Pay No Attention To That Man Behind the Curtain
by Bruce Newman
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These are the opening words of a singularly clear-eyed writer I read earlier todayÖ
"The Dow dropped another 338 points on Friday...and lost another 2 % early this morning. How much more of this can investors take? Berkshire Hathaway fell below $100,000. And GM appeared to be heading for the junkyard. A GM bailout would cost $200 billion, say the papers.
Uh oh...thatís more than the feds have on hand. And right behind GM are cities, states, colleges...all with their hands out...
Yes, they are all of vital national importance. We canít let them fail, can we?
Of course, itís all nonsense.
Automakers...governments...they go broke from time to time; itís no big deal. And colleges... who needs them? You can get a much better education just keeping your eyes open. Right now, Mr. Marketís Advanced Seminar on Economic Corrections is delivering one helluva lesson. Of course, the tuition is very expensive..."
I think itís fitting that The Wizard of Oz, 1937 depression era version, was on over the week end. I always liked it when Dorothy and her crew were scared of the all powerful Oz until the dog, Toto, blew his cover.
ďPay no attention that man behind the curtain!Ē said Oz in a vain attempt to keep the fear going. But they pulled back the curtain. Too late. Busted.
Every day we are treated to a roller coaster ride of fear. The Dow is up, now itís down. But gas has come downÖ for now. All the brilliant economic minds of the world are getting together behind closed doors, and not so closed doors, to see if they can wrestle a solution away from that bad ole economy thatís messiní with us. Pray for them that they are victorious and allow us to return to the days when there were no immediate consequences to our ignorance. And donít forget about global warming and that asteroid that might hit us one day. Weíre on it! they say.
My heroes. I know I sleep easier at night knowing that many of the same people who greased the skids toward our current pickle are in charge of getting us out. Carry on Deputy Fife!
Have you ever heard of John Maynard Keynes? Heís dead now but heís the guy who engineered our profligate model of deficit spending. And guess what? He was a homosexual. Yeah, yeah, I know. It has no bearing on what job he does. Thatís what you think. Deficit spending is the system that spends so much money that those not yet born will still be paying for it. Is it a coincidence that homosexuality has no future orientation and neither does the system of spending Keynes developed?
But this is another question that will never be asked in ďpoliteĒ hearing. Why, how dare you bring up such a thing? You need sensitivity training. Donít you know anything about tolerance?
I hear yaí, Oz. But I pulled your curtain back a long time ago and caught you sitting on the john. Iíve never gotten the picture out of my mind, and I laugh every time I think about it. And every time I see the fearful headlines youíve spoken I just shake my head.
I stopped paying attention to that man behind the curtain years ago. Perhaps someday a real man will find his way there again.
When the wicked rise, men hide themselves: but when they perish, the righteous increase. - Prov. 28:28
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I watched parts of the movie this weekend too. :) I like your analogy with the wizard. The markets are so volatile right now. If I wasn't a believer I'd be a bit more worried. Thanks for your thoughts on this.