"The main thing about money, Bud, makes you do things you don't want to do."
- Lou Manhiem, Wall Street
Money is one of the foundational inventions that makes civilization possible. It enables the efficient transfer of
value from one person to another and a way to store value that doesn't take up much room and wont rot away.
Perhaps it's most amazing function, money can work as artificial co-operation. When someone has an idea for
a big project thats a little hard to imagine the benefits of, money makes it happen.
Go back to 1889, gather a thousand men in a muddy field and explain to them how, if they spend 5 years
building a giant factory where they are standing, then 5 more in that factory making a thousand copies of
your 'automobile' invention, they could all be riding those around instead of horses.
See? It does not work. There has to be some way to motivate people to work on stuff that's not going to be of
near term benefit to them. You may be able to get a hand full of your best buds to co-operate on something
relatively small, but the big projects that make up our civilization require money to work.
Unfortunately, the invention is not perfect. It has a dark side.
The same compactness and mobility that make it work also make it easy to steal. Every idea ever
intended to improve it's efficiency also made it easier to steal larger & larger amounts.
It is supposed to be like oil in a machine, not the reason the machine exists. Banks are only supposed to help
move and store money, not be a money making venture in themselves. The entire financial system is supposed
to be like plumbing - the pipes and valves that get the fluid to where it needs to go, not a wealth
Money is supposed to work for us, not be our boss.
We are living with the consequenses of allowing our invention to run amok.
There is an ocean of money floating way up in the stratosphere that us ordinary people can hardly see,
let alone reach. It's that BIG MONEY we only see on TV, so it doesn't seem real to us.
We only know it's there, we don't feel it. We don't really believe in it.
It's in the same fantasy world as I Dream of Jeannie.
But it really is there.
We see only glimpses of it with stories of Bill Clinton getting a million bucks to talk for an hour.
Lebron James getting a 77,000,000$ contract. Angelina Jolie getting 30,000,000$ for 1 movie. Bill Gates
on his way to becoming the first trillionaire.
Aside from the celebrities, we only see a hand full of names occasionally mentioned in the financial news.
We do not know the names of hundreds of super rich individuals, thousands of hedge fund managers,
countless overpaid corporate executives and myriad rich for whatever people.
That ocean was created by greedy people with lots of money figuring out increasingly complex and effective
ways to use money to extract more & more from everybody else. They long ago perfected the art & science
of making the wealth created by the workers of the world vanish before we are even aware that it exists,
immediatly materializing in their pockets, only occasionally visible to the rest of us as mind boggling
numbers, lavish lifestyles and crazy expensive merchandise.
A question that I have never heard asked by the media or any politician is this:
What Herculean effort producing what astounding accomplishment resulting in what incredible benefit
to our society can any of these super rich individuals claim to justify the amount of wealth
they have taken from all of us?
We already know the answer is none, so now another question presents itself: What good is the system
that makes their wealth grabbing possible?
Again, we know the answer is none. 'They' will launch into long explanations concerning
capitalism, free trade, supply & demand, market forces, etc. etc. etc. Their condescending lecture will
be full of quotes from PhD experts and long dead theorists to remind you that you are
nobody to be questioning them! But really, it will only add up to how it came to be this way,
not why it is of benefit to anybody but the rich.
There are 3 movies I like to watch that are about money:
And theres a book I often recommend that explains how and why things got so out of
whack leading to the collapse of 2008: The Looting of America.
Watch and read, my friends. Watch, read and understand.
There's no real incentive for Wall Street to not break the law if the penalty is a tiny fraction of the profit to
be made. And if someone occasionally goes to prison, so what? A little danger makes the game more exiting!
Plus, seeing some fall guy in a fine suit being led away in cuffs on the evening news does wonders for
the public perception that the regulators are on the job. 'No need to look into it. Saw it on 60 Minutes.
They're cracking down on that now. No further attention required.'
The entire financial 'industry' seems to operate with an attitude that all the money is theirs and it's their
duty to squeeze as much out of the rest of us as possible. If there isn't a regular trickle of people losing
their houses and factories going out of business it's a sign that they can dial up the pressure. When there
is a crash, maybe they have a clearer idea of where the limit is, now that they've seen the other side of it.
What is obviously needed is some serious pain for irresponsible behaivor. Something so scary to them that
any 'opportunity' they see for mischief is immediatly rejected.
Any failure caused by financial institutions will result in cancelation of all debts owed to them,
up to and including a total meltdown like we saw in 08.
For example, if you have a mortgage on your house and the bank crashes, the house is yours, free and clear!
If Wall Street puts the world's economy into a tail spin again, whatever payments you were making to a
financial institution are OVER! The house, car, student loan, commercial property, etc.. Everything!
Furthermore, to discourage all sorts of sneaky deals and negligence, if a real company goes out of
business due to excessive debt pressure thru no fault of the management, the former employees who can't
pay their debts are off the hook!
The most likely effect of this is that we will never see another stock market meltdown. The boom and bust
cycles that somehow always screw the little guy and leave the big guys wealthier than ever will stop.
The Gordon Gekko wannabees that currently infest the world will be on the endangered species list.
If there are failures, they will almost always be the result of outright easily provable criminal fraud rather
than gray area negligence or something that can be claimed as an innocent result of market forces. And even
if it's due to market forces beyond the control of the institution in question or the entire industry, same result
for us so same penalty for them! People pulling down king's ransom salaries to run these productless money
moving businesses should have the keen awareness and great forsight that the job requires.
If this sounds unreasonably harsh, it's only because we have been living in a financial environment created by
the money shufflers for our entire lives. The normal deal is an outrageous raw deal. The fact that it's been
institutionalized for centuries does not make it any less outrageous.
If you think it can't work - that the entire system will fall apart - you are mistaken. You aren't seeing the
big picture. You are ignoring the massive wealth inequality the current arrangement has produced.
Financial regulation in the US is handled by a confusing tangle of federal, state
and local agencies. This can only make it easier for crooks to operate and honest financial businesses to
make mistakes. Scrap the whole mess and replace it with single agency chartered with the job of serving the
interests of the public rather than the businesses they are supervising.
As President, I will not be appointing Wall Street insiders to run The Federal Reserve or the consolidated
regulatory agency. Previous Presidents apparently had the notion that it takes an insider to understand the
business, but we can see where that got us - institutionalized cleptomania and continuous boom & bust cycles.
That is over with my administration! No more banks and billionaires writing their own rules.
Who is JO 753?
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