News Reports from Inside the Financial Coup

November 1, 2009

DeGraw_David_bigpicBy David DeGraw, AmpedStatus Report

The past few days have been very revealing when it comes to the financial coup that has occurred here in the U.S. When we say financial coup, we’re not giving you hyperbole. We’re telling you the technical term for what has occurred.

Don’t take our word for it, investigate it for yourself. Here’s a special report we have compiled which features the most recent information available concerning the takeover:

#1. Memo to Financial

Investigators: Dig Deep

When the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission opened for business on September 17, it was a nonevent for the media. Leading newspapers brushed aside chairman Phil Angelides, the former California state treasurer, and his declaration of purpose — “uncovering the facts and providing an unbiased historical accounting of what brought our financial system and our economy to its knees.”

As Angelides put it, “The fuses for that cataclysm were undoubtedly lit years before. It is our job to diligently and doggedly follow those fuses to their origins.”

The press has moved on. Financial crisis was last year’s story. Didn’t the Treasury and Federal Reserve announce they have already turned things around? Hasn’t the president proposed a bunch of complicated reforms (boring!) for Congress to enact? Yes, but that is the problem. How can Washington reform the financial system when we still don’t know what happened?

We may know the broad outlines, but the landscape remains littered with unanswered questions and informed suspicions about who did what to produce the breakdown. The relevant facts are still buried in the files of Wall Street firms and the regulatory agencies that utterly failed as watchdogs.

The Angelides commission has the subpoena power to dig out secrets — from e-mails and private memos, and through testimony under oath “that can disclose political deal-making and ruinous financial strategies. Given the rush of events, the commission may be the public’s last, best chance to get at the truth of the matter.

Let’s “get at the truth of the matter.”

#2. The Wall Street Coup D’Etat

The most revealing political quote of the last year came… from the second-highest ranking Democratic Senator, Dick Durbin, who told a local radio station in April: “And the banks — hard to believe in a time when we’re facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created — are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place.”

The best Congressional floor speech of the last year on the financial crisis was this extraordinarily piercing five-minute revelation from Rep. Marcy Kaptur of Ohio on the Wall Street bailout and how the Congress is subservient to their dictates. The single most insightful article on the financial crisis was written by former IMF Chief Economist and current MIT Professor Simon Johnson in the May, 2009 issue of The Atlantic, when he argued that “the finance industry has effectively captured our government” and detailed how the U.S. has become very similar to failed emerging-market nations in both its political and economic culture.

OregonPeaceWorker09SkinnyLong.indd#3. Heated Press Debate

Over $83 billion for Health Care,

but Silence on at Least 20 Times

That Amount Gone to Wall Street

There is an odd disconnect between the furious public debate over health care reform, with its emphasis on the cost of an increased government role, and the nonexistent discussion about the far more expensive and largely secretive government program to bail out Wall Street. Why the agitation over the government spending $83 billion a year on health care when at least 20 times that amount has been thrown at the creators of the ongoing financial crisis without any serious public accountability? On Wednesday, the Wall Street Journal reported that employees of the financial industry that we taxpayers saved are slated to be paid a record $140 billion this year.

If you want to know who actually runs this country, just look at the phone logs, released by court order last week, revealing Geithner’s nearly constant calls to solicit the advice of the fat cats who caused the banking implosion. It’s the same as when he was chair of the Federal Reserve in New York, before Obama appointed him to his current job. Only back then, as he blithely ignored the impending financial meltdown, it was easier to have lunch with the bankers as well as to chat by phone.

In an earlier Freedom of Information exposé, The New York Times reported in April: “An examination of Mr. Geithner’s five years as president of the New York Fed, an era of unbridled and ultimately disastrous risk-taking by the financial industry, shows that he forged unusually close relationships with executives of Wall Street’s giant financial institutions. His actions, as a regulator and later a bailout king, often aligned with the industry’s interests and desires, according to interviews with financiers, regulators and analysts and a review of Federal Reserve records.”

Nothing has changed since then.Φ

[Editor’s Note: This lengthy article runs to 24 interesting subpoints.] Read more >>

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One Response to “ News Reports from Inside the Financial Coup ”

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