Andrew Ross Sorkin
Tiptoeing on a tightrope past insider trading laws may be deft and clever, but it doesn't make it right.
There's a good argument to be made that companies that are private, where they're run by partnerships, where everybody has true stake in them and they're not playing with other people's money, that by default it's a safer system, because you really have skin in the game. You really own the company.
Investors are sometimes too busy looking for profits to notice where the truth ends and the deception begins.
There are those on Wall Street and in the plutocracy who feel that Geithner is a hero who deftly steered the country from economic ruin. To many ordinary Americans, however, he is considered a Wall Street puppet and a servant of the so-called banksters.
Debt, we've learned, is the match that lights the fire of every crisis. Every crisis has its own set of villains - pick your favorite: bankers, regulators, central bankers, politicians, overzealous consumers, credit rating agencies - but all require one similar ingredient to create a true crisis: too much leverage.
The moment a large investor doesn't believe a government will pay back its debt when it says it will, a crisis of confidence could develop. Investors have scant patience for the years of good governance - politically fraught fiscal restructuring, austerity and debt rescheduling - it takes to defuse a sovereign-debt crisis.
I don't sleep well. I'm a very nervous - by my nature - anxious, almost paranoid person and reporter.
Corporate tax reform is nice in theory but tough in practice. It most likely requires lower tax rates and the closing of loopholes, which many companies are sure to fight. And whatever new, lower tax rate is determined, there will probably be another country willing to lower its rate further, creating a sad race to zero.
The blowback against a bailout of Lehman would have been fierce. It is often forgotten, but the prevailing wisdom the day after Lehman fell was that its collapse was a good thing.
There is a long list of psychology research demonstrating that appearances matter more than most us would care to admit. As shallow as it may be, better-looking people have been shown in various studies to have higher self-esteem and more charisma, are considered more trustworthy and are better negotiators.
Under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, a company is not allowed to provide a personal benefit to a decision maker in return for business. But hiring the sons and daughters of powerful executives and politicians is hardly just the province of banks doing business in China: it has been a time-tested practice here in the United States.
Unfortunately, I think it's very difficult to separate policy from politics. In a perfect world, in some instances, you probably would want to. In other instances, you'd probably say that the political element is important because it should, in a perfect world, match what the stakeholders need or want, or what the public is after.
In truth, a leader should either apologize, mean it and do something about it - or not apologize at all.