Opinion

Emanuel Derman

Ten Principles for Recapitalizing Capitalism

Emanuel Derman
Nov 22, 2011 16:29 UTC
Everyone is a grownup and no one is more grown up than anyone else. Your words are as valuable as money. A few things are illegal; the rest is up to you. If you want the benefits of taking risk, you must also suffer the disadvantages. Printing or throwing money cannot solve political or spiritual problems. It can only postpone them. Don’t treat only some people’s insolvency as illiquidity. Optimization in human affairs is an illusion. You always need more capital than you think. Corporations are neither governments nor people. Provide golden parachutes for no one; provide tin parachutes for everyone. “If you believe that capitalism is a system in which money matters more than freedom, you are doomed when people who don’t believe in freedom attack using money.”*

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* Quote courtesy of Edward Lucas’ book The New Cold War: Putin’s Russia and the Threat to the West.

Capitalism with a human face?

Emanuel Derman
Aug 11, 2011 15:48 UTC

In the 1960s the key question for the East was: can you have Communism with a human face?

Hungary tried it in ’56, Poland and Czechoslovakia a decade later, and the answer pretty quickly turned out to be NO. Cuba hasn’t succeeded either, though it may not be all their fault. And as regards China, their face is only half human and it’s not Communist except in name.

But for us, on the heels of the Great & Ongoing Financial Crisis, the long poor tail of the income distribution in the U.S,. the general state of joblessness, and the riots in London, all coupled with some companies making records profits in the midst of a recession, the question is:

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