On 16 April 2010, Bill Moyers Journal (PBS) aired an excellent interview with Simon Johnson and James Kwak on Financial Regulation Reform. [This link takes you to both an archived video and a transcript of the broadcast.] The interview is an indictment of the historical (and current) intertwining of large financial institutions and political legislators to create and maintain a financial oligarchy in this country. Shame on the members of Congress who are trying to thwart efforts to reform our financial system!
This interview is emblematic of the hard-hitting and well-reasoned analysis of Bill Moyers Journal. I am deeply saddened that Bill Moyers is retiring on 30 April 2010; I hope that PBS finds someone nearly as talented as Moyers to fill his shoes.
Simon Johnson is former Chief Economist at the International Monetary Fund and is currently a Professor at MIT’s Sloan School of Management and a Senior Fellow at the Peterson Institute. James Kwak is a former Consultant at McKinsey and Co. and is currently a student at Yale Law School.
Both Johnson and Kwak are co-founders of the financial crisis blog, BaselineScenario, and are co-authors of the recently published book, 13 Bankers. Here are two reviews of “13 Bankers”:
“The best explanation yet for how the smart guys on Wall Street led us to the brink of collapse. In the process, Johnson and Kwak demystify our financial system, stripping it down to expose the ruthless power grab that lies at its center.”
— Elizabeth Warren, Leo Gottlieb Professor of Law, Harvard Law School; and Chair, TARP Congressional Oversight Panel
“Too many discussions of the Great Recession present it as a purely economic phenomenon – the result of excessive leverage or errors of monetary policy or algorithms run mad. Simon Johnson was the first to point out that this was and is a crisis of political economy. His and James Kwak’s analysis of the unholy inter-twining of Washington and Wall Street – a cross between the gilded age and a banana republic – is essential reading.”
— Niall Ferguson, Professor of History, Harvard University; Professor, Harvard Business School; and author of The Ascent of Money