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Thread: Has anyone ever wondered if the tarp program was a bad idea?

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  1. #1
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    Has anyone ever wondered if the tarp program was a bad idea?

    I believe the tarp program simply bought some time so that the economy would not crash until 2013 or 2014. Banks getting infusions of cash from us and no stipulations on the use of that cash. This article is a gem, from 2008.

    Where's the bank bailout money? - CNN.com

    And this quote is priceless, about JP Morgan Chase.

    "JPMorgan Chase pointed out that it recently bought more than $1 billion in Illinois bonds and plans to lend $5 billion to nonprofit and health care companies.

    "What the banks have said largely is that we're using the money to stimulate the economy, to get the economy moving," said Sarah Binder, a senior fellow at The Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank. "That's far, far too general to know what ... the banks are doing with the money."
    The vague responses from the banks should not come as a shock, said one U.S. House Financial Services Committee member who opposed the bailout.
    "One of the fundamental problems with the Wall Street bailout was the people who had caused the problem were never called in front of Congress to explain what they had done, what needed to be done," said Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, a Michigan Republican.
    Congress did not put conditions on the bailout money, leaving lawmakers to press the Treasury Department for transparency after the money was handed out."

    Anybody think that maybe JP Morgan Chase may have had a couple of bad investments? We did give the 25 Billion after all.

  2. #2

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    Seeing how Chase just lost 2 billion by a rogue trader, ya, it was probably a waste of money because it looks like they are doing the same crap again. Not only that, they have screwed the public big time. How many of you have had the interest rates on your credit cards increased for absolutely no reason?

    The problem when it was all happening was no one knew what would happen if they failed. Most likely we would have entered a hell of a global depression. There were over 500 trillion out in derivatives and that figure still growing. Who knows, but I do know those large banks will never get a penny from me as long as I can help it.

  3. #3
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    At the time the tarp program was meant to soften the crash. But it created a bunch of crackheads out of the crony capitalist banks. They keep needing a fix when they do something stupid and the whole time we go farther and farther into debt. Notice how the market goes up when the feds say they want to give more money? Or how it goes down when the fed does not signal it wants to give money?


    How long can this last? If they had failed it would have been bad, but if the gov. could have kept out of it we would be roaring back by now!

  4. #4
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    TARP was necessary. Why? Toxic assets!!! The mortgage collapse was so widespread and so complex it affected almost evey financial institution in this country. Bank CEOs claiming no exposure indeed had exposure. Many had 10s of billions of dollars of exposure as the CMO/CDO markets unraveled.

    The best way to explain what happened and why TARP was needed is in this way: Imagine you are called to a meeting with 100 other people. Your purpose in going to this meeting is to make personal contact with every person in the room. Your financial future depends on you shaking hands with every person in that room. However, just before stepping into the room you discover that at least one, possibly more of the people in the room have a deadly contagious disease that is spread by contact. How many hands are you going to shake? That answer would be zero!!!!

    And, that is what happened in 2008. As the triple A rated mortgage market collapsed it was taking banks from solvent to insolvent overnight. Banks are the largest owners of mortgage backed securities. Overnight, day by day, these secuities were losing value. Some were losing enough value to cause the holders of these securities to become insolvent.

    Banks borrow everyday to meet reserve and liquidity needs. Who do they borrow from? Other banks. But as the unraveling continued the banking system moved into crisis mode. Banks, fearing the deadly disease of lending to a bank that might be insolvent within the loan period, even if only days, refused to lend to each other. This froze the Commercial Paper markets. OK, so what, right? The largest companies in this country finance day to day cash flow via commercial paper. Without it, these companies were forced to rely on cash on hand. For most, that equaled days or weeks of operating money. After that, no way to pay employees, the light bill, or buy toilet paper. The largest companies in this country, from Apple to GE, from Home Depot to Lowes, from From McDonalds to Wal-Mart - all, at most, weeks from being insolvent and destroyed by the credit market meltdown.

    This was called a credit freeze. it then extended down line into the rest of the credit markets. Bonds stopped trading!!! Without the credit markets the American economy ceases to function at any level. That market is built on trust. Without trust there is no credit market. Without that, no economy. Everything stopped because that trust was gone. Remember, how many people are you going to shake hands with if shaking hands with only one could kill you? This is the position banks found themselves in, in September 2008.

    TARP was needed, not so much to fund the banks because few of the banks actually needed the money. TARP was needed to restore confidence in the credit markets. It assured bank A that if it lent money to bank B overnight that it would get its money back and not get dragged down if bank B went bust. And, that is the only reason for TARP.

    The reason for TARP is widely misunderstood as various groups have redefined its purpose to meet their agenda. Mostly that's political. The average person on the street has no idea how the mechanical financial apparatus that puts a paycheck in their hands works. But make no mistake, without TARP life as we know it would have been permenately changed for the worse. WE averted financial armagedon by days.

    If you doubt that, imagine going to the ATM today and not being able to get your cash out of the bank. Or, imagine not getting your paycheck, or finally, the bank taking your SS check. If these things happened on a mass scale, what would happen in this country? Mass hysteria, panic, bedlam? All the above with rioting in the streets, right? Without TARP we were one or two weeks, at best, from that scenerio.

    For a better understanding of TARP i highly recommend the book Too Big To Fail by Ross Sorkin. This book has been made into a movie as well. Another really good book about the collapse is The Big Short by Michael Lewis. More about the arrogance of Wall Street, as well as the American consumer, and how some saw what was coming and made billions by betting against the American economy.

    TARP, even with all its warts was needed.
    Last edited by Native Floridian; Jun 18, 2012 at 12:13 PM.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Native Floridian View Post
    TARP was necessary. Why? Toxic assets!!! The mortgage collapse was so widespread and so complex it affected almost evey financial institution in this country. Bank CEOs claiming no exposure indeed had exposure. Many had 10s of billions of dollars of exposure as the CMO/CDO markets unraveled.

    The best way to explain what happened and why TARP was needed is in this way: Imagine you are called to a meeting with 100 other people. Your purpose in going to this meeting is to make personal contact with every person in the room. Your financial future depends on you shaking hands with every person in that room. However, just before stepping into the room you discover that at least one, possibly more of the people in the room have a deadly contagious disease that is spread by contact. How many hands are you going to shake? That answer would be zero!!!!

    And, that is what happened in 2008. As the triple A rated mortgage market collapsed it was taking banks from solvent to insolvent overnight. Banks are the largest owners of mortgage backed securities. Overnight, day by day, these secuities were losing value. Some were losing enough value to cause the holders of these securities to become insolvent.

    Banks borrow everyday to meet reserve and liquidity needs. Who do they borrow from? Other banks. But as the unraveling continued the banking system moved into crisis mode. Banks, fearing the deadly disease of lending to a bank that might be insolvent within the loan period, even if only days, refused to lend to each other. This froze the Commercial Paper markets. OK, so what, right? The largest companies in this country finance day to day cash flow via commercial paper. Without it, these companies were forced to rely on cash on hand. For most, that equaled days or weeks of operating money. After that, no way to pay employees, the light bill, or buy toilet paper. The largest companies in this country, from Apple to GE, from Home Depot to Lowes, from From McDonalds to Wal-Mart - all, at most, weeks from being insolvent and destroyed by the credit market meltdown.

    This was called a credit freeze. it then extended down line into the rest of the credit markets. Bonds stopped trading!!! Without the credit markets the American economy ceases to function at any level. That market is built on trust. Without trust there is no credit market. Without that, no economy. Everything stopped because that trust was gone. Remember, how many people are you going to shake hands with if shaking hands with only one could kill you? This is the position banks found themselves in, in September 2008.

    TARP was needed, not so much to fund the banks because few of the banks actually needed the money. TARP was needed to restore confidence in the credit markets. It assured bank A that if it lent money to bank B overnight that it would get its money back and not get dragged down if bank B went bust. And, that is the only reason for TARP.

    The reason for TARP is widely misunderstood as various groups have redefined its purpose to meet their agenda. Mostly that's political. The average person on the street has no idea how the mechanical financial apparatus that puts a paycheck in their hands works. But make no mistake, without TARP life as we know it would have been permenately changed for the worse. WE averted financial armagedon by days.

    If you doubt that, imagine going to the ATM today and not being able to get your cash out of the bank. Or, imagine not getting your paycheck, or finally, the bank taking your SS check. If these things happened on a mass scale, what would happen in this country? Mass hysteria, panic, bedlam? All the above with rioting in the streets, right? Without TARP we were one or two weeks, at best, from that scenerio.

    For a better understanding of TARP i highly recommend the book Too Big To Fail by Ross Sorkin. This book has been made into a movie as well. Another really good book about the collapse is The Big Short by Michael Lewis. More about the arrogance of Wall Street, as well as the American consumer, and how some saw what was coming and made billions by betting against the American economy.

    TARP, even with all its warts was needed.
    Native is absolutely right. And for those that think they could be casual about this - there's nothing casual about a Global Financial Meltdown resulting in widespread societal meltdown. Hint - police don't get paid. You may think you can shoot the first two guys that break into your house, but they'll figure out how to take you out real fast.

    The perpetrators are not only free, but are looking for seconds, and I don't mean a few paltry billion either.

    Food for thought.
    Native Floridian likes this.
    "A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything." Friedrich Nietzsche

    "You ask where I live. I cannot tell you. I am a Voyageur, a Chicot, sir. I live everywhere. My grandfather was a voyageur; he died while on a voyage. My father was a voyageur; he died while on a voyage. I will also die while en route, and another Chicot will take my place. Such is our course of life."

  6. #6
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    And hilarity ensues.... The fact is an emergency of this magnitude was a perfect example of the "don't let an emergency go to waste" crap. There was a real problem, there is a real problem. And it is still going on.

    But the banks are not the ones who started this, they decided to try and make money given the regulations they were forced to work with. And some bureaucrats kept getting put in positions to make sure the problem kept getting exacerbated. Crony Capitalism has not been addressed yet, it is bigger and more pervasive than it has ever been in this country. And it grows every day. Notice how many ex government consultants and appointees keep being installed in powerful businesses across the country?

    As I stated earlier.. the tarp program was to try a soft crash landing, But I am not convinced we still have a landing gear. And the market is not really a free market anymore. It is subject to political winds nowadays.

    Is it good that the market swings a couple hundred points every other day? That seems strange to me, what do you think causes that, huh?

    Arrogance of wall street indeed.. look at the regulations, look deeper than those books,, and think 1970s. You might even look at who got rich besides Wallstreet people.
    Last edited by Dave44; Jun 16, 2012 at 10:11 PM.

  7. #7
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    Most companies that need a loan every other week go bankrupt sooner than later. Something to do with cash management I think. I mean, really, if i needed cash I was not able to earn faster than I could earn it, that means I have no idea what I am doing.

    As a matter of fact, is that not the basis of Keynesian Economics? You create a need by being inept, or some such?


    "Banks borrow everyday to meet reserve and liquidity needs. Who do they borrow from? Other banks. But as the unraveling continued the banking system moved into crisis mode. Banks, fearing the deadly disease of lending to a bank that might be insolvent within the loan period, even if only days, refused to lend to each other. This froze the Commercial Paper markets. OK, so what, right? The largest companies in this country finance day to day cash flow via commercial paper. Without it, these companies were forced to rely on cash on hand. For most, that equaled days or weeks of operating money. After that, no way to pay employees, the light bill, or buy toilet paper. The largest companies in this country, from Apple to GE, from Home Depot to Lowes, from From McDonalds to Wal-Mart - all, at most, weeks from being insolvent and destroyed by the credit market meltdown."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave44 View Post
    And hilarity ensues.... The fact is an emergency of this magnitude was a perfect example of the "don't let an emergency go to waste" crap. There was a real problem, there is a real problem. And it is still going on.

    But the banks are not the ones who started this, they decided to try and make money given the regulations they were forced to work with. And some bureaucrats kept getting put in positions to make sure the problem kept getting exacerbated. Crony Capitalism has not been addressed yet, it is bigger and more pervasive than it has ever been in this country. And it grows every day. Notice how many ex government consultants and appointees keep being installed in powerful businesses across the country?

    As I stated earlier.. the tarp program was to try a soft crash landing, But I am not convinced we still have a landing gear. And the market is not really a free market anymore. It is subject to political winds nowadays.

    Is it good that the market swings a couple hundred points every other day? That seems strange to me, what do you think causes that, huh?

    Arrogance of wall street indeed.. look at the regulations, look deeper than those books,, and think 1970s. You might even look at who got rich besides Wallstreet people.
    Dave i agree with much of what you're saying here. There are a lot of hands in the pot of blame for our current state. From politicians to consumers. And, don't get me started on banks which are fleecing the american public with the our eleceted officials blessing.

    Where i disagree with you is in your saying that TARP was intended to give us a soft landing. TARP was a full out emercency manover to keep us off the rocks. Without it, we were the Costa Concordia. The truth is, at the time, no knew whether TARP would restore trust between the banks, whether it would work or where the economy would end up. In Sept 2008, those in the know, financial leaders, people on the front lines of the fixed income markets, realized we were standing on the precipice of a financial abyss the likes of which this country had never seen. We knew something had to be done and done quickly or we were toast! TARP was only meant to keep us from going over the side. What came next was unknown.
    Bum Luck likes this.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave44 View Post
    Most companies that need a loan every other week go bankrupt sooner than later. Something to do with cash management I think. I mean, really, if i needed cash I was not able to earn faster than I could earn it, that means I have no idea what I am doing.

    As a matter of fact, is that not the basis of Keynesian Economics? You create a need by being inept, or some such?


    "Banks borrow everyday to meet reserve and liquidity needs. Who do they borrow from? Other banks. But as the unraveling continued the banking system moved into crisis mode. Banks, fearing the deadly disease of lending to a bank that might be insolvent within the loan period, even if only days, refused to lend to each other. This froze the Commercial Paper markets. OK, so what, right? The largest companies in this country finance day to day cash flow via commercial paper. Without it, these companies were forced to rely on cash on hand. For most, that equaled days or weeks of operating money. After that, no way to pay employees, the light bill, or buy toilet paper. The largest companies in this country, from Apple to GE, from Home Depot to Lowes, from From McDonalds to Wal-Mart - all, at most, weeks from being insolvent and destroyed by the credit market meltdown."
    Commercial paper is a cash flow instrument. Unless you want an underground economy every company needs a way to manage cash flow. It has nothing to do with solvency. Can you imagine GE paying one group of employees and telling another group of employees they have to wait for Boeing to pay the bill on last month's jet engine order? This list is endless but it how our economy works. Without this sysytem our economy would be barely a fraction of the size it is today. And, while we can concentrate on the all the ills of big biz and banking, without this system out goes all the innovation of the last 100 plus years.

    All large companies borrow money. Without borrowing they have no way to grow themselves. The american credit markets are considered the safest and most efficient in the world. Which why TARP was so desperately needed.

  10. #10
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    It is funny that you mentioned GE. There is a fantastic example of corrupt crony capitalism. They went so far as change their lending designations (?) so that they could get money from the tarp program. They are hugely inept, unproductive and bloated. In the good old days they, along with GM and Chrysler would have a forced change of direction or reorganization that would streamline them or force them out of business. And guess what, the bondholders would have had the first protection, not squeezed out.

    By the way, as a business owner myself, I am mortified that any company would borrow and even spend without a clear vision of their future costs or expenditures. So I agree that they borrow, I do not agree that they always should. And if they borrow when it is counter to logic or facts it is because there is some other motive.

    And if the economy were a fraction of the size it is today, but it had a solid freemarket framework, It would be immensely more powerful and robust.
    The theory of decoupling from the gold standard was part of the super economy theory, and the social net programs. It was known there is not enough GOLD in the world to pay for all of the social programs that the government wanted so we had to decouple. And we then needed a way to expand the economy with convaluted regulations and fabrication of monetay instruments.

    All in all I believe there is still a piper out there waiting, and his interest rate is steadily climbing.
    Last edited by Dave44; Jun 18, 2012 at 08:47 AM.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave44 View Post
    It is funny that you mentioned GE. There is a fantastic example of corrupt crony capitalism. They went so far as change their lending designations (?) so that they could get money from the tarp program. They are hugely inept, unproductive and bloated. In the good old days they, along with GM and Chrysler would have a forced change of direction or reorganization that would streamline them or force them out of business. And guess what, the bondholders would have had the first protection, not squeezed out.

    By the way, as a business owner myself, I am mortified that any company would borrow and even spend without a clear vision of their future costs or expenditures. So I agree that they borrow, I do not agree that they always should. And if they borrow when it is counter to logic or facts it is because there is some other motive.

    And if the economy were a fraction of the size it is today, but it had a solid freemarket framework, It would be immensely more powerful and robust.
    The theory of decoupling from the gold standard was part of the super economy theory, and the social net programs. It was known there is not enough GOLD in the world to pay for all of the social programs that the government wanted so we had to decouple. And we then needed a way to expand the economy with convaluted regulations and fabrication of monetay instruments.

    All in all I believe there is still a piper out there waiting, and his interest rate is steadily climbing.
    I was using GE as an example only of why large companies need to use the commercial paper markets. Employees don't want to hear i'll pay you when i get paid. As a business owner i'm sure you agree.

    GE didn't take money from TARP. This is widely misunderstood. They raised money from private investors using FDIC guarantees under a special program meant to backstop investors. They didn't get a handout. GE paid the gov't over 2 billion in fees to have the feds guarantee their debt. Not only did it not cost tax payers a dime, the U.S. govt profited from the deal. GE has since exited the program. In light of the frozen credit markets, the lack of access to capital, GE making use of this program, just as any company willing to pay the freight could have done, was a smart move on their part. Again, turning the clock back to that time, investors were afraid of every bond that wasn't a U.S. treasury. So, GE bought the backing of the U. S. govt to reassure investors. At the time GE had a triple A credit rating so the risk to taxpayers was almost non existent.

    Past that , GE is a major lender to industry in its own right. GE's lack of access to capital could have had much more far reaching effects. So, while the govt didn't hand them any of our money they worked with them to find a solution. And, remember, GE was victim of the crisis as were we, they were not one of the perpetrators.

    Nor are they inept. Concensus eps forcasts put them at 30% earning growth over the nxt two years.

    I didn't post here to defend GE, but facts are facts.

    You've lost me on the borrowing without clear vision. All companies borrow with a clear vision of purpose, markets etc. it may not always work as envisioned but noone operates any business without knowing what they are borrowing for.
    Last edited by Native Floridian; Jun 18, 2012 at 12:34 PM.

  12. #12
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    "I was using GE as an example only of why large companies need to use the commercial paper markets. Employees don't want to hear i'll pay you when i get paid. As a business owner i'm sure you agree."

    No, I will not agree. I only keep them if I can afford them. We all share the wealth, or the misery. I have not had a check myself in 30 months. Being the eternal optimist I hope for better times. I do not take out a loan to pay for me either. And I am sure Mr. Immelt has not missed a check. If I had started borrowing for the future I would be bankrupt today.

    "GE didn't take money from TARP. This is widely misunderstood. They raised money from private investors using FDIC guarantees under a special program meant to backstop investors. They didn't get a handout. GE paid the gov't over 2 billion in fees to have the feds guarantee their debt. Not only did it not cost tax payers a dime, the U.S. govt profited from the deal. "

    I could definitely be wrong. But that whole situation stinks so bad and the information so spotty that it is hard to really decide. I give you this link. Obama Administration Gave General Electric

    And this excerpt.

    "- The Obama administration gave corporate giant General Electric—the parent company of NBC--$24.9 million in grants from the $787-billion economic “stimulus” law President Barack Obama signed in February 2009, according to records posted by the administration at Recovery.gov. Despite getting $24.9 million from U.S. taxpayers, GE decreased its U.S.-based employees by 18,000 in 2009, according to the company’s 2009 annual report.
    According to Standard & Poor's, GE took in $156 billion in revenue in 2009.
    GE was the primary recipient of 14 stimulus grants, a spokeswoman for Recovery.gov confirmed to CNSNews.com. These 14 grants provided GE with $24.9 million in tax dollars. On four additional stimulus grants, the primary recipient of the federal money hired GE as a contractor. Recovery.gov is the administration’s website that tracks stimulus expenditures.
    At the end of 2008, GE employed 152,000 U.S. workers, according to its 2009 annual report. But at the end of 2009, according to the report, it employed only 134,000 U.S. workers, a decline of 18,000 workers.
    The Energy Department provided GE with 9 stimulus grants, the Department of Health and Human Services provided the company with 3, and the Justice Department and the Commerce Department each gave the company 1 stimulus grant.
    All of these federal stimulus grants went to GE’s Global Research Center.
    The earliest of the stimulus grants went to GE in July 2009 and the latest in April 2010."

    But really, what about this?

    "CNSNews.com asked a GE spokesperson if the company contested Recovery.gov’s representation that GE had received 14 stimulus grants worth $24.9 million, and also whether the company now employed more or fewer workers as a result of receiving the grants.

    In an e-mail response, GE spokeswoman Anne Eisele said, “I’m afraid I must politely decline to comment.”


    "Nor are they inept. Concensus eps forcasts put them at 30% earning growth over the nxt two years. "

    I believe this is true too. But I do not believe it has anything to do with free market. The good old Edison light bulbs demise was lobbied for by GE. Where do you think they are manufacturing the mercury filled poison one they are replacing it with?

    "I didn't post here to defend GE, but facts are facts.

    You've lost me on the borrowing without clear vision. All companies borrow with a clear vision of purpose, markets etc. it may not always work as envisioned but noone operates any business without knowing what they are borrowing for. "

    I am not here really to bash GE. But the facts may not be the facts. The clear vision some bet on may be the vision of the future they hope for, not necessarily the future that is good for the country.

    You must be an educated person. I can appreciate that. But the future is murky at best. I hope you can look a little bit further than the news accounts you want to see.

  13. #13
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    Dave, That I don't see a boogy man when I look at companies like GE doesn't equate to seeing only what I want to see. I'm paid, rather well in fact, to take a pragmatic view. IOW, it is what it is. There is no agenda beyond determining what "it" is.

    I give you that there are many ills. They are beyond my ability to affect the outcome.
    MrLee likes this.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Native Floridian View Post
    Dave, That I don't see a boogy man when I look at companies like GE doesn't equate to seeing only what I want to see. I'm paid, rather well in fact, to take a pragmatic view. IOW, it is what it is. There is no agenda beyond determining what "it" is.

    I give you that there are many ills. They are beyond my ability to affect the outcome.
    I am sure you will agree with me that I am glad that you live in a country where you are allowed to be paid well. Especially to have a noncommittal and "pragmatic" view. There is a niche for everything in a capitalist society. I am not really sure you were being neutral in responding here though, it nearly looks like you had an opinion. Good luck in your future!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave44 View Post
    I am sure you will agree with me that I am glad that you live in a country where you are allowed to be paid well. Especially to have a noncommittal and "pragmatic" view. There is a niche for everything in a capitalist society. I am not really sure you were being neutral in responding here though, it nearly looks like you had an opinion. Good luck in your future!

    !!!!
    "A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything." Friedrich Nietzsche

    "You ask where I live. I cannot tell you. I am a Voyageur, a Chicot, sir. I live everywhere. My grandfather was a voyageur; he died while on a voyage. My father was a voyageur; he died while on a voyage. I will also die while en route, and another Chicot will take my place. Such is our course of life."

 

 
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