by Joel Kotkin 08/10/2012
About two in three Americans do not think what’s good for Wall Street is good for America, according to the 2012 Harris poll, but do think people who work there are less “honest and moral than other people,” and don’t “deserve to make the kind of money they earn.” Confidence in banks is at a record low, according to Gallup, as they’ve suffered the steepest fall in esteem of any American institution over the past decade. And people have put their money where their mouth is, with $171 billion leaving the stock market last year alone, and 80 percent of Wall Street communications executives conceded that public perception of their firms was not good.
Americans are angry at the big-time bankers and brokers, and yet, far from a populist attack on crony capitalism, Wall Street is sitting pretty, looking ahead to a presidential election that it can’t possibly lose. They have bankrolled a nifty choice between President Obama, the largest beneficiary of financial-industry backing in history and Mitt Romney, one of their very own.
One is to the manner born, the other a crafty servant; neither will take on the power.
Think of this: despite taking office in the midst of a massive financial meltdown, Obama’s administration has not prosecuted a single heavy-hitter among those responsible for the financial crisis. To the contrary, he’s staffed his team with big bankers and their allies. Under the Bush-Obama bailouts the big financial institutions have feasted like pigs at the trough, with the six largest banks borrowing almost a half trillion dollars from uncle Ben Bernanke’s printing press. In 2013 the top four banks controlled more than 40 percent of the credit markets in the top 10 states—up by 10 percentage points from 2009 and roughly twice their share in 2000. Meantime, small banks, usually the ones serving Main Street businesses, have taken the hit along with the rest of us with more than 300 folding since the passage of Dodd-Frank, the industry-approved bill to “reform” the industry.
Yet past the occasional election-year bout of symbolic class warfare, the oligarchs have little to fear from an Obama victory.
- Obama’s Goldman-Sachs surrender (salon.com)
- The Screwed Election – Wall St. Wins (thedailybeast.com)
- Richard Brodsky: A Jury Takes on Wall Street: Occupy Finds an Ally (huffingtonpost.com)
- Obama Leading Outside the Margin of Error (elections.firedoglake.com)
- 20 Infamous Quotes That Wall Street Wishes Were Never Made Public (businessinsider.com)
- Financial Fraud Convictions: Bush 1300+, Clinton 1000+, Obama 0 (dprogram.net)
- Wall Street Analyst Wonders If The Election Is Basically Already Over (businessinsider.com)
- Walled up wall street by regis boileau (500px.com)
- Obama told authorities not to crack down on lawless #OWS ‘Occupy’ protesters, documents show (atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com)
- Why Does Wall Street Dislike Obama so Much? Non-Financial and Financial Equity Values Since 2007 Edition (delong.typepad.com)