Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Our Hero, Elizabeth Warren
Thanks, James Scurlock (the Morgan Spurlock of debt) who wrote a great piece about why Elizabeth Warren is so awesome. She gets what the real problem is: the financial system was profiting on the backs of American families. We're not going to be able to fix it or prop it up as long as people can't pay off their credit card debt. In fact several rounds of defaults are still looming.
"We can't have a modern economy without solvent banks, but we can't have solvent banks or a functioning economy without solvent families." That such a notion remains controversial is almost mind-numbing."
And that Ms. Warren would be attacked and berated for it by a usually incredibly smart and savvy financial journalist on a podcast, Planet Money, that I listen to every week is kinda bewildering. What I heard NPR's Adam Davidson say last week is that Ms. Warren is improperly imposing her "out of the mainstream" views on a process, the TARP, that is supposed to be led by sober "elder statesmen" (yes, he did say statesMEN--unfortunate choice of phrase). But her ideas should not be out of the mainstream. They are the new mainstream. She belongs to a select group of economic observers who warned that a day of debt reckoning was coming--not with scary voodoo or black swan hocus pocus but in plain, sober, easy-to-understand terms--"the problem is as much a credit crisis as a slide in conditions for average American families."
The Two-Income Trap should be required reading for Tim Geithner and crew.