*If the former chairman of Nasdaq is a crook,*

*Who Can You Trust in America?*

Madoff's fall has planted the seeds of suspicion. We now doubt those we have
done business with for years. The presumption of trust is gone.

*By Nicholas von Hoffman

Dcember 20, 2008 "The Nation <http://www.thenation.com/>" -- - T*he news of
Bernard Madoff's $50 billion fraud has hit the investor/401(k) class as
nothing else -- not the fall of Lehman Brothers, not the death of Bear
Stearns, nor the string of insolvency announcements of one household name
after another. Madoff is the blow that did it.

Lesser explosions connected with Madoff are expected. His story that for
decades he ran his gigantic fraud by himself is unbelievable. One man alone
could not have done the work of inventing and cranking out thousands of
statements every month, not to mention keeping track of the comings and
goings of billions of dollars. Madoff has confederates.

That Madoff took some of the members of the centimillionaire club to the
cleaners is not what caused the shock. It is the damage done to so many
smaller investor/savers, so many pension funds, so many charities. You do
not have to be one of Madoff's victims to be affected. Madoff, his own
businesses aside, was a major figure in the world of investments, of stocks
and bonds and securities and exchanges. If the former chairman of
a crook, whom do you trust?

Madoff has sown the seeds of suspicion everywhere. He has caused us to doubt
men and women with whom we have done business with for years. There is no
way of knowing if someone is a con artist. The presumption of trust is gone.

Business depends on trust, trust of all kinds. Trust that when you place an
order with a broker he or she will get you the best price, trust that your
investment or retirement adviser is not getting an under-the-table kickback
to put your old age money into a shoddy annuity.

Trust is the indispensable element in all businesses. Contractors depend on
subcontractors to get the job done when they say they will; retailers depend
on distributors to deliver on time; lawyers are trusted to meet filing
deadlines, steel fabricators are expected to get gigantic trusses to the
building site exactly when they are needed. Doctors are expected to put
patients' interests above money considerations; parts manufacturers are
relied on to deliver on time to the factory. Business runs on trust, and
Bernard Madoff has busted it.

So the *Wall Street Journal* says to its readers, "Could your investment
manager be another Bernard
if someone like Mr. Madoff can be accused of running a $50 billion Ponzi
scheme, can investors anywhere sleep easy? Ordinarily, when you are picking
an investment manager or financial planner, you're given some common-sense
advice. Avoid managers who are unknown, or unregulated, or come without good
referrals, or haven't been in the industry long. But none of this would have
saved you from Mr. Madoff. 'This guy had oodles of referrals, at the highest
levels,' notes Duane Thompson, a managing director at the Financial Planning
Association in Washington. 'He was [former] chairman of Nasdaq. He'd " been
in business since 1960.

Fear, confusion and mistrust have been amplified by the absence of
government supervision, regulation or policing. The Securities and Exchange
it did not do its job.

With the closing down of the old-time pension system, millions of employees
were forced into 401(k)s requiring knowledge of finance, bonds, stocks,
weird-sounding investments and tax law. They have had to make investment
decisions effecting their future with no government protection against
misrepresentation, legal traps laid for them and the small print obfuscation
financial institutions practice on their customers. The result is the
millions who fear that they will be living out the last decades of
lives counting their food stamps and hunting for bargains in the used
clothing bins.

The Madoff swindle puts the spotlight on the collapse of the 401(k)
retirement plan. The United States is the only advanced nation without a
complete retirement system.

For 401(k)s to have worked, a bull market or at least a flat market was
necessary. It was an unreliable gamble from the git-go, an arrangement that
would fall to pieces when next the market crashed.

Madoff and the crash underline the powerlessness of the millions. As a
matter of principle, the Republicans defended the unregulated lawlessness
that enabled a Madoff to run his swindles. As for the Democrats, sometime in
the Clinton era they sold their party to Wall Street and now they have Chuck
Schumer to make sure it stays sold.

It remains for President-elect Obama to void the deal and break his party
free to help those who have nowhere else to look.


Pada tanggal 21/12/08, Hafsah Salim <muskitaw...@yahoo.com> menulis:
>   Yang percaya itu dunia mana ???
> Mana ada yang percaya ekonomi Islam dimasyarakat yang memiliki
> pendidikan ekonomi ??? Ngelindur jangan disini.
> Cina ekonominya maju tak pernah merencanakan mau mengganti dengan
> ekonomi Islam, juga India, juga Amerika, juga Russia, juga Jepang,
> semua negara2 didunia tak ada yang tertarik ekonomi Islam, bahkan
> justru Syariah Islam yang juga mencakup ekonomi Islam sekarang ini
> justru diperangi seluruh dunia karena terror2nya kepada semua negara2
> didunia yang bergabung dalam "War on Terror".
> Ekonomi Islam itu adalah merampok seperti sunnah nabi yang merampoki
> para pedagang Yahudi.
> Ekonomi Islam merampok dan menjarah toko2 cina, dan sesama umat
> seperti yang dialami umat Islam Ahmadiah.
> Dan ciri2 ekonomi merampok dan menjarah ini sudah terkenal menjadi
> ciri2 khas ekonomi Islam diseluruh dunia sejak zaman nabi masih hidup.
> Ekonomi Islam didunia Islam dikenal sebagai ekonomi Syariah, tapi
> dinegara yang bukan Islam dinamakan EKONOMI PENJARAH.
> Ny. Muslim binti Muskitawati.
> --- In zamanku@yahoogroups.com <zamanku%40yahoogroups.com>, eddyansyah
> rasyaad lubis
> <edi_a...@...> wrote:
> >
> >
> > Poling Al-Jazeera:
> > 88,5% PercayaÂ
> > Sistem Ekonomi Islam yang Paling Baik untuk Diterapkan di Dunia.
> >
> > Syabab.Com - Setelah krisis keuangan global melanda, sistem keuangan
> apakah yang anda percaya paling baik untuk diterapkan di dunia?
> Begitulah bunyi pertanyaan poling yang al-Jazeera baru-baru ini. Hasil
> poling selama sepekan dari tanggal 19/10/2008 hingga 26/10/2008
> menunjukkan bahwa 88,5% dari 29.486 responden menjawab sistem keuangan
> Islam. Sementara responden yang memilih sistem keuangan kapitasli
> hanya 5,0% dan yang memilih sistem keuangan komunis sebanyak 6,5%.
> >
> > Sistem ekonomi Kapitalisme saat ini sedang tenggelam, setelah
> sebelumnya sistem komunis terkubur, kini hanya Islam saja satu solusi
> ampuh dan bebas dari berbagai krisis. Karena memang sistem Islam ini
> berasal dari Alloh Yang Mahatahu. Tak salah bila sebagian mengatakan,
> "kapitalisme di ujung tanduk, khilafah di depan mata."
> >
> > Di saat akhir-akhir keruntuhan Khilafah dulu, umat Islam terpesona
> dengan peradaban Barat hingga mereka mengabaikan institusi politik
> yang telah memayungi mereka berabad lamanya. Kebangkitan Barat dengan
> ideologi kapitalisme dilihat sebagai satu kemajuan baru dunia yang
> berdasarkan pada konsep kebebasan. Umat lalu mulai meninggalkan Islam
> dan mengejar kemewahan dunia yang dijarkan oleh para kapitalis.
> Sementara hukum-hukum Islam yang berasal dari Allah Swt. dan Khilafah
> sebagai institusi penegaknya mulai diabaikan.
> >
> >
> > Setelah keruntuhan Khilafah, peradaban Barat masuk secara drastis ke
> dalam kehidupan umat Islam dan pandangan hidup umat mulai berubah
> kepada kecintaan duniawi. Akhirnya, umat Islam kehilangan arah dan
> mulai lupa untuk apa sebenarnya mereka diciptakan. Kemewahan dunia
> yang ditawarkan oleh Kapitalis di bawah kebebasan berekonomi
> membutakan mata mereka kepada akhirat. Lalu mereka terperosok kepada
> lembah kehinaan karena mengambil Kapitalis sebagai cara hidup dengan
> meninggalkan Islam.
> >
> > Namun, mereka yang sadar akan hal ini tidak berdiam diri. Beberapa
> ulama dan mereka para mukhlisin, tak henti-hentinya menyampakan
> kerusakan Kapitalisme dan memberikan pencerahan pada sistem yang
> benar, Islam. Ide Islam pun menjadi perbincangan, baik di
> negeri-negeri Muslim maupun di Barat. Hingga mulailah kesadaran umat
> akan Islam mulai tumbuh kembali.
> >
> > Kini, di tengah-tengah kegoncangan sistem Kapitalisme, umat mulai
> sadar bahwa ada satu sistem lain yang dapat menyelamatkan mereka.
> Setelah melihat dengan mata kepala mereka sendiri, bahwa Kapitalisme
> lambat laut menuju kematiannya, umat mulai mencari penyelamat mereka.
> Tidak ada lagi sistem yang benar-benar mampu manjadi penyelamat,
> kecuali sistem yang berasal dari Sang Pencipta, Alloh-lah Yang Mahatahu.
> >
> > Jajak pendapat yang dilakukan oleh Al-Jazeera di atas menunjukkan
> betapa umat kini merindukan sistem ekonomi yang bebas dari krisis dan
> goncanan, yakni sistem ekonomi Islam. Hanya saja, mungkinkah sistem
> ekonomi Islam tersebut akan tegak secara sempurna, sementara
> sistem-sistem lainnya masih berkiblat pada Kapitalisme? Tentu saja,
> tak mungkin. Sudah saatnya, kaum Muslim dan umat manusia di dunia ini
> dalam segala aspek kembali kepada sistem yang berasal dari-Nya, dan
> hal tersebut akan sempurna tegak hanya dengan keberdaan Khilafah
> Rasyidah yang akan datang kembali, Insya Allah, demikialah janji-Nya.
> [m/syabab.com]
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > Jatuh cinta itu seperti apa ya rasanya? Temukan jawabannya di
> Yahoo! Answers! http://id.answers.yahoo.com
> >

Kirim email ke