‘Rules, Not Rulers’

This article is from the archive of The New York Sun before the launch of its new website in 2022. The Sun has neither altered nor updated such articles but will seek to correct any errors, mis-categorizations or other problems introduced during transfer.

The New York Sun

Amity Shlaes was spot on with her recent column [Oped, “Rules, Not Rulers,” September 17, 2008]. She made a strong case for three sensible rules-based reforms for the financial markets and fiscal policy. To these I would add repeal or reform to two recent rule changes.

First, the accounting change to “mark to market” unmarketable assets does nothing but distort by producing large paper losses, part of which in the long run would probably be reversed by large paper profits if companies were not forced by this distortion to sell at low prices to bolster “capital” reduced by the mark downs — see Merrill Lynch.

Second, the Securities and Exchange Commission must reinstate the “uptick” rule that requires an uptick in a stock price before a short sale can be executed. Hedge funds pushed hard to get this obstacle to market manipulation removed and have reaped enormous rewards in the bear raids of the last few months.

Chairman Cox of the SEC has pushed some relatively unenforceable short sale changes and was quoted in the Sun a few days ago that an uptick of one cent would not be effective and an uptick of a nickel would be too onerous for traders. Someone should inform the chairman that an uptick of 12 1/2 cents was required for decades.


Morristown, N.J.

‘One School Feels Effects of N.Y. Baby Boom’

I read with interest a recent article by Elizabeth Green about the baby boom in lower Manhattan [New York, “One School Feels Effects of N.Y. Baby Boom,” September 15, 2008].

I want to make sure that readers who are contemplating moving out of the city or sending their children to live with grandmothers in other states should review the map of New York City.

Across New York Harbor on a beautiful, verdant campus of 12 acres sits a 125 year old, non-sectarian, private, not-for-profit school with a fabulous kindergarten program that has space for additional, bright, motivated children.

We have no mosh-pit atmosphere, we do not need to schedule bathroom trips to manage crowd control, and our parents are not in a panic.

Our playground is in a grove of stately oaks. Our classrooms are full of sunlight and poetry. Our tennis courts and soccer fields are beautifully groomed and not shared with anyone else.

Our swimming program, sunflower garden, and ninth grade curricular trip to London are the antithesis of the frenetic energy of the Financial District.

Wholesome and centered children abound at Staten Island Academy.


Head of School

Staten Island Academy

Staten Island, N.Y.

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