Archive for September, 2008

The Troubled American

While hurricanes wipe across American eastern states every year, the Tsunami hits the Wall Street right now is truly once-in-a-century, or the first time ever in American history. Call it meltdown, collapse, demise, or simply dead, disappearing…
and the latest casualty, Washington Mutual, is among the largest banks in US, and the biggest bank failure in the history ever. Personally, I liked Washington Mutual for its convenience, and free wire transfer which I did just a couple of days ago.

Let’s list the names here, as they will no longer exist in reality, but only in story…
Countrywide, Bear Sterns, Indy Mac, Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, AIG, Washington Mutual…

all big names and once-respected companies, and AIG was among the Dow Jones! Gone with them are sky-high virtual wealth that American once owned. Were they ever the real thing, or just scam?

While people at the Wall Street are in panic like the twin tower is falling, and people in Washington are screaming “too big to fail”, the ordinary people are forced to pay for it, with $700,000,000,000.00 US dollars (Man, count the zeros, we do not see such huge number in daily life). Why the bailout? “You got to save the financial industry!” as they said. We, the ordinary people, are hooked either bailout or not - pick one: this poison or the other poison.

Someone called it: “privatize the profit and socialize the loss”. The crop of so-called financial elites and the greedy American corp executes plotted and directed the real-life drama that eclipsed the Hollywood’s exaggeration.

With the $700000000000.00 on the table again, who will benefit from it? They would not be shy of profiting from it. And after all the mess, they will start over and do it again. And the root cause of problems? who cares?

“Too big to fail?” While some banks disappear, other ones are gulping up - Bank Of American took Countrywide and Merrill Lynch; JP Morgan took Bear Sterns and Washington Mutual. Ain’t we creating even bigger financial giants? The giant that is too big to fail?

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Olympic NP trip

We had a summer vacation visiting Olympic National Park, Seattle, and Victoria area. We were not able to go to Beijing Olympics, but we did visit the Olympic park (at least the same name), watched the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony in a Seattle hotel.

Here are the photos from the trip