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Whatever scenario this fiasco fits into, whether you simply look at it as a bear market correction which some people were not smart enough to see and respond to in time, or a devastation of the market by the people Lok and I refer to, or a mixture of both (which is probably the truest scenario of all)....


I don't care who is right, nor where the truth might be. But I care hugely about the utility of either position and would argue --at least for myself-- that what you are calling yours and Loki's position would get me into trouble. That sort of cop-out --"there's truth in both sides"-- is the sort of intellectual sloppiness and moral irresponsibility that would lose me money.

It's my belief --which I don't care is true or not-- that wealth isn't created. It is merely redistributed. Investing is less than a zero-sum game, because the house always gets its cut. In order for me to make a dollar, I have to take the money out of someone else's pockets. When I approach investing with the idea that investing is not a process of benign organic growth --"growing the pie for everyone"-- but a struggle over a fixed amount of resources, I am forced to pay attention to the downsides of investing and to manage my risks. My strategy, always, is to keep myself out of trouble. Capital preservation is my number one job, and then capital appreciation. That bear market dinged me, but it didn't devastate me, because no bear market ever will. I don't make stupidly huge bets, and I cut my losses promptly rather than wishing and hoping. (WWWIII, coming to a city near you, soon, might undo me though. In that case, all claims are withdrawn and all bets are off, as sack of potatoes and a gun becomes the coin of the realm.)

To repeat, might I humbly suggest that you are not reading carefully, nor thinking clearly, and are conflating two separate things: the fact that markets go up and down and the possible reasons why they do so. You keep wanting to shift the blame from whose shoulders it belongs to someone else's, which is exactly the reason why the cycles repeat themselves from one generation to the next, and why scams --financial and otherwise-- continue happen, Greed and Gullibility. (Think hoaxes, if you want parallels.) Go back and read your market history. What you are calling a "devastation" --and are implying is unprecedented-- is merely the latest episode. There will be more, should we all live long enough to see the unfolding of another secular market cycle.

"Bulls make money; bears make money; pigs and sheep get slaughtered."

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