Background: How De-Regulation Led To The Financial Crisis of 2008 & Why All Banks Need To Come With A Disclaimer Till The Glass-Steagal Act Is Re-Implemented
Salon: The case against Hillary Clinton: This is the disaster Democrats must avoid She's not the candidate of economic fairness, peace or a genuine progressive agenda. She's also not more electable
Famed economist Thomas Piketty recently offered a brief take on where things stand: “Sanders’ success today shows that much of America is tired of rising inequality … and intends to revive both a progressive agenda and the American tradition of egalitarianism. Hillary Clinton, who fought to the left of Barack Obama in 2008 on topics such as health insurance, appears today as if she is defending the status quo, just another heiress of the Reagan-Clinton-Obama political regime.” To explain, he points to wealth distribution under the past century’s presidents:
From 1930 to 1980 – for half a century – the rate for the highest US income (over $1m per year) was on average 82%, with peaks of 91% from the 1940s to 1960s (from Roosevelt to Kennedy), and still as high as 70% during Reagan’s election in 1980. … Reagan was elected in 1980 on a program aiming to restore a mythical capitalism said to have existed in the past. … The culmination of this new program was the tax reform of 1986, which ended half a century of a progressive tax system and lowered the rate applicable to the highest incomes to 28%.Democrats never truly challenged this choice in the Clinton (1992-2000) and Obama (2008-2016) years, which stabilized the taxation rate at around 40% (two times lower than the average level for the period 1930 to 1980). This triggered an explosion of inequality coupled with incredibly high salaries for those who could get them, as well as a stagnation of revenues for most of America – all of which was accompanied by low growth.
It’s hard to imagine that Hillary would break—much less break significantly—from this wealthy-friendly, bipartisan consensus.
One reason is her take on the financial sector. She’s made it clear that she won’t seek to reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, which Bill repealed, and whose absence is broadly considered central to the 2008-2009 financial crisis, during which countless Americans lost their savings, homes, and jobs, while major banks were bailed out from the public coffers and bank executives continued receiving massive bonuses. So, it doesn’t take much skepticism to see why Wall Street is donating so heavily to her campaign (to say nothing of her controversial paid speeches to the big banks, whose transcripts she refuses to release).
When it comes to the poorer end of the economic spectrum, we can rewind to Clinton’s time as first lady—or “co-president” as some called her—for more background. Recently Michelle Alexander noted that “Hillary wasn’t picking out china while she was first lady. She bravely broke the mold and redefined that job in ways no woman ever had before. She not only campaigned for Bill; she also wielded power and significant influence once he was elected, lobbying for legislation and other measures.”
Arguing that the Clintons decimated black America, Alexander offers a stunning anecdote:
In [Hillary’s] support for the 1994 crime bill, for example, she used racially coded rhetoric to cast black children as animals. “They are not just gangs of kids anymore,” she said. “They are often the kinds of kids that are called ‘super-predators.’ No conscience, no empathy. We can talk about why they ended up that way, but first we have to bring them to heel.”
When the Clintons left the White House in 2001, with the War on Crime and War on Drugs by then entrenched public policy, the United States had the highest rate of incarceration in the world. “Human Rights Watch reported that in seven states, African Americans constituted 80 to 90 percent of all drug offenders sent to prison, even though they were no more likely than whites to use or sell illegal drugs,” Alexander explains. She follows this with one of the clearest summaries of Clinton-era welfare reform:
The federal safety net for poor families was torn to shreds by the Clinton administration in its effort to “end welfare as we know it.” In his 1996 State of the Union address, given during his re-election campaign, Clinton declared that ‘the era of big government is over’ and immediately sought to prove it by dismantling the federal welfare system known as Aid to Families With Dependent Children (AFDC). The welfare-reform legislation that he signed—which Hillary Clinton ardently supported then and characterized as a success as recently as 2008—replaced the federal safety net with a block grant to the states, imposed a five-year lifetime limit on welfare assistance, added work requirements, barred undocumented immigrants from licensed professions, and slashed overall public welfare funding by $54 billion (some was later restored).Experts and pundits disagree about the true impact of welfare reform, but one thing seems clear: Extreme poverty doubled to 1.5 million in the decade and a half after the law was passed.
Many Hillary supporters argue that it’s unfair to judge her by Bill’s work as president. But even aside from her active engagement on these issues as first lady, it seems naive to imagine that she would somehow represent a significant break from this history. Hillary Clinton is more Wal-Mart board member and less friend to labor.
Note 1: These sorts of policies that help the few at the cost of the many are supported by the anti-Constitutionalists run by the Koch Brothers. Frankly, if you want to win over Democrats you can't be pro-Koch in any way. Being anti-Koch, given Hillary's recent pro-Keystone pipeline stance (a Koch project) may be an election winning strategy in and of itself.
Note 2: The Glass Steagall Act follows a way of governing that doesn't follow the gold standard of public policy making i.e. it doesn't provide for the General Welfare as per Article 1 Section 8 of the Constitution. It does provide for corporate welfare by making financial backup (in the form of bailouts or weird ass loans) a part of the status quo indefinitely. In pursuing the repeal of this time tested act, Bill Clinton had to believe the rantings of a guy following "economic advice" from a defunct fiction writer and then defend them which should make for good attacks. What Bill Clinton did with his Glass Stegal Act deflection was what Republicans do all the time when debunking claims about the Koch Brothers i.e. they say 'there is no 100 billion in profit to be made by Koch Brothers' (it's actually less) or when people found out Koch Industries was the largest land holder in the Koch Pipeline, after Kochs had time to move assets around, they can come back and said 'No, they don't have the largest investment in keystone lands' (its actually like second or third largest but it wasn't in 2014). What Bill Clinton did was say that SPECIFICALLY that act can't be linked to s SPECIFIC crisis point. The fact that his whole administration was pushing deregulation was not a talking point. A more appropriate question for Bill Clinton would be "Did your administration's deregulation of the financial industry, as per Alan Greenspan's recommendation, open up the way for it's misuse (as explained in this ancient cartoon) and thus the financial crises of 2008?' (probably leave out the cartoon part or he'll claim ignorance).
Bill Clinton Paved The Way For The Financial Crisis Of 2008 With His Drive For Deregulation Culminating With The Repeal Of The Glass Steagall Act
Hillary Clinton Joined Everybody In Mocking Wall Street AFTER The Financial Crisis Struck. A Crisis Her Husband Paved The Way For
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