Shorter Megan McArdle: It's not Greenspan's fault.
Encapsulated Megan McArdle:
A few weeks ago, I was talking to a well-respected journalist who doesn't cover
financial matters. She was pushing me for the culprit behind this mess,
and was unsatisfied when I pointed out that there were a lot of good reasons to
make most of these bad decisions. Ultimately she cried in frustration,
"but somebody must have done it!" This is how we approach the
problem: we want villains, guilt, punishment. But when systems fail,
they usually fail systemically. If one person, even Alan Greenspan, could
bring down the entire edifice, then we'd be in massive trouble, so we should be
grateful that it isn't the case.
Reasoning by anecdote, anonymous sources, strawman opponent spouting illogical and easily refutable opposition, strawman expressing emotional immaturity and limited reasoning, projection of one's own ideas on everyone else, meaningless catch-phrase, and finally a negation that depends on total ignorance of actual events.
You can also see Megan's ideology in full force here. The "market" is such an unpredictable, nebulous force that it's impossible to hold anyone accountable for what happens, even the one man who was by far in the best position to shape national economic policy.
So, basically, the economy is beyond our comprehension or at least beyond anything but the most complex and nuanced approaches...except when it comes to tax and fiscal policies that favor the rich and corporations and cuts to government social spending. Those things always benefit the economy no matter the circumstances or what history may indicate. Got it, Megan.
Right, things happens, and cycles do their cycling things, and forces shape events in different directions.
Who could have known?
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