Karl Marx had an economic theory which forced tyranny and misery on a billion people for a hundred years. Alisa Zinov'yevna Rosenbaum, (aka Ayn Rand) wrote a wooden novel about an economic fantasy to which thousands of (mostly rich) people glom onto to justify avariciousness and greed.
America has its own store of economics miracles:
“Diamond” Jim Fisk, from pushcart peddler to Wall Street broker.
John D, Rockefeller, son of a snake oil salesman to the world’s richest man.
Ray Kroc, from one restaurant to the world’s largest chain (I couldn’t resist trying a MacDonald's hamburger in Moscow.)
But these days, unless you’re a computer genius or went to Harvard, the economic divide is an abyss, and no one truly understands why. Since 1901, there have been 549 Nobel prizes in economic sciences. Each laureate spent a lifetime amassing data and trying to make sense of it. Nevertheless, we still know so little about economics it is called, “the dismal science.”
I once asked the Chief Financial Officer of a high tech software company why any corporation buys up its own stock.
“It makes the outstanding shares more valuable.”
“But if a company buys all of its shares, who owns the company?”
He couldn’t give me a clear answer. Yet this ordinary business practice is simple compared to bizarre stuff like leveraged buyouts, collateralized debt obligations, and credit default swaps. Which is why I tend to doubt it when Mitt Romney says blithely, “I’m a business man, so I know how the economy works.”
If Romney becomes the Republican contender for the Presidency, as most people think he will, his money-making run with Bain Capital will get a good going over. And people will ask if a man who figured out how to make millions by buying and selling companies in trouble, understands the economy, or merely figured out a way to squeeze it (like Al Capone used the 18th amendment) and line his pockets). The coming Romney run for President is sure to kick off the best economics lessons the American people have ever had.
There once was a Romney named Mitt
In the Oval Office he wanted to sit.
But his antics at Bain
Collapsed his campaign
Just a silly old wannabe twit.