“See that 500-pound gorilla?”—the opinion piece by Jim Duenow in the Nov. 11 issue of New Times—is a timely reminder of a major reason for our national deficit … as far as it goes. I’d like to add an “800-pound gorilla,” and that is the rapacious corporate sector with its unending appetite for megabucks with its gazillions in “compensation” for its top engorgers.
“Credit default swaps,” “leveraged buyouts,” “derivatives” that few understand—these and other terms trip off the tongue. Go see Inside Job at The Palm Theatre, if it’s still playing. “Greed is good” still is king on Wall Street. The yokels on Main Street are the victims.
“Deficit, what deficit?” query Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, AIG and the other present-day captains of industry. “We’re doing God’s work,” cynically snickered the CEO of Goldman Sachs a couple of years back.
There are 535 members of Congress. There are more than 5,000 lobbyists in Washington, D.C., for the financial titans feeding at the trough.
Then there’s the infamous Citizens United decision by the U.S. Supreme Court equating corporations with people in terms of First Amendment rights and political contributions, permitting foreign corporations to also kick in unlimited amounts to political campaigns, and loopholes to get around disclosure provisions for those contributions.
Welcome to a short course on the American political system.