Wednesday, November 14, 2012

I actually have something good to say about Occupy Wall Street

I'm not generally a fan of ill-defined protest movements, but I'll make an exception for a new initiative from Occupy Wall Street.

OWS is holding a benefit concert tomorrow that's called "The People's Bailout."  What's interesting is how the proceeds will be used:
OWS is going to start buying distressed debt (medical bills, student loans, etc.) in order to forgive it. As a test run, we spent $500, which bought $14,000 of distressed debt. We then ERASED THAT DEBT. (If you’re a debt broker, once you own someone’s debt you can do whatever you want with it — traditionally, you hound debtors to their grave trying to collect. We’re playing a different game. A MORE AWESOME GAME.)

This is a simple, powerful way to help folks in need — to free them from heavy debt loads so they can focus on being productive, happy and healthy. As you can see from our test run, the return on investment approaches 30:1. That’s a crazy bargain!
Now that's what I call a sensible approach to philanthropy--one that leverages the tools of capitalism.  If only all protest movements were smart enough to adopt high-leverage market-based mechanisms for change!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How are you achieving this 30% return? I am calculating -100% return.