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« Partisanship, Dirty Politics, and the Truth | Main | Michael Winship: A Mighty Hoax from ACORN Grows »

Market Fundamentalism and the Madness of Crowds

(Photo by Robin Holland)

This week on the JOURNAL, Bill Moyers spoke with prominent investor and political activist George Soros about the economic crisis and its underlying causes.

Soros attributed much of the current downturn to an erroneous faith in the market to govern itself:

"There has been some kind of an ideological excess: namely, market fundamentalism for the last 25 or so years… It's that markets will correct themselves, that you should leave it to the markets, and there is no need for government intervention in financial affairs. Letting markets run rampant, and that doesn't work…

Sometimes we get carried away. You know, in the Middle Ages people were religious. And so they had tremendous discussions about how many angels can dance on the eye of a needle. Now, if you believe that angels can dance then that's a legitimate question. And this is exactly what has happened here. You thought that you could slice and dice and engage in this kind of financial engineering. And it became very, very sophisticated and got carried away."

In his famed MEMOIRS OF EXTRAORDINARY POPULAR DELUSIONS AND THE MADNESS OF CROWDS, 19th century historian Charles Mackay chronicled numerous economic disasters caused by irrational human behavior, including the tulip mania in 17th century Holland. Mackay wrote:

"In reading the history of nations, we find that, like individuals, they have their whims and their peculiarities; their seasons of excitement and recklessness, when they care not what they do. We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object, and go mad in its pursuit; that millions of people become simultaneously impressed with one delusion, and run after it, till their attention is caught by some new folly more captivating than the first. … Money, again, has often been a cause of the delusion of multitudes. Sober nations have all at once become desperate gamblers, and risked almost their existence upon the turn of a piece of paper… Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one."

What do you think?

  • Is George Soros right that the present crisis was caused by an irrational faith in markets? Why or why not?
  • Have you seen evidence of a parallel irrational faith in government regulation, both in the economy and elsewhere? Explain.
  • Is there something inherent in the human condition that causes economic boom and bust cycles? Why or why not?


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    Comments

    Facism goes way back, though it's true modern media has enhanced it. Check out the "legalist" school in ancient China.

    Ok, Sandy...how bout this from Howard Zinn?
    http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2008/10/22-12

    I listen to certain pundits and economists talk about a self-correcting marketplace as though it is a sacred formula. They say, “it will only be OK if we let the market economy work it out. There are winners and there are losers. Government is bad and government intervention and controls only makes our situation worse.”

    As a young man I had friends and family members who were becoming alcoholics. The wisdom of the time was that alcoholics had to hit “rock bottom” before they could start the climb back up. I sat in on family meetings where, in their time of frustration and desperation, they turned for support to this conventional wisdom. I watched as a father, brother, daughter or mother destroyed their family with alcoholism. I saw family members and friends abandon families which had tumbled off the cliff toward “rock bottom.” I remember the shame and guilt inside those families. All this for an idea which seemed very wrong to me. Today, we look toward intervention for help. Interventions come in a variety of strengths and philosophies and some are better than others. The important thing is that we try to avoid the collapse of the family.

    Gamblers too can destroy a family with their affliction. I have witnessed that also.

    As I see it, the problem with the notion of a “self correcting economy” is that real folks, their families, and the environment they live in, get terribly injured by these ideas. Although the news media mostly followed the story of ENRON’s top executives, it was the workers and their loved ones who were battered by corporate greed. Folks lost their jobs and their pensions. Some lost much more. ENRON’s indifference and abuse toward their customers was damaging, not only financially, but also in the growing national cynicism toward corporations.

    Like a family, our government is a social contract. If government control is bad, then so too are family values. Like a family, government can go down the wrong path. Our nation is not made up of governments or corporations, but human ideas which draw us together toward common goals. When addicts of greed and power, or gamblers take over either governments or corporations, then the nation family will suffer.

    A healthy market economy is created within the good faith of all of its players. Nobody wants to feel like a chump or be cheated. If the folks at the top have lost their social ethics and failed the people, harmed the very security of our nation, then they have earned intervention and regulations. The invisible hand is a human fiction pointing toward “rock bottom.” It is a mantra which supports an addiction of avarice and control. All of our financial systems are just human systems, subject to human strengths and frailties.

    Once again thank you for your insightful programming on PBS.

    PBS,
    Your interview w/ Mark Crispin Miller, was another classic example of why we stopped giving to PBS. It was an undeniable unpaid advertisement for Obama and the Democrats. And another example of why government funded broadcasting should not be part of a “free society” since PBS should not endorse and promote a candidate with taxpayer funds, funds from every taxpayer not just the Democrats. It is shameful to hide behind public funded airwaves while promoting your funding stream from the Democrat party via this type of propaganda. How ludicrous an idea to discuss voter fraud without mentioning the media bias from ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN and PBS. No mention of how PBS pumps up the Democrat candidate to defeat opposition voter turnout. And no mention of “Rather Biased” and his final down fall from the same propaganda techniques. Nor the incestuous relationship the media has with the Democrat party, e.g. Stephanopoulos as an objective political correspondent is a joke. An X-Clinton advisor puts on a “public journalist” badge and you guys soak him up. The alternative media is growing due to this blatant disrespect for the intelligence of your customers, customers who are forced, via taxation, to fund your show. This election is inspiring more of us to look for objective journalist more than ever. And like any election cycle, when new seeds are sewn, this is the beginning of a required change to bring back much needed “objective” journalism to our public airwaves

    PBS,
    Your interview w/ Mark Crispin Miller, was another classic example of why we stopped giving to PBS. It was an undeniable unpaid advertisement for Obama and the Democrats. And another example of why government funded broadcasting should not be part of a “free society” since PBS should not endorse and promote a candidate with taxpayer funds, funds from every taxpayer not just the Democrats. It is shameful to hide behind public funded airwaves while promoting your funding stream from the Democrat party via this type of propaganda. How ludicrous an idea to discuss voter fraud without mentioning the media bias from ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN and PBS. No mention of how PBS pumps up the Democrat candidate to defeat opposition voter turnout. And no mention of “Rather Biased” and his final down fall from the same propaganda techniques. Nor the incestuous relationship the media has with the Democrat party, e.g. Stephanopoulos as an objective political correspondent is a joke. An X-Clinton advisor puts on a “public journalist” badge and you guys soak him up. The alternative media is growing due to this blatant disrespect for the intelligence of your customers, customers who are forced, via taxation, to fund your show. This election is inspiring more of us to look for objective journalist more than ever. And like any election cycle, when new seeds are sewn, this is the beginning of a required change to bring back much needed “objective” journalism to our public airwaves.

    Mr. Crispin Miller said during his segment on today's Friday October 17, 2008 broadcast that voters have been reporting that when they used the electronic voting machines to vote their intended votes for CANDIDATE OBAMA were recorded as votes for CANDIDATE MC CAIN. Really? Please relax. The election during which these machines will be used will not take place until Nov. 4. 2008.

    Michael J Ahles wrote:

    The solution then is to fully nationalize the banks, while allowing the markets to find there own valu and waye. Markets self correct on there own. With globalization upon us, if the solution is correct, the world will surely follow our lead.

    I'm completely against globalization, from what I’ve seen and what I foresee, it doesn't have the USA in its best interest. What if this economic disaster turns into a full blown depression, which I strongly believe it will? If a depression does fall upon us, wages along with the cost of living will drop considerably, but our debts will remain the same. So, when this new global banking system does take over and enforces its new procedures, Americans will be so far in debt they’ll never be able to recover. The global loan sharks could keep us in a perpetual debt.

    I’ve foreseen a depression coming for 4 or 5 years now. Besides stuff like the trade deficit and the outsourcing of jobs which has been ongoing for decades, the drastic increase in gas prices was the first sign, and then a year or 2 later came the subprime and no doc loans. Back in late 2005, I tried to warned people to sell their homes like I had done, but for good reasons, not one person took me seriously (I guess my math skills allow me to see the sky falling, but who listens to a chicken). If a depression does fall upon us, I guess we’ll have to wait and see what bank(s) will arise, but I’m sure it won’t be American.

    Involuntary Orwellian twitch: Globalization/NWO has spent decades and probably trillions of dollars to get America out of its way, and its going to do everything in its power to keep us from getting back up. And if we can’t stop fighting amongst ourselves, it’ll succeed.

    An Economic Solution

    Whilst reading “The Adams Jefferson Letters” today, Adams hit on the inherent flaws of our current banking and market debacle. And like removing a log from a jammed river, for me the solutions to our economic problems came to me with a clear flood of speed.

    Adam’s wrote: “Where tends the Mania for Banks? At my table in Philadelphia, I once proposed to you to unite in endeavors to obtain an Amendment of the Constitution, prohibiting to the separate States the Power of creating banks; but giving Congress the Authority of establishing one Bank, with a branch in each state; the whole limited to Ten Millions of Dollars. Whether this Project was wise or unwise, I know not, for I have deliberated little on it then and never thought it worth thinking much of since.”

    “The system of Banks begotten hatched and brooded by Duer, Robert and Governor Morris, Hamilton and Washington, I have always considered as a system of national Injustice. A sacrifice of public and private interest to a few Aristocratical Friends and Favourites. My scheme could have no such Effect.”

    Verres plundered temples and robbed a few rich men; but he never made such ravages among private property in general, nor swindled so much out of the pockets of the poor and middle class of people as these banks have done. No people but this would have borne the imposition so long. The people of Ireland would not bear Woods half pence. What inequalities of talent, have been introduced into this country by these Aristocratical banks!” And Aristocratical Administration I might add!

    The solution then is to not bail out the banks but in the short term Nationalize them. In the long term Worldize them uniting all the free market societies in the world with one currency and one bank, with outlets around the free world.

    Regarding the bail out of the markets or businesses, this action has and will continue to only take away the freedom of the free markets, and destroy the system of capitalism.
    Markets are meant to prosper only through the freedom of competition, much like evolution, the strong go on and the weak fade away. By nationalizing or bailing out some faltering businesses with government money, no new markets or businesses would be able to compete. A new business could never enter the market competing with one financed by the government and it resources. This incorrect action of government intervention will thus end the evolutionary cycle that strengthens the markets as it progresses, in an equitable and free way.

    The solution then is to fully nationalize the banks, while allowing the markets to find there own valu and waye. Markets self correct on there own. With globalization upon us, if the solution is correct, the world will surely follow our lead.

    Imagine one currency and one bank. Unity and equality, Oneness is on The Way!

    =
    MJA

    Injustice for All 10/17/08
    I am aware that there are those who read what I say and both agree and disagree. I hope that puts me on the middle road. I want to be on the middle road because I am too old for any future change good or bad to affect me.

    In my heart I speak for two things I believe in: First the American Citizen and Second the American Family. I want both to prosper in all good ways. I believe you know what that means.

    Motive, yes I do have a motive. I will show you my motive by telling you my opinion of what I heard last night on Charlie Rose.

    Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House of Representatives in so many words gave Carte Blanche: (the unrestricted power to act at one's own discretion; unconditional authority) to the people who caused by guile and through shellfish greed the Financial Down Fall of Capitalism and the interference by the Federal government to take our money which we are now expected to borrow from our selves and pay interest to the banks on.

    She has no interest in pursuing the criminal or civil avenues to force the people who made Hundreds of Millions and Billions for some at the top to force them to repay the taxpayer. She allowed they should be free to take their money to the bank.

    This is the same person who saw no reason to impeach # 43 for breaking the law and taking several of our Bill of Rights away from US (us).

    I have not in my life time seen a greater injustice against the taxpayer and voter.

    Yes, there are worse things that happen in life but this attitude toward those who brought the Federal Government to it knees and our system is still not fixed… She is an example of why the VOTER is ultimately responsible for the mess we are in.

    When the Voter is “out to lunch” and has no time for civil responsibility the civil servant learns quickly that the absolute power of incumbency is a way to have power over others and gain wealth for them selves… you have to see this is a prescription for corruption and bad behavior to say the least.

    I mean that white collar crime goes so unpunished it is not even considered a risk. I predict that we have not seen the last of the Wall Street Gang, they will be back when the dust settles and we the citizen have been distracted by something new forget what they did and the second heart attack may be a lot worse.

    If the SEC and the Federal Government wants to it can stop the “now free to do as they please gang”. Outlaw computer trading. Use computers to keep records and account of trades but force the professional investor/trader to make trades by personal only… no computer program trading and having the ability to so overwhelm the market that the small investor has no chance of a level playing field.

    The guys who just took Billions to the bank and left US (us) holding the bills, well, what could be more justice for the tax payer then to see the computers and computer programs banded from trading stocks and any other type of investment.

    Computers have given “house odds” to the professional intuitions on Wall Street. . Please tell me what is the remedy for the America people.

    Part Two:
    Part One was listed first by mistake, if this gets entered see below for part one.

    I am bound to say it. If you don’t like the way you are treated and cheated by the Federal Government and Wall Street, you have one tool you can use but you will need all your friends to use it too and at the same time…. Vote the incumbents out and let the new Representatives and Senators know you will fire them if they forget you are their boss.

    Outside of that, you can if you choose… get out of your IRA’s and 401-K’s and any Mutual Funds you are in what ever the cost and put your money in an FDIC Bank or Treasury Securities and sit out the next fall of the Market and the Market will fall.

    While you wait to see what happens to this terrible mess you can study and do your own homework on investments, Stocks or otherwise (there are many investments not of the Market) that you understand and believe in. If you don’t like the Government or Employer control, take control of your money and you decide what is best for you.

    Any woman who knows how to use the word exoteric is as intelligent as me and I learned what I needed to make money in the Market. I also have learned to get out of the way of those who are more powerful and have more money. But as I sit here trying to communicate with you and others… I will return to the Market in the future, but with the whole world in a panic little guys like me need to get out to the way. I hope you can appreciate this.

    I don’t mean this in a harsh or flippant way… at the end of the day if you don’t like what is happening you have to take over and act on your own behalf. You didn’t ask but I closed my Brokerage account when I found out the Hedge Funds were beating me to death and put all my money in an FDIC bank account and it will stay there until I can find good common stocks and invest in them at the right time.

    You ask what common stocks out of curiosity but not as advice:

    Royal Dutch Shell Exxon/Mobil Johnson & Johnson Procter & Gamble
    3M John Deere Cummins Paccar Union Pacific Railroad
    Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad Bank America Wells Fargo

    All these corporations are big blue chip types of businesses that make things we need or provide services we need. All are offered as a suggestion for you to investigate and learn about so you can decide if you want to entrust your money to their stock.

    I apologize for using words that may only make sense to investors if that was what you insinuated. I have never intended to use words to mislead or confuse anyone. If I am to speak of the Stock Market I must use certain words and terms or what I say will not mean anything to anyone.

    The Market assumes nothing as it is a group of people who buy and sell (in this case Common Stocks) for the purpose of making a profit.

    The Free Market reacts to the buying and selling without regard to who does it or what happens to those in the market.

    A Free Market (we don’t have this but need it) well regulated with vigilant SEC overseers or in more common terms: referees & umpires would and has as recently as the 1970’s be as close to a level playing field as I remember.

    As for information on investing I listed 15 books on the Stock Market in another weblog entry, all can be understood by the layman or laywoman. If it were not so I could not have read them. I just today found a new book “Investor Therapy” by Dr. Richard Geist 2003 at the Library.

    Page 220 States:
    Scapegoating. Every correction seems marked by a psychological need to blame someone. Both the suddenness of its onset and the anxiety it engenders leave investors temporarily feeling like the small child who, while running into the kitchen, bumps into a table and it furious at either the table for being there or the parent who put it there:

    “My broker should have told me,” or “The CEO knew this was going to happen,” or “The analyst’s timing was dead wrong,” or “It was only a stock promotion.”

    As Zeus stated in “The Odyssey”
    “How shameless – the way these mortals blame the gods.
    From us alone, they say, come all their miseries, yes,
    But them themselves, with their own reckless ways,
    Compound their pains beyond their proper share.

    Psychological Scapegoating absorbs time and energy that should be directed to understanding the fundamentals of our own stocks and the market’s monetary, valuation, and psychological dynamics. It allows investors to get caught up in frivolous and self-destructive actives, the worst being class-action lawsuits typically benefiting no one but the attorneys.


    Page 256 Further Offers: Ten Rules of the Road.
    1. The capacity to be curious and puzzled.
    2. The patience to investigate a company’s potential.
    3. The ability to imagine what could go wrong with our decisions.
    4. creating a good fit between our investing style and our personality.
    5. The capacity to be an outsider.
    6. The capacity not to know.
    7. The capacity for self-reflective awareness
    8. The ability to decenter
    9. Emotional Discipline
    10. The capacity for optimal restraint.

    Finally there is a Questionnaire on Page 283 to 291 for a check on:
    Your temperament to be an investor.

    Dr. Geist’s book can be found at most book stores or the Library.

    In addition: The following are very good sources of information as long as you remember the “motive”.

    The Wall Street Journal Barron’s Forbes Fortune Business Week Fool.com Yahoo.com

    All are sources for information for the small individual investor that wants to take back their money and make their own decisions.

    I make no argument with you as to: “I believe that this is the end of the road for "market forces" in the eyes and pocketbooks of the millions of people who make this world go 'round with their labor, their dreams, their ethics.”

    You state it better then I could and it is exactly what breaks my heart… those millions of people who work hard to make a good life for their family, who dream of a well and safe community where they can have conversations with friends and neighbors and mostly who are moral and ethical citizens of a Country worth saving.

    “The end is truly near.” I can not say if this is so… I do feel that if population is not brought under control the end will indeed be near. I also feel that more, more, more, is not the way. We need to see the error of a global economy and become smaller units functioning with efficiency but not oppression and quality that is more desired then quantity and work to the point of our humanity being drained out of US (us)… if there is one thing I have learned from being alone all my life it is the value of relationships and there is nothing of greater value. We must find a way to put people and family first and allow for the interaction between friends.

    All this worship of money and the inequity between rich and poor has made us angry and sick. I will close my apology to you by saying… you are exactly right… we do need a level playing field and I hope you find yours.

    Jack: Anonymous9's Freudian slip about a hurricane or a TORONTO reveals he may also resent the possibility of creeping Canadian socialism. Anonymous9, what are your thoughts on government sponsored single-payer health insurance? Well, la-de-da, lordy-lordy-lordy, I wonder... Are we ever gonna be able to get a resistance together?

    Posted by: Grady Lee Howard | October 17, 2008 10:12 AM

    To: Grady Lee Howard
    From: Anonymous9

    Sir: It was not a “Freudian Slip” it was a misspelling which my spell check chose and I failed to find in editing my paper.

    I thought to answer your question until I read your last two sentences. I have no interest in doing so.

    I have dyslexia and I don’t really care if you understand what that is.

    I defiantly have no interest in a “resistance” nor do I assume to know what you meant by the use of that word.

    I served my country and make no apology for doing so. I believe in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution and the Bill of Rights and I have read them. I do not seek a Capitalist or a Democratic Government but a Government of The People with out labels, without division and competition but with Cooperation, term limits, and protection of the Family.

    If it offends you that I want a country where families can prosper then I suggest you join the military and go off to war. If you make it back, let me know if you learned to love life more then profit and if you think a Government of The People is worth while.

    If you have served your Country, you learned a different lesson then I did and I would be interested in hearing what you learned.

    Jack: Anonymous9's Freudian slip about a hurricane or a TORONTO reveals he may also resent the possibility of creeping Canadian socialism. Anonymous9, what are your thoughts on government sponsored single-payer health insurance? Well, la-de-da, lordy-lordy-lordy, I wonder... Are we ever gonna be able to get a resistance together?

    Anonymous9: Bravo on your analysis of Brit Hume's and other capitalist ideologues' rhetoric. Fascism is a modern invention, a figment of developed media. I was listening to a "Christian" talk radio station on the way home yesterday, the one carrying Dave Ramsey, the financial adviser. It was stated by another host that,"If you don't work, you shouldn't eat." I began to draw implications from this threatening statement. To sum it up, fascism denies the complex reality of modern employment where transportation, a phone, an address, documentation , a wardrobe and even medical services are required before one can viably apply.... and a lag in payment of wages of at least two weeks. Since these Biblical fascists, who can cite book, chapter and verse to oppose a minimum wage, unemployment insurance, disability compensation and customary benefits present the Bible (written mostly in the days of pastoralism, and updated in a time of feudalism) as a law above federal or state statutes, why do they fail to find the admonitions to charity, hope and common sense also interspersed in these same texts? Their macabre emphasis on necessary suffering as both natural and God's plan well illustrates their sadistic fascist intent. These are people who cultivate a chain of diminishment and cruelty using religion and falling back upon the hierarchies and barbarism of times past. They are funded and promoted by wealthy and sadistic interests to create fear by describing and advocating a "Hell on Earth" for anyone who speaks against or opposes their exploitation of anyone or any group weaker than they. Somehow such is supposed to be "good for business." The misused mythology of Christianity is only one branch of this same elitist fascism. The chairman of the FCC telling people how they must spend money to continue watching TV after Feb. 2009, the political parties excluding voters and third party candidates, the police who brutalize lawful protesters and the surveillance (real and threatened) of our personal communications are all blatant aspects of the same fear generating mechanism. We have been in the grasp of this monster for a long time, and now that partially visible hand drags us under its iron heel, as they impose what they jokingly call a Depression. It is depressing, but it is also the generalized shock of mass torture, as Naomi Klein and others have warned us.
    Ellison Hunt doesn't seem very afraid, and neither should you be. Fear can do you no good when solidarity and resistance (mental and physical) are the way out of this nightmare. Stay close together in mind and spirit to thwart the hateful fascists. If you believe read the hell out of the loving parts of your Bible, and if you don't believe, rail against the agents of fear and hate, such as Brit Hume.

    To whom it may concern,
    The term Conservative Republican is an Oxymoron. Everything the Republicans have done in the last eight years has been anything but conservative. They have spent money like it was going out of style and they have undermined the stability of our society.
    They have given away billions of dollars to their rich supporters. We need to eliminate lobbyists and no bid contracts.
    The definition of conservative is tending to oppose change, favoring traditional views and values. The Republicans have promoted greed,
    lies, torture, human sacrifice, immoral behavior, hate, and preemptive war; including the decline of democracy and freedom of press. all of these things are in direct conflict with this countries traditional views and values. They have even undermined The constitution.
    Anything you can do to correct this false assertion is much appreciated.

    Dear Mr. Moyers,

    You should invite Ellen H. Brown to be on your show to discuss her insightful book, The Web of Debt.

    In her book, she lays out the causes of our current economic crisis, explaining why this crash was inevitable, pointing out why any amount of tinkering with the banking system will not solve the crisis, showing a clear way out of the mess, a method used by Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War.

    I need to speak of Britt Hume who is the perfect Capitalist by his own statement:

    “If taxes are going to be so high that there is no reason to keep working a person might as well go home and be with their family.”

    Good Lord in Heaven, I never heard the Capitalist way of life described any better… lets everyone go to work and work all our life away and never see our children grow up or the smile on our wife’s face or know that our mother is in the hospital and on and on.

    Let’s all just worship money and work ourselves to death for a small line in the Bank that says account so and so has $250,000.00 dollars in it and have that as an epitaph on our tome stone.

    What a dry miserable life Capitalism offers and especially since it just imploded and fell on it ass and left millions wondering who to see about it. There is no one but ourselves to see. More and more and more will not work and will only destroy us along with our earth.

    You can not rely on Democracy either. The majority elects our government and they turn us our without excuse. The minority is not protected so what good is Democracy.

    Again I find myself saying that we have a very good foundation for a government if we just take it back from the Capitalist and the Democrat. Neither serves us.

    Our Federal, State, and Local Governments have but one job. That is to protect and serve the welfare of the people. We have too many labels and too much military covering up the fact that we the people should come first. Those who work and raise families have a right to this protection of “our” government.

    If it is a Hurricane or a Toronto or as flood, the Government should be there immediately helping us to recover. Any Citizen of the USA has a right to this protection.

    If we loose our job, we have a right to unemployment and if desirous retraining for a different career. If we are sick we have a right to receive competent medical care. If we desire education it should be given to us.

    That is the kind of government we should move toward and give notice to the Congress and President that they serve us. The Corporations also should be given notice that they too will be expected to serve us. We have the power to demand laws and regulations be passed that protect our health and safety.

    None of what I have said is a free ride or a hand out… how in the hell can a government who taxes the US Citizens of America give a hand out to the very people who paid the tax? It is our money and they just proved themselves both Federal Government and Corporations not afraid to steel our money and give it to the rich.

    Am I so radical or do I have a right to stand up for the people and if Congress can vote itself free healthcare and full pay at retirement are you saying I should not ask for the same for my friends, neighbors, and family?

    It has all got turned upside down. Britt Hume is wrong in so many ways. We should have protection and opportunity from our Federal Government… we are the ones who pay the bills, its our money. We should have time and lots of it to raise our families and have conversations with our friends and take trips to learn about our neighbors.

    Damn it all, Folks we should have time for fun, or relaxing in nature. Don’t you see…? We are human beings not cattle, not slaves, we have the capacity to be more then the work we do or the things we own and certainly more then the stuff we have to pay to store in those ugly storage lots.

    I just don’t believe we have to put up with a government that frightens us and leads by fear. I don’t believe we need to be so divided. I try to listen to both democrat and republican and when I manage they both want to be safe and to raise their children and have them educated for a career in life. Both want good doctors available at the time of sickness and accidents and threat of life. Why is it we hate each others difference so much and in the midst of all this bickering our Government just stole Trillions of dollars to pay off incompetent Corporations and did not even give us a “thank you” much less an IOU… you really think that they will give the money back?

    They never put the money thay stole from the Social Security Fund back and now they say they can’t afford to pay us. It was our money… we paid it in and our employers paid it in as a benefit of our labor. There is no reason in the world that Social Security should not be repaid and kept solvent.

    No reason except the one that is screwing up all our lives… our so called leaders have on purpose divided us so we will not notice their actions to control us. They keep us like salves, not physically bound but in debt to the point we can not afford much beyond food, clothing, shelter, and transportation. Have you notice the cost of food, transportation and interest rates on credit cards and short term loans? It is all so sad how we are being treated and how we take it generation after generation and fall for the old line………….

    What was it a politician said, tell me what is wrong and I will tell you who to blame.

    No solutions. Well I have offered more then my share and none have been tried. Good night America….

    I will be away from my soap box for a while… I am not sure of a return.

    Allenwrench wrote:

    I think nature will help us humans out with that hard decision - for nature does not discriminate nor find the truth too controversial or provocative or opinionated to be true. And in the end, nature will settle the dispute of population control with even handed justice by removing excess population just as it does with all its species, ever reminding us all that nature does not bow to man...it is always man that bows to nature.

    This is very true, but humans could prolong their existence by shutting down all nuclear power plants, by creating less fluorocarbon, and by showing each other a little humanity.

    It is time to say the Stock Market is fair and working as it should. Regardless of it being an Unrestricted Free Market or a Regulated Free Market the market allows people to buy and sell stocks.

    Only when interfered with does it appear to be biased.

    Hedge Funds or Federal Government makes no difference… it is human interference that gives the impression that the Stock Market does not work.

    All things in life have to be studied in order to become proficient, to have a good foundation, to be able to make it useful in your life.

    There are many sources of information to learn about and to use the Market to your advantage.

    If you do not want to learn then the Market will not be a place of profit but a psychological nightmare that “If you have any self-destructive tendencies, the market is going to find them and hit you with them” in the form of losses.

    So, the next time you decide to blame the Stock Market, stop and think, who is it on Wall Street or in the Federal Government who has a motive that is not in your best interest.

    Such as the Big International Oil Companies and the Recently “failed and bailed out” Investment Banks in their use of Crude Oil Futures on the Commodes Market. It was they not the Market that found a way to manipulate the Market in their best interest. And it is they not the Market who should be exposed for hurting the people and the economy.

    If you are diligent and fair with the market by keeping Greed and Fear under control and executing your own plan without emotion, you will see more rather then less profits.

    If you buy into “Wall Street” and the lies and motives of the professionals you will loose your money and have no one to blame but yourself. The Market after all is for mature adults who are willing to work hard and study and take a risk. It is not for the immature or gamblers who are always the first to complain the Market took their money when in reality they did not tend to their investments and make the needed decisions.

    If you have read this far I need to say that I regret without being able to help any one of those who in fact sold at a loss and did in fact lose money on their investments.

    This is the very reason I try to be fair instead of judging. I realize more then I want to that many millions of people have been mislead by Brokers and Employers and the IRS about their retirement plans.

    The simple truth is that people trusted Brokers to be honest professionals and trusted their Employers to do what was best for the employee and the IRS to not come up with so restricted a plan and controlled by the Employer and with penalties by the IRS to further control and complicate the employees and customers retirement plans.

    I read the find print and said no to 401-K plans. Most people do not, but it states there is no guarantee that the employee will make money nor does it say they will not lose money. I also saw little of the FDIC emblem on any of the paper work and I don’t trust the SIPC Securities Investor Protection Corporation. You can get a 3 page explanation of the SIPC is on the internet.

    I can only hope that the people who actually sold and lost money will be able to make it up over time.

    For the people who are fretting over “paper losses” and have not sold, if they choose to hold and not sell, they will in time be back to the point before this down turn took place… but I would hesitate to say when that will be. A guess that assumed the system is righted and regulated would be 5 to 10 years. If not regulated the Hedge Funds have the where with all to drive the market up to levels not yet seen. That will be a very dangerous time for the small investor and a time to sell all investments and put their money in a Bank and stop once and for all putting Retirement Money at Risk.

    If the Federal Government wanted to protect these people they could guarantee their retirement plan at a certain date and offer a bail out for them getting out of the Market and into a Bank and staying there… but there is much too much jealously in this country now to get that done even if the F.G. wanted to.

    I hope I have shown that I realize there is a great deal of pain for the people and families in our country as I am for them. I hope what I write comes across that I am for the family and the working people.


    Anonymous9 wrote:
    Say it isn’t so… do you really mean you would not like an apology after I spent so many hours trying to explain myself and the Market?

    Anonymous9,
    I only meant that you should not feel badly about any comments you have made, or explanations about the markets you have given to me. I appreciate your extensive explanation, and as a result, I think we are on the same page. As I understand it, the stock market is a important way for companies to get the money they need. The markets play an important role in business, as you say. My piqued response was an expression of anger at the misuse of the public trust, and destruction of so many retirement accounts. It really is grim for quite a few people.

    I did use the word esoteric, and not exoteric.

    We look forward to your part 2.

    Thanks for taking the time.
    Betsy

    Sorry, I will try tomorrow to enter part two.........

    If the weblog doesn't take the document them, I may just give up.

    I have tried three times to enter Part TWO into the weblog and 2 times it repeated Part ONE and three times it refused to print part TWO.

    I am sorry for the failure to get part Two entered and for Part ONE being entered 3 times and takeing up space.

    Bill, are you there? Is there a limit on the length of entries?

    Part One
    As I stated in part two, I am trying to get this document entered in Bill Moyers weblog.

    Folks, please separate the apology to Ms. Whitfill from my comments on the Market and if useful, please enjoy and use them for any benefit they give you.

    Say it isn’t so… do you really mean you would not like an apology after I spent so many hours trying to explain myself and the Market?

    I am sincerely invested in what I say about the Market and the present state of things. If I am right then maybe I help someone… if I am wrong or offensive I need to be shown another way and to learn from my mistakes.

    So, Betsy Whitfill I will post my apology after I edit it from yesterday and hopefully find any mistakes or correct anything I feel different about.

    I don’t mean to go against your will but I don’t want to waist my time and not use my paper to learn from others.

    Ellison,
    No need to apologize to me. We are all sharing views and perspectives. I should apologize to everyone for my many typos.
    This mornings dental work was a bit exhausting!

    To: Betsy Whitfill
    From: Ellison Hunt

    I realized when I said the “simple solution” is to let the Free Market work on the way down and seek its own level, I would be in trouble with a lot of people who are called small investors and this term is in no way derogatory or negative.

    I am glad you disagreed with me. Maybe I can learn something from you so let’s see if I understand your point of view and what you want from the Stock Market.

    I do not patronize you when I say; you should and have every right to speak of “the solution”. I have for 38 years thought that the man and woman on Main Street is every bit as smart as the people on Wall Street. I also am of the opinion that Women are better then men at investing as long as they do their homework and do not depend on men or women on Wall Street who have their on self interest as the motive for giving you advise.

    I am not a broker and when you say our here in “the bush” let me share with you that I spent 20 years in what I call “the desert” unemployed and working temporary jobs on which I managed to survive. But it is not my background that is important; I mention it in
    hopes that you at least might give me some credit for understanding the working people with actual jobs.

    Lets move on to you next point. I have 29 entries to date on Bill Moyers Weblog and I frankly did not know who I was speaking to. I write because I feel compelled to and I offer my best thoughts and feelings on the present subject. Each day brings a new set of problems and if we are fortunate people with new solutions to those problems.

    I want you to know that I personally have loved the Stock Market for 38 years and I have found nothing fairer in life until, deregulation began in earnest in the 1980’s and has continued until present day. Due to deregulation I have watched the Stock Market become more and more dangerous until I myself had to throw in the towel so to speak. When I began the buyer and seller stood on equal ground and the SEC was vigilant in watching for violations and punishing the wrong doers. This is not now the case.

    “The rest of us” You speak of the rest of us and I am only interested in this group. I do not give one whit for the professional in Wall Street. It is the working class of which I was once a part that I care about. So what I say next may be taken as one man’s opinion.

    I use to believe as you do that it was the Stock Market that would keep me even or maybe help me prosper. It did in fact keep me off the street through my finding good investments and giving them time to grow. But I now believe as you do the “Government Financial Wizards” have control over your 401-K’s and IRA’s and to a great extend over your pension plan. I can’t change that. I can tell you that I had to use my IRA’s and I got out of a Caterpillar 401-K gladly paying the penalties after finding out what I had gotten into. (A mess where I had little or no control over where my money would go.) When I had IRA’s I had to withdrawal my funds on several occasions and pay the income tax plus a 10% Tax penalty on top. I had to eat during those 20 years so every investment I made in the stock market that yielded a profit and all the IRA’s I contributed to over the preceding 15 years was used to keep me off the street and I want you to know it was no picnic.

    As angry as I am at the Mercenary Bastards both in the Government and on Wall Street I can not begin to imagine your anger toward me for my attempt to share what I had hoped would be helpful. I suppose humility is the best thought, to keep in mind when you assume to offer others help and unwanted advice. But I do feel Bill has asked anyone with an idea or opinion to state it.

    In any case I stand accused of being something I can not even understand without going to a dictionary.

    “What is simple to the exoteric financial thinkers is rubbish to us.”

    I did manage to look up Esoteric – Meant for or understood by only a specific group.
    And just now realize you said Exoteric so I went to the dictionary and found:
    1. Suitable for or communicated to the general public.
    2. Not belonging, limited, or pertaining to the inner or select circle as of disciples.
    3. Popular, simple, commonplace.

    Now I am confused as to whether you are saying the select group or not belonging to the inner circle…

    Well lady, you have done me in, I am at a loss for words and I dare not guess what is meant by Exoteric.


    I would like to take issue with the word “Rubbish” not that it may be to you but that rubbish is what all small investors who are successful have to learn. All knowledge is specific to its field of learning. The Law, Accounting, Music, all types of knowledge have a unique vocabulary and Wall Street is one. Yes! They use all sorts of words to confuse the public and like politicians can talk for hours without saying or revealing any thing of worth. So you learn it or put your money in a Bank.

    People like you and I who are so angry should remember it is not us common folk who are at fault. You are correct in your assumption I have no right to offer a solution. But neither am I your enemy or the cause of your losses.

    I have to emit I was surprised at how much I offended you without trying.

    I fully agree that you are forced into the present system at no fault of your own and you have a right to be angry at having your money given to a bunch of swindlers and charlatans who need to be in jail.

    You should not be punished for believing your Government is fair and has your interest at heart. But the fact is It does not and Bill Moyers:
    • A World of Ideas : Conversations With Thoughtful Men and Women About American Life Today and the Ideas Shaping Our Future (1989), Doubleday, hardcover: ISBN 0385262787, paperback: ISBN 0385263465
    • A World of Ideas II: Public Opinions from Private Citizens (1990), Doubleday, hardcover: ISBN 0385416644, paperback: ISBN 0385416652, 1994 Random House values edition: ISBN 0517114704
    I do not remember which, book I or book II, has it but there is an explanation that states clearly that the Federal Government does not have your best interest at heart. The Federal Government that you and I deal with today cares only for the Corporations best interest. And as you have just seen will do anything to preserve it and the hell with you the taxpayers. I can’t change this either.

    I just remembered that back then the Corporations were known as the NATIONAL INTEREST and the people were know as the special interest and translated that meant that we the people didn’t even get on the radar screen of Congress… Still Don’t.

    What a great Soros interview. The discussion is great too. Thanks All!

    B

    Dear Friends:
    I read Galbraith when I was 16 years old (the Affluent Society; The new Industrial State). It was essential reading in my school not for the economics but like Churchill's History of the Second World War for good Enlish composition.
    But what Soros expounds today is Galbraith's wisdom. The Americans should read Galbraith instead of listening to Paulson and gang.
    But then Galbraith was considered a pinko.
    What would you call Paulson, the Treasury boss of The United Socialist States of America.
    Cheers!!!
    j.


    No matter what Betsy tells you my middle name is not Maitreya; It is Lee. I must admit though that I've wasted too much energy trying to conceal my benevolent nature and super-sized spiritual development. I remember the olden times when Arnold Swartzenegger had to wear a moo-moo to hide his attributes from groupies like Maria Shriver. I kind of share his problem lately, not in the abs and bi-ceps, but in the heart. I will be making a statement later, Halloween maybe. (Where can I get a good guru costume rental inexpensively in the Newark, N.J. area?)

    John McCain missed a terrific opportunity last night to tout stocks in which to invest Social Security. Oldsters get a 5% raise on their checks this month and I know it is burning a hole in their purses. Hint: Henry, er I mean William, Ford may bring out that new Edsel in 2009. It's a chrome honey, runs like butta... and the gas price is falling.

    The stacked deck and the house of cards.
    As long as the cards are stacked against the poor and middle class; "the house of cards" will collapse with every gust of wind. It is the responsibility of government to regulate the banks and stock market to assure that there is a level playing field. Greed and monopoly are fatal flaws in any social organization. Greed and Monopoly assure that There is no justice or equity to assure a stable and fluid economy.

    3 striks and I am out....

    I tried three times to enter my appology.

    All three are now in cyber space somewhere.

    But, I only tried 2 days and tomorrow will make it 3 who knows..........

    Very soon Maitreya will give an interview on a major US television show. He will not give his name as Maitreya, but will talk about humanity's common need for the basic necessities of life, about the need for sharing and justice to guarantee a future for the world. That interview will mark the beginning of his open, public work.

    Wall Street Bluff & Federal Government Blinked 10/15/08

    Week of October 06-07-08-09-10-2008 SM Fell 1,874 points

    Monday 10/13/08 SM Up 1,040 points or 55% of last weeks decline

    Tuesday 10/14/08
    SM Up 936 points from low point of the day to high point of the day
    874 points from close to high point of the day
    535 points form open to high point of the day
    SM Closed = lost of (77)
    Date Open High Low Close Adj Close*
    14-Oct-08 9,388.97 9,924.28 9,050.06 9,310.99 9,310.99

    In two days the Stock Market recovered all the losses of the preceding week and added 102 points before deciding to take profits and not reveal the clues to the public of what is taking place on Wall Street.

    This is what I think happened: Paulson the Top Man at Goldman Sachs Group resigns his position and takes the top job at the US Treasury. He and Wall Street know the Banks are in trouble and especially the “Investment Banks” of which he ran. They Paulson and Wall Street also know there is only so much time and the house of cards is going to fall.

    The house of cards has now fallen and W.S. and the Banks both FDIC and Investment Banks have gone to the Federal Reserve and the US Treasury (were their friend now resides) with their “hats in there hands” but were unable to get the quick action they wanted.

    What to do? Wall Street decided to drive down the market to the point it would panic Main Street and the Federal Reserve and the US Treasury and they would say I told you so to Congress.

    After Congress and the Executive Branch agrees to pay… the Stock Market recovers in two days + 102 points. It is true that the taking of profits lowered the close of the day on the 14th so the Bluff would not be noticed by Main Street.

    How can one man state such an outlandish scenario? I will give it my best shot. I said the other day that no money is lost in the market. If it were not so

    and money was lost in the market… the money that came back into the market on Monday and Tuesday would not have been there to come in. The professionals who sold at the top keep their money for such occasions nicely called a “buying opportunity”.

    You heard on the News all week that the small investor on Main Street was taking their money out of the Market and putting it in the Bank. So “that” money was not available to rally the market especially to the tune of 1,976 points.

    That kind of move in two days requires Institutional Trading (Hedge Funds, Mutual Funds, Pension Funds, are the short list), the professional money manager who has Billions to Buy Long and SELL SHORT and the Computer programs to do so like an “angle dancing on the point of a needle” meaning they made money on the down side the Week of October the 6th and on the up side Monday and Tuesday and then on the down side today as the Market fell 773 points. Folks when you see trading on this scale, it is not the PANIC of the small investor who as a rule buys long and holds but of the professional who makes money going up and down and the actual point be it 10,000 or 5,000 doesn’t make a lot of difference as they will make money at both points.

    When the small investor got burned big time in the Internet Bubble they all went running to the Mutual Funds as the Hedge Funds are unavailable to the Main Street investor.

    This changed the Stock Market from an Investors Market to a Traders Market and that made massive swings possible and that made the bluff of Wall Street work as the News Media was once again Screaming CRASH and there was no real crash as if there had been it would have continued to fall. The professionals will not buy in or sell out, unless they can make money.

    A note: the Wall Street News Media and the Main Street News Media always give reasons why the market moves up and down. Their jobs require them to fill time writing or talking and the fact is the motive of both Wall Street and Main street is to control the public. They are not your friends and they do not tell you the truth of what happens in this country while you are trying to make a good life for you and your family. Wall Street is in the pocket of the Rich and Main Street is in the pocket of the Federal

    Government. If this was not so you would hear the truth of investigative reporting as we did in the 70’s.

    It was a Manipulation of the Market by the Very Powerful People who run things by talking to each other and planning actions that will force the Federal Government to make the taxpayer to bail out the super rich and the only result I see is this:

    We now have Banks loaning taxpayer money to taxpayers who will be required to pay interest on their own money and the Banks and Wall Street can make profits as usual. And today in the WSJ it was stated that the Banks were forced to take the money against their will…. Do you really believe they did not want the 25 Billion that our mean old government gave them?

    When will the division between the citizens be closed? I simply do not feel like listing all the names it is enough to say until we as a people come together as citizens of America and work for the common good of the people and their families… our Government will take every opportunity to do what is good for business (that is a code word for the wealthy). We can not afford the wealthy as they have enslaved us and tied our hands through credit and a form of Governing that ignores the majority.

    Our problems will not be solved by those now in charge because they have caused our problems.

    Will we who are without power ever be granted the rights and opportunities under the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights?

    These documents are the Foundation of our Law and they stand against those who would enslave us. But with out enforcement of the law, the regulations, the will of the people, we have nothing but oppression through debt. Overwhelming everlasting debt. Our reward is materialism and consumerism and the empty feeling in our hearts that is the end result.

    A few notes on the figures I found on Yahoo.com and in the WSJ.

    The Hedge Funds had a hey day at the same time two of them were denying they were in the market in the WSJ 10/14/08

    All Three Major Averages:

    DJIA up 11%
    S&PIA up 11%
    NASDAQ up 11%

    Point difference 834
    Percent difference 55%

    Low Point of the Market = 7,773.71

    1976 points SM up Monday and Tuesday
    1874 points SM down Week of 10/06
    0102 points Difference

    I will close by saying I do regret repeating myself so often on the Documents of Law and the needs of the People.

    Breaking News...

    Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke announced today that it will take time for things to work through the system, and that although, he is concerned, he is confident that markets will soon stablize. “Right now,” Bernanke told reporters, “it appears that pigs fly and ice cream has bones.”

    Markets reacted quickly to Bernanke’s comments. In New York, shares of ice cream companies plumetted in brisk trading. While insisting that American ice cream was entirely boneless, several companies announced immediate recalls of most ice cream products. Meanwhile, in Chicago, pork belly futures spiked higher in anticipation of lower fuel costs due to the falling price of oil. Traders suggested that many hedge funds were bailing out of ice cream and moving heavily into pork in expectation that, later in the day, Treasury Secretary Paulson would announce a further bail-out package designed to buy up surplus pork barrels.

    For the Soros loving Golden "dreamer". You wake up, some dreams are simply NIGHMARES.

    So the market is to blame, that's like blaming the shopping mall for credit card abuse.

    Who thinks there are ANY shoes worth OVER $50???? And if you find someone willing to CHARGE a $300 pair of shoe on a 24.5% credit card, is it the shopping mall or the plastic card that is to blame???

    Anyone who thinks it's the mall or the card should vote for OBAMA.

    I could not factor in racism, but I'm sure someone can, they should vote OBAMA too.

    TO Linda and others on RACISM.........

    You have a right to work and if you have children, you have a responsibility to work -- you have a right to have a family, you have a responsiblity to provide for them.

    We have a lot of rights, and with EVERY ONE COMES RESPONSIBILITY.

    EQUALITY, definately means some differnt to me than it does to Linda. I do not expect gov't or Democrats to make me white, or green or RICH.

    Linda is a typical Democrat, to me. I could care less about EQUALITY for myself or LINDA - who sounds able bodied and sound minded albiet "bi-racial", as if that's an affliction.

    I choose to care about those that have no voice and truely need EQUALITY but cannot, sometimes EVER achieve it -- the blind, mentally disabled, physically disabled, in need of a heart transplant, and simply CHILDREN in general.

    I refuse to agree to assist those that will take a place in line before those listed above. I do not think Linda would either but

    "Bi-racial", I am FULL RACIAL and sigmatized by my own family for going to college, working and achieving in spite of my BROWN SKIN.

    I have lived my life seeing my own family's racism and descrimination.... and where it's gotten them - I would have been respected by my family if I have become pregnant in high school and dropped out!!!!!!! That is a fact, as everyone of my 7 other female cousins did just that, and they are considered "normal" by my family's standards.

    It boils down to .... you cannot learn from someone else's mistake if you do not consider it a mistake.

    I just went to yet another baby shower for an illegitamate child, my cousin's son (never knew his father) knocked up his 18 year girlfriend, her mother is 34 (do the math). All the mom-to-be's girlfriends have babies in carriers from one month to 5 months---THERE WERE 9 babies. None of these moms were married to the fathers (guess why not??) AND all were complaining about the cost of DIAPERS!!!!!

    Word: if you cannot afford a condom, you cannot afford diapers and if you cannot afford diapers YOU CANNOT AFFORD A BABY.

    I am BROWN, dark brown and when I look in the mirror I see a self respecting person that takes responsibility for my decisions in life.

    My business is very slow this past couple weeks and I do not forsee it to ramp up until things stablize - sometime early next year I predict. So what does a FULL minority do, I go get a LIFE SCAN (complete electronic background check) so that I can volunteer with children in high risk situations.

    I have never "canned" myself as a Minority. I strive to achieve not cry when things do not go my way for any reason.....

    Was I not hired because I'm taller than the man-boss or because I'm brown??

    Did I not get a second date because I'm more sucessful than my date or because I'm brown and he's whatever??

    Did I get picked for cheerleading because I deserved it or because I'm attractive (a form of DESCRIMINATION - because someone more worthy was discounted due to not being as attactive)????

    It does not matter to me why I am picked or passed over -- I call it descretion-ation a combo of descretion and descrimination -- heck even my dog discriminates.

    What levels the playing field is when EVERY person does the best they can and decides to become a TEAM player.

    Democrats want to take from the team and give to those that refuse to participate.

    There are alot of reasons I consider myself a Republican, and as a full racial person (like that's some qualifier, Linda) I refuse to legitimize the race crap!

    I do not agree with helping someone just because they are BROWN, BLACK, YELLOW - scratch the YELLOW - in my descretion-ation they work hard, put family first, instill motivation and respect BY EXAMPLE, so what's up with them????

    You cannot GIVE someone help- you need to show them how to HELP THEMSELVES, besides I consider it degrading and disrespectbul to "GIVE" to an able bodied person.

    Democrats promise all sorts of "aid" for the fully capible people that perpetuate their condition generation to generation.

    Democrats DO NOT want EQUALITY, if they did they would have already acheived it.

    Lastly, Democrats have alot of never crying RACE, where are the die-hard HILLARY supporters - they are DEAD to Hillary and for OBAMA - and I quote because the wanted to be "on the right side of history". Now what does THAT MEAN (rhetorical).


    There is one condition we can all agree upon: "Things could be better."

    What are some things we can begin to do today to improve the overall quality of life and our prospects?

    Ellison,
    No need to apologize to me. We are all sharing views and perspectives. I should apologize to everyone for my many typos.
    This mornings dental work was a bit exhausting!

    Let's see if I can get the second half of that 11:15 post square....

    What happens to workers when they work in places exemplified by
    this insanity?

    Anyway, IMO the elixir in the madness of crowds is nothing but judgement.

    A couple years ago I came across an interesting link pertaining to the madness of Western crowds. [at least Kierkegaard saw behavior in Denmark analogous to some in the Bible] Grady, it goes along with the "sadism" you mentioned today in the work place. Talk about dysfunctional. People are going to have to learn everything all over again. Everyone's been imitating John Galt. Trump. Social Darwinists. And on and on. But if anyone out there tried to get to the kernel of Kierkegaard...

    "The Crowd is Untruth: a Comparison of Kierkegaard and Girard" by Charles K. Bellinger
    http://www.religion-online.org/showarticle.asp?title=1775

    Those at the top whom today others imitate, it appears, have basically restricted wealth to a degree that has enabled extraordinary obediance to the classic (in terms of Rene Girard's ideas) command from on high.

    "In imitating our models, we may come to approach their
    power and threaten their own position--in which case they
    quickly become rivals who tell us not to imitate them."
    Marko A.

    I don't mind saying...the madness of crowds is get'n to me. Socrates complained about it, and in that particular case he wasn't talking about the divine madness. I can't catch up on Maitreya. I'm too far behind in Sogyal's material. Later I hope. Re our situation, though, why should I pretend like everything's gonna be hunky dory? Maybe some of you saw that Chris Hedges link I put up. I'm not gonna pretend.

    But...once again I will suggest an anthropological outlook other than Joseph Campbell's. Right here when I do this is usually where those sheltered lives come into play Jack Martin was talking about. When you examine the words of only those in-vogue you miss a lot, and it's probably true that a goodly number of the "correspondents" Jack alluded to (not here I wager, but everywhere else) are mainly exposed to ideas accepted as in-vogue by the meritocracy. He complained about their lack of mechanical, real world know-how, but I'll go beyond that.

    I can't even believe Sandy's for real. Look at this land. Post Katrina, Mexicans did construction in New Orleans and slept 40 to a semi's parked in guarded compounds. Meat processing is insane. How do I know? From having read at OrionSociety dot org. How do I know? From having worked in "chicken place." Trust me, it's not like selling chicken. It's more like some of Arnold Blanch's art...the developmentally disabled with all kinds of cuts standing up waiting in line for Tylenol during their lunch break. What happens to workers' souls when they work in ">places like this? [there was also some apropos art in "Southern Exposure" in their chicken place series IIRC]

    Anyway, IMO the elixir in the madness of crowds is nothing but judgement.

    A couple years ago I came across an interesting link pertaining to the madness of Western crowds. [at least Kierkegaard saw behavior in Denmark as analogous to some in the Bible] Grady, it goes along with the "sadism" you mentioned today in the work place. Talk about dysfunctional. People are going to have to learn everything all over again. Everyone's been imitating John Galt. Trump. Social Darwinists. And on and on. But if anyone out there tried to get to the kernel of Kierkegaard...

    "The Crowd is Untruth: a Comparison of Kierkegaard and Girard" by Charles K. Bellinger
    http://www.religion-online.org/showarticle.asp?title=1775

    I see Linda agrees with me about Klein...or I agree with her. Can't find the guy again who said there came to be way too many brokers. That was a good one.

    I see Linda agrees with me about Klein...or I agree with her. Can't find the guy again who said there came to be way too many brokers. That was a good one.

    I see Linda agrees with me about Klein...or I agree with her. Can't find the guy again who said there came to be way too many brokers. That was a good one.

    Posted by: Betsy Whitfill | October 13, 2008 6:30 PM

    I wanted you to know I tried to post an apology to you today but the web site is not accepting it at present. I will try tomorrow.

    Anonymous9

    Posted by: Grady Lee Howard | October 14, 2008 3:00 PM

    Thank you for your supportive comments. I would like to talk to Bill but it hasn’t happened for 40 years and probably won’t. He has been gracious enough here to give me a chance to share my thoughts on important subjects.


    GLH asked: "Is Maitreya a spirit guide or a flesh and blood human?"

    Grady Lee, I understand your view. I believe it to be true, but each person has to decide for her/himself.

    Maitreaya is a teacher whose stature is that of the Buddha, yet comes as an Elder Brother, a simple man albeit one with extraordinary wisdom, talent, knowledge etc. Not so much flesh and blood, but in a body human enough to teach in the everyday world of men and women.

    Thanks for your good wishes.

    Anonymous9: It takes an afficianado of the market to uncover the coreography of manipulation. The 11% thing is just like demolishing #7 on 9/11, over the top. Man, they must be pumping out value in the trillions.

    Thank you again Anonymous9 for schooling us Moyeristas. Maybe Bill should interview you.

    Sandy, you've had a hard life girl, and you're so ful of intelligent, indignant energy. Do you kickbox? I'm actually 52 and married to Gladdie Victrola or I'd look you up. Thanks for bashing Dems. It's hard to have a good discussion when everyone agrees. Your experiences sound atypical though. It could be due to discrimination against you. Keep going, Girl! Denny Crane (John McCain) needs a few votes to keep it real.

    The end of Round One 10/14/08

    Something happened in the Stock Market last week and this Monday which needs to be looked at by Students of the Market. I don’t mean the professionals that did the manipulation.

    On 10/06/08 the S.M. opened and began to fall and 5 days later it had fallen 1,874 points according to Wikipedia (any mistakes in numbers are mine).

    On 10/13/08 the S.M. opened and began to go up 1,040 points or 55% of what was lost in the preceding week.

    The fact that triggered my suspicion was that all three major averages gained the same amount:

    NYSE gained 11%
    S&P 500 gained 11%
    NASDAQ gained 11%

    Random numbers do not finish the day at the same amount of percent of increase. My point is that the S.M. is no longer random but controlled by the Hedge Funds who have enough Billions of Dollars to drive the Market in any direction on any given day.

    This is what the public witnessed last week and this Monday. The motive for the Hedge Funds to drive the Market down was to scare the Government into action they wanted. This has been the purpose from the beginning when the Banks first went to the Treasury with their hand out for a bail out and then Wall Street wanted in on the action.

    The fall brought about action from all the major banks in the world and that satisfied Wall Street for the moment and the Hedge Funds drove the Market back up over half (55%) of the lost in one day.

    Personally I really don’t want to see Round Two. Round Two will be a down turn of worse proportions when the good money thrown after bad investments fails. The same people that caused the bubble in the first round with no restrictions or regulations on them failed and ran to the Government for a bail out… these same people Banks, Wall Street, Corporations will be back for a second helping.

    Think about it, why should they not, it was so easy. The first “heart attack” has been fixed but the patient is not cured. And surely the Government will want to cure our Hero.

    The second point I would attempt to make with this paper is to restate there is no money lost in the Market as the News Media tries to convince people of and scare them.

    Yes, an individual investor can lose their money by buying high and selling low. But, the person who bought low and sold high took the money lost by the first investor and went to the bank.

    The proof is in the last 6 days of the stock market. If the money had been truly lost, there would have been no money to buy the stocks on Monday and recover in one day 55% of the Market Average.

    When the Market Average falls it is not the same thing as people losing money. It is a reflection of the Stocks in that average that lost a percent of their value. Also if the individual investor does not sell they do not make a profit nor incur a loss.

    It is regretful that the Federal Government, Wall Street, and the News Medial does not educate the public in a more equitable way and if we don’t get back to knowing all the facts, it will only bring about the second fall sooner. When people know “all” the facts they can make a decision. When they don’t know the facts we get lack of confidence and panic.

    I would like to get on my soap box in defense of the public. You the public need to realize Nothing in the Stock Market is Guaranteed and no Stock in the Market is Safe. Your money is at risk 24 hours a day and any news event, government decision, or Company Failure can derail your investment.

    Further more you need to watch your 401-K and the Corporation it is tied to as you would a rattle snake 4 feet from you leg, you need to watch your IRA as if it were a child playing in the street. These financial plans have proven over and over to not be safe and if other peoples have failed you may be next. Pensions are not much safer as most Corporations are trying to get rid of them and put them off on the Federal Government who pays pennies on the dollar.

    Folks, these are bad times and you need to listen to Susie Orman and people like her who care about families and not just a profit at any cost especially not at the cost of small investors.

    Good luck and good investing, If you need help, check out the list of books I recently placed on this weblog. (a note: if you wander why I don’s shorten the name of the weblog… it is because there are no shortcuts in investing.)

    Always remember that anyone giving advice about the stock market has their own motive… so don’t trust anyone but yourself.

    The end of Round One 10/14/08

    Something happened in the Stock Market last week and this Monday which needs to be looked at by Students of the Market. I don’t mean the professionals that did the manipulation.

    On 10/06/08 the S.M. opened and began to fall and 5 days later it had fallen 1,874 points according to Wikipedia (any mistakes in numbers are mine).

    On 10/13/08 the S.M. opened and began to go up 1,040 points or 55% of what was lost in the preceding week.

    The fact that triggered my suspicion was that all three major averages gained the same amount:

    NYSE gained 11%
    S&P 500 gained 11%
    NASDAQ gained 11%

    Random numbers do not finish the day at the same amount of percent of increase. My point is that the S.M. is no longer random but controlled by the Hedge Funds who have enough Billions of Dollars to drive the Market in any direction on any given day.

    This is what the public witnessed last week and this Monday. The motive for the Hedge Funds to drive the Market down was to scare the Government into action they wanted. This has been the purpose from the beginning when the Banks first went to the Treasury with their hand out for a bail out and then Wall Street wanted in on the action.

    The fall brought about action from all the major banks in the world and that satisfied Wall Street for the moment and the Hedge Funds drove the Market back up over half (55%) of the lost in one day.

    Personally I really don’t want to see Round Two. Round Two will be a down turn of worse proportions when the good money thrown after bad investments fails. The same people that caused the bubble in the first round with no restrictions or regulations on them failed and ran to the Government for a bail out… these same people Banks, Wall Street, Corporations will be back for a second helping.

    Think about it, why should they not, it was so easy. The first “heart attack” has been fixed but the patient is not cured. And surely the Government will want to cure our Hero.

    The second point I would attempt to make with this paper is to restate there is no money lost in the Market as the News Media tries to convince people of and scare them.

    Yes, an individual investor can lose their money by buying high and selling low. But, the person who bought low and sold high took the money lost by the first investor and went to the bank.

    The proof is in the last 6 days of the stock market. If the money had been truly lost, there would have been no money to buy the stocks on Monday and recover in one day 55% of the Market Average.

    When the Market Average falls it is not the same thing as people losing money. It is a reflection of the Stocks in that average that lost a percent of their value. Also if the individual investor does not sell they do not make a profit nor incur a loss.

    It is regretful that the Federal Government, Wall Street, and the News Medial does not educate the public in a more equitable way and if we don’t get back to knowing all the facts, it will only bring about the second fall sooner. When people know “all” the facts they can make a decision. When they don’t know the facts we get lack of confidence and panic.

    I would like to get on my soap box in defense of the public. You the public need to realize Nothing in the Stock Market is Guaranteed and no Stock in the Market is Safe. Your money is at risk 24 hours a day and any news event, government decision, or Company Failure can derail your investment.

    Further more you need to watch your 401-K and the Corporation it is tied to as you would a rattle snake 4 feet from you leg, you need to watch your IRA as if it were a child playing in the street. These financial plans have proven over and over to not be safe and if other peoples have failed you may be next. Pensions are not much safer as most Corporations are trying to get rid of them and put them off on the Federal Government who pays pennies on the dollar.

    Folks, these are bad times and you need to listen to Susie Orman and people like her who care about families and not just a profit at any cost especially not at the cost of small investors.

    Good luck and good investing, If you need help, check out the list of books I recently placed on this weblog. (a note: if you wander why I don’s shorten the name of the weblog… it is because there are no shortcuts in investing.)

    Always remember that anyone giving advice about the stock market has their own motive… so don’t trust anyone but yourself.

    Wow Betsy, Thank you for your direct and sincere response. Is Maitreya a spirit guide or a flesh and blood human?


    People in pain like myself find it easy to ridicule spiritual claims. The true claimants know my humor is not a real threat, just an exploration of silly emotion. On the face of it your concern over money value would seem to demean belief, but there are many (way)weighstations on the elevator to enlightenment.
    The intriguing phrase "negative energy which recoiled from the battlefield" is like Chalmers Johnson's blowback, but is also something more pervasive. The sadism in American culture, the predatory employments that demean the workers, and the exploitation of those without wealth illustrate this force.
    The pattern that emerges on this blog is that I kid people and then become friends when they share their sincere thoughts. Sometimes a little resentful anger makes people think harder.

    Your efforts prove to me you are sincere and value communicating on this blog.
    Do not count me a convert, but I wish you great joy and success in your campaign.

    GEH wrote: Betsy Whitfill, you are an interesting intellectual animal. First you assert that some Messiah is soon to come and solve everything, and then you complain about losing money in the stock market. Didn't the Messiah give you any investment tips?
    If so, share them with us, the sooner the better.

    His "tip" was far more valuable than just which stock to buy/sell. He says that the stock markets have become "gambling casinos", in which the hard earned savings of everyday people are used to make vast profits for the few.
    Their true purpose is to provide capital for businesses and industry...an important and necessary function.

    Actually, he is not a Messiah who will solve everything. From what I have read over many years, he is a teacher who will offer advice, to those willing to listen, as to how humanity can save itself. When you factor in all people everywhere, the who issue of investment changes. Maitreya's interest is in helping men and women save the word by showing the value of justice, sharing, brotherhood.

    The intersection of this spiritual story with the mundane economics of the last several weeks is that years ago, 1988 in fact, he warned this collapse would occur "beginning in Japan", and was inevitable because the rise of commercialism and globalization would create a world wide financial network so interconnected that when one section collapsed, the whole would collapse.

    He gave many other forecasts, published in a book called "Maitreya's Teachings: The Laws of Life" edited by Benjamin Creme and published by Share International Foundation. In a section on cause and effect, he discussed market forces and commercialization, which, he said, were replacing wars and conflicts as means for the "superpowers" to broaden their power and influence around the world. Since you asked, I'll just include a brief series of quotes from the book about this, written in 1989. All this information was distributed very widely and to the media, all the media, and reporters know this, yet nothing has as yet been published. I believe publishing this information would have saved many, many, many lives, which have been lost to terrorism and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Instead we have had government which has dogmatically enabled blind following of market forces.

    From "The Laws of Life":
    "The new creed of the superpowers has become the economy, which is the soul of commercialization, and this represents a serious new threat to the world, one that could even compromise human life. The quality of commercialization is greed, and it will affect all nations. This negative energy which recoiled from the battlefield is a force without eyes or mind and will create a very hostile world. But although the politicians believe that commercialization is the future of the human race, they cannot control this energy. There is a counter force growing which is emerging from the increasing awareness of the people. Examples of this are the stories about the contamination of food and environment and the demands that something urgently be done. Current events created by the drive for commercialization throughout the world are part of the pattern that will result in the major collapse of the stock markets.
    Just as destructive forces had found a home in the fundamentalist ideology of commercialization, so it had found a weak spot in religious fundamentalism"
    page 102, 1989.

    All this talk about Obama and revolution. What are you saying, Sandy? It's far from clear.

    When you blast unions your examples are about the least typical anyone could imagine. Having worked non-union in a hospital myself, I did a quick search for the nitty gritty vis a vis that frame of yours...
    http://allnurses.com/forums/f323/union-will-lower-my-pay-292704.html

    Why don't you talk about the working conditions of illegals? That's your system after all...without the incumbrances of regulation.

    Hedges is right. Our dividend oriented "industry" has gotten into going through people with gusto...
    http://www.commondreams.org/view/2008/10/13-4

    Sandy I agree with some of what you said in your post, before working in International Equities I worked for the Communications Workers Union and in my opinion both corporate America and the unions are exactly the same. They both exploit workers at the bottom so that top management gets all the credit and compensation. However, as far as racism in America goes, it exists, period! You can try and deny it all you want, but it exists! And it plays a role in how we treat each other as a people. And if you think the Republican Party is going to do anything more for you than the Democratic Party you're only kidding yourself. This current Republican Party (and I include Senator McCain in that statement) only care about advancing themselves and if you think your're somehow included in that as a minority you'd better think again. Now I certainly don't agree with a lot of what the Democrats have to say, (in fact I agree with the Republicans on a lot of things including family values and being conservative when it comes to our money) but I do agree with Democrats message of inclusion, equal rights and holding to some kind of principle over the years. Much of what we receive now in terms of time off from work, sick leave, equal pay and even domestic partners (which many of my HETEROSEXUAL Republican friends are now taking advantage of BTW) were ideas put forth and in many cases (but not all) implemented by the Democratic Party. I always find it amusing when my Republican friends put down the Democrats, while taking full advantage of the programs that they put forth. I also find it extremely hypocritical.

    As a biracial woman I will never vote for a party that 1) does not see me as an equal 2) does not see me as a true American 3) continues to show outright negligence and corruption in all aspects of their party 4) continues to divide the country 5) continues to apply 1950's solutions to 21st century problems 6) seems to have no compassion for human lives, outside of their own 7) seems intent on going to war with every nation that is not exactly like us 8) are hypocrites that can't even clean up the corruption in their own party 9) want to change our constitution 10) wants to take away my rights as a woman and the list goes on. And as far as minority communities doing for themselves and not waiting for a handout from the Democrats, I think Senator Obama has addressed that time and again which has made him not so popular in many minority communities. But please, by all means, vote Republican.

    Linda M

    ROUND FIVE:

    Since you brought up REVOLUTION, might any interested party WATCH the video interviews on PBS show Tavis Smiley for August 29, right after OBAMA'S DNA talk.

    http://www.pbs.org/kcet/tavissmiley/archive/200808/20080828.html

    OBAMA supports a REVOLUTION, not exactly for my people but you did open the door.

    We can talk later brother if you have any words left afte watching videos.

    And they say old men are crazy, only some are.

    ROUND FIVE:

    Since you brought up REVOLUTION, might any interested party WATCH the video interviews on PBS show Tavis Smiley for August 29, go to pbs.org and look for the page, they have a nice archive of the interiews of OBAMA supports and the REVOLUTION, not exactly for my people but you did open the door.

    We can talk later brother if you have any words left afte watching videos.

    And they say old men are crazy, only some are.

    Round five:

    The markets will correct themselves--

    Soros and Buffet have no interest in you and I, the middleclass. I say again, Buffet invested in Goldmans Sachs - it was a "special" dividend paying PREFERRED STOCK not the junk sold to the avg. investor, ie. Washington Mutual, the shareholders were ZERO'd out, investors like Buffet and Soros, walked away.. WHOLE.

    I was an accidental stockbroker from 1998 to 2002 -THE AGE OF THE INTERNET BUBBLE.

    The internet acutually self perpetuated it's own growth, while the internet seemed to have endless potenetial, more and more "wanna be investors" entered the market because the could LOG ON.. to the internet, and they did - "locked to the box".. and they were SUCKED into the market.

    More suckers in the market means more suckers SELLING stocks. So, the market added a gagillion new stockbrokers - most of whom studied to PASS the test and studied little if any of the principles of the industry.

    Brokers were there to "churn and burn", brokers make $$$ when you buy and when you "fly". Most knew little about the companies they were pimping. (much like now)

    The bubble burst but the FASHION of being in the market stayed. The internet, and yes other conditions, have put the market at the finger tips of investors most of which have no idea what they are doing - hence buying stock in companies that are priced for earnings that could not happen in this life, 5-10 times earnings just wont do it for most.

    the market will come back, it always does and some will be much more cautious having learned their lessons.

    Round Four:

    I have experienced FIRST hand the $ wasted on the able bodied POOR.

    You can take your "Republicans are RACIST" accusations somewhere else - I am darker skinned than OBAMA, heck I've been called "beaner", "wet back" by my own family but the worst was a slam specilly for me because I was in college and working two jobs, my family called me "coconut" (my cousins aunts uncles called me that referring to the brown skin on the outside and the white on the inside) and sometimes just plain old "white girl".Was I to assume they think only whites work?

    Obviously it did not change my drive to work and earn.

    This faux racism has caused my family self inflicted poverty, for three generations.

    The only ones keeping them down is THEM. But the DEMS play them every election with promises of equality. How about starting with equal WORK and EFFORT.

    It's an endless cycle.

    And, dont get me started on the UNIONS, that ALWAYS support DEMS, yeah you guessed it, I was in a union, for 6 years.

    The only thing I ever saw the union do, other than destroying the ability for any of us to work for fair pay, was to restore the job status of someone who entered the workplace, while drunk, with his girlfriend and stole merchandise --- THEY GOT the THIEF HIS JOB BACK!

    And it was not even a union where there should have been one --- unions were originally there to support workers in high risk (life threatning) jobs, steel workers, skyrise workers, fisherman, coal miners - those that put their lives on the line daily.

    Grocery store workers NEED a union, the TEACHERS need a union - why are more and more teachers taking a PAYCUT to work at PRIVATE schools??? Why are nurses taking pay cuts to work at NON- UNION hospitals???

    UNIONS for the most part do not work, literally, unless it's to line their own pockets.

    Any other takers??? Grady you still there?

    I agree with Mr. Soros' opinion that our financial markets have not, do not and will not correct themselves. Mr. Kevin Phillips shared this same opinion during an earlier Journal broadcast.

    I have heard the concern and frustration (perhaps on behalf of his audience?)in Mr. Moyer's voice when he asks his esteemed guests: 'What's to be done?"

    Most of the broadcasts and print artices over the past several weeks have dealt with opinions about the many factors that have lead to this financial crisis and the common threads are: repeal of, lack of and lax financial regulation, greed, irrational behavior, the creation of sub prime lending pracitces, mortgage backed securities, collateralized debt obligations, collateralized debt securities, negligent and preditory lending practices.

    What I have not heard, but for Mr. Soros and Mr. Philliips, or read about is a recognition that the financial system in the US has a flaw which has been exacerbated. The flaw is that there are innate conflicts of interest between the financial markets and those regulating the financial markets and an extrodinary lack of transparency in decision making.
    I agree with Mr. Soros that "pure" capitalism and "pure" socialism are ideaologies that are imperfect. Each fundamental ideaology is flawed. His suggestion that, perhaps through thinking critically, as a public, we can create a better financial system is, I believe, the only way we can have some degree of hope and assurance of improving the current economic situation and avoiding this type of meltdown from happening again.

    We, as a public, cannot abdicate our interests and responsibilities to the "experts", many of whom were in part responsible for causing this crisis. Only by takng part in the dialogue and sharing our thoughts, concerns and suggestions can we restore consumer confidence and hope to correct the financial system.

    One model for assisting in the revitalization of our economy and ensuring its future health would be to create a non profit charitable organization the purpose of which would be to act as an overseer of the government financial regulatory bodies (an overseer of the overseers)with the ability to file writs of mandamus to force the governmental overseers to act in the public interest in carrying out their responsibilities of overseeing the financial markets through enforcement of existing regulations and enactment of new regulations, if necessary.

    This organization was in fact created under the Laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on October 8, 2008. The Financial Regulation Foundation, Inc., is an advocacy, educational and charitable organization that seeks to foster, protect, enhance and promote in the public interest the financial resources and economic stability of the US through the use of law, publications, forums and educational programming.

    We are in the process of attempting to disseminate our purpose and seek comments from the public so that we can decide whether to pursue an Application for Recognition of Exemption under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code and to gain momentum and support for our purpose.

    Thank you for the opportunity to post our comments and concerns.

    Melanie Hagopian, Esquire
    President
    Financial Resources Foundation, Inc.

    Don't vote, Sandy-lou. People like you can't win under this socialism. You need to go over and contract in Russia where you'll fit in. Nazi comments are never wasted, the more you use them the more they dilute.
    How long did it take you to make manager after you started flipping burgers? You said something about 4 jobs and 3 generations I think. (Oldsters have poor recall sometimes, shout louder with emphasis, my dear.) Anyway, you're doing fine now and have nothing to complain about.
    Why are you worried about rich people's money? It ain't yours. Be happy with your centavos and your frothy pulque, Sandino.
    Viva la Revolutione'!

    I'm only 28, in the waist.

    Future Executive Director Melanie Hagopian: How much were you planning to pay yourself when the tax exempt donations begin flowing in? Maybe $100,00, naw that's chump change considering the recompense of those you'd oversee. How about around what the Freddie Mac guy got, sounds equitable. (The hundred million club) Your 501 3c sounds like the icing on the cake. Got a desk for me if I leave Goldman Sachs?

    Future Executive Director Melanie Hagopian: How much were you planning to pay yourself when the tax exempt donations begin flowing in? Maybe $100,00, naw that's chump change considering the recompense of those you'd oversee. How about around what the Freddie Mac guy got, sounds equitable. (The hundred million club) Your 501 3c sounds like the icing on the cake. Got a desk for me if I leave Goldman Sachs.

    Grady, I might assume with name like that you are in you 80's.... but we are wrong to ASSUME, and so I will not.

    I am in my mid 40's -- a third generation American of 100% Mexican descent and yes FEMALE, your NAZI comment was wasted on me and a WRONG ASSUMPTION.

    I am NOT a DEMOCRATE, I do not need their EMPTY unfullfilled promises to the POOR and Minorities (LIKE ME), I find DEMOCRATE PARTY politics to be REPRESSIVE -- the proof is in the 40+++ YEARS of the POOR voting DEMOCRATE - FOR NOTHING. The Democate policitcal machine gives big $$$ and consideration to few leaving little for the POOR. AND Obama will tell his supporters, yeah get a job, but wait until I make one for you.

    HOW CAN YOU OFFER SOMEONE A JOB IF YOU BASH THE EMPLOYER. Many of my people have been waiting for these promises and have done very little to midgate their poverty and so the illegals take the jobs.

    I'm not a follower of Bill Cosby, but I did hear him say something that hit home....

    An jobless American will look at a job flipping burgers and say ' Im NOT gonna work for minimum wage" where as a Somali will take the job thinking " Im gonna manage this place someday".

    I worked two jobs to pay for my college. Have changed careers 4 times, twice out of necessity and NEVER once relied on loans or the government to assist me. I worked for everything I have.

    I WILL NEVER SUPPORT the opressive Democratic Party unless they change their ways.

    This minority may be in the political minority as well and if Obama wins the election - there will be plenty of losing to go around.

    Grady, I might assume with name like that you are in you 80's.... but we are wrong to ASSUME, and so I will not.

    I am in my mid 40's -- a third generation American of 100% Mexican descent and yes FEMALE, your NAZI comment was wasted on me and a WRONG ASSUMPTION.

    I am NOT a DEMOCRATE, I do not need their EMPTY unfullfilled promises to the POOR and Minorities (LIKE ME), I find DEMOCRATE PARTY politics to be REPRESSIVE -- the proof is in the 40+++ YEARS of the POOR voting DEMOCRATE - FOR NOTHING. The Democate policitcal machine gives big $$$ and consideration to few leaving little for the POOR. AND Obama will tell his supporters, yeah get a job, but wait until I make one for you.

    HOW CAN YOU OFFER SOMEONE A JOB IF YOU BASH THE EMPLOYER. Many of my people have been waiting for these promises and have done very little to midgate their poverty and so the illegals take the jobs.

    I'm not a follower of Bill Cosby, but I did hear him say something that hit home....

    An jobless American will look at a job flipping burgers and say ' Im NOT gonna work for minimum wage" where as a Somali will take the job thinking " Im gonna manage this place someday".

    I worked two jobs to pay for my college. Have changed careers 4 times, twice out of necessity and NEVER once relied on loans or the government to assist me. I worked for everything I have.

    I WILL NEVER SUPPORT the opressive Democratic Party unless they change their ways.

    This minority may be in the political minority as well and if Obama wins the election - there will be plenty of losing to go around.

    Dave/Save: it rhymes. People have to have living waged jobs to save, my man. The median wage in the U.S. was only 32K (MSNBC) before the downturn, and that is skued by some astronomical sums at the top end. Two salary couples who commute are being evicted by gas prices (PBS NOW segment this week).

    Here I sit making $42.75 an hour to spout off at the mouth for rich people, and I'm really joking around with a pseudonym on this blog. I owe more every two weeks than I make. Only a rescue bill bonus saved me from default last week (medical bills). My workmates don't save except in retirement plans. They think that's for suckers. If you're not a trust fund baby here you still have to act the part. Hard times intensify the principle. I can imagine what poor office women are now forced to buy or pay into. "Give us $10 so you can wear jeans and sneakers this week." "We're taking up for Chloe's combination honeymoon and babyshower." Do some sociology 'fore you start barking, Dog.

    I bet Soros ain't saving money. He's a crazy little gambler. Moyers probably cain't save none with his extended family pulling on his coattail. You have to pay people, Dave-Save, before they straighten up and Behave.

    I agree with Mr. Soros' opinion that our financial markets have not, do not and will not correct themselves. Mr. Kevin Phillips shared this same opinion during an earlier Journal broadcast.

    I have heard the concern and frustration (perhaps on behalf of his audience?)in Mr. Moyer's voice when he asks his esteemed guests: 'What's to be done?"

    Most of the broadcasts and print artices over the past several weeks have dealt with opinions about the many factors that have lead to this financial crisis and the common threads are: repeal of, lack of and lax financial regulation, greed, irrational behavior, the creation of sub prime lending pracitces, mortgage backed securities, collateralized debt obligations, collateralized debt securities, negligent and preditory lending practices.

    What I have not heard, but for Mr. Soros and Mr. Philliips, or read about is a recognition that the financial system in the US has a flaw which has been exacerbated. The flaw is that there are innate conflicts of interest between the financial markets and those regulating the financial markets and an extrodinary lack of transparency in decision making.
    I agree with Mr. Soros that "pure" capitalism and "pure" socialism are ideaologies that are imperfect. Each fundamental ideaology is flawed. His suggestion that, perhaps through thinking critically, as a public, we can create a better financial system is, I believe, the only way we can have some degree of hope and assurance of improving the current economic situation and avoiding this type of meltdown from happening again.

    We, as a public, cannot abdicate our interests and responsibilities to the "experts", many of whom were in part responsible for causing this crisis. Only by takng part in the dialogue and sharing our thoughts, concerns and suggestions can we restore consumer confidence and hope to correct the financial system.

    One model for assisting in the revitalization of our economy and ensuring its future health would be to create a non profit charitable organization the purpose of which would be to act as an overseer of the government financial regulatory bodies (an overseer of the overseers)with the ability to file writs of mandamus to force the governmental overseers to act in the public interest in carrying out their responsibilities of overseeing the financial markets through enforcement of existing regulations and enactment of new regulations, if necessary.

    This organization was in fact created under the Laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on October 8, 2008. The Financial Regulation Foundation, Inc., is an advocacy, educational and charitable organization that seeks to foster, protect, enhance and promote in the public interest the financial resources and economic stability of the US through the use of law, publications, forums and educational programming.

    We are in the process of attempting to disseminate our purpose and seek comments from the public so that we can decide whether to pursue an Application for Recognition of Exemption under section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code and to gain momentum and support for our purpose.

    Thank you for the opportunity to post our comments and concerns.

    Melanie Hagopian, Esquire
    President
    Financial Resources Foundation, Inc.

    Soros seems right re the world scene would work better if we'd save more, and other nations consume more...as Greider has argued in the past. And didn't J Galbraith say this too? Larry Peterson's article at Dollars&Sense backs up what Naomi Klein has been saying. The understanding is coming together, but of course it could have come a lot faster. As far as what Soros said re kickstarting the credit game again, dunno if it was clear in his mind but it wasn't all that clear to me. Anyway, it always seemed a good idea to modify the old structural readjustment trip so as to put a thumb in the Blowback Reservoir leak. I'm sorry if all this seems like code talk. Lemmie try to be more explicit.

    I tried to post what's below at Colmes' site, but he's saying my browser's outta date.

    I promise you McCain people that we Obama supporters do not support planting bombs at the Pentagon and that most of us are reconciled for the rest of our lives to endorse some version of market forces (or at least to acceptance of same during the brief time that remains for us). It's all in the details, folks. And I realize few of us in this society have time for'em. But don't be like lower-middle class in the 40s who rejected FDR caused they happened into money...or because someone they knew and respected in that era bumped into an inheritance. Or because you think your income next year might attain $250,005.00. Don't settle for that fate! No, don't do it! Instead, this time be "richer by far with a satisfied mind"! Your Republican propaganda masters (your public servants) only wanted more dough for the wealthy jammed in the the U.S. "rescue." That's why they opposed it for a time.

    The Institute for Policy Studies, for instance, calculates a $200 billion Main Street Stimulus Package would be a superior package.
    http://www.ips-dc.org/articles/740

    I also read this that went up yesterday.

    And look at Europe...our bailout has none of the meager stipulations and caps on the robber barons their measures include. No matter how meager, theirs are still working better. Why? Because common folks understand the caps will make them work. Here in this place The Street thinks it will always be able to dress up and re-serve the exact same left overs. It could be Streets of Fire in every berg, but they'd keep on with it.

    A word to the wise...get to the details no matter how long ya gotta wear that thinking cap.

    Georgie Soros: Take your "football" and go home. We can play a better game with a pig's bladder or a hard ball of latex. Retire your knob while it's still attached. We're tired of people like you manipulating our politics. Cram your money...

    Sandy: I love it when you retract your "ass." But then you were correct when you hokey-pokeyed it in. Seems like a smart operator like you would be beyond the children's game of political parties by now. Assuming you are female, you must be quite young. You remind me of a college aged Young American for Freedom (Hitler Youths of the Republican apparatus).
    Someday, when we get real elections, I hope they'll be free and fair. Like that could ever happen with all this chicken bickerin'.

    Betsy Whitfill, you are an interesting intellectual animal. First you assert that some Messiah is soon to come and solve everything, and then you complain about losing money in the stock market. Didn't the Messiah give you any investment tips?
    If so, share them with us, the sooner the better.

    A couple days ago, I posted a question asking if this economic crisis was a form of controlling. Then today I followed a link, http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7065205277695921912 , posted by flow. I haven’t watched the entire video, it’s over 2 hours long and I keep pausing it to check its validity and do further research, but it appears to have answered my question. It explains the Deposit Money Creation Cycle and how we are all wage slaves; we all work for the banks. It shows how the fictitious money that the Federal Reserve creates is in direct correlation with our fictitious debt which becomes real through contracts.

    Also about 19 minutes into to it, it talks about how a Jerome Daly from Minn. won a foreclosure court case against a bank. It didn’t go into too much detail, so I googled it and found this page, http://www.freedomdomain.com/banking/credit_river1.html . Here it talks about "Failure of Consideration" and "No state shall make any ‘THING’ but Gold and Silver Coin a tender in payment of debts..." I hope this doesn’t give anyone who is going through a foreclosure or bankruptcy any false hope, but if you are having problems, you might want to watch this video with a lawyer (remember: finding the right lawyer can be like finding the right doctor, you might need a second or third opinion).

    In reference to the Federal Reserve Act of 1907:
    “I am a most unhappy man. I have unwittingly ruined my country. A great industrial nation is now controlled by its system of credit. We are no longer a government by free opinion, no longer a government by conviction and vote of the majority, but a government by the opinion and duress of a small group of dominant men.” ~ Woodrow Wilson 1919

    Funnily enough, a post I made on an earlier topic on your blog referenced Charles Mackay's classic-with particular emphasis on the South-Sea Bubble and Tulipomania. I thoroughly enjoyed your interview with George Soros, and found his approach to the current economic three- ringed circus refreshingly sensible. Markets and more importantly men,cannot and do not regulate themselves. What they do manage is to eventually collapse under the weight of their own foolishness. But "irrational faith" in just about anything going (as evidenced by dear old McKay's treatise on the subject) appears to be a hallmark of the human condition. Humans need to believe in stories, as set forth in another classic, Terry Pratchett's The Science of Discworld II: The Globe. Or as in The Science of Discworld III: Darwin's Watch,
    "'But you'd like to think there's someone in charge, yes?'said Ridcully, gently. 'Of everything, I mean.'" And Ponder replies "'Yes! Yes, I would, Sir! Not a big beard in the sky, but...something!Some kind of frame, some sense that good and bad have real meanings!...It'd be nice to know that underneath it all is some kind of...sense.'" (p.167)
    Unfortunately, turning the "free market" into a kind of tin god doesn't work very well, and Adam Smith was definitely a sign post in the wrong direction.

    Of course, there's always the Darwin family motto, quoted on the last page of The Science of Discworld III: "cave et aude-watch, and listen."

    I have to take issue with what Kathleen Hall Jamieson said on your October 10th show about smear campaigns. While it's true that the Ayers business is simply nonsense, I believe that the Keating Five story is completely relevant today. His profuse apologies notwithstanding, Senator McCain was involved in a sleazy operation that ultimately cost taxpayers a lot of money (maybe not compared to the $850 billion tab we have now, but still a lot).

    McCain has been a champion of deregulation his whole public career, and deregulation is what got us in our present predicament.
    Obama, by contrast, is guilty of nothing vis-à-vis Bill Ayers.

    Ms. Jamieson is guilty of offering one of those false equivalencies Paul Krugman has been talking about.

    George Soros,
    Noblesse Oblige is the obligation of the noble. Instead of the noble rich: we have the greedy rich who have no concern for the quality of other people's lives. Our economic system is designed to satisfy the greedy instead of provide for the needy. The lower and middle class has been undermined by an effort to steal from them and give to the rich. They are enticed by get rich quick ploys that do not work with very few exceptions. False hopes prevent action to correct injustice and inequity.
    In the mean time their wages go down and their expenses go up preventing them from supporting the top heavy economy. The poor and the middle class can not save or invest in the system. The demand can not support the supply and the economy fails. Without its foundation, the whole economy washes away. The greedy rich are also big time losers.
    We need to increase wages and provide a positive income tax that provides the equity and justice that supports the economy and the quality of people's lives.

    EH writes: The simple solution is to let the Free Market work on the way down and seek its own level. This would allow the investor to choose to sell or hold without the fear that Wall Street (to include the Hedge Funds), the Banks, the Treasury and the Congress are manipulating the Stock Market.

    Ahem. Far be it from me to speak in technicalities about "the solution", but as one of the just folks out here in the bush, I tell you that you are speaking to a select, educated in finance audience. The rest of us are only in the market because it is the only way we can keep up with the cost of living, and because our govt/financial wizzards govern our pension plans. IRA's are full of requirements. What is simple to the esoteric financial thinkers is rubbish to us. We are angry because we have been forced into this position and are being punished.

    The "market" assumes all are on a level playing field. Not so. Not so at all.
    I believe that this is the end of the road for "market forces" in the eyes and pocketbooks of the millions of people who make this world go 'round with their labor, their dreams, their ethics. The end is truly near.

    There is a lot of anger in the web log about certain people. 10/13/08

    I will not defend them but I will ask you, who like me, are so angry at the failure of our Federal Government to seek transparent simple measures to fix the system and stop telling us it is too complicated for us to understand.

    The simple solution is to let the Free Market work on the way down and seek its own level. This would allow the investor to choose to sell or hold without the fear that Wall Street (to include the Hedge Funds), the Banks, the Treasury and the Congress are manipulating the Stock Market.

    That was rejected and a form of Wealthy Socialism began as the F.G. chose to save certain Corporations and not others at taxpayer expense.

    I have spoken about the second choice and will not do so here. My purpose for speaking in this paper is to ask you the “Angry” people to do some research.

    I suggest you check into the Investment Banks and their relation to the Future Markets and especially in the Commodity of Crude Oil. Find what their relationship was with certain International Oil Companies.

    If you look far enough you will see it was the Investment Banks on behalf of the Oil Companies that bid up the price of Crude and gave US (us) the $4.00+ Gallon of Gasoline and $4.75+ Gallon of Diesel Fuel. The high cost of Gas and Fuel was blamed wrongly on the middle east. It was your own people (Wall Street & Oil Companies) here in the US that caused the mess we are now in.

    They did so by taking, so much of the limited money that people who work for a living, have to spare out of their pockets so to speak. This also caused a rise in Food Prices because of Diesel Trucks transporting goods. Between the two food and fuel our families did not have enough to pay the mortgage. The squeeze between food, shelter, transportation, and medical was too much for too many.

    It all blew up in their faces and the Banks panicked and Wall Street panicked and the F.G. panicked. The rest is history….

    I hope someone does look into this and tell us the names of the Investment Banks and Oil Companies. I believe they alone cause this recession to turn into something much worse by which I mean a hell of a lot of pain for Main Street families.

    Also have you noticed the fall of gasoline prices as we come close to the election? It would seem the Oil Companies do not want to incite the anger of the people close to an election. I say it is too late and the incumbent should lose their jobs like the people and lets see if we can find honorable men and women who want to represent the American Family….

    There is a way…. 10/13/08

    If, the American people who are now sobering up from the unattainable American Dream of being Rich want to face reality and take their Country back they can do so.

    We Americans were given an excellent Government (forget Democrats and Republicans also forget Democracy and Capitalist as these are words of division and the best Government is were a People stand together.) If Americans truly want to stand up and stand together we can put people in Government to represent US (us).

    You were given a Government of family and community and a way to defend your home against unwanted intruders. Use your power to vote and take that Government back from the Incumbent, the Corporation, the Lobbyist, all of those groups who have contrived to pick your pocket while making themselves rich. I will say they have done an excellent job and it looks like if you the voter do not act they will make their losses their new profits as they empty the Treasury and add Trillions to the debt.

    There is a simple way to take back the riches from the Supper Wealthy the 1% you hear about that own more then the bottom 90%. (They also own the 9% between them and you, not in riches but in “service” to the almighty dollar.) Still you can have your Government take their money in a legal way.

    Here is how, the new Representatives and Senators you elect can change the law that governs Capital Gains… the new law simply has to state that everyone without exception has to pay 50% tax on a 100% gain and all Gains will be treated as Short Term and no long term gains will exist.

    So for every dollar the super rich make they will be required to pay the Government 50 cents. No loop holes or exceptions.

    This law would apply to all individuals, families, Corporations, Foundations, Trust, and any other entity that makes money and does so within the borders of the US be they foreign or citizen.

    It would not be long before the Debt of the USA was paid off and then the Treasury would have enough to pay for the entire Country’s roads, bridges, sewer and water, clean water and air, and fund a program to develop all the

    alternative energy projects, research a way to reverse global warming on behalf of the people.

    Then we could have free health care, free education, and a high standard of living that did not injure nature.

    I realize most of you will scoff at my proposal. It is a different American Dream that does not promise Riches but promises to take care of people. The American Family and allow for individuals to pursue ideas that would benefit all America, not just the 1%!

    A whole new life awaits you if you can stand together and take back your Government and watch Congress carefully firing the Representatives and Senators who rule against your family.

    Let us not forget the lost of most of the Bill of Rights in the last 8 years. Your Congress should know that as they change the law on Capital Gains they also must reverse and do away with the laws passed that took our Bill of Rights form us. You must realize that it is not just the Constitution and the Declaration that are meaningful and important but also the Bill of Rights that protects families and individuals and has served us well for 200 plus years. There are implied rights and protections in all three documents that are worth your, the people’s protection.


    Food for thought concerning the monetary system:

    Zeitgeist: Addendum! Now playing @ google.

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7065205277695921912

    No fouls, no strikeouts,
    no penalities...
    NO GAME!

    If there is:
    NO Accountability;
    NO Penalities;
    NO Responsibilities;
    NO Financial Recovery!

    The result will be bailing out the boat, but not repairing the leak, & any recovery will only let the "BIG PLAYERS" have time to EXIT with theirs & ours & leave us SLOWLY TWISTING IN THE WIND!

    We really need to bail, but, we MUST REPAIR or we will return to DESPAIR!

    Paulson has had how many weeks to get started on a plan, when he said HE must have $700 Billion in unmarked bills within 48hrs. or we suffer!

    Bring back Jim Baker & other smart former Treasury Sect. to get us going on recovery & the new pres. can have time to pick the right person for the job. Or, maybe the treasury should be a board as is the FED. Fire all the FED today also!

    BUY TOXIC PAPER! GIVMEE A BREAK!

    Billy Bob, Fla.

    Consistently, humanity has sought for something, religions, ideologies, dogmas, theories, etc…, to place its faith within because we, like markets, desire certainty, and predictability to aid us in our decision making processes. After all, we depend on these laws, maximums, theories, and propositions to make sense of a world which at times can be very nonsensical. For example, the Market Fundamentalism forwarded by Milton Friedman and other conservatives on the surface made sense to many. If left to their own devices, markets would self regulate, and there was no place for government intervention. In fact, most problems within markets could be traced back to government meddling in areas which they had little or no knowledge. Surly, the coercive nature of government intervention stifled free markets. So, for most conservatives the best government was that one which governed least.

    However, within this idea rested the fatal proposition, that men and markets were naturally self regulating. If we could depend upon humanity to regulate itself, then why did we have need of human law? And, if markets are composed of human agents, who are actively engaging in self regulated transactions between each other, then why is there the need for binding contracts? Reviewing the tenants forwarded by conservative economists, it would appear that markets were rational, but human beings were both rational and ethical. When, in fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Although markets and men have the capacity to self-regulate, there exists no guarantee that they will.

    For instance, why did mortgage brokers knowingly market mortgages to families who they knew did not have the income to sustain their monthly payments? Why didn’t the mortgage brokers regulate their own unethical behavior? Why did borrowers enter into contractual obligations which they knew were beyond their means? Why did the borrowers not regulate their own behavior? Why weren’t the mortgages within these bundled securities evaluated before being purchased by investment banks? Why didn’t the investment banks regulate their transactions? This entire cascading sequence of negligence of self-governance was brought about by the lure of potential gain for all of the concerned parties, and ethics was the first victim. The actions that should have been taken were ignored because by doing so they insured short term gains for each agent. In short, the borrower got the house of their dreams, the mortgage broker got his commission, and the investment banks got what on the surface appeared to be sound mortgage securities with a good return for their investors, or did they?

    I believe that the Community Reinvestment Act passed in 1977 was Building Block # 1 of the current economic crisis. This was a well intentioned act that served the American people very well until real estate values warped to a truly unaffordable level. I am sure that some people were taken advantage of by real estate brokers and mortage brokers ... but most of the buyers were savvy enough to realize that they really couldn't afford that $500,000 house they were buying on a $50,000 income. We are a spoiled group of consumer brats and a broad based feeling of consumer entitlement has also fed this mortage disaster and resultant economic crisis. Then bring in the Wall Street boys and they cooked up their little phony mortgage securities deal and that just put some bad frosting on an already bad cake. I don't think that Wall Street had an irrational faith in the markets ... I think that they just pushed hard to see how much money they could make on one of their schemes and how far they could push the envelope of sound business practices. I can't imagine that any average intelligent American had/has any kind of real faith in the stock market. After all it is a gamble. Sometimes it pays off ... and sometimes it doesn't.

    Something inherent in human nature that causes boom to bust cycles ... GREED and believing the myth that you can get something for nothing.

    In a different interview, George Soros offered five elements of a financial solution that he said would fix the problem. However, he also said the USA would have waning influence.

    So what happens with our overwhelming military power? A country with waning influence that still holds massive military power is a frightening presence on the world stage. We must expect that the rest of the world will take steps to counter this situation, and so it seems to be happening. Hopefully we will tone down our imperial attitudes. We really must stage an economic recovery in order not to be a dangerous force in the world.

    How do we do this? George Soros's five major elements for recovery were limited to those steps that a financier would be thinking about, though he notes that we have been consuming more than we produce. I argue that this is not a problem that can be fixed with financial measures alone. I suggest that the heart of the problem is our diminished production activity which I attribute to an unwillingness to accept real innovation in the way we do things.

    Jack Martin in an earlier discussion reminded us that Ronald Reagan was told by Jim Wright, "You can't have an economy by washing each others cars and delivering pizza: Voodoo economics is a debt recipe with Depression sauce." So I argue, the essential element of the recovery will depend on revitalizing our industrial capacity, thus getting above the service economy that we now are said to have.

    I, and others, have been working on personal transportation solutions that allow us to live as we do now, but still are able to quickly get around yet still use very little fuel. It is reasonable to expect well over 100 mpg if a very different vehicle is allowed. This would be an honest and serious reduction in consumption. A competitor of mine can be seen at www.aptera.com where their product is close to a marketable stage. My solution is a little more exotic and is still in the process of being fabricated. That can be seen at http://www.miastrada.com . I think it is a better answer. However, these are just examples of products that could be a basis of a revitalized automobile industry. The miastrada site discusses putting the US industrial capacity to work on a war-like production effort. A range of possible vehicles can be seen at http://www.auto.xprize.org.
    Then the economy of the country might really get revitalized. And we might be able to continue to live much like we do now.

    If we were to take the innovative path I suggest, we would clearly be in the lead in fighting global warming, and that might make the world think of us as true leaders.

    Perhaps we could even lead away from the present path to world conflict.

    Sorry, got a little carried away and retract the Ass statement.

    OH YEAH, I forgot the deregulation basher - dereg did not cause this, the pirates are our own ELECTED officials that decided to raid the piggybank (fondly tagged Frannie Muk) ON THEIR OWN WATCH- that's and INSIDE JOB.

    And what they could not take with their own hands they GAVE to people and organizations, uh, that would be the ones that contributed huge $$$ (yes I'm counting the "bundling" jobs too) to the same ELECTED OFFICIALS. Where I come from, -that's called a KICKBACK, BRIBE, BROWN BAG AND IT's illegal here in the USA.

    Deregulation MY ASS !
    (it's no coincidence the ASS is the mascot for the DEMOCRATES)

    Holy CR-P Batman, this is making us all THINK---except for the guy bashing capitalism- ask the french and italians how it's working for them ITS NOT.

    And except for the Soros lover - you and Moyer are "something". Soros has made a gazillion $$ in this mess as has Buffet, and that's just the appetizer. They are not givers unless you are OBAMA. Let's keep the THINKING GOING -- why would Soros back OBAMA, or is OBAMA supporting Soros???

    Well anyway, we all know Obama will take $$ from anyone - EVEN TERRISTS! HE-L, even my 5 year old knows not to take candy from strangers. Why would Ayers support OBAMA or is Obama supporting Ayers?????

    Our own elected reps are in this up to their ears -- and some of you can't wait to RE-ELECT them!!!!Look if any of the videos at you tube is in context, hence TRUE, (LIKE ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=usvG-s_Ssb0 )

    what the heck goes on in DC...... these guys and gals need to be in PRISON where the inmates can show them a little JUSTICE.

    I will not vote for socialism,
    I will not vote for racism,
    I will not vote for anyone supporting (literally) criminals.

    Sugar, I might not be "qualified" to be president, senator or US representative.... but I sure as SH-T could not do worse.

    To: David F. 10/12/08 4:55AM
    From: Anonymous9

    Where to start? I have for my on amusement been writing short stories, essays, and commentary for some time… it seemed to go like this: In my younger years I read many books on philosophy, psychology, religion, literature, and self educated myself but that is all I will claim. As I grew older in years I began to write about things of interest.

    I began my relationship with the Stock Market in 1970 and kid my friends by saying I have a Master Degree in Stock Market Works. Do not take this to seriously as I will explain it with hopefully some humor.

    I never looked at the small stuff, the small decisions or cost. That was academic as the cost of buying and selling is in every transaction and the decision to buy and sell was also. If I wanted a stock I called and said to buy at market or sell at market. Years later I learned to put a Stop on all buys to protect my investment… I can’t tell you how important that became to do.

    Back to my story, I never had losses in my investments as I saw any actual loss as the cost of my education. If I attended college I would be charged tuition and other cost for learning specific types of knowledge.

    I saw it the same way in the market. First there were fundamentals to learn and then technical’s to learn and the list grew as I bought and sold stock. Then I learned about different types of stocks and my education began to cost quite a bit. I tried to keep up with too much…

    I began to settle on a few stocks on the NASDAQ Exchange and began to make money which meant my learning stopped

    Later in my investing I began to invest in the New York Stock Exchange and my learning began anew and my cost returned. By now I felt I had finally earned my Bachelor Degree in Stock Market Investing.

    But the story gets better, after years of making good profits I decided I wanted a Master Degree in Stock Market Trading. I lost money on every transaction until I realized that Short term trading was vastly different from Long term investing. Short Term Trading is almost all psychological while Long Term Investing can use Fundamentals and Technical’s to help with the

    decisions but and this is a big but, the decision to buy is still mostly psychological. I spent enough (losses) to justify having earned my Masters Degree in Trading

    So that is my story and I am sticking to it. Things settled down and I realized I was a very good investor and a not so good at all trader. This is when I began to realize that the value of a stock was what someone was willing to pay for it on the day it was bought, no more no less. This is why I now say the Stock Market is not mathematical but psychological.

    There are all types of clichés, good and bad advice, and mostly professionals with their own motives telling you what will benefit them and not you. It really is an Individual type of activity as trusting anyone else to protect you is blatantly evident at present time (bail out – investors losses – taxpayer abuse) to be very dangerous.

    I always feel sorry for the naïve who loose money at no fault of there own except trusting a broker or an employer. But the fact is they only have one decision left to them. Hold what you have or sell and take the left over’s to the bank. This is not advice it is a fact.

    Lets move on to Bill Moyers and Lue Dobbs and me. None of the three of us is perfect and I personally try not to be. Too much pressure and stress.

    What I do try to do is be fair if I can keep my ego out of it. Bill and I have no personal relationship but I have read a lot of his books the most enjoyable was “A World of Ideas I & II” but even though I experienced disappointment over the years in the inevitable disagreements he is in my mind fair.

    Lou Dobbs seems to be doing his best to get the middle class reinstated in our country and for this I am very grateful. He like Bill has never responded to any letters written, emails sent, or entries to weblogs. But as long as he sees the wisdom of having a large middle class for the stability of our country I will help him if I can.

    What I feel is needed is fairness in actions and doctrinal so I am trying not to be the following:


    Democrat or Republican
    Conservative or Liberal
    Ignorant or Educated

    I do enjoy being called a Citizen of the United States.

    I have been called by friends a libertarian and eccentric and accept both as fair. I attempt to write commentary in a fair responsible way and keep my predacious to myself and correct my faults as best I can.

    This means when Bill or Lue or George Soros or Warren Buffett or any of the authors of the books I read… if what is said rings true and a rational man could at least consider it… I take it as worth my consideration and if it helps me to understand the present day or situation I use it as best I can.

    Wisdom comes from acceptance of many things but not form stubbornness and combativeness and most of all from not listening.

    I like you am glad to see investigative reports by anyone in the News Media as I believe strongly it is their job to help keep us free.

    First, we the people must vote good people into office, make sure they remember who they work for, then retire them when they forget.

    Second, the News Media should report the things we the people need to know and can not find out and keep these things in the public eye until they are corrected.

    Yes, yes this is a lot of work… but we the people have been out to lunch and at present date we have neither a democracy or a republic. The majority is not being listened to and the minority is not being protected. The Republic is flat on its back and may not recover. So that wasn’t quite what that form of government promised us would happen either is it.

    We the American people have the frame work for a government that can function well and take care of its people so there is no need to run scared into the streets. There is no reason or need for panic. Fear can be a tool as can anger. We need deliberate action by good men and women. We do not have those men and women in our Government at present time so I am despondent as to our future unless one thing happens.

    The voter fires the incumbents and hires those who know who we the people are… so I guess I am saying I am depending on the voters to be the good people we need in our time of abject failure.

    If I have said anything that may have offended you it was not meant to. I find it difficult to speak of problems and the suffering of our people without saying offensive things about those who should pay some price or recompense for hurting so many people.

    If I may inject one opinion it would be, I think George Soros could help us and I hope our newly elected officials call on him.


    A comment for Sunday: "One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh…The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.” (Ecclesiastes 1:1,9,10).

    But Grady Lee Howard has stated that “no one cares about your irrelevant and inapplicable quotes from the long dead, from very different times.”

    Well, here’s a more modern one from Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1982) that suggests otherwise: “Let us remind ourselves that the Scriptures, while they speak to us eternal truth, are always relevant. Any impression that is ever given that the Scriptures are not relevant is false to the Scriptures. They are timeless, and they are ageless, and for that reason, they are always contemporary. The Scriptures deal with local history, immediate history at particular times, but they deal with all history…”
    If anyone does care, or is interested, you can hear what Lloyd-Jones said in its entirety on Faith and Knowledge at this website:
    http://www.oneplace.com/ministries/living_grace/archives.asp?bcd=2008-10-5

    When Bill Moyers set up the question: 10/12/08

    Market Fundamentalism and the Madness of Crowds

    And quoted:

    MEMOIRS OF EXTRAORDINARY POPULAR DELUSIONS AND THE MADNESS OF CROWDS, 19th century historian Charles Mackay

    "We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object, and go mad in its pursuit; that millions of people become simultaneously impressed with one delusion, and run after it,

    till their attention is caught by some new folly more captivating than the first.”

    Money, in work is most often pursued for the security of the family and home. Neither of these should be put at risk. Money made as the result of a carrier, or the result of craftsmanship, should be placed in an insured Bank and used for the health and welfare of the family including education.

    Now comes the problem: Surplus money seems to go for pleasure or investment and if one is not careful these can become the same.

    Money has most often been that which is pursued in a state of euphoria in Up Markets and has often been a cause of the delusion of multitudes in Down Markets.

    Who can resist talking about the stocks that are going up and making so many people rich… this then infects others to join in on what seems to be easy money. Then comes the top and denial sets in and greed seems to take control.

    The decision is to hold for the long term hoping the price will come back up or as the old investors have learned, “your first loss is your best loss”, and you sell and take your profits to the bank.


    If you are not willing to sell, you become part of the crowd (I think WS prefers the word crowd to mob but at the bottom it will look more like a
    mob). You are now at the point of horror as you watch your investments (money) go down and down and everyone is disillusioned and angry.

    The amount of buying in an up market is controlled by greed and so the amount of selling in a down market is controlled by fear. Fear starts out almost unnoticed and builds up to a point of panic. Panic will cause an irrational sell off of major proportions.

    That is now happening in our Markets. I have said a Free Market will not stand without regulations to make it transparent. We have no transparency in our Financial and Stock Markets.

    We are left with the problem of Government Bail out of the unregulated free market in free fall but the Government Bail Out is not equitable and Fear will continue to rule the day.

    I say it is not equitable because it is being paid for by the taxpayer and those who caused it have left the “Stock market floor” and the “Bank conference rooms” with the profits and the taxpayer is left holding the bag.

    What will we do about it? I am not sure that any action will help. The Government should do one of two things… either get out of it and let the Market equalize itself and let the bad business fail, or the Government should find equality between the rich (who stole the profits by devious investments – this needs to be said for it is a fact) and the taxpayer with both paying according to their ability.

    The more fair a solutions seems, to the majority, the better the chance for it to work and create confidence.

    Let me make a qualification: I have no power and I am one observer watching a Market turn into a nightmare for the majority of investors. Since I have no power I do not have a right to make easy statements about what others have done or what I would do, that would cause people further grief and knowing I will not be called on or be held accountable.


    Also not having power I hope my attacks on the Government are fair, as I a citizen have the right to criticize the actions of Government Officials.

    “Sober nations have all at once become desperate gamblers, and risked almost their existence upon the turn of a piece of paper…

    Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one."

    1. One by one you the American citizen must decide to sell or hold.

    2. You must decide to vote out the incumbent who gave you an unworkable free market and a Government Bail Out that 90% of the taxpayers were against or keep the same people in Congress that protect the very wealthy in this country.

    I suggest that the first decision will be easier to make as thus far the people have seldom if ever voted out an incumbent. (So what is their incentive to listen to you and protect your home and family?)

    When I started this paper my purpose was to offer you a very good book on the Stock Market that was triggered by “Madness of Crowds” found in the title question.

    Here it is:

    Reminiscences of a Stock Operator by Edwin Lefevre

    Always remember the Stock Market is about psychology and the solution to our mess is about psychology, specifically confidence and the truth being told about the actions taken. The first is impossible without the second.

    Let us hope the people will vote into office a new generation that knows what the truth is and who they serve. If you wonder why I added this statement it is for this reason: People are more often libel to act for their own good even if it hurts others and those on Wall Street and in the Banks are in great numbers and have done just this.

    But the responsibility for what has happened lies squarely with the Federal Government for it is they who removed the “regulations and referees” from the Financial Industry.

    Money is not evil; it is a tool to be used to make peoples lives better. The Federal Government allowed a few to use the tool for selfish purposes and it is the Federal Government who is at fault.

    I owe it to you my reader to tell you that I closed my brokerage account and put my money in 3 FDIC insured Banks. I plan to leave it there until this Market reaches its bottom and I can tell from the patience of time that it and the economy are regaining healthiness.

    Bill,

    The question I've not seen asked in the press is whether, or not, we are dealing with organized crime on a global scale with regards to the worldwide financial crises.

    I'd like to see a segment of your show devoted to this question. Are you willing to take up this request?

    Thanks!

    Maslow would say that our problem is not to create a better system, but to create better people. Eupsychian Assumption Number One: Assume everyone is to be trusted-->Assume the "market" is to be trusted!

    I do not pretend to know what has resulted in this financial crisis. However, if deregulation and repeal of usury laws was a large contributing factor, then I feel horribly deceived. I thought that the 1920's had taught us that pure capitalism had dire consequences for a large percentage of people and that "controlled capitalism" was required to keep balance.

    Who was it that said, "those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"?

    Let's all pray that our leaders are suddenly granted wisdom beyond their current capabilities.

    Wouldn´t it be fruitful if Soros and Paulson discuss these things face-to-face. Soros hit the nail on the head when he said that Marxism and Capitalism was flawed when the rulers have their own interests at heart and not the people.

    Some genuinely good ideas with real currency (given our predicament). Very worth our consideration:

    Charles Eisenstein’s essay Money and the Crisis of Civilization.

    http://www.realitysandwich.com/money_and_crisis_civilization

    As a wonderful compliment to Money and the Crisis of Civilization please see The Original Religion

    http://windmountain.wordpress.com/2008/04/01/the-original-religion-by-charles-eisenstein/

    "When President Bush took office, he inherited President Clinton's surpluses — four years in a row, budget surpluses, on a trajectory of $5.6 trillion in surplus. And with his(Bush’s) reckless economic policies within two years, he (Bush)had turned that around ... and now eight years later the foundation of that fiscal irresponsibility, combined with an anything-goes economic policy, has taken us to where we are today. They claim to be free-market advocates when it's really an anything-goes mentality, no regulation, no supervision, no discipline.”

    Nancy Pelosi made that statement during the first house debate on the 700 Billion plus bail out for Henry Paulson’s friends.


    “Electing Republican John McCain for President would be like asking the iceberg to rescue the Titanic!”
    Hillary Clinton


    Posted by: Grady Lee Howard - Our only hope is to quit playing their game. Tell me how that will be accomplished.

    ooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

    See my prior post to jan

    '...IT'S NOT THAT SIMPLE TO DO A 180'

    Our whole world is built around a defective model Grady. The only way it works is to keep expanding the model infinitely.

    Pop control would be a step in the right direction. But again, how should it be done?

    In China a couple must register each pregnancy...would Americans go for that?

    I posted about population control to another group and one responder commented "if eating babies is right I want to be wrong."

    Well, I have no answer as to how to go about pop control, but I can see we have too many people in our world for the limited resources that are available.

    If the world was a perfect entity, no, the gov should not dictate pop control...but we are far from perfect.

    Our future existence on this planet will demand some form of pop control, but I think nature will take care of that problem in the not so distant future.

    http://dieoff.org/

    And in the big picture, we can't fix the problem, we can only postpone the inevitable. But buying a little more time would make things much more livable in the not so distant future than the current path we are headed in.

    The world is in a death spiral and politicians as well as industry are pretending this problem does not exist. We can only blame ourselves, for it is just how we have built our world over the years....too many people, living outside of natures intended balance and not an infinite supply of energy to fuel all our demands.

    It would be one thing if we all reverted back to rural living, burning trees for fuel and housing and living within our comfortable means allotted to us by nature, as our ancestors did back in the day. But 7 billion people can't burn the trees!

    The public just won't not go for pop control...too UN-American...goes against our religious upbringings...too controversial and all of the rest. I can hear the cries now...Communist!...Atheist!...Baby Killer....Hitler....Impeach the President!!!!

    I think nature will help us humans out with that hard decision - for nature does not discriminate nor find the truth too controversial or provocative or opinionated to be true. And in the end, nature will settle the dispute of population control with even handed justice by removing excess population just as it does with all its species, ever reminding us all that nature does not bow to man...it is always man that bows to nature.



    Posted by: Grady Lee Howard - Our only hope is to quit playing their game. Tell me how that will be accomplished.

    ooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

    See my prior post to jan

    '...IT'S NOT THAT SIMPLE TO DO A 180'

    Our whole world is built around a defective model Grady. The only way it works is to keep expanding the model infinitely.

    Pop control would be a step in the right direction. But again, how should it be done?

    In China a couple must register each pregnancy...would Americans go for that?

    I posted about population control to another group and one responder commented "if eating babies is right I want to be wrong."

    Well, I have no answer as to how to go about pop control, but I can see we have too many people in our world for the limited resources that are available.

    If the world was a perfect entity, no, the gov should not dictate pop control...but we are far from perfect.

    Our future existence on this planet will demand some form of pop control, but I think nature will take care of that problem in the not so distant future.

    http://dieoff.org/

    And in the big picture, we can't fix the problem, we can only postpone the inevitable. But buying a little more time would make things much more livable in the not so distant future than the current path we are headed in.

    The world is in a death spiral and politicians as well as industry are pretending this problem does not exist. We can only blame ourselves, for it is just how we have built our world over the years....too many people, living outside of natures intended balance and not an infinite supply of energy to fuel all our demands.

    It would be one thing if we all reverted back to rural living, burning trees for fuel and housing and living within our comfortable means allotted to us by nature, as our ancestors did back in the day. But 7 billion people can't burn the trees!

    The public just won't not go for pop control...too UN-American...goes against our religious upbringings...too controversial and all of the rest. I can hear the cries now...Communist!...Atheist!...Baby Killer....Hitler....Impeach the President!!!!

    I think nature will help us humans out with that hard decision - for nature does not discriminate nor find the truth too controversial or provocative or opinionated to be true. And in the end, nature will settle the dispute of population control with even handed justice by removing excess population just as it does with all its species, ever reminding us all that nature does not bow to man...it is always man that bows to nature.



    Posted by: Grady Lee Howard - Pragmatic: How many Soros worshippers can dance on the point of a needle? Our perverted success ethic bubble has now burst, and Bill Moyers fan dance is over. (David Brooks is a smart guy and a clever writer. I don't label him conservative anymore, just moderately Pragmatic. Bill Moyers needs to shake off his celebrity worship. Let Hinajosa, Siceloff, Karr, Winship or even Naomi Klein share the Journal mike.)

    oooooooooooooooooo

    This is true. People have a tendency to idolize and worship the rich as well as the powerful...if I could only be so rich type of thinking...they are my gods.

    Hi Anonymous9,

    Holy Shite, aren’t your fingers tired. I’ve read, understood and agree with most of your post “Market Fundamentalism and the Madness of Crowds 10/11/08.” I found it to be factual and insightful.

    Beside myself, you’re the only person that I know who supports both Moyers and Dobbs. Liberals, which I am proud to be one, think I’m nuts when I tell them I watch Dobbs all the time. Now in no way do I support his racism, but I believe if he were to direct more his anger at the Mexican government and less at the immigrants then more Liberals would listen to what he had to say. His financial criticism of the Bush admin and his investigative financial reports are by far the best.

    Anyway, thanks for the post and please post more thoughts and facts.

    Curtass: I'm serious, too much money in one place smells like a rhino fart, and this sawed-off Hungarian is playing Bill for a sucker.

    Ditto, Gladdie...

    This is for the post by Grady Lee Howard,
    "The embodiment of evil"? Come on. Do we really have to address those with whom we disagree politically in such absolute terms? I can't stand Dick Cheney, but I don't think he's evil. Please. You don't have to agree with Soros, but at least have the intellectual integrity to make an actual point rather than a sensational polemic.

    We see things now as in a mirror dimly, but soon face to face. I hope to meet you in person, Tim. I don't trust this make believe place. Sweet dreams, and the nutritious ones come true.
    beretco.op@gmail.com

    Hi Michael Lewisham,

    When my son was a baby, he would cry when he was hungry, sleepy or wet. So, I'll give you a snack or let you nap on my couch, but if you need a change, then I suggest you vote for “that one.”

    If I hated you because you hated me, and while we were arguing on an Internets forum, a conman pulled the rug out from underneath you which in turn knocked over me, should I blame you, gravity or the conman? Hint: the last option is the correct answer. Just to let you know, twenty years ago, I didn't hate you because you didn’t hate me. While a conman has been teaching you to hate me, you have been teaching me to hate you. With the gravity of this situation, how can our perpetual motions exist?


    “To thine own self be true.” ~ Willy Shakaspeare
    “There's a neo-con drone born every minute.” ~ P.T. Rove

    Well, it's late, and I've got to go bed now,Grady. But I leave these things for your consideration. Can you love them? Is it your hope to do them good? Or are you filled with rage, and hate, and fear?
    Think of Jesus Christ's prayer for His own murderers as He hung dying on the cross:"Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."
    Good night, and may God bless you.

    Let Sumatra Persimmon do a story, Bill. She's ready, tired of waiting.

    Pragmatic: How many Soros worshippers can dance on the point of a needle? Our perverted success ethic bubble has now burst, and Bill Moyers fan dance is over. (David Brooks is a smart guy and a clever writer. I don't label him conservative anymore, just moderately Pragmatic. Bill Moyers needs to shake off his celebrity worship. Let Hinajosa, Siceloff, Karr, Winship or even Naomi Klein share the Journal mike.)

    Yep, Mr. Collins, $oro$ is an embodiment of evil, and Bill admires his Halloween costume. Why do you think all these prissy vampire shows are popping up on TV? It makes our predatory employments seem normal. Soylent green is people!

    Well, Grady, How about "the love of money is the root of all evil"? How's that for Biblical economics?

    Michael Lewisham berated Bill Moyers. Bill Moyers is one of the most brilliant journalists/intellectuals of our time. He is an arbiter of democracy-- caring for it by informing the public. He is to liberals who David Brooks is to conservatives. While the public deserves to hold Bill Moyers and David Brooks accountable for their journalism, we must more readily realize they are preserving what we hold dear--democracy. I am indebted for their service.

    Regarding the financial crisis, please raise my taxes. Please also pass a balanced-budget amendment. I am personally willing to pay more taxes so that my child is not oppressed by insurmountable debt. I am willing to work longer hours, retire later and pay more in taxes to guarantee a better future than we (Gen X) have been given. My generation (Gen X) is willing to do the same if called upon to do so. In fact, why have we not been called upon to do so?

    Tim Collins: Thanks for the Bible quotes. Now I can preach economics.
    I'm not so dupid as to interpret your effete ridicule of my candor as praise. The most important thing I'm saying is that BofA and Wells Fargo are as hollow as political promises and losing internal pressure fast. MS is burning like the Hindenburg. 700 (or 850) billion is only a subprime down payment on a global house of pain.

    The S formula:

    1. Rename common terms to negate/invalidate them, and confuse the public.

    2. Demonize the free market system, instead of the criminals (can't demonize self).

    3. Present chaos as opportunity, but with urgency. [New order out of chaos.]

    4. Offer solution: Fascist/Communist nationalization of banks, more national taxation to bail out the bail out, taxation w/out representation for a unscientific Nobel Prize gifted fraud (global carbon tax) , and destruction of all ownership rights for anything (“wealth destruction”).

    5. Get a (formerly freedom loving) journalist enlisted to act as the Judas Goat for all the remaining Constitutionalists, who have not yet been hypnotized.

    Haven't we seen this occur, many times in history, before?... Didn't it always lead down the same road; to genocide? - [“...we could actually destroy our civilization.”]

    How sadly ironic that it is people like them (with their backgrounds) who help bring this poison to fruition. Better stop contemplating navels and wake up - now.

    This Bill Moyers guy - I just heard him for the first time today. What a huge suck - who makes his whole living from sucking up to powerful people. What a sad existence

    I've spoken with several people about this economical crisis and all of them seem to blame it in one way or another on greed. Some blame the greedy banks for lobbying the greedy Congresspersons while others blame the greedy consumers for living far above their means. All of this may be true, except I believe with all my heart, Congress should be passing laws which protect a consumer from making poor expensive decisions as well as protecting them from the likes of a predatory lender (Just to let you know, I’m not a victim of predatory lending).

    With everything that has happened in the pass 25 years—from the deregulation of the Savings and loans in the ‘80s which led to Black Monday; to the passing of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act which repealed the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933; to the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000 better known as the Enron Loophole; to the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 which will make DMI a household acronym—the greed of both the banks and our own U.S. Congress (not just Republicans) has left the American people holding the short end of the stick.

    If I were to look at only the financial deregulation laws of the past decade, then yes I could see that greed was the driving force, but I keep thinking about everything else that has happen. What about the Patriot Act, torture, domestic spying? Were they driven by greed? I say no. To me, these are laws and methods used for monitoring and controlling, and they have nothing to do with greed (unless you see them as part of globalization). I know it sounds a little/lot Eric Blairian, but if millions of Americans are in debt, could this economical crisis also be a method of controlling?


    “It's a good thing we didn't step in it!" ~ Cheech and Chong

    In the current financial crisis governments appear lost and bereft of ideas to stabilize the chaotic situation.

    I would like to share with you some insights into this dilemma from a man of exceptional wisdom and compassion. You will notice from the dates of these excerpts that this 'time of reckoning' has long been expected. The good news is that there are very practical solutions available to us -- when we are ready to listen."

    As the stock markets teeter uncontrollably under the twin onslaught of greed and fear, the men of money now seek to bolster their power by combining the major markets into one. This, they assume, will strengthen all. In our view, this will but hasten the total collapse of these gambling casinos of the world. Now, as one, the bourses will react to the winds, blowing now hot, now cold, which fan the fever of the speculators and drive them to the edge. The buffers of dispersion are being abandoned and naught, then, can halt the spiralling fall. When that happens, men will see the folly of this tawdry enterprise and turn to face reality for the first time.(Excerpted from Share International magazine, June 2000)

    So interconnected is the present world economy, so various and so widespread the investment in each others industry and financial structures, that soon these shaky structures will themselves collapse, leaving the world ready for the new. It is to encourage the acceptance of a new approach that Maitreya will work, exhorting the nations to accept that sharing alone will solve their problems, that without sharing and justice, peace will elude them always.

    No longer must the exploitation of millions be the source of corporate wealth, and be acceptable as the norm. When Maitreya speaks, he will draw attention to these major ills of present society and sound the call for change. The collapse of the stock markets will awaken men to the disease of speculation which is destroying the very fibre of men’s lives.

    Thus shall Maitreya become a central figure in the period immediately ahead. Thus will men find a leader of thought, a spokesman for the oppressed, and thus will men awaken to the new light which Maitreya’s teaching brings --- the light of wisdom and truth.

    The downward-spiralling stock markets will signal the end of an era of rampant greed and a new realism will replace the present chaos. Soon the call will ring out: Share and save the world! Justice alone will bring us peace! Men everywhere are brothers! (Excerpted from Share International magazine, Sept 1998)

    We are nearing a time of major change in the world: before long, the transformation of all structures will begin, commencing with the dissolution of the stock markets as they now function. This will release the pressures now being imposed on governments by currency speculation, and allow a fair and equitable trading system to be developed. Short term measures must recognize the special and urgent need of poorer nations for succour. In particular, the problems of hunger and disease must be addressed without delay. New methods of distribution of resources, based on sharing and need, will supplant the present chaotic modes which so divide the world. The blind following of market forces, whose myopic rule causes such misery today, will give way to an enlightened and just consideration for the needs of all. (Excerpted from Share International magazine: Jul/Aug 1995) www.share-international.org

    Capitalism is a cancerous system, and I am glad to see it's free wheeling ways ended. It would consume the earth from right under your feet if it could sell it to your neighbor for money. Perpetual growth is unsustainable, so we will have to cope with our new limits or we will tear ourselves asunder over the scraps. Still, it is unwise to bet against the U.S. economy especially with the onset of the green boom that is only growing closer in the face of our mounting climate crisis.

    Dave

    P.S. vote for regulation

    Really, Grady?
    No doubt people will be quoting your wisdom in a hundred years. That's quite a statement you made: "trying to revive a corspe is perverse, and leads to fatal consequences." One can easily see that you've got your finger on the pulse of the problem. If only we all just listened to you.

    All the selfish crybabies below: You don't belong on Moyers, just ring up (christianofascist) Dave Ramsey. He's more your speed. Sandy better take her chips over to the S&M game. And I couldn't believe the old fart who listed all his books about trading stock, as if someone's going to read that crap after all bets are off. Maybe scholars or archeologists in the future will. The market is never coming back and neither is American empire.
    Trying to revive a corpse is perverse and leads to fatal consequences. Use your ingenuity and imaginations to make something new and better.

    I have used the language of socialism to critique capitalism only because I lacked the common lexicon to communicate. Big systems are all failures when it comes to human welfare. The sadistic cruelty of fascism remains a threat, but capitalism and socialism as conceived in the 20th Century are as dead as dinosaur fossils.

    We can see the anonymous interaction on the Internet will not solve our problems. We are dependent upon face to face interaction as a species. No one cares about your house or investments when they don't know you. There are mostly lies, misrepresentations and pure ideological propaganda on this blog, assertions not information.
    If you can't relate a real story or suggest a practical solution your posts are worthless. No one cares about your irrelevant and inapplicable quotes from the long dead, from very different times.

    My story is that I work for one of the biggest banks, and I learned this week that all the big banks and insurance companies have been robbed by outlaws from the wealthy class. Our only hope is to quit playing their game. Tell me how that will be accomplished.

    And now to Celestial,

    Children, you worry for you children??? Well you had better -- they are your responsiblity!
    Futher, children, like the disabled are LAST in the political pecking order. Obama will have you thinking that the sound minded-able bodied in America are in need a "aid" waaaay before those with little to NO VOICE.

    You can save the flowery words, the fact of the matter is that THOSE THAT WONT ARE GOING TO GET A FREE RIDE WHILE THOSE THAT CANT WILL JUST GET EMPTY ELECTION TIME PROMISES.

    Now if ACORN could register kids, then at least they'd get a sucker and a ballot, but little else.

    In the current financial crisis governments appear lost and bereft of ideas to stabilize the chaotic situation.

    As the stock markets teeter uncontrollably under the twin onslaught of greed and fear, the men of money now seek to bolster their power by combining the major markets into one. This, they assume, will strengthen all. In our view, this will but hasten the total collapse of these gambling casinos of the world. Now, as one, the bourses will react to the winds, blowing now hot, now cold, which fan the fever of the speculators and drive them to the edge. The buffers of dispersion are being abandoned and naught, then, can halt the spiralling fall. When that happens, men will see the folly of this tawdry enterprise and turn to face reality for the first time .(Excerpted from Share International magazine, June 2000)

    So interconnected is the present world economy, so various and so widespread the investment in each others industry and financial structures, that soon these shaky structures will themselves collapse, leaving the world ready for the new. It is to encourage the acceptance of a new approach that Maitreya will work, exhorting the nations to accept that sharing alone will solve their problems, that without sharing and justice, peace will elude them always.

    No longer must the exploitation of millions be the source of corporate wealth, and be acceptable as the norm. When Maitreya speaks, he will draw attention to these major ills of present society and sound the call for change. The collapse of the stock markets will awaken men to the disease of speculation which
    is destroying the very fibre of men’s lives.

    Thus shall Maitreya become a central figure in the period immediately ahead. Thus will men find a leader of thought, a spokesman for the oppressed, and thus will men awaken to the new light which Maitreya’s teaching brings --- the light of wisdom and truth.

    The downward-spiralling stock markets will signal the end of an era of rampant greed and a new realism will replace the present chaos. Soon the call will ring out: Share and save the world! Justice alone will bring us peace! Men everywhere are brothers! (Excerpted from Share International magazine, Sept 1998)

    We are nearing a time of major change in the world: before long, the transformation of all structures will begin, commencing with the dissolution of the stock markets as they now function. This will release the pressures now being imposed on governments by currency speculation, and allow a fair and equitable trading system to be developed. Short term measures must recognize the special and urgent need of poorer nations for succour. In particular, the problems of hunger and disease must be addressed without delay. New methods of distribution of resources, based on sharing and need, will supplant the present chaotic modes which so divide the world. The blind following of market forces, whose myopic rule causes such misery today, will give way to an enlightened and just consideration for the needs of all. (Excerpts from Share International magazine: Jul/Aug 1995) www.share-international.org

    Stockmonger's arrogance just stinks -- and I as many have had just about enough of it.

    I am a conservative - political and financial. Because I did not tap equity in my home for frills, nor did I invest in pie in the sky stocks. I am in a position to buy into the housing market and like the idea of a tangible investment like property, a rental, vacation home etc.

    But, funny, where is our government asking me for my help in return for a good investment?

    And, Bubble my A--, I was a stock broker - by accident- before during and only shortly after the internet bubble period - it was not only a consequence of an emerging industry of unimaginable growth potential but also of a time when EVERYONE wanted a piece of the action.

    Property values are still too high, how can anyone afford a home it they could not before this???

    I want a value, not "bragging" rights.

    The shame of it is that so many people were convinced that they need property to have value in their lives and futures for their childrens lives. If perhaps we had not bought our home when we did and suffered to keep it as we have. Our daughters would not have seen college, nor could we have attained credit to furnish them clothes and activity money to buy unattainable needs. I pray we get people into office that are mentors not people expecting that all people have wisdom or have been brought up well. Unfortunately many of us are not as educated as some of your writers are here today. I know it is against the law not to know the law, but as many like myself, we have had to struggle to understand the laws. You must have money to know how to budget, you then must have something to budget for and with. It is circular at best and with guidance from great mentors we can all have an opportunity to use our great thought processes to understand how to relatively use it wisely.....

    The housing bubble led to the realization of a credit bubble. The masses piled into equities and caused mass inflation. Then the masses piled out and caused mass deflation. Sorry you were the unsophisticated market masses Sandy. This is a time where bubble spotter's accounts are sitting at all time highs.

    Soros hates Nazism,,, financial Nazisim is Soros's game and Obama supplies the playing board.

    Obama was 30 something when he took up with the terrorist Ayers to get MONEY from him, either he knew about Ayers or he NOT CARE WHERE HE GETS HIS CONTRIBUTIONS, the result is the same.

    The Keating 5 consisted of 4, Four, IV, IIII, Democrats and one Republican.

    Funny, cause Obama would have you think McCain is 4 more years of BUSH -- OBAMA IS 4 MORE YEARS OF BUSH - only his Rove Chenney Haliburton and Enron have different names - same thing.

    SHUT UP GEORGE- i am really SICK of the famously wealthy making $$$ off me and you. The "market" did this, you are a POACHER! Warren Buffet, bought a "special" PREFERRED stock in Goldman Sachs - not the JUNK sold to you and me.

    That SOROS would BLAME the MARKETS for this mess is ABSURD.

    $$$ does not disappear, to goes SOMEHWERE, to the likes of SOROS who capitalize of me and you.

    SOROS was in BED with the crack pots in congress that like being stroked by the famous and wealthy - and we are the suckers that are made to PAY - sucker underwriters, so to speak.

    Soros will be there to buy this mess, as a "FAVOR" to OBAMA, for cents on the $$, and then he will SELL IT BACK the taxpayers for a HUGE profit -- HUGE meaning - he will MAKE A MINT off you and me.

    SOROS will be sold as a GIVER!!!

    Soros, is a poacher AT BEST!

    Soros and Obama refuse to acknowledge and reward the responsible taxpayers like you and me, but WE WILL NOT BE OFFERED THE STEAL OF DEAL THAT THE LIKES OF SOROS WILL.

    PBS is slumming to give this poacher legitimacy.

    Rich warring on the poor = Financial crisis these people don’t want anyone to retire, or have job, financial security. Just work yourself to death for their benefit!

    This George Soros interview was extremely helpful: clear, reflective, insightful. Thanks to him, Bill Moyers, and PBS.

    Not a mention of derivatives. Not a mention of The Glass-Steagall Act.

    Soros is an agent of the Anglo-Dutch Liberal system of empire and usury. He is actively propagandizing against the increasingly popular only solutions to this mess. He uses "we" as if he were an American citizen; he is not. He is a subject of the crowned head of another nation. WE have a Constitution which rests upon the General Welfare of the citizens.

    His system is finished. WE are going to be tricked into paying good money for the poker chips of bankrupt casinos? WE are going to be legislated into buying stock in the bankrupt casinos ("investment" houses)? Give me a break.

    1. Immediately protect homeowners with a firewall -- it's called the Homeowners and Bank Protection Act of 2007.

    2. Put the whole mess into bankruptcy reorganization -- people before paper and digital fantasies. Not one dime more into trying to bail out the sinking Titanic. Preserve the necessary banking functions upon which society depends and put the casino chips aside to be sorted out later.

    3. Get the leading powers, U.S.A., Russia, China together and working on a fixed-rate monetary exchange rate system so we can have long term investment again, for necessary infrastructure and social services worldwide among cooperating sovereign nations.

    4. Establish a two-tier interest rate. 1-2% government credit issued through banks state and federal for long-term needed capital investment in science and infrastructure. 4% or higher for less necessary matters.

    Soros and his financier fraternity are well aware of the sensible proposals on the table (but not mentioned by the cartel media) and are actively muddying the waters to try to prevent a return to American System political economy -- the very system (forget "capitalism" and "socialism") which allowed great growth and development after the winning the war of Independence from the Empire of the British East India Company -- the very system which again nutured allowed great growth and development after preserving the Union under Abe Lincoln. That system was being taken up by Japan, Germany, Russia and China... massive projects of continental development which threatened the empire which relied on its control of the seas and trade.

    They drum up wars when they are cornered. They are not concerned with the general welfare or the common good. They are beasts. And, being no better than simply that, they would herd and cull and slaughter us. Because they think they are entitled.

    A pox on them. Damn them to hell. Now we must up on our legs and fight like the human beings we are.

    As “the Bank of England announced its plan to nationalize... the British banking system”! The “Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said Friday that the Bush administration will move ahead with a plan to buy stock in financial institutions”
    I disagree with Soros that “This current economic disaster is self-generated”!
    The disaster was generated by “the dysfunctional government, Senate and Congress”!
    During 2007, pertaining to the “ most pressing issues facing the nation”, on CBS
    60 Minutes, The Comptroller general... stated, “the biggest ECONOMIC PERIL facing the nation is being ignored and the most serious threat to the United States is not someone hiding in a cave in Afghanistan or Pakistan but our own fiscal irresponsibility"! The fact is, as The Controller general stated, “a tsunami of spending that could swamp our ship of state”! He was correct “it did swamp our ship...”!
    The fact is, there was a “breach of duty, intent, knowledge, recklessness” to inflict harm.The faith in the “dysfunctional government, the free market economy and the Constitution, as a whole are gone! “The corruption has been ramped”!
    Soros states, “The world is collapsing... “ it is not an understatement.
    The elected official in Congress and Senate “sit idle and deregulate just about everything for self serving, enrichment and corruption. Did nothing to the diminution, subversion. destruction of the Economy, the War, the Financial system, the Health care, the Social Security etc...!
    The justice system branch of government is not any better - they turned blind eye too!
    Operating under Socialism – to nationalize - centralize the financial system
    for special interest groups and denying the people to “participate in power “ is doom to
    fail!

    I am glad Mr. Soros was able to visit with you and share his longer and studied views of the country's and the world's financial problems.

    Problem was, he was much too kind. His free application of the economic term "value" was in my view inappropriate; particularly when in reference to real estate--the first domino in a very long line of dominoes which has flat-lined our economy.

    The more appropriate word, I believe, would have been "price;" for the price that was given homes in my state of Florida was often little more than a number pulled out of the thin air, the sales or contract price little better, as appraisals were simply contrived to equal or exceed the growing demand and panic of buyers, all abetted by credit card styled mortgage documents.

    All that mattered here and elsewhere was the 'short' sale and the creation of a mortgage document which in turn was the only thing that mattered to the brokerage houses that were next in line to buy them, ad nauseum, until the overloaded and overheated bicycle theory of economics literally hit the financial wall.

    As we watched the dominoes drop one bank and brokerage house at a time, it also reminds of Mr. Soros's comment on the principal-agent relationship whose interests served only expediency, not their customers nor their clients. Where were those whose jobs were to protect and defend the public's interests from questionable and arguably fraudulent business practices? More importantly, why are those who failed to identify or address the problems when they were minimally manageable still there?

    Like it or not, we will have to return to the sitll growing number of foreclosures across this country and the many flaws in the valuation and transaction of real estate.

    Value has to genuinely relate to price. Price must be a function of worth and integrity. Houses made like slice and bake cookies in a developers oven have skewed not only the system but our trust in it.

    Jo Ann:

    Since you only gave one name you can remain anonymous and if you don't like what is offered, you don't have to respond to it.

    "What choice do I have as I watch my IRA shrink?"

    You can sell any investments you may have in your IRA and put the money into cash and move it to an FDIC Bank.

    "What choice am I going to have when I have no money to retire on?"

    The market is not at the bottom so you should have some savings left. Take that cash and put it in an FDIC Bank and wait until the mess is cleaned up - and it will be in time. Then start over and invest in good stocks.

    If you don't know of any take a look at:
    Johnson and Johnson,
    3M,
    Exxon/Mobile,
    Royal Dutch Shell,
    Proctor and Gamble.
    All these companies are solid and will be around after the depression is over… you ask how do I know that? Because they make stuff we need not stuff we want. You should also do your own investigation and listen always to you gut. It won’t lie and everybody dealing with money will.

    "No social security."

    This is going to depend on you and your friends. If every time you hear your Representative or your two Senators or the President talk about changing or ending or cutting Social Security... you and they should vote against that person every time an election is held. Vote for someone who is for you and Social Security and remembers that you gave them their job.

    And if anyone asks, remind them that we the people paid for SS and the Government stole our money and spent it. The new elected official who represents you should know you expect them to put it back and SS will be solvent.

    Also remind them of the bail out for the rich and let them know they better bail out SS or they won't have a job.

    "We need some kind of revolution brought about by the people. We can't sit back and let our government destroy our way of life."

    You already have the revolution you seek, the founding fathers gave it to you, but it requires that you and your friends care about the common good enough to stick together and Not vote Democrat or Republican but for your own best interest and the common good of our families and communities.

    It is the VOTE given to and implied by the following: the Constitution the Declaration of Independence and the Founding Fathers for the people to rule their lives and you can vote out the incumbent.

    In fact you have a wonderful chance to do just that in this election. If the good men and women of our country truly want a change you can vote the whole congress out in the next two votes/elections and no one will dare threaten to take your "paid for your self" Social Security away.

    If Representatives and Senators get wind of the citizen standing up for them selves they will begin to beg for you to forgive them and give them another chance. Don’t believe them, if their hearts were in the right place, you would not be left holding the bag.

    If you remember to vote for your self and the common good of your community you should see great change. But remember that selfishness will bring back the liars and cheats we now have.

    Be Awake, you can’t leave people in power to themselves.

    I hope I have helped and not hindered you.

    Oops. Still missed a couple of revisions and typos that needed correction. My apologies to blog readers; please just scroll past my earlier 2 posts of this piece.

    For Bill Moyers:
    Right now, the economy is front and centre on everyone’s mind. But whoever ought to have "faith" in the ecomony? In many past shows, you have often bemoaned the mixture of religion and politics. This little editorial commentary connects all these dots: religion, politics, and the economy.

    Somewhere in dim historical memory, there was once a time in North America, and indeed, among Protestant Christians everywhere, when personal debt was viewed very much differently. King Solomon’s proverbial warning that “the borrower is servant to the lender” carried weight, and the Apostle Paul’s injunction of Romans 13:3 was taken literally: “Owe no man anything, but to love one another.” Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the great 19th century Baptist preacher, put it this way: “The Bible never tells us to get out of debt, but not to have any.”

    Debt, then, was looked upon as not only a calamity, but a sin. “Some sell their liberty to gratify their luxury,” warned Christian commentator Matthew Henry in the 18th Century, “Many that are very sensible of the trouble [of debt] think little of the sin of being in debt.” “Avoid debts,” cautioned the 19th Century American Presbyterian William S. Plumer, “they doth eat as a canker.”

    But somehow, somewhere during the last fifty years, all this truth got turned around. Debt now became viewed not as a calamity to be avoided, and a sin requiring repentance, but a ticket to material prosperity. Indeed, both on a individual basis, and a national level, living in debt has become the general norm. But now the drunken party’s over.

    The saddest thing of all is this: if modern Christian leaders had spent more time telling their people what the Bible said, instead of repeating “free market” mantras, and the promises of politicians, perhaps the nation’s economy wouldn’t be in such a terrible mess. Instead of advising Christians on their investments, and telling them how to vote, they should have stuck to the more important job that God gave them: preaching Jesus Christ, and the truths of God’s Word. Spurgeon had that right, too. “Let me be a minister wholly, and not spend my energies upon secondary concerns,” he said, “what have I to do with party politics?” But what a disservice these modern unfaithful “political” pastors have done to their own flocks, and worse, to the cause of Christ’s Gospel in the world!

    Still, even worse than meddling in politics, has been the disgraceful sight of Christian ministers and preachers leaving their pulpits to run for political office. It’s like a soldier deserting his post. Oliver Cromwell, who knew a few things about religion and politics, and soldiering, too, warned against this kind of nonsense back in the 16th Century: “When ministers pretend to a glorious Reformation, and lay the foundations thereof in getting to themselves worldly power, they may know that the Zion promised will not be built with such untempered mortar.”

    Once hundred years later, John Newton, the author of the hymn Amazing Grace, sounded the same warning: “Allow me to say, it excites both my wonder and concern, that a minister...should think it worth his while to appear [as] a political writer, or [to make] proposals of political reform. I can wish...no higher preferment than to be an ambassador of the King of kings…for the Lord has not called me to set nations to right, but to preach the gospel, to proclaim the glory of His name, and to endeavour to win souls. Happy is that servant, whom his Lord, when He cometh, shall find so doing!”

    Too bad modern American preachers didn’t pay heed to these old warnings and stick to their own business. And equally dismaying is the lack of true Christian wisdom and historical memory among many of those who call them Christians. Even so, despite it all, the Bible has once more proven true: “As ye sow, so shall ye reap.”

    I really dislike the name
    calling and mud slinging in
    political elections. I want to know what the candidate is
    going to do for our country
    not how terrible the other
    candidate is. I am not even
    looking at anymore debates!
    It pains me to think people
    believe these statements with-
    out checking them out.

    Corrected version.

    For Bill Moyers:
    Right now, the economy is front and centre on everyone’s mind. But in many shows, you have often bemoaned the mixture of religion and politics. This little editorial commentary connects all these dots: religion, politics, and the economy.

    Somewhere in dim historical memory, there was once a time in North America, and indeed, among Protestant Christians everywhere, when personal debt was viewed very much differently. King Solomon’s proverbial warning that “the borrower is servant to the lender” carried weight, and the Apostle Paul’s injunction of Romans 13:3 was taken literally: “Owe no man anything, but to love on another.” Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the great 19th century Baptist preacher, put it this way: “The Bible never tells us to get out of debt, but not to have any.”

    Debt, then, was looked upon as not only a calamity, but a sin. “Some sell their liberty to gratify their luxury,” warned Christian commentator Matthew Henry in the 18th Century, “Many that are very sensible of the trouble [of debt] think little of the sin of being in debt.” “Avoid debts,” cautioned the 19th Century American Presbyterian William S. Plumer, “they doth eat as a canker.”

    But somehow, somewhere during the last fifty years, all this truth got turned around. Debt now became viewed not as a calamity to be avoided, and a sin requiring repentance, but a ticket to material prosperity. Indeed, both on a individual basis, and a national level, living in debt has become the general norm. But now the drunken party’s over.

    The saddest thing of all is this: if modern Christian leaders had spent more time telling their people what the Bible said, instead of repeating “free market” mantras, and the promises of politicians, perhaps the nation’s economy wouldn’t be in such a terrible mess. Instead of advising Christians on their investments, and telling them how to vote, they should have stuck to the more important job that God gave them: preaching Jesus Christ, and the truths of God’s Word. Spurgeon had that right, too. “Let me be a minister wholly, and not spend my energies upon secondary concerns,” he said, “what have I to do with party politics?” But what a disservice these modern unfaithful “political” pastors have done to their own flocks, and worse, to the cause of Christ’s Gospel in the world!

    Still, even worse than merely meddling in politics, has been the disgraceful sight of Christian ministers and preachers leaving their pulpits to run for political office. It’s like a soldier deserting his post. Oliver Cromwell, who knew a few things about religion and politics, and soldiering, too, warned against this kind of nonsense back in the 16th Century: “When ministers pretend to a glorious Reformation, and lay the foundations thereof in getting to themselves worldly power, they may know that the Zion promised will not be built with such untempered mortar.”

    Once hundred years later, John Newton, the author of the hymn Amazing Grace, sounded the same warning: “Allow me to say, it excites both my wonder and concern, that a minister...should think it worth his while to appear [as] a political writer, or [to make] proposals of political reform I can wish...no higher preferment than to be an ambassador of the King of kings…for the Lord has not called me to set nations to right, but to preach the gospel, to proclaim the glory of His name, and to endeavour to win souls. Happy is that servant, whom his Lord, when He cometh, shall find so doing!”

    Too bad modern American preachers didn’t pay heed to these old warnings and stick to their own business. And equally dismaying is the lack of true Christian wisdom and historical memory among many of those who call them Christians. Even so, despite it all, the Bible has once more proven true: “As ye sow, so shall ye reap.”

    These are the books I read over the years as I studied the Stock Market.

    If you choose to read them, I hope they will help you.

    Trading For a Living Alexander Elder
    John Wiley & Sons 1993 ISBN 0471592242

    The Disciplined Trader Mark Douglas
    NY Institute of Finance 1990 ISBN 0132157578

    Investment Psychology Explained Martin J. Pring
    John Wiley & Sons 1993 ISBN 0477557218

    It’s When You Sell That Counts Donald L. Cassidy
    Probus Publishing Company 1994 ISBN 1557385947

    Panic Profits John Dennis Brown
    McGraw-Hill 1994 ISBN 0070081891

    How To Make Money on Wall Street Louis Rukeyser
    Dolphin Books 1976 ISBN 0385046521

    Trader Vic Victor Sperandeo
    John Wiley & Sons 1991 ISBN 0471304972
    Trader Vic II Victor Sperandeo
    John Wiley & Sons 1994 ISBN 047153577X

    The Alchemy of Finance George Soros
    John Wiley & Sons 1994 ISBN 0471042064

    Market Wizards Jack D. Schwager
    Harper Business 1993 ISBN 0060973293
    The New Market Wizards Jack D. Schwager
    Harper Business 1994 ISBN 0887305873

    The Midas Touch John Train
    Harper & Row 1987 ISBN 0060915005
    The Money Masters John Train
    Harper & Row 1980 ISBN 006091405X
    The New Money Masters John Train
    Harper & Row 1989 ISBN 006092005X

    The Reckoning
    Taking Hard New Look at a Greenspan Legacy
    Story NY Tims 10/8

    capitalism + jews = misery for America and the world!

    Mr. Soros forgot to mention that Wall Street has created a huge parallel shadow economy that rivals the size and scope of the entire US economy, outside of regulations and the rule of law with the help of those “No government and no regulations Republicans. This huge Wall Street black hole may be as big as 60 Trillion is threatening to destroy us all. People like Alan Greenspan who’s suppose to keep an eye on what’s going on Wall Street seemed to have been asleep on the job. We used to believe people like Milton Freedmen when he glorified nonsense of market economics. While the big bubbles started popping everywhere, Marty Feldstein at Harvard still preaches the virtues of market economics to us ─tells us that it’s really the fault of the government regulators. To rid our country of these corrupt people with vested interests, demagogy, and ideology and free our country again is going to take nothing short of another American revolution!

    Posted by: Peter - I view this current financial debacle as parallel to our horrific abuse of detainees at Guantanamo Bay and are related in this way: the almost "religious" belief in unbridled ungoverned acting on impulses in a spirit of hubris that no wrong can be done if in the name of "freedom". We need to grow up as a society and exercise much much more maturity and humility and restraint.

    *********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********

    Well, no one likes to put a cap on the American dream as they say. Unfortunately greed corrupts humans and the CNBC fantasy of unrestricted free market capitalism has proven it does not work. Now sure it can be propped up with socialism and taxing the poor, but if left on its own, it would crumble in ruins.

    'Honor dies where interest lies.'

    With endless greed there is endless harm that is produced. Just witness our current mess that has engulfed the world from just a few greedy high income executives. Greed is never satisfied by attainment. Once attained the desire for more is just raised to a higher level. Greed is only satisfied by contentment.

    If there was a cap on salaries of $10,000,000 per year. Once the greedy executive reached his or her cap, the need for endless greed is removed. His or her mind is then freed to making things better for his or her company as well as the community.

    Where did I come up with $10,000,000? Just pulled it out of the air. Same way they came up with the $700,000,000,000 bailout number.

    We all have to go outside of our homes sometimes and live in the world we have created. It is in our own interest to make this world sane and safe for all to live in...at least best we can. The greedy CEO's that poison the world for profit seem to forget this fact.

    The business of humanism is 'all our business' if we with to live life at peace. For in the end, your sanity becomes my sanity and my sanity becomes your sanity.

    Don't believe this?

    Let me illustrate how we all are in this together.

    Remember the killings at Virginia Tech?

    57 people shot or killed?

    A millionaires daughter was a student at Virginia Tech. She was living a happy, carefree life as any millionaires child might do. But one day she ran into Seung-Hui Cho. She was subsequently shot, as some other 56 were. She lived, but is now she is paralyzed.

    Seung-Hui Cho's sanity became her sanity...a sanity she lives with for the rest of her life. Seung-Hui Cho's sanity also became the sanity for the other 56 people that shared his thoughts that day...we all share the same breath.


    "Just as a life of virtue yields its own reward, a life of vice yields its own punishment" - Plutarch ~ Priest of the Delphic Oracle

    So, according to Soros, credit has vastly increased for 25 years. No one doubts that. And now, all over the world, billions are being pumped into the markets and banks to increase so-called liquidity. Billions more are being added in bailouts.
    But here's the question that nobody ever seems to ask. What does all this do to the actual value of currency? Even if one escapes with his shirt, so to speak, is that shirt still of any real worth? Or, in addition to a massive global credit contraction, arn't we also seeing tremendous currency re-evaluations?

    Posted by: jan - I don't pretend to know anything about the economy. I just know that I'm sick and tired of what out of control greed and capitalism has done to us.


    *********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********


    We can see we have created a time bomb. Even the highest level brainiac economists can't fix what ails us. Our whole system is based on an unsustainable model that will eventually collapse no matter how much money that is printed up by the Fed. (...they don't even need to print money nowadays, all that needs to be done to create billions is to magnetize a silicon chip!)

    Yes, the economy is very complex and there are so many IF's, AND's and BUT's that play off each other it is really a nightmare.

    Now maybe if our energy supply was stable and affordable and global warming was not an issue, things would be different and we could keep on consuming and expanding as infinitum

    But the facts point to the end of an era as Soros talked about.

    http://www.amazon.com/Peak-Everything-Century-Declines-Publishers/dp/086571598X

    As futurists we try to anticipate future events and the direction the world is headed in and as survivalists we try to prepare for those circumstances.

    Sad thing is...IT'S NOT THAT SIMPLE TO DO A 180...Without compulsive spending and conspicuous consumption funded by unaffordable debt, we would fail as a country.

    You ever hear the saying...'I got the tiger by the tail and can't let go?' That is how it has developed in the US of A.

    Lets say everyone becomes voluntary simplicity and frugal squirrel devotees. We recycle, reuse, repair and just say no to buying more crap. If we stop buying all the stuff that America imports from China - who keeps the billion plus people in China from starving, so they do not go back to old ways of trying to take over the world?

    China and Russia tried to support its people though a sustainable, self sufficient manner when they ere totally RED. Now that they are PINK, they are much more successful at support, So the world exchanged the dread of communist domination for that of the problem of more capitalism and consumption. But as Taoists tell us...fleas come with the dog. America now wishes China and India had stayed backwards. But as long as the crude holds out, they can't go backwards once they got a taste of the American dream.

    Maybe if China was a a balanced self sufficient economy with less mouths to feed and things would not be so bad. Same as the US...self sufficient. But everyone is globally connected nowadays.

    And on a more local level, if the consumer stops consuming even US goods, the US companies go bust, everyone loses their jobs and his or her retirement funds will collapse.

    What about growing a a garden...nothing wrong with that? Lets say everyone starts growing 'victory gardens' in the backyard as food has become unaffordable. So some of the few farmers left in the US go bust cause their food just rots on the shelves unsold. Now there is less food being produced and at even a higher cost to those that can afford it the least.

    What about more taxes? Tax the little guy so DC can pay for their compulsive spending disease. More taxes = less for us to compulsively spend 'trying' to buy happiness = lower earnings for the greedy corporations = raise hell with the DOW = less cap gains tax income for the gov to squander = everyone's retirement funds sink lower and lower = even less compulsive spending since everyone is poorer..."A debt-based society cannot prosper and is doomed to fail..." ~ Ron Paul

    You mention 'what out of control greed and capitalism has done to us.'

    Yes, this is the root problem.

    Thoreau reminds us..."Trade curses everything it touches and even though you trade in 'messages from heaven' when trade attaches itself the whole thing becomes cursed."

    With freedoms come decision making. And when decisions have to be made, mistakes can and will happen. Now wrong, selfish decisions have been made and the whole country and the world must suffer from it.

    Selfishness, egocentric actions and corruption are human qualities that come with ALL form of government. Even the so called selfless communist governments get weighed down with egocentric leaders. If one is selfless such as ants or bees communism's works fine. It is only when selfishness is injected that communism fails miserably.

    The reason the ideal of communism fails is because imperfect humans have to apply the perfect ideals. Same goes with our imperfect democratic elected leaders. But the problem is not so much that we elect imperfect leaders the problem is that we have no overnight committee to change the wrongs that they inevitably do.

    In our future, Americans may find themselves to lean more to a community based life, As the crude dries up the gov may find it hard to help all those in need. Localized groups and communes of sorts may be all we have to turn to.

    I will say for communism to be fair minded and even handed, all workers would periodically exchange jobs (best they could) from top to bottom. That way favoritism and ego would not be such a problem. But who wants to go from the ivory tower to shoveling shit, so lets get real - we are dealing with human egos here. And even if we wish to 'try' and do good, one cannot replace highly skilled workers with the shit shoveler. So no matter how we slice it, there will always be exceptions to the rule.

    Back in the day, (prairie and turn of the century) citizens were more of a self sufficient nature. Most of us have lost that skill of self sufficiency and we have shifted gears to be dependent on gov and a few other such as farmers or oil producers or China to take care of the whole pop of the US. The problem is, it is very hard to go back without causing a lot of pain. (Actually a lot of deaths)

    Hell, the impotent people of modern day and age can't even make pancakes or peanut butter sandwiches and have to buy them ready made in the store...it's really scary.

    Moyers is weak but his audience on this blog is strong and curious. Thank you all for doing the work, for laboring to uncover solutions, sources, truths. I still assert this as the best blog on the Internet. It should be the educational starting point for every voter and activist. (You still have a little something at the corner of your mouth, Allenwrench, that's it, all gone.)

    Market and Life Fundamentals

    I use to own and operate a small town market and see it this way.
    A market is a business built by people to provide needed services to a community with the hope and intent of making a profit in return. Some markets are so successful they grow to be supermarkets and others due to competition, illness, timing, and greed to name only a few come and naturally go. Those less fortunate and struggling ones can be propped up for a while with an infusion of funds, or even a simple change in the way they do business, but to stay in business they must surely be strong enough to stand on their own. Eventually the life of a business no matter how strong or super it appeared or once was, like life itself, ages, weakens, becomes frail, ends up closed, boarded up, and sits empty and dies. The market owner and community morn the loss of their market and wonder what will they do now, but not for very long. You see eventually, again like life itself, the old market is torn down and a new market springs to life and the cycle begins again. Thus is the cyclical nature of a market as well as life, as well as us all.

    =
    MJA

    Can't see the forest for the trees economic philosophy allows intellectuals to muddy the water, but you never see them paddeling the boat.

    Look to our national past times, which even we non-'brains' understand.
    SORTS HAVE RULES, impartial judges, & imposed penalities for breaking rules. Without this structure there would be no baseball, football, tennis,basketball, etc.

    The desire to win, or greed, or what ever it is called, man needs rules to go by, enlightened rules makers,impartial judges for fairness, and executives to enforce rules.

    HEY! This sounds familiar!

    Man MUST HAVE RULES, rather it is the
    10 Commandants, or
    The Constitution, or the NFL.

    The National Democratic Club, or Organization, or Party, whatever, made a ruls that the State Florida had to vote after other 'special states' or the votes would not count in their National CLUS'S Nomination Election--

    NOW that is not FAIR, so we see that just because there is a 'RULE' or NO RULE does not determine if it is fair.

    This goes to the heart of our current crisis--
    SELF-SERVING RULES!

    Our forefathers put their heads & hearts into our Constitution, now we SELECT OUR RULES!

    Billy Bob, Florida

    If a video were needed to illustrate the concept "cronyism" the interview of Soros by Moyers would be perfect. Bill might have as well been complementing and devoting attention to a large sack of $100 bills. George Soros, like T. Boone Pickens and Warren Buffet among others, is merely a lucky sociopath. If his history is examined one can easily see that his selfish and egotistical bad actions far outweigh his charity and constructive behavior.

    When action is to be taken in our sick world the primal impulse is to fundraising. What has been the result of such Soros projects as the Million Mother March for gun control? Soros, like the late Karl Popper, is an a repeat resusitator of corporate capitalism in a world where its shortcomings continue to wreck havoc. His dream of financial elite-dominated world government is exactly what humanity doesn't need, and his stubborness at clinging to an outmoded two party system is even more tragic. He can't seem to transcend the idea that Republicans are market fundamentalists and Democrats are tweakers of the same structural injustices. The observation that human attitudes affect markets (reflexivism) is of little use when the markets serve a only a tiny
    monied minority.

    Soros was a member of the Carlyle Group who has bought large blocks of Halliburton stock. The market is his religion because he can't see beyond profit. His ideas would be passe' without his wealth. Through his deference to Soros, Moyers insinuates that political speech is just another tradeable commodity, not a right or responsibility of the common citizen. The strings attached to Soros' funding of our Inauguration March this January would entangle and tie our interests, and our movement would awake like Gulliver, staked to the ground. Soros' limited imagination reflects badly on Moyers' judgment. Corporate capitalism committed suicide and it is the general responsibility of humanity to derive something new and more workable. That is why Moyers remains a hostage to elite capitalist etiquette after 252 days. Watch and see if Bill doesn't retire to Fantasy Island when the fascist machine installs zombie McCain.

    Thank you for getting Mr Soros on your show. His message is refreshing in this time of fear, knee jerk reactions, glib solutions and seeming low concern for the quality of life of Americans among decision makers in Congress and the White House. Mr Soros conveys a big picture view that was enlightening and his agile humility as a thinker gives him the flexibility to increase his likelihood of long term success far beyond anybody else I've read. He doesn't promise quick fixes and correctly points out that this situation is unprecedented, with many unpredictable elements which can undo even well-intentioned efforts of remediation. It will be a challenge to get anyone in the White House and Congress to be so honest and mentally positioned to be effective. I will read Mr Soros's book and hope to get some bearings on how to personally deal effectively as a part of the the solution, which doesn't mean I just blindly vote "Democrat" or "Republican". His third principle - a sense of public duty and responsibility among all participants - won't be easy to practice personally because it will take time and thought to be informed enough to make good decisions. We shouldn't assume it will be easy for others such as investment advisors and current finance executives who haven't been effective in past practices. If people have a sense of genuine urgency as lucid as Mr Soros's, there's a good chance we'll all come out of this a better country and a better force for global good, including effectively dealing with global warming. Thanks again. The program, including Kathleen Hall Jamieson, was one of your best ever, and that's saying a lot.

    @ Allenwrench | October 10, 2008 7:55 PM

    The way to solve this problem is to let people go bankrupt," Rogers said.

    Then you will hit bottom and then you start over. The people who are sound will take over the assets from the people who aren't sound and we will start over. This is the way the world has worked for a few thousand years. — Allenwrench

    I concur with your premise that eventually the problem will be rectified by market forces irrespective of attempts by irrational actors — in this case the Bush administration — to intervene and annul the inevitable consequence of past action. As if Paulson and his fellow minister believe their “powers” and “tools” could somehow nullify the laws of Newtonian physics if needed. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction for instance. Sure is nice to have superheroes around when a crisis hits!

    Our current crisis is proof-positive that God not only has a great sense of humor but is infinitely merciful. As evidenced by the fact that the charade in Washington is reduced to comic book status during a crisis of crippling magnitude with dire consequences for many, many “ordinary” Americans; and we can all use a little more humor to ease our burden during this painful and terrifying period we have wrought in our ignorance.

    But anyway, back to your comment, Allenwrench, it is easy to see that the irrational actors in the Capitol have enough sense to understand that it is the US government that is bankrupt and for which the consequence of this fiasco spells dissolution. Therefore, we can not blame them for their hysteria. There is an institutional will to life just as there is an individual will to life. And it is indeed terrifying to see the Grim Reaper approaching when your accounts are unsettled and your transgressions unabsolved, even for a government!

    Sorry, my previous post should read:

    @Carolyn, W. Palm Beach, FL | October 11, 2008 7:45 AM

    Seven score and eight years ago. . .A scholarly lawyer from Illinois, distinguished in his profession yet with little executive experience, rises from humble origins. The unlikely nominee of his party, he edged out rivals with far more impressive legislative records than his own. He was an inspiring orator, thoughtful, cool under pressure, and confidant enough of his own abilities to listen to divergent opinions in a nation divided against itself. The year was 1860.

    @Posted by: Carolyn, W. Palm Beach, FL | October 11, 2008 7:45 AM

    Seven score and eight . . .A scholarly lawyer from Illinois, distinguished in his profession yet with little executive experience, rises from humble origins. The unlikely nominee of his party, he edged out rivals with far more impressive legislative records than his own. He was an inspiring orator, thoughtful, cool under pressure, and confidant enough of his own abilities to listen to divergent opinions in a nation divided against itself. The year was 1860.

    Can/will George Soros offer his services to the Paulson team.
    Is there anything the citizens of the world can do or is the snowball too big?

    I have read everything that Kevin Phillips has written. Adding George Soros's insight to my knowledge base augments many of my previous conclusions. Last week I penned an essay on Taxation policies and the American Economy. In the essay I connected a tax system that started with Reagan which ushered in the era of greed and the tenure of Alan Greenspan that kept interest rates artificially low and understated the CPI. Both tax policy and low interest rates helped fuel the housing bubble along with the creation of the mortgage securities. I was pleased that Soros also tagged Greenspan as a major player in creating the crisis.

    I believe that Reagan-Greenspan "trickle down" economics is the major contributor to the Wall Street greed that has enriched a few at the expense of many and has led to the collapse of the capital markets.

    We have had 25 years of Reaganomics. It is a time for a drastic change and a return to working for the common good of all Americans.

    I don't pretend to know anything about the economy. I just know that I'm sick and tired of what out of control greed and capitalism has done to us.

    Thank you for having George Soros on your program tonight. Apparently, John McCain has listened to him because this is exactly where John McCain said he would begin -- first, by returning to regulated banking, second, by buying up foreclosures on the bottom end (negotiate a new mortgage at an affordable rate for the home owner secured by the FHA as long as the home owner legitimately qualified for the mortgage in the first place). That is step one. Mr. Soros was very clear that what we do now is very critical and taking one step at a time to correct one critical problem at one time -- and not the current path the current Treasury Secretary is taking by shoring up everything that begins to fall. The pain will be there but if we don't return to regulation we will dismantle what is left of our democracy and we will not return. All politcal ideologies are complicated and some, in fact don't work -- our particular democratic capitalism can work but must be regulated -- regulation must be in place -- or we lose the ability to govern ourselves. Unregulated markets lead to greed and corruption where it begins in the financial markets and then the poison enters into our Congress. If you are an American and reading this, don't be fooled that the candidate from Illinois has the ability to handle this. He doesn't have the experience, or the capacity to lead a nation -- he's not qualified. That's another story as we have had a leadership crisis in this country for the last 18 years. All the economic changes that took place in the last 18 years have lead to the financial crisis this nation is in today. The United States as the only successful democracy in the world is in critical condition and needs critical thinking right now.

    Bill: Thanks for having George Soros on your show. I was so moved that I sent the following letter President Bush.

    Dear President Bush:

    Please read, and watch the Bill Moyers PBS special on the economy:

    http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/blog/

    The interview is with George Soros, he explains the economic crisis and suggests what YOU can do about it.

    Please, Mr. President, watch this segment. Mr. Soros clearly explains what's going on, and has suggestions for how to proceed. His suggestions are NOT the emphasis of your present policy.

    You are still the president. This can't wait for the next president.

    You have to do the right thing, now.

    Mr. Soros makes sense of the situation, much better than you have in your speeches thus far. Please, make Mr. Soros one of your advisors, and do what you can to implement his suggestions... before it's too late.

    Sincerely, Robert Golden
    2002 East La Madera Drive
    Tucson AZ 85719
    (520) 323-0765

    -------------

    "The best way to make your
    dreams come true is
    to wake up."

    Bill,

    What a breath of relief to have Mr. Soros on your program.

    He is a man who understands and tells the truth to the American people, if they are paying attention and listening. Instead of beating around the bush, he came right to the point, and said that the time has come for Americans to realize that we account for less than 5% of the World's population, and consume, consume, consume 25% of the worlds goods! That's crazy.

    God knows, in a world of 6.5 billion people and growing fast, that cannot continue. The American nation has to wake up to a life that is filled with quality and value.... not measured by material wealth, possessions and power.

    Our paradigm must change, if we are to survive as a nation and a world.

    Our Democracy must be governed by the people, not by corrupt politicians, bankers, and lobbyist power brokers.

    Dear Mr. Moyers,

    Thank you for your choice of topics tonight.

    Mrs. Jamieson seems to be missing what I believe makes the Keating 5 episode relevant: 1. That Senator McCain's campaign advisers include lobbyists whose activities do not support Sen. McCain's contention that he is free of lobbyist influence (Mr. Black comes to mind), and 2. Senator McCain as recently as March 2008 is on the record as stating that he believes the housing situation can be dealt with by further deregulation of the mortgage industry and the financial entities offering those mortgages.

    Although in the last 10 days or so Senator McCain has altered this position to state that regulations for the 21st century financial market vehicles are now needed and the financial regulatory system needs revising, this is a very late recognition on his part. There is no indication that his close advisor Phil Gramm has changed his mind and I believe it unrealistic to conclude that any revisions a McCain presidency would offer would do the job as I believe should be done. I believe it is entirely fair to point out that Senator McCain's support for deregulation has a long history. Among the consequences of that philosophy are major financial problems resolved at tax payer expense on prior occasions, of which the S & L bailout following delay in the feds enforcing Direct Investment prohibitions on Savings and Loan Associations, such as Keating's Lincoln S & L, was the first such major event. The Keating 5 intervention was at least part of what caused that delay in federal enforcement of the rule and allowed the failure of Lincoln S & L to become far more expensive than if enforcement had taken place when Sen. McCain and his 4 colleagues met with regulators in April 1987. At that time (April 1987) Cindy McCain's father had over $300,000 invested in one of Keating's shopping mall projects.

    I believe that deregulation is at the heart of the problem of the housing "crisis," that Senator McCain's philosophy, supported by lobbyists such as Phil Gramm, are a major part of the problem, and thus his long past record of favoring deregulation, including delay by the feds of enforcement which is directly related to the Keating Five episode, is indeed relevant to the current campaign.

    It is appropriate to note that Senator Obama has advisors who, during the Clinton administration, strongly favored deregulation, former Secretary of the Treasury Rubin, being one of these. However, Senator Obama favors regulation of financial institutions and their oversight to assure that laws passed by Congress are complied with. He does not support the deregulatory perspective long held by Senator McCain.

    Please keep up the good work and choice of timely issues for your program.

    Dotty

    I view this current financial debacle as parallel to our horrific abuse of detainees at Guantanamo Bay and are related in this way: the almost "religious" belief in unbridled ungoverned acting on impulses in a spirit of hubris that no wrong can be done if in the name of "freedom". We need to grow up as a society and exercise much much more maturity and humility and restraint.

    i related strongly to comments about the necessity for a new paradigm. If we accept basic physics and the second law of thermal dynamics- energy goes from a state of use to disuse; and further we accept the reality that our economies and population booms have been artificially propped-up by the fossil fuel infrastructure for the past 125 years; and that scales of economies have been unrealistically inflated for the last 400 years with banking systems leveraging holdings exponentially: then contemplating a new world order that is much more in rhythm with the realities of nature is LONG overdue. The natural sciences speak of the "carrying capacity" for a particular organism within an environmental system. Perhaps, we humans have exceeded the carrying capacity of our environment- peak population/peak oil/peak debt. Our current "burn rate" within the Gaian system needs to reorganize in to a much smaller mass with WAY less energy thru-put. Enlightened self interest giving way to enlightened whole interest.

    Again, thank you.

    From the observations of George Soros and a number of others (interviewed on PBs and NPR in the last two weeks) there seems to be a clear consensus that Federal intervention is needed, but must be targeted at the grassroots (to prevent/slow further foreclosures) to help infuse public and private capital into banks and to breakup huge combinant bank/financial institutions. Yet Congress and the Bush administration continue to dawdle and focus on financial bailout of increasingly larger institutions. How can we stop this NOW?

    It is obvious that a great era is ending. The capitalistic market has become a great spectre arriving just just a little early for Halloween. As it dies worldwide though, it is still sucking vast amounts of money from the people of many nations into hidden pools of unmeasurable wealth. The term "deregulation" has become a synonym for "gotcha", and now the survivors are having to figure out how to "bell the great cat".

    The very concept of a free enterprise system requires a free market. Without a free market, there can be no free enterprise. No market can possibly be free if it is dominated by a single organization or a small number of very large organizations. No free market can exist in any economic system unless there is adequate governmental regulation and enforcement to protect it and keep more powerful companies from seizing that market and reshaping it for their own purposes. A free market is not a market that is free FROM governmental regulation but a market which is free BECAUSE it is strongly regulated by the government. It makes no essential difference whether a market is dominated by a communistic, dictatorship, or theological government or by a cartel of capitalistic corporations, in any of those cases the free and competitive market ceases to function and begins to serve its master.

    Good post Allenwrench.

    Materialism is like a monkey on our backs. The Story of Stuff, a 20 min video shows how our consumerism on steroids is destroying the environment, wasting our resources and hurting us economicallly.

    http://www.storyofstuff.com/

    people don't think they're being materialistic because it's like the water fish swim in, everywhere, but unseen.

    It is a result of the reductionist mechanistic dominated world view.
    In that view, everything is just stuff, including human beings. So who cares if we destroy the ecosystems of earth. It's the wrong world view. As quantum physics shows, the universe is way wierder than that. It's not just stuff. When Werner Heisenberg was interviewed and asked what is was like the day he met Niels Bohr, he said "that was the day I realized that atoms are not things".
    There's food for thought

    The current systemic economic crisis and tonight's Bill Moyer's Journal call to mind an interesting book that would make a great segment for the show. It is, "The Logic of Failure: Recognizing and Avoiding Failure in Complex Situations," by Dietrich Dorner.

    It is a fun and interesting read that is both compelling and troubling. It points out pitfalls of human nature to which both experts are as subject as laymen. The book has excellent examples from both experiments and real life.

    In the transcript of the interview, please note that George Soros was referring to the "agent-principal" relationship in socialism, not "agent principle" as you have spelled it.

    His reasoning is consistent with another paradigm called "Socionomics," developed by Robert Prechter and based on the earlier work of Ralph Nelson Elliot. Socionomics links economic cycles to social mood. The two unfold in tandem, in sequential stages or waves. In this paradigm, "irrational exuberance" is a "wave five" phenomenon, followed by an "awakening to reality" which, as Mr. Soros warned, can lead to an exaggeration in the opposite direction (an undervaluing of assets, or profound loss of trust). Eventually the excesses are purged from the system and real progress can again unfold.

    Soros made LOTS of GREAT points. One he missed (maybe due to shortage of time) was, In My Humble Opinion:
    This is NOT a "mortgage crisis", its a
    1) WAGE crisis. Our wages have been flat for YEARS while inflation not been flat. Into that gap went the house.
    2) Risk crisis. The MBAs hired people that made them feel good rather than people that could DO good (at the job). CBS 60 Minutes just interviewed someone who said "a lot of those people on wall st were just not very good at their job."
    2a) Risk ... homeowners bought houses out in the middle of nowehere and then ... gas went to $4/gallon! DUH! Most of my old friends in the suburban wasteland of South Florida pooh-poohed me when I said "I don't want to live anywhere I *have* to drive to live. Who's laughing now? No, not me, because their lack of risk analysis is bringing down ALL our credit.
    2b) We allowed obscene wages to be paid to MBAs on Wall St on the theory that they knew what they were doing, that "Government is the problem."
    No, PEOPLE are the problem, and PEOPLE are PEOPLE everywhere you go whether that's the corrupt Big Church of the Dark Ages that lead to Protestantism, or Big Government or Big Corporations. Again, lack of basic risk analysis.

    Soros is right, people cannot percieve truth or reality. Its all framing. Unfortunately lately we've been framed by the deregulators that wanted us to believe that corporate MBAs are somehow morally superior and competent and worth the high wages.

    So I've called my Congress Critter and said, I'll support the Bailout as long as you seize the assets of those who "managed" and "directed" us into this mess in the first place.

    I see Soros said Paulson was trying to "save" the stockholders from the pain of their decision to support these MBAs.

    Well, now we know better. Those MBAs are just the priest class that sold out Jesus in his time and indulgences later ... now they're called "Credit Default Swaps" and "Derivitives" or whatever it takes to avoid oversight and responsibility for hiring ignoramuses that are better at selling the sizzle than cooking the steak. It is unfortunately human nature to choose people that make us FEEL good and so they hire "yes men" just like dictators do. Not people good at their work. The US has lost its former reverence for tradesmen and craftmanship. Now the pied piper has returned his carbonized side of cow and is demanding payment.

    So I feel vindicated. And screwed. It sucks to be (at least partially) right.

    horray for the repug party. they have really screwed up our country completely. The dem party meanwhile also went along with the deregulating free market madness(clinton signing the bill that did away with Glass Stegall act and the dem party cheerleading other deregualtion). lets face it people this country needs to have third parties like the green party that will actually represent us. we need to have people like nader to run for office all over the country. people who are not beholden to corporate money. these progressive parties need to work together to retake our democracy back from corrupt repugs and dems.
    i will vote for the green party and help them grow all over the country. i would hope all readers here will check the green party website www.gp.org and really consider more progressive and representative parties.
    i live in galveston and this city will take a long time to recover from hurricane ike. the hospital here UT medical Branch just laid off 4000 people because of this hurricane. where the hell is this damn fema or bush clown admin? they have not done a thing so far to get money to get UTMB open again. because of repug foot dragging in the tx legislature they may take their sweet time helping UTMB. between the criminal iraq war and this bailout swindle its a wonder if UTMB will open anytime soon.

    Too tired to write something new tonite. I posted this on Charlie Rose a couple days ago:

    Our economic problems stem from our trade deficit, our budget deficits, an oversupply of money and credit, and a lack of savings. We perhaps would not have come to this pass with better regulation, but that did not CAUSE the problem. We've created money instead of saving, bought Chinese products with it, or sunk it is real estate, and those dollars have flooded the rest of the world, no doubt now making them quite angry with us. Keynes and Friedman were interested in finding monetary ways to deal with economic problems instead of substantive ones, but that is wrong-headed. The only way to get America working again is - surprise, surprise - to get America WORKING again. The question overall is not leveraging vs de-leveraging, but mis- or mal-investment, altho this would be much less of a problem if money, itself, were not being manufactured out of whole cloth to such an extent instead of being made to come from savings, which anchors it to productivity. The way out of a liquidity trap (assuming you believe one to exist in the first place) is to offer investors real value. Those left with money will be the object of envy yet and their position considered unwarranted, if not tyrannical, but there is no other alternative, unless you want to take it from them by taxes, or repudiate or bypass it altogether. Indeed making more money will depreciate what they hold, but without any change in productivity it can not change the situation and will probably encourage more hoarding of essential skills and commodities or encourage immediate consumption, as always in an inflationary situation, so lowering rates amounts to a temporary relief measure, unless you believe in fantasies such as the multiplier. Besides, more debt means proportionately more money, not less, in their hands. The best way to solve income distribution problems is to ensure that people have to work for their money rather than having it given to them. Anyone taking an entry-level microeconomics course should realize immediately that theoretically no one should make a profit. The only reason they do is through force, as in cases when an employer pays below mkt wages, or fraud, the latter including writing themselves below mkt rate loans, or loans based on anticipations rather than savings. Too, increasing debt is another step towards a command economy. Another way to put this is that stagflation is always the case in economic downturns, created over a long period. We have seen productivity gains on paper from the greater involvement of the Chinese and 3rd-world countries, and hence little rise in what has now been whittled down to "core" inflation, but this has hollowed-out our own real productivity, and the latter is not an accurate measurement. Rather than Iran or al-Qaeda our number one enemy has all along been the Chinese, who, instead of dealing with, we have embraced with a view to world peace, but that has to stop. If it does not, both we, and the rest of the world, will be lowered to their level. An oft-used metaphor in old econ literature for this process is that wealth or trade, like water, seeks a level, and seems to me to be perfectly accurate. Having written all this over-and-over, so many times, I, nevertheless, have to say that I see a great deal in the US and the rest of the world to be hopeful about. Science and technology have made very great strides in my lifetime and I have come to think of them as more or less independent of the normal measures of our economy, neither influenced by economic incentives, nor discouraged by their absence. Of course, it would have helped if many of our brightest kids hadn't been diverted into law and finance, while our short-sighted management, harried by the stock mkt, has no doubt hurt long-term development. Scientists and engineers tho are the real republicans we never see or hear from in our political life and the backbone of any nation. For those seeking good investments and ways to help, it is probably a good time to start putting money into those small-caps instead of consumption, gold and real estate.

    The British political writer William Cobbett on a similar occasion 200 yrs ago: "To hear the greater part of people talk upon this subject, one would imagine, that the Bank Notes were the meat, drink, and clothing of the inhabitants of this island; and, indeed, that they gave us sunshine and showers and every thing necessary to our existence. One would really suppose, that the general creed was, that the Bank Directors were the Gods of the country, that they were our Sustainers if not actually our Makers, that from them we derived the breath in our nostrils, that in and through them we lived, moved, and had our being. No wonder, then, that there should be an apprehension and even a horror inspired by the idea of a total destruction of the paper-money; But, Gentlemen, is there any ground for these apprehensions? Are such apprehensions to be entertained by rational men? No: the corn and the grass and the trees will grow without paper-money; the Banks may all break in a day, and the sun will rise the next day, and the lambs will gambol and the birds will sing and the carters and country girls will grin at each other, and all will go on just as if nothing had happened,..."

    Is there something inherent in the human condition that causes economic boom and bust cycles?
    Why or why not?

    Answer: Yes! The privatization of the nation’s money is the principle cause of the business cycle.

    When nations use privately owned central banking systems; when the bulk of the money supply is created as debt; when that debt must be repaid with interest; when no one creates the interest; when the interest must be paid from the money supply, leaving too little money to repay the debt; when new loans must be originated to make up the money shortage, giving the system the illusion of stability; when bankers create a growing pyramid of debt resulting in and unsustainable economy; when the system reaches it mathematical limits where the requirements for interest payments equal or exceeds the capacity for new borrowing; when the only variables that bankers have to manipulate and control the money supply are interest rates and credit – the system crashes.

    At 5% compound interest a dollar grows into two dollars in about 14 years, the approximate length of the business cycle. If the banks take 5% interest, and the money supply grows; the banks will take. as profit, an amount equal to the entire initial money supply.

    allenwrench...thank you for that. nice read. nice angle.
    i concur.

    soros has a few problems. he acknowledged that the "system
    is broken" and that the government was reacting and therefore not anticipating the market...they hadn't gained control in other words. now, he blames the market for this failure and decides to advocate government control to make a market correction in the short term and also the long term. not only is this unrealistic, but his premise is faulty, just as he described is the main point.
    what happens when an institution with its own structural weaknesses assumes ownership of a phenomena that is out of whack?
    why should one hold more trust in the institution that is already stressed on credit and complicit in the malinvestment?
    it sounds to me like soros has an agenda. he sounds like obama. saving a system that is broken instead of letting the market adjust to show more honest prices. accurate market analysis is distorted by the governments actions. there is no reason to believe that government is, or will, act in the best interest of the people especially when one considers that fact that the US gov't is not an entrepeneur/investor and shouldn't be. aren't they the very things we are talking about regulating?

    Mr. Moyers your interview George Soros hopefully was watched by not only America, but Canada as well.

    Back about 30 years ago governing political decided to use the taxation system to extort money out of the public to use to finance private venture projects. This took place all around the world, companies looked for perks, grants, forgivable loans, tax breaks before they would set up shop. Here in Canada that put province against province, and at the same time starved out many good social programs which " taxes " were collected for in the first place.
    The United States business community did the same, stste against state...the taxpayer suffered.

    You see , our taxation system was set up to fund government programs, but political parties realized that they could misdirect these taxes into the pockets of "their" business friends.

    And many of these companies took the taxpayers money and run or just went bankrupt. Nevertheless the taxpayers suffered the burden of the bill.

    Here we are today in the final stages of a financial crisis, and it is my opinion that the formula used to bring this crisis to the feet of the citizens , was the same formula ENRON used, but it was practiced over the past 30 years.

    The big difference between the United States and Canada is...you jail your crooks...we send forgive them and then cover their losses. Isn't democracy and this monster called "government" great?

    Mr. Soros seems like an honourable and accountable man, America should feel blessed to have such a person.

    Cheers Wayne Coady Nova Scotia Canada

    Cheers

    Remember this maxim: Nobody in charge of any disaster ever admits he or she may have been dead wrong. Four years ago, George W. Borrow couldn't think of a thing he'd done wrong. I'd wager the reply would be the same today.

    I just finished watching the segment with George Soros and was literally brought to tears. I believe so much in what Mr. Soros is saying and it is frightening and infuriating that our government is doing everything wrong during this critical time. One of the most important comments that Mr. Soros made was about Henry Paulson. Mr. Paulson does not have our interests in mind. He can't possibly. His training and long standing experience is exactly the opposite of what we need now and he is blind to the fact that he doesn't know what to do.

    What choice do I have as I watch my IRA shrink. What choice am I going to have when I have no money to retire on and no social security.

    We need some kind of revolution brought about by the people. We can't sit back and let our government destroy our way of life.

    Mr. Moyers: I heard a rumor that you might be retiring. Please don't. We need you. You are the only one left.

    After the interview with William Greider, I read his book "One World Ready or Not". He called the current economic collapse and even had the timing right, saying it would come within the next 10 years (his book was written 10 years ago).He was also correct in his analysis of why it was inevitable in our current capitalistic system!I would like to hear his comments now that this mess has occurred.

    We're setting the stage for when we come out of this of a massive inflation holocaust

    The way to solve this problem is to let people go bankrupt," Rogers said.

    Then you will hit bottom and then you start over. The people who are sound will take over the assets from the people who aren't sound and we will start over. This is the way the world has worked for a few thousand years.

    The current rescue plans, which will force governments to issue more debt, print money and flood the markets with liquidity, will flare up inflation after the crisis is over and will create worse problems, Jim Rogers

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/27097823

    George Soros is right in acknowledging that neoliberalism is a species of fundamentalism. What is so unique about it is not just that it argues that the market is a template for organizing all of society, but that it argues there is no alternative, no future outside of its narrow and anti-democratic view of the world. The real issue here is what forces beyond the economic have enabled this type of fundamentalism to take hold in American society. See the following for one answer: http://www.dissidentvoice.org/Aug04/Giroux0807.htm

    Certainly. The philosophy behind the deregulation that enabled this crisis was a blind faith in Milton Friedman as the Prophet of God.

    Yea,

    Newt has the balls to blame ''liberals'' for the failed economics of the last 8 years.

    Now who was the President during this 8 year reign of terror ?

    Oh yeah and what party was it that did all of that filibustering so nothing could get done ?

    Yeah, goods times if you're a Republican huh.....

    Bill,

    Or maybe you'd prefer good ole boy Newt Gingrich.
    Yes he is still at it with his website ''American Solutions''.

    Here's an exerpt from his site :
    Get the Politicians Out of the Economy: Recipe for Sound Economic Growth
    By Newt Gingrich on September 21, 2008 1:54 PM 15 Comments
    (This is a message from Newt Gingrich to American Solutions members on getting the American economy back on track, and the key is to get the politicians out of the economy and then have a recipe for sound economic growth.)


    You know, the last few weeks have been painful economically and even more painful as an historian and citizen.

    On Saturday, September 27 we'll spend six hours proposing bold dramatic change at our second annual Solutions Day which will be in the Cobb Galleria in Atlanta, Georgia and will be on the Internet on Dish Satellite Television, on Direct TV, and all the details are at AmericanSolutions.com.

    But, the rate at which politicians, lobbyists and bureaucrats in Washington are doing the wrong things in the wrong way requires speaking out NOW. This is why I wanted to share today with the members and supporters of American Solutions some thoughts on the state of the economy and what we need to do to move America forward.

    If you're like me and like most Americans, you've watched your savings shrink, your house value decline, the price you pay for gasoline rise, and the economy within many of us run a company get worse. But your economic problems have been dwarfed by the appalling behavior of Washington politicians.

    Not only are they undermining our economic future but if unchecked they will ruin the future for our children and grandchildren.

    Washington politicians in both parties are panicked and as a result they are making things worse.

    The liberals in Congress have responded to the American people's anger over energy prices by trying to pass fundamentally dishonest bills which raise taxes and at the same time limit energy production while pretending to increase it. These dishonest efforts would actually make it permanently illegal to drill for oil and natural gas in most of the areas offshore. Instead of letting the ban on offshore oil drilling end naturally on October 1, the liberals in Congress are trying to enact a new, permanent ban on offshore development. These dishonest "no drill bills" offer no hope of solving the underlying challenge of energy for a country which is shipping $700 billion overseas every year. And notice you now see foreign, sovereign funds with your money coming back to buy your banks and your companies because of our truly destructive energy policy.

    In the name of economic security the Congress passed a Sarbanes-Oxley law which is driving companies from public scrutiny into private ownership, driving new companies out of New York and into London for financing and slowing down dramatically the development of new companies. . Let me be very clear, Sarbanes Oxley has failed. It failed to warn about Fannie Mae. It failed to warn about Freddie Mac. It failed to warn about Bear Stearns. It failed to warn about Lehman Brothers. It failed to warn about AIG. And yet, while being a total failure in every big case, it adds $3 million dollars a year to the cost of a startup company having to hire accountants and take care of paperwork when they actually should be focused on growing, hiring people, and being productive. The result has been in the second quarter of this year, we had zero new public offerings by new companies, and in the third quarter we had one. We used to have thirty or forty every quarter. That's how bad Sarbanes Oxley is weakening this economy.

    In the name of national security Congress adopted a visa law which cripples America's ability to attract successful people, crippled our international tourism business, and weakened our ability to attract first class students in math and science.

    Congress insists on education policies which prop up failed bureaucracies, trap children in institutions which destroy their future -- and in some neighborhoods making prison much more likely than college. These failed policies guarantee the continuing decay of America in both economic and national security competition with China and India.

    Americans still put up with a failing healthcare system. They still pay too much for too little quality, too little choice, and too little convenience. Congress has thus far failed to improve safety by investing in electronic health records, failed to crack down on fraud, and failed to find a way through tax credits to make sure everyone can have health insurance.

    In the name of limiting legal immigration while ignoring the millions of illegal immigrants in America, the Congress refuses to adopt policies to increase the number of smart, educated and successful people who can come to America to work. This refusal leads to high value jobs being exported to, India, China, Canada, and elsewhere while low paying illegal jobs grow in the United States.

    For too long, Congress has failed to stop the practice of using surplus Social Security funds for other purposes, including pork barrel spending. This continued raid on Social Security makes it more and more difficult to achieve real reform for Social Security.

    Congress compounds our long term weakness in economic competition by sustaining the world's second highest corporate tax rate (three times higher than Ireland's), sustaining a legal system which is the most economically destructive on the planet, and taxing capital gains. All this while the world's best competitors encourage savings and investment with low corporate tax rates and zero taxes on capital gains.

    Faced with the economic mess they have made, most Congressional politicians then call for protecting the very jobs they are killing by adopting economically unsustainable but politically attractive demagoguery.

    And Newt's drivel goes on and on about how ''liberals'' have created this financial meltdown.

    Americans have been dumbed down so much it's embarassing.

    Yes Newt is calling for even LESS REGULATION.
    Here's site to read entire post
    http://solutionsday2008.com/blog/2008/09/get-the-politicians-out-of-the-economy-recipe-for-sound-economic-growth.html

    Bill,

    Why not have Naomi Klein on your show ?

    Naomi Klein says it best.....

    Free Market Ideology is Far from Finished
    By Naomi Klein - September 19th, 2008
    Whatever the events of this week mean, nobody should believe the overblown claims that the market crisis signals the death of "free market" ideology. Free market ideology has always been a servant to the interests of capital, and its presence ebbs and flows depending on its usefulness to those interests.

    During boom times, it's profitable to preach laissez faire, because an absentee government allows speculative bubbles to inflate. When those bubbles burst, the ideology becomes a hindrance, and it goes dormant while big government rides to the rescue. But rest assured: the ideology will come roaring back when the bailouts are done. The massive debts the public is accumulating to bail out the speculators will then become part of a global budget crisis that will be the rationalization for deep cuts to social programs, and for a renewed push to privatize what is left of the public sector. We will also be told that our hopes for a green future are, sadly, too costly.

    What we don't know is how the public will respond. Consider that in North America, everybody under the age of 40 grew up being told that the government can't intervene to improve our lives, that government is the problem not the solution, that laissez faire was the only option. Now, we are suddenly seeing an extremely activist, intensely interventionist government, seemingly willing to do whatever it takes to save investors from themselves.

    This spectacle necessarily raises the question: if the state can intervene to save corporations that took reckless risks in the housing markets, why can't it intervene to prevent millions of Americans from imminent foreclosure? By the same token, if $85bn can be made instantly available to buy the insurance giant AIG, why is single-payer health care – which would protect Americans from the predatory practices of health-care insurance companies – seemingly such an unattainable dream? And if ever more corporations need taxpayer funds to stay afloat, why can't taxpayers make demands in return – like caps on executive pay, and a guarantee against more job losses?

    Now that it's clear that governments can indeed act in times of crises, it will become much harder for them to plead powerlessness in the future. Another potential shift has to do with market hopes for future privatizations. For years, the global investment banks have been lobbying politicians for two new markets: one that would come from privatizing public pensions and the other that would come from a new wave of privatized or partially privatized roads, bridges and water systems. Both of these dreams have just become much harder to sell: Americans are in no mood to trust more of their individual and collective assets to the reckless gamblers on Wall Street, especially because it seems more than likely that taxpayers will have to pay to buy back their own assets when the next bubble bursts.

    With the World Trade Organization talks off the rails, this crisis could also be a catalyst for a radically alternative approach to regulating world markets and financial systems. Already, we are seeing a move towards "food sovereignty" in the developing world, rather than leaving access to food to the whims of commodity traders. The time may finally have come for ideas like taxing trading, which would slow speculative investment, as well as other global capital controls.

    And now that nationalization is not a dirty word, the oil and gas companies should watch out: someone needs to pay for the shift to a greener future, and it makes most sense for the bulk of the funds to come from the highly profitable sector that is most responsible for our climate crisis. It certainly makes more sense than creating another dangerous bubble in carbon trading.

    But the crisis we are seeing calls for even deeper changes than that. The reason these junk loans were allowed to proliferate was not just because the regulators didn't understand the risk. It is because we have an economic system that measures our collective health based exclusively on GDP growth. So long as the junk loans were fuelling economic growth, our governments actively supported them. So what is really being called into question by the crisis is the unquestioned commitment to growth at all costs. Where this crisis should lead us is to a radically different way for our societies to measure health and progress.

    None of this, however, will happen without huge public pressure placed on politicians in this key period. And not polite lobbying but a return to the streets and the kind of direct action that ushered in the New Deal in the 1930s. Without it, there will be superficial changes and a return, as quickly as possible, to business as usual

    ----What do you think? Is George Soros right that the present crisis was caused by an irrational faith in markets? Why or why not?

    It was caused by compulsive gambling, excess, greed and lies.

    Much of the stock market was / is fueled by the proliferation of new funds. Without the constant creation of funds to fill their portfolios the stock market would be at lower levels.

    http://stockcharts.com/charts/historical/djia1900.html

    But when I think of the stock market I think of Charles Ponzi. The man credited with inventing the first pyramid scheme.

    We live in a society of compulsive gamblers and not investors. Watch CNBC and see the Ponzi scheme in action with all the BS they throw at you.

    I marvel at the billions lost every day with the sub-prime debacle and how it is replaced at a blink of an eye. The government doesn't have to even print out the money, they just magnetize a silicon chip to create billions.

    Consumption is ingrained in us and we know no other way. And even if we wished to amend our ways, how could all our retirement funds take the hit?

    Our economy is not based on sustainable health - it is based low interest credit to encourage compulsive spending, debt and living a life of constant consumption with a 'disposable mentality' when it comes to durable goods.

    All this consumption to artificially fuel our economy to make our retirement funds only go up contributes to more and more global warming and the depletion of our natural resources.

    Then the governments juggle the numbers to make the inflation figures seem artificially low, so everyone's retirement portfolio will make them happy so they will continue to buy and consume more...and on it goes....the bill is coming due soon!


    ----Have you seen evidence of a parallel irrational faith in government regulation, both in the economy and elsewhere? Explain.

    I don't really know what you mean? But if you are referring to religious faith in politics - religion is based on wishful thinking...so are the hopes of the 'money printers' at the Fed.


    ----Is there something inherent in the human condition that causes economic boom and bust cycles? Why or why not?


    Sure, going back to Ponzi...when a man's mind is concentrated he is blind. The greedy can only see dollars and get blind to the fact hat they are walking off a cliff as they count their money.

    It all stems from our desire to 'try' and by happiness...by any means necessary. We are stuck with looking for inner fulfillment in outer possessions.

    Poorness is many time just a state of mind.

    From 'As A Man Thniketh'..."Wretchedness, not lack of material possessions, is the measure of wrong thought. A man may be cursed and rich; he may be blessed and poor...the poor man only descends into wretchedness when he regards his lot as a burden unjustly imposed."

    How can a person like Thoreau feel rich with $10 in his pocket, yet many a modern day millionaire feels poor? In two words - Self Worth. Self worth cannot be bought and resides within a person whereas money is external and sits in a bank vault.

    The acid test for such things is to take away a person possessions and strip a person naked and see how much self worth is left? Was all their self worth wrapped up in their house? Their car? Their trophy wife? Their bank account? If you ever wonder why rich people sometimes commit suicide after they have lost their wealth, this is the reason. All their self worth was locked up in a bank vault - there was nothing left within them to live for.

    If you equate living within a budget as being poor, then you are not looking at the big picture. To be practical, everyone has a budget to live within, if they want to manage their money successfully and stay solvent. Even Bill Gates with his billions has a budget. Depending on which projects he would take on, his billions wouldn't go far enough.

    Or lets go to the ultimate source, the US Government. Even though they can print money at will (more or less) they have a budget to follow. So why should we be any different and not accept our limits?

    Accepting my comfortable means and developing a real gratitude for those means has led to great inner peace, Whereas in my prior life nothing was ever enough and there was no peace. I look at the clarity a budget provides as freedom, not limitations. For without that clarity, I'd be in debt and suffering and far from feeling free.

    We can develop much happiness in life once we start practicing gratitude as Thoreau wrote: "I am grateful for what I am & have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. It is surprising how contended one can be with nothing definite - only a sense of existence."

    Would not every great man or woman that took a spiritual path be considered a failure if viewed in monetary terms alone without gratitude for the rest of their life? Was the Buddha, Jesus, Thoreau or Mother Teresa vastly rich? The Buddha a homeless beggar having to be fed by others with charity? A well loved Greco-Roman philosopher Epictitus was said to have 4 possessions when he died - a cloak, a bowl, a candle and sandals. Socrates even surpassed Epictitus in his simplicity.

    All Socrates owned was a cloak and walked around Athens barefoot. I am not writing this to persuade you to go around barefoot and not own anything. I am just conveying the knowledge that the great spiritual and philosophical practitioners of history would not be considered successes when viewed in monetary terms alone. But, they were great success when it came to inner peace.

    In the real world, we all need some money to live. Some people may get the wrong idea that I am against money. No, what I do guard against is turning money into a god and destroying one's life and the lives of others to get money by artificial means.

    Thoreau tells us that we need food, shelter, fuel and clothes as necessities. In modern times, I will add transportation to the list depending on your local. Everything else is pretty much optional. If we have these needs met and are still not happy, then their is no end to our supposed needs for that elusive state of happiness that we seek.

    We all seem to have no shortage of supposed needs or wants. The problem arises when we have to scale back and force ourselves as AA's 12 and 12 tells us to live "right size" and our self worth is attached to the idea of looking for inner fulfillment through outer possessions. Money is a useful tool, but as one writer reminds us - money only goes so far.

    Money can buy a house, but not a home.
    Money can buy a bed, but not sleep.
    Money can buy a clock, but not time.
    Money can buy a book, but not knowledge.
    Money can buy food, but not an appetite.
    Money can buy position, but not respect.
    Money can buy blood, but not life.
    Money can buy medicine, but not health.
    Money can buy sex, but not love.
    Money can buy insurance, but not safety.
    You see, money is not everything

    There is much more to living a serene, happy and balanced life than mere money. Money is nothing more than stored energy. Money is neither good or bad - it is people that do good or bad things with money. People also do good or bad things to 'get' money.

    The bible tells us in Phillipians 4:11 "For I have learned in whatever situation I find myself to be content. I am experienced in living low and I know what it is to have abundance. I have learned how to cope with every circumstance - how to eat well or go hungry, to be well provided for or to do without." While not great advice for all occasions, it underscores the fact that happiness resides within us and not in things.

    Peace and contentment is not limited to any one religion and is open to all. The problem for some of us with absorbing such wisdom is that of our own prejudices. I discussed this in my earlier post "Our guiding Light - Prejudice or Truth" if you want a copy write me.

    I was talking with a lawyer last summer. He was a millionaire and had a nice penthouse office with big leather tufted upholstered chair and a secretary to fetch his coffee and donuts all day. He was grossly fat and had hard time breathing as he wheezed and coughed.

    He also had a badly swollen leg that might need amputation from diabetes and poor circulation. As he recalled all his projects to me I could see why he was in so poor physical shape. He had no shortage of business ventures, he was in automobile dealerships, real estate develop, metallurgy and reclamation, venture capital loans as well as his law practice.

    He was all about making money, but was bankrupt when it came to healthy living practices. It did not sink in to him that sitting on your butt all day, smoking, drinking coffee, getting stressed out and eating junk foods is not healthy living no matter how much money you make.

    No matter how 'rich' a person is they cannot pay their butler to eat healthy foods for them nor have ones butler or maid do ones exercises and sweat for them. We are all on equal ground in this area. I discussed this in detail in my earlier post "The King and Queen of Good Health" When I write about BALANCED LIVING, this lawyer is a textbook example of UNBALANCED living. I tried to plant some seeds in him through living a life of voluntary simplicity, healthy eating and exercise. You know what he told me?

    He said he had too many bills to slow down and had no time for exercise. Oh well, all I can do is plant seeds in others...I can't force them to sprout. Being a millionaire wasn't enough for the lawyer, he still had 'poorness' consciousness.Thoreau once said: "a man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to leave alone." This millionaire was much too busy to live right. He reminded me of a quote from Ruskin.

    "In a shipwreck, one of the passengers fastened a belt about him with one hundred pounds of gold in it, with which he was afterwards found at the bottom. Now, as he was sinking--had he the gold? Or had the gold him?"

    I took some time off when I left the meeting with the lawyer to go trail running. I am most grateful and rich for having such wilderness just 15 minutes away. While running, I recalled how I used to visit these same woods for nearly a decade, yet never heard a woodpecker until a few years ago. My mind was too concentrated with worries and my own obsessions of money and material things.

    I heard my first woodpecker in the summer of 2001. The woodpeckers were always in the woods, but my mind was not. I was present with body only. My mindless state was not limited to the woods - I was mindless in my daily life as well. My Buddhist practice reminded me that mindfulness of the present moment is the foundation for living a life at peace. Peace is not in the past, nor is it in the future.

    Peace is always in the present moment. Once I let go of past and future obsessions and became present, all of a sudden I was able to see and hear many new things in my life. And just like the woodpeckers, these gifts were always in my life - I just could not see or hear them. As I relaxed after my run near a small waterfall and listened to the birds sing and the woodpeckers rat-a-tat-tat, I gave thanks for my two good legs, my health and for the clean air and luscious green nature that surrounded me.


    Contentment makes poor men rich. Discontent makes rich men poor. ~ Benjamin Franklin

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