Sunday, January 2, 2011

Excerpts from Tantas posts

Tanta (Doris Dungey ) out at passed away on Nov, 30 2008. Early as 2006 Tanta was indicating that this whole economic demise was probably underway.

I just loved her writing. Clear succinct, and extremely amusing.
I think she has coined a phrase for these times to describe the distribution of risk, "Circle jerk of risk". For those who dont know what a circle jerk is, look it up in .

Here is a Compendium of Tanta's Posts and below some excerpts, my favorites. Bold, Underline emphasis by me.

From Tantas first post Let Slip the Dogs of Hell 12/15/2006

I still haven't gotten over the fact that there's a "capital management" group out there having named itself "Cerberus". Those of you who were not asleep in Miss Buttkicker's Intro to Western Civ will recognize Cerberus; the rest of you may have picked up the mythological fix from its reprise as "Fluffy" in the first Harry Potter novel. Wherever you get your culture, Cerberus is the three-headed dog who guards the gates of Hell. It takes three heads to do that, of course, because it's never clear, in theology or finance, whether the idea is to keep the righteous from falling into the pit or the demons from escaping out of it (the third head is busy meeting with the regulators).

If you thought the only thing that would stop the circle jerk of risk was putting some credit and pricing discipline into the game, I guess you're just a weenie like me. Anyone who can make sense of this is free to set me straight. And if the answer has "sorting socks" in it, don't bother. I've tried that.

This is from confessions (Tanta Makes a Confession 4/03/2007 )

I was there, I had the dream, I drank the Kool Aid, I drafted the Letters of Intent to Participate in Pissant County's latest bond program. I trained loan officers to understand how ARMs work, because I believed that I could get them to want to inform their customers—because it is the right thing to do. I could make it fun to be on the side of the angels, and still make a fair profit for the depositors and the shareholders and the employees.

And a comment/answer that just made my day ( 04.03.07)

Eek, one Thursday afternoon, having read the latest outrage from HR, I stormed out of the office like the Wrath of Goddess, and stopped at a very cheap retail outlet--in all senses of the term--to purchase a lime green sleeveless zip-front mini-dress and a pair of deep brown high-heeled platform-soled ankle-strap sandals to wear to work the next day, the holy casual Friday.

You all don't know this, but I'm not the voluptuous sort. Tall, thin. I looked about as appetizing as a half a Freon-flavored popsicle propped upright in a dollop of congealed dog poop. It was perfect.

I had decided I was tired of hectoring memos aimed at our file clerks and fax operators, those loyal dogged folks we paid just over minimum wage, and who had a bad habit of showing up on casual day a little, well, tacky sometimes. Even, perhaps, trashy. There I had been, quietly role-modeling for them all in my elegant, restrained Pendleton suits, and for some reason they didn't run right out and spend a week or two's gross for one of my tailored dresses. And, yeah, they occasionally crossed the line, taste-wise.

But that day, HR had to either pick on someone its own size or admit that it was time to address the clothing budget.

It's a wonder I never got fired.

I will never claim that childish acting out in the office will bring the revolution. Nor am I inclined to apologize for it, either.
From "Scratch and Dent" Loans in 1/31/2007 a comment on the Big Guns balance sheets

There used to be this idea that you didn't push so hard on your correspondents and brokers that you broke their backs—you need a counterparty to keep having a business model. That's a "normal" downturn idea. The current one seems to be more like "close the gates of mercy, shoot the wounded, and sink the lifeboats." That does imply—as JPMorgan also implies—that the Big Dogs have more cooties on the balance sheet than they're prepared to tolerate. Looks like total war to me.

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