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The financial system was systemically corrupt: Ezra Klein's Wonkbook | The Washington Post

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Very few banks came out of the financial crisis looking good. But JPMorgan and Barclays were in that elite club. Their apparent rectitude raised the possibility — as JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon said over and over again — that what we’d had were a few bad banks, not a hopelessly corrupted financial system. Fast forward a couple of years, and JPMorgan and Barclays are not looking so good anymore. And the particular way in which they’re not looking so good points to the fact that we did, indeed, have a hopelessly corrupted financial system. If you haven’t been following the Libor scandal, read Dylan Matthews’ great primer . But if you refuse to do even that, here it is in a few sentences: Libor is the rate at which banks lend to each other. It’s considered a measure of how safe the financial system is. As such, many banks use it as a benchmark to set the rate on the consumer debt you and I buy — they start with the Libor rate and then they add on whatever they think our

What Does Europe want to knw now? Ezra Klein's Wonkbook | The Washington Post

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There's a famous scene at the end of Robert Redford's 1972 film "The Candidate." Redford's Bill McKay has won election to the U.S. Senate. He's sitting in his hotel room. His victory party is raging outside. And as the movie ends, he turns to his campaign manager and mouths, "what do we do now?" I always thought this was a bit dramatic. McKay had just won election to the U.S. Senate, after all. "Absolutely nothing" would have been an acceptable answer. "I'll figure it out sometime in the next 30 years" would also have worked. But it's the right question for Francois Hollande, who edged out Nikolas Sarkozy to become the next president of France. Hollande does need to decide what to do now, at least so far as the euro zone goes. So far, his answer has been, "not this," where "this" means the pro-austerity consensus that Sarkozy had agreed to with Germany's Angela Merkel. And, for th