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Matt Taibbi on the Conventions, Wall Street, and the Election

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Matt Taibbi, Contributing Editor for Rolling Stone, talks about the election and the complicated relationship the Obama administration has with Elizabeth Warren and with the financial industry.

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Comments [17]

Jerry Flach

By 1999 the Glass-Steagall was already “dead” as the largest bank then affiliated with the largest US securities firms as allowed under the Federal Reserve Board’s then existing interpretation of the Glass-Steagall Act.

Sep. 06 2012 08:38 PM
David

I don't know if this has changed since last year but:

http://www.democracynow.org/2011/10/20/headlines/obama_tops_gop_candidates_in_wall_st_donations

"New figures show President Obama continues to pull in huge donations from the financial sector, with more money from Wall Street this year than all other Republican presidential candidates combined. According to the Washington Post, Obama has raised a total of $15.6 million from banks and other financial firms, with nearly $12 million of that going to the Democratic National Committee. Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney has raised less than half that much from Wall Street, around $7.5 million. A top banking executive and Obama fundraiser told the Washington Post that reports of Wall Street antagonism toward Obama "are exaggerated and overblown ... [but] it probably helps from a political perspective if he’s not seen as a Wall Street guy."

Sep. 06 2012 05:13 PM
Mike from Brooklyn

Matt Taibbi says that he doesn't understand why Wall Street isn't giving more to the Obama campaign (hedging more as he puts it). The reasons are simple:
1. A second Obama term will free him from re-election concerns, and allow him to pursue more aggressive regulatory policy (as he should).
2. The president will try to raise taxes on that class whereas Romney has stated he'd like to lower taxes for that same group.

Wall Street has nothing to lose.

Sep. 06 2012 01:16 PM
Amy from Manhattan

Actually, at least 2 people on Brian Lehrer's comment pages today did mention Glass-Steagall passing in Pres. Clinton's administration, & I think someone even mentioned it in the live chat during his speech.

Sep. 06 2012 12:43 PM
Bob West

Two corrections:

Leonard, more of us than you realize remain well aware of Clinton's role in starting the financial avalanche by signing the repeal of Glass-Steagall in response to big banks' claims they could no longer compete on an international basis with the restrictions that longstanding legislation imposed.

Matt, there's more appetite out here for coverage of these financial matters than you recognize. Keep up the good work.

Sep. 06 2012 12:42 PM
Joe from nearby

Please ask Matt about how Bush destroyed the "referral process," i.e. referring criminal evidence to prosecutors from investigating agencies.....thus choking off all the criminal prosecutions

Great work Matt!

Sep. 06 2012 12:42 PM
sanych

the change will only come when both the common people cannot live like they used to live and the ruling class cannot govern like it used to govern.

this is not the situation of today.

Sep. 06 2012 12:42 PM
jawbone

Pleae ask Taibbi about the passage of Graham-Leach-Bliley. My understanding is that Clinton's veto would have been easily overridden by a bipartisan supermajority. I also recall that Hillary pushed back on some parts of the bill, and Bill forced some few changes.

But, as I said, my recollection is it would have passed over his veto.

Any firmer facts on this from Matt (who I greatly respect for his reporting on Wall St and the Big Banksters).

Sep. 06 2012 12:41 PM
Sandy from Manhattan

Hugh, it's never a problem until it is. These days that can happens overnight. Rates can rocket overnight once confidence is lost. Again, we have examples. If our debt service load is almost a 3rd of our income now, what will it be if rates rise just a little bit let a lone go back to normal? Every program will be crowded out fast.

Sep. 06 2012 12:39 PM

Elizabeth Warren, speaking truth to power.

Sep. 06 2012 12:39 PM
Opal S. from NYC

Possibly Obama had such a big burden, he didn't want to spend the time and especially the money to fight the Wall St. criminals.

Sep. 06 2012 12:38 PM
Sandy from Manhattan

I'm not sure where this argument of over borrowing money is going... we now have examples, greece, spain, ireland, etc. it doesn't end well.

Sep. 06 2012 12:36 PM
Hugh Sansom

Here's a very simple economic point about the debt: The global markets in debt think there is little or no risk in US indebtedness. That is, the people who spend their lives evaluating national debt think the US is fine. How do we know this? The price of US carrying debt is the interest US has to pay. That interest is near zero.

Think about your own spending. If you were offered a loan at an interest rate near zero, would you take it? Wouldn't you take the largest loan you could get at that rate?

There is no US debt crisis. It's simple economics.

Sep. 06 2012 12:35 PM
Sam Feldman from New York

You two are so intent in imposing your cynicism and biases on the subject that you don't talk to Wall Street people and don't realize Wall Street is not "hedging its bets' with the President because Wall Street doesn't want the President re-elected. Wall Street believes the lack of leadership in the economy is why the economy is in paralysis. It's not about policy or enforcement, it's about leadership. Businessmen hate uncertainty.

Sep. 06 2012 12:34 PM
Rick from Brooklyn

NYT covers NC Treasurer trying to get $ back on LIBOR scandal.
NYT does not cover GE Capital Muni bond scandal.
Can Matt comment on how much they stole & if there will be a settlement with @ returned to all our affected muncipalities?

Sep. 06 2012 12:33 PM
Hugh Sansom

What are the numbers on Wall Street donations to Scott Brown vs. Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts?

With regard to the presidential race, Wall Street's thinking — greed — is clear: Enough is never enough. Obama may give them 90% of what they want. Romney will give them 120%.

Sep. 06 2012 12:28 PM
Moss from Westchester

Does either party have an official stance on fertility treatments and/or ED medication?

Sep. 06 2012 12:18 PM

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