Time eating toasted cheese

            Accordingly things need to make sense to us for us to have any sense of reality in this world; as of late things are anything but acting accordingly Inflation has plummeted to near record lows, so prices should be going down not up? Gasoline demand is high yet in some areas it now sells for under a buck seventy?  China is in a major recession and its exports have never been higher? We are carrying a trillion dollars in new debt and are told, that in twelve to fourteen months things should be back to normal? What tha?

            The only thing normal it appears are the people who would rather take the money and run than actually work for it. Not that stealing isn’t’ work. But the better you are at it; the less work it becomes. Take the investment company of Bernard L Madoff, in New York City. It appears the 5o billion or so is gone. Gone in an elaborate Ponzi scheme are the life savings of hundreds as well as the money it seems of such high profile people as the Spielberg and countless other charities that hoped to get more bang for their buck! The rich it appears are not going to get any richer this time. Madoff used all the new money coming in to his fund to pay interest on the older accounts. He got caught up in the credit crunch and when new money ceased to come in the whole operation fell like a stack of cards.

            That kind of money however you would think would draw some serious looking over. How do you get an entire company to be complicit in bilking its investors? For sure it starts from the top down, but doesn’t someone between the fifteenth floor and the penthouse blow the whistle? Even Enron had a whistleblower. Apparently those around Mr. Madoff were doing pretty good as well. Why rock the boat when everyone gets a nice Christmas bonus!

            Just last year the SEC investigated the company when people began asking how is that the company was paying such high returns when everyone else was not even offering anything close. Their report said the company was doing just fine? How is that so? If one ever wonders what the ultimate challenge of having professionals go from government to business and back again, one certainly can begin to understand how grey an area we can get into real fast! Foxes and hen house guard duty never works out best for the chickens!

            Take Robert Rubin, the former Treasury secretary. Before and after becoming head of CITI group he had quite the history of helping his business associates manueve their way though government red tape and closed doors. He is up to his elbows in what did he know and what he didn’t know. How is it possible he didn’t’ see the train wreck coming? No matter how it turns out though, you can be sure he walks away from the disaster with the car and the keys to the condo’ nice houses and club membership while those who invested with him will be lucky to get toasted cheese for lunch.

            The cold hard reality of this mess is that despite the hopes and aspirations you might have had for the upcoming administration everything they will do, or want to do, is tied to the economy. Granted we live in the land of OZ where the man behind the curtain can make money as long as the people believe the money is good. But sooner or later folks we all pay. Sadly it appears you and I will be paying a lot sooner than some others! And what about Detroit?




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