Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Meltdown

Who says the China Syndrome was pure fantasy? In the event of a total meltdown, molten nuclear products from a reactor in the US would eat its way through the earth’s bedrock all the way to China.

Stock markets in Asia predictably mirrored the heavy losses sustained by the Dow. The contagion spread all over the world.

It was bound to happen. Who was going to pay for all those $100 million yearly bonuses of those executives from Lehman, Bear, Morgan, Goldman? This phenomenon has gone on for too long, a cruel caricature of capitalism gone mad. While a laborer in India or China would work under the sun for 12 hours or more and get paid $2, these hotshot moneymen would be managing all these financial transactions online, producing nothing of value and be paid very hefty commissions.

To those who were in the game, it was easy to make a lot of money. These people made it so easy for others to acquire loans with no down payments, 50 years to pay without disclosing that the money was ultimately coming from China or Saudi Arabia and other nations we had become dependent upon for “cheap” commodities and services. And that’s why a carpenter in Vermont could make $45 an hour while his counterpart in Vietnam would earn $4 a day. Because Grandpa and Grandma Vermont accumulated enough capital for their descendants to live far more prosperous lives than they ever dreamed of living.

Stewardship is all about acknowledging responsibility. When you begin feeling entitled to a different standard: working less, paying fewer taxes, going on more vacations, achieving less training and education and expect to be paid the same or even more, you are in for a meltdown surprise.

Those brokerage firms turned out to be wildly successful. They succeeded in making a lot of us broke.

2 comments:

Pedestrian Observer GB said...

In a market that is unregulated and motivated by sheer greed the argument of "less government" as espoused by the Republicans truly hurts as deep in our pockets...... and yet they still don't get it.

pian said...

Happy Birthday Dr. Martin! May you have more birthdays to come and your tribe increase!