Assorted Links (5/25/2010)

Here’s a list of articles that I have been reading lately:

Hard Sell –


“John Fund writes in The Wall Street Journal that ObamaCare appears more unpopular than ever.”

Chronicle of a Currency Crisis Foretold – Project Syndicate


“The crisis in Greece and the problems in Spain and Portugal have exposed the euro’s inherent flaws, and no amount of financial guarantees – much less rhetorical reassurance – from the EU can paper them over. While the euro is likely to survive the current crisis, not all of the eurozone’s current members may be there a year from now.”

Progressives, Jim Crow, and Selective Amnesia


“The Rand Paul episode reveals a drastic misreading of history and of the government’s role in ending racial discrimination in this nation.”

America’s New Jobs Bill –


“The Wall Street Journal dissects this week’s stimulus bill.”

Money Market Funds Missing from the Senate Bill – Regulating Wall Street


“Money market funds are the stepchild of finance. Even though they manage more than $4 trillion in assets, you won’t find them in the Senate’s financial reform bill from last Thursday. Is this justified?”    

Not just their Big Fat Greek Funeral – Mark Steyn –


“As lazy, feckless, corrupt and violent as Greece undoubtedly is, it’s not that untypical…”

That’s Rich at Steven Landsburg | The Big Questions: Tackling the Problems of Philosophy with Ideas.


“It’s now crystal clear what the Tea Party stands for, says Frank Rich midway through a column that makes it crystal clear what Frank Rich stands for, and it isn’t pretty.”    

Stimulus Surprise: Companies Retrench When Government Spends – HBS Working Knowledge

Source: “New research from Harvard Business School suggests that federal spending in states appears to cause local businesses to cut back rather than grow. A conversation with Joshua Coval.”

Game Theory TV – Freakonomics Blog –

Source: “Game theory lessons on YouTube.”

Review & Outlook: The New Lords of Finance –

Source: “The Wall Street Journal editorial page says that Congress’s financial reform is a marriage of Big Finance and Big Government.”

Roberts on the Crisis | EconTalk | Library of Economics and Liberty


“Russ Roberts, host of EconTalk, discusses his paper, “Gambling with Other People’s Money: How Perverted Incentives Created the Financial Crisis.” Roberts reflects on the past eighteen months of podcasts on the crisis, and then turns to his own take, a narrative that emphasizes the role of government rescues of creditors and the incentives this created for imprudent lending. He also discusses U.S. housing policy, particularly the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and how the government’s implicit guarantee of lenders to the GSE’s interacted with housing policy to increase housing prices. This in turn, Roberts argues, helped create the subprime market, created mainly by private investors. The episode closes with some of Roberts’s doubts about his narrative.”    

Consumer Financial Protection–the Good, the Bad and the Ugly – Regulating Wall Street


“On Thursday the Senate passed its version of the financial reform bill, and the reconciliation process with the previously passed House bill will now begin. What are the implications for consumer protection? The similarities between the two bills in the area of consumer protection and more notable than their differences, but there are some distinctions to keep in mind and some troubling issues common to both bills. Consumer protection is a worthy goal, especially given some of the documented abuses leading up to and during the financial crisis, but bad regulation may be worse than under-regulation.”    

Economic View – Greece May Not Be as Rich as It Looks –


“Europe no longer pretends Greece is wealthy. Now the Continent acts as though Greece will quickly become wealthy enough to pay back ever-growing sums of debt.”