Friday, February 26, 2010

Rating the rat's ass

The Big Picture today captured a sentiment I feel just about every time I read of one of the rating agencies actions.

Worthless in a Bull Market, Damaging in a Bear Market.

The big 3 credit ratings firms seem to have missed nearly every major crisis, collapse, bankruptcy and default of the past few decades.

These companies are actually less than useless.  They are a parasite on a parasite, providing a way for the parasitical financial system to cover its ass beforehand so that it doesn't even have to not 'work' for its food.  It's disgraceful and they should cease to exist.  Unfortunately, we don't have anything resembling a real market where people would actually have to do their own research and take responsibility for their own analysis or lack thereof, and so these schmucks still play a central role in the credit markets. 

When you think about it, you realize that this is actually the same pattern as always -- the people robbing you get together and sell you "protection" that tries to convince you that the robbery is there for your own good.  You can't get along without them.

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