Question: Why is deflation so bad? I have certainly benefited from the drop in gas prices, so I wonder what is wrong with things becoming cheaper in general? And wouldn’t that make up for previous inflation? Paul Solman: Another good…

Question: When we hear comparisons between today’s economy and that of the Great Depression, I wonder: Had as many people and institutions been as highly leveraged then as now? Were personal and institutional debt as high then as they are…

Question: Why were pension funds allowed to “invest” in a hedge fund? Hedge funds are nothing more than gambling. Paul Solman: Because pension funds are supposedly big enough and therefore sophisticated enough to know what they’re doing and take considered…

Question/Comment: Could you explain where all the money went that supposedly vanished during the Wall Street meltdown? Who has it? Was it imaginary or did it really exist? Paul Solman: All Wall Street values are imaginary. All money is imaginary.

Question/Comment: I’m confused by the term “real economy.” Lots of people are using it, but no one has explained it that I can find. It’s something different than what Wikipedia defines as not the “virtual economy.” What’s going on?…

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