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Minnich: We serve with our investments

It’s good to have a little money put away. Savings that will probably blow by in the last 15 weeks of life to pay the nursing home for services necessary but not recognized.

But let’s not get ahead of the story. We all need to feel as good about life and the prospects for happiness and security for as long as we can dress ourselves and take nourishment without a tarp laid down around us, so let’s enjoy the moment. And nothing makes us feel better than checking the Dow Jones every day to see if our nest egg is growing as fast as the little stack of mail with windows lying on the kitchen table.

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Are we winning today, or losing? What did the Dow do?

Lookie! The lettuce didn’t poison anyone and the North Koreans didn’t blow up Tokyo, so the value of the old portfolio is up today.

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But the next day, The Cornsilk Tweeter is at it again and the stocks take a dive. We’re all gonna die broke. It’s the fault of the fake lamestream news treating our leader very, very unfairly. It’s a disgrace. The Democrats are behind it.

So, after a few weeks of that it’s nice to sit down and get the story from the people who really know what’s happening. The insiders.

It’s not a lot of money, but it’s all we have besides what we put aside each week for beer and pretzels at the club and poker on Tuesday night and a fiver in the church basket on Sunday. So, we want to hear that everything is good; under control, growing.

We provide OPM: Other People’s Money. The real insiders don’t call us that to our faces, but that’s the role of the small investor, to invest the seed money for the bankers to pool so risk-takers can borrow and use it for the mega-projects that ensure the good life in homes in the Islands, memberships in exclusive clubs, prestige and connections. The kind that allow one to contribute to political candidates and perhaps show potential as a nominee to a nice ambassadorship or some other plum.

It’s investments by many small investors that enable the top 1 percent or so to control 95 percent of the wealth of the nation. We are essential to the efforts that fund the wheeling and dealing that top-tier club members in major corporations use to pay for court challenges resulting in the designation of corporations are people, too, and are therefore afforded greater access to freedom of speech because they can afford to buy the TV time and the lobbyists.

It’s our money that gets legislation through Congress that allows tax cuts to benefit every American.

Uh, wait. I’ve heard a few of my cohorts asking, after looking at their wallets following the most recent tax cut. Is this all there is? Where’s the cost of a new pair of shoes?

Oh, not to worry, assure the corporate wonks. You have more money than you did a year ago.

But there’s so much conflict, says a voice in the audience. How can that be good for the economy?

Forget the volatility. There’s always been volatility. Everything is fine. Talking points from Wall Street. Facts and figures like, the tax cuts will add up to an average of about $1,000 per household.

Its what news folks call spin. That “average” is calculated by including the total wealth of the plantation owner and his family with the value of the pots of gruel set before the 950 slaves in their shacks.

Which is how the people in charge convince us that we should be, on average, satisfied with what we get.

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Dean Minnich retired from a journalism career and served two terms as county commissioner. His column appears on Thursdays. Comments may be emailed to dminnichwestm@gmail.com.

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