Language of Financial Reform

Category: Think Tank

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

15 Responses to “The Secret Memo To Kill Financial Regulatory Reform”

  1. Taliesn says:

    Well this memo proves what an full bore ass another *free market * ideologue has been ( and most likely continues to be as Vice chairman of the Investment Bank division of UBS ) , good ol’ former Texas Senator Phil Gramm forever flush with his now famous ” We’ve become a nation of whiners” ponticatum while being the financial advisor to then “uttrely failed” presidential candidate John McCain.
    Let’s see now , UBS , there was this 1/30/2009 Reuters quote by Swiss Nat.Bank Chair Roth stating that UBS & Credit Suisse are the two best capitalised banks in the world which was followed by the 2/9/2009 announcement that it lost $20 billion Swiss Francs in 2008. So is Phil Gramm part of a damage control strategy. hu-hu..ha,ha, ….Ha Ha HAHAHAH!!!

  2. Taliesn says:

    Correction_”We’ve become a nation of whiners” potificatum…

  3. Taliesn says:

    “Pontificatum” my 2nd bad….alright caffeine is now cut-off.

  4. Tarkus says:

    I LOVE the name “The Word Doctors” – doctored as in “to alter deceptively” . Very clever and punny in a contemptible way toward the targeted electorate!

  5. Taliesn says:

    If your handle is “Tarkus” you’re more than a passing ELP fan now aren’tchya. ;-)

  6. bsneath says:

    My take away from the Luntz paper is that the average American thinks that government is by its nature inefficient, ineffective and prone to corruption. Therefore the reliance on government to fix our problems is a mistake.

    Specifically with respect to a consumer finance protection agency I think consumers may be behaving like credit addicts. They have become so accustomed to relying on credit card access (in spite of the high fees and interest charges) and they fear a new government agency might now take this access away.

    Personally, while I agree with their general assessment of the limits inherent in government agencies (the SEC being a good example), I think a Consumer Protection Agency is a necessary, if not essential, government service.

    Apparently the Supreme Court struck down usury laws years ago. This has permitted banks to entice large swaths of society who are unprepared to manage credit to become overextended on easily accessible credit cards. Unregulated, banks are able to charge very high interest rates to offset default rates when times go bad.

    Perhaps Banks will self regulate better now that they have taken a beating by issuing cards to those who cannot manage them responsibly. Never the less, 30% interest rates and $35 cascading debt card fees are examples of onerous business practices that should not be allowed under any circumstances in my opinion.

  7. CardinalRam says:

    We need to recognize that the analysis he did on what words and concepts people respond to is probably very valid. What is frightening is that the opponents of reform have learned how to take those words and concepts and utilize them better than those of us fighting for reform.

    The lesson from this is that tactics are politically neutral. It is the purposes to which they are used that are good or bad. In the 1920s, then British Colonel, J.F.C.Fuller pioneered many of the concepts of mobile armoured warfare. The British, French, and Americans ignored his lessons. The Germans, especially Hienz Guderian, did not. The Allies and Russians finally relearned those lessons only after having been “tutored” in their practical use by the German Blitzkrieg attacks in 1939 – 1942.

    Orwell, who would be horrified by the business/social reactionary alliance, identified these political tactics. The enemies of reform have mastered them, after the progressives proved to be more “conservative” in their choice of tactics (think the Mass. Special Election and anti-Health Care Reform debacles). The operative question is how long will it take the progressives take to “learn” these tactics and employ them as effectively.

    I hope not too long, or Volcker ghost may be restless indeed.

  8. DeDude says:

    The sheeple are ignorant and easy to manipulate, and these guy know how to use that fact. Making a science out of that exploitation is just an expansion of what was done to sell products. So no big surprise that the right wing got the first and best machines for that, while the left has barely begun to understand that they have to do the same. It actually does not matter if what you say is factually incorrect as long as it is said with conviction and hit some of those inherent prejudices that sits deep in many people.

    It takes salesmanship to convince the underclass that big government is their enemy and that it is much better to let “we the Wall street banksteres” run the show than “we the people”, but you got to hand it to them they did it.

    It would seem impossible to convince people that in the business relationship between bank professionals with a career of understanding difficult money transactions and a regular Joe who maybe ones before in his life has purchased a house, it was the regular Joe who pulled one over and swindled the professional to let him borrow money and purchase more house than he could afford. But the banksters propaganda machine has sold that absurd story to huge number of idiots.

  9. catman says:

    George Carlin would have had a field day with this.

  10. solanic says:

    I agree with bsneath “average American thinks that government is by its nature inefficient, ineffective and prone to corruption”. Obviously the other side is “so the free market will look out for ya”?!

    Uneducated people who find economics so very complicated and go in debt up their butt plus vote against themselves.

    Maybe the “solution” is some econ-finance-reform-is-necessary foundation that pushes our talking points just using the truth and speaks to the masses.

  11. DeDude says:

    With Reagan’s media reform it was no longer required for networks to be balanced. Then you got Fox with their 24h fact free “news” and pretty blond ladies to draw in the J6P viewers. The idea that big government was somehow the enemy and leaving it all to the free market forces would create nirvana with “we all become millionaires” was an easy sell if you did not have to base “news” on facts or allow balanced debate. The fact is that all large organizations become inefficient regardless of whether they are owned by “we the people” or “we the shareholders” or “me the billionaire”. Public utility companies provide better service for lower prices, but you will never hear Fox quote that fact.

  12. Marc P says:

    @bsneath:
    I agree with your thesis that consumers have become addicted to credit and will now thwart efforts at reform because of fear that their credit addiction will be curtailed.

    I would add that our government also has become addicted to credit and is worried about its drug supply being cut off. I don’t mean merely the government’s debt. More important, the government wants GDP to go up by any means. The only way it sees of assured GDP increases each year is to allow citizens to borrow more so they can spend more, and to encourage them. This second factor is more pernicious.

    The correct course would be to let GDP settle back to its natural, non-drugged level in a soft recovery. History has shown that the cure for over stimulation is not more drugs, otherwise a cold-turkey crash is inevitable.

    Cue Amy Winehouse: http://www.metrolyrics.com/rehab-lyrics-amy-winehouse.html

  13. Zenster says:

    The BBC addressed the question: “Why do people vote against their own interests?” last Saturday. In the article 2 democratic authors give their explanation as to why this is happening.

    Drew Weston concluded stories always trump statistics, which means the politician with the best stories is going to win: “One of the fallacies that politicians often have on the Left is that things are obvious, when they are not obvious. “Obama’s administration made a tremendous mistake by not immediately branding the economic collapse that we had just had as the Republicans’ Depression, caused by the Bush administration’s ideology of unregulated greed. The result is that now people blame him.”

    Thomas Frank believes right-wing politics has become a vehicle for chanelling this popular anger against intellectual snobs. The result is that many of America’s poorest citizens have a deep emotional attachment to a party that serves the interests of its richest. “It’s like a French Revolution in reverse in which the workers come pouring down the street screaming more power to the aristocracy.”

    Unfortunately it’s not a party thing now. Both sides are arrogantly corrupt & only out for their own personal interests. Can this insanity be reversed short of a revolution that purges DC & establishes a level playing field?

  14. Simon says:

    The belief in inefficient government by the people is useful for the corporates for obvious reasons. They understand well the control they wield and a renewed faith in government would not enhance that.

    In addition it is fundamentally unfortunate that a democratic population has little faith in its elected representatives to carry out the tasks of a government well.

    If the people feel they need visible leadership but do no trust them to do the work of government what have they got? Someone will fill the vacuume. Perhaps this is the goal of the so-called elites. To allow figure head leadership open to manipulation by the power brokers and their representatives.