Don’t believe the hypo: – The German government denied a report of plans to merge Hypo Real Estate with Commerzbank’s unit Eurohypo, which seems like a clever idea to inject capital into Hypo without nationalization, except that Lloyds-HBOS also seemed like just such a clever idea. As Steinbrueck tries to get permission to seize Hypo, Flowers quits the board. -- The Times reports: “Britain may have to go to the IMF for a huge financial bailout, the influential investor George Soros warns today.” Except that it also reports: There has been some talk that Britain might have to go cap in hand to the International Monetary Fund. “It’s conceivable,” Mr Soros says. “You have a problem that the banking system is bigger than the economy . . . so for Britain to absorb it alone would really pile up the debt . . . if the banking system continued to collapse, it’s a possibility but it’s not a likelihood.” Note to Times: Pigs may fly, but it’s not a likelihood.
Now (2009) and then (2007): Britain in 2009 wants the G20 to pledge $2 trillion in stimulus, according to Der Spiegel. Remember in 2007 when the G8 was pledging $60 billion to fight diseases in Africa and forgiving $40 billion in third-world debt? Britain now wants them to pledge a pro-rata $800 billion to keep themselves rich. -- 2009: Ford is bringing the Fiesta to the U.S. 2007: Hummer was thinking of selling its SUV to Europe.
Hideous fathers: Marine Le Pen breaks with her father on her father’s surely bizarrely translated assertion that the “Holocaust was a detail of history.” (Surely detail in French must have a more dismissive ring to it than detail does in English? Otherwise, he’s undenying the Holocaust.) -- Along with Ponzi schemes, these times are bringing to light Fritzl schemes that come from ever darker regions of the human soul.