Banks, Busts, and Boors…

Marjorie Taylor Greene has given up the game again though, as usual, doesn’t realize it. She has taken to calling anybody to the left of her (that is, most Americans) “communists.” She has confessed that her crowd, whom she mistakenly calls the “silent majority,” has two emotions: fear and anger. Okay, two things. One, the cons are anything but “silent” and based on the pasting Former Guy took in the 2020 elections, they’re hardly the “majority,” either. The second thing is true, though. The loud-mouthed minority really DOES have but two emotions, fear and anger, and the conservative media bubble exists entirely to stoke those two emotions as often and aggressively as possible. It keeps ’em riled up. More importantly, it keeps them from thinking.

Emotions regularly overpower rational thought, especially the most primitive emotions. You know, like “fear” and “anger…”

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When Former Guy predicted – based on nothing, it turns out – that he was going to be “arrested” this coming Tuesday, March 21, he also called for protests. I’m not sure who’s left to fall out for such a spectacle. I thought any supporters willing (read: dumb enough) to come out and support him through protests were already serving time in prison for the last time he called for violence…

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Biden flew halfway around the world and made a surprise visit to Ukraine recently. It was a ballsy move. You can tell, for sure, because cons called it “irresponsible.” Apparently, Putin admired the move, though. Now HE has made a surprise visit to an occupied territory in Ukraine, Mariupol. One might have imagined Putin would have stopped by sooner to support his troops, given his much closer location. Biden had to fly halfway around the world and got there first. That’s forever, Vlad. Biden’s a braver boy than you…

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There’s an awful lot of chatter about the “trump-era” deregulation that allowed so many banks to set themselves up to fail causing them to switch immediately from staunchly Capitalist to definitely – if temporarily – Socialist. Well, except in the conservative bubble where they pretend the banks collapsed because that sexy, sexy green M&M put on flats instead of heels. (I guess it’s a fair question: who wants to have sex with an M&M in flats, fercrissakes?) These days, though, I find that sometimes, when a story breaks, the spin naturally aims at political enemies. But sometimes, the so-called “good guys” (our team) have participated, too. So I went checking.

A bit of background. Through irresponsible and unpunished criminal behavior, Wall Street crashed the American (then the world) economy in roughly 2008. Congress responded with new rules known collectively as “Dodd/Frank.” Dodd/Frank sort of forced banks to behave a bit more responsibly, so, of course, banks effing hated it and lobbied to change it.

As it happens, the Congress at the time of this particular deregulation (2018) was controlled by Republicans. Seventeen Senate Democrats DID join their Republican counterparts in the process, though. Worse? Barney Frank, the “Frank” part of “Dodd/Frank” supported the deregulation. Barney has gone on to other things since serving in Congress. He became a director of Signature Bank. He supported the loosening of his own regulations. Then, and you might want to sit down for this, his bank collapsed because it wasn’t properly Capitalized – the very deregulation he wanted.

So, yeah, it was Former Guy and it was mostly cons but some of the Dems played along. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, regulations are how society dictates the limits of avarice. Without regulations, as we’ve seen, the few with market power (meaning they control most of the money) will take more and more from those without market power (meaning you).

I’ll tell you this: I know things can be over-regulated. Of course they can. But when regulations are enacted in direct response to some previous market abuse, we should be very careful about rolling those rules back…

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There’s a little town near where I live called Sonoma. Sonoma is currently feeling assaulted by a couple of rich guys who are going around buying up the town one property at a time, using a variety of shell-companies to try to hide the fact that it’s just two guys.

This is the inevitable and direct result of the 2011 deregulation that allowed rich people to buy up all the single family homes. These guys own something like 100+ properties now and they’re still buying.

I’ll tell you this: we’d better put an end to this practice once and for all. Lack of affordable housing driven by corporate ownership of single family homes will very likely become a trigger point that unleashes such a backlash of fury I won’t be surprised when the Guillotine makes a re-appearance…

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