"Kotlikoff on the Big Con"

John Cochrane summarizes, and largely agrees with, a recent paper by Larry Kotlikoff ont the cause of the Great Recession.

In my view, the understanding that the crisis was a run, that without a run there would have been no crisis, somewhat like the 2000 tech stock bust, and that lots and lots more capital is the only real answer, has emerged slowly over the last 10 years. Larry's essay is good for putting all the others to rest.

Link via Arnold Kling.

UPDATE: In a short piece Kotlikoff makes his case. But he refers to "leverage and opacity" as the cause and misses a better phrase. A commentator I read once stated that almost all financial crises are the result of "leverage and lies".

"Book Review: American Dunkirk"

It's amazing what people can do even in the absence of guidance from our all-knowing federal government.

Did you know that between 300,000 and 500,000 people left Lower Manhattan Island by boat on September 11, 2001? The boat-lift was spontaneous, self-organized for the most part, and has been relatively unsung. The Coast Guard eventually acted as sort-of-coordinator, but had little or nothing to do with the efforts at first.