10 STEPS TO FURTHER YOUR UNDERSTANDING
1. Four cowboys in a room want to play poker. They will represent our economy. They have no chips; the chips represent money.
2. There is only one other person in the room. That person sets all the rules on poker chips; we'll call him the "banker". The banker wears a fine suit to give the illusion of legitimacy. The banker has special "attributes" - he has decided that he can create poker chips out of nothing more than the cowboy's "word" and some "collateral". Only the banker is allowed to create chips and he can create an unlimited amount. The banker charges the cowboys 10% interest on all chips created and borrowed for the game. The banker olny creates and loans chips when a cowboy pledges "collateral" to the banker; the banker keeps the collateral should the cowboy not be able to pay the interest charges incured by playing. There is a one hour limit to each game.
3. The Cowboys want chips with which to play poker; so each brings in their collateral:
a saddle / a 6-shooter / a horse / a pair of new boots
4. The banker takes their word or "promise to pay" and creates 10 chips for each cowboy. The chips are a loan.
5. Four cowboys = 40 chips created. Forty chips are in existence and ONLY forty chips. Yet, 44 are due.
NOTE: Before the first card is even dealt, there are 44 chips owed and only 40 to pay with. Think that point through. Think about what that means. Think about what is about to happen. Only 40 chips exist; yet, 44 are due.
6. The game begins. An hour later, at least one cowboy loses big and it's time to pay the banker.
7. One cowboy has no chips. Three cowboys pay the banker back the chips that they "borrowed". Each of the three cowboys who can pay, use the winnings from the "loser" to pay their interest due. One cowboy only has 11 chips, but at least he can pay off his debt. Another cowboy has 12 chips and he can pay the 11 owed and keep one chip for himself. The big winner has 17 chips and can keep 6 of them after paying the banker.
8. All the cowboys look at the one who lost and call him a bad poker player, or unlucky, or worse, and make a mental note to charge him more for pasture land, next season, seeing he is such a bad money manager. They will tell their friends too.
9. The "loser"? Well, the loser has no chips left. He lost it all. Then, the banker says he's sure sorry that things turned out that way, but he will have to take possession of the new boots that were put up for collateral. In addition, the banker informs him that he will no longer lend chips to him because he is a bad risk and has no collateral.
10. The other three cowboys want to play again because, well, it was fun and that's what cowboys do! They are so greedy that they will step over their friend who has just been scammed in a fraudulent transaction, in hopes of selfish gain, ignore the fact that they will end up just like him as the game continues and join others in treating him differently because they see themselves as "successful" instead of the easy marks that they have made themselves. So, the banker lends more chips and the losers furnish interest for the winners. This continues until the bank owns everything, closes down the game and puts all of his chips away.