Warren Buffett has described himself and Berkshire Hathaway as a net "beneficiary" of the government's extraordinary actions during the financial crisis. Yesterday, Mr. Buffett got together with Henry Paulson, who, as Treasury secretary, helped to sideline some Berkshire competitors while bailing out some Berkshire investments, to praise Mr. Paulson and to help Mr. Paulson sell some copies of his book. These guys are sure pushing their own narrative of the financial crisis -- that government activism heroically averted what could have been a much worse outcome -- over the competing narrative -- that government activism made things worse. If CNBC sent Lloyd Blankfein out to interview Mr. Paulson about his new book, it'd be laughed at, or at least questioned about the appropriateness of it. But Mr. Buffett has a way of being seen as kind of floating above the fray, rather than an interested financial player himself. Not to mention that the whole thing is being aired and touted on CNBC, which, for now, is still a unit of GE, which got its own bailout from Mr. Paulson.
Buffett and Paulson