Monday, February 22, 2016

Daniel Arbess, Writing In The Wall Street Journal, Says Bernie Sanders Supporters Are Clueless: But It Is the Wall Street Journal That Is Clueless

Daniel J. Arbess, writing in the Wall Street Journal, maintains that American young people who support Bernie Sanders are economically clueless. They blame Wall Street for the nation's financial malaise, Arbess argues, which is misguided. "Don't they realize," he asks plaintively, "that the financial markets are the lubricant of the entire economy--that Wall Street's capacity to provide liquidity and to broker capital is the lifeblood of American companies?"

Actually, Mr. Arbess, America's young people do understand that Wall Street is a lubricant. They've figured out that the global financial industry is a lubricant for raping the middle class.


Arbess seems to believe that young Americans should put their faith in unrestrained capitalism, which will eventually bring us all economic prosperity. But Arbess's own words belie his argument. As he himself says, the underemployment rate for young adults--that is, the percentage of people who are underpaid or working in jobs for which they are overqualified--is 60 percent! And 20 million Americans are burdened by student loans they can't pay back
The political elites, the financial industry, and the mainstream media seem to think Sanders' economic platform is nothing but a pipe dream; but two planks of that platform--universal health care and a free college education--resonate deeply with the young.


Young people know they must obtain useful postsecondary training to get middle-class jobs; and they also know they are being forced to pay far too much to attend a college or a graduate school. And they are coming to grips with the fact that borrowing money to pay for college can sometimes be an economic death sentence since it so difficult to discharge student-loan debt in bankruptcy.  Free college tuition to attend a state institution makes perfect sense to them, and Bernie's plan would actually be cheaper than the Byzantine student-loan program the government is now running.


And young people know that health care costs are eroding their take-home pay. Everyone I know who was forced into Obamacare is unhappy about it. Virtually all of them saw their health insurance costs went up and the quality of their coverage deteriorated. They understand that the United States could offer universal health care on a European model that would be more efficient and far cheaper than the cobbled-together scheme we now have in place that benefits no one but the medical industry and the insurance companies.

The fact that the Wall Street Journal thinks it is appropriate for a hedge fund manager to lecture Americans about the presidential campaign shows us just how clueless that newspaper is.
As for Mr. Arbess himself, I found a recent news story about his financial acumen. According to a 2014 online story in Bloomberg Business, "Perella Weinberg Partners LP is shutting its Xerion hedge fund, after its manager, Daniel Arbess, failed to recoup a 21 percent loss dating from 2011."


So maybe American young people are smarter than Mr. Arbess when it comes to making political decisions that affect their own economic well being.





Perella Weinberg’s Xerion Closing After 2011 Loss Proves Fatal
Mr. Arbess thinks young Bernie supporters are clueless.
References


Daniel J. Arbess. The Young and the Economically Clueless. Wall Street Journal, February 19, 2016. Available at http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-young-and-the-economically-clueless-1455924699


Kelly Bit and Katherine Burton. Peralla Weinberg's Xerion Fund To Close, Return Money. Bloomberg Business News, November 24, 2014. Available at http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2014-11-14/perella-weinberg-s-xerion-fund-to-close-return-money-to-clientshttp://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2014-11-14/perella-weinberg-s-xerion-fund-to-close-return-money-to-clients

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