Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Signs of Plutocracy

On every front: derivatives regulation, the proposed Consumer Financial Product Agency, new limits on commodities trading, the administration's initial proposals have encountered overwhelming opposition from lobbyists and been eviscerated as they inch through Congress.


This agrees every other analysis I have seen. Obama and Geithner bark but so far have not bitten except in mostly harmless ways. Congressional leaders express outrage. Congress roars as if in childbirth with an elephant but seems to be bringing forth a relatively harmless mouse.

You want a reason why the bills to regulate banks are being gutted? Just look at the money the financial institutions give Democrats. Check out how much Goldman Sachs and the like have given Obama.

Was it Will Rogers who said he was tired of people criticizing Congress. Why, he said, we have the best Congress money can buy!

OK, I suppose this condemnation has to be qualified a little given the announcement just made that severe pay cuts have been ordered for some big banks -- but not Goldman Sachs and J. P. Morgan Chase, who have repaid their direct TARP funds. But they benefit from other government programs and guarantees that enable them to make big profits with little risk. So, I insist that the plutocracy is still largely intact and capable of great mischief to the masses of us average folks.

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