"The wealthy, not only by private fraud but also by common laws, do every day pluck and snatch away from the people some part of their daily living. Therefore, when I consider and weigh in my mind these commonwealths which nowadays do flourish, I perceive nothing but a certain conspiracy of rich men in procuring their own commodities under the name and authority of the commonwealth.

They invent and devise all means and crafts, first how to keep safely without fear of losing that which they have unjustly gathered together, and next how to hire and abuse the work and labor of the people for as little money and effort as possible."

Thomas More, Utopia

Thursday, March 12, 2009

How much for that drink?

What follows is courtesy of "Angela", a commenter at Elaine Supkis' blog which presents the current economic crisis in a refreshing new way:

Thank goodness there’s the occasional humor in all of this- making the rounds on the net…


· Heidi is the proprietor of a bar in Berlin.
· In order to increase sales, she decides to allow her loyal customers - most of whom are unemployed alcoholics - to drink now but pay later.
· She keeps track of the drinks consumed on a ledger (thereby granting the customers loans).
· Word gets around, and as a result increasing numbers of customers flood Into Heidi’s bar.
· Taking advantage of her customers’ freedom from immediate payment constraints, Heidi increases her prices for wine and beer, the most-consumed beverages.
Her sales volume increases massively.
· A young and dynamic customer service consultant at the local bank recognizes these customer debts as valuable future assets and increases Heidi’s borrowing limit.
· He sees no reason for undue concern since he has the debts of the alcoholics as collateral.

· At the bank’s corporate headquarters, expert bankers transform these customer assets into DRINKBONDS, ALKBONDS and PUKEBONDS.
· These securities are then traded on markets worldwide.
· No one really understands what these abbreviations mean and how the securities are guaranteed.
· Nevertheless, as their prices continuously climb, the securities become top-selling items.

· One day, although the prices are still climbing, a risk manager (subsequently, of course, fired due to his negativity) of the bank decides that slowly the time has come to demand payment of the debts incurred by the drinkers at Heidi’s bar.
· However they cannot pay back the debts.
· Heidi cannot fulfill her loan obligations and claims bankruptcy. DRINKBOND and ALKBOND drop in price by 95%.
· PUKEBOND performs better, stabilizing in price after dropping by 80%.

· The suppliers of Heidi’s bar, having granted her generous payment due dates and having invested in the securities are faced with a new situation.
· Her wine supplier claims bankruptcy, her beer supplier is taken over by a competitor.
· The bank is saved by the government following dramatic round-the-clock consultations by leaders from the governing political parties.
· The funds required for this purpose are obtained by a tax levied on the non-drinkers.

· Finally, an explanation we understand.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...


The working man is screwed again. When will folks wake up? Maybe they do not wish to awaken.