Preface: Washington’s Blog is non-partisan, and doesn’t judge people on whether they’re labeled “liberal” or “conservative”. Instead, we judge based on whether people will support policies which help or hurt the American people. Additionally, we’ll continue slamming Trump when we think he’s leaning towards appointing bad guys.
I’d never heard of Steve Bannon until Trump named him as chief strategist and senior counselor.
I soon learned that Bannon is executive chairman of Breitbart, which the media labels an “alt right” news source (I’ve only read a few articles on Breitbart, when linked from other websites).
I’ve also heard a lot of accusations that Bannon is a racist, sexist and homophobe. If true, that’s despicable.
Indeed, Democrats are so upset by Trump’s naming of Bannon that the Senate Minority Leader (Harry Reid) has demanded that Trump rescind Bannon’s appointment.
But there’s one reason that liberals should applaud Bannon’s appointment. The Fiscal Times explains:
On Tuesday, BuzzFeed News released a transcript of remarks Bannon delivered to the Christian conservative Human Dignity Institute in 2014. In a lengthy discourse on the causes and aftereffects of the 2008 financial crisis Bannon, himself a former managing partner at Goldman Sachs, blamed the financial crisis and subsequent recession on the “greed” of his fellow bankers and expressed anger at the fact that no bank executives faced criminal prosecution.
“Think about it — not one criminal charge has ever been brought to any bank executive associated with 2008 crisis,” Bannon said. “And in fact, it gets worse. No bonuses and none of their equity was taken. So part of the prime drivers of the wealth that they took in the 15 years leading up to the crisis was not hit at all, and I think that’s one of the fuels of this populist revolt that we’re seeing as the tea party.”
He continued, “[T]he underpinning of this populist revolt is the financial crisis of 2008. That revolt, the way that it was dealt with, the way that the people who ran the banks and ran the hedge funds have never really been held accountable for what they did, has fueled much of the anger in the tea party movement in the United States.”
Some of Bannon’s remarks sound as though they could have come not from the close aide to an incoming Republican president, but rather from liberals like Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders or populist Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Among other things, he discussed what he sees as the need to limit the activities that financial institutions are allowed to engage in, such as forcing commercial banks to focus on lending, and blocking investment banks from trading in securities.
Bannon criticized steps taken at the outset of the financial crisis to prevent widespread failures in the financial services industry, arguing that the burden of paying for the bailout was on taxpayers while the benefits flowed to “crony capitalists.”
Here’s how capitalism metastasized, is that all the burdens put on the working-class people who get none of the upside. All of the upside goes to the crony capitalists.
“The bailouts were absolutely outrageous, and here’s why: It bailed out a group of shareholders and executives who were specifically accountable. The shareholders were accountable for one simple reason: They allowed this to go wrong without changing management … And we know this now from congressional investigations, we know it from independent investigations, this is not some secret conspiracy. This is kind of in plain sight.”
Bannon described an alliance of law firms, accounting firms and other influential players in Washington who collectively pressured politicians and prosecutors to look the other way as, in his telling, the same people who caused the crisis in the first place benefited lavishly from the efforts to repair the damage they had done.
But it was his promise — made nearly a year before Trump declared his candidacy and almost two years before Bannon became CEO of his campaign — that will likely cause the most concern in Wall Street boardrooms.
“And they’ve never been held accountable today,” Bannon said. “Trust me — they are going to be held accountable.”
Bannon’s statements mirror what top liberal economists (and top economists from across the political spectrum) have repeatedly said.
- Another Nobel Economist Says We Have to Prosecute Fraud Or Else the Economy Won’t Recover
- Top Bank Fraud Expert: ALL of the Big Banks’ Profits Come from FRAUD
- Settling Prosecutions For Pennies on the Dollar Is a Type of Bailout
- Real Free Market Capitalists Demand that Financial Fraud Be Prosecuted
- The Government Has It Bass-Ackwards: Failing To Prosecute Criminal Fraud by the Big Banks Is Killing – NOT Saving – the Economy
- 30,000 Criminal Referrals Led to 1,000+ Felony Convictions In Major Fraud Cases During the S&L Crisis … Not Even a SINGLE Prosecution Today, Even Though the 2008 Crisis Was 70 Times Bigger
- 6 Years After the Financial Crisis Hit, The Big Banks Are Still Committing Massive Crimes
- Is Greed “Good” … The “Root of All Evil” … Or Something Else?
Disgorging Ill-Gotten Gains
- Top Fraud Prosecutor: The Criminals Can Be Forced to Disgorge their Ill-Gotten Gains INCLUDING Bonuses
- The Occupy Movement Is Protesting the SAME THING that the Founding Fathers Protested at the Boston Tea Party
Banks Should Be Limited to Banking
- Wall Street Angry that Trump Says Restore Glass-Steagall
- “Too Big To Fails” Have Stopped Being Banks
- Volcker: Financial Innovation is Worthless, and Banks Should Be Limited to Traditional Depository Functions
- Former Chairman of Citigroup: Restore Glass-Steagall
- The Federal Reserve Is Bailing Out FOREIGN Banks … More than the American People or Economy
- The Government Lied When It Said It Only Bailed Out Healthy Banks … 12 of the 13 Big Banks Were Going Bust
- BIS Warns that Bailouts Could Damage Financial System
- IMF Warns of Revolution if Another Round of Bailouts Is Handed Out
- Top Economists: Iceland Did It Right … And Everyone Else Is Doing It Wrong
- Fed President: Too Big Banks Are Just Crony Capitalists
- Protesters Worldwide Demand An End to Crony Capitalism
- Capitalism, Socialism or Fascism?
- What’s the Difference Between Fascism, Communism and Crony-Capitalism? Nothing
Benefiting from Wrongdoing
- It’s Not the “Great Recession”. It’s the Great BANK ROBBERY
- Psychopaths Caused the Financial Crisis … And They Will Do It Again and Again Unless They Are Removed From Power
So whatever you think of Bannon on a personal level, he could – if his statements reflect his real beliefs, and if he champions them in the Trump White House – help fix our broken financial system …