November 14, 2007

Warren Buffett testifies today!

First off, there was this in the WSJ suggesting Buffett may be the savior of the collateralized debt obligation market...

In recent weeks, every major bond insurer has reached out to Berkshire -- owner of a range of companies including reinsurer General Re Corp. and auto insurer Geico -- as a source of capital relief while their financial strength comes under scrutiny by ratings firms and investors, according to these people. In the process of pleading their cases with Berkshire, these companies provide Mr. Buffett with opportunities to size up their businesses.

"Fear has moved away from hurricanes and is now moving into the financial markets," said Glenn Tongue, a partner at T2 Partners LLC, a New York hedge fund that owns Berkshire Hathaway shares. "Warren Buffett can make a lot of money from fear," he said.

And then there was this...

Warren Buffett has said it before and he's likely to say it again to Congress on Wednesday: He thinks the heirs of the wealthy should be taxed on their inheritance.

Buffett, one of the world's richest men and now its biggest philanthropist, has been an outspoken critic of efforts to repeal the estate tax and is scheduled to testify at a Senate Finance Committee hearing on how current law affects estate tax planning.

The man is richer and smarter than every Republican in the Senate. It would be nice if they'd actually listen to someone who was successful instead of people who made their money off shareholders.

"Without the estate tax, you in effect will have an aristocracy of wealth, which means you pass down the ability to command the resources of the nation based on heredity rather than merit," Buffett told the New York Times in 2001. "[Repeal would be like] choosing the 2020 Olympic team by picking the eldest sons of the gold-medal winners in the 2000 Olympics."

Exactly.

Posted by mcblogger at November 14, 2007 12:27 AM

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