Thursday, March 19, 2009

Worst of the Worst's Crimes Continue

It's been a frenzied few days, and I had the privilege of watching a live performance yesterday starring one Ed Liddy that was truly star quality. The brouhaha about bonus payments is so well known, forgive me if I don't go into it. The crux of the matter is that we have Liddy telling us all that that phrase from Camelot, 'the best and the brightest' is supposed to invoke respect that will convince us we owe something to the perpetrators of our economic demise. If we don't pay outrageous bonuses, they might hold their breath until they turn blue, and this time we will really be sorry.

What is at the core of this myth, that the worst financial manipulations in history ought to be financed by the taxpayers they cheated, is the presentation of economics as profoundly beyond the facilities of the ordinary taxpayer - me and you. If we had all run our own affairs into the ground, maybe that might be believable. I didn't, and I know that if you did it was on the advice of financial reporters who are shilling for the mogul horde. We taxpayers are regarded as useful as long as we work hard for a living, and just believe that the financial community - that makes our production into a faraway ground where their fantasy money begins - is essential while we are not. If we just accept and trust in our economic manipulators, everything will be fine. Sadly, nothing is fine, and won't be for a long time to come.

The least productive element of our society has proved to be the inventive faculty - called entrepreneurship - that has produced worthless bundles of sham mortgages that the financial community has used to make itself obscenely wealthy. The work that produces real value has been increasingly pushed off into wage slavery, while the moguls insisted that everyday work is not worth the paper our money is no longer printed on.

Eight years of power given over to this fantasy has produced disaster.

At the core of the disaster is transfer of wealth from the worker to the financier. Instead of value, we have 'consumer confidence', based on the concept that if we just can be induced to believe their mantra, wealth will result. Wealth will go where it is earned, to those actors on the stage of financial drama.

This drama has a killer ending, and that's where we are now, the worst economy since the 1920's.

While the blowup takes public attention away from the regulatory crisis we have been through, an effort is on to use this crisis to make it permanent. Former Secretary Paulson has been at work for awhile to bring every regulation into one 'independent' agency. The action of the Fed recently - representing itself as responsible and public interested while isolating congress and the executive branch from its work with AIG - should tell you all you need to know about the purpose of this proposal. From its taking no action to pass on knowledge to congress and the executive branch made way for the payout of huge bonuses to the worst of the worst, we can see the purpose of the Paulson proposal. A single agency put together by our financial community would embody again the agents of deregulation of the industry that has proven disastrous every time it has happened.

Today's financial crisis 'has made abundantly clear that our financial system would benefit from a regulator whose focus is on risks across the financial system,' Paulson said.

There is support for giving the Fed this duty, he added. 'It would require the Fed to have access to information from a broader set of financial organizations, including hedge funds and systemically important payment systems.'

He said such a regulator would need 'the power to intervene if it concluded that the financial system was at risk.'

He called on Congress to find ways to unwind failing non-bank institutions to avoid a repeat of the 2008 collapses of investment banks Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers.

Sounds like a real winner, doesn't it? Under the smoke and mirrors going on in Congress, the mogul horde thinks to use the old Trojan horse gimmick. A great offering of solving those regulatory problems in the guise of an 'independent' agency that would do it all, now there's the answer we are looking for. Of course, grounds are being laid by the Liddy sort to foist off the only ones who can understand the operations of the money market, financial 'experts', on us in the guise of regulators. If the thinking community hasn't learned in the eight years of government by the worst of the worst we just passed through, that putting wolves in charge of the sheep is not good for the flock, we've learned nothing.

The independence of the agencies during the maladministration just past was an independence from Rule of Law and standards of decency. The results have been massive theft, in addition to wars and hideous crimes against humanity in the executive branch - crimes that have produced a massive disaster in every field for this country.

Checks and balances are crucial to our functioning government. An attempt to consolidate powers under regulators to be chosen by the mogul horde is an attempt to return to the criminal conduct of the eight years just past.

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Blogger Woody (Tokin Librul/Rogue Scholar/ Helluvafella!) said...

He said such a regulator would need 'the power to intervene if it concluded that the financial system was at risk.'

That just seems to me to be an open invitation to invite the fascists to move back in.

Such a person--the "regulator"--would be the sinecure of all the greedy, power-grabbing, rapacious eyes. It would be in position to IMMENSELY enrich itself, and increase it's power.

And it would be, in effect, unaccountable.

Unless it were 'elected.'

But then we'd already have one of those: a "president."

if that person were actually doing her/his job...

9:38 AM  
Blogger Ruth said...

So true. I suspect Paulson has his nominee now doing a dogpaddle on Wall Street waiting for his coming throne.

9:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boiling down to the value of labor vs the value of earning off of earnings alone.
Financial products/Service economy...FOR FUCKS SAKE.

Too bad that we have sat back and ignored our best instincts. The ones who have been talking about it are labeled whacky leftheads. I may not be able to talk the jargon but I have a gut that has been talking turkey since the GOP put Reagan up. The rationale hasn't changed.

Sick as hell that their tipping point is reached and American sweat and toil is expected to pick up their tab.

5:48 AM  
Blogger Ruth said...

The public isn't taking this lying down, it seems. Good thing. See today's post (3/22).

9:30 AM  

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