March 18 (Bloomberg) -- A series of jokes uses the actor Chuck Norris, martial artist and star of the television program “Walker, Texas Ranger,” as a paragon of omnipotence. “Guns don’t kill people, Chuck Norris kills people,” goes one. “Chuck Norris doesn’t get wet, water gets Chuck Norris,” goes another.
Similar thinking can be applied to financial markets. Here, then, is an update of financial issues recast as Chuck’s world.
Chuck Norris keeps a pet vampire squid in his bathtub. He feeds it $100 bills that U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner passed to him in a plain brown envelope marked “American International Group Inc. Credit-Default Swaps Settlement at Par -- Open In Case of Emergency.”
Chuck Norris would NEVER dry heave in times of stress.
Chuck Norris trades Repo 105 transactions with the Federal Reserve, except Chuck only pays 104, and his U.S. auditors have signed off on them as true sales.
Chuck Norris tried to buy both UBS AG and ABN Amro Holding NV in the boom years. But he doesn’t work for Barclays Capital, so he doesn’t now wander around telling regulators how they should leave him alone because he was smart enough to survive the credit crunch.
Chuck Norris got paid his bonus for a stint working at AIG Financial Products. In full.
Chuck Norris doesn’t need to move his headquarters to Switzerland; he declared his sitting room the 27th canton, called it Chuckwalden, and set up his hedge fund on the coffee table, safe from those pesky tax inspectors.
Chuck Norris already sees all movies and TV shows in 3-D, without those silly plastic spectacles (which, incidentally, he owns the patent for).
Chuck Norris is the only trader that Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. hand more collateral to than they take.
Chuck Norris has been using an Apple Inc. iPad for more than a year. In 3-D. His book on the credit crunch will be available exclusively through the iTunes store.
Chuck Norris plays golf with Tiger Woods most weekends; Chuck lets his girlfriend caddy for Tiger. Naturally, Chuck totes his own bag. And wins by two holes.
Chuck Norris will be the senior adviser to Sarah Palin on her forthcoming U.S. presidential election. Unless Eliot Spitzer runs. Or Richard Fuld.
So long as Chuck Norris resides in the U.S., Moody’s Investors Service and Standard & Poor’s have pledged to maintain the nation’s AAA credit rating. The Greek government, though, has asked Chuck to move to Athens. Chuck might move to London instead, though even he admits that won’t be enough to save the U.K. from a rating downgrade.
U.S. President Barack Obama has asked Chuck Norris to fill all three of the vacant seats on the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.
Chuck Norris bought credit-default-swap protection against a U.S. default when it traded at 20 basis points, and sold at 60 basis points. He’s buying again at 30.
The only way China’s yuan will be allowed to strengthen against the dollar is if Chuck Norris roundhouse kicks it higher.
(Mark Gilbert, author of “Complicit: How Greed and Collusion Made the Credit Crisis Unstoppable,” is the London bureau chief and a columnist for Bloomberg News. The opinions expressed are his own.)
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