I, for one, genuinely appreciate Mr. Billionare Munger speaking truthfully.
- “Charles Munger, the billionaire vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., defended the U.S. financial-company rescues of 2008 and told students that people in economic distress should “suck it in and cope.”
- “You should thank God” for bank bailouts, Munger said in a discussion at the University of Michigan on Sept. 14, according to a video posted on the Internet. “Now, if you talk about bailouts for everybody else, there comes a place where if you just start bailing out all the individuals instead of telling them to adapt, the culture dies.”
- “There’s danger in just shoveling out money to people who say, ‘My life is a little harder than it used to be,’” Munger said at the event, which was moderated by CNBC’s Becky Quick. “At a certain place you’ve got to say to the people, ‘Suck it in and cope, buddy. Suck it in and cope.’”
In other words, morality is for the common folks, but banks can expect to be the recipients of endless bailout largess, at the expense of those very same moral common folks, because the banks are just Too Big To Fail. If any of you needed a clear vision of what the phrase “Moral Hazard” means, there it is, in plain English, straight from the horse’s mouth.
Mr. Munger apparently went on to explain how it was done for our own good. I am not aware whether he made any comment on the fact that saving the financial institutions might have been instrumental in preserving his place atop the pile, from which he can continue dispensing platitudes about morality.