19 April 2009

Liars, Thieves and ...it takes a society to raise them

Dogs, monkeys, cats, rats and the bed bugs knew what was happening and nobody did not Do a thing”, said the professor at Stern business school (NYU), referring to the financial tumble down in the hedge fund class that I attended last week as a guest.

Even fire flies saw it in the darkest of the night. These vigilant eyes and ears belonged to CEO’s, CFO’s and Financial modelers who bundled up the products and sold them on Wall streets as a road side vendor would sell momentos on the streets of Manhattan. They enjoyed them to the hilt seeing their products fly out of their shops. After all they studied at the best schools and burned the midnight oil! PhD’s and MBA’s from Berkeley and Cornell, MIT and Brown and Princeton but they didn’t blink an eyelid as the shops were crumbling under their very own feet.

The C.F.A’s let loose their creativity and the lawyers from Yale, Columbia, and Harvard signed on the dotted line. And Goldman Sachs is still shielded because right from Treasury secretary Paulson (of the Bush government) to many senior members at the treasury department everybody has a tremendous stake in the company and so they have protected their booty without even throwing themselves at it! They made laws that protected themselves first. And as for the Ivy League lawyers, currently all of them are making money walking up and down the street offering opinions.

While the family down the road spends sleepless nights how to fill a prescription for their 8 year old sick child, the financial stalwarts are still chilling,– one just have to take a hike in the hoods where they sit relaxed under their roofs. Around 90 percent of the nations citizens do not have health insurance and a fee for one visit to the doctor is $200 and above – tests excluding. What relation between the two you ask? The fall off of the credit default swap down the cliff is but an insurance product. Health insurance started in the best of the intentions is now a conspiracy running wild and the visual statements are the mansions of Greenwich and upper east in Manhattan and personal skiing resorts in Colorado and Idaho.

The only word that screamed the headlines during the democratic campaign was Change - The same things written in a different color or a delta change in the economic system? Can the American people handle it IF he really bought about a stark difference. On some issues Obama has dropped his "stick" which he held strongly during the campaign. "My back is breaking" Obama confides to his treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner – (the man enveloped in a controversy for not paying taxes)as he pretends to pick up the stick.Were people already scared to even raise a sign of protest of this action of the newly elected President Obama who was choosing candidates for key posts. I ask "
President Obama,What should I look for? Light at the end of the dark tunnel, a silver lining or headlights of a speeding car?"
The only curve that is rising currently is the rates of unemployment without knowing gravity. What balks me is the communications department of companies who do not even think twice as they write white lies in their annual report because they leverage on shareholder complacency. And so the audacity of White lies continue to be written in the press and talked about on financial NEWS channels

How does it matter if another bank is defaulting? It should not have been established in the first place!(you would know by now that the mom and pop banks that spring up are sneaky ways of collecting funds from people by offering them eye popping interest rates)But another Managing director in a bank who was let go a few days ago says,"all the financial stalwarts were not richer than god (like how they are in Goldman Sachs)".Can we trust her?

As financial loans become fiercely difficult to come by and the real estate values even in New York ( the last of the markets where values drops) are tumbling down as I write this,the next morsel of one more heart wrenching news is just on the horizon – May be you will have to pay for your children’s public school? What next? Rationing on Electricity, groceries, (socialistic/communist countries do ) Water and Oil for the cars? Voters should make their elected representatives accountable {with a check list in hand this time} when they come asking for votes. democracy is a cliché now, but way better than communisim or dictatorial rule ( like indira gandhi's emergency period in india)

Few days after the Barclays logo went up the Lehman building in New York city at the end of September last year, an eerie atmosphere and the noise that sounded like a deafening silence surrounded the place. Christmas saw a decrease in celebrations and sales still wouldn’t run… It still does not. .Recession discount is a banner seen in many window displays so does closing signs. There is a recession price for everything – clothes, apartments, renovations (books, perhaps not) groceries. But there is a larger crowd in grocery stores and lesser crowd at the video games and electronic shops.

Some fathers/mothers are pursuing new careers at 40 and some have promised never to come back to the financial world. Enough is enough? As mankind trips to take a grip on this kind of financial cycle during their life time – the normal cycle of life continues – birth, anniversaries, weddings, milestones, graduations .... and death.

As for me I am planning to grow a green thumb.

06 April 2009

Which way !

  • Have you wondered why company executives lie and cheat ? Because they know they will not be caught and even if they do the punishment will be their backyard!? They will have jails with all the amenities and necessities.They wouldn't be treated as common criminals!(pun intended) The people who made these laws are themselves or their bum chum pals- they just handed over the administration to others ! -- god helps those who help themselves --now isn't that true ?
  • the bailout was decided by the very people who first pocketed the money and they knew beyond doubt that the government(in reality it is the tax payers) who will support them. The Bailout is another gimmick -- it is not the answer for what has happened -- if it was sub-prime mortgage and credit default swaps fiasco yesterday than tomorrow it is going to be a black swan.
  • Were any executives bought to task because of the subprime mortgage loss, but they all collected huge bonuses and commissions of the pseudo profits that was shown in the annual report year after year and have retained their position if they were not let go or resigned themselves! (sorry - not lost. but the money lies in their personal lockers and personal treasury).
  • The road from wall street is a two way road - from wall street to the treasury department in D.C and right back. It is not even funny that we bend backwards to make these frat boys in wall street casinos help become rich.
  • But on the other hand a thought goes through my mind as I write this ---If we collected all the money in the world and distributed it equally among every single person is it possible the same financially rich would have collected back more or less the same amount in a few years ?
The process of garnering money is a state of mind -- some can do it and others cannot !
images -- pictures scanned from an annual report of a financial company. ( i don't remember which one )

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