Saturday, May 15, 2010

Sen. Cantwell: Outcry by American People Needed to Pass Glass-Steagall | LaRouchePAC

Sen. Cantwell: Outcry by American People Needed to Pass Glass-Steagall LaRouchePAC


May 15, 2010 (LPAC)—PBS's "To The Contrary" program, hosted by Bonnie Erbe, began airing an interview with Glass Steagall co-sponsor Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), a show taped on May 12 clearly designed to build support for passing Glass-Steagall. The syndicated show will air nationally this weekend at different times, on 260 PBS stations.
The American people understand intuitively why we have to return to Glass Steagall, Sen. Cantwell argued, and the law has bipartisan support, but to ensure passage, "it may take the American people having an outcry, over the fact, that after all that's happened, some people here in Congress still don't get it. That that's the kind of safety and safeguards that we deserve."

After Erbe's interview of Cantwell (see below), a heated debate followed among Erbe and her four panelists. D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton defended Glass-Steagall, strongly, blaming the "worst recession of all time" on its repeal, with backing by Erbe, against the angry rejection by Genevieve Wood of the British Fabian Society's Heritage Foundation, of any return to Glass-Steagall.

A transcript of the interview follows:

Host ERBE: "The Democratic Senator proposes re-instating the Glass-Steagall Act, the Depression-era law, repealed a decade ago. That law set up a strict division between regular commercial banking and investment banking, so banks could not buy risky investments with depositors' money. This week I interviewed Senator Cantwell on what she thinks needs to be done to prevent future market meltdown."

CANTWELL: "Well, its pretty scary. The American people obviously don't want to have a roller coaster on Wall Street. We already know what happened in 2008, and that was scary enough for us. So, we want to get back to stable banking, and we want to get back to an investment market that has the right amount of oversight and transparency so that we know that regulators can find anybody who is manipulating the market, or doing something untowards, to create some sort of device that is putting them at an advantage. And so, that kind of functionality, we did away with in 2000. And we need to put the rules back into Wall Street."
ERBE: "What are those rules? Are you talking about Glass-Steagall, or something else?"

CANTWELL: "Well, I certainly am a big supporter of Glass-Steagall, which would be to go back to what we had prior to 2000, which is the separation of commercial banking from investment banking.

"If you think about it, they are two different functions. Investment banking is about taking risks. But with commercial banking, you want your deposits to be secure. But when you let your deposits—yours and mine—be used by those investment houses, which are huge, risk-taking ventures, it really does put those savings and those deposits at risk.

"And we should go back to separating them. I think the American people know this. They get it intuitively. They know that there was a reason in the last Depression that we got to this point.

"So, what's taking you so long! Go back to separating it. So we'll have a vote on that.

"But we also need to regulate these derivatives, these new financial tools that came into the marketplace in the late '90s, and make sure that they have the oversight of the Commodities Futures Trading Commission.
"Right now, hamburger in America—beef futures—has more oversight than some of these derivatives!"
ERBE: "How much support do you have for re-instating Glass-Steagall?"

CANTWELL: "Well, we'll find out. I would hope that we'd have a lot of bi-partisan support on both sides of the aisle, but this isn't really about being Democrat or Republican. If you— you know, if you think about it, this is about whether you're going to have the right system in place to protect Americans going forward. And while this was a big blow-up about derivatives, you know, these investment houses will continue to be creative. They"ll continue to be creative about how they take risk. But, you know, we want to keep the rest of the commercial banking community separate from that."
ERBE: "I mean, seriously, do think this will go through? A re-instatement of Glass-Steagall? Because we know that it became law, right after the Great Depression, and then the banking industry spent 70 years lobbying against it, and got it thrown out, or not renewed in Congress. And now that its back, you must be facing a mountain of opposition from financial institutions."
CANTWELL: "My personal impression, my personal views, are: it will be re-instated. But, I'll bet you, we'll end up with a two-step process. It may take the American people having an outcry, over the fact that after all that's happened, some people here in Congress still don't get it. That that's the kind of safety and safeguards that we deserve."

Check out my website. http://www.icelandcrash.com

1 comment:

Greg said...

Appreciate your posting this and the heroic struggle of the citizens of Iceland (not subjects of her royal highness). You are one of the first to publicize the interview. Hopefully the internet advantages over flesh and blood contact will overcome the delaying and supression tactics of Dodd, Obama (Summers, Geitner, Volcker), and Reid. The Atlantic Alliance is not dead but heroically resurrected and surmounted by the return to sovereign nataion state rule, with Iceland showing the kind of guts that the USA can learn from.