Saturday, September 20, 2008

Son of Frankenstein on Wall Street

The monster in the Treasury Department has a name, according to the Deal Professor Steven Davidoff, who evokes our favorite phantom to express his outrage and fear over the megadeal maneuvered by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson to bail out AIG with US funds. Read his blog on Henry Paulson's Frankenstein here.

My question is, where's that money coming from? Rumor has it the presses are rolling night and day. It takes a long time to print a trillion dollars.

It's worth noting that in years gone by, another writer connected America's economic woes with the story of the monster made by man. As the nation slid deeper into the Great Depression, a month before Boris Karloff's classic film hit the screen, a book titled Frankenstein, Incorporated by Maurice Wormser came out, questioning the new legal entity called the corporation.

“Corporations are not natural living persons, but articial beings . . . created by the nation or state, which endows them with distinct personality in the eyes of the law, special privileges and comprehensive powers,” wrote Wormser. (Read my Frankenstein: A Cultural History for more about his 1931 book.)

So Paulson's Frankenstein is at least second-generation, proliferating the monstrosity.

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