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On Markets, Morals and Misconduct

Updated on April 13, 2013

     “Put your money to work for you.” That is what any investment guru would tell you. You can retire safely if you just invest your savings and there are an endless number of investors, market specialists and/or bankers telling you just that. They are also ready to offer you endless options on how your money can “work” for you and “multiply” itself.

     I first realized the gravity of the situation when the story of Bernard Lawrence (“Bernie Madoff”) appeared in the mainstream media. I am sure everyone is familiar with how this maggot stole around sixty-five billion dollars through his “Ponzi scheme”. All sorts of people lost-out. Elderly couples lost their retirement money; some lost their homes and some were left out on the street.

     Bernie was not the only crook out there taking advantage of people’s ignorance, instability and weakness. The Texan, Sir Allen Stanford was charged with investment fraud in a case where he is supposed to have defrauded investors of over eight billion dollars. Just a month ago Goldman Sachs was charged with fraud by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Now, this is no longer a case where there are a few bad apples … this shit is chronic. It is as if we live in a world where we hand our money to magicians: “poof” … it’s gone.

     I suppose the people that lost money should go to the mirror and slap themselves a few times. Just because everyone is doing something (investing their money), it does not necessarily mean that “something” is something good. If that was the case we would all be crack-heads after the 1980s.

     Placing your life savings in the hands of some sort of a banker/investor to me is not very much different than taking it to a casino. You are gambling with it. There are of course secure investment options; you can put your money in a savings account but there is no significant return on it; no way that you can retire by doing that. Thus, most people making investments could eventually lose their money one way or another. Of course, a financial advisor will never tell you plainly that you can lose all your money if the “conditions” of the “markets” are “right”. They will tell you that “there is very little risk” or something along those lines to get you to give them your money as fast as possible and to get you out of their office so they can go play their eighteen holes.

     We all want to see the heads of people such as Bernard Lawrence on a post and sure, why not … I would too. Yet, it seems highly possible that another “Bernie” will come around who will somehow “beat” the system and steal people’s retirement or college money for example. As long as people are ready to hand off their money to someone else on the promise that the money will multiply itself, these types of scenarios will most likely continue.

     I am addicted to news and what I have realized lately is that the `markets` are really `getting to us`. I see business news commentators saying things such as: `The markets are really worried about the situation in Greece` and I am not sure if I should burst out laughing or go in a corner and cry. These bloody markets have acquired human attributes, `they get worried`. I wonder if they get thirsty too … someone go give the `markets` a beer to relax a little `cause they’re stressing us out.

     This seems to me like a gigantic issue which is not being talked about. It is really our misconduct that has led to this. We have allowed `the markets` to become more important than ourselves: we follow and serve the markets, not the other way around. We are the casualties when the well-being of the markets is in question. Just think of the `bail-out` …


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    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      I am glad you enjoyed the writing Mr. Spirit Whisperer. Indeed, I do find all this "playing with the markets" rather funny. It is all an illusion: numbers flying through the Air with very little significance but the one that people give to it. It has nothing to do with Nature or the flow of Life.

      Thank you for dropping by.

    • Spirit Whisperer profile image

      Xavier Nathan 6 years ago from Isle of Man

      This is a brilliant hub. You tell it the way it is but with humour and that is like taking sugar to help swallow the bitter medicine LOL!

      I have never had a pension nor have I ever saved a penny. I have never been in a position to invest anything but my time and effort. My wife and I always mysteriously have just enough to cover our needs and our four children and pay the bills and only once in all these years have we not been able to pay the mortgage and I am sure there must have been a good reason for that and Wakan Tanka knows that.

      Thank you my friend for another great read and laugh.

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 7 years ago

      I agree with the hub and "amillar", "We might as well vote for Bugs Bunny for all the difference it makes."

    • amillar profile image

      amillar 7 years ago from Scotland, UK

      I agree totally with this hub. Some things seem so glaringly obvious, I can't believe how they get away with it. Democracy has been completely undermined. We might as well vote for Bugs Bunny for all the difference it makes.

    • Winsome profile image

      Winsome 7 years ago from Southern California by way of Texas

      Hey Mr. Happy, so sorry about your addiction--the news that is. I thought addictions were something that made you high--most news I see....well let's just say there are happier things. When I see our county voters hand themselves--themselves! a 20% increase in sales taxes, I wonder if we aren't getting off easy trusting these suits. If Joe ever got in that pit, heaven help us. He wouldn't be smart enough to pocket it like they do, but he could sure steer us into a lamp pole...and don't knock the casino angle--not that I approve of gambling as a culture, but on some of these investments, maybe a spin of the wheel would work just as well. That all being said, I guess what it all boils down to is we still have the best system going--sorry as it is and America! America!

      May God thy gold refine

      Till all success be nobleness

      And every gain divine!

    • Petra Vlah profile image

      Petra Vlah 7 years ago from Los Angeles

      I just wrote a few days ago a hub “Bipolar disorder on Wall Street”. It actually speaks more about the greed of the ones who got all of us in trouble and the fact that are NO consequences for doing so.

      The financial terrorist are getting off easy and even pay themselves some fat bonuses for bankrupting the system and bringing the international financial markets on the very verge of disaster.

      And I agree with you, the only difference between the regular Joe and the Wall Street managers is the Armani suit.

    • Mr. Happy profile image

      Mr. Happy 7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      I always appreciate that you take the time to read and comment. Thank you Mrs. Immmartin.

    • lmmartin profile image

      lmmartin 7 years ago from Alberta and Florida

      Couldn't agree more. Still, people are fools and the idea of something for nothing (or very little effort) is just too enticing for some -- look at the fools waiting to be fleeced. The welfare of the markets? -- meaningless. We allowed ourselves to become a casino rather than an economy and will be paying the price for our gross stupidity and greed for a few more generations to come.