The Black Friday panic of 1869 saw mobs of angry Americans drag bankers from their offices and hang them in the streets. From a recent Bloomberg story, we learn that bankers on Wall Street are preparing themselves in an effort to avoid a similar fate.
â€œI just wrote my first reference for a gun permit,â€ said a friend, who told me of swearing to the good character of a Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker who applied to the local police for a permit to buy a pistol. The banker had told this friend of mine that senior Goldman people have loaded up on firearms and are now equipped to defend themselves if there is a populist uprising against the bank.
I called Goldman Sachs spokesman Lucas van Praag to ask whether itâ€™s true that Goldman partners feel they need handguns to protect themselves from the angry proletariat. He didnâ€™t call me back. The New York Police Department has told me that â€œas a preliminary matterâ€ it believes some of the bankers I inquired about do have pistol permits. The NYPD also said it will be a while before it can name names.
While the guns may be used for self defense at home, New York State gun laws are very strict in allowing individuals other than police and security personal to conceal-and-carry weapons. So, as Karl Denninger of Market Ticker has pointed out, a banker may be able to protect himself in his home, but out on the streets they would still be an unarmed target for mobs looking for retribution if another “Black Friday” event were to occur.
It is probably just a matter of time before the high-dollar bankers use some of those taxpayer funded bonuses to hire personal security teams from the Blackwater Corporation.
Inquiring minds are asking why a banker would find it necessary to arm himself all of a sudden. He must be quite terrified that some hungry zombie prole will come banging down his door for some payback. Do some of these bankers know something that we don’t know? Perhaps some of them are in so deep that they realize the system itself is unstable and it is only a matter of time before it comes crashing down under the pressure of hyperinflation or hyperdeflation.