We’ve heard it all before. Blame greed. Blame selfishness. Blame Mr. Potter, the evil banker from “It’s a Wonderful Life.” The pundits and politicians agree. All the usual suspects deserve blame for the 2008 Financial Crisis, housing bubble, and exploding debt: Bankers, corporations, fat cats, and top-hat-wearing mustache twirlers of every sort.
But we’ve been here before. Many times. (Does the Great Depression ring a bell?) So how do we keep getting into this mess, you ask? Well, obviously, once you come to understand—as almost anyone running for public office will tell you—that financial types are by their very nature, liars, thieves and scum-sucking opportunists (or as one interviewee put it: “evil people quashing humanity”) then you realize how inevitable our dilemma was!
By the time Jesus drove them from the temple, moneychangers had already long been established as scoundrels.
To the Greeks and Romans, they were vultures barbarous & wretched. Their crime? They loaned money…at interest.
Dante consigned them to the seventh level of hell, beneath murderers, suicides, and sodomites.
Shakespeare caricatured them as the reprehensible epitome of selfishness: Shylock in “The Merchant of Venice.”
All of this begs the question: Since we’ve been told over and over that making money from money is inherently selfish and immoral, and that those who indulge in the practice are, well, see above, how did all the money grubbing get so far out of hand? Who’s been minding the store? And while we’re on the subject…
- Why has American banking been, traditionally, among the least stable systems in the world?
- Why is the financial sector, despite being the most tightly regulated segment of the American economy, the most prone to crises?
- Who or what really caused the Stock Market Crash, Great Recession, Savings and Loan Crisis, Housing bubble, the 2008 Financial Crisis, and all the other banking crises—nearly one per decade!—that have occurred since the founding of America?
- Who or what is actually to blame for our stagnant economy?
- Why are Americans, and especially students, burdened with more debt than ever before?
- Why, for the first time in history, will America’s children be worse off than their parents?
Perhaps aside from “greed” and “money grubbing,” there have been—and currently are—other factors at play…
“The Moneychangers” is a feature-length documentary film that, for the first time, examines the evolution, viability, and morality of America’s financial system. Appropriately, our guide for this sordid tale is none other than the direct descendent of the world’s most experienced (and notorious) loan shark: Shylock. (Yes, *the* Shylock.)
“The Moneychangers or Shylock’s History of Moneylending” includes interviews with leading financial figures, former heads of the FED and FDIC, economists, bankers, Wall Street insiders, economic historians, and the man-on-the-street to provide a provocative, informative, and objective investigation of this controversial, highly charged, largely misunderstood topic. It’s guaranteed to shatter your preconceived notions about banks, crises, and regulations—or, at the very least, leave you shaking your head at the insanity of it all.
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