Rewording the recession

February 19, 2009 at 10:28 pm | Posted in Misc. | Leave a comment

You might not have noticed, but I generally like to put a bit of preparation into my blog posts. Normally it just takes the form of googling, or trawling through RSS feeds to see what my peers are writing about, or (if I’m feeling particularly inspired) just plagiarising the Guardian’s Society website. Anything to add a bit more value for money in these austere times.

But because this Clusterf#@k to the Poor House Global Financial Crisis is in the realm of economics, and because economics is a rigorous and exact science which produces perfect results every time, I decided to prepare for this post by spending an hour with an abacus, a ouija board, a bottle of De Kuyper and an episode of Most Haunted Live.*

What did I learn? Well, not much beyond ‘we’re all completely screwed’, ‘damn, that’s some good brandy’ and ‘why don’t these idiots realise this show’s a fraud?’, but I did come to the conclusion that if we’re living in a world where avid Randists can break bread with revolutionary Marxists, perhaps we should just discard all the old ways of talking about the economy and start a whole new language.

Luckily, help is at hand. Via comrade Cust – gentleman, scholar and newbie blogger – I discover that someone’s already begun fashioning a new vocabulary for the End of Capitalism. So without further ado, this is the new lingo you’ll need to learn for this scared new world. You can thank me when you’ve received your first big bank bonuses:


Broadly, attempts to explain why trillions of dollars in the world economy suddenly ceased to exist in the fall of 2008.

Specifically, any attempt to explain an economic principle, process, or effect that fails to follow the linguistic conventions of syntax and sense. Example: credit default swaps.

ayn randyism

Irrational, herd-like erotomania for the work of Ayn Rand among laissez faire economists.


A condition, sometimes priaponomic, of desiring to read and hear more bad news about the economy. Synonymous with moving to Alaska for fear of social unrest in urban areas, and/or buying large quantities of tuna, beans, and semi-automatic weaponry

doodoo economics

Successor to voodoo economics


The perfection of economic modeling through hindsight


A situation where the taxpayer buys an industry but not its product.


Fictitious assets, for example – the money we never *really* had in our 401k accounts

quantitative teasing

Economic frottage: repeated suggestions that the Fed/Central bank will buy your fassets

More here. I’m sure the dictionary will be out in time for Christmas.

*Disclaimer: none of this actually happened.


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