Greenspan admits he 'made a mistake'
He thought he could trust free markets to regulate themselves without government oversight.
Turns out he was wrong.
In testimony today before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, this disciple of Ayn Rand and ardent proponent of deregulation during his 18-year tenure as Federal Reserve chairman said:
"I made a mistake in presuming that the self-interests of organizations, specifically banks and others, were such as that they were best capable of protecting their own shareholders and their equity in the firms."
So now he's in "a state of shocked disbelief" about the financial meltdown. I guess that's what happens when someone so powerful finds his lifelong ideology colliding with the real world.
Sad for him, but so much sadder for the countless Americans who have lost their jobs, had their houses foreclosed and seen their retirement savings melt away before their eyes.
And that's not the worst of it. According to Greenspan, he "cannot see how we will avoid a significant rise in layoffs and unemployment," as well as a decline in consumer spending which will last until home prices stabilize, and who knows when that will be?