If anyone thinks for one minute that there isn’t a private competition among the elite financiers and investment bankers, about who can speak in the most arcane, cultivated, scholarly and lettered style, you haven’t been listening to Goldman-Sax bankers lately:
“Overall, Greece will remain a source of uncertainty due to its macro-dynamics. The country is undergoing extreme economic pressures that are likely above and beyond austerity; prolonged uncertainty have led to a multi-year suppression in confidence and a collapse in credit growth, which has helped compressed the private sector, create supply shortages and has contributed to the lack of investment or privatization efforts, higher structural unemployment and persistent inflation currently observed. Unless this uncertainty of tail events is lifted over Greece, moderate solutions will be prone to marginalization, while extreme and populist views could become ever so prevalent.”
Let me translate:
Greece is screwed. Their economy is worse than any austerity measures can fix. Greeks have no confidence. Investors have no confidence. There is no credit available to Greece. Businesses are failing because they can’t borrow money. Because businesses are failing, there are shortages. Because no one has confidence, no one will lend any money. Unemployment is really bad and getting worse, because there are no jobs. Money is worth nothing, so things aren’t really worth what they cost. All of these conditions result from poor fiscal and political leadership and corrupt banks. If no one can fix these conditions quickly, austerity (meaning going without) will not work. If it continues or gets worse, extremists and fascists could take over the government. The end.
It doesn’t surprise me that when people are exposed to that kind of Sax-speak, they tune out. I had to read that first paragraph like, five times before I understood what they were saying. Bernanke, while an improvement over Greenspan, talks like this all the time. No wonder Congress has no idea what’s going on. And, God forbid any of them from whispering to the next guy with a “Huh?” These guys don’t roll out of bed really smart to begin with, so we should not be amazed, I guess.
I wonder whether the G-Sax boys will be as eloquent and arcane when they try to describe the financial disaster after it hits next year, or will they simply say, “Oh. Holy Shit!”
No. I forgot. They will all be in St. Barts.