Sailors of the Infinite Sea

I just wanted to let you know that I have added two great links for all you space enthusiast out there.  The first one will take you to the solar sail project run by the Planetary Society’ which is an effort to deploy a functioning solar sail satellite into space.  The other is the home page of the Planetary Society itself where you will find all kinds of interesting information about space.  The links can be found on the left hand side of this blog towards the bottom under the heading Sites.


Thought of the Day

A lot of older Americans complain about the work ethics of the current younger generation.  Aside from the fact that this may be an over generalization, could it be possible that the younger generation has listened to the complaints their elders had of their treatment in the workplace?  Could it be possible that they have watched the news and had their eyes opened?  Is it possible that they have seen the truth that hard work really does not lead to the rewards our wealthy love to parade before us?  Could it be that they have seen through the illusion and been broken? Broken by the sight of the rich that get richer by cheating the system so that is what they see to emulate.  Broken by seeing that all their efforts won’t gain them an equivalent share.  Think of this before you judge, because they may know more than you.

Good Movies for Understanding Banking and Capitalism

For anyone who wishes to discuss my views on the banking industry and capitalism, I suggest you first watch a few movies that show you the truth behind the facade.  The first movie I may have mentioned before is called “Boom, Bust, Boom” by Terry Jones from Monty Python.

This is a documentary covering the historical facts about unrestrained and regulated capitalism with emphasis on accounting for human nature.  Our collective short term memory consistently leads us from a well regulated, functional economy into a euphoric free-for-all that ends in a depression mostly paid for by the lower classes.  The movie looks to these trends with an eye toward the crash of 2008 but does not closely examine the actual mechanics of the crash.  “Boom Bust Boom” is a great place to start learning about the flaws inherent to a capitalistic human society.

The second movie is “The Big Short”,

“The Big Short” is the movie you want to watch to see the actual mechanics of the 2008 meltdown created by the banks and Wall Street.  In addition, there is some fine acting by Christian Bale that I think deserved an Oscar.  The movie follows a small group of fund managers who saw the train wreck the banks had created through conflicts of interest with bank regulators, ratings agencies, and insurance companies.  Most enjoyably, the creators of the movie used some very entertaining methods to explain the quasi-legal shady methods the banks used in selling crap loans to the public as AAA rate securities and how the banks allowed people to basically bet on the outcomes of the real estate speculation running rampant in the country.  The chilling truth to be garnered from this movie comes at the end when you see how little was done to change the system.

Third is “Too Big to Fail”

This is the movie that covers the efforts to deal with the crisis.  While it is interesting to see the egos and mad scrambling that occurred when the world had to face the reality of what the banks had done to us, Henry Paulson comes across almost as a hero, which I disagree with since as a former Wall Street Banker he was probably just as guilty of the same unethical practices as the ones represented in the movie.  In addition, knowing these practices, he could have done more to curb the excesses when he took the position.  The fact that the Federal Reserve is staffed by so many ex-bankers should show you why the rich keep getting richer.

Finally, for the business side of the equation take a look at “Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room”,

This movie shows how banks and investors will blindly follow fast talking con-men down to the bitter end, praising them most of the way.  The egos are enormous, the bullshit deep, and the cost saddening because everyday people bore the brunt of it as usual.

All four of these movies should be required education for every high school student and a warning to all American Citizens.  We have been sold out time and again by the people we idolize.  The very people campaigning on the platform that it is not they that are the cause of your plight in life but the Mexicans, Blacks, Welfare State, Government, etc.  The truth of the situation is that banks will lend to anyone, because they can write a fat fee for themselves.  If the borrower is honest then the system works fairly well; however, if they are dishonest, they can ruin a lot of pension funds since the banks always pass the buck to the consumer.