2 Paul A. Volcker, with Christine Harper, Keeping at It: The Quest for Sound Money and Good Government (New York: PublicAffairs, 2018), 162.
3 See Brenner, The Force of Finance, and “Dismiss Macroeconomic Myths and Restore Accountability,” American Affairs 1, no. 1 (Spring 2017): 62–81, about “democratization of capital” and accountability.
4 It is another question whether “real estate” should be favored for any special treatment. Perhaps if we used a variation on the French term for “real estate,” immobilier, there would be more public debate on this. After all, the term “immobile” captures the essence of this asset class better than the term “real”: it immobilizes people to some extent, and it is also easier to tax. The 1997 change in the tax law actually turned this asset into becoming more “mobile”—for a while.
5 The rates on these contracts were based on the following calculation: the sum of the one-year Constant Maturity Treasury Index (CMT) and an assumed 2.75 percent margin.
6 See Thorvaldur Gylfason, “Iceland after the Fall,” Milken Institute Review (First Quarter 2010): 40–51.
7 Bernanke exaggerated the role of banks, forgetting the success of high-yield markets since the 1970s—in many ways a superior alternative to loans handed out by banks (which is why banks were so much against this new market at the time; in a short period, it took away more than 30 percent of their business). The 1930s should never have been his frame of reference.
8 David P. Goldman, “Has the Derivatives Volcano Already Begun to Erupt?,” Asia Times, October 9, 2018.
9 Henry Kissinger, “Henry Kissinger: To Settle the Ukraine Crisis, Start at the End,” Washington Post, March 5, 2014.