Monday, January 04, 2010

Look What a Mere $10.0 Billion Gets You.

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Look What a Mere $10.0 Billion Gets You.

Dear Friends:

In these trying times of economic recession, when banks and world governments are playing "musical chairs" with vast sums of unsupported currency and credit, I often worry about the value of the United States Dollar.

Despite being an Internationalist, my roots (and a few other parts) are still in the United States of America, and there is an unmistakable pride that wells up inside of me when I see someone salute the flag, or upon hearing a rousing political speech by some true patriot or well-scripted political aspirant.

Imagine my delight at seeing the headline (courtesy of the Associated Press) below! For a cash advance of a mere (Emir?) 10.0 Billion USD, the almost-bankrupt Dubai named its tallest building (which is likely the tallest building in the world, if you don't count the monasteries on some Asian mountaintops -- I mean, take away the height of the mountain, and these are just shorties) after its fiscal savior. This is not only a demonstration of the power of the United States Dollar, but it is an encouraging show of gratitude on the part of Dubai.

Once, in exchange for several thousand dollars, I had a pew in a church named after me. I felt like a king. Another time, for several thousand dollars, I had my whole family's names engraved on a piece of metal shaped like a leaf and mounted on the wall of a synagogue.

On a serious note, bad loans are simply bad loans, regardless of cause or currency. When a bailout loan is made with the full knowledge that the borrower does not have the means of repayment, a cascading credit calamity ensues, with one default precipitating another. A banking avalanche. And who, generally, is forced to make the ultimate sacrifice to pay for these bridge-to-nowhere loans? The taxpaying, hardworking citizenry.

In evaluating any transaction or political policy, it is always a worthwhile endeavor to find out who is benefitting and who is ultimately paying. The referenced Dubai article follows for your review.

Dubai renames world's tallest tower Burj Khalifa (AP)

The Burj Dubai, the world's tallest building, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on the official opening of the building Monday, Jan. 4, 2010.  the Burj Dubai is over 800 metres (2,625 ft) tall and has more than 160 stories, the most of any building in the world and has an observation deck on its 124th floor with 360-degree views of the entire city.  The Burj Dubai is home to the world’s first Armani Hotel, luxury offices and residences and will ultimately contain a  community of up to 12,000 people.  (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)AP - Dubai has renamed its new skyscraper, the tallest in the world, the Burj Khalifa, state news agency WAM reported, in a surprise move apparently intended to honor the United Arab Emirates' president. ####


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Selected Terms and Labels: Dubai, credit crisis, bad loans, who benefits vs who pays, government policy, bridge loans, cascading defaults, Articles by Douglas Castle, TNNW Newsletter,

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