Greed is fine.
Greed is fine. It's stupidity that hurts This is the title of an article by Steven Pearlstein in the Sunday Times this morning. I find the article of particular relevance to what can happen to us in the mirror of Wall Street. Read the article by substituting the words 'Wall Street' with the word 'paradise' and the similarity is remarkable. ...The big problem with 'paradise' isn't that it's greedy....the masters of finance start our with reasonably good products and good intentions, only to get swept away by their success. They become arrogant, take too many risks and begin to believe their own marketing spiels. Then, when the cycle turns against them and the risks turn sour, they try to cover everything up and begin lying to their customers, to regulators and to each other.Trust erodes, and the whole thing collapses. In the populist 'greed' fantasy, it is ordinary people who are the losers while the 'paradise' big wigs walk off with all the loot. Where is greed in paradise? You find there everywhere. The landlords just keep raising their rentals. The market can afford it. It is free market at works. Who pays? The property prices are at high heavens. Not the cost was running to heaven. It is the add ons called profits. How much profits depends on how the market is willing to pay. And who pays? If a HDB flat is built on a $50k construction cost, plus $50k land cost plus $50k technical cost, should it be sold at $500k or $600k? Why not $300K? Why should someone pay $500k to die in a world class hospital when he could die free at home? Why should a few medical checks or trials and a few visits by a consultant be $20k when the cost of equipment used and medicine, plus staff attendance may be less than a couple of thousands? Is it that being world class, everything must be paid world class prices? Don't forget that 90% of the people are not world class and many are just trying to make ends meet.