Monday, July 06, 2009

Cartoonomics: We are all Fuddites now

My appreciation of the special affinity between cartoons and economics has continued to grow since the first appearance of the Underpants Gnomes Business Model for Success.

Further advancing the field of cartoonomics, Mark Ames casts you and me as the perpetually thwarted comic-foil Elmer Fudd. According to Ames, we‘re playing the chump extwwwaordinaire to the oligarchy’s Bugs Bunny. (Now this is where I disagree with Ames; I would have gone with Daffy Duck. Bugs is a trickster, Daffy a full-tilt sociopath.) Anyway, as Exhibit A, Ames puts forward this piece of comedy of comedy gold.
[Former Countrywide Financial Corp chief executive charged with securities fraud and insider trading Angelo] Mozilo, the guy who destroyed millions of Americans' lives and now faces fraud charges, is making American taxpayers—his victims—pay for his legal defense. Yup, Bank of America, which only exists thanks to tens of billions of taxpayer dollars, is using YOUR MONEY to defend Angelo Mozilo against YOU, the victim.
Funnier still, the mega-gazillionaire Mozilo doesn’t even need the money because he's already stolen at least half a billion from us suckers. Why is he taking the money? For the same reason dogs lick their balls, says Ames: because it tickles.

Bet you’re laughing as hard as I am.

And in his funny yet scathing take on the United States of Goldman Sachs, Matt Taibbi comes up with the perfect metaphor for investing in the stock market: the watermelon drop.

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