Speaking of speculation and responsibility, they say Bernie Madoff will be in court tomorrow where he is expected to plead guilty to fraud and whatever else he has been charged with in his $50 billion ponzi scheme. Yes I call him Bernie like I know him because I think in a sense I do know him. He is like so many people just trying to make it big while doing as little as possible to get there. I mean look at all those people who were investing with him didn’t understand or didn’t care how he was supposedly making money for them. Did any of them stop and take the time to say that needed to figure out what was going on? No, just as long as they were getting their 12% on paper, they were as happy as faggots in Boystown. I myself am guilty of doing the same thing.
I remember a couple years ago and I heard that a friend of mine who works at Merrill Lynch was upset that his Christmas bonus was not going to be as big as he thought it should have been even though it was as large as my annual salary after taxes, and we do practically the same thing. I thought then and there that I had no idea how Merrill Lynch or any other investment firm made their money other than by commission sales of stock, but I was going get a piece of that action and turn much of what I had in my 401k into a mutual fund that bought and sold their stock. Needless to say, I’ve sort of lost about 20-30% of the value of the 401k when it was at its highest, but I still think there’s more there than what I actually put in so I’m not that upset. My mother on the other hand does get upset although she never shows it, and I’m not saying that only because I only see her about 3 times a year.
She was born and raised at time when even the worst of the things happening now couldn’t compare the norm of things when she was growing up. Even though she lost a few bucks when my father invested their retirement savings heavily just in time for Dotcom bubble to bust at the turn of the century and then having the inconvenience of a large tax bill coming in just as daddy decided to “shuffle off this mortal coil” and leave for the nether world; she has never shown much regret or distress over it. Perhaps it’s because of me. Perhaps it’s because I am the only man in her life and she knows I’ll be the one man who won’t screw her. And perhaps that true so she relys on me.
What I get upset about is that she will look to me for help so much without trying to think for herself, without getting the information that she needs for herself so she can decide what she needs to do for herself.
That would be no big deal if I was Warren Buffett and I was able to make good decisions without having to wait until my testicles tingled to feel good about them I would say "alright," I would take on that responsibility happily and without trepidation, but I’m not. I make mistakes for me that I’m fine with, but when those same mistakes or when bad advice is given and can harm the welfare of others I’m not.
Am I wrong for wanting people to be more responsible for their own lives and for their own actions? Or am I like others just frightened of being blamed for things that we really should have control over but don’t. Somehow this all just leaves me feeling naked and all alone and I’m not sure I like it.