Ransom Note Interview

Following my post Thursday morning regarding a potential massive financial/macroeconomic heist – let’s call it the ransom note (“give us all your money, and you can have your economy back”) – Adam Davidson had the great idea of interviewing the author.

We did so Thursday afternoon as part of a NPR Planet Money podcast that we co-hosted and, if all goes well, you can hear the results Friday afternoon.  I tried to convey the tone (and in one case, the precise content) of your comments in the discussion.  And the author …  well, listen for yourselves and tell me what you think – you can post comments here or at Planet Money.

10 thoughts on “Ransom Note Interview

  1. Wow, thank you for using my quote. Although, truth be told, I do rant and rave on occasion.

    The question is not whether we are all going to pay a price for this disaster. Of course we are. And as a taxpayer, I accept that… Provided certain other people pay ahead of me.

    In the discussion of any bail-out or even nationalization proposal, my first question is pretty simple: Are the unsecured creditors of the banks going to be made whole? (Follow-ups: If so, does that mean the debt of every major financial institution is de facto backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S.? Is that a good idea?)

    What is the preferred answer to my question in Mr. LaVorgna’s view, I wonder? What is it in yours, Prof. Johnson?

  2. As a taxpayer, I would like to see the banking industry reformed with the price I paid, which is not implied in Mr LaVorgna’s proposal.

  3. I don’t listen to NPR for a lot of good reasons.

    Adam Davidson might be a friend of sorts, but he did nothing to clarify the HUGE gap separating the LaVorgna and Simon positions. Granted, it was a non-adversarial phone call, but Davidson was all about a)divorcing “Money Planet” from the position Simon was taking; and b)concocting a superficial “consensus” between his guests (on the inevitability of pain), effectively concealing the profound differences between oligarchic and democratic resolutions of the banking issue.

    Beware of NPR! They are up to their eyeballs in the surplus wealth of the oligarchy, channeled through its various foundations…

  4. The last act for control of the economies of the world and thus the world, is upon us. One only has to read the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion. Protocol 20, paragraph 20. I am not antisemite, they are not Jews. The world does not have a chance with them in contol.The future of America can be seen in the Gaza of today. There will be no mercy,and yes they will destroy everything if they don’t get their way.

  5. Revolutionary Road:
    Easy there, fella. There are many other people to beware of ahead of the NPR guys. A conspiracy between “the oligarchy” and NPR is pretty far down the credibility and importance chain.

    I actually think that NPR’s coverage of the crisis has been great and that Adam Davidson, Alex Bloomberg, etc. are doing an amazing job of turning this complex beast into something understandable for the broader population. And the broader population needs to understand this well.

  6. R. Davis, CEO of US Bancorp said in a speech, “…”We were told to take it so that we could help Darwin synthesize the weaker banks and acquire those and put them under different leadership,” he said. “We are not even allowed to mention that. … We were supposed to say the TARP money was used for lending.”

    Here is a link to the article:


    More of a reminded that movement to the oligarchy (monopoly!) banks system was definately in the intention when GIFTING the TARP 1 money–the Stress Test could easily be the “powers that be” using mafia like tactics but disguised by a polite stress test, to push out the honest smaller banks that never did the 40x leverage and that deserve to be buying the rotten pieces of the corrupted entities that are instead surviving with the lifeblood of the US coffers.

    Again i believe that unless a retroactive audit dated Sept. 14, 2008 can be made public of all TARP 1 participants, the public will never have a way of knowing if Lehmans demise, and subsequent US coffers paid through AIG, and TARP 1 money did not go to keeping alive already dead entities (which by the way, only got to the grave by imprudent practices which do not deserve to be rewareded, and much less, given US Coffers which in effect may bankrupt our country!)

  7. RevolutionaryRoad – I completely agree with you that NPR/Adam Davidson conducted the interview rather suspiciously. All the interview did was spread the message that “oh the banks have a gun to our heads”.
    There was no attempt to call LaVorgna’s bluff, nor discuss Mr. Simon’s position. There was no attempt to have a meaningful discussion.

    However in the interest of a meaningful discussion, I read Mr. Lavorgna’s research note. Common sense tells me to use it as toilet paper as the note is hollow with very little credible arguments.

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