Category Archives: Pirates of Manhattan

Read – The Pirates of Manhattan

A book study member commented that Barry James Dyke, author of Pirates of Manhattan, is a whiner. I had to chuckle because, indeed, he is NOT a fan of any financial tool except whole life insurance. In fact, Dyke says point blank, “A main purpose of this book is give the consumer ample evidence that shows we live in a shark-invested financial services economy and that permanent life insurance is a safe and secure financial oasis for your savings.” (p.21) But one not need read that far into the book to know Dyke’s bias because in the acknowledgements even before the introduction he thanks Bob Castiglione, “you are a brilliant man. The development of an economic model for financial planning is a chassis everyone needs. Your application of universal mathematics proves that most financial products, other than life insurance, are all subject to the ravages of inflation, taxation, lost opportunity costs, and loss of control and utility for the consumer.”(p.,xi) And in the introduction he states, "Economics, in the final analysis, is the study of how what limited resources we have are allocated. Our decision concerning our economic purchases should be to maximize the benefits we receive with our purchases, and the benefits received should exceed the amount we paid for something. In  regards to financial products, permanent life insurance maximizes economic benefits better than any other product in the marketplace. Unfortunately, this is something mainstream America has forgotten.” (p.xv) Of course, if you have never been exposed to the powerful asset that exists in this oldest of financial products, it doesn’t even sound inviting to read more of the book. However, if you are a student of economics or politics or history (that pretty much covers anyone who is intelligent) then it behooves you to read this book and learn the history of political decisions that have been made to favor a very few but with negative repercussions for the vast majority. Dyke points out that “Many financial products and concepts sold to the American consumer simply do not work over an extended period….They are not promoted because they work over the long haul for the consumer, but because they are extremely profitable to the financial institution that manufacture and market these products.” (p.xvi) He goes on to talk about A.L.W Williams who coined the phrase and help create blind belief in the strategy that one should “buy term and invest the difference.”  While Williams is now one of the richest men in America, he promoted a concept which does not work over the long haul. I especially value Dyke’s clear definition of the Federal Reserve System which he points out is neither federal nor does it have any reserves. It is a private corporation owned by commercial banks, it reports to no one and has never been audited. “The Federal Reserve System is an economic cartel of commercial banks as much as OPEC is a cartel for oil-producing countries.” (p.xviii) Dyke reminds us that the vast expansion of money and credit by the Federal Reserve cased overspeculation and the Crash of 1929, and the Fed’s subsequent contraction of the money supply during the 1930s caused the Great Depression.” Dyke rightly concludes that the Fed has actually operated as a bailout mechanism for Wall Street speculators.” (p.xvii) Finally, Dyke wants us to understand that if we do not take the time to learn about how the system has functioned over time, if we don’t study the history, the facts, and begin to comprehend what this means for us individually, then we will continue to ask questions such as, “Is this institution backed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)?” not realizing that the FDIC backs failed banks and it is the taxpayer who supports the FDIC. Thus, really, do you want the protection of the FDIC? Is that the question that matters? Bottom line, keep reading the book and join us on the 27th in Dallas if you can. Otherwise, post your comments!