Should we label today's hedge funds, pension funds, university endowment funds and oil rich sovereign funds as robber barons? Are they to join Andrew Carnegie, John D. Rockefeller, J.P. Morgan and Jay Gould on the list of giants who earned enormous profits as they relentlessly and with questionable actions reshaped American industry and finance and in doing so gave rise to many federal regulations and antitrust controls?
If we look at commodity derivatives and in particular oil, prices for which have doubled since early last year, we do find a number of institutions, not individuals, that are dangerous derivative terrorist barons. They are accumulating wealth that would astonish the robber barons of our prior century. With care only for unbelievable million dollar and billion dollar profits they are raising fears on the part of every person and almost every corporation here at home and throughout the entire world.