The Republicans apparently think it’s too soon to start debating Wall Street reform, and the Democrats didn’t seem to mind too much.
After all, their secret weapon is coming to town: The banker America loves to hate, Goldman-Sach’s Lloyd Blankfein, who will testify Tuesday before the Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.
But the political theater can’t conceal what’s really happening. The lobbyists are working overtime working to kill, dismember or water down legislation.
The public’s continuing frustration and rage over the on-going bailout and continuing disconnect between Wall Street and Main Street finds little expression in what passes for debate in D.C.
A handful of Democratic senators – Kaufman, Shaheen, Merkley, Brown, Sanders, Levin and Cantwell – are waging a battle for the party’s soul against a leadership and administration that wants only as much reform as will not offend Wall Street. Meanwhile, the Republican leadership postures and preens and preaches about how the Dems’ proposals will hurt Main Street while they try to woo Wall Street campaign donors away from the Democrats.
What we have been getting from the Obama administration are words of caution, from the president to top economic adviser Lawrence Summers.
The Fourteenth Banker suggests a disinvestment campaign like the one that brought pressure on South Africa.
There will also be demonstrations across the country all week to galvanize public support for reform.