Greed is Good

Wall Street was one of the formative movies of my childhood (ok, I was 17 when I saw it).  But I think a lot of the morals of that film have stood the test of time.  The most memorable scene has Michael Douglas (aka Gordon Gekko) saying:

Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right.  Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed in all its forms, greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge, has marked the upward surge of mankind — and greed, you mark my words — will not only save Teldar Paper but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA…

Replace “Teldar Paper” with “AIG” or “Citibank” and you’ve got a modern story.  The moral of the story (back then and now) is that capalist greed is the engine that will drive us out of trouble, but that motive must not be left unwatched.