(People outside Stock Exchange Building in NYC, 1929, witness the beginning of the crash).
Eighty years ago, on October 24, 1929, a Thursday (later named Black Thursday) was the beginning of what would later be called the Wall Street Crash of 1929. The people in the U.S. had been encouraged to invest in the stock market, under the belief that by investing on Wall Street, they would get rich. The truth is that the people who ran Wall Street simply kept inflating the values of stock to defraud the public and get more people to give their money to Wall Street. It's like they had a race horse worth $100.00, but they kept selling shares to more people for $10 each, and pretty soon people all over the country claimed that they owned $10 worth of a certain race horse. Eventually there was $1.0 million invested in the horse, but the horse was only worth $100.00.
Finally, people caught on to the con and began to try to get their money out of Wall Street. The word spread, panic ensued, and the entire con collapsed, taking down with it the entire economy of the U.S. and eventually of the entire world.
There is certainly a good argument that the criminals on Wall Street who defrauded the public in 1929 created the conditions of widespread poverty, despair and conflict that eventually led to World War II, and the deaths of 100 million people. There are consequences to the organized crime and theft of Wall Street. Millions of people die because of what Wall Street does best: defraud people and steal money.
There were some laws passed after the 1929 crash, to control and regulate the banks (some people called them the Banksters, like the Gangsters), to control and regulate Wall Street, to try to stop them from pulling these cons again. But many of those laws were eliminated under the regime of Ronald Reagan, and many of them were eliminated under the regime of that great Republican Bill Clinton. And because the laws were eliminated, the criminals on Wall Street went back and did the exact same thing again: stole money from almost everyone in the entire world. So now we have widespread despair, suffering, conflict, hunger, war, unemployment, homelessness. Will we have another world war? Will 100 million more people have to die because of the criminals on Wall Street? Why won't our politicians, like the attorney general, stop these people, put them in prison, seize their assets, and stop this disaster.
(Fascism arose during the 1930s. Many argue it was the result of the conditions imposed after World War I. But there is a good argument that it arose because of the depression in Germany caused by the con men from the U.S. Wall Street stealing everyone's money. Would World War II Have Occurred If Wall Street Had Not Stolen The World's Money And Created An International Depression That Left Millions Homeless, Hungry, And Angry? Would Al Queda exist if the Western countries didn't keep stealing all the oil from, and oppressing and impoverishing the Muslim countries?)
Money doesn't disappear. Somebody takes it. The guy with the race horse, for example. He may declare bankruptcy and auction off the horse, all the investors get cents on the dollar. But that $1.0 million that he originally raised -- he put it into his own pocket. The money didn't disappear. It just was taken from average people and stolen by the con man. The same is true for the tech stock con in the late 1990s. Some guy opened a business which had sales of $100,000, but they did phony projections that they would have sales of $100 Million within 5 years, and sold stock based on those silly projections. Who sold the stock? Wall Street did. Who created the projections? Wall Street advisers. Who got the money? Wall Street takes a percentage, the business owner gets most of it. Then one day somebody realizes the business has no sales, or sales have not increased, people want their money back, business files for bankruptcy. Same result.
Real estate: here's how it works. The higher the interest rate, the lower the sales price of homes. People's ability to buy a home is measured by the monthly payment. If interest is 5%/year, say $500 per $100,000 of loan, a person can borrow $300,000 and pay $1500/month. So if interest is dropped to 2.5%/year, they can borrow $600,000, and still just pay $1500/month. So Greenspan artificially held down the interest rates so the price of real estate skyrocketed. People who owned homes didn't notice so much that their paychecks were otherwise frozen, they were losing medical and pension and job security.
The banks loved it, the Wall Street banks, because they got to make jumbo loans to gas station attendants because everybody bought a half-million dollar home. Then Wall Street made phony packages of the loans and sold off fractional interests (like selling off a piece of a race horse), raised a ton more money than the loans were worth, and eventually the whole thing collapsed. Wall Street got all their money. The home buyers end up losing their homes, which drop in value by 40% as soon as the con ends. People who bought fractional interests of the loans lost. But Wall Street made a fortune. And kicked back a percentage to the politicians to avoid imprisonment.
Here we are again, 80 years later, and the same types of criminals are running Wall Street, running the same cons and pyramids and scams, with the same result. Most people have lost a bundle, the world is in a depression, the rich got away with stealing hundreds of billions of dollars, and everyone else suffers. 2% of the people in the world own 50% of the assets and wealth of the world. http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2007/01/352279.shtml Do you know why every decade fewer people own more of the wealth, and more and more people have nothing? Because the rich people steal everything, lie about it, kill anyone who gets in their way, and bribe the politicians to stay out of prison.
The diamond mines of Africa, for example, are "owned" by a few white Europeans whose ancestors murdered the Africans and stole the mine claims. Don't buy diamonds, don't wear diamonds, and if you own any diamonds, get rid of them. The simple answer, of course, is to take the assets and wealth away from those few people who stole it in the first place, and redistribute it to the people of the world.
It's not as bad today in the U.S. as it was in 1929. Yet. But we don't know whether we'll get there. And it seems that conditions are worse in the rest of the world. Or at least the reports of One Billion People starving because of this economic depression seems dire.
The question is this: why even allow an organization like Wall Street to exist? Who benefits from an international gambling casino, other than the racketeers who run the tables? Who benefits from having a slick mob that can put together packages of financing and sell them to the public based on usually fraudulent representations?
How about this for an idea: if somebody wants to buy stock in a business, let them buy into a local business. End Wall Street. Shut it down. No more national lenders, no more international lenders, no more chopping up packages of mortgages and deeds of trust and re-selling fractional interests. End it all.
There is nothing good that has come out of Wall Street. A very few people use their insider position to steal from everyone else. For the rest of us, we get nothing.
For example, did you read that the credit card companies are going to start charging a fee for anyone who pays on time? How can they possibly get away with fining people for paying their bills? Here's how: Wall Street. Wall Street, where all the money is under the control of a few people, has put most banks out of business, and left only a few financial institutions that have credit cards. If there are only 2 credit card companies in the country, a monopoly control, they can do whatever they want. They can charge $100/month as a "billing" fee if they want, and nobody can stop them because there are no other options available. And most people need to borrow money, which is all a credit card is, because they aren't making enough to get by.
So I would suggest we shut down Wall Street, break up every financial institution, institute a tax of 90% for all income or gain over $250,000 (the Disney CEO was paid $51 Million in 2008 -- let's tax it and put an end to this obscenity - http://concentrationofwealth.blogspot.com/ ), and put these criminal cartels out of business.
Either that or let them continue to make suckers out of us, steal our money, loot our treasury, and set up the conditions for neverending suffering and war throughout the world. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1930