Co-Sponsored by Financial Policy Council – Global Financial Summit 2016
The Global Financial Summit is an exclusive investment conference that brings together an all-star cast of financial gurus, economic forecasters and geo-political analysts. They will offer an experienced perspective on wealth-building, offshore investing opportunities, financial privacy, investment strategies, the best investments to beat the market, and techniques to avoid treacherous bear markets. Featuring some of the biggest names and most insightful advisers in the investment world,
Little children are randomly slaughtered in their schoolrooms. Predator drones roam the skies over foreign countries exterminating bad guys, along with innocent women and children (collateral damage when it occurs in a foreign country). Drugged up mentally ill kids with no hope and no future live lives of secluded quiet desperation until they snap. Ignorant, government educated, welfare dependent drones with no self respect or respect for others, assault, kill and rob within their government created urban ghettoes. Sociopaths who committed the largest financial crime in world history walk free and continue to occupy executive suites in luxury office towers in downtown NYC, collecting millions in bonuses as compensation for crushing the American middle class. Academics, whose theories have been thoroughly disproven, continue to steer our economy into an iceberg while accelerating the money printing and debt issuance that will sink our ship of state. Corrupt, bought off politicians pander to the lowest common denominator as their votes are only dependent upon who contributed the most to their election campaigns, which never end.
Delusional, materialistic, narcissistic, math challenged consumers (formerly known as citizens – live for today, enslave themselves in debt, vote themselves more entitlements, and care not for future generations.
Remember the infamous quote of villain financier Gordon Gekko in the movie Wall Street…back in 1987?
“I am not a destroyer of companies. I am a liberator of them! The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed–for lack of a better word–is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms–greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge–has marked the upward surge of mankind. And greed–you mark my words–will not only save Teldar Paper, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA”.
So what do you make of it? Is greed good?
I guess as with any question like this, we need to start with the word “good.”
It is a fault of our language that “good” is most often used in an unqualified way. This is a symptom of our natural preference for dualistic thought. So what does unqualified ‘good’ mean?
Basic honesty is a must. A person must be able and willing to tell the truth. Moreover, they must tell it quickly, uncompromisingly and fully. A simple question must elicit a simple answer. Any defensiveness, any protestations of the question you ask, should raise a red flag and get you ready to pull the chute on the proverbial parachute. A simple question should never result in a crooked answer, and such an answer is an indication that you may even be dealing with a crook. In any event, your life should not be about tolerating excuses.
The prospect of supporting someone, through investments, loans or your patronage, who does not reciprocate the respect you show them or which is customarily in a civilized society should be appalling, even infuriating, to you. In fact, your own business and reputation virtually requires you to dissociate from anyone acting in this manner. Worse, in a world where people are increasingly suspicious and afraid of being unable to detect a good salesman from a fraud, the temptation is to “pull the trigger” quickly on anyone with a dent and misjudge or prejudge people based on nothing but their company.
Some people criticize the injection of politics into economic discussions. But economic historians tell us that economists used to understand and accept that economics is wholly interrelated with politics, and that politics affects our economy. They note that modern economists have artificially tried to somehow separate the two, like Descartes tried to separate the mind from the body. Indeed, the father of modern economics – Adam Smith – talked a lot about politics in relation to economics.
If mainstream (“neoclassical”) economists think that politics is an irrelevant and separate topic, it may be because they are using wholly discredited models or that “it is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”
It is amazing the number of people I meet on a daily basis who have all kinds of knowledge stored in their brains but still have not figured out yet how to convert all this knowledge into money.
Can this be achieved? … Well, here are my personal thoughts.
1. Knowledge does not convert into money. Knowledge is the multiplier for work. Work converts into money. It is only challenging to say the least to convert knowledge into money if one is not willing to put any work to support their knowledge with. So for all the day dreamers out there, it all starts with “smart work”.
2. Work is not translated into dollars until you find people willing to embrace your product or service. In other words, unless you have knowledge that others 1) need in its raw form, 2) cannot acquire on their own, and 3) are willing to pay for, then knowledge by itself is just potential. Like a car with no gas. Combine knowledge with the energy/effort needed to apply it to a purpose, you might get somewhere.
3. Stop thinking and start doing. Most people would rather talk and not perform any actual work. They’re thinkers, not doers. Or, it could be that they are scared to fail, or find out that their knowledge isn’t all that unique or important. Start executing and lose the fear.
This nation was founded on the principle of wealth creation. As a young Henry Clay said in the House of Representatives in 1812, “It [wealth creation] is a passion as unconquerable as any with which nature has endowed us.
You may attempt to regulate—you cannot destroy it.” That is supposed to be the federal government’s primary objective. It is supposed to promote the creation of an environment conducive to the creation of wealth—not job creation, not bailouts, not subsidies, not expansion of the federal bureaucracy, and not providing lifetime support to those who choose not to take advantage of the innumerable opportunities that exist in this nation for them to create a better, more productive life for themselves.
If we can turn around the tide at the next Presidential elections, I believe there is a very bright future ahead of us. If not, I am afraid we are in for an even bumpier road.
Ziad K Abdelnour serves on the board of TMax Capital, an investment management and specialty finance group that focuses on commodities secularization, proprietary structured products based on debt and assets, private equity placements, asset management, and other financial ventures that create synergistic value for its partners and portfolio companies
He is also member of the advisory board of DPG Investments, a recognized premier multistrategy global merchant banking, alternative investment, management, and advisory firm; and FlatWorld Capital, a global private equity investment firm led by a team of dynamic investment professionals and entrepreneurs with over seven decades of experience in finding and structuring innovative and creative solutions to the challenges of global private equity investing.
Ziad K Abdelnour is a regular panelist and speaker on private equity and venture capital topics at industry conferences nationwide.