Gael O’Brien Reviews The Documentary – “Inside Job”

From the article

While of course we know the outcome of the unfolding events Ferguson describes, his interviews with many of the players in the crisis provide additional insight into the larger question of how could so many very bright people be involved in a failure so huge? The film shows the consequences when thought capital is wrapped around the dogged pursuit of an ideology, in this case deregulation, so that conflicting data or opposing viewpoints are not allowed to interfere.

The band of men from Ivy League economics departments wielded a lot of power in the 30-year push for deregulation. They served as consultants to the industry and were selected for significant regulatory or White House advisor positions. Ferguson raises questions about their objectivity as scholars, as well as whether their integrity was compromised by conflicts of interest and accepting fees from Wall Street, or to testify before Congress, or as expert witnesses.

I’ve already written a recommendation style review of the documentary and this one is very positive as well.

You need to read it to get the full flavor of O’Brien’s prose.

James Pilant

5 thoughts on “Gael O’Brien Reviews The Documentary – “Inside Job”

  1. Our free market economic system depends on the exercise of ethical behavior by corporate officials to provide for the public good. Absent decision making based on ethical values such as honesty, objectivity and integrity, the system cannot be trusted to allocate resources in the best interests of society. As Gael O’Brien so eloquently points out, the root cause of such problems is the pursuit of self-interests to the exclusion of all others. The financial crisis that started in 2007 resulted in large part from unethical conduct including making home mortgage loans when financial institutions knew (or should have known) that borrowers were not qualified – a fact that was ignored (or overlooked) so that these institutions could earn large fees from closing and other transaction costs. However, I don’t think deregulation is to blame. It’s a symptom of a greater malaise that underlies egoistic decision making that has infected our free market economic system.


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