In the Battle for Big Ideas

It was Maria who had the final word: The aim of Occupy is to think for yourself. We don t focus on solutions. We want to change the process of finding solutions. The crowd roared its approval and surged towards the stage. I made a hasty exit through a secret door in the kitchen and out into the night. But Davos will never again be the same for me. There can be no retreat in the battle for big ideas.

–Stephen S. Roach, A Veteran Wall-Streeter Confronts the Occupy Movement, Financial Times, 29 January 2012

Steve Roach retired from Morgan Stanley, today. Three decades on, he lectures at Yale where he has re-affirmed the value of a “quality B.”

The above is part and just a part of his brilliant FT opus to a very-occupied Davos. Others talk; Roach does. While the elite greeted at the Piano Bar, Roach represented “Economics” in front of the distressed exploited.

He will continue his unique economics at Yale. He will continue with profound respect for the balance-sheet distortions of income-statement politics. He will continue understanding that “We were all responsible for this crisis” as he whispered a few years ago in front of Engle, Taleb, and the assembled Rolexed as singular blame was tossed here and there.

Stephen Roach invented in-house, sharp and collegial debate in market economics. He changed the process of how we discuss and debate our finding of solutions.

And second to none, he led, and ever leads, the charge up the hill in the battle for big ideas. Discuss.

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