Wednesday, April 21, 2010

g.h.kirsch: Welcome, Mr. President

As President Obama packed his bags tonight for a little visit to his good friends in New York, his old pals on Wall Street are rolling out quite a welcome.

They have a little message for Obama, the opening lines will be delivered by their new front group, Stop Too Big To Fail that just made an enormous media buy meant to signal the start of a campaign that will morph into political war on senators and congressmen who would trifle with the financial sector's power.

Appraising us to be the same suckers they sell beer, hamburgers, Viagra and soft drinks, here come the oligarchs with a twisted message intended to convince us that being impoverished for their benefit will all work out in the end for the best. (which of course would be them!)

Simon Johnson correctly observed the Democrats fear that if they truly take on the big banks, they will lose campaign contributions and be placed at a major disadvantage in 2010 and 2012.  The message from the White House to the Senate is “don’t push it too far.”

The Republicans, on the other hand, are standing around quite unembarrassed, like hookers used to prostituting themselves.

Johnson, perhaps the clearest, most consistent and most passionately concerned economist engaged, feels this just shows Obama has not fully comprehended the modern nature of banking. 

Not surprising given the people who surround the President.  I might go a bit further, and propose that our President does not see himself or banking in historical context. 

Greater men than Obama have struggled with this beast.  Since the days of Jefferson and Jackson, to the times of Lincoln, the nation's leaders have wrestled to secure a steady economy for Americans from the banking cartel.  But every few generations, the beast is back.  And the beast is at our very doors today.

I'm afraid Obama is not up to it.  His fear of political defeat will, most likely, assure it.  If we fail to reform the runaway corruption at the center of our financial system, yes right there on Wall Street, these racketeers will destroy the nation and leave us in a depression to match the worst human tragedies in our history.

Obama's only path forward, though few will agree with me now, is to throw his lot with the average American.  He has the eloquence to explain to his people the danger these parasites are to the body politic. 

The President can always command enough media not to be drowned out by high paid propagandists.  But can he bring it?

Today is the day, this is the place, now is the time.