To be sure, the just-released transcripts of the Federal Reserve meetings from 2006 do not look so terrific with the benefit of hindsight. But don't just point and laugh; you should read a bit of the transcripts yourselves. What you'll see is a very sophisticated group of people assimilating enormous amounts of information. The math and deduction that would predict the events of 2007 and 2008… well, who among us was banging that drum in mid-2006? (Okay, a few people!) But even those of us with anecdotal data—I, for instance, knew something was wrong with America when a friend who was an unemployed non-citizen immediately got a rather [...]
That pill-popping, boy-crazy nincompoop Ayn Rand has got a lot to answer for. Indeed, it's not too much of a stretch to say that we owe at least part of the recent economic crisis to her and her philosophy of Objectivism, since former Fed chief Alan Greenspan was a lifelong disciple of both.
The two first met in the '50s. Back then, a gang of acolytes, calling themselves the Collective, used to gather at Rand's apartment on East 36th Street every Saturday night so they could tell each other how smart they all were. Along came Greenspan one evening, shy and somber.
It took a while for Greenspan [...]
Well, this is awkward. Alan Greenspan, hailed for most of his nearly two-decade run as chairman of the Federal Reserve as a market savant of the first order, is now assailed from all sides for the Fed's apparent role in overinflating the country's garish housing bubble. The charge is a fraught one, reports Fortune magazine's Geoff Colvin, since should it stick, it will fundamentally reshape perceptions of Greenspan's legacy at the central bank. Already the sweep of the emerging indictment is such, Colvin writes, that "four years after leaving the Fed as the Greatest Central Banker Ever, the longest-serving chairman, the Maestro, Alan Greenspan is the designated goat."