Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Wealth, Not of The Nations, but of the Few: No National Boundaries Necessary

There is a particularly strong moment in the film A Beautiful Mind directed by Ron Howard and starring Russell Crowe when John Nash disputes a theory by Adam Smith to his buddies in a bar. The friends look at a blonde and each thinks of asking her out. It is when his buds are leering at the blonde that Nash gets the revelation. Rephrased, Smith's theory translates as, "In following his own interests, an individual benefits others in the society." In the film it is stated: "In competition, individual ambition serves the common good."

Then in the film Russell Crowe/John Nash after his lightening strike epiphany comes up with an improvement on Adam Smith. It would be better for the group of them if they settle for  less prettier girls, all rejecting the blonde. Crowe/Nash proclaims his new theory:  "The best result comes from everyone in the group doing what's best for himself, and the group." Of course, that simplistically precludes each in the group knows what the other is thinking, desiring and planning and all the players are not hostile to each other and filled with great good will, making the blonde (the desired effect) the hostile entity, so to speak.

The scene is a simplistic convention in the film's plot designed to make one feel good about John Nash and his Nobel Prize for Equilibrium which could not be explained facilely in the film. A documentary about Nash and his work would have been appropriate for that and I do understand that the object of the film was to entertain, foremost, tweak parts the average viewer could be drawn to and also inform and inspire us about Nash's incredible human journey through schizophrenia and out the other side, without putting us to bed with every specific wrinkle in Nash's clothing in the process.

But what I find utterly romantic about Nash's theory is in establishing, under certain circumstances, an equilibrium. A solution to a game in which every player chooses his best strategy given the strategy chosen by every other player (under certain circumstances). And it is how to achieve this equilibrium that really makes this a Nobel Prize winning "Nash Equilibrium."

Just imagine that those brokerage firms, hedge funds, mortgage brokers, investment banks, mega short sellers could have sat down and chosen their best strategy, given the strategy chosen by every other player; and make sure to also include at the table, a few human rights organizations from Third World Countries, Mohammad Yunus, former head of Grameen Bank, the government economic advisers from Greece, Italy, Ireland, Switzerland, Germany, Sweden and Norway and a few watchdog groups with clout who are not beholden to any financial institution or government entity; and I don't mean the former Mr. Cox of the SEC who was IN LIKE FLINT and appeared to be asleep at the switch as the financial domino effect collapsed around the world and made A PROPORTIONATELY FEW incredibly rich, indeed, so rich I cannot begin to fathom it and neither can anyone else. But there it is! And to date, NO ONE HAS GONE TO JAIL for bilking the American Taxpayer 1)while subsidizing Goldman Sachs and AIG with bailouts for their venury, 2)through lost interest revenue from barely solvent banks, 3)through shrinking the value of the dollar-a form of inflation 4) through a poorly organized, bank enriching HAMP program to deal with foreclosures {It doesn't.}5)through ballooning the national debt to infinity, and 6) essentially doing little to stem the downward spiral of depreciated housing values-which will continue until a few decades hence).

 Just imagine a meet and greet between the above players.  Ha, ha, ha. There was a meet and greet; it was collusion and Nash's equilibrium was present. But all the representatives mentioned above and those who warned for years that the handwriting of doom was on the wall if Greenspan would be allowed to continue his Ayn Rand philosophy of economics were not present. Only the ones WHO MATTERED were there. And we'll never know. But sure as bears eat berries and sharks swim the Atlantic, these folks weren't suffering from starvation. They might not have even been American. Certainly, they were globalists, without allegiance to any country, beyond borders, beyond the RULE OF LAW of any nation and beyond international law.

Just call me Puddin'head Wilma. It's a really silly guess and I have no proof. Maybe some day I'll know something beyond what I read in The Big Short by Michel Lewis and All the Devils Are Here by Bethany McClean and Joe Nocea and online sites about The Council of 300 and other such balderdashy cabals of elites who are "Masters of the Universe."

But for now, I don't no nuttin'  And in comparison to the few gazillionaires who benefited from the GREAT HEAVENLY TRIUMPH OF RICHES AND BRILLIANCE OVER THE LUCKLESS HUNDRED MILLION ESTUPIDOS, I am an estupido to even imagine such a scenario (above) or hummm, jail term for any of these anointed Puritans of wealth. (The Puritans of America believed that hard work and riches were a sign of holiness and God's divine blessing. Poverty was a curse; if you didn't work, you didn't eat.) I guess their getting away with financially "murdering" the world's economic systems (resulting in not a few curtailed lives) is just a function of Nash' equilibrium and a dash of Puritanism on the side.

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