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posted: 8/28/2011 5:00 AM

Don't trust agencies that rate credit

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According to the geniuses over at Standard & Poor's, the likelihood of the U.S. to pay its debt obligations is now on par with Virginia Beach and Tulsa. We're not quite as secure as Columbus, Ohio, or Indy (both AAA). Does that seem logical? Couldn't an eighth-grader, with even just a small interest in government, figure out that the only reason we got so close to a supposed default was political posturing and media hype?

I'm not sure why anyone listens to these rating agencies anyway. Aren't these the same financial wizards who rated bundled, subprime mortgages a AAA? Aren't these people cogs in the same wheel that brought the world to its knees in 2008 -- and part of the insider industry that is still almost completely unregulated? How do I go about downgrading my trust in S&P and Moody's?

Colin Barr

Arlington Heights