How To Even…Invest in Wall Street

By Michael Gushue & CL Bledsoe

Dogs are gullible. If you have a stick or a ball in your hand and pretend to throw it, they’ll usually run to where they think it should land, or, if they’re old or lazy, they’ll look. You can do it again and again, and they’ll keep looking, every time.

We apologize to our readers if it bothers you to see us insult dogs. Let’s start again.

People are gullible. If you tell them they can invest their money in Wall Street, and that money will still exist (and even grow) when they’re ready to retire, they’ll do it. You can tell them this again and again, even as Wall Street crashes and they lose their retirement, and they’ll keep investing, every time.

But maybe this one time will be different. We’ve got a Republican in the white house, after all. That’s always good for business, right?

But that’s okay, because only poor people are dumb enough to lose their life savings and retirement fund, and who cares about them? We don’t really meant that. It’s just our way of saying that Wall Street is the ultimate get-richer-quick scheme for the already rich. The problem is where to throw all this money so that it bounces right back? Well, the obvious first choice is to give it to us. If you’re determined to show a return on your investment, we would be willing to dance for it.

Otherwise, you’re going to need to figure out where to invest. We just happen to have some handy suggestions.

Ethical Investments

This is what’s known as a sucker bet. If a company is truly ethical, they’re not going to make much money. It’s called Capitalism, not Hug-a-rainbowism, after all. But some people do try to make ethical investments. Aside from the lack of money-making, another problem with this is that there’s a difference between a company saying they’re ethical and one actually being ethical. There’s a lot of money to be made claiming to be ethical, especially if you cut a few corners in achieving it. So, as an investor, how do you determine if a company is actually ethical or, you know, might make some money?

The thing about ethics is that they can be affected by the situation. One might say murder is always wrong, but what about killing in self-defense, or if some finishes the milk after you’ve right after you’ve poured bowlful of Froot Loops into a bowl? Similarly, a person might say putting pineapple on pizza is always wrong, or putting mayonnaise on hot dogs, but killing a person for doing these things does not constitute self-defense, unless the hotdog or pizza killed them, which would honestly raise a whole new set of issues.

But this doesn’t solve the problem. What we need is some person or group of people who can determine what is ethical for a company to do and what is not. We know who you’re thinking of, so we’ll just say it: Captain Planet. Captain Planet is a force for good, formed from the efforts of five disparate young people (well, they were young 25 years ago). Captain Planet cannot be coerced by bribes or animalist wants. Also, he’s got a really weird skin tone, which is probably vaguely positive in a middle class liberal kind of way.

We know what you’re thinking, again (we’re, like, probably psychic, or something). This all sounds like a whole lot of not-making-money. Yeah, okay, but it could be a tax write off. Also, we’re pretty sure the Captain Planet is actually owned by Lockheed, so.

Real Estate

People used to say that real estate was a safe investment because people will keep being born. That’s true, but it presupposes that they will be able to afford to buy a house at some point. Unfortunately, as wages stagnate and young people spend all their money on avocados, real estate has become a riskier investment. So how to lure them back? Three words, and two of them are hyphenated: avocado-shaped houses. They could be built from recycled brown guacamole no one would eat, and filled with straw or trash or some bullshit that makes hippies happy but is also definitely cancer-causing. (PR is important.) This is kind of a no-brainer, and we’re surprised we’re the first to come up with it. Can’t imagine why.

Ask Your Kids

You know who spends money? Kids. Sure, it actually belongs to their parents, but let’s be honest, if it means they shut the hell up, parents will buy kids just about anything. But how can you know what kids want? Maybe you have kids, but, let’s be honest, they’re not setting any trends, unless it’s the trend of not doing what you tell them to do. And besides, what if your kid is an outlier? You need to understand the spending habits of large groups of kids.

What you need to do is start hanging out around playgrounds, schools, and anywhere kids gather. Listen to what they’re talking about, maybe take a few pictures or record them on your phone. Follow them when they leave. See what they’re talking about and then invest in that. If you’re not getting any good leads, it might be a good idea to carry some sample products with you. Hide them in an overcoat (you don’t want anyone else to see what you’re doing — they might steal your idea). Lure kids over to see what you’re hiding in your coat, and then take that information to the bank, or investment broker, who, let’s be honest, is probably also hanging out around the playground.

Ensuring Success

Investments are a tricky thing. Maybe a company will do well, or maybe they will make more money for their CEO if they declare bankruptcy and take all your money. How can you ensure that a company will be successful? It helps if you’re a billionaire. Of course, no billionaires read this blog because billionaires can only read if the blood of newborn infants is smeared into their eyes. They tend not to waste that on blogs. Unless Alex Jones wrote it.

Let’s say you’ve found a company you really like. How can you tell if it’s going to be successful? It might just be a shell company for an international con artist/president, after all. Here are a few things to consider:

  1. Do they have a name? If so, is it subtly evil? Companies like Evilco, Satancorp, or Monsanto can be a risky investment. On the one hand, they may usher in the end of all mankind, on the other, they might offer a quick high return on investment. This can be a tough decision for some — notice we didn’t say “some person” — to make.
  2. Do they have an address? Is it a real place? Note: “Your Butt,” is not actually a real address. Learned that the hard way.
  3. Possibly tying in with #1, does the company seem like a plot device?

Sometimes, though, you’ve got to take matters into your own hands. Investing in a company is a lot like playing the lottery — the more tickets you buy, the better your odds of success. That means you should buy as many stocks as possible. Mortgage your house. Sell your pets.

***

The most important thing to remember about investing in Wall Street is that you are totally not morally responsible for all the people who will suffer and die as a result of the actions of some of the companies you now profit from. Probably no more than one or two of the companies would qualify as actually big-E-evil. You’re totally absolved of all of that stuff that may or may not be happening. Seriously, if making a lot of money in questionable ways were bad, it would be mentioned in things like religious texts or moral philosophy, and we can’t think of a single example of anyone saying anything like that. No, no, don’t Google it. Just trust us. You’re just trying to get comfortable, right? No harm no foul. And everybody else is doing it. That’s certainly been a viable excuse, historically. And, hey, when the market crashes again, inevitably, and you lose all the money you’ve made from exploiting the suffering of others — sorry, NOT being responsible — you’ll be left with only that certainty: you did nothing wrong. And now you’re broke again. But some people you wouldn’t want to share an elevator with will make more billions. Yay!

The only blog you’ll ever need. By Michael Gushue & CL Bledsoe Archives: https://medium.com/@howtoeven/how-to-even-archives-3eeea1f52d31

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