November 11th, 2011 - Posted by Big Al
I'm a little miffed that not one of these "Occupy" movements has mentioned me. You know what I'm talking about, the tens of hundreds of protesters who have camped out near Wall Street in New York and other financial centers these past several weeks. The protesters are speaking out against what they call corporate greed, and what I call a reason to get up in the morning. Like yesterday, I lent one company, I think it was called Andrews, $280 Million at 18% interest—a legitimate transaction. You'd think the protesters would say something about me, they've got plenty to say about big banks and brokerage houses.
Now don't get me wrong, it's not that I don't have heart. I have plenty of heart. But I also know what makes the world go 'round, and believe me, a worldwide liquidity freeze is not conducive to eating. In my view, the governments and banks studied the root of the Great Depression of the 1930s. You know the one with 25% unemployment and breadlines around the equator. Nobody wanted that to happen again, at least nobody who wanted to get re-elected. So, instead of turning off the money spigot the way they did in the 1930s, they turned it on, way on. And where is that money going to flow? Through the banks, of course. That's their (and my) business. Did they want the money to flow through, say, a national chain of donut shops? No—they make donuts, they don't make loans to Main Street. Banks do. So what's the big problem?
Now the protesters have many different messages, but they all come back to money. Who has it, who doesn't, who is allegedly buying influence, who is allegedly influenced by it. All this discussion is good. And the politicians are sure to listen. But in my view at some point the protests distill down to nothing but—Whining!!! I'm trying to be helpful here. If as they say they represent the 99% who have less money than the one percent, then they should stop alienating the 99.99% of the 99% they say they represent.
They should stop pointing fingers at big business (except they can point at me if and when they come to their senses) and start spending more time on solutions. One thing I completely agree with is their position on our energy needs and security. I get shivers thinking about what would happen if the oil spigot got turned off-I've got a fleet of limousines to gas up, and premium isn't cheap.
So to paraphrase Franklin Deleno Roosevelt, how 'bout a windmill on top of every garage? Remember the go go 1990s? In my view, it all came down to $10 a barrel oil. Everything else followed. Well the days of cheap oil are gone forever. Does that mean there will be no more cheap energy? There are lots of ways to get cheap, safe energy into the grid. There's lots of ways to produce ethanol, ever hear of switchgrass? It grows twenty feet tall.
So my advice to the Occupy Movement, stop ranting, go home, plant some switchgrass, install a windmill, lead by example. But before you go, don't forget to bad mouth me, I'm feeling a little disrespected here...
Big Al is the Capsim lender of last resort. When Capsim companies run out of money, Big Al arrives, with a checkbook and a smile, to write a check that covers the shortfall - at above market interest, of course!