“You can observe a lot about this game just by watching.” — Yogi Berra
Yogi was talking about baseball, but I get the déjà vu all over again feeling while reading an account in the New York Times of the way POTUS twisted ‘Crat arms in Congress to pass a budget bill. Seems there’s a lovely provision in there that contains language –85 lines of text of which 70 were written by Citigroup — that essentially protects Wall Street banks with taxpayer funds when embarking on their riskiest maneuvers, the very kind that crashed the world’s markets in 2008 and cost a fortune in bailouts.
“In 2008, we learned the economic consequences of conducting derivatives trading in taxpayer-insured banks,” said Thomas Hoenig, vice chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, calling the repeal Congress is contemplating “illogical.”
The outrageous provision is gleefully backed by the banking industry, of course, and a majority of its paid lobbyists, also known as the Republican party. But not all ‘Pubs, in fact, Louisiana’s very conservative David Vitter partnered with Ohio ‘Crat Sherrod Brown to condemn the measure. “If Wall Street banks want to gamble, Congress should force them to pay for their losses and not put the taxpayers on the hook for another bailout,” the two wrote on Thursday to House and Senate leaders.
Your President and Vice President took to the telephones Thursday to rally ‘Crats in support of this measure, even while minority leader Nancy Pelosi worked against it. POTUS determined that getting giant budget bill passed was worth the cost of the provision. Say — isn’t he sup-posed to be some kind of anti-business socialist? He can’t even get that right!
The bill favors the nation’s four largest banks, which conduct over 90% of all the derivative trading in the US. It has the potential to backfire on taxpayers, recreating conditions that created the Great Recession that disproportionately impacted lower-income Americans, and further hollowed out the middle class. It has WRONG-O BUCKO written all over it, right there over where BHO plans to sign it into law.
So what do we observe by watching, Yogi?
- When it comes to who runs the country, the Big Money wins every time, no matter which political party’s pockets it’s lining.
- For all his glossy talk and glistening presentations, BHO and his administration understand themselves to be among the nation’s most powerful entities, and protect same whenever protection is needed.
- The only ones who care about this matter are the beneficiaries (the banks, their wealthy customers, and their constituents) and stray readers of the New York Times. The ones who are at risk of getting thoroughly screwed don’t follow news like this — and ‘Pubs distract them and keep them outraged with fables about illegal aliens, government seizing their guns, Ebola, Benghazi, and Hillary’s Fat Ass.
Meanwhile, we’re all looking forward to some great football this weekend, right?