...[A]s you may remember, Buffett recently took a high-profile stake in Goldman Sachs.
An investment in Goldman Sachs and Wells Fargo is a bet that, first, the world economy won't really collapse, and second, the government won't get mad and take your money. There's no reason to believe that Warren Buffett, or anyone else, has any good way to assess the probability of those beliefs.
Buffett makes his money by buying low and selling high. He's patient and long-lived. If he bought Goldman Sachs he believes it is currently priced low and will in time be high. It's not very intelligent to look at data, draw the inevitable conclusion, and then state the opposite of what it tells you. You have to assume that Buffett suddenly abandoned a life-time practice and utterly ignored the revolving door between the government and Goldman Sachs. If anyone will come out of the New Depression successfully it will be Goldman Sachs.
It would be nice if McArdle ratcheted down the snooze factor in her work. I'm thrilled she's enjoying Chrysler's bankruptcy so much, but there are other interesting things going on as well.