Protesting the Banks

In the past, several of our readers have asked if we could help organize some sort of popular political movement to protest some of the policies that we have criticized. That isn’t anything we have any experience or expertise in, however.But in case you are interested, I wanted to let you know about a new group called A New Way Forward that is organizing rallies on April 11. Their platform is pretty straightforward:

NATIONALIZE: Experts agree — Insolvent banks that are too big to fail must incur a temporary FDIC intervention – no more blank check taxpayer handouts.

REORGANIZE: Current CEOs and board members must be removed and bonuses wiped out. The financial elite must share in the cost of what they have caused.

DECENTRALIZE: Banks must be broken up and sold back to the private market with new antitrust rules in place– new banks, managed by new people. Any bank that’s “too big to fail” means that it’s too big for a free market to function.

A New Way Forward is being organized by two people from the Participatory Politics Foundation, although the two groups are not officially related.

By James Kwak

10 thoughts on “Protesting the Banks

  1. Since is the first time for me on this site, I can’t speak to your history, but this certainly is sensible.

    I especially like your point that a bank (or any non-government business) that is too big to fail is to big for a free market to function. Implicit in that is that the kings and queens of Wall Street and American business need to be dethroned.

  2. The trouble with rallies like these is that they draw too many crackpots and are therefore easily ignored.

    Writing and/or calling your Congressworms — repeatedly — is more likely to be effective. (Or rather, just as likely, since the odds either way are zero.)

  3. I especially like seeing the third part. There’s been way too little acknowledgement, even among nationalization advocates, that no policy can work if it leaves in place any financial structure of such size that anyone could ever again argue it is “Too Big to Fail”.

    Whether the Too Big to Fail orthodoxy is true or not, the very existence of any such structure is a clear and present danger to economic and social stability. We see how the effects are those of a protection racket.

    No one must ever be allowed to hold society at gunpoint like this again.

  4. James,

    Can you please write a clear “CITIZENS OF THE UNITED STATES EMANCIPATE US FROM THE BADBANKS PROCLAMATION” detailing the money that has gone, starting with AIG free givaway, and everything that is suspect and likely in the category of black hole spending by our government.

    It would seem fair to give the entities that have US Gov money a 1-3 month limit on their borrowing, and if they couldn’t figure out how to pay back the money and stay in business, the company would be shut down, reorganized etc.

    The money that has gone into the black hole scam, could have been used by the FDIC or the SIPC to help protect innocent people who have their life savings at stake…

    By calling back the various backstops and givaway to AIG, spent and not moving forward with this MADNESS, our country’s chances of remaining solvent would increase because we could face the honest truth that certain parties infected our system, and the HONEST NON SELF DEALING WAY TO RESOLVE THIS INFECTION IS TO ” ALLOW THESE INFECTED INSTITUTIONS TO SHUT DOWN” and then let other entities run by people with scruples take over the job of banking for the country!

    This is a black hole problem, and if it isn’t stopped, chances for any kind of prosperity for anyone but BADBANKERS (not all Bankers are bad!) becomes more and more remote.

  5. One way to protest these banks is to use safe, well regulated credit unions and on-line bankers like Pay Pal and Activia. These may be the best banking options for the future

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