The Wall Street Journal has a soft spot for Joseph "Jay" W. Brown the once -- and once again CEO of MBIA, the world's largest bond insurer and insurer of much dubious paper at unreliable values. I've posted on The Spine about his company several times, and particularly about how it and another company (AMBAC, on its way to the graveyard where Enron now is buried) cooperated with the three ratings agencies (Moody's, S & P, Fitch) to dish out truly false AAA grades. False? Aren't I being rough? Much of the junk now under water had just those evaluations. Brown is one of those on whom responsibility falls for the current flood.

I wondered why, when MBIA showed early signs of expiring (which I believe it will still do, perhaps when it releases its earnings or losses in roughly a month), it went back to Brown to dig it out of the muck. One answer is that he knows all the secrets of the rapacious and dirty work it did. It will not help.

Look at his interview with Llam Pleven in The Wall Street Journal and you'll see that he is a "tout va bien" person.