The following is a repost I posted in 2009.
(Links have not been verified and may have expired or no longer exist.)
NERVOUS THAT ITS BACKROOM money dealings may soon come under public scrutiny, the Federal Reserve is reportedly bringing in the big guns in an effort to quash Rep. Ron Paul’s landmark “Audit the Fed” bill (H.R. 1207), which has garnered 208 cosponsors as this issue goes to press—nearly half the members of the House of Representatives.
A national news wire service reported in early June that Linda Robertson, who currently heads up public relations for Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, has been brought in by the United States’ private central bank to polish its image.
Previously, Ms. Robertson served in top spots in both Republican and Democrat Treasury Departments. She also had a brief stint at the infamous energy company Enron, the Houston-based corporation that through fraud and deception, managed to fleece investors of billions of dollars.
Most notably, Ms. Robertson worked in the Treasury Department while Robert Rubin was secretary during the time in which the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 was rolled back. Rubin’s Treasury worked with Congress to formulate legislation, which allowed banks to form massive financial institutions by merging with investment firms and insurance companies.
These same megabanks, which formed as a result of the new rules, have now cost U.S. taxpayers trillions of dollars in bailout money.
Scribblers like Friedman and von Hayek were paid by finance oligarchs to wage a relentless war against that heritage of the Franklin D. Roosevelt New Deal, the set of policies which allowed humanity to survive the Great Depression of the 1930s. The current crisis would not have been possible in the present form if the institutional safeguards enacted during the New Deal had been left in place, as they should have been. These safeguards represent permanent features of civilization, and they need to be restored.
The best example is the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act under the Clinton administration in 1999. The Glass-Steagall Act was a classic piece of New Deal legislation which established that being a commercial bank and being a stockbroker are mutually exclusive activities that could not be legally combined in the same company.
Commercial banking was one thing, and stock brokerage was something completely separate. Naturally, the greedy financiers and their spokesmen clamored for the repeal of Glass-Steagall, and they finally got their wish. Now less than 10 years later all of the Wall Street banks, seemingly without notable exceptions, are bankrupt and insolvent institutions that cannot not survive without a massive infusion of taxpayer money. We need to restore Glass- Steagal, which will mean among other things that Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley will not be eligible to become bank holding companies after all.
Act, which effectively repealed the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933. No, Clinton didn’t have anything to do with the current financial crisis.