Monday--October 14, 2002—Ground
Zero Plus 397
"Terror Proofing Your Assets"
Editor, New York City Combat Correspondent News
GROUND ZERO, New York
City, October 14 -- Terrorism has many hungers. One of
them includes eating holes in a person's assets. War, or the threat
of it, historically shifts the investment world downward as the economy
moves from stability to instability.
That's why investment planners are
calling for "terror-proofing" or "war-proofing" investment portfolios,
shifting the investments so that a war against Terrorism won't gnaw holes
in the sack of gold one has accumulated over the years.
David Caruso, author of
"Decoding Wall Street," notes that market tumbled when Iraqi forces
invaded Kuwait in August 1990. Share prices dropped 13 percent
at the beginning of the war, he said, but rallied back later.
Caruso is promoting that
investors position 25 percent of their portfolio to offset any war with
Iraq. He promotes US Treasury bonds, gold, defense firms and energy.
With snipers shooting
people randomly in and around Washington, D.C., and hundreds being blown
up in Terrorist bombings in Bali, an historic respite from the world's
troubles, it appears Terrorism is on the march rather than retreating in
the face of a world arguing over how to deal with it--through negotiations
or aggressive, strike-first action.
when the world is secure. War throws a monkey wrench into the
spokes of well oiled world economies, causing investors to hedge on
putting capital where a bomb might explode, or a source of distribution
might evaporate, or become contaminated by some biochemical or nuclear
fallout that would close its borders, wire its economic jaw shut so it
couldn't regurgitate profits.
Wise investors put
on their bullet-proof vests in times of war, and circle their "economic
children" to protect them from the ravages of war. They become
Fathers and Mothers of Vigilance regarding their "investment children,"
looking out for them as they might a human child, sheltering them from the
storms so they won't be maimed or crippled, or suffer the worst of
all--losses instead of gains.
Most people treat
money with abuse. They toss it around, and let it sit
unprotected by shelters that protect it from the termites of inflation.
They don't guard it from the upheavals of market swings, and go about
their daily "live and survive" way of life, watching their financial
children drowning daily as their bank accounts drop and their credit and
debt costs rise. Were they to think about money as they
thought about children, they would rush to its security.
"Financial Terrorism" is the root of much discontent. Poor
financial management puts millions of families at risk. It
deprives families of "economic security," and robs the family coffers of
assets to invest in a child's education, in a better place to live, in
better food, and fewer battles and turmoil over the lack of it.
Financial miss-management in families creates "Terrorism under the roof,"
where parents become embittered over being in constant debt, and arguments
rail over what one doesn't have. The child, deprived of
many things, becomes what he is taught by association--a money abuser.
He or she never learns to respect it, for he or she has no model, not
understanding that money is the fruit of one's labor, and that it is to be
protected so it can offer the children a better way of life.
Anti-money advocates have
no respect for it because they don't realize the importance it offers in
securing a family's stability. They forget it takes over
$200,000 to raise a child in America in a life of middle-class security.
They forget that to achieve that goal, one must invest wisely, and grow
the "monetary children" along with the human ones, or, suffer the
Terrorism of constant debt, and constant worry over where the next dollar
is coming from.
That's why bullet-proofing
one's investments, no matter how small, is an act of Family Vigilance.
If war and its cost to the family's financial security is impending, one
owes it to his or her children to protect the family's sack of gold, and
not let it be victimized by Financial Complacency.
For families that are anti-war,
anti-aggression, there are sources that offer them safe haven for their
investments in times of trouble, in times of war. One of those is
PAX World Funds.
Launched on August 10, 1971,
PAX World Funds was launched as a means of investing in "ethical
companies," ones that didn't reap its profits from defense, weapons,
gambling, liquor, tobacco, and nuclear power. (In the 1920's these
were called "sin companies.") PAX uses
both social and ethical screens to keep its portfolio clear of companies
considered "undesirable." It invests in companies that provide
goods and services that improve the quality of life. Their
primary focus is health care, housing, technology, pollution control,
utilities and education.
PAX is an alternative for
those who think investing feeds " the corporate monster," and who are
adverse to managing their money at the "expense of others."
For those who aren't inclined to "bullet proof" their investments in
"war-related" industries, PAX is a clear, clean option.
( www.paxfund.com )
Terrorism is causing
America and the world to look deeply into their own pockets--at both the
financial cost of war, and the ethical and social costs as well.
We are debating war's nature. Terrorism is forcing every
nation to realize its fragility and its insecurities.
The bombing in
Bali--the ultimate paradise in many people's imagination--is now a place
of Terror, complete with its own Ground Zero strewn with the blood of
innocent people who became victims overnight. Many who died in Bali
are similar to many who died on Nine Eleven--they weren't financially
secure. Their families suffer the economic brunt of losing the
security of a provider.
Many had no
bullet-proofing. Many families have scrambled to make ends
meet, and children have suffered the pain not only of the loss of a
cherished loved one, but have been victimized by financial strife because
the family treasury was unattended, unmanaged.
I grew up in "Economic
Terror." My parents fought over money almost daily. I
grew to hate money because it was the "enemy of love," always seeming to
upstage the discussions of what we were going to do, and what we couldn't
do. I had no training in how to "respect money," and have
suffered my own way through years of bad financial habits--i.e., not
investing, not caring for the "financial" children of my labors.
There is a balance between
being paranoid about money and wise about it. Each person must
find that line and dance upon it in their own style.
But today, this moment, there
is a need for all who have accumulated wealth to protect their family's
security to take a second look at its security. It is time for
those Parents of Vigilance, Citizens of Vigilance and Loved One's of
Vigilance to examine ways to shield their "financial children" from loss
should the war on Terrorism escalate, and put at risk the family's safety
And for those who "live and spend"
and don't invest, it is time to read The Richest Man In Babylon and to
start becoming Financially Vigilant.
And, to teach children to respect
money, not to abhor it, or waste it so that it becomes more
important than love. There is balance.
It needs to be sought.
13--"A Psalm Of Vigilance"
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