The US Today: What Happens When You Let Investment Bankers Run a Country

Phoenix Capital Research's picture

If you’re
like me, you’ve probably looked at the US recently and wondered what has
happened to your country. I’m not talking about the GOP/ Obama situation nor am
I referring to capitalism vs. socialism…


I’m simply
talking about basic common sense items like: stay out of debt, don’t do
anything if it doesn’t make sense, do you homework before signing a contract,


Indeed, the
American government (I’m including the Federal Reserve in this category) began
charting a strange course as a country when the Financial Crisis first
accelerated with Bear Stearns’ collapse in February ‘08.


Granted we’d
flirted with government intervention several times before (Chrysler in the
‘70s, Long-Term Capital Management, etc.). But we’ve since taken it to a whole
new level. The basic risk of capitalism (failure) has been removed from the
equation for most major US businesses. However, this risk was removed at the
expense of increasing the US’s debt load and putting the dollar at risk.


Pushing to
remove risks so you can pursue insane business practices? Crazy deals that
offer little benefit to the parties? Doing things quickly without actually
considering the consequences?


Sounds a lot
like investment banking doesn’t it?


banking as an industry runs almost completely contrary to wealth creation since
it thrives on fees rather that capital appreciation. Investment banking
is about making DEALS (any deals) regardless of whether the deals make sense or
benefit both parties (after all, the advisors to the deals, the investment
bankers, get paid based on commission and free stock).


investment banking is one of the few industries on the planet in which you can
get rich by creating debt for others to pay off. Goldman Sachs, as you know, is
an investment bank. And this financial crisis is riddled with former Goldman
Sachs and other Wall Street execs.


Indeed, you
can see the “investment banking” stamp everywhere.  Consider the major deals the Feds have created and consider
the actual benefit they offer to the parties involved:


§  Bear
Stearns/ JP Morgan

§  The
US taxpayer/ Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

§  The
US taxpayer/ AIG (and all of its counterparties)

§  Merrill
Lynch/ Bank of America


All of these
deals were terrible. All of them were rushed through. And all of them were
allowed because of lax regulation/ poor analysis. To this day no one in the
mainstream media seems to have adequately analyzed these deals in a way that
includes actual numbers. Instead we get dopey adages like “it’s about stemming
the tide,” it’s important to “stop the bleeding,” “it’s about saving the


You can also
see the “investment banking” stamp on the Federal Reserve.  Three years ago give or take, the Fed balance
sheet was just  $800 billion worth
of Treasuries. Today, its balance sheet contains $2.5+ trillion worth of
assets, and with only $53 billion in capital, the Fed is leveraged at 47 to


Tons of junk
assets that aren’t properly valued? Refusal to reveal the real worth of your
balance sheet? Leveraged to the hilt?


Sounds like
investment banking!


To me this
financial crisis is nowhere near over for one simple reason: we continue to
perpetuate the VERY same business practices that created it in the first place.
It’s like a junkie getting clean by continuing to use dope. In the US
government’s case, it’s just that the junkie has super clever explanations and
jargon to explain why this is a good idea. The reality is that it’s not. And
it’s going to end very, very badly.


Be Safe,




PS. If
you’re getting worried about the future of the stock market and have yet to
take steps to prepare for the Second Round of the Financial Crisis… I highly
suggest you download my FREE Special Report specifying exactly how to prepare
for what’s to come.


I call it The Financial Crisis “Round Two” Survival
. And its 17 pages contain a wealth of information about portfolio
protection, which investments to own and how to take out Catastrophe Insurance
on the stock market (this “insurance” paid out triple digit gains in the Autumn
of 2008).


Again, this
is all 100% FREE. To pick up your copy today, got to
and click on FREE REPORTS.


publish a FREE Special Report on Inflation detailing three investments that
have all already SOARED as a result of the Fed’s monetary policy.

You can
access this Report at the link above.






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Bitch Tits's picture

FEARLESS, bitchez!

My first "bitchez". Thank you for the indulgence.

geno-econ's picture

Zloty said a mouthful from a country plundered by East and West over the centuries as the US has been plundered by politicians and bankers. Result is same---denial , hubris and pain of the masses.  Velicaya Polshsha ! 

falak pema's picture

great words of wisdom...don't speculate...don't join the bubble brigade...Stay clean, stay lean, stay mean to those who cheat and say openly, brazenly, like they own it all : 'it's our crappy money but your crappy problem'...

SparkyvonBellagio's picture

JUST STOP BUYING/CONSUMING except for food/clothing/medicines.


Send a message.




LawsofPhysics's picture

Great idea, but look at your paycheck deductions.  How many of those items do you really think you can stop payment on?  Constitutionally you should be able to stop all of them.  Go to your HR person and try to and let us all know how that works out.  My employees have no control, this is the impact of the "rules" I have to follow to stay in business.

snowball777's picture

I'd like to eliminate my 401k contribution and change my withholding declaration, please. They may fuss, but you'll get what you request.

The trend is your friend's picture

That's the only resolve i see as well.  If you and i stopped buying everything except the pure basics, all this shit ends.  That is the only true power we have left.  If we do this for 2 quarters we take our country back.  Corporations will suffer and fix things from within and tell the Investments to go #uck themselves.


One can only dream 

zloty owadow's picture

I went to a gathering of gardeners this weekend. One grizzled old fellow gave a seminar on how to raise crops in order to grow and store seeds (which is slightly different from growing only for food). He started out by saying something about how we aren't going to be getting any more food from the US since the US is about to collapse. I asked him after his talk why he said this, wondering if he had some Internet sites to recommend as I thought it was surprising to hear this stated so matter-of-factly by someone who spends zero time reading financial sites. He said he just watches the news, sees what's going on and draws his own conclusions. 


Why is it that it's so difficult for citizens in the US to come to this conclusion? 

Bitch Tits's picture

My thieving former partner said, "anything will be believed if you say it often enough. People never take the time to check the facts."

People are very susceptible. They don't even understand or recognize that they make the world exactly what it is to them.

geno-econ's picture

More wondering regarding investment bankers and Hedge Funds---which are more regulated ? Do both overcompensate top barons? Which are more corrupt with insider trading , history of collapse, audit fraud etc. Which are more complicit in credit risk taking endangering overall economy. I keep wondering about our entire financial system and resulting values 

geno-econ's picture

Hi Leo, What is difference between investment bankers and Hedge Funds. Can one live without the other? Is one smarter then the other? Can you trust either or are they both leading us in the wrong direction? Just wondering

snowball777's picture

The only difference is the type of host organism.

SparkyvonBellagio's picture

Looks like we're all going back to the Dark Ages.



apberusdisvet's picture

Pitchfork time getting closer folks

snowball777's picture

Bring back the pillory! And drawing and quartering!

Leo Kolivakis's picture

What happens when you let investment bankers run the country? They carve it out in pieces, leverage it up 1000x, and sell it to the highest bidders (biggest suckers). When that stops working, they end up cannibalizing each other.

Zero Govt's picture

and what happens to Govt regulated industries?

are they better than free markets or far, far worse from every single angle?

GOSPLAN HERO's picture

Silver is hot, comrades!

falak pema's picture

Right, in nature, but in civilization?

firstdivision's picture

It is unfortunate that moral hazard has become the norm instead of the exception.  There is definitely a sense that there is no risk to anyone that works at an IB or IBD.  We still see hedge funds shutting down left and right due to the irrationality of the markets, and are causing strategies that have been true for long periods of time to fall flat.  This is truly getting out of hand at this point, and we are destined to have another massive collapse in the next couple of years.  I have yet to figure out how propping up Wall Street is what will save us from the destruction that the same banks have caused.  As a whole, this country has lost what the true meaning of investment and growth is about.  We sold our souls to kill organic growth, and prosper off of unsustainability. 

blindfaith's picture

Hey 'firstdivision' you, if you are in the military, may be our only hope.

Criminals roam freely in fancy clothes, and outfit their homes with blood money.  They have begun to destroy our Republic's foundation, they have stolen the wealth of the people, they have installed their own goons into the government from the top to the bottom in every department of government in every part of all agencies.

We send 'our military' to other nations to stop such horrors.  We are blinded by our own goon supported media, to the fact that the plague is here too.  Like Egypt, our destiny is in the hands of the  US military.  Men and women who are from middle class and poor homes recruited to go protect American business interests abroad, while at home business, the same middle class and poor families are by one.  Military leaders, some are from elite families but they have a different point of perspective than that which from ' on high " in some wall street castle.

It is the US Military that will untlimately change the currrent course.  There will be no choice.   

When they see that the very same financial  and corrupt enemy that we write of here on ZH is also a threat to them, they will act.  The clock is ticking, and the money from the middle class and poor does not exist anymore to support anything, and the rich elites now pay nothing.

The thieves who have gone on this course to destroy America, it's wealth, it's soul, it's honor, it's spirit, will never find a safe place in this world to hide, live, or breath, that this military will not find them and return America's wealth and pride and honor back home again.


No matter what anyone writes on ZH, this is the only real answer anymore.  God willing, the US Military is the only real friend Americans have.

pvzh's picture

God willing, the US Military is the only real friend Americans have

Which is pretty much what tsar Alexander III said: "Russia has only two allies her Army and Navy". This is so true for any country. God forbid think otherwise because then you will have "1917", and all that stems from it.

falak pema's picture

Capitalism as practiced in the land that venerates it to the point of making it religion has just hit a brick wall since 2008. Wake up Zerogovt. It's now become a value destruction instrument in society not a value creation instrument. Bubble economy not business cycle economy. And I'm not including into this analysis of factual evidence the upcoming grey area of limited resources, surging world population and climate change. A recent report by Nature says direct correlation between global warming and excessive rain formation. SO what is the new capitalistic paradigm thats allows sustainable growth in this new reality?

Or do you feel that the principal characteristic of the human race is social darwinism and therefore it'll always be : may the devil take the hindmost! 

Zero Govt's picture


i can only assume you're a student or fresh out because the garbage between your ears can only come from the dross taught in State education and the crap ideology students chat about outside class. Very briefly here's how the world works;

- wealth is created in the private sector (agriculture, industry and energy)

- all other parts of the economy (services, tourism, banking, transport, Govt etc) process or consume that wealth

So regards your idealism about "capitalism becoming a wealth destruction instrument" you are of course referring to the parasite, Govt, that is consuming ever larger slices of the wealth created in the private sector. Govt is the "wealth destroyer" you speak of.

And if you want to see Govts wealth destruction look at any economy where the State mangles in the free market. You could check out the results in the USSR, Eastern Europe, Cuba, North Korea and China when it went bankrupt back in the 70's. Or close to home check out your totally bankrupt US healthcare system, education system or the tragic mess the US Govt and its quangos has made of your property sector.

Wealth destruction by Govt leading to bankruptcy is totally predictable although your Marxist economics teacher told you the opposite no doubt!  



RockyRacoon's picture

I have noticed that you rarely agree with anyone.  The majority of your comments are based on refutation of any point, minor or otherwise, that another has made.

Zero Govt's picture

most of the time what kicks off a debate is disagreement. Have you noticed that?

A debate requires Ying and Yang, two apposing forces, have you noticed that?

When people agree they turn into nodding donkeys and the conversation moves to another topic. Have you noticed that?

So the conversations that lasts longest are those with apposing forces. This is why you may have noticed most of my posts are in disagreement with others, because where i agree we usually agree quickly and move on. Have you noticed that? 

DOT's picture

It is not the car but it's driver that must have intelligence.

snowball777's picture

How intelligent must the driver be if the car's windows have been painted over black.

RockyRacoon's picture

...ultimately leading to a Crack Up Boom.

johnQpublic's picture

in nature, darwinism, social or otherwise rules the day


in nature there is no right or wrong, only survival

LawsofPhysics's picture

As it shall be again soon enough, the world over.


Hedge accordingly.

Zero Govt's picture

Can we get our labelling right please... there is no such thing as a "Capitalist v Socialist" economy... wether you are a socialist, communist, fascist or free marketeer ALL 4 economies are capitalist, like it or not.

Capitalism is the rules of the economic game (productivity, efficiency, wealth creation). Those rules apply wether you run a socialist or free market or any other system. And if you piss over the rules of capitalism (see USSR, North Korea, Cuba, Europe, USA) and fuk with the rules of being productive then capitalisms greatest character, The Grim Reaper, will slice and dice you for thinking the rules of capitalism don't apply to you in a grave called a bankrupt economy. 

Be you socialist, communist or fascist you cannot run, cheat or hide from Capitalism as every deluded egoist in history has found out

topcallingtroll's picture

When you attempt to remove risk of failure for a component of a system you cause systemic risk. Sorta like trying to prevent all forest fires and letting the tinder build up until you finally have that big one.

SparkyvonBellagio's picture

Tie up every banker and politician.

Prop open their mouths.

Everyone simply Take a Shit into it.

Then that's 1% payback for what they're done to this formerly fine country.

The Bankers and pawnZee Politicians have shit on everyone who has ever fought and/or died for this country.

They've Shit on the 99.9% of the U.S. Citizens and their futures.


It's time for a bit of Payback. 

Open wide Mother Pfhuckers!

CH1's picture

Well, perhaps, but the thrill of payback has a very short duration. We need to build parallel structures and start living outside of the game the banksters built.

Moe Howard's picture

My due diligence tells me to purchase more Ag, Au, & Pb while I still can.

CH1's picture

Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk... soytenly!

dick cheneys ghost's picture

$20 trillion in debt..............thanks wall street.

blindman's picture


"The US Today: What Happens When You Let Investment Bankers Run a Country"

you have recognized a fascist regime.

potential characteristics include extreme hypocrisy,

unpredictability, instability, irrationality and extreme

insanity accepted as normalcy.  linguistic comprehension

reduced to chaotic froth and or rendered useless.  all symbols

degenerating into oblivion, humanity commodified and financialized.

aka povert and doom.    spin replaces communication and all is

well.  put on the baby girl panties and shake, baby, shake.


Stone Street Advisors's picture

You need to understand the difference between the Principal and Agency business of Investment Banks.  If you don't/haven't, I suggest you read The Epicurean Dealmaker.  You'd make yourself sound more intelligent if you did...

KickIce's picture

Much of our present situation is due to the removal of consequences/risk for unethical behavior.

illyia's picture

That cannot be admitted to under any circumstances, or the game collapses.

Corruption bitches...

illyia's picture

Mixed with institutionalized corruption.

boeing747's picture

Welcome to Union States of Amerika

Jackfish's picture

"Tell him the good part, Mortimer."
"The good part is that no matter whether our clients make money, or lose money...
...Duke & Duke get the commissions."

"Well, what do you think, Valentine?"
"Sounds to me like you guys are a couple of bookies."

mtomato2's picture

Without question, one of the most erudite and prescient moments in American cinema.

Hang The Fed's picture

We are truly witnessing the destruction of our economy and, by extension, our society, all stemming from the mismanagement of abstract constructs by the sociopaths that populate our government and corporations.  

DavosSherman's picture

"I’m simply talking about basic common sense items like: stay out of debt, don’t do anything if it doesn’t make sense, do you homework before signing a contract, etc."