Something To Believe In

We all need something to believe in.     God and country have always been a couple of biggies.   Thing is, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to believe in either one, what with the nearly daily expose’s on the predilection of the Roman Church for being an international club for pedophiles and the Senate and House acting like a pack of lap dogs for Wall Street and the insurance industry.   Nothing but a bunch of Pavlovian dogs, waiting with drool running from their mouths in anticipation of the next big money drop from lobbyists representing their corporate masters.

First we were handed a healthcare reform package without much reform.   We were left with Mr. Obama’s “it’s better than nothing at all” plan with no real regulatory teeth.  What we needed was a plan that would have eliminated death and illness as the only viable option for some who can’t afford to pay.  Something putting us on a parallel track with the rest of the industrialized world.   Something worthy of a civilized state.

We didn’t get it because members of the Senate and the House have been bought off by the health insurance industry.

If you think that’s an exaggeration, you really need to get out more.  Or at least read more.

And now comes word that our fine representatives in the U.S. Senate doubt they’ll be able to agree on a new package of regulations for the robber barons of Wall Street, before hitting a deadline for a “showdown vote” on Monday.

This is happening because not one Republican in the Senate is willing to vote for it.  Not one.

In an absolutely Orwellian move that would make Karl Rove bristle with pride,  the Republican’s are blaming the Democrats.

“We want to make sure that they don’t have the same kind of approach on financial services that they did on health care.” – Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.

Really?  Who was it that blocked significant reform on the healthcare package?  Was it…….the Republicans?  Yes!  It was!  So they now do an about-face and blame the Democrats for something they did.

Clever.

But where does this leave us?  The guys who put up the billions to bail out the banks that were deemed “too big to fail?”

Let’s review:  It’s been more than a year since we bailed out a visibly corrupt financial industry, initially providing $700 billion through the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008,  and still they can’t get it done.    The U.S. has filed a  case against Goldman Sachs, and there’s evidence that many or most or maybe all of the big financial players were conducting business in an unlawful fashion, putting us on the brink of a second Great Depression, and still they can’t get it done.

A piece in the Los Angeles Times yesterday, indicates that executives at Moody’s and Standard and Poor’s were pressured to dummy up ratings  on questionable and foul smelling “financial instruments” to give Wall Street what it wanted as we headed for a crash.  There is evidence that Wall Street continues to blindly conduct business as it was being conducted before the crash, that the high risk investing continues, putting us on a collision course with another another economic meltdown.

According to Simon Johnson, co-author of “13 Bankers:  The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown,” executive compensation at the nation’s largest banks hit record levels following the bailout in 2009 as the big bankers rewarded themselves for wrecking the economy.  And they did it with our money.  However,  Johnson says, “We have not fixed the financial system and its ability to take on financial risk.”

Prof. Johnson, the Ronald A. Kurtz Professor of Entrepreneurship at MIT’s Sloan School of Management, says deregulation in the financial industry has “led to great danger.”   The idea that completely unfettered mega-banks are good “is dangerous” and “must be stopped” he says.  “You must fear the arrival and entrenchment of a financial aristocracy.”

And still the United States Senate can’t get it done.   Or is it simply that they have been ordered not to get it done?

Of course it is.  But their orders aren’t coming from the great majority of Americans that voted them into office.  They are coming from those privileged few game players representing special interests out to drain off every last drop of blood flowing through the country’s economic veins.

First, they voted  to allow millions of Americans to continue to fall ill and in some cases die for lack of health care, while, at the same time, we will all be forced to give our money to an insurance industry which remains largely unregulated.

And they were just barely able to get that done.  The Republican Party and so called “Blue Dog” Democrats (Democrats that have been bought off), stood in the way.

And now it’s happening again.  This time they can’t reach agreement even though the country is again sliding toward the gaping yaw of economic disaster.

Wonder why so many people seem to be so angry as they form up in tea parties, coffee parties and other assorted protests?

Government by greed-driven insanity could be one reason.   The largest Christian church in the world having been shown to be morally and ethically corrupt could be another.

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