'Nationalize' the Banks

Published on by The Inquirer

Nouriel Roubini

Dr. Doom says a takeover and resale is the market-friendly solution.

[The Weekend Interview]

New York


Nouriel Roubini is always dressed in black-and-white.

I have known him for nearly two years, and have seen him in a variety of situations -- en route to class at New York University's Stern Business School, where he's a professor; over a glass of wine in his boyish loft in Manhattan's Tribeca; at an academic conference, seated sagely on the dais; at a bohemian party in Greenwich Village, at . . . oh . . . 3 a.m. -- and he always, always wears a black suit with a white linen shirt.And so, in black-and-white he was, earlier this week, when he rushed into the office of Roubini Global Economics, his consulting firm in downtown Manhattan, and offered a breathless apology to this correspondent, who'd been waiting for half an hour. "Really sorry I'm late! Charlie Rose taped for way longer than he said he would."
Mr. Roubini -- a month short of 50 -- is in huge media demand, the nearest thing to a rock-star among the economists
who hold our fate in their hands these days. The peculiar thing, of course, is that he's in demand because he specializes
in predictions of gloom. (He has earned himself the sobriquet of "Doctor Doom.") In person, though, he's anything but a downer.                                                                                                
      Terry Shoffner

The man has instant impact on public debate. An idea he floated only last week -- that our "zombie banks" be temporarily nationalized -- aired first on Forbes.com, where he writes a weekly column. It has evolved, in the space ofjust a few days, from radical solution to almost received wisdom.

                                                                                                                                                 

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