Sunday, October 28, 2007

Ben Stein Rides Again

"Supposedly, a number of wizard managers consistently earn more than 40 percent a year for their hedge funds. Yes, I know that this conflicts with every bit of investment and market theory--or almost every bit. ... Let's put Mr. Cohen to work for the common good. Let's have the federal government issue about $10 trillion in Steven A. Cohen National Debt Retirement Fund Bonds. After interest is paid on the bonds, if Mr. Cohen makes 40 percent on the money, the fund will return 36 percent a year. ... Why do we need federal taxes?", Ben Stein, in the NYT, 28 October.

I remember learning in 1994 the world's smartest woman, Hillary, turned $1,000 into $100,000 in a year trading cattle futures. At the time I suggested Goldman Sachs (GS) raise a $10 billion fund and give it to Hillary to manage for two years. At the end of two years the $10 billion will be $100 trillion and GS will be able to divide the spoils as follows: $3 trillion to GS, $48.5 trillion to the investors, $24.25 trillion to Uncle Sam and the balance to Hillary. My cut of GS $3 trillion, a "mere" $30 billion. Hey Hank, consider it. I don't want to think about how big the fund would be after three years. We would all be eating Merle Haggard's "Rainbow Stew", 1999. By the way, a similiar plan was floated in 1720 in England called the "South Sea Bubble". It ended with a crash.

PS. Hank, do you think GS could find a $300 million a year job for me in product development?

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