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Still Doing God’s Work on Wall Street

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Posted on Nov 25, 2009
Geithner
AP / Jose Luis Magana

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner testifies last Thursday on financial regulatory reform before the Joint Economic Committee.

By Robert Scheer

Jail, anyone? Perhaps that’s too harsh, and at any rate premature, but is anyone ever going to be held accountable for the behind-the-scenes sweetheart deals that passed tens of billions of taxpayer dollars through the AIG shell game to the very banks that caused the financial meltdown? Or for the many other acts of double-dealing that left one out of three American homeowners owing much more than their houses were worth while the folks who swindled them were rewarded with hundreds of billions in public money?

Undoubtedly not, since the same folks who are most culpable wrote the laws that made this, and the other scams at the heart of the banking collapse, perfectly legal. And guess what? They’re back at work in the government, writing the new laws that will, they claim, prevent us from being had once again. As a telling example of that process at work, check the official response of the Department of Treasury to the devastating report by the special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), Neil M. Barofsky, titled “Factors Affecting Efforts to Limit Payments to AIG Counterparties.” The main factor was that Timothy Geithner followed the lead of Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd “I’m Doing God’s Work” Blankfein in crowding the lifeboats with bankers.

Geithner, now treasury secretary, was previously the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRBNY), where he negotiated the deal to pay Goldman Sachs and the other top banks in full to cover their bad bets on securitized mortgages. Barofsky’s report concluded that Geithner’s scheme represented a “backdoor bailout” for the financial hustlers at the center of the market fiasco. Noting that Geithner denies that was his intention, the report states, “Irrespective of their stated intent, however, there is no question that the effect of FRBNY’s decisions—indeed, the very design of the federal assistance to AIG—was that tens of billions of dollars of Government money was funneled inexorably and directly to AIG’s counterparties.”

Not surprisingly, the Treasury Department that Geithner now heads defended his actions in not forcing “haircuts” on the full dollar-for-dollar payoff by AIG to the banks while he was at the New York Fed: “The government could not unilaterally impose haircuts on creditors, and it would not have been appropriate for the government to pressure counterparties to accept haircuts by threatening to retaliate in some way through its regulatory power.”

Nonsense, argues Eliot Spitzer, who as New York attorney general was way ahead of the curve in challenging Wall Street arrogance. Writing in Slate on Monday, Spitzer points out: “Pressuring Goldman and the other counterparties to offer concessions would have forced them to absorb the consequences of making suspect deals with an insurance company that was essentially a Ponzi scheme.”

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The Ponzi scheme was based on the collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) in which the bankers traded and which AIG had insured with the credit default swaps (CDSs) that they sold but failed to back with adequate funding. Now Geithner’s Treasury concedes that AIG “should never have been allowed to escape tough, consolidated supervision.” But none of AIG’s scams were regulated, nor were any of the others at the center of the larger financial debacle, because of laws pushed through Congress by Geithner’s boss, Lawrence Summers, when they both were in the Clinton administration. Specifically, they prevented regulation of those opaque CDOs and CDSs that would come to derail the world’s economy.

As the inspector general’s report stated: “In 2000, the [Clinton administration-backed] Commodity Futures Modernization Act (CFMA) … barred the regulation of credit default swaps and other derivatives.” Why did the financial geniuses of the Clinton administration seek to prevent that obviously needed regulation? Because the Clintonistas believed the Wall Street guys knew what they were doing and that what was good for them was good for us lesser folk. As Summers, who is the top economic adviser in the Obama White House, put it in congressional testimony back then: “The parties to these kinds of contracts are largely sophisticated financial institutions that would appear to be eminently capable of protecting themselves from fraud and counterparty insolvencies.”

Sounds nonsensical today: The inspector general’s report notes that AIG, because of the deregulatory law that Summers and Geithner pushed through, was “able to sell swaps on $72 billion worth of CDOs to counterparties without holding reserves that a regulated insurance company would be required to maintain.” But why, then, is Summers once again running the show with Geithner when both have made careers of exhibiting total contempt for the public interest? Because there is no accountability for the high rollers of finance, no matter who happens to be president. 

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s book,
“The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street.”


Keep up with Robert Scheer’s latest columns, interviews, tour dates and more at www.truthdig.com/robert_scheer.



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By jimch, November 25, 2009 at 10:41 am Link to this comment

Ardee:
Let me assure you I’m not “anti” anything or anybody. I just found it strange that an ethnic group of 1.5% of the population has over 8% of our elected lawmakers, whereas African Americans who make up nearly 13% of the population have less than that. And Hispanics even less than either.
There’s no question that unscrupulous, solipsistic,  unethical folks occupy seats on some boards, some of whom I’ve known. But most were straight shooters. Now, since retiring 15 years ago, I’ve been pretty much avoiding association with those types.

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By the worm, November 25, 2009 at 10:28 am Link to this comment

Nassim Taleb ( I believe, it was him) said, ‘”In the 1990s, the French Government
took over the French banks; in 2008, the American banks took over the American
Government.” Hearing cries of ‘Congress undermining the Fed’ and fear of
‘Government overregulation of the financial system’ truly make you sick. When the
Fed can, upon a weekend, transfer private debt to public debt in the amounts of
(you pick) $3 trillion to $9 trillion dollars, who has, in fact, been ‘undermined’?
Yes, the American banks have taken over the Government - and, if we vote
Democrat (who brought us the inadequate stimulus and the Republican holdovers
in financial policy) or we vote Republican (who brought us $10 trillion in debt for
Iraq and began the ‘bailout’) - we are screwed. It is passed time for other parties
to enter the fray, and it will be a long hard fight to have our government back,
but, increasingly, I believe we must. This status quo is a disaster for American
ideals - beyond recognition - hopefully not beyond redemption.

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By drbhelthi, November 25, 2009 at 10:27 am Link to this comment

Clinging to the belief that “we can trust our government” without realizing what this phrase meant, is the downfall of the USA citizenry.  Meanwhile, the overtaking of the media by the CIA and the slow but sure propagandizing of information dissiminated via TV, led to the destruction of the US Constitution by the family Bush via “executive decree;” the various Patriot Act pieces of legislation, eventually approved by dumbfounded members of the US Congress.

Naturally, it is very useful for the NAZI-types who are showing Americans “who is boss,” to have expert propagandists to scapegoat every honest, factual comment to releases such as Truthdig.  It is easy to discern who the NAZI and AIPAC pimps are, as they immediately scapegoat all truthful commenters, and make such distorted claims as “anglo-saxons rule the USA,” which naive´ fold tend to believe. 

The German scientist who told me in 2008, “Doc, certain German families have always know the true identity of the 41st US president,” knows the real story, passed on by his family.  Certainly, all families, their relatives and the offspring of the families shown in the picture at:  http://www.proliberty.com/observer/20070405.htm  also know the truth.  Meanwhile, the NAZI and AIPAC pimpery do their best to maintain the artificial concept of “conspiracy theorists” and scapegoat all realists who disagree.  Increased realism will begin to appear in Jan 2010, a bit late for Americans to support the truth.  And the millions of paid propagandist pimps who think they are on the “winning team.?”  Are they gonna be surprised.

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By FreeWill, November 25, 2009 at 10:25 am Link to this comment

liecatcher,  Mentioned ” Bilderberg Group” as the evil empire controlling the show. 
But please… let’s not leave out the “Ttilaterial Commission” David Rockefeller’s club who have pretty much ruled the roost here in the US since Carter. If you want to talk greedy, sinister, Basterd Bankers and Thieves start there.

They just hire people like Obama to keep the show going to entertain us and keep us bickering amongst our selves…  Oh! you thought he was elected…. Guess you were watching the show too closely to see the people behind the curtain doing their stuff.

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By BenL8, November 25, 2009 at 10:23 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

AIG insured over $47 trillion in CDSs. The net worth of the U.S. in 2004 was just over $50 trillion. (Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances) Totally incompetent is what Summers, bankers, regulators, and everyone were. Can’t we nationalize these failed banks? Jail time? Raise taxes on huge wealth and income. The top one percent earn more than the bottom 60% and own more than the bottom 90%. That’s the cause of economic downturn, the producer/consumers are not paid adequately to buy what they produce. Level income rewards through taxes, unions, EITC, public jobs to tighten the job market. So much foolishness on these commentaries.

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By Leefeller, November 25, 2009 at 9:59 am Link to this comment

Experts such as economists are the only ones who yell   when they are really being screwed, most the common folk are used to it.

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By GW=MCHammered, November 25, 2009 at 9:42 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Time for Badges to about-face, march toward Wally
Street and malicious CapitalizeItAll Hill.

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By WriterOnTheStorm, November 25, 2009 at 9:41 am Link to this comment

This is likely to become another of Mr Scheer’s lost causes, like trying to hold Bush accountable for his lies
leading up to the Iraq invasion. I applaud Scheer, but the problem goes much deeper than the banksters and their
Potomac cronies. Everything that’s happened in the meltdown and the subsequent bailout is exactly what one
would expect in a society that has embraced and internalized de-facto plutocracy, laissez-faire anarcho-
capitalism, and social darwinism.

How else can one explain what Matt Taibbi calls the peasant mentality that holds us in its thrall? All those khaki-
colored town-hall dupes equating single-payer health care with Hitler and the Nazi’s provide ample evidence of
the depth and breadth of these poisonous ideas. Where are the armies of anti-bank/bailout protesters?

Why is it apparently okay to allow the very people whose irresponsible and venal behavior visited so much havoc,
to simply sail off into the sunset on yachts we payed for? The answer lies within each of us. This is a nation in
dire need of a little introspection. What starts on the street or at the dinner table as seemingly innocuous core
beliefs like “we’re a nation of go-getters” soon metastasizes into the seductive myth of the meritocracy. After all,
why should us “go-getters” give those lazy bums a free-ride? Mantras are repeated: “I earned everything I’ve got,
why should I let some commy bastards take it?” But once the algebra of meritocracy is accepted, it’s only logical
to conclude that all those who are wealthier must be, ipso facto, superior human beings.

Now, if all of this sounds like a gross (if not grotesque) oversimplification, I would simply ask, if it’s so
oversimplified, then where is the meaningful debate? Why do journalists so often insist that what goes on in the
world of investment banking is above their, and by extension our, understanding? More generally, why are
glorified grifters like George Soros or out-and-out buffoons like The Donald accorded such respect and status?
Are we just stupid, or are we clinging to an erroneous belief system in the face of overwhelming contradictory
evidence?

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By Amon Drool, November 25, 2009 at 9:37 am Link to this comment

it’s all very fine that robert scheer reminds us pretty much on a weekly basis that our gov’t has been captured by the financial “industry.”

but then he ends his most recent reminder with this: “But why…is Summers once again running the show with Geithner when both have made careers of exhibiting total contempt for the public interest? Because there is no accountability for the high rollers of finance, no matter who happens to be president.”

was their at least some accountability for financial high rollers when the roosevelts held the presidency?  scheer told amy goodman last week that he likes everything about barack obama.  the presidency does have some constraints (and that’s a good thing), but it also gives its holder some room for action.  there are some guys out there—joe stiglitz and william black come to mind—who could probably help obama put us in the right direction economically.  would obama be willing to change over to people like that?  probably not…those who have engaged with him in his new-found love of golf describe his game as being risk-averse.

remember the Nation christmas card during the bush the lesser years?  condi rice is sitting at a piano playing a tune with dick cheney sitting close by.  in dick’s lap is a puppet figure of bush.  substitute summers for cheney and obama for bush and u got what is going on in this administration.

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By ardee, November 25, 2009 at 9:20 am Link to this comment

jimch, November 25 at 1:03 pm #

Ardee says: Most sane folks certainly are aware that the real rulers of this nation are almost exclusively white anglo saxon protestants in fact.

Since he wrote that I did a bit of checking and found these people didn’t fit that category: Emmanuel,Geithner,Summers,Rubin,Bernanke,Greenspan,T.Friedman,Krugman, are all Jewish, along with 13 senators and 31 representatives.

I still insist that my contention is truth, while you insist on conflating soldiers with generals. You may disguise an antisemitic bend or may be simply too lazy to do your homework.

The fact of the matter is that any perusal of the BoD’s of the major corporations clearly show the same names over and over again, names that reek of coming over on the Mayflower, names that one finds in club memberships that refuse entry to Jews, Catholics, Blacks or Asians.

Thirteen Senators out of 100, thirty one of four hundred thirty five Congresspersons. Do your damn homework sonny or dont try and run with the adults/

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By Leefeller, November 25, 2009 at 9:13 am Link to this comment

No Mans Land,

Buy American (Made in USA) if one can find it!  Local is important, community should be a part of peoples lives, may work if one can stand their neighbors!

Possibly, one will have to bite their tongue and attend local KKK meetings and bring some matches as a peace offering, all a part of bonding and belonging.

Manipulations of politics can be disenchanting, even at the local levels, if one has the stomach or inclinations, things may be attempted and done locally, a premise one can embrace easier and directly, compared to the grand manipulations called to attention in Robert Scheer’s article!

People should know bending over and spreading them is not always necessary, just being aware may be enough!

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By jimch, November 25, 2009 at 9:03 am Link to this comment

Ardee says: Most sane folks certainly are aware that the real rulers of this nation are almost exclusively white anglo saxon protestants in fact.

Since he wrote that I did a bit of checking and found these people didn’t fit that category: Emmanuel,Geithner,Summers,Rubin,Bernanke,Greenspan,T.Friedman,Krugman, are all Jewish, along with 13 senators and 31 representatives.

Since most of the above deal in some way with the president, I’m not so sure what you’re saying is correct, especially dealing with the fiscal picture and the connections with Goldman-Sachs,et.al. on Wall Street.

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By don knutsen, November 25, 2009 at 9:02 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How would they be held accountable ? The only people who have been hurt are just the vast majority of americans and we have no voice anymore in goverment. We like to pretend that we do, but the only people who are getting their way in the halls of congress are the people and corporations that are in charge. Our so-called elected representitives just cycle between being lobbyists for industry, into congress, and back to industry. How could we expect any of them to do our bidding if their prime motivation is cementing a lucrative job as a lobbyist imediately after leaving office ? Its ludicrous .This last Wall St. bailout and the subsequent complete lack of accountability should’ve made that very clear. This is not a political issue. This is a class war taking place and its been a steady erosion of a democracy that started with saint reagan, pushed much further by HW Bush, helped along further by Clinton and cemented into place under GW Bush. There is no longer a reason to pretend we live in the representitive goverment the founding fathers put in place. The congress needs to be purged and the individuals ( Summers & Giethner ) who gave away the billions as well as the CEO’s of Goldman Sachs and the others who the taxpayers money without any accountability need to be held accountable. There is no fear of recrimination in people who amass the millions these types have. There is no need to have a plan that extends beyond their insanely lucrative stock options and severence package deals they cement in place from the onset. Greed has become just another commodity held by the wealthy and in the words of someone who belongs in that privaleged club, Henry Kissinger, we are all ” just useless eaters”. I think this is going to take a massive revolt by the people on a scale not seen yet in america. It dosen’t need to be violent, just a refusal to cooperate in a system that is working against the interests of the people, its time our representitives start really feeling the heat for allowing this to continue as they have for so long.

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By coco, November 25, 2009 at 8:59 am Link to this comment

Good idea, lets start with Bush and Paulson and their top secret maneuver. Then Bush can be handy for his war crime trial and public hanging. If anyone needs to go to jail its the republican party for a dailicktion of duty.

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By no mans land, November 25, 2009 at 8:59 am Link to this comment

glider,

you/we are the mechanism. no populist movement ever succeded without the individual recognizing his or her immediate role and responsibility to act. waiting for the power structure to give up its power is like expecting a drug cartel to embrace democracy and the rule of law. we can wish in one hand and crap in another and we all know which one will get filled first. it is up to us to start going to city council meetings and making our views known. we choose, mostly, what we consume. we first deny them power with the choices we make and second, through the political movments we help build. if not us, then who?

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By glider, November 25, 2009 at 8:35 am Link to this comment

No_Man’s_Land
Yeah, sign me up.  The only thing lacking is a reasonable mechanism for achieving these solutions.

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By jsper, November 25, 2009 at 8:33 am Link to this comment

And why not jail time?? Too harsh? Are you mad? Why is white color crime considered acceptable and yet, some little guy selling a couple of drugs on the street gets put away for years? I dont get it. Is selfishness and greed at the expense of other people’s well being so admired in the spirit of ‘capitalism’, that anything you can get away with is acceptable?
Great values we have in this country.

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By as, November 25, 2009 at 8:20 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Bravo Mr. Scheer!

Judging by the content of some comments to your superb column, it is an act of utmost courage (courage, that most of us anonymous writers of these comments do not possess!) to write what has been published today, and many times in the past, and to conclude with this bold pronouncement: “But why, then, is Summers once again running the show with Geithner when both have made careers of exhibiting total contempt for the public interest? Because there is no accountability for the high rollers of finance, no matter who happens to be president.”

Not only has the “total contempt for the public interest,” been successfully practiced by the arrogant powerful-rich elite that literally owns our government; the same elite, that according to Thomas Frank (2008 book “the Wrecking Crew”) uses and abuses “the famous ‘revolving door’ by which government employees move into the private sector and vice versa,” has not been held accountable for the tragic consequences of their action; instead, to this day, people who simply tell it like it is, are being punished by the powerful elite, even though ours is supposed to be the democratic society!

When on November 11, 2009, the NYT published the news that Lou Dobbs is “leaving” CNN, I went back to read his 2006 book titled: “War on the Middle Class -How the Government, Big Business, and Special Interest Groups Are Waging War on the American Dream…” In the Introduction to the book, Mr. Dobbs writes:

“If ever there were a time for TRUTH in America, it is now. For more than two hundred years the American middle class has been the core of a work ethic, a tradition of values, and a belief that EVERY CITIZEN is an important part of a greater good. This heritage has made the USA a unique nation with shared goals and ideals. Our middle class is America’s foundation…But ours is becoming increasingly divided society…our national values are increasingly challenged by corporatism, consumerism and ethnocentric multiculturalism…At the time when our nation should be investing strongly in our middle class…we are allowing our biggest businesses to ignore their social responsibility and our government to squander (countless) $billions and accumulate enormous debt…while corporations are paying lower taxes than ever before…the middle class is forced to shoulder ever more of the tax burden…(our middle class) is becoming a class of people with uncertain job prospects, insecure financial future…as a nation we seem to be in the grip of a national ennui, a numb and passive acceptance of the status quo…we are on the verge of not only loosing our government, of the people, for the people, and by the people, but also standing idly by while the American Dream becomes a national nightmare for all of us…”
As a liberal Democrat, I totally agree with with Mr. Lou Dobbs, a conservative Republican, and wish him all the best in his future endeavors!

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By no mans land, November 25, 2009 at 8:17 am Link to this comment

PAKelly:

Solutions:

1) Stop supporting either of the two major parties with votes, labor or money.
2) Remove control of currency creation from Federal Reserve Inc. and put it back under the Treasury where it was constitutionally intended to be.
3) Reform Campaign Finance so that all donations are funneled into a general fund that is evenly distributed to the major candidates and end the right of corporations to influence the political process.
4) Reform Campaign laws to allow multiple parties
5) Break up the major media conglomerates; support only independently owned media. We must begin having a national discussion about the state of democracy, or the lack thereof, which we will not get from corporate news.
6) End State Corporatism as an economic and political system. This starts by not referring to our political system as a “democracy” or a “republic,” but a neo-feudal corporate state that does not recognize individual productivity, health, privacy, property, or sovereignty.
7) Start putting the heat on state and local political systems to take the initiative on major issues by building/participating in local advocacy groups and information campaigns. Ideally, these would evolve into viable alternative parties, while maintianing pressure at the national level. Top-down alone is the least effective and least organic type of change. For example: demand that your city end the practice of planned obsolescence. Fix the roads right the first time so they last more than 4 seasons and dedicate future funds to community / environmental improvement and support programs.
8) Encourage all people to adopt a new simplicity in life by supporting local business, countering the culture of consumption, and environmental responsibility. Boycott corporate products whenever possible. For example, instead of buying multiple presents for someone produced overseas for corporate profit, buy them one locally produced present. (My preference is to support local organic farmers. After all, they make great jellies!)

I believe these are reforms and platforms that can find consensus from both the left and the right and be fused into a new populism that is actually good for the people. It will be long haul, but it must be done.

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By Kay Johnson, November 25, 2009 at 8:00 am Link to this comment

“His [Obama] appointments of Summers and Geithner, as well as Gates in Defense were bitter disappointments to many on the left I imagine but they were not so surprising, I think, to those of us who warned, early in the Obama campaign, that this cult of personality was no way to select a leader.”—Ardee

I agree! I did NOT vote for Obama for several reasons, and I listened carefully—wanting to believe, but for me, wanting, or wishing, is NOT enough. I pulled the lever for Nader.

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By the worm, November 25, 2009 at 7:54 am Link to this comment

Obama’s Treasury Department says: “The government could not unilaterally
impose haircuts on creditors, and it would not have been appropriate for the
government to pressure counterparties to accept haircuts by threatening to
retaliate in some way through its regulatory power.” Obama’s administration does:
Create $ 9,000,000,000 in taxpayer debt to cover $ 9,000,000,000 of financial
industry profligacy – and says ‘that’s appropriate’? If the Obama administration
cannot see and address the disaster resulting from this, they are truly beyond
redemption.

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By RAE, November 25, 2009 at 7:40 am Link to this comment

ardee: ” Most sane folks certainly are aware that the real rulers of this nation are almost exclusively white anglo saxon protestants in fact.”

Interesting claim… begging several questions.

Where is the research defining the number of “sane folks” in total for you to come up with a majority?

Where is the evidence to support your contention about the “real rulers of this nation?”

I’m just “funnin’ ya” ardee. I use the same hyperbole when I get going.

I’m not a “bible” believin’ person but some lines attributed to the “good book” are as true today as they were when scratched in stone. One of those is “MONEY (or the lust for it) IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL.”

Those on the Wall Streets of this world do little else than pursue a LUST FOR MONEY with more determination than Olympic athletes struggle for gold. To me, these people, as a group, are engaged in the most odious and nauseating of all professions. The very notion that anyone can claim to be “working” and “contributing” when all they’re doing is shoving paper around and manipulating data on computers, to their own benefit, is ludicrous. Truth and honesty and fairness are words and concepts that are completely absent from their ethics and practises.

My frustration is that I don’t have “the answer.” Clearly we need financial institutions large enough to collect the sums required to underwrite the building of infrastructure and other massive public endeavors. Equally as clearly the culture that exists “at the top” in any of those institutions is about as corrupt and dishonest as is possible to exist.

So “small” isn’t good enough, and “big” isn’t the answer either.

It’s sure depressing to be caught up in this cesspool of thievery and deception. All I can do is make sure I’m not consciously part of it. Which, of course, makes me a full-time LOSER. At least I can sleep at night.

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By Ouroborus, November 25, 2009 at 6:56 am Link to this comment

ardee, November 25 at 9:28 am #
Good one.

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By the tshirt doctor, November 25, 2009 at 6:13 am Link to this comment

what i don’t understand is why more people aren’t upset at this.

why?

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By PAKelly, November 25, 2009 at 6:03 am Link to this comment

In truth I had no idea that such bigotry, prejudice and hatefulness would be present on a smart, liberal-minded blog as this one.  It’s pretty shocking, really.

Maybe if we could stop throwing blame around for a few minutes and start using our minds in a more positive way we might actually accomplish something other than just spewing rubbish.

Anyone?

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By drbhelthi, November 25, 2009 at 5:43 am Link to this comment

Marvelous summary.
When we review US history since SS General Gehlin reorganized the OSS into the CIA, at the end of WWII, especially after a Mr. GHW BushSr assumed control of the CIA, a pattern emerges.

When we review what USGov presidents have done, since a Mr. James Carter from Georgia, versus what they have said, we see the results. A bankrupt USA, headed for real disaster in Jan 2010, with surprises for all Americans who “disagree.”  Surprises for all who believe the carefully- promulgated, “conspiracy theory” B.S.

Has Mister Hussein Obama fulfilled any of his pre-election, campaign promises?  Will he fulfill any of them?  If he sincerely tries, the machine that put him into the puppetry position will send him to join JFKSr, JFKJr, and many others who deviated from the direction of the NAZI/false- zionist machine. Since he knows too much, if he isn´t on the Red List or the Blue List, for sure he is on the List of a certain senator who is calling the shots for the USA.

Anyone read up on the Mena, Ark, investigation?

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By montanawildhack, November 25, 2009 at 5:33 am Link to this comment

May I suggest a simple solution to this problem…

How about we replace everyone that Mr. Scheer mentions in his column with Irish Catholics….  Granted they tend to be better drinkers than financiers but they’ve got one thing going for them that these other cats do Not: they believe in an afterlive and atonement…  They are less apt to screw over people in this life because they think that Jesus is keeping tabs on them…  This current batch of crooks, on the other hand, believe anything goes in this life cause there ain’t nothin’ waiting for them on the other side of the river….

So another simple solution to what some believe is a complex problem… You’re welcome…..

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By liecatcher, November 25, 2009 at 5:31 am Link to this comment

THE GOOD, THE BAD, THE UGLY

“God Bless the USA” is an American patriotic song
written by country musician Lee Greenwood.

Barack Obama’s former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright
Jr:  “God damn America”


Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd “I’m Doing God’s Work”
Blankfein


flickervertigo, November 25 at 6:22 am god and ten
dollar gas: “God damn Israel”

Folks let’s enjoy this freedom to hate while it
lasts.

With obamageddon running full speed ahead, our days
are numbered.

Unfortunately, Robert Scheer left out an important
thread connecting the miscreants;

they are members of the fascist BILDERBERG GROUP
which has members from

around the world representing all religions united in
their goal of world domination.

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By ardee, November 25, 2009 at 5:28 am Link to this comment

If one might be heard over the strident voice of our latest troll…....

Most sane folks understand that it is not the religious persuasion of anyone that results in the current economic crisis and blatant theft of our nation’s assets. Most sane folks understand that the sway big business has over our decision making process is not anything new to this administration or to this century in fact. Most sane folks certainly are aware that the real rulers of this nation are almost exclusively white anglo saxon protestants in fact.

Most sane folks that is…..

The blatancy of the thefts is remarkable to some but expected by most here I suspect. The fact that our President may, or may not, be a well meaning person is subject to debate. That he has absolutely no qualification or the experience to get this job done seems a firm fact. His appointments of Summers and Geithner, as well as Gates in Defense were bitter disappointments to many on the left I imagine but they were not so surprising ,I think, to those of us who warned, early in the Obama campaign, that this cult of personality was no way to select a leader.

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By flickervertigo, November 25, 2009 at 4:25 am Link to this comment

apparently we’re sposed to adjust our context: anything goes if we’re defending western what-passes-for civilization.

we’re supposed to ignore the fact that the context is being defined by ashkenazi racial supremacists.

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By glider, November 25, 2009 at 4:12 am Link to this comment

Life in prison is called for in a just society for racketeering at this level and I commend Sheer for keeping at these crooks.  But obviously there will be no accountability in this corrupt government.  Inspite of Summers disingenuous statement he was correct.  These institutions were sophisticated enough to protect themselves, but did so by stealing our money and futures and institutionalizing heads they win tails we loose.  It did not take Obama long to exercise this public betrayal by appointing these criminals and continuing the ripoff.  The “fail” part was over-fixed and the “too big” part is now much worse.  The opportunity to fix this mess, was available during the immediate crisis had there been an honest leader in charge.  That opportunity has past.  But heck Obama sure is a nice guy!

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By PAKelly, November 25, 2009 at 4:11 am Link to this comment

Geitner and Summers have to go and the sooner Obama realizes it, the better.  Another round of “Won’t Get Fooled Again”, please.  This time even louder and longer.

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By C.Curtis.Dillon, November 25, 2009 at 2:48 am Link to this comment

I’ve concluded that the economics profession, like so many other “clubs” in this world, is so closed and myopic that they will never allow change.  Anyone who has new ideas is automatically excluded by their belief in the NIH (Not Invented Here) mentality that one experiences everywhere experts congregate.  Economists believe only they understand what is happening in the world’s economy and that they have a handle on the issues.  These last few years have shown us just how impotent and clueless they really are.  However, our political and business elite are so enthralled with them that no chance exists for anyone with alternative ideas to ever find traction.

Geitner and Summers will run this country into the ground and the elite will applaud them all the way into hell.  We can only hang on and pray the landing is not too violent.

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By flickervertigo, November 25, 2009 at 2:22 am Link to this comment

god and ten dollar gas

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