By Michael Lewis
The tsunami of inexpensive credits that rolled around the planet among 2002 and 2008 was once greater than an easy monetary phenomenon: it was once temptation, providing whole societies the opportunity to bare features in their characters they can now not regularly have the funds for to indulge.
Icelanders desired to cease fishing and develop into funding bankers. The Greeks desired to flip their nation right into a pinata crammed with money and make allowance as many voters as attainable to take a whack at it. The Germans desired to be much more German; the Irish desired to cease being Irish.
Michael Lewis's research of bubbles past our seashores is so brilliantly, unfortunately hilarious that it leads the yankee reader to a comfy complacency: oh, these silly foreigners. but if he turns a cruel eye on California and Washington, DC, we see that the narrative is a catch baited with humor, and we comprehend the reckoning that awaits the best and greediest of debtor international locations.
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Additional info for Boomerang: Travels in the New Third World
The same authors contend that there exists an unacceptable legal loophole in Spanish criminal law, compared to other legal systems containing specific provisions for corporate crimes and breach of trust, under which it would be possible to include the unlawful behaviors of banks with respect to the irregular deposit of checking accounts. (p. 429) In Spanish criminal law, the article governing misappropriation is article 252 (mentioned by Antonio Ferrer Sama) of the new 1996 Penal Code (article 528 of the former), which states: The penalties specified in article 249 or 250 will be applied to anyone who, to the detriment of another, appropriates or embezzles money, goods, securities or any other movable property or patrimonial asset which he has received on deposit, on consignment or in trust, or by way of another claim carrying the obligation to deliver or return the property, or who denies having received it, when the amount appropriated exceeds 300 euros.
So the depositary becomes the “owner,” but only in the sense that, for as long as he continues to hold the tantundem, he is free to allocate the particular, indistinguishable units as he chooses. This is the full extent to which property 13 Money, Bank Credit, and Economic Cycles rights are transferred in the irregular deposit, unlike the loan contract, where complete availability of the loaned good is transferred for the duration of the contract’s term. Therefore, even given the one feasible “similarity” between the irregular deposit and the monetary loan (the supposed “transfer” of ownership), it is important to understand that this transfer of ownership has a very different economic and legal meaning in each contract.
Not only does he reveal the parallelism between the market and common law on the one hand, and socialism and legislation on the other, but he is also the first jurist to recognize Ludwig von Mises’s argument on the impossibility of socialist economic calculation as an illustration of a more general realization that no legislator would be able to establish by himself, without some kind of continuous collaboration on the part of all the people concerned, the rules governing the actual behavior of everybody in the endless relationships that each has with everybody else.