Those wishing to express outrage can do so at Showdown In Chicago on October 25-27.
Showdown is a series of demonstrations when thousands of Americans – retirees, farmers, workers, homeowners, renters, students, clergy, and small business owners – come together on the streets of Chicago to demand a banking system that puts the American people first and a Congress that makes it happen!
Dean Baker, Co-Director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, says Won’t You Please Come to Chicago?
Those disgusted by the bank bailouts, and the bankers who brought us this recession, will have a chance to make their views known when the American Bankers Association has its annual meeting in Chicago, October 25-27. A large coalition of labor, community, and consumer organizations are organizing a protest at this “Showdown in Chicago”
A big turnout at this event can make a real difference. Just to review the scorecard, most of the country is still suffering the fallout from the bankers’ irrational exuberance of the housing bubble era. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and other forecasters expect the suffering to endure for years to come.
The unemployment rate is about to cross 10 percent, with an additional 9 million workers only able to find part-time work. CBO projects that unemployment will not return to normal levels until 2014. Almost 200,000 people are losing their homes every month through foreclosure. Tens of millions of people who had expected a comfortable retirement just saw most of their wealth disappear with the collapse of the housing bubble. State and local governments are being forced to lay off school teachers and fire fighters under the pressure of enormous budget deficits.
But not everyone is suffering. Thanks to the bailout programs put in place last fall, most of the country’s major banks are back on their feet. In fact, in the most recent quarter, bank profits hit a new record high as a share of all corporate profits.
And the banks are sharing their wealth. Many of their top executives and high performers will be getting bonuses this year worth millions of dollars, in some cases the bonuses will be in the tens of millions.
In the meantime, in elite Washington circles people are busy making plans for a national sales tax so that the government can limit the fiscal damage caused by the bankers’ recession
To summarize: the bankers wrecked the economy with their greed, ran off with taxpayer dollars in a massive bailout, and now plan to raise taxes for the rest of us. If that picture doesn’t sound quite right, then go to Chicago.
This is a case where the divisions are not left-right, but of the elite against everyone else.
A bill that would require the Fed to disclose what it did with more than $2 trillion in loans to banks and other financial institutions was originally co-sponsored by Ron Paul and Alan Grayson, one of the most conservative and one of the most progressive members of Congress. Due to public pressure, it now has more than 270 co-sponsors.
This is exactly the sort of alliance that gets the elite worried. Reining in the power of the financial industry will be a long hard fought war, but it is one that must be fought. President and Nobel peace prize winner Barack Obama may not have been able to bring the Olympics to Chicago, but everyone who wants to retake our country from the banks can bring their backside there on October 25th.
On the off-chance you are not outraged at anything please read Where The Hell Is The Outrage? for some ideas.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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