it's good to be a banksta
February 14, 2009 9:19 AM   Subscribe

Simon Johnson on Bill Moyers [1] (and, prolifically, making the public media rounds on npr [2]) tackling the bailout of the American Oligarchs, a.k.a. banksters...


Economic Contagion - "Listen to this interview with former Goldman banker John Talbott for some refreshing straight talk (Leonard Lopate Show)."

and peripherally related...

clay shirky on, essentially, '' (42 mb; approx 92 minutes) and bill moyers with nikki giovanni, which was (and whois) also awesome!

also recently related moyers on the blue 1 2
posted by kliuless (16 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
Still relevant...

Obama is the perfect embodiment of the system as it now exists. He will challenge it on no issue of importance. To the contrary, he will advance the goals of the ruling class and ensure that the powerful are fully protected. He will lie to you about all of this, as he already has on numerous occasions -- but as I have noted, many Americans, including many liberals and progressives, are enthusiastically willing to believe anything. - Arthur Silber
posted by Joe Beese at 9:40 AM on February 14, 2009 [3 favorites]

That's some of the scariest stuff I've heard recently. The President needs to hire this guy.
posted by Flex1970 at 10:42 AM on February 14, 2009

Where did the term 'bankster' come from? Is it meant to evoke 'ganster'? When I read it I thought of it as some juvenile web 1.5 play on "napster", back in the day.

I was thinking the other day that proponents of bank nationalization really ought to seize on the term "Zombie Bank", after all, who wants to go on record as supporting Zombie banks? And more to the point, Zombie has a great and visceral connotation as something you're supposed to kill.

You could use slogans like "Kill the Zombie Banks!" or "Zombie Banks are Eating Our Economy!" (Or how about "Zombie Banks: Threat or Menace?!")
posted by delmoi at 10:47 AM on February 14, 2009

Also, was actually pretty lame, I'm not sure if Clay Shirky actually participated or not but setting up a website where people could talk about issues, then be basically ignored except for some cherry picked comments that already back up your agenda isn't really all that exciting. Also, each feature they implemented required a new log-on, which was highly annoying.
posted by delmoi at 10:52 AM on February 14, 2009

Very impressed with the John Talbott interview (the Moyers-Johnson interview was a bit too talking head-y). Here's a guy who was part of the system, who saw the flaws in advance, and sees no lasting solution in the current plans. He's got me very depressed right now.

So how do we take up his (and Johnson's) challenge? How does the ordinary citizen help take financial power back from the banking industry?
posted by Popular Ethics at 10:59 AM on February 14, 2009

Where did the term 'bankster' come from? Is it meant to evoke 'ganster'?

Sept. 15th, 2008: "That's a nice lookin' economy ya got there. It'd be a shame if somethin' happened to it..." -- Henry Paulson, OB, Original Bankster
posted by ryoshu at 11:01 AM on February 14, 2009 [2 favorites]

You could use slogans like "Kill the Zombie Banks!" or "Zombie Banks are Eating Our Economy!" (Or how about "Zombie Banks: Threat or Menace?!")

Zombie Banks want to eat your CHAAAAAANGE.
posted by JHarris at 11:47 AM on February 14, 2009 [2 favorites]

This is great, Moyers always gets right to the heart of things.
posted by nola at 11:58 AM on February 14, 2009

I assumed "banksta" was supposed to evoke "Damn It Feels Good To Be A Gangsta by Geto Boys", which I'm listening to right now.

Well, was -- now I'm on to "Shove this Jay-Oh-Bee".

That is all.
posted by jepler at 1:00 PM on February 14, 2009

Maureen Dowd on Geithner: Trillion Dollar Baby
posted by homunculus at 1:04 PM on February 14, 2009

Awesome post as usual kliuless.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 1:39 PM on February 14, 2009

the zombie bank parlance has been around at least since the S&L crisis... (and a quick check of wikipedia for provenance is, uncharacteristically, unhelpful ;) but yea:
Never, ever feed the zombies! Zombie banks beg for money. They are very clever. They come up with ways you can give them money while pretending not to give them money, such as guaranteeing their assets, guaranteeing new debt issues, or buying up assets at "hold to maturity" values. Just say no! A healthy financial system cannot be run by zombies. "Rescuing" insolvent banks makes about as much sense as tying string to the arms of a loved one's corpse so it can come to the dinner table as a marionette. For a while that may be comforting (or not), but pretty soon it's sure to smell really bad, and it's gonna ooze. If you think you have engineered a miraculous turnaround, you have only made matters worse. An undead bank is an abomination. It will pretend good health but hide a rot. It will afflict you, over and over and over again, with harrowing near insolvencies (cf Citibank). Dead banks must be allowed to die. [1]
sinfest! (banktron)
posted by kliuless at 7:00 PM on February 14, 2009

I was watching this just last night. Throughout the whole thing I kept wondering what his hidden agenda was. IMF-types tend to be supportive of big banking, so I couldn't help but think that while I agree with his point, I can't help but think he has some ulterior motive.
posted by wierdo at 10:34 AM on February 15, 2009

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