, not their own country's sacred honor.
"There are very few debt defaults... there are a whole lot of restructurings. For most of history, default is something the strong declare on the weak when they lose their patience. And if you're members of the same club, you're less likely to lose your patience. Hence you're less likely to default. Greece is in the club."
"A fool with a tool is still a fool." - Abraham Verghese
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