“Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we.” - George W. Bush

Monday, October 26, 2009

Kill the big banks once and for all?

What good are mega-banks? Who are they good for and could they even exist without overt or virtual government guarantees? Most of them have been used for chop-shops of American industry and issuing financial instruments of mass destruction that no one seems to understand and if they do, they do not seem to be able to explain them to anyone that does not comprehend the financial divining behind them.

If capitalists want to gamble with equity, that is their business , but federally chartered banks, using credit backed by government guarantees have no reason to exist. Gradually withdraw the guarantees and let the bankasaurs sink into the extinction pit.


Wall Street firms should not be called banks, US official says
Head of government insurer says legal constraints on using the word 'bank' needed to dispel confusion

Andrew Clark Guardian

One of America's top financial regulators has suggested that Wall Street institutions should be banned from calling themselves "banks" in an effort to clear a fog of confusion about the word in both political and consumer circles.

Sheila Bair, chair of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), suggested that only commercial deposit-taking institutions, where customers' cash is safeguarded by a guarantee, should be permitted to describe themselves as banks.

"Everything gets called a bank these days," Bair told the annual conference of the American Bankers Association. "Wall Street firms, mortgage firms ... Maybe there should be some legal constraints on who should call themselves banks – maybe only FDIC insured institutions should have that label."

Such a definition would exclude the likes of Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, which do not take consumer deposits but often describe themselves as investment banks. It would also leave out thousands of "mortgage banks" that typically act as go-betweens linking consumer and secondary financial markets.

An annual gathering of banking chief executives, held in Chicago this year, has been greeted with protests organised by unions furious at irresponsible lending, home foreclosures and bailouts.

Several hundred demonstrators wielding placards with slogans such as "stop robber barons" and "hold banks accountable" rallied outside the Sheraton hotel, where the financial bosses were gathering. Amid tight security, activists tried to get into an opening drinks reception on Sunday evening but were kept back by police. Protests were also staged at the Chicago office of Goldman Sachs. The American Bankers Association includes JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America and Citigroup. But it argues that the majority of its members are community banks which should not be blamed for the ills of Wall Street.

"The financial crisis is unfortunately often referred to as a banking crisis," said Edward Yingling, chief executive of the association, adding high-profile failures such as AIG, Lehman Brothers, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were not banks.

More than 100 smaller banks have been seized by regulators in the US this year, with the FDIC stepping in to safeguard customers' deposits. Many industry regulators argue that large institutions, too, should be allowed to fail rather than being bailed out by the government.

Bair said the concept of banks becoming "too big to fail" had become a moral hazard following aid to keep firms such as Citigroup and Bank of America afloat, and that the government ought to develop a way of winding down unviable firms in a sensible manner. He added that there was a growing political consensus between Republicans and Democrats on this.


  1. If we had any kind of legal system half of those sonofabitches (I'm including a whole swath of politicians) would be in jail right now.

  2. Kill 'em, small banks are best.

    Small is best in many things.

  3. Not quite the all seeing eye, but close---

    Shrimp From Mars

  4. Eric Hoffer wrote in 1968 that what happens to Israel eventually happens to all of us.

    Hear, O Israel

    Here's the way Joseph Campbell interprets, for himself at least, the double triangle--

    When we are one place in our lives and want to be in another place, there's an obstacle to be overcome, a threshold to be passed. The six-pointed star, which in Judaism is the Star of David, is a symbol that appears in India as the sign of Chakra IV.

    (Symbol of Star of David here)

    In the double triangle, the up-ward-pointed triangle--you might use the word "aspiration" for that--is symbolic of the movement principle. The downward-pointed triangle is inertia, and it represents what the obstacle would be. The down-ward-pointing triangle can be experienced either as an impediment or as the door that is opened. When you recognize its psychological significance and effect a mental transformation, then you see the obstacle as an opening.

    So you can experience the down-ward-pointed triangle in two ways: one, as an obstacle; and the other as the means by which you are going to make the ascent. So, everything in your life that seems to be obstructive can be transformed by your recognizing that it is the means for your transition.

  5. FP: Why the hatred of the Jew?

    Solway: As I write in the book, hatred of the Jew is the perpetual vestige of Western resentment and vexation against its own civilizing imperative. This too was Winston Churchill’s understanding of Jew-hatred, which he described as Western civilization’s revolt against its own central values as manifested in art, science and political and religious institutions. It is no exaggeration to say that the Jew is the test case of a civilization—a test we appear to have failed.

    from the article

  6. Got Perfect Credit? You Could Be Charged For It!

    Bank Of America, Citigroup First To Try Out Idea, Which Will Undoubtedly Alienate Many Who Follow The Rules.

    Loraine Mullen-Kress carries a Bank of America credit card and religiously pays off her balance.

    "Flawless credit," she boasted.

    Yet now, her good credit habits could cost her. Earlier this month Bank of America started notifying customers like Mullen-Kress that they will be charged a new annual fee of $29 to $99.

    "There is a big segment of their population that they will have never made money on, which is people who pay their bills on time every month," said Ben Woolsey, Director of Consumer Research at CreditCards.com.

    Bank of America said in a statement: "At this point we're testing the fee on a very small number of accounts and haven't made any final decisions." Citigroup is also trying out an annual fee with some card holders, and analysts expect more banks to follow their lead.

  7. Hoffman Leading?

    The blogosphere is abuzz over a new poll showing Conservative candidate Doug Hoffman leading Democrat Bill Owens and Republican Dede Scozzafava in the race to replace Congressman John McHugh (R), who resigned to become Obama's Secretary of the Army. The Club for Growth-sponsored poll by Basswood Research shows Hoffman with 31%, Owens with 27%, and Scozzafava at 20%.
    On the other hand, there's been a dearth of polling in the district, accompanied by a surge of activity. The last polling was conducted by Research 2000 (October 19-20) for the liberal website DailyKos. It showed Hoffman at 23%, Owens at 35%, and Scozzafava at 30%. Polling conducted a week earlier by New York based Siena showed a similar Owens lead.
    Since those polls were conducted, Scozzafava has endured a spate of bad publicity. In particular, her use of the police to stop an aggressive reporter has received widespread attention in the district.

  8. Silencing Voices for School Choice

    Attorney General Eric Holder tries to kill a TV ad supporting D.C. school vouchers.

  9. "Do as I say,
    not as MY Children do.

  10. The bank charges the store up to 5% every time a card is used. They make money on Every transaction.

  11. Be careful. The Club for Growth polls consistently have Hoffman in way better shape than any of the other polls. I, also, would like to see Hoffman win, but the CFG is just as crooked as any of the other assholes up there.

  12. Yeah, but the other poll was done for the DailyKos!
    ...naturally, 'Rat touted that!

  13. Yeah, I just don't want to see you get your itty-bitty heart broke. Odds are pretty big against him.

    But, Dammit, I'd love to see it, too.

  14. I see why saving big banks are important, however, I'm not sure its the government's role to step in so much as the plan proposes.