Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Insurance

I've been on quite a roll with my writing the last couple of weeks. One of those bursts of energy where you have no problem finding something to write about. I could go to a website and find five things I wanted to write about. I always enjoy those bursts, but they're a bit manic-depressive because I know they won't last and at some point the well is going to run dry again.

It's only one day, of course, and tomorrow there might be five things begging to be written about. But this evening, nada. Not even Anonymous hacking Sarah Palin's Yahoo account can really get me worked up. I'd actually feel some degree of sympathy for Palin because hacking an email account is a horrible breech of privacy. Except, of course, it appears the account was set up as a way of Palin and her inner circle to discuss controversial issues without being subject to Alaska's Access to Information legislation. Government emails can be subject to an Access to Information request, but not private email accounts like Yahoo or Gmail. Nice. There goes the sympathy right out the window.

Then there's the notion of an $85 billion bail out of a fucking insurance company is a good thing. I'm still wrapping my mind around the idea that is a good thing. Judging by the stock markets today, so are a lot of other people. As I like to say from time to time, that one is above my paygrade. A lot of very smart people seem to have absolutely no clue what all of this means, except that it's probably going to get uglier.

And that's all I've got. Sad, but true. Plus I feel a cold coming on so the ability to ramble on at length is abandoning me. Maybe tomorrow.

Last Five
1. Tell me a lie - The Fratellis
2. The end - The Beatles*
3. Shape of my heart - Sting
4. I am a rock - Me First and the Gimmie Gimmies
5. Australia - The Shins

6 comments:

Megan said...

I could not agree more about the e-mails. Normally I would be completely sympathetic to anyone who was hacked like that. However, the e-mail account only existed so she could try to hide information from the public.

Mireille Sampson said...

AIG falls into the "too big too fail category" - and far too intertwined to fail. they're into everything. The number 1 reason they have been bailed out is that they insure the banks...they insure the banks' debt. They do, of course insure a hell of a lot more than banks, they're massive and their reach is international, but it's the consequences of the banks debts not being insured at a time when the banks are on such shakey ground...the stock market - and the economy - would be much uglier if AIG were allowed to fail. It's just such a sorry state.

Panic seems to be the order of the day, with the only two independent investment banks standing now suffering rumours. Even though they say they have enough money to make it through this, the panic may force them to partner up or even fail. It's like self-fulfilling prophecy at this point.

Karin said...

Mirelle -
Are you sure you're not an American? ;-) I swear you know more about our financial system more than anyone I know!

towniebastard said...

I don't mean this to sound condescending, but of all my friends from university, no one has more consistantly surprised me than Mireille.

Because I don't think the 23 year-old version of myself would ever believed than the woman who's room I hung out in with virtually no furniture, who had just finished dying her hair three different colours, who was discussing the merits of different body piercings while gleefully decorating the toy tank and Barbie doll I bought her as a Christmas gift (so she could create her own Tank Girl) would one day be the most knowledgeable friend I have on financial matters.

Because, after all, that would have just been weird.

Mireille Sampson said...

Ya know, there are days I miss that hair - and it was 5 different colours, not 3. Well, some of the time, it changed every six months. I don't change it *quite* so often now. I'm pretty sure fuschia hair would be a pain in the ass in an islamic state.

This place can be really very stressful at times. We went our for iftar (evening meal during Ramadan) 'do last week and when we arrived at the hotel I realised I didn't have my national id on me. Not that the hotel needed it, but it's illegal - meaning you can be arrested - for not having it on you. I was thinking: Great, we're gonna get pulled over at a random check on the way home and I'm gonna get arrested for no id and maybe they'll think my skirt is too short and so I'm actually a hooker and not his wife, blah, blah, blah." I didn't buy enough alcohol to make it through Ramadan , damnit - and it's my birthday next week. You'd think I would have these things all figured out by now.

I figure it's more important that I - an artist - figure out the money thing compared to say a civil servant who can get a gov't pension. Though it's god for everyone to know what they're loking at. And I must admit that, while I think it's necessary to bail out AIG and F&F, I am not impressed with the hurling of cash at banks currently happening. They gave Bear Stearns investors more moeny than originally offered - and for waht? Because the investors didn't bother to read annual reports and notice if something was wrong? Why the taxpayer should cover that I'll never know - especially in a country where they won't develope decent public health and education services. If the investment banks can't handle it ,let 'em be bought up or die.

towniebastard said...

I think that's one of the things that makes me so...happy? Impressed? with you. Far too many people involved in the arts have no clue on financial matters. I always used to argue far too many had a clue on how to promote themselves and I still think that's true.

But I wish more had just basic common sense when it came to the the business of their arts. And you do, which is great.

And I miss the hair as well. Fortunately, I have pics....;)