Tags: Buffett Writes Open Thank-You Letter to U.S. Government in New York Times

Buffett Praises US Effort to Curb 2008 Financial Crisis

Wednesday, 17 Nov 2010 07:43 AM

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett wrote an open “thank-you” letter in today’s New York Times, saying the U.S. government’s intervention in the financial crisis had stopped many companies from going under, saved millions of jobs and restored calm.

He singled out Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and his predecessor, Hank Paulson, and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Chairman Sheila Bair for praise. He added that although he’d never voted for President George W. Bush, he gave him credit for acting as Congress dithered.

The U.S., he wrote, had been gripped by a “mass delusion” that house prices would never fall significantly — “delusions produce bubbles ... this bubble was a doozy and its pop was felt around the world,” Buffett added.

"My own company, Berkshire Hathaway, might have been the last to fall, but that distinction provided little solace," Buffett said.

"Nor was it just business that was in peril: 300 million Americans were in the domino line as well. Just days before, the jobs, income, 401(k)’s and money-market funds of these citizens had seemed secure. Then, virtually overnight, everything began to turn into pumpkins and mice. There was no hiding place. A destructive economic force unlike any seen for generations had been unleashed," he wrote.

"Only one counterforce was available, and that was you, Uncle Sam," he said.

"You have been criticized, Uncle Sam, for some of the earlier decisions that got us in this mess — most prominently, for not battling the rot building up in the housing market. But then few of your critics saw matters clearly either. In truth, almost all of the country became possessed by the idea that home prices could never fall significantly."

Buffett wrote that often the government was wasteful, bullying, and sometimes “downright maddening. But in this extraordinary emergency, you came through — and the world would look far different now if you had not.”

He signed the missive “Your grateful nephew, Warren.”

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Billionaire investor Warren Buffett wrote an open thank-you letter in today s New York Times, saying the U.S. government s intervention in the financial crisis had stopped many companies from going under, saved millions of jobs and restored calm. He singled out Federal...
Buffett Writes Open Thank-You Letter to U.S. Government in New York Times
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2010-43-17
Wednesday, 17 Nov 2010 07:43 AM
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