Friday, March 11, 2011

Where's the money?

I gotta admit, I'm not a big finance or economics sort of person. I'd fall into the general demographic of people just trying to survive, people like you, the reader, you know what I mean. We go to work, get paid, pay our bills, make sure there's food on the table. That's life, right?

So this movie/documentary is made for people like us. The Academy Award winner for Best Documentary, Inside Job, was made so that we understand a little better what's happening to the global economy, how the financial meltdown happened and who's responsible for it. I may not know much, but I definitely have an instinct when things are not the way it should be, and reaffirms the facts that I've known all along, that large corporations are the real criminals and they have the ability to rewrite laws to work in their favor.

For example, when you put your hard earned money in the bank, shouldn't the bank have a responsibility to keep your money in the bank since they are entrusted to do just that? Not anymore. These days with deregulation, the line between banks and investment banks have blurred, meaning they can take your money and invest in wherever they see fit. I always found that to be a problem because as with all investments and their fine prints, they will always state that it is subject to market conditions and their projections are not indications of actual profit. That's how they protect themselves, but who's to protect you?

So when they make money, they issue billions in bonuses, and what happens when they don't? They still issue billions in bonuses. Thanks to large government bailouts. So that means that they lose billions of dollars in taxpayer's money, are not brought to justice, get bailed out, then issue even more bonuses to themselves.

Don't you think there's a better use for that money that can be used to eradicate hunger or develop new vaccines or something other than to line the big fat pockets of these corporate criminals? Don't even get me started on insurance companies that I think fall into the same category. Think about it, you pay insurance so that in case anything happens you are 'covered'. But what happens if nothing happens? Shouldn't they pay you back? Have you ever tried submitting an insurance claim? Let me tell you this, they will try all means and manners to not pay you back, they'd even bring in religion into it, by classifying something as an Act of God, try telling them you aren't religious and see how that goes. It makes sense, because naturally as a large corporation the goal is to retain as much profit as you possibly can, who really cares about you? The average Joe, working day after day just to survive, hoping for the best.

Sad to say when something does happen, Joe's on his own. They may say that economics is a complicated study that we will never be able to understand. But I think at the end of the day if you understand whats right and wrong, that's something these bankers ought to learn from you instead.