Tag: Diane Wood

Diane Wood versus the leviathans.


According to Peter Boone and Simon Johnson, the six largest banks currently have assets in excess of 63% of GDP:

The president is absolutely correct that our priority should be to limit the size of our largest banks and to reduce substantially the risks that can be taken by any financial entity that is backed, implicitly or explicitly, by the federal government. As a result of the crisis and various government rescue efforts, the largest six banks in our economy now have total assets in excess of 63 percent of GDP (based on the latest available data). This is a significant increase from even 2006, when the same banks’ assets were around 55 percent of GDP, and a complete transformation compared with the situation in the United States just 15 years ago, when the six largest banks had combined assets of only around 17 percent of GDP. If the status quo persists, we are set up for another round of the boom-bailout-bust cycle that the head of financial stability at the Bank of England now terms a “doom loop.”

In recent decades we have witnessed an ever-growing war-mongering police state merging power with private corporations that increasingly suck the wealth of our nation into fewer and fewer hands and grotesquely warp the political process using secrecy, bribery, extortion, theft, war-profiteering, revolving doors between government and the private sector, and propaganda through concentrated media ownership.  The confluence and concentration of political, financial, media and technological leviathans has transformed us into a self-cannibalizing society.  

Given the massive financialization engorging our economy and political system, and especially in the wake of destruction from the 2008 “financial crisis,”  it remains shocking that the Supreme Court saw fit to decide yet another ideological 5-4 split favoring corporations, with Kennedy again providing the swing vote.  The Citizens United ruling can only hasten the pace of our “doom loop,” which we literally cannot afford.  The replacement Justice Stevens is a critical event that Obama cannot fumble.