More on Occupy Wall Street
On my way to work this morning, I noticed signs covering the East Village promoting the Occupy Wall Street march this afternoon. Positive sign, I think: the sheer mass of dedicated liberals in New York is such that it would not take that much mobilization to reach a serious tipping point. One of the undeniable advantages of trying to pick this place to attempt to launch a mass movement.
I’m currently working at a client that was bailed out in the financial crisis. It’s truly shocking to get a first-hand look inside the titans of finance to see how deep the rot goes. The fact is that “socialism for the rich, capitalism for the rest of us” is not merely a slogan. This client has been given a reprieve in order to get its affairs in order, and it has not done so. It remains an effective ward of the state, is in breathtaking internal disarray and I am deeply concerned that its leadership is in no position to judge its financial position.
When the inevitable European banking crisis occurs, I have no idea what will happen. There’s no way that US financial institutions will be fully insulated, and even if they are left nominally solvent I doubt they can survive the loss of confidence in the global financial system. Dexia may be 2011’s Bear Stearns…or even worse, its Creditanstalt. Because this time no one thinks Congress will bail them out again, and the Fed has been legally barred from doing so by Dodd-Frank. You can smell the fear here – their social safety net has disintegrated the same way that the Chamber of Commerce has been trying to do to Medicare & Social Security.
If there is a true financial crisis that isn’t shoved under the rug like in 2008…I’m not sure what would happen. Economically or politically. But if the left can mobilize this time, maybe it won’t go to waste and the 99% can wrestle back some of our power.