Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo , Citigroup, and Bank of America.
These are the 6 banks that control influence over an amount of wealth that is equivalent to 60% of America's GNP.
GNP is the total value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a particular year, plus income earned by its citizens (including income of those located abroad), minus income of non-residents located in that country. Basically, GNP measures the value of goods and services that the country's citizens produced regardless of their location.
3/5ths of all American incomes, goods and services are under the influence of 6 Big Banking trusts.
The question is, have the banks bigger than the Government that is supposed to represent the people and their best interests? Better yet, is the U.S. at the mercy of an unstoppable oligarchy?
Quotes, links and more below the fold
In an interview with Bill Moyers that I highly suggest to everyone, economists James Kwak and Simon Johnson explain how these 6 banking trusts control 60% of GNP, and what that means to the state of Democracy in America.
Bill Moyers: And you write that they control 60 percent of our gross national product?
James Kwak: They have assets equivalent to 60 percent of our gross national product. And to put this in perspective, in the mid-1990s, these six banks or their predecessors, since there have been a lot of mergers, had less than 20 percent. Their assets were less than 20 percent of the gross national product.
Bill Moyers: And what's the threat from an oligarchy of this size and scale?
Simon Johnson: They can distort the system, Bill. They can change the rules of the game to favor themselves. And unfortunately, the way it works in modern finance is when the rules favor you, you go out and you take a lot of risk. And you blow up from time to time, because it's not your problem. When it blows up, it's the taxpayer and it's the government that has to sort it out.
Bill Moyers: So, you're not kidding when you say it's an oligarchy?
James Kwak: Exactly. I think that in particular, we can see how the oligarchy has actually become more powerful in the last since the financial crisis. If we look at the way they've behaved in Washington. For example, they've been spending more than $1 million per day lobbying Congress and fighting financial reform. I think that's for some time, the financial sector got its way in Washington through the power of ideology, through the power of persuasion. And in the last year and a half, we've seen the gloves come off. They are fighting as hard as they can to stop reform.
Simon Johnson: I know people react a little negatively when you use this term for the United States. But it means political power derived from economic power. That's what we're looking at here. It's disproportionate, it's unfair, it is very unproductive, by the way. Undermines business in this society. And it's an oligarchy like we see in other countries.
Again, I strongly encourage one and all to read this interview in it's entirety.
I hear Republican politicians talking about tyranny and slavery to the Government. Ironic, then, that it appears the banks are the ones who own us. The same banks that own the Republican party. Irony, indeed.
So what happens when every special interest in America drives the bus? What happens the banks bet on those special interests and against the interests of the American people? What happens when those big banks bet against America, as they did in 2008?
What happens when the billionaire Oligarchs become more powerful than the Government that is elected by the People? What happens when the politicians elected to serve the people instead solely serve the oligarchs?
Often I laugh to myself when I tell people that the only way to try and figure out what a Republicans and their media mouthpieces are saying is to just believe the opposite is true. Reverse Republican speech and hold it up to a mirror and you can see the truth. Sadly, amidst the SOCIAMALISM cries we have ignored the problem oligarch driven corporatism has unleashed on our nation.
Despite reform efforts, the real problem is not being addressed, and that is the massive concentration of the wealth among the richest Americans while the rest of us suffer in debt and varying degrees of poverty. We need to redistribute the wealth out of the hands of the banks and the oligarchs if a viable middle and working class is ever to re-emerge in America. If not, how can America avoid becoming a third world country with a super wealth oligarchy in permanent power?
I leave you with these ominous words, but I hope we can find someway to overcome the superspecial interests that OWN this country.
The Ministry of Peace concerns itself with war, the Ministry of Truth with lies, the Ministry of Love with torture and the Ministry of Plenty with starvation. These contradictions are not accidental, nor do they result from ordinary hypocrisy; they are deliberate exercises in doublethink. For it is only by reconciling contradictions that power can be retained indefinitely. In no other way could the ancient cycle be broken.
If human equality is to be for ever averted -- if the High, as we have called them, are to keep their places permanently -- then the prevailing mental condition must be controlled insanity.
Bold text added by the diarist.
Controlled insanity. That is the best description of the Conservative movement I have ever heard.
Corporatist Oligarchs are the new royalty. Free markets are the new serfdom. With Oligarchs who control 3/5ths of a nations GNP gaming Democracy, is there even a chance that Democracy can work properly? With a Corporate media that doesn't even cover the reality facing America, can America continue to survive? Most importantly, the question remains . . . . .
Is the U.S. at the Mercy of an Unstoppable Oligarchy?
Another way of saying it is, Can America survive Corporate America?
I hope so, but I do not know how.
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