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"The Inmates Donít Know Itís An Asylum"
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"The Inmates Donít Know Itís An Asylum"

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"The Inmates Donít Know Itís An Asylum"

From Bill Buckler's latest edition of The Privateer




The Inmates Donít Know Itís An Asylum



There is a line from Ayn Randís The Fountainhead which we have always enjoyed. It is stated by the main villain of the story - Ellsworth Toohey - in a one-sided conversation in which he is explaining that he was always after political power and never hid his ambitions but nobody wanted to ďbelieve itĒ. The quote goes like this: ďNever bother to examine a folly. Ask yourself only what it accomplishes.Ē



Lenin had a different take on the same problem faced by all would be power mongers. He knew he had to be reasonably obvious in what he told the people about his plans and goals. But not too obvious. He knew he had to tailor his pitch so that it would have the maximum amount of resonance with the maximum number of unthinking people. He doted on such people. He called them ďuseful idiotsĒ.



Today, the ďmovers and shakersĒ of the financial world abound in such useful idiots. It has been a long road from the 1930s Keynesian mantra that ďwe owe it to ourselvesĒ to todayís masters of the universe with their incomprehensible computer ďalgorithmsĒ fuelled by the ability of modern computers to crunch almost unlimited sequences of ď1sĒ and ď0sĒ. The entire road has been paved with one goal in mind. To convince the ďpeopleĒ that the only road to financial ďsafetyĒ is to give up their thinking processes and ďdelegateĒ them to those who claim to know what they are doing.



The problem today is that the results of this delegation are so obvious that the methods of those who produced them are beginning to be questioned. It has been a long time coming. When we reach a market situation where nobody wants to play unless the game is terminally rigged, then the whole idea of ďmarketsĒ has gone by the boards. Nobody wants to ďpuntĒ unless their bets are guaranteed in advance. Thatís no way to run a horse race - or a global financial system.

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