By Simon Johnson
On Thursday evening, the Lehrer Newshour ran my discussion with Paul Solman on American financial history and previous attempts to constrain the power of big banks – covering the main points in chapter 1 of 13 Bankers. On Paul’s part of the Newshour website, we also talk about “astroturf” organizations that pretend to be reformist but are really just stalking horses for corporate interests opposed to reform.
We covered a lot of ground (and much of Manhattan) in 8 minutes, but we missed one potential irony. At the American Museum of Natural History, above the Teddy Roosevelt statue (and not readable, it turns out afterwards, in any of the shots) there was a huge banner celebrating an exhibit made possible in part by David Koch (a trustee and major funder of their dinosaur wing).
Teddy Roosevelt would have loved the irony of appearing under a banner with Mr. Koch’s name.