Carlyle and Great Depression Too
By: Mark W Adams

[Updated at American Street]

"Blackhedd" at Red State's braintrust picked up on news of the imminent colapse of the publicly traded Carlyle Capital Corporation, the speculative financial arm of the Carlyle Group formed last July (as far as I can tell, solely) to buy a slice of the Big Shitpile, possibly in anticipation of some kind of bailout or other corporate welfare mechanism.

Partake of the wisdom of a radical freemarketeer's gift for understatement:
Is there an appropriate policy response to this? I wish you hadn't asked.

The free-market approach is to let the chips fall where they may. We will probably end up with a massive de-leveraging of the financial system, and a long slow period of balance-sheet rebuilding. Ultimately, we'll get a stronger system out of it. But the Great Depression wasn't any fun, and Great Depression II won't be any fun either.

The aggressive-policy response is even worse. The taxpayers could end up owning several trillion dollars' worth of home mortgages. How are you going to fund that? And more importantly, what would the price be?
Not even a hint that a tighter regulator scheme might help shorten the duration or prevent a recurrence, even in this mythical future where we "get a stronger system out of it."

Flash: Nothing could possibly be worse than a second Great Depression, you moron. Don't even go there unless you already cornered the market on soup kitchen franchises.

Wasn't greater scrutiny of financial institutions a by-product of the Great Depression that lead to America's robust economy all the baby-boomers expected to last 4-eva? What on earth is going to prevent an even bigger shitpile from forming out of the ashes of the current financial meltdown without a tighter regulatory scheme, something like the one systematically dismantled under Reagan/Bush and continued to evaporate with even more enthusiasm under the Cheney administration's disaster capitalists?

No doubt some of the free market purists must have thought Treasury Secretary Paulson sounded like one of FDR's New Dealers with his downright Marxist talk of imposing new rules for mortgage brokers and credit agencies today.

No doubt Paulson's plan is window dressing, closing the barn door too late. But I wouldn't be surprised that like Admiral Fallon, Paulson might be persuaded to enter early retirement for suggesting the Friedman Fundamentalists might have been a tad negligent here.

Chris in Paris @ Americablog
A small dose of regulation could have lessened the blow for everyone but no, the Republicans would have none of it. Where are all of those big talkers now that their self-regulation ideas are dragging down everyone? Notice how quiet they have become?
Only Redstate's Blackhedd seems to have anything to say today on behalf of Right Wing Blogistan. And he's just daft. The rest of the regurgitators are getting nothing but static on their squack boxes since everyone who usually feeds them talking points is either out on a ledge or setting up new dummy corporations in Paraguay.

Blackhedd warns "Great Depression II" looms, yet without so much as an attempt to think through alternative ways of cushioning the blow, government intervetion or even a wholesale bailout -- he determines that doing anything at all is too fraught with uncertainty and scary-bad because, well ... it has to be ... cuz Teh Gubmint is always bad ... Mmmkay ... and taxpayers shouldn't be responsible for making society better, or keeping it from getting worse, or spreading risk around so the supply-sider created monsters don't flush us all down the tubes with the collapse of their Ponzie scheme.

Only a kool-aide drinking, fundamentalist libertarian deregulator would think anything could possibly be worse than the financial death spiral the words, "Great Depression II" bring to mind *if* it might mean taxes get raised or corporations might be forced to work in the public interest.

"Conservative" has always been code for greedy cheap old bastards that want to take it all with them when they croak, and it always will be.