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Showing posts from September 22, 2002
Remora Kurds and ways Christopher Hitchens has, since 9/11, rather fancied himself the Don Quixote of the Left, jousting with the anti-war contingent, rallying the troops around feminism, secularism, and democracy. Well, beyond the posturing natural to Hitchens, there is something to his perception of the anti-war left -- you don't have to look far before you find rather stupid analogies between, say, Saddam Hussein's use of nerve gas and lynchings in the U.S. South. The stupidity resides in the fact that there were mechanisms in the state to operate against the lynching spree -- and eventually, creakily, did. Genocide past neither justifies genocide present nor, necessarily, bars a nation from acting militarily. One can take a stand against any nation acting militarily at all, or one can take a stand against particular military actions, but the dumbest of all stands, LI thinks, is that which requires complete purity of nationhood (perhaps for a thousand years) before a
Remora The flame is on under CFO magazine's 99 CFO of the year --- everybody's favorite, Andrew Fastow! Yes, Enron's man with the plan -- the plan to loot the company's resources for his own benefit -- is edging close to the bonfire of the Vanities currently being lit in a court in Houston. This WP article is clearly a prosecutor's ploy , but it does include one interesting detail for the Enron-maniac: the focus on Braveheart, the deal whereby Enron sold its potential profits to a Canadian bank in order to realize a sum in its books for 2001, coming up with a 100 million dollar profit. This deal is so incredible that it certainly needs to be examined -- and the heads of the execs at the Canadian company that made it need to be examined twice as hard. Only Enron would make a deal selling its potential profit to a third party, in order to mark down an immediate profit. In '99, CFO caught the great man himself explaining his tricks : "When Andrew S.
Remora Notes from all over BW offers a "scourging" of the business press for its lickspittle attitude towards the New Economy boys during the bubble years. Readers of LI have already been here -- of course, they are all secretly sneaking glances at this weblog and ripping us off! The brutes! Isn't it stifling in this cabin? Where's my bundle of ivory... The snakes! The snakes! Uh, forgive us, a touch of that old tropical fever, you know. Anyway, Ciro Scotti winds into a denunciation of the biz press from the very odd angle of Pat Buchanan's rhetoric. Scotti borrows Buchanan's phrase about Bush -- that he is a corporation bellhop. While this is about as nice an image as you can expect on the hustings nowadays, I don't see it as being so insightful that Scotti needs to press it. And though Scotti wishes to come off as suitably tough and disgusted in the column, Mr. Take no prisoners, he actually --- takes no prisoners. That is, he names no n
Remora Trickle Up The conventional wisdom -- which is only shorthand for, the chatter among the governing class -- is that the upcoming election is going to be a Republican fest. The focus, now, is firmly on Iraq, and Bush is the maestro who has put this all together. Well, the governing classes do govern, so one would think that they would know about such things. Elections, after all, are to be manipulated in such a way that there is no disturbance in the well ordered diffusion of power among the people who already have it, and no doubt feel they deserve it. But isn't it possible, LI would like to know -- speaking out of turn, in his best Oliver Twist wants some more gruel tones -- isn't it slightly possible that the populace will look at the events of the past year in terms of their deteriorating economic situation? A story in the WP about the latest data on income and poverty brings up this point. The census bureau reports that income inequality is again on the r