Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Durbin: banks "own" the Congress; Dodd: shhh!

Who does Senator Dodd represent?

From Glenn Greenwald writing for Salon.com:

Sen. Dick Durbin, on a local Chicago radio station this week, blurted out an obvious truth about Congress that, despite being blindingly obvious, is rarely spoken: "And the banks -- hard to believe in a time when we're facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created -- are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place."

The story is long, but a fantastic read if you want to understand The Revolving Door that exists in Washington.

For instance, House Banking Chairman Barney Frank recently lost his Chief of Staff, Michael Paese. Now Mr. Paese is the Chief Lobbyist for (drumroll please...) Goldman Sachs! And where did Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner find his Chief of Staff? Mark Patterson came to Treasury from (drumroll please...) Goldman Sachs! Where did Hank Paulson and Robert Rubin work before running the Treasury Department? You guessed it... Goldman Sachs!

And now Dick Durbin says that the banks "own" the US Congress?! Shocking!

But wait, there's more!

Bloomberg News reports that the Fed's Bernanke is pretending to be increasing transparency:

The Fed’s effort at greater transparency in its emergency lending programs is a response to an April 2 nonbinding budget amendment sponsored by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat, and the panel’s ranking Republican, Alabama Senator Richard Shelby, Bernanke said. That proposal passed 96-2.

The Fed chief did not mention a tougher measure, also nonbinding, sponsored by Vermont Senator
Bernard Sanders, an independent, that called on the Fed to identify borrowers. The measure passed 59-39 on the same day.

In the second "Sense of the Senate" vote, when Bernie Sanders wanted the Fed to identify the banks that got bailed out with our tax dollars, Senator Dodd opposed the measure.

And this is the same Senator who feels it's appropriate to disclose the "sources and methods" of America's intelligence efforts? (Think torture memo.)

Senator Dodd opposes transparency. He opposes good government. And based on the words of his own Senate Majority Whip, Dick Durbin, it appears that Banking Chairman Dodd actually works for the banks.

Tim White

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The apple doesn't fall too far from the tree. Dodd's father, Sen. Thomas Dodd, was tossed out by the voters after he was censured by the Senate for corruption. Let's hope history repeats itself.