“If you wanted to understand a politician you mustn’t pay too much attention to his speeches, but find out who were his paymasters. A politician couldn’t rise in public life, in France any more than in America, unless he had the backing of big money, and it was in times of crisis like this that he paid his debts.
The great corporation which employed you lied to you, and lied to the whole country—from top to bottom it was nothing but one gigantic lie.”
"To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for the Lord's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:7-10
Great power and wealth rarely serve to bring out the best in a person. Rather to the contrary, it most often exposes and amplifies any of their weaknesses in character.
If a fellow was a duplicitous, greedy, self-serving, and double-dealing type before they came into power, it is highly unlikely that more wealth and more power will suddenly make them virtuous. The notion that a greedy person will somehow obtain enough and suddenly become empathetic is a fallacy. Greed knows no bounds and is never satisfied by its very nature. We can imagine ourselves having enough, perhaps, but that is because we are not greedy in the pathological sense.
Indeed, I think the mistaking of enormous wealth and power for virtue in the first place is one of the greatest errors of our culture.
One of the great exceptions you might think in US history was Franklin Roosevelt. However it ought to be noted that he inherited his money and family position. But it was through the infliction of a crippling disease, that affected him every day of his life, through which he obtained a genuine understanding of the human condition, and who he was. It was his affliction that gave him his greatness.
Again and again we see how those who have been granted great natural gifts and who use them to achieve good for others and not themselves are almost invariably afflicted in some way, some obstacle that prevents them from overreaching themselves, from forgetting who they really are, from falling victim to the belief in themselves above all.
Abraham Lincoln himself notes how circumstances in his life would bring him to his knees.
“I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had no where else to go. My own wisdom and that of all about me seemed insufficient for that day.”Those who can never see their own deficiency and errors and fundamental humanity, bringing them into empathy and kindness for others, a toleration for the mistakes and shortcoming that are a part of the human condition, are perhaps the saddest cases of all. They have willingly blinded themselves, and others, to the true state of things, and will too often lead themselves and those who follow them into the abyss.
Gold and silver were rallying on Sunday evening on the increasing geopolitical risks.
However, volumes overall were light today, as several overseas exchanges remained closed and traders off work after the long holiday weekend.
And so the metals were sold, and stocks rallied on more puffery and nonsense.
Have a pleasant evening.