Can capitalists save capitalism?
When Silicon Valley newspaper columnists start pondering if capitalism can be saved, well, you got to know these are not normal times.
If you own shares in one of the mutual funds that has been cheating small investors on behalf of favored clients and/or managers, you have every right to feel sick to your stomach — and furious. This is betrayal on an epic scale.
“If you’re waiting for the last shoe, you have to realize this might be a centipede,” says Joseph A. Grundfest, who served on the Securities and Exchange Commission under Presidents Reagan and the senior George Bush.
Here’s why I’m finally beginning to get optimistic, even amid an apparently endless parade of sleaze. American capitalism is peering over a cliff, but there have to be enough sane and honorable capitalists who won’t let the bad guys pull everyone else over the edge. It’s a binary choice.
This implies the problem is just a few bad apples, and not an entire system gone berserk – something, I think, that remains to be seen.