At the heart of the current U. S. mortgage crisis are a variety of players that include circa 2006 home buyers with houses they couldn’t really afford, mortgage brokers who sold mortgages to people they knew couldn’t afford them, banks who turned those mortgages into securities that were bound to (in some cases designed to) fail, all held together with bureaucratic glue made almost entirely of testosterone and bullshit, and decorated with robo-signers and lost documents by the millions. Old news, right? But who would have thought we’d see many of the same behaviors emerge around one crappy refrigerator from Home Depot?

My friend Ralph owns that crappy fridge, an LG model based on a Whirlpool […]