Thursday, December 03, 2009

A pyrrhic victory for the financial sector

The return of the plutocrats
So the plutocrats, it seems are going to win. They had a nasty couple of years, by plutocrat standards, and in a handful of companies operating under de facto state control they don’t quite have the free rein they would ideally like. But the system as a whole hasn’t changed, and those who thought that it might can’t quite believe how naive they were.

Arming Goldman With Pistols Against Public
Dec. 1 (Bloomberg) -- “I just wrote my first reference for a gun permit,” said a friend, who told me of swearing to the good character of a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker who applied to the local police for a permit to buy a pistol. The banker had told this friend of mine that senior Goldman people have loaded up on firearms and are now equipped to defend themselves if there is a populist uprising against the bank.

Any victory that leaves you so fearful that you feel the need to pack a weapon is no victory worthy of the name.

Do I have any readers who do not understand that this is a tragedy waiting to happen? What happens if some jittery banker shoots some homeless person who shouts at him? How is the public likely to respond to the spectacle of a banker shooting an unarmed homeless person? putting aside the resulting prison term.

What if an entire office panics at the sight of demonstrators and opens fire? Because that worked so well for the guards at the Bastille.

Goldman Sachs, and any other financial institution going down this dead end, needs to put away the guns and hire themselves an experienced conflict resolution team.

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