Sit On It, Ponzi

Was Social Security always a Ponzi scheme? I mean, did the Founding Fathers of our nation know, as it was being set up, that it would one day self-implode? I’m sure some of them did — clear thinkers that knew the fallout was nothing more than being delayed. Banking on the fact that maybe something would happen and clear it all up, but as long as Dad got to his retirement, the next guy could do the clean up.

So what is needed now? I think it needs to be some unexpected event to upset the whole apple cart. Not necessarily stopping the rotation process, but simply starting the newest Ponzi all over again.

Like when Henry Ford started producing cars in 1903. It is a little known fact that one of the problems plaguing our country at that time was the constant presence and odor of horse manure.

There were governmental committees being formed and analysts debating how and what we could do to “remediate the roadside décor.”

See? Even the simple use of horse transportation had become a Ponzi scheme that couldn’t be sustained.

But voila, the committees never got to decisions, because before the horse manure piled up too high, the introduction of the automobile and the immediate contagion of sales all but removed the horse as a mode of transportation by the end of the decade, thereby removing the problem.

So the problem of the manure became solved by a bolt of lightning that no one saw coming.

Funny though, huh? Even to this day our problem is with removing large amounts of horse manure before we find a good, equitable solution.

Ron Ciancutti is the Purchasing Manager for Cleveland Metroparks. He is not on Facebook, but he can be reached at

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