Ben, best ancestors would turn you away

I don't comprehend to a declaration they say

They don't see you as I do

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I preference they would try to

I'm confident they'd reason again

If they had a individual same Ben.

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From the Song: Ben

Copyright 1972 Walter Scharf/Don Black

Performed by Michael Jackson

Beautiful words, right? The tune, if you cognise the song, is quite beautiful as very well. The irony, of course, is that Michael Jackson is cantabile this bonny hymn to a RAT. That's right, a large, hairy, dirty, lousy (and aggressive) rat! The tune is the cadenced content for the show of the same language unit.

The "Ben" I wishing to exclaim about, however, is Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board. He is no rat. Quite the contrary, tho' I do not cognise him personally, he exudes, to all external appearance, state and expertise.

The Wall Street Bulls, however, may healed prospect him as a rat. Unlike Alan Greenspan, who inclined (kowtowed, even) to governmental coercion after September 11 and small the Fed Funds Rate aggressively, to buttress up panicky assets markets, Bernanke is, for the utmost part, compliance his sand dry, in direct to find out whether the recent flutter and sub-prime embarrassment is, indeed, a threat to the overall cutback.

Greenspan's whereabouts did, in fact, help to reference a sinking market, as symptomless as to minimize and cut the recession of 2001-2002, retributory weeklong sufficient for the school gush to be replaced by a tangible estate globule. The latter babble was, it seems, nearly entirely a manoeuvre of historically low rates brought to us by Mr. Greenspan. It also was the well of the sub-prime debt fiasco and rapacious disposition practices, which enabled family beside suspect trustiness either to acquisition homes they could not afford, or to use their current homes as "piggy banks" for apparently unmeasurable client outlay sprees. In the interim, these lenders raked in cosmic beginning fees, and the economy hummed, as the inhabitants spent, and dog-tired and fatigued. All the while, the lenders knew (and the borrowers should have well-known) that a day of reckoning awaited; a day on which the worker security interest rates would reset. Those life are upon us now, and almost everyone, it seems, from the sub-prime receiver to the lenders, to the fence monetary fund managers privation Mr. Bernanke, Greenspan's offspring to recognisance them out. Thus far, although beneath inconceivable force per unit area from the Bush Administration and the same business concern and punter groups, it appears that Bernanke may not be so prepared to gambol orb.

Bernanke, you see, does not seem to be to grasp the Fed's summarizing as man a embankment against the lack of common sense of consumers and the rapacity and untrustworthiness of the enterprise civic. On August 30, ordinal one-fourth GDP was altered up to 4.1%. That suggests healthy cyst in the economic system. Unless the sub-prime development has from top to bottom turned that tendency (and nearby is simply no data, one way or the some other on that point, as of yet), a accountable Fed would for sure have to inquiry the suitability of threatening taxation into such as a burgeoning economic motor. Interestingly, heaps of the "talking heads" of the business organisation open report us that the cutback continues to be strong, and the enviousness of the planetary while, in the aforementioned breath, frantically urging Bernanke to alleviate. Why? Are they swayed that a economic condition is upon us? Perhaps a few are. But peak economists communicate us that we should wait for maturity (slower growth, but growth, all the same) through the end of 2008.

No, I deem that the docket trailing these calls to weaponry is untold more than parochial and gauzy. The care for marginal homeowners on Main Street exhibited by the exceedingly importantly compensated denizens of Wall Street is touching, to be definite. But what is really dynamic this steam engine is that the system and embassy rule centers poverty the income markets found from their own excesses. They want the kine bazaar to keep up its former meteorological rise, and they privation the business enterprise services commercial enterprise to get around the consequences of its management and greed. Significant charge reductions will expected achieve these results, but will too trigger a added malady of the U.S. Dollar and, if the inexplicit reduction is genuinely as wholesome as the numbers would suggest, such as a swing risks heating it, and bringing fund that which the Fed claims to loathe preceding all: inflation.

Bernanke is resisting, but the body is motionless out as to whether he can cart the pressure. What is at share is not individual the latent exposure of an excessively helpful Fed defined above; Mr. Bernanke's office as the Chairman of an organization ostensibly self-sufficient of political forces is anyone put to the interview.

So, for the Bulls, the cross-question is, is Ben a Friend or a Rat? Only instance will notify.

Warren R. Graham

Copyright 2007

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