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03/27/2005 Entry: "A South Sea bubble of our own - a bushco production"

"Most companies now offer their employees a broad array of mutual funds instead of just their own stock. In itself this is good common sense investing practice, and it also protects fund managers from charges of scheming. The other result of this practice is that worker' fortunes are now tied not just to their own companies but to the market as a whole.

"Which is where and who we come to both the problem and the scam. While fears regarding the solvency of Social Security are unwarranted, many corporate pension plans -- the once that have been so important in bankrolling the stock-market rise of the past few decades -- are themselves threatening to go bust, taking their parent companies down with them. The financial rot already has begun to seep into the airline and steel industries, and the auto sector may be next."

~snippage~

"In fact, many of history's most famous bubbles have been sponsored by governments in order to get out of debt. Britain, in 1711, persuaded bondholders to swap their bonds for stocks in the South Sea Company, which was expected to get rich off the growth industry of its day, the African slave trade. By the time the South Sea bubble collapsed, the government had indeed paid off its war debt -- and speculators were left holding worthless "growth sector" stocks. In 1716, John Law organized France's Mississippi bubble along the same lines, retiring France's public debt by selling shares to create slave-stocked plantation in the Louisiana territories. It worked, for a while.

"The U.S. Government is now attempting to run the same kind of scam. Bush would like to persuade Social Security claimants to exchange the security of U.S. Treasury bonds for a chance to buy growth stocks on which a much higher return is hoped for. No modern blue-sky venture comparable to the South Sea or Mississippi companies is needed. The stock market itself has become a bubble, borne aloft from the burden of generating actually goods and services by a constant flow of new retirement dollars."
"The $4.7 Trillion Pyramid. Why Social Security won't be enough to save Wall Street., by Michael Hudson, Harper's Magazine, April 2005, print edition (only, for now, sorry about that)

This comes as no surprise since we all know bushco has never had an original idea in their entire petty and spiteful lives.

What would happen if Wall Street melted down? Would money be worthless? Would we have to wear animal skins and live in communes?

(Holy Cow! Harper's is $6 USD/issue? SUBSCRIBE! It's $17/YEAR! Or $27/2 YEARS!)

 

 

 

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