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Posts Tagged ‘Banksters

Bugger the Bankers! official video

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Written by laudyms

March 25, 2014 at 9:37 am

You think you have free speech? just try to use it…..

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Bank of America
by jonathanturley      6/26/13

banksters

Jeff Olson, 40, is facing a potential 13-year jail sentence for perhaps the world’s most costly sidewalk art. A former aide to the U.S. Senator from Washington, Olson used water-soluble statements like “Stop big banks,” and “Stop Bank Blight.com” outside Bank of America branches last year to protest the company’s practices. He eventually gave up his protest but prosecutors later brought 13 charges against him. Now a judge has reportedly banned his attorney from “mentioning the First Amendment, free speech, free expression, public forum, expressive conduct, or political speech during the trial.” It appears someone associated with Bank of American could finally go to jail, but it will not by the bank officials in the financial scandal. It is the guy writing slogans in chalk in the sidewalk.

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Free Trade and Unrestricted Capital Flow: How Billionaires Get Rich and Destroy the Rest of Us

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neoliberalism_chart

Excellent article at Naked Capitalism: Free Trade and Unrestricted Capital Flow: How Billionaires Get Rich and Destroy the Rest of Us
tho I wonder if some who could benefit from reading this would quit too early because of finance-specific language? Take heart! read at least as far as this part:

There’s a straight line between “free-trade” — a prime tenet of both right-wing Milton Friedman thinking and left-wing Bill Clinton–Robert Rubin neoliberalism — and wealth inequality in America. In fact, if the billionaires didn’t have the one (a global free-trade regime) they couldn’t have the other (your money in their pocket). And the whole global “all your money are belong to us” process has only three moving parts. Read on to see them. Once you “get it,” you’ll get it for a long time…

And this part:

In its simplest terms, “free trade” means one thing only — the ability of people with capital to move that capital freely, anywhere in the  world, seeking the highest profit. It’s been said of Bush II, for example, that “when Bush talks of ‘freedom’, he doesn’t mean human freedom, he means freedom  to move money.” (Sorry, can’t find a link.)

At its heart, free trade doesn’t mean the ability to trade freely per  se; that’s just a byproduct. It means the ability to invest freely  without governmental constraint. Free trade is why factories in China have  American investors and partners — because you can’t bring down manufacturing  wages in Michigan and Alabama if you can’t set up slave factories somewhere else and get your government to make that capital move cost-free, or even  tax-incentivized, out of your supposed home country and into a place ripe for  predation.

Welcome to the Brave New World of pump and dump.

related: Cyprus Has the Global Money Elite’s Fingerprints All Over It

and another: When Capitalism only works for the wealthy

Tell the Senate to Reject the Korea-U.S. Trade Agreement!

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The banks that just wrecked the economy and got Washington to bail them out are lining up for more handouts.

This time, they’re pushing a NAFTA-style trade pact with Korea that prohibits countries from banning risky financial products and services, among other regulatory limits that put banks’ profits before economic stability and jobs. But we won’t let it happen.

Tell Congress to support good jobs over Wall Street greed and reject the Korea trade deal!

You can tell a lot about a trade deal by who is hyping it. Bailed out banks like Citigroup love the Korea trade pact. They say it has “the best financial services chapter negotiated in a free trade agreement to date.” But who wants to support financial policies celebrated by megabanks that helped wreck the economy?

Tell Congress to stand up to Wall Street and reject the Korea trade deal!

This NAFTA clone helps big banks’ short term interests, at the expense of the rest of us. Consider this example: in 1997, the Korean economy collapsed when financial speculators treated the country like a casino and pushed crazy amounts of money in and out of the country. Some of this bad behavior resurfaced in the most recent financial crisis too.

Korea responded in 1997 and again a decade later by utilizing what are known as capital controls — basically speed bumps that slow down the capital floods and flights. But the NAFTA-style deal with Korea would prohibit restrictions of big corporations’ ability to make these hasty speculative transfers — even when economic crisis or hardship could be avoided by doing so. Oh yeah, and the big banks could even demand that taxpayers pay them off millions of bucks in compensation if our governments even try to use these important economic stability policy tools.

Have we learned nothing from the global financial crisis?

Tell your representative to reject the casino economy and vote “No” on the Korea trade deal.

Both the U.S. and Korea have tried to reign in the job-killing behavior of Wall Street over the last few years, and more remains to be done. The last thing we need is a NAFTA-style deal with Korea that will limit our ability to regulate the financial casino that is harming Main Street.

If the rest of us are tightening our belts, corporations shouldn’t treat our democracy as their all-you-can-eat meal ticket.

Tell Congress to reject the Korean trade deal!

Info from Public Citizen

Government sues bankers over offenses government regulators ignored

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Left Hand, Meet Right Hand

The government sues bankers over offenses government regulators once ignored.

By Bethany McLean Tuesday, March 29, 2011, Slate

Kerry Killinger. Click image to expand.

A couple of weeks ago, the government started signaling, at long last, that it was ready to get tough on the bankers who caused the 2008 financial crisis. On March 16 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, or FDIC, sued three former top executives of Washington Mutual, or WaMu, for taking “extreme and historically unprecedented risks,” thereby causing the bank to lose “billions of dollars.” That same day, the New York Times reported that the Securities and Exchange Commission had sent so-called Wells notices—often a sign that civil charges are imminent—to a handful of former executives at mortgage-securitization giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

The targets seem well-chosen. The collapse of WaMu, acquired by JPMorgan Chase at a fire-sale price in the fall of 2008 was, according to the FDIC, the biggest bank failure in U.S. history. The FDIC is seeking to recover $900 million from the three bankers. Fannie and Freddie were taken over by the government in the fall of 2008. So far, they have cost taxpayers about $130 billion.

Perhaps you’re thinking: If only the government had known at the time what these scoundrels were up to, we could all have been spared a great deal of pain. The trouble with that line of reasoning is that, um, the government did know what was going on. The Office of Thrift Supervision, which regulated WaMu, and the Office of Housing Enterprise Oversight, which regulated Fannie and Freddie, were supervising the very behavior that their sister agencies are now suing over. The government’s lawsuits call to mind a cynical boast by Burt Lancaster, playing tabloid power broker J.J. Hunsecker, in the 1957 noir classic Sweet Smell of Success: “My right hand hasn’t seen my left hand in 30 years.”

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BANKSTER ACTION ALERT: NATIONAL CALL IN DAY ON FRAUDCLOSURE, TUESDAY MARCH 29TH

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BANKSTER USA  

March 29, 2011
CONTACT: Mary Bottari at (608)-260-9713 or mary@prwatch.org

BANKSTER ACTION ALERT: NATIONAL CALL IN DAY ON FRAUDCLOSURE, TUESDAY MARCH 29TH

The first draft of a proposed settlement from the 50 state Attorneys General against the big banks for their rampant mortgage fraud went public a few weeks ago.

Starting with a middle-of-the-road proposal full of loopholes is not a good way to start negotiation. The big banks and their supporters have already started crying foul, trying to slip out of any real enforcement, punishment and restitution for the millions of homeowners they owe. This means that it’s time to kick into high gear our push for a “settlement that fits the crime.”

The state Attorneys General are expected to meet with the big banks this week. That’s why our friends at National People’s Action, PICO National Network and others working to stop the foreclosure madness are making today Nationwide Call-In Day to all 50 state Attorneys General.

TAKE ACTION! Call your state Attorney General today at 1-866-200-6444 and tell him/her that crime should not pay! Tell your AG to come out in support a settlement that provides justice for the homeowners who have been wrongfully foreclosed upon and for millions facing foreclosure, and a settlement that holds the big banks accountable for their crimes. Nothing less is acceptable.

BANKSTER WONK ROOM: Read more about problems with the settlement negotiations so far:

Gretchen Morgensen, New York Times “A Swift Deal May Not Be a Sound One”.

Jesse Eisinger, New York Times “In Proposed Mortgage Fraud Settlement, a Gift to Big Banks.”

And thank you for everything you do to fight the Banskters!

Follow BanksterUSA on FaceBook and Twitter!

ABOUT US

BanksterUSA is a project of the Wisconsin-based Center for Media and Democracy (CMD). CMD was founded in 1993 as an independent, non-profit, non-partisan, public interest group focusing on exposing corporate spin and government propaganda.

520 University Avenue, Suite 260
Madison, Wisconsin 53703-4929
Phone: 608-260-9713 | Fax: 608-260-9714
E-mail: info@banksterusa.org 

 

Some recent stories on increasing legal and economic pressures being put on struggling homeowners.

Security Implications and the Decline of U.S. Manufacturing

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Globalization, multi-national corporations, off-shore tax havens and governments willing to support them have created a global criminal enterprise designed to pillage nations and peoples for the profit of a very few.  De-industrialization of the United States was orchestrated for this purpose by the “enemies foreign and domestic” that we were warned about. Their plot has now become our national policy, and Congressional concerns will not be made public. - Claudia

Intelligence and the Decline of U.S. Manufacturing

March 28th, 2011           by Steven Aftergood FAS Secrecy News

The U.S. intelligence community will prepare a National Intelligence Estimate on the implications of the continuing decline in U.S. manufacturing capacity, said Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) citing recent news reports.

“Last month Forbes reported that the continued erosion of the U.S. manufacturing base has gotten so serious that the Director of National Intelligence has begun preparation of a National Intelligence Estimate… to assess the security implications of the decline of American manufacturing,” said Rep. Schakowsky, a member of the House Intelligence Committee.

“Our growing reliance on imports and lack of industrial infrastructure has become a national security concern,” said Rep. Schakowsky.  She spoke at a March 16 news conference (at 28:10) in opposition to the pending U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement.

The Forbes report referenced by Rep. Schakowsky was “Intelligence Community Fears U.S. Manufacturing Decline,” by Loren Thompson, February 14. The decision to prepare an intelligence estimate was first reported by Richard McCormack in “Intelligence Director Will Look at National Security Implications of U.S. Manufacturing Decline,” Manufacturing & Technology News, February 3.

Rep. Schakowsky told the newsletter Inside U.S. Trade (March 25) that she hopes a “declassified portion” of the NIE will be publicly released.

But according to the Congressional Research Service, that may be unlikely. “There seems to be an emerging consensus that publicly releasing NIEs, or even unclassified summaries, has limitations. Some of the nuances of classified intelligence judgments are lost and there are concerns that public release of an unclassified summary of a complicated situation does not effectively serve the legislative process.” See “Intelligence Estimates: How Useful to Congress?” (pdf), January 6, 2011.

“With 14 million Americans out of a job we should not be considering a trade deal that will ship additional jobs overseas,” said Rep. Schakowsky, referring to the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement.

“Instead, we need to work to rebuild the American manufacturing sector, creating jobs at home. And instead of approving FTAs (free trade agreements) that will offshore more American jobs, we need to establish a trade policy that benefits American workers and the entire American economy,” she said.

The CRS (pdf) cited a study which concluded that overall changes in aggregate U.S. employment attributable to the US-Korea agreement “would be negligible given the much larger size of the U.S. economy compared to the South Korean economy. However, while some sectors, such as livestock producers, would experience increases in employment, others such as textile, wearing apparel, and electronic equipment manufacturers would be expected to experience declines in employment.” Accordingly, the “U.S. beef sector” supports the agreement, while some labor unions oppose it.

See “The Proposed U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA): Provisions and Implications,” Congressional Research Service, March 1, 2011.  See also “Free Trade Agreements: Impact on U.S. Trade and Implications for U.S. Trade Policy,” January 6, 2011.

***

For an in-depth look at how Globalization really works see:

Treasure Islands: Tax Havens and the Men Who Stole the World by Nicholas Shaxson

Amazon link and

What “Free Trade” Has Cost The World- globalization makes peons of us all

INSIDE JOB- criminals are still running American finance

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“Inside Job” won the 2011 Academy Award for best documentary on Sunday night. The film’s director used his acceptance speech to deliver pointed criticism of Wall Street and the financial industry.

“Inside Job” director Charles Ferguson subjected Wall Street players, economists and bureaucrats to a fierce cross-examination to depict the economic crisis as a colossal crime perpetrated on the working-class masses by a greedy few. His film examined the financial crisis of 2008. His speech lamented the lack of accountability three years later. “Forgive me, I must start by pointing out that three years after our horrific financial crisis caused by financial fraud, not a single financial executive has gone to jail, and that’s wrong,” Ferguson said.

Charles Ferguson’s Oscar Speech Rips Wall Street: ‘Inside Job’ Director Levels Criticism During Acceptance

Where Are The Wall Street Indictments?

Charles Ferguson: The Financial Crisis and America’s Political Duopoly

The United States is now in the grip of a political duopoly in which both parties are thoroughly complicit. The current arrangement all but guarantees the continuing decline of the United States as a nation.

 

“Why aren’t more meltdown moguls indicted?” asks USA Today edit board: “If anyone acted and looked the part of a villain, it was the co-founder of Countrywide … The former managing director of credit rating agency Moody’s Corp. found a novel way to quadruple his company’s market share in rating mortgage-backed securities — he transferred, or fired, most of the analysts in the group … The former head of AIG’s financial products used the sterling credit of his parent company to quickly become the world’s largest insurer of the complex mortgage products Wall Street was churning out”

“You Have More Money In Your Wallet Than Bank Of America Pays In Federal Taxes” reports ThinkProgress: “…as politicians are asking ordinary Americans to sacrifice their education, their health, their labor rights, and their wellbeing to tackle budget deficits, some of the world’s richest multinational corporations are getting away with shirking their responsibility and paying nothing.”

LAT has the latest on the cost of the bailouts: “In mid-2009, [TARP] was projected to lose as much as $341 billion. That’s been reduced to $25 billion … Still, many people are worried about the long-term effects of the government actions [by setting] a dangerous precedent, opening the door to future crises … critics also said that hundreds of billions of dollars in bailout money … will not come back, mainly because of … Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which combined have consumed $150 billion … most recent estimates of losses for all the various bailout efforts range from $238 billion to $380 billion. But Treasury officials think those estimates might be too high. They said the total cost of all the financial interventions is likely to be less than $140 billion … less expensive than the federal losses from the savings and loan crisis in the late 1980s and early 1990s…”

Accounting Fraud- evidently now legal, bankers above the law

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“Where are the Handcuffs?” Why Aren’t Bankers in Jail?

MSNBC—Feb. 17, 2011—Dylan Ratigan discusses recent subpoenas and what else needs to happen to hold Wall Street accountable.

Cenk Uygur speaks with Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi on why crooks on Wall Street go unpunished (often while taking home enormous sums of money).

and here’s Matt’s Rolling Stone article: 

Why Isn’t Wall Street in Jail?

By Matt Taibbi      RollingStone Feb 16, 2011

Financial crooks brought down the world’s economy — but the feds are doing more to protect them than to prosecute them

Over drinks at a bar on a dreary, snowy night in Washington this past month, a former Senate investigator laughed as he polished off his beer.

“Everything’s fucked up, and nobody goes to jail,” he said. “That’s your whole story right there. Hell, you don’t even have to write the rest of it. Just write that.”

I put down my notebook. “Just that?”

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US Hypocrisy Scuttles its Own Sinking Ship

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The worm turns….or twists in the wind, according to your view. It really was international Banksters that lit the fuse under Mubarak with their wholesale looting, so it’s almost fun to watch them scurry around trying to find someone to bail them out of this mess.  Too bad power and wisdom don’t go together. And in the end the people pay with misery for the blunders of their bosses.

US envoy’s business link to Egypt : Robert Fisk

“Obama scrambles to limit damage after Frank Wisner makes robust call for Mubarak to remain in place as leader…..Frank Wisner, President Barack Obama’s envoy to Cairo who infuriated the White House this weekend by urging Hosni Mubarak to remain President of Egypt, works for a New York and Washington law firm which works for the dictator’s own Egyptian government. Mr Wisner’s astonishing remarks – “President Mubarak’s continued leadership is critical: it’s his opportunity to write his own legacy” – shocked the democratic opposition in Egypt and called into question Mr Obama’s judgement, as well as that of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The US State Department and Mr Wisner himself have now both claimed that his remarks were made in a “personal capacity”. But there is nothing “personal” about Mr Wisner’s connections with the litigation firm Patton Boggs, which openly boasts that it advises “the Egyptian military, the Egyptian Economic Development Agency, and has handled arbitrations and litigation on the [Mubarak] government’s behalf in Europe and the US”.”

US Warships Signal Washington’s Intervention to Save its Egyptian Garrison by Finian Cunningham

Three US warships dispatched to Egypt signal that Washington is stepping up efforts to secure the embattled regime of Hosni Mubarak.

The IMF’s Epic Fail on Egypt (naked capitalism)

Over the last week, we’ve had the spectacle of the Western media speculating about what is going on in Egypt in the absence of much understanding of the forces at work (this article by Paul Amar is a notable exception).

Needless to say, there has also been a great deal of consternation as to how the West’s supposedly vaunted intelligence apparatus failed to see this one coming. This lapse is as bad as the inability to foresee the collapse of the Soviet Union (it’s arguably worse: a lot of people profited from the Cold War, and they’d have every reason to fan fears and thus look for evidence that would support the idea that the USSR was a formidable threat. By contrast, one would think that conveying word that the domestic situation in Egypt was charged would have led to more intense scrutiny which ought to have served some interests (like various consultants and analysts). That suggests the US was so wedded to Mubarak that anyone who dared say his regime was at risk would get “shoot the messenger” treatment, and thus nary a discouraging word was conveyed).

Tomgram: Engelhardt, Goodbye to All That

Pox Americana
Driving Through the Gates of Hell and Other American Pastimes in the Greater Middle East

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