The Corner

Atlas Frowned

A friend in the hedge fund biz sent me this on Friday. I didn’t get the chance to read it on Alan Colmes’ show. Identifying information removed.

Hey John — Would you like a sound bite from one of those evil hedge fund guys for Colmes’ show tonight? How’s this: “As a professional investor I’d have to be out of my skull to partner with this government on anything.”

This administration has made it quite clear that they can’t be relied upon to honor contracts or legal precedents and if I can’t know what the rules are before the game starts then I’m not going to play. Hedge funds aren’t like the banks … we haven’t failed. We aren’t beholden to the taxpayer to make our way. We have contractual and fiduciary obligation which we will honor. People pay us to make them money not to meet a political goal. So Obama had better think long and hard before he tries to bully us like he did the banks, or try to tell us that “he’s the only thing between us and the pitchforks.”

Also, Geithner and Obama have been saying that they plan on balancing the budget once the crisis is past. The press may believe that twaddle about how he’ll do it by “making things more efficient,” but we in the hedge fund industry aren’t so stupid. We’ve looked at the numbers and know what he’s planning to do. I know dozens of people who are already putting the legal structures in place to move their companies and themselves offshore and away from the grip of the tax man. These are some of the smartest most dynamic people in the world and they’ll have no trouble staying ahead of the kids from the short bus over at the IRS.

So unless Obama wants to run out of “other people’s money” a lot sooner than he expected, he had better keep some people around to pay the bills. And if he keeps demonizing the productive and saying that it’s their responsibility to let him spend their money on the unproductive, then we’ll all be gone. I’ll be working my 14 hour days is Bahrain or Singapore, and Obama can go suck eggs. He needs the productive classes a lot more than the productive classes need him.

On the plus side, at least my [offspring] will be able to get a decent education.

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