The collapse of the silver market meant countless losses for speculators. The Hunt brothers declared bankruptcy. By 1987 their liabilities had grown to nearly $2.5 billion against assets of $1.5 billion. In August of 1988 the Hunts were convicted of conspiring to manipulate the market. The economic meltdown in the US banking sector has brought oil to 65 dollars a barrel proving my earlier contention, that it was a handful of US companies called the paper refiners dealing in oil futures that had manipulated the oil prices artificially, and not the Arabs. It is these companies and their rapacious greed that held the world to ransom making us pay these exorbitant and unreal prices. The US Government failed the world in not waking up to the reality and turning off the money supply of these rogue traders. The Oil prices showed the vulnerability of any commodity to speculation if unrestricted funds are allowed to persons intent on controlling the prices of that commodity. With electronic banking available, and the ability to move huge funds, this was a disaster waiting to happen. Whether it was pork bellies or tin futures someone with deep enough pockets could try it. Throughout the business world gamblers have tried their hand at using huge funds to beat the system. Many a coffee plantation was lost on the 'double up' system on roulette. Soon the gamblers realized it was better to gamble on cornering the crop.  The last such effort was by the Hunt Brothers trying to corner the Silver market, and almost succeeding till the plug was pulled by Volker raising the interest rates, 'Of even greater significance, Paul Volker had been installed as the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, and Volker was determined to get runaway inflation under control. The Chairman abruptly raised interest rates, thus soaking up the excess liquidity which had helped fuel the silver boom.' (Silver Monthly). This forced the Hunts into liquidating their silver holdings, known as the Great silver bust in 1980, and filing for bankruptcy, ending their dream of silver domination of the world. The American business world has many such stories, and 2008 is another example of the capitalist at his rapacious best. This was a case of unlimited lending, and the money markets led by the Wall Street were offering huge amounts to speculators who required more and more funds to keep delivering on their dazzling returns. Wall Street investors were on a roll, with no let up in sight. As the old dictum states Everything that goes up must come down, it did , and took banks down and many honest people with it. The US Government should be faulted for not averting the situation before it had reached such punishing heights, and of all countries the US had already dealt with these situations before, and has Nobel prize winning economists in its system (including the new winner) who had warned against just these crises. At heart is the cornering of the oil futures by the Paper Refiners, who raised the price to 147 $ a barrel, which by all counts was 70 $ above the real price - 65$ the price where it has settled. These refiners never saw a drop of oil let alone refine it. But they cleared huge profits for themselves and for the producers, who in reality were not part of the scam. The reality is that in the History of the World no commodity affects the peoples of the world nor touches so many lives as the high price of oil. School children in their busses, mothers commuting to the supermarket, airline passengers, cargo on ships, transport of food items to the markets, everything. Many companies (airlines) went into bankruptcy due to unaffordable fuel. If the OPEC countries, had been responsible they would have been pilloried, and the US may have launched an attack on them as in the case of Iraq, for that was indeed a war for oil. However the US market players have not been punished, for causing such a huge loss to billions of people for over two years. Assuming 50 $ a barrel at 20 million barrels a day, is 1 billion dollars a day in excess payments for oil. It does not for a moment matter who also benefited, but the entire peoples of the world paid the price. The real culprits got away, and the US still affords them protection when in fact they should be incarcerated. The US officials must also be punished for their allowing the manipulation in such a brazen manner, causing hardship across the continents. It will not be difficult to tie Dick Cheney into the loop, for there is very little Mr. Cheney does not know about oil. We are a third world country, and are not effected by the swings of Wall Street, but our development has been set back a decade, and has caused more poverty than a war. The American Government must answer to their own citizens, and peoples of the world for this devastating economic crime. If in 1988 the Hunts were convicted of conspiring to manipulate the Silver market. The paper refiners deserve worse - far worse. For their greed caused more damage to many more people, and will go down in history as the mother of all robberies.