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Sunday, July 15, 2007

Turning the clock back to the days of the robber barons

The megalomania in this piece about the very rich from today's NY Times is truly incredible.

These days, Mr. Weill and many of the nation’s very wealthy chief executives, entrepreneurs and financiers echo an earlier era — the Gilded Age before World War I — when powerful enterprises, dominated by men who grew immensely rich, ushered in the industrialization of the United States. The new titans often see themselves as pillars of a similarly prosperous and expansive age, one in which their successes and their philanthropy have made government less important than it once was.

“People can look at the last 25 years and say this is an incredibly unique period of time,” Mr. Weill said. “We didn’t rely on somebody else to build what we built, and we shouldn’t rely on somebody else to provide all the services our society needs.”

I am particularly struck my Mr. Weill's self-boasting comment that he did it all on his own with no help from anyone. Bull roar. Citigroup is a government subsidized entity of the worst kind. But, I guess these guys live in the same parallel universe that Bush does.

There was a reason they called these guys robber barons at the turn of the last century.


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