Recently I have found it difficult to turn on the television without hearing someone expressing outrage about something related to this “financial crisis.” People have cried about the reckless traders, in the dark land known as Wall Street, whose behavior allegedly caused the crisis. They have moaned about the $Billions “taken” by the evil Bernard Madoff. Now the hue and cry resounds from Washington-and from Main Street-about the “outrageous” bonuses paid to employees of AIG, Merrill Lynch, and anyone else who made more than the President.
We love to have people to hate.
I make no defense of poor performance or outright fraud in the market, but I think someone needs to put all of this outrage in perspective.
Where’s the outrage toward the reckless traders-more particularly their bosses-at the Federal Reserve whose actions certainly contributed more to market meltdown than any options trader?
Where’s the outrage over the grandest Ponzi scheme of all time-the Social Security System? The Social Security System takes-in their case they actually take, by force-money from one group of people and gives it to another. The pyramid amounts to $Trillions over time. It makes Bernie Madoff look like a penny ante piker.
Where’s the outrage over the salaries of all the politicians and bureaucrats in Washington, who take our money and give us a mess in return? They may not get paid as much as the poor performers on Wall Street, but they do a lot more damage. And they make the rules by which the Wall Streeters operate (more about the actual value of those rules later.)
So, let investors watch over the “reckless” traders. Prosecute those who commit fraud. Let the market decide what financial traders and basketball players make. But don’t give them so much air time.
Give the coverage to the people in the legislative branch of government whose crimes far exceed those of the people getting the coverage.