Meet the new BOJ, same as the old BOJ

Despite the title of this post, I support their recent move, and think it will help.  Unfortunately it won’t help very much.  Here’s the story:

TOKYO (AP) — Japan’s central bank cut its key interest rate to virtually zero in a surprise move Tuesday and is looking to set up a $60 billion fund to buy government bonds and other assets as it tries to inject life into a faltering economy.

The Bank of Japan’s nine-member policy board voted unanimously to set its overnight call rate target to a range of zero to 0.1 percent, returning to zero rates for the first time in more than four years.

The decision underscores growing worries about the Japanese economy, which is being battered by a strong yen and persistently falling prices. The central bank had left rates untouched since December 2008 when it lowered the target to 0.1 percent.

Recent economic indicators point toward deteriorating exports, industrial production and corporate sentiment. Authorities intervened in currency markets last month to weaken the yen, but the impact was short-lived. Lawmakers repeatedly called on the Bank of Japan for more help.

.   .   .

The rate cut is the first step of a three-pronged approach outlined by the central bank to answer critics who had disparaged previous efforts as inadequate. It did nothing at its last meeting in early September, which followed an emergency meeting in late August when it expanded a low-interest credit program.

“It’s a good move,” said Kyohei Morita, chief economist at Barclays Capital Japan. “All that they announced today is something that is beyond my expectations.”

Other analysts agreed. Junko Nishioka, chief economist at RBS Securities Japan, said the central bank “made major progress” Tuesday.

Part two of what the BOJ describes as a “comprehensive monetary easing policy” is a pledge to maintain the zero rate policy until prices start rising again. That will probably take three or four years, which means rock-bottom rates are here to stay for a while, Morita said.

Japan last period of zero rates lasted for five years starting March 2001. Through its “quantitative easing” policy to boost the economy, the central bank flooded markets with excess liquidity to hold short-term interest rates near zero.

The final piece of the central bank’s strategy is the creation of a temporary 5-trillion-yen ($60 billion) fund to purchase financial assets such as government securities, commercial paper and corporate bonds in an attempt to stimulate the economy by lowering longer-term interest rates and risk premiums. About 70 percent of the fund will be used to buy long-term government bonds and treasury discount bills.

The central bank will offer another 30 trillion yen ($359 billion) through its loan program.

The rate cut gave an immediate boost to the stock market, with the Nikkei 225 index jumping 1.5 percent to 9,518.76 after spending much of the day in the red.

In the late 1990s Japanese prices were falling at an unacceptable rate.  The BOJ cut rates close to zero, and did a bit of QE.  By 2000 the deflation ended, and the BOJ tightened monetary policy.  This succeeded in preventing any significant inflation from occurring.  Soon after policy was tightened, Japan fell back into deflation.  By 2002 the rate of deflation was unacceptable, and the BOJ again cut rates to zero, and did an even larger QE.  Of course large monetary injections would be highly inflationary, unless the central bank indicates they are temporary.  The BOJ did this by promising not to allow inflation.  When inflation threatened to occur in 2006, the BOJ again tightened monetary policy, raising rates and sharply reducing the monetary base (by roughly 20%.)  This again tipped Japan back into mild deflation.  Because the rate of deflation is once again unacceptably high, the BOJ just announced a series of steps including rate cuts and QE.  As they said, deflation will last another “three or four years”.  When deflation stops, they’ve promised to tighten monetary policy again, and thus create a new bout of deflation. 

Why didn’t they do this 2 years ago?  Good question, I argued they were making a big mistake in late 2008.  But given the Fed and the ECB made exactly the same mistake, I guess we shouldn’t be too hard on the Japanese.  Of course the Fed is also now contemplating actions that they clearly should have taken back in October 2008—when they instead called for fiscal stimulus.

The BOJ doesn’t seem to have changed its underlying monetary regime.  For nearly 2 decades the policy has been consistent; use rate cuts and QE when deflation is more rapid than they’d like, and raise rates and reverse QE when inflation rises to around zero percent.   The policy announcement this morning is completely consistent with this regime.  I hope I am wrong, but I don’t see any evidence the BOJ has learned from their mistakes. 

Still, it is better than nothing.  The Nikkei rose 1.5% on the news, which suggests that it was a bit more than expected, albeit nothing that will significantly change the underlying dynamics.  The BOJ should aim for 3% NGDP growth, instead of the near-zero NGDP growth that has occurred since 1993.

It was 2 years ago this week that the Fed instituted its admittedly contractionary “interest on reserves” program.  The stock market suffered one of its biggest 10 day losses in recent history.   Two years later they are finally getting ready to adopt some stimulus.  Here’s some questions for my fellow macroeconomists, who offered virtually no criticism of the Fed’s contractionary policy of late 2008:

1.   Given the problem of long and variable policy lags, does it make sense to wait until November 2010 to initiate a (probably timid) easy money policy to address a recession that began in December 2007?

2. Why weren’t our prominent macroeconomists demanding a much more expansionary Fed policy in October 2008?

3.  Why were there almost no complaints when the Fed let yields on 5 year TIPS soar from 0.5% in July 2008, to 4.2% in November 2008?

4.  Why were there almost no complaints from our elite macroeconomists when the Fed made no attempt to stop the dollar’s strong appreciation (against the euro) in late 2008?

5.  The Fed called for fiscal stimulus in 2008.  Why weren’t economists asking the Fed:  “If things are so bad we need fiscal stimulus (something not even in the new Keynesian playbook) then why aren’t you making monetary policy more expansionary?”

6.  In 2009 Janet Yellen suggested there was nothing more the Fed could do because rates were at zero.  Why didn’t those economists who are now pressuring the Fed for easier money, criticize Yellen’s statement in 2009?  Why aren’t they saying she’s unqualified to serve on the Federal Reserve Board?

7.  Why do our nation’s prominent macroeconomists keep saying Japan is “stuck” in a liquidity trap, when the BOJ’s words and actions suggest otherwise.


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29 Responses to “Meet the new BOJ, same as the old BOJ”

  1. Gravatar of Liberal Roman Liberal Roman
    5. October 2010 at 03:47

    More music to Scott’s year from Chicago Fed’s Evans:

    http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2010/10/05/qa-chicago-feds-evans-elaborates-on-his-call-for-aggressive-fed-action/

    “price-level targeting could be required: letting inflation run over 2% to “catch up” from an extended low-inflation period.”

    Scott what do you think about the Bank of England’s response to the crisis. It seems like that it has been much more aggressive throughout the crisis and its fiscal policy is becoming more and more supply side oriented. But its recovery has not been all that remarkable.

  2. Gravatar of Benjamin Cole Benjamin Cole
    5. October 2010 at 08:48

    Yet another excellent post by Scott Sumner. It just keeps coming.
    My favorite monetary bull by far!

  3. Gravatar of JimP JimP
    5. October 2010 at 09:00

    Explicit price level targeting, from Charles Evans, who will be a voting member of the board next year.

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703843804575534043689519572.html?mod=WSJ_hps_LEFTTopStories

    begin quote
    The idea espoused by Mr. Evans and Mr. Dudley is known as “price-level targeting.” Inflation is measured as the change in the consumer price index or other price indexes. Rather than target an annual inflation rate of 2%, the Fed would target an inflation index level. So if the consumer price index fell short of the level the Fed targeted one year, it might get back to that level the next year by overshooting a little. It could be a challenge for the Fed to explain such a strategy, and to convince the public that it wouldn’t allow inflation to get completely out of hand.

    Mr. Evans isn’t currently among the five regional Fed bank presidents with a vote on monetary policy. He gets his turn next year.
    end quote

  4. Gravatar of Gregor Bush Gregor Bush
    5. October 2010 at 10:13

    The best news of the day is that there is a regional Fed Bank President whose position on policy is now indistinguishable from that of Scott Sumner. This is a sign of good things to come and I think it’s a big factor behind for the rally today. Scott, you deserve a lot of credit and you’re absolutely correct that mainstream economists have quite a bit to answer for. But I’m heartened to see that policymakers are finally coming around to your view. As a great man once said:

    “The Americans always do the right thing – once all other options have been exhausted.”

    Keep up the good work.

  5. Gravatar of mlb mlb
    5. October 2010 at 10:47

    Stocks in terms of gold are flat/down today. The amount of capital that is going to be wasted in the coming years digging up stores of value and re-storing them is going to be staggering. Monetary policy success!

  6. Gravatar of JimP JimP
    5. October 2010 at 11:37

    The full interview –

    http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2010/10/05/qa-chicago-feds-evans-elaborates-on-his-call-for-aggressive-fed-action/

    begin quote
    Where is the common ground on the committee right now?

    Evans: The statement is fairly clear on that. We see the economy is recovering. We see inflationary pressures lower and we see the unemployment rate high and it is going to be slower to come down. With the funds rate already at zero, there is a pretty valid question as to how accommodative is monetary policy. Some people would point to the size of our balance sheet and say there is an enormous amount of accommodation. Just look at the amount of excess reserves in the system. Milton Friedman looked at the U.S. economy in the 1930s and he saw low interest rates as inadequate accommodation, that there should have been more money creation at that time to support the economy. That wasn’t based upon the narrowest measure of money, like the monetary base or our balance sheet. It was based on broader measures like M1 and M2 and how weak those measures were. I’ve come to the conclusion that conditions continue to be restrictive even though we have a lot of so called accommodation in place. An improvement would be a dramatic increase in bank lending. That would be associated with broader monetary aggregate increases. Then we would begin to see more growth and more inflationary pressures and then that would be a time to be responding.
    end quote

    as the man says – low rates are not a sign of easy money

    Scott wins.

  7. Gravatar of Joe C Joe C
    5. October 2010 at 12:10

    Why is the BOJ more afraid of inflation than deflation? In my relatively short time studying economics I could have sworn that even a little bit of deflation, say -1.0%, is a much worse scenario than inflation of even 5 or 6%.

    Am I missing something here or is the way the BOJ runs monetary policy a cultural thing?

  8. Gravatar of Liberal Roman Liberal Roman
    5. October 2010 at 13:33

    You know I am really starting to worry about the liberal economic profession now.

    Krugman has at least been just apathetic to further Fed actions. Well, Robert Reich and Joseph Stieglitz have come out plainly hostile to further Fed action. I can’t believe that I am writing this but both are Fed hawks.

    See this:

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Fed-ECB-throwing-world-into-rb-424515839.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=6&asset=&ccode=

    http://robertreich.org/post/1224694203

  9. Gravatar of Morgan Warstler Morgan Warstler
    5. October 2010 at 14:30

    Robert Reich has no problem admitting wages are not sticky…

    “Since the start of the Great Recession, millions of working Americans have had to settle for lower wages in order to keep their jobs. (Here at the University of California, the wage cuts are called “furloughs.”)

    Or they’ve lost higher paying jobs and can only find work that pays less.

    Or they’ve lost their benefits. Or their co-pays, deductibles, and premiums have soared. And their employer no longer matches their 401(k) contributions.

    Two-tier wage contracts are the newest vogue in labor relations. Older workers stay at their previous wage; new hires get lower wages and smaller benefits.”

    You can always say that for Reich, he’s honest…

    Scott, he’s saying CLEARLY that Morgan is right! Wages can and will be bashed down.

    I really do like my alternative title for your blog:

    “Papering over economic problems since 2008″

  10. Gravatar of W. Peden W. Peden
    5. October 2010 at 14:48

    Liberal Roman,

    Peter Schiff and Stiglitz may have different reasons for their position, but it amounts to the same thing: the Fed should do nothing, fiscal policy is king. Their sole normative distinction is in what kind of fiscal policy they want, whether it’s balancing the budget or Stimulus Part II.

    They are not the same, but on the most important issue of today (should the Fed engage in monetary stimulus) it is amazing to see both Schiff and Stiglitz in the same bunker.

  11. Gravatar of W. Peden W. Peden
    5. October 2010 at 14:51

    JimP,

    Fascinating quote. It seems to be me that no faithful reader of Milton Friedman can ignore the need for monetary stimulus. Furthermore, not since the old “M0, M1, M2, M3, M4, M8 south of London etc.” debates of the 1980s had the difference between the monetary base and broad money been so important.

    Many economists, having looked solely at the monetary base, have inferred a liquidity trap that doesn’t exist.

    Others, again looking solely at the monetary base, are predicting (and have been predicting for some time now) an era of great inflation or even hyperinflation.

  12. Gravatar of Mark A. Sadowski Mark A. Sadowski
    5. October 2010 at 14:57

    Scott,
    You wrote:
    “The BOJ doesn’t seem to have changed its underlying monetary regime. For nearly 2 decades the policy has been consistent; use rate cuts and QE when deflation is more rapid than they’d like, and raise rates and reverse QE when inflation rises to around zero percent. The policy announcement this morning is completely consistent with this regime. I hope I am wrong, but I don’t see any evidence the BOJ has learned from their mistakes.”

    I’ve been rereading Friedman’s “The Role of Monetary Policy” in advance of tomorrow’s lecture. In one passage Friedman appears to be indifferent to a particular inflation rate target. However later evidence (I believe) changed his mind. Price stickiness alters the shape of the AS curve (pi version) at the lower bound. A positive rate (2%) is better than price stability.

    And you wrote (with my inapproppriate answers):
    “Here’s some questions for my fellow macroeconomists, who offered virtually no criticism of the Fed’s contractionary policy of late 2008:

    1. Given the problem of long and variable policy lags, does it make sense to wait until November 2010 to initiate a (probably timid) easy money policy to address a recession that began in December 2007?”

    Monetary lags are neither variable nor long. Next?

    “2. Why weren’t our prominent macroeconomists demanding a much more expansionary Fed policy in October 2008?”

    They were too busy writing political opeds.

    “3. Why were there almost no complaints when the Fed let yields on 5 year TIPS soar from 0.5% in July 2008, to 4.2% in November 2008?”

    Inflation hawks were too busy howling about the price of food and energy.

    “4. Why were there almost no complaints from our elite macroeconomists when the Fed made no attempt to stop the dollar’s strong appreciation (against the euro) in late 2008?”

    Exchange rates don’t matter. Trade is an insubstantial proportion of our economy. “Real effects” matter more than the asset channel. (Sarcasm clearly intended.)

    “5. The Fed called for fiscal stimulus in 2008. Why weren’t economists asking the Fed: “If things are so bad we need fiscal stimulus (something not even in the new Keynesian playbook) then why aren’t you making monetary policy more expansionary?”

    There are two kind of vocal economists: The wrong (Keynesians), and the wronger (RCB/New Classicist/Austrians). Monetarists are too busy rolling their eyes to comment.

    “6. In 2009 Janet Yellen suggested there was nothing more the Fed could do because rates were at zero. Why didn’t those economists who are now pressuring the Fed for easier money, criticize Yellen’s statement in 2009? Why aren’t they saying she’s unqualified to serve on the Federal Reserve Board?”

    Because they all sent checks to the same congressional committee.(I ought to know becuase I just sent mine to the same place.)

    “7. Why do our nation’s prominent macroeconomists keep saying Japan is “stuck” in a liquidity trap, when the BOJ’s words and actions suggest otherwise.”

    Because it serves each their own interests. Politics determine public opinions on monetary policy more than rationality.

  13. Gravatar of Gregor Bush Gregor Bush
    5. October 2010 at 15:12

    Morgan,
    The question is not whether wages are completely inflexible, of course there is some flexibility. The question is whether they are less flexible than nominal spending. If wages are less flexible, then nominal shocks can generate involuntary unemployment. In 2009 Q2 nominal GDP growth was negative 3.0% but nominal average hourly earnings rose 3.1% over the same period. That’s a huge difference and is largely responsible for the nearly 5 percentage point increase in the unemployment rate (remember also that the working age population grew 1%).

    The extent to which the unemployment rate declines going forward depends on the degree to which NGDP growth outstrips wage+ population growth. So you’re right that slowing wage growth helps at the margin. But wages are still growing at a 2.3% y/y pace. Scott’s solution of faster NGDP growth is the only way to bring unemployment down in a reasonable period of time.

  14. Gravatar of scott sumner scott sumner
    5. October 2010 at 16:00

    Liberal Roman, Thanks, I saw the link from JimP first, but just added your name at the end of my new post.

    Thanks Benjamin. Irving Fisher called his movement in the 1920s the “stable money movement.”

    JimP, Thanks, check out my new post.

    Gregor, Check out my new post.

    mlb, I missed the gold story. Yes, it seems silly to dig all that gold out of the ground and re-bury it in central banks vaults and safety deposit boxes. I sort of hope for a gold price decline, but I have no idea whether it will happen.

    Joe C. I have no idea what’s going on in Japan, nor do I even know whether the people there know what their central bank is doing. The people here don’t so why assume they are any different?

    Liberal Roman, I saw the Stiglitz, but not the Reich. Worth a post if I have time.

    Morgan, I think I prefer the current title of my blog to your suggestion.

    W. Peden, I’m mystified by the progressives who are inflation hawks. What’s that all about?

    Mark, Those are good. I wondered who’d catch me on the long and variable lags. Of course what I really meant was “if you guys believe in long and variable lags. . .”
    But I was too lazy to write it all out, and whenever I hope no one notices, someone does.

    Here’s my take on the real rates:

    Me: Money was tight in 2008.
    They: But rates were low.
    Me: Nominal rates are unreliable.
    They: But then real rates.
    Me: Real rates rose sharply in late 2008.
    They: They did?

  15. Gravatar of Morgan Warstler Morgan Warstler
    5. October 2010 at 16:45

    Gregor, over the long run, our workers have to EARN LESS compared to other workers in other countries.

    As such, I’d prefer, and so does the Fed, that we not inflate away savings in order to ease this shock.

    I think if you look at those wage numbers you’ll see they were driven by:

    1. Public Employees
    2. College graduates – who basically are not facing unemployment.

    #1 is an abomination. #2 is fine and dandy and proves out nicely that this employment issue is actually VERY MUCH structural.

    The question is WHAT can be done for deciles 2-3-4 and 5, because they are the unemployed. (the bottom decile doesn’t work at all).

    So let’s quantify the mistake you a making here:

    If we cut wage of ALL public employees by 25%, we could achieve FULL EMPLOYMENT (4-5%) and pay all the new hires to go dig holes and fill them up.

    Let me say this again: The MIRAGE of Sticky Wages only exists at all because we have not yet gotten out the long knives and torn Public Employees down…

    Summarily cutting their wages SUDDENLY causes a massive falls in wages. And as I keep pointing out… before we drink sand in the MIRAGE, we owe it to ourselves to see if the “starve the beast” model Reagan set into place PAYS OFF.

    We’ve waited 40 years to get here… intelligent minds want to see what happens.

    The final act is upon us… in the face of a severe economic crisis the Right which owns Main Street as thrown a giant Tea Party which could very well spend the next 4-6 years dismantling Public Employees until they are but a shell of their former selves.

    There’s no reason to throw in the towel. We are winning.

  16. Gravatar of 新しい日本銀行に会おう、今まで通りの日本銀行に by Scott Sumner (10/5/2010) – 道草 新しい日本銀行に会おう、今まで通りの日本銀行に by Scott Sumner (10/5/2010) – 道草
    5. October 2010 at 18:38

    [...] 新しい日本銀行に会おう、今まで通りの日本銀行に by Scott Sumner (10/5/2010) // 原文はScott SumnerのブログのOctober 5th, 2010のポスト、Meet the new BOJ, same as the old BOJ APのニュース引用部分は翻訳しません。 [...]

  17. Gravatar of Mark A. Sadowski Mark A. Sadowski
    5. October 2010 at 19:43

    Operation Market Monetary Garden:

    Operation Market Monetary Garden (November 17–25, 2010) was an Allied monetary operation, fought in the U.S. and the E.U. in the Second Monetary War. It was the largest airborne operation of drop cash of all time.

    The operation plan’s strategic context required the seizure of bridges across the Maas (Meuse River) and two arms of the Rhine (the Waal and the Lower Rhine) as well as several smaller canals and tributaries. Crossing the Lower Rhine would allow the Allies to outflank the Siegfried Line and encircle the Ruhr, Germany’s industrial heartland. It made large-scale use of airborne monetary forces whose tactical objectives were to secure a series of bridges over the main rivers of the German-occupied Netherlands and allow a rapid advance by armoured monetary units into Northern Germany.

    Initially the operation was successful and several bridges between Eindhoven and Nijmegen were captured. However the ground force’s advance was delayed by the demolition of a bridge over the Wilhelmina Canal at Son, delaying the capture of the main road bridge over the Meuse until September 20. At Arnhem the British 1st Airborne Division encountered far stronger resistance than anticipated. In the ensuing battle only a small force managed to hold one end of the Arnhem road bridge and after the ground forces failed to relieve them they were overrun on the 21st. The rest of the division, trapped in a small pocket west of the bridge, had to be evacuated on the 25th. The Allies had failed to cross the Rhine in sufficient force, and the Rhine remained a barrier to their advance until the offensives at Remagen, Oppenheim, Rees and Wesel in March 2011. The failure of Market Garden ended Allied expectations of finishing the war in 2010.

  18. Gravatar of Mark A. Sadowski Mark A. Sadowski
    5. October 2010 at 19:56

    Video Representation:
    http://www.fancast.com/movies/A-Bridge-Too-Far/17578/1207042881/A-Bridge-Too-Far—-Original-Trailer/videos

  19. Gravatar of Morgan Warstler Morgan Warstler
    5. October 2010 at 23:38

    Mark, let’s just make sure you are VOTING Republican. Otherwise, out yourself, so I can stop reading what you write.

    It won’t take long to see if “starve the beast” works – and so far things look great!

    But Ronnie deserves this moment after the election, where we try and let the world see HOW QUICKLY we throw out the advocates of new social safety nets.

    Its far too interesting to see if we are a new better kind of people than out grand parents.

    THEN IF Republicans don’t dismantle public employees OR they do, but it doesn’t effect the markets…

    I SWEAR I’ll stand next to you and scream QE2!

    But bigger thinkers than we have set the activities around us into motion long ago… and it is time to see who blinks.

    Reset your imaginary calendar for 6 months further… and we’ll see whats what.

  20. Gravatar of Joe Calhoun Joe Calhoun
    6. October 2010 at 05:16

    Scott,
    You advocate more monetary stimulus which implies a lower value for the dollar and you “hope” for a decline in gold prices but have no idea whether it will happen? I’d say if you get your way the odds of gold declining in dollar terms is pretty low.

  21. Gravatar of jj jj
    6. October 2010 at 07:56

    You need to look at the micro foundations, Scott. Most economists are tenured professors. Deflation is in their personal best interest!

  22. Gravatar of JeffreyY JeffreyY
    6. October 2010 at 08:28

    Scott, what do you think of an NGDP/capita level target? Since Japan’s population is basically flat, while the U.S.’s grows at 1%/year, the same per-capita NGDP growth rate would be 1% off when looked at as an NGDP rate. Of course, you’re proposing an NGDP target for Japan that’s 2% less than the one you propose for the U.S., so you’re already taking that into account (along with another % from somewhere), but it would feel less ad-hoc if there were some rule that applied universally.

  23. Gravatar of Luis H Arroyo Luis H Arroyo
    6. October 2010 at 10:52

    Good point. Specially, if we take into account the incresing public debt/GDP, it is atonishing they nor prevent NGDP of falling.

  24. Gravatar of Mark A. Sadowski Mark A. Sadowski
    6. October 2010 at 20:58

    Morgan,
    You wrote:
    “Mark, let’s just make sure you are VOTING Republican. Otherwise, out yourself, so I can stop reading what you write.”

    Evidently I have been far too subtle. I am indeed a hard core Democrat. The day I vote Republican will probably coincide with the day the Republican Party leadership adopts a fiscally coherent policy (which is to say when hell freezes over).

    P.S. By the way the choice for the U.S. Senate here in Delaware is between Coons and O’Donnell. Since I don’t believe in witchcraft or that a public stand on masturbation is of critical importance you know for whom I’ll be voting (as will the vast majority of my fellow Delawareans).

    P.P.S. What does any of this have to dowith the proper conduct of monetary policy?

  25. Gravatar of scott sumner scott sumner
    7. October 2010 at 05:21

    Mark, Yes, a currency assault on Germany would be very helpful. Great comment!

    Morgan, Non-voting Republicans are also allowed to read my blog.

    Joe, Why? Deflationary policies have pushed gold up–why can’t inflationary policies push it down. Remember, if I get my way, the monetary base will eventually fall back to normal, and interest rates will eventually be HIGHER than otherwise.

    jj, Yeah, but they were also tenured in the 1960s, when most favored inflation. So it must be more complicated.

    JeffreyY, Yes, the per capita target is better. I fail to mention it for simplicity (and because in practice population growth doesn’t vary much year to year.)

    Luis, Yes, it’s amazing.

  26. Gravatar of Mark A. Sadowski Mark A. Sadowski
    8. October 2010 at 18:25

    Scott,
    You wrote:
    “Mark, Yes, a currency assault on Germany would be very helpful. Great comment!”

    As general Browning said:
    “We shall seize the bridges – it’s all a question of bridges – with thunderclap SURPRISE!, and hold them until they can be secured.”

    Yes, Scott, a great surprise monetary operation is what we must undertake. I’m waiting with baited breath. I know when the time comes for the command it will be your voice I listen for.

  27. Gravatar of Mark A. Sadowski Mark A. Sadowski
    8. October 2010 at 18:47

    Scott,
    It’s only fair that I tell you my father was a special forces paratrooper and that he lost his best friend at Arnhem. My middle name comes from that man: Adrian. In any case the Ryan novel and the subsequent movie were a big hit in my family.

  28. Gravatar of ssumner ssumner
    9. October 2010 at 05:55

    Mark, When you hear “let’s roll” then pack your bags.

  29. Gravatar of Mark A. Sadowski Mark A. Sadowski
    9. October 2010 at 15:57

    Scott,
    You wrote:
    “Mark, When you hear “let’s roll” then pack your bags.”

    My bags have been packed for near on two years now. The sooner the better. Let’s roll!

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