donderdag 27 oktober 2016

Hillary Clinton’s America, Wall Street in the Saddle

October 27, 2016

Tomgram: Nomi Prins, Too Big to Fail, Hillary-Style

Donald Trump has long campaigned on the promise of running the country the way he's run his businesses. On that basis, we essentially already know what it would mean if he entered the Oval Office and applied his personal business acumen to this nation (and the rest of the world). There's a surprisingly full record to cite. Who can forget, for instance, what happened to his signature gambling resorts in Atlantic City? Who can forget their serial failures in what was still relatively good times in that city, including the repeated trips to bankruptcy court and the way he stiffed local contractors and suppliers, running them out of business? As Russ Buettner and Charles Bagli of the New York Times summed it up: “He put up little of his own money, shifted personal debts to the casinos and collected millions of dollars in salary, bonuses, and other payments. The burden of his failures fell on investors and others who had bet on his business acumen.” 

In his pre-political years, he perfected what Kurt Eichenwald of Newsweek dubbed “the art of the bad deal”: “lost contracts, bankruptcies, defaults, deceptions, and indifference to investors.” And from every bad deal for those who supported him, he’s almost always walked away better off. All in all, it’s quite a record (and don’t even mention Trumped Up University). There is no reason to believe that this pattern of behavior would change in the White House. After all, The Donald’s record shows a remarkable consistency, so it's possible to imagine with a fair degree of accuracy what you’re going to get. 

Take election night 2012 when The Donald was still a Mitt Romney supporter. CNN recently reported on his tweets that night and judging by his comment on the Chinese invention of climate change, his complaints about polling violations, his outburst about “sham” elections, and in the wake of Romney’s loss his call for “revolution,” there hasn't been much truly new under the Trumpian sun in 2016 -- not even his last tweet of that night four years ago: "We have to make America great again!” In other words, his record should be considered remarkably predictive. So count on this: from the Oval Office, he’ll walk away a richer man, leaving the rest of us holding the bag, and his supporters, particularly white working class men, in a striking version of hell. 

Then, of course, there’s the other candidate. You know who -- the woman who never saw a bank CEO she couldn’t get a couple of hundred thousand dollars from for giving thoroughly unsurprising speeches. Today, TomDispatch regular Nomi Prins, author of All the Presidents' Bankers, explores what our world might be like if The Donald goes down in flames and Hillary Clinton enters the White House next January. Consider this, economically speaking, the definition of a hold-onto-your-hats election, no matter who wins. Tom

Waking Up in Hillary Clinton’s America 
Wall Street in the Saddle 

By Nomi Prins

As this endless election limps toward its last days, while spiraling into a bizarre duel over vote-rigging accusations, a deep sigh is undoubtedly in order. The entire process has been an emotionally draining, frustration-inducing, rage-inflaming spectacle of repellent form over shallow substance. For many, the third debate evoked fatigue. More worrying, there was again no discussion of how to prevent another financial crisis, an ominous possibility in the next presidency, whether Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton enters the Oval Office -- given that nothing fundamental has been altered when it comes to Wall Street’s practices and predation.

At the heart of American political consciousness right now lies a soul-crushing reality for millions of distraught Americans: the choices for president couldn’t be feebler or more disappointing. On the one hand, we have a petulant, vocabulary-challenged man-boar of a billionaire, who hasn’t paid his taxes, has regularly left those supporting him holding the bag, and seems like a ludicrous composite of every bad trait in every bad date any woman has ever had. On the other hand, we’re offered a walking photo-op for and well-paid speechmaker to Wall-Street CEOs, a one-woman money-raising machine from the 1% of the 1%, who, despite a folksiness that couldn’t look more rehearsed, has methodically outplayed her opponent.

With less than two weeks to go before E-day -- despite the Trumptilian upheaval of the last year -- the high probability of a Clinton win means the establishment remains intact. When we awaken on November 9th, it will undoubtedly be dawn in Hillary Clinton’s America and that potentially means four years of an economic dystopia that will (as would Donald Trump’s version of the same) leave many Americans rightfully anxious about their economic futures.

Further Reading:

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