August 10, 2007
The ‘Con’ in ‘Economy’ (Bob Franken)
@ 11:48 am
Once upon a time a brokerage company had the slogan: “We make money the old-fashioned way. We earn it.”
How quaint. In modern times we careen from one get-rich-quick scheme to another, cheered on by the hustlers who make their commissions from our mistaken belief we can defy financial logic.
When will we learn? It was inevitable that credit would dry up. Suddenly so many of us are facing the real chance we may end up on the streets, thrown out of our home after foreclosure. There’s also the real chance that our entire economy will go to hell in a handbasket because loans that sustain business are no longer available as the world’s bankers and investors try and stave off their own collapse.
Wasn’t it just a few years ago the dot-com bubble burst? But we apparently never learn that the only “sure thing” in finance is the Law of Gravity.
These downward spirals seem to be inevitable. The P.T. Barnums who ooze around the world of capital can always count on suckers to buy into their latest gimmick as the path to prosperity. It’s really often the way to ruin, not just for the individuals and their families who plunge in without looking, but for the economies they drag down with them.