Quick Links 9/13/07

*Michael Lewis is a wonderful writer and a guy who understands and loves markets. You have to read (here and here) his take on the subprime lending crisis. (Not everyone is amused). Lewis himself was a bond trader for a few years in the 1980s, leading to his smash hit book “Liar’s Poker,” and he poses here as a Gordon Gekko-type hedge-fund manager who blames poor people for evertything. The great thing about these pieces is that they are double-edged satire, containing enough cold-hearted economic truth to effectively skewer subprime borrowers and Capitol Hill demagogues, but at the same time mocking the misanthropic (at best) attitudes he parrots.
*Speaking of which, Gekko himself is apparently coming back as a hedge-fund manager (improbable given his insider-trading conviction, but that’s Hollywood – it wouldn’t be as much fun if he was running a car insurance company). I wonder how he reacts when he finds out Martin Sheen ended up President.
*Medieval scholastics would have been awed by the effort exerted by the Third Circuit to determine that putting on a hair net is “work”. Of course, I am thankful not to work in a place of employment that has an “evisceration” department.
*The Constitution stops at the frat house door, as the Second Circuit upholds a college’s right to use anti-discrimination policies to deny recognition to a fraternity on grounds of not admitting women. There’s a case to be made for greater autonomy of educational institutions and a case to be made for the fundamental ambiguity of right-to-association law, but the reasoning used in this opinion is almost as flimsy as the public policy at issue is blinkered.
*An ex-parrot who was impressively intelligent.
*Of course, Michael Moore’s new movie is loaded with untruths. (H/T). That’s like going to a Jackie Chan movie and seeing a lot of kicking.
*Seems like a whole lot of nothing to me.

5 thoughts on “Quick Links 9/13/07”

  1. Michael Moore’s new movie is loaded with untruths.
    Is that the best they could come up with? First, it’s calling a blanket statement a lie, which is somewhat tenuous to start, and it refers to one concluding summation/statement.
    Loaded, indeed.

  2. The fraternity argument reminds me why we all hate lawyers. There was a Minnesota case years ago where a blind person won the right to be a copywriter. They had to provide him with a reader (at company expense) to do his job.
    And my favorite: True case: A man sued Hooters for his right to be a Hooters Girl.
    I remember when a basic argument against the ERA was then we would have to have all co ed bathrooms.
    OK, now I’m the judge. Here is my ruling: “There are some basic human endeavors that, by their very nature, requires a certain type of discrimination. The Roman Catholic Church may not ordain Jews, Muslims, Protestants, or any other religion as an officer in their church unless said people, regardless of American Citizenship, renounces all other religious beliefs. Hugh Hefner need not invite men, or anyone else with one Y chromosome to his parties, no matter how much those “Yers” really want to go badly. And, uh, oh yeah, men can’t join sororities and women can’t join fraternities. Unless they can drop their drawers and prove the surgeons were busy.”
    Next case…..

  3. The college I went to had co-ed fraternities only. The one all-male frat and all-female sorority were not recognized by the college.

  4. *Seems like a whole lot of nothing to me.
    That is the hole in the global warming theory.
    Umm, this seems off-topic by a huge factor. Emptiness in space relates to global warming…?

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