Wall Street Socialism Revisted

(Wall Street Socialism has a new heroine; image found on website of Tsega Dinka, here).

When I wrote about Wall Street Socialism earlier this year earlier this year I little thought how far it would go. The bailout/buyout of Bear Stearns, it turns out,  wasn’t so much a solution to the current crisis as a prototype for future action. Now we have the re-nationalization of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, and the bailout of AIG (and can the auto industry be far behind?). No wonder  Matthew Yglesias was reminded of Lenin’s New Economic Policy in “which a market economy exists on small scales while the state controls the ‘commanding heights’ of heavy industry and finance.”

In the spirit of the new order, I thought I’d share this delightful mock-poster, which captures the mood of the moment quite well. (I haven’t been able to track down who did the image, which appears on a number of websites). Fortunately, if we need more socialist realist art (and statues of Lenin), they can still be bought at discount rates from many nations in the former Soviet Union.

2 thoughts on “Wall Street Socialism Revisted

  1. Jeet: Love the poster. For a terrific analysis of the drivers behind the crisis (including in particular the failures of risk management theory that allowed such high leverage to be taken on by the i-banks), read David Einhorn’s April 8 speech “Private Profits and Socialized Risk”. Einhorn is the founder of the highly successful hedge fund Greenlight Capital, and is best known (at least most recently) as a vocal short-seller of Lehman’s shares. Seems he made the right call.

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