Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Last night I dreamed I was in the White House. Mr. Obama had invited me to the Oval Office to help him "breathe" and calm his nerves through visual meditation. 

When I arrived,  I congenially reminded him being a President is only a job. However, we appreciate his taking this country, his land, to heart. We all love him for it. Just please, Mr. President do not start aging as fast as your predecessors! 

He revealed, being troubled, that he was unable to tell the whole truth. I assured him that it was okay. Also, he continued, "I am worried about Larry."

"What about him? I added. Are you second guessing your thoughts and the Chinese proverb from 400 BC  "Keep you friends close, and your enemies closer?"  Top economic advisor's shouldn't rake in the compensations from troubled Wall Street firms we just paid off, as he does, but we got to give him a chance."

"He too supported and signed that bill to deregulate derivatives." 
  I whispered, "Take a breath, let it all out, It's not your fault."

  " Those who read the good literature and papers, "I said,"  are well aware that your lips need to remain sealed about some of these issues; that is, I know that you knew there were bonuses incorporated into the A.I.G.'s bail-out. No?" 

He sighed.

  I too got a bit short of breath. 
Mr. Obama continued his thought. "When I think about the bankers who already made a ton of money...."

"So?"  I said and tried to conceal my own outrage. "Let it go."

"Yes," he answered, exasperated. "Once we buy up the 'toxic assets',  the same people who already made millions will make more millions."

My heart was skipping a beat or two. I assured him that we will be okay. 

  "Phil Graham," he uttered, "wrecked the economy. He buried the deregulation of derivatives into an eleven-thousand-page bill, for President Clinton to sign a few days before Christmas 1999. 

While all of us were flustered and angry about Bush winning and Al Gore losing. . . No one except Senator Byron L. Dorgan of North Dakota saw it coming." 

I tried to soften the blows. 
"Please, Mr. President it is not your fault."

"Of course no one read the whole thing," he continued calmly, "or realized it's application. They only saw dollar signs." 

I told him to keep on breathing. "We will get to the bottom of this," I assured him.

 "Mr. President," I said softly, "call Professor Frank Partnoy over at the University of San Diego. He is a gifted writer you can trust. He worked on Wall Street in 1995. He will explain everything to you in laymen's terms. 

In his book  'F.I.A.S.C.O.', he explains how 'derivatives -credit- default-swaps' led to the current financial crisis.  They might help you understand, so you can sleep in peace." 

Just when I wanted to say good-bye, my eight-year-old daughter awoke from a dream and woke me from mine. Her dream I will tell you next...

1 comment:

  1. A lovely story, in unabashed Martina style. You are not afraid to put your whole self into the story you tell. Thank you!