Before jumping into this week's Talking Squawk—the official blog of everything "Squawk Box"—I want to belatedly welcome everyone back. Yes, the blog has been on hiatus for a few weeks, while I sat on a beach and rebooted my mind, body and spirit. But we're back and noticed that this will be the 20th installment—a "historic occasion" for which I wish to personally thank all of my reader(s) individually. Thanks, Mom!
5 years later ...
There's probably no one better to reflect on the 2008 financial crisis than Hank Paulson.
He was Treasury secretary during the crisis and helped engineer the then-$700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP)—the bailout credited with preventing the collapse of the financial system.
On "Squawk Box" Friday, he described the crisis as a 100-year storm, and that no one involved in it had ever seen anything like it.
Welcome back, Sandy Weill
A little over a year ago, Sandy Weill—the guy who came up with the full-service, one-stop-shop financial megamall idea—came on "Squawk Box" and shocked us (and Wall Street) by saying the big banks should break up.
Thirteen months later, the former Citigroup boss came back Tuesday and revised that view to some extent—pointing his efforts and thoughts more toward working on getting the right regulations in place, so the banks won't have to split.
Check out the interview, and you can decide for yourself where he really stands (because I'm not sure anymore).
Changing the World
Weill helped us launch a new segment on "Squawk Box" this week.
Called "Change the World," it's a way to profile major philanthropic gifts and contributions some of our guests make in an effort to, you guessed it, change the world.
Weill told us that he and his wife, Joan, are making an additional $100 million donation to Weill Cornell Medical College.
(Read more from Weill: Hey Jamie, call me maybe)
Twitter taking the plunge
Yeah! Twitter is going public.
But remember how fun the Facebook IPO was?
The stock tanked.
The Nasdaq practically crashed.
Investors were furious.
Boy, sounds like we have so much to look forward to!
iPhone 5S and 5C ('S'ame 'C'rap?")
What do you do when you really have nothing new to say?
Say the same thing and do it with a bigger smile.
With nothing really that new—no watch, no TV—Apple CEO Tim Cook held basically the same event he did when he launched the iPhone 5 and (like with the iPhone 4) slapped an "S" on the end.
The joke? The "S" stands for "same."
It will look like the plain old iPhone 5, but I guess it'll be able read my fingerprints and take a better picture—for the standard, carrier-subsidized starting price of $199.
Or we can take a stand and say, "No way Apple. I'm not falling for it!"
But Apple's too fast for us, already anticipating our doubt. That's why it announced another new iPhone! It's less powerful and less expensive—a carrier-subsidized starting price of $99. And the brand guys worked for months for a new name: the iPhone 5… (drum roll please) "C."
"C" for cheap! "C" for colorful! "C" for crap?!
Now that's innovation!
Unfortunately, the only thing most of really want with our iPhone is a better battery. But that innovation was nowhere to be seen this week.
Just call Elon Musk already—he'll figure it out!
Here's a report card on the job Cook is doing via "Steve Jobs" author Walter Isaacson.
What do 200 fired-up economists marching on Washington, fist-in-the-air, bellowing a "Jan-et Yell-en" chant sound like? I have no idea and I'm sorry I even brought it up. But one of those angry economists called in this week to make his case.
OK, fine, one more time, everybody … "JAN-ET YELL-EN!"
Squawkward moment (on Andrew Ross Sorkin being late to work because of delays on the George Washington Bridge on Thursday)
Joe Kernen: Look who made it to work! A little hung? I mean hung-over.
Andrew: Um, yes, a little ...
Becky Quick: A little What!?
Joe: Yes that's right. I asked if he was "hung" ... "over"
News tidbits you can (kind-of) use
And as Joe points out, let's hope these picks fare better than when they put AIG in right before the financial crisis.
Poor Jim, only on "Squawk Box" could we introduce him by listing off the top 10 "women in prison" movies (which was a continuation of Andrew's foot-in-mouth disease from the previous segment).
Sorry, Jim, but this is classic Andrew!
Squawkward moment (discussing how much it would cost to rent the suite in the movie "The Hangover" with Caesars CEO Gary Loveman)
Joe: So can I get that room with the animals and the tigers? I guess in my case it would be sheep. Are you going to bill me extra for the animals?
(Read more from Caesars CEO: This is why Atlantic City won't catch Las Vegas)
Earnings on tap
It's a quiet week of oddball companies that can't seem to keep a normal fiscal corporate calendar along with the rest of us.
Michael Novogratz of Fortress Investment Group is a good friend of the show and a huge fan of Olympic Wrestling. On Monday, his efforts (along with many others) to get wrestling back into the Olympic Games became a dream realized. You don't want to get on this guy's bad side. He bench presses, like, 400 pounds!
Tweets of Note
Hair nation (courtesy of Director @pauldefabo and technical director @keith_falcone (with his 10 whole Twtitter followers)
It's our way of passing time in the control room. Joe's face placed on innocent, unsuspecting guests who truly deserve better. This week, we're not sure if Joe was trying to be Santa Claus or AIG CEO Robert Benmosche, or auditioning for a role in the "The Amish Mafia." But we're pretty sure Benmosche will not be in a rush to return to CNBC after he sees this.
Must follow them @
Let's throw some bones to the underappreciated "Squawk Box" production team. (Please follow them so they return to their homes with a higher sense of job satisfaction, thus they'll stay around longer, work longer harder hours with no pay increases, smiles on their faces, all while making my life easier.)
We could also help boost the Twitter followers of Squawkers Anne Tironi, Klaire Odumody and Melody Hahm if they were on Twitter, but they're not so they lose.
Tastes like chicken
This is the only news program on TV that can discuss recipes from the world championship squirrel cook-off and what would have happened if the government had saved Lehman Brothers in the same segment. It's pure TV production brilliance. They teach this stuff in college TV classes. You have to watch it to believe it.
Go RU!? (Joe to the CEO of Caesars ...)
Joe to Caesars CEO Loveman: "I am getting inundated by questions from the guys on the staff here interested in sports betting in New Jersey. Is it coming to the Garden State? Apparently they all want to bet against Rutgers." Watch Loveman's answer.
It's been a while since we last updated you on Becky and Joe's eight-year jumble competition. But everyone is back from vacation and the seemingly endless daily contest can now continue.
It was a good week for Becky, who won three times to Joe's one.
Words Joe stumbled on when jumbled: RUGHYN=hungry and TAREYE=eatery
Let's give them both a bonus word:
Joe's bonus Jumbled word of the week: GNRAIWM
Becky's bonus jumbled word of the week: GUDEAPR
*Answers at the end
Mark your calendar (or set your DVR)
Next week's Eeconomic calendar
The "corny-sappy motivational business-based inspirational suote" for the weekend
A man should never neglect his family for business.
*Joe's Jumble Bonus Word answer: GNRAIWM=warming
*Becky's Jumble Bonus Word Answer: GUDEAPR=upgrade