Ellen Brown: How America (and Los Angeles) can free itself from Wall Street

NY Stock Exchange Wall Street

NY Stock Exchange Wall Street. Photo courtesy Truthdig.

 

As the corporate establishment rallies its media to push back the grassroots groundswell for public banking, Ellen Brown in Truthdig writes a powerful call to action to free ourselves from Wall Street:

Wall Street owns the country. That was the opening line of a fiery speech that populist leader Mary Ellen Lease delivered around 1890. Franklin Roosevelt said it again in a letter to Colonel House in 1933, and Sen. Dick Durbin was still saying it in 2009. ‘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,’ Durbin said in an interview. ‘And they frankly own the place.’”

Brown continues:

“In Los Angeles, the City Council was forced to reduce the city’s budget by 19 percent following the banking crisis, slashing essential services, while Wall Street has not budged on the $4.9 million it claims annually from the city on its swaps. Wall Street banks are now collecting more from Los Angeles just in fees than it has available to fix its ailing roads.

“Local governments have been in bondage to Wall Street ever since the 19th century despite multiple efforts to rein them in. Regulation has not worked. To break free, we need to divest our public funds from these banks and move them into our own publicly owned banks. …

“On Sept. 20, the Los Angeles Times editorial board threw cold water on this effort, calling the amendment “half-baked” and “ill-conceived,” and recommending a “no” vote.

“Yet not only was the measure well-conceived, but L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson has shown visionary leadership in recognizing its revolutionary potential. He sees the need to declare our independence from Wall Street. He has said that the country looks to California to lead, and that Los Angeles needs to lead California. The people deserve it, and the millennials whose future is in the balance have demanded it.”

[Read the full article]

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