The end of the Reagan Revolution

The end of the Reagan Revolution - It was the worst of...

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It was the worst of times for ordinary Americans. And even worse times for deregulators and supply-siders. The bright side? Their party is over. By Andrew Leonard Salon Former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan testifies before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in Washington Oct. 23, 2008. Jan. 2, 2009 | Of all the economic earthquakes that racked the global economy in 2008, one temblor ranks supreme. Alan Greenspan's declaration to Congress on Oct. 23: "I made a mistake." In those four words can be heard the crumbling of at least three decades of ideological dominance. Technically speaking, Greenspan was acknowledging that he had misjudged the private sector's ability to manage risk in a largely deregulated environment. After all the carnage on Wall Street in 2008, the conclusion, even to Greenspan, was inescapable: High finance's best and brightest had proved incapable of understanding their own business. How did we get here? We will be mulling over the extraordinary economic events of 2008 for years to come. We could have plenty of morbid fun, right now, reliving the nightmare in horrific detail: the collapse of the subprime-mortgage-backed securities market; the demise of Bear Stearns and Merrill Lynch; the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers; the "rescue" of AIG; the great drama of the fight to authorize the Troubled Assets Relief Program, complete with John McCain's ludicrous, and revelatory, campaign "suspension," and the sight of Hank Paulson on bended knee before Nancy Pelosi. We would be remiss not to note the wild swings in all kinds of commodity prices, not least the surge of gas and oil prices to record highs, followed by an even more amazing tumble. A historically unprecedented implosion of the U.S. residential housing market achieved the previously unthinkable: The American consumer juggernaut halted dead in its tracks. Oh, and the economy played a critical role in the outcome of an epochal presidential election. No
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The end of the Reagan Revolution - It was the worst of...

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