In These New Times

A new paradigm for a post-imperial world

Posts Tagged ‘debt’

Is America on a Burning Platform?

Posted by smeddum on October 17, 2010

15th October 2010

The Burning Platform

David Walker, the former Comptroller of the United States from 1998 until 2008, has been warning politicians, the media, and the American public for over a decade that we are off course and headed for disaster. In August 2007, before the financial system meltdown of 2008, Mr. Walker declared:

The US government is on a “burning platform” of unsustainable policies and practices with fiscal deficits, chronic healthcare underfunding, immigration and overseas military commitments threatening a crisis if action is not taken soon. There are striking similarities between America’s current situation and the factors that brought down Rome, including declining moral values and political civility at home, an over-confident and over-extended military in foreign lands and fiscal irresponsibility by the central government. The fiscal imbalance meant the US was on a path toward an explosion of debt. With the looming retirement of baby boomers, spiraling healthcare costs, plummeting savings rates and increasing reliance on foreign lenders, we face unprecedented fiscal risks. Current US policy on education, energy, the environment, immigration and Iraq also was on an unsustainable path. Our very prosperity is placing greater demands on our physical infrastructure. Billions of dollars will be needed to modernize everything from highways and airports to water and sewage systems.

Three years have passed since Mr. Walker sounded the alarm and issued his dire warning. The National Debt in August 2007 was $8.9 trillion. Today it stands at $13.6 trillion, a 53% increase in just over 3 years. It took 205 years as a country to accumulate $4.7 trillion of debt. We’ve added $4.7 trillion in the last 38 months. It doesn’t appear that anyone in government heeded Mr. Walker’s warnings. Read the rest of this entry »

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Banks to seal control of media industry?

Posted by smeddum on September 22, 2009

A Curious Snag In Debt-For-Equity Restructurings As Goldman And JPM Do A Stealthy Roll Up Of The Media Industry

Submitted by Tyler Durden

09/20/2009 19:11 -0500

ZeroHedge

While most hedge funds traditionally have an on-shore and an off-shore investment vehicle, the bulk of investable capital is allocated to accounts domiciled in the Caymans, Bahamas, Isle of Man, or some other tax “friendly” country, as LPs are never too crazy about that little snag known as taxes, and offshoring provides some nice and useful alternatives to said snag. Distressed hedge funds, those that acquire either secured or unsecured debt with the hope of equitization, are no exception. Yet equitization by essentially foreign vehicles is starting to get some dirty looks by regulators, which limit “foreign” equity investments in traditionally American companies and sectors. Some developments in the upcoming restructurings of media companies may put a new wrinkle on what is promptly becoming the most prevalent and profitable means for hedge funds to invest capital (not by necessity but for the simple reason that if a sector is not too big to fail, it is likely failing massively). The case of Citadel Broadcasting, which Zero Hedge discussed recently as commentary highlighting the lunacy of the current investment climate, is just such an example. Read the rest of this entry »

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Dawnay:Founded upon debt and derivatives

Posted by smeddum on July 20, 2008

Financial Times

By Kate Burgess and Daniel Thomas

Published: July 19 2008 03:00 | Last updated: July 19 2008 03:00

Pity the poor receivers and administrators sent in to restructure the labyrinthine collection of private companies, joint ventures and investments that makes up the crumbling business empire of Guy Naggar and Peter Klimt. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Financial crisis | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

 
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