Sunday, June 03, 2007

Ways of a Da Ren (Great Man)

NEW YORK (Reuters) - "Former US Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan promised on Friday to deliver surprises and insights about the future in an eagerly awaited book, but he gave little away for now beyond saying interest rates were low.

The book, to be published by Penguin on September 17, will examine his 18-1/2 years at the helm of the U.S. central bank.

Greenspan, who can still move markets with the slightest word, said he would bring to bear the lessons learned steering the world's biggest economy to discuss his views on the future in the book to be published in September.

He spoke warmly of Sarkozy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Britain's finance minister, Gordon Brown, who is due to take over from Prime Minister Tony Blair on June 27.

"I think we're going to find the three of them hold a very great deal in common, which is going to mold a new Europe that is going to move in a more vibrant way," Greenspan said. "It's the first good sign I've seen about the long-term future of Europe."

Commenting on his past as Fed chief, Greenspan gave unusual insights into the often opaque style of communication that became his trademark in testimony before Congress.

"I got people asking questions that I couldn't and shouldn't answer because there are certain answers no matter how you phrase them and what you do have a market effect," he said.

"I found that where I got a question and got myself into a position where I didn't, couldn't and was not going to answer, I fell back into lapsed syntax and all sorts of ways in which the senator or congressman would think I was saying something terribly profound and think I answered his question."

He also said he proposed to his wife, Mitchell, five times before she realized what he was asking her."

Excerpts from:

Those familiar with Confucian and Daoist studies may agree that Mr. Greenspan is one of those Da Ren that had helped shaped and influenced the economies of the world as chief of the US Central Bank.

In the interview, his modesty shines through when he praised the three new leaders of Europe. His caution in the choice of words when testifying before Congress was not dissimilar with the advice of the ancients – Laozi, Confucius, and Buddha.

Through his words and actions, it shows that he is benevolent and cares about the US and the world.

Just as indicated by Confucius, many a Junzi would stand in awe of such a Da Ren?

In line with the wisdoms depicted in the Great Image, and the thoughts of the ancients, perhaps these images can aptly describe Mr. Greenspan’s proper conduct and great achievements:

Within the earth, a mountain: The image of Modesty. Thus the superior man reduces that which is too much, and augments that which is too little. He weighs things and makes them equal.

Thunder and wind: the image of Duration. Thus the superior man stands firm and does not change his direction.

That which is bright rises twice: The image of Fire. Thus the great man, by perpetuating this brightness, illumines the four quarters of the world.

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