Tonight at 9 eastern Frontline’s new documentary “Inside The Meltdown” will debut on PBS and online. We’ve only seen the trailer, but the press release makes it sound like the scariest documentary in the history of the universe.
Within 24 hours, the stock market crashed, and credit markets around the world froze. “We’re no longer talking about mortgages,” says economist Gertler. “We’re talking about car loans, loans to small businesses, commercial paper borrowing by large banks. This is like a disease spreading.”
“I think that the secretary of the Treasury could not fully comprehend what that linkage was and the extent to which this would materialize into problems,” says former Lehman board member Henry Kaufman.
Paulson was thunderstruck. “This is the utter nightmare of an economic policy-maker,” Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman tells FRONTLINE. “You may have just made the decision that destroyed the world. Absolutely terrifying moment.”
FRONTLINE Presents Inside the Meltdown [Frontline]