Lately, I've been thinking about compensation and corporate governance. As if on cue, Alan Greenspan gave testimony yesterday in which he declared that the fundamental premise on which he had based his actions was proven to be in error, that premise being that banks and firms would act in their own institutional self interest. This institutional self interest should have almost eliminated the regulatory burden, as the institutional self interest and the interest of the market are fundamentally the same: sustained growth and prosperity with appropriate risk management.
Despite having blamed his policies for a lot of what we're experiencing now, I have a ton of respect for the guy. He's smart, he's been an earnest public servant and I don't think you could find anyone with a greater appreciation for the common good. I would certainly trade all of the magpies in Congress who were harping all over him with the benefit of hindsight and the promise of a good soundbite on the evening news to prove to all their constituents that they were taking their pound of flesh out of the chief Wall Street bad guy for one of him. Ten times over. But I think he's still a little off in his estimate of where things went wrong. He's very close, and my thoughts on the issue would never have crystallized as they have without his saying what he did this week, but I think it's a narrow and important miss. It being Friday at nearly 430, and with me having been here too long already, I'm not going to explore all of my thoughts on the issue now. Instead I am going to join my lovely wife for dinner with family friends at 2 Amy's, and then go meet another friend for a drink afterward. Tomorrow, I will have my full mojo working and be fit to bore all and sundry to absolute distraction with my thoughts on this matter.
I also read today that Chrysler is laying off 25% of salaried and contract workers. This is as timely as the Greenspan news, and I look forward to chewing on that gem for a while as well.
Enjoy the crappy day tomorrow. I have to spend most of it minding the site. But it's just one week until we pack up all of our water toys and head to Hatteras for a week where, if there is a God, it will blow dogs off their chains the entire week and I will have fixed my windsurfing jones for a good long while. Can't wait.