Robert ReichBack to OpinionRobert Reich

Greece’s choice and ours: Democracy or finance?

Which do you trust more: democracy or financial markets?

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou decided in favor of democracy on Monday when he announced a national referendum on the draconian budget cuts Europe and the IMF are demanding from Greece in return for bailing it out.

Protesters dressed as prisoners gather during an event to protest against austerity measures outside the Greek parliament in Athens, Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2011. Photo: AP/Thanassis Stavrakis

(Or, more accurately, the cuts Europe and the IMF are demanding for bailing out big European banks that have lent Greece lots of money and stand to lose big if Greece defaults on those loans – not to mention Wall Street banks that will also suffer because of their intertwined financial connections with European banks.)

If Greek voters accept the bailout terms, unemployment will rise even further in Greece, public services will be cut more than they have already, the Greek economy will contract, and the standard of living of most Greeks will deteriorate further.


If Greek voters reject the terms and the nation defaults, it will face far higher borrowing costs in the future. This may reduce the standard of living of most Greeks, too. But it doesn’t have to. Without the austerity measures the rest of Europe and the IMF are demanding, the Greek economy has a better chance of growing and more Greeks are likely to find jobs.

Shouldn’t Greek citizens make this decision for themselves?

Of course, if Greek defaults on its loans, global investors (fearing that a default in Greece sets a dangerous precedent) may yank their money out of Italy. This would almost certainly bust several big European banks – and generate panic on Wall Street. That’s why Tim Geithner has been pressing Europe to bail out Greece.

We’ve been here before, remember? Specifically, here in the United States — at the end of 2008 and start of 2009. Wall Street had made lots of bad loans, and the question we faced then was whether to bail out the Street.

The difference is, we didn’t hold a referendum. Instead, the Bush administration told Congress the nation risked “economic Armageddon” if it didn’t immediately authorize a giant bailout of the Street – with no strings attached. Of course Congress hastily agreed. Hank Paulson, Ben Bernanke, and Tim Geithner (as head of the New York Fed) then doled out the money. And the Obama administration (with Geithner installed as Treasury Secretary) gave out more.

So instead of allowing the Street to live with the consequences of its negligence, we bailed it out – and allowed the Main Streets of America to suffer the consequences.

If Americans had been consulted about the 2008-2009 Wall Street bailout, I doubt it would have happened the way it did. At the very least, strict conditions would have been placed on the banks in return for the money. The banks would have had to eat the losses of the predatory mortgages they sold, and help homeowners reduce those mortgages. They’d be required to improve the capitalization of small banks in communities across the country. They’d be forced to accept stringent new regulations, including resurrection of Glass-Steagall.

But Americans weren’t really consulted. It was an inside job.

As a result, Wall Street has prospered but the rest of the nation hasn’t. One out of four homeowners is underwater, owing more on their homes than the homes are worth.

And with the worst economy since the Great Depression, we’re now embarking on fiscal austerity. Either Congress’s super-committee comes up with $1.2 trillion of federal budget cuts that Congress agrees to – going into effect a little over thirteen months from now – or $1.5 trillion of cuts are made across the board. Meanwhile, states and cities have been slashing public services for the past three years.

So which is it? Rule by democracy or by financial markets? Based on what’s happened in America, I’d choose the former.

Published by arrangement with RobertReich.org.

Robert Reich is Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He has served in three national administrations, most recently as secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton. He has written 11 books (including his most recent, “Supercapitalism,” which is now out in paperback).

 

Comments

  • Anonymous

    Democracy and the middle class, world wide, are under assault. By undermining the wealth of the middle class, the intention is to undermine the strength of middle classes, especially in America, to resist surrendering of American sovereignty, and American democratic rights under the U.S. Constitution. Seen as a major roadblock in the path toward the NAU (North American Union) under the terms of the SPP (Security & Prosperity Partnership) already agreed to and signed by Bush 43, no option to join is provided for U.S. Citizens.

    NAFTA was a major step in the undermining process. Passed into law without the constitutionally required 2/3 majority Senate approval vote, by Clinton, who proceeded to declare victory for NAFTA, after claiming it was an agreement, was a gross violation of the constitution. There is no definable difference between the term, agreement and/or TREATY. They are synonymous.

    NAFTA not only serves to lure American business & American jobs to foreign nations, but grants corporate power over national government in Chapter 11, the Investor-to-State provision.

    The inflation that fueled the real estate bubble was generated directly by the FEDERAL RESERVE, as the only source of power authorized to control the U.S. economy, through inflation & deflation. The current refusal to provide loans for mortgages & small business is being generated by the FED since it controls over 70% of U.S. daily banking deposit through its member banks, nation wide. The bad debt created intentionally by the FED member banks was fraudulently sold, bundled with traditionally sound mortgage backed U.S.  investments, to national & international investment and retirement fund managers, spreading the economic collapse around the world.  FED Chairman Alan Greenspan’s interference with the CFTC, (Commodities Futures Trading Commission) as he did everything in his power to block efforts  of the CFTC from regulating and requiring transparency in those markets should be recognized as a criminal. Coupled with Greenspan’s recommendation that Clinton repeal Glass-Steagall Act, the FEDERAL RESERVE  is being used to aid in the financial undermining taking, by the Elite globalists who sit as the Board of Governors on the FED.

    Money is power. As Mayer Amschel Bauer once famously stated: “Allow me to issue and control the currency of a nation and I care not who makes its laws.”

    It appears the statement now applies to the world, since the IMF is scheduled to replace the FEDERAL RESERVE as a world-wide central bank. Following the April 2009 G20 Summit, leaders issued a communique which set the ground work for the creation of a global currency to replace the dollar as the world reserve currency. The communique stated that the G20 leaders have activated the IMF’s power to create money and begin global quantitative easing. In doing so, they put a de facto world currency into play. It is outside the control of any sovereign body. (See list of communiques issued on the G 20 website for verification.)

    President Obama, in choosing Timothy Geithner, former head of the N.Y. FED as U.S. Treasury Secretary, leading to both White House and Geithner’s opposition to the most recently proposed House legislation requiring transparency and an audit of the FED led to its defeat. Because of the way the system was organized, whoever controls the N.Y. FED controls the system. Only Hank Paulson’s conflict of interest, as former head of Goldman is comparable. Having been granted an “ethics waiver” by the Bush 43 administration, not disclosed until AFTER the TARP FUNDS were approved, our government is directly responsible and involved in creating the economic collapse. The President, having proven his loyalty to protecting and preserving the wealth and power of the elite group who have engineered this debacle, has joined the ranks of all U.S. presidents since …and including Clinton, working against the best interests of the United States, by fraudulently passing legislation that lures American business and American jobs to foreign shores, and placing the former head of the BANK that is extracting the wealth of this nation, quietly and unobserved, as it destroys the very foundation of capitalism in the process.

    As the respected economist, Mr. Reich cannot be unaware of this. Supporting the re-election of President Obama is to support the ongoing destruction of the American economy. Although appearing the lesser of two evils, President Obama’s decision to extend the Bush Tax Cuts, without even consulting with the democratic caucus, is the root cause of the financial difficulties we face. All other “pseudo” conflicts in congress are based on that decision. One after the other, confrontations are played out, as a result. Based on Clinton’s history with NAFTA, trusting him to create the situaiton that is now the “Super Committee” is absurd.

    President Obama’s feigned ignorance of the SPP at the same time he dissed NAFTA during his campaign, as he promised to make necessary changes to NAFTA were followed up by the President’s pressuring for congressional approval of 3 additional trade agreements that lure our jobs and businesses to foreign countries. How disingenuous can it be to declare that American jobs are his number one priority at the same time?

    American government has declared itself above the law. Without law, chaos inevitably follows. As a lawyer and constitutional scholar, denying the U.S. Constitutional statement: No man is above the law, cannot be excused, denied or explained away by precedents, especially since the executive branch was NEVER granted the authority to decide whether to investigate or prosecute elected officials who have confessed to knowingly, willingly and intentionally violating national & international law, in writing, mockingly declaring intentions to commit the same crimes, given the opportunity to repeat them. Our government officials, are a disgrace to this nation. They must be replaced…or held accountable. Democracy, American Sovereignty, and the U.S. Constitution will not be held captive to the criminals who seek to destroy the American way of life, as we know it.

  • Anonymous

    I think it is obvious what happens when we depend on the elite to make financial decisions they protect the elite at the expense of the people.  It does not matter rather an R or a D is behind their name the elite is who they are beholden to.  Wall Street, corporations, and banks rule this country and both parties know this and they have the government eating out of their hand.  The government is joined at the hip with large private industry because that is who has the power and money to fund their campaigns. 1% of the population has about 99% of the real power in this nation.  That 1% is who the politicians are beholden to.  Thus as far as I am concerned OWS should be occupying both large industry and the government as they both are part of the 1% who have most of the wealth and make all the rules that the 99% simply have to accept.  We only think we have a strong democracy on many levels we have a plutocracy that decide the important decisions of the day.

    How long is the 99% going to accept this plutocracy?  How long is the 1% going to make all the rules?  How long until the people of this nation stand up and say this is a government of the people, by the people, and by the people not a government of the elite, wall street, banks, and corporations.  The rich don’t need government’s help the poor and middle class do the rich can take care of themselves.  Why is it then that our government continues to fatten the rich at the expense of the poor?  How low of a tax rate does the wealthy need before they stop complaining they pay too much?  I am sure many of them would not be happy until the income tax and estate tax was abolished completely.  There greed knows no limits, their disregard for the society around them is astounding, and their lust for power has no end.  This is their world we just live in it!

  • Anonymous

    I agree there is many problems and much corruption within our government but you seem to be ignoring the very big problems and corruptions within Wall Street, banks, and corporations.  Everything you speak of is the government giving into Wall Street, banks, and corporations.  See a connection there?  The fact is without Wall Street, banks, and corporations having the bully pulpit of lobby power and campaign contributions the government would not be making these decisions it makes.  The government regulates and taxes Wall Street, banks, and corporations but Wall Street, banks, and corporations are the ones that have the most say in government.  Most of the regulations after Wall Street, bank, and corporate lobbyist get done lobbying and paying off the politicians by campaign contributions are nothing more then a paper tiger, a law filled with loopholes purposely put their for them to exploit, or worse yet getting the government to make more lax the regulations.  This is like letting weapon traffickers have a big say in trafficking weapons legislation.  Said another way it is the fox guarding the hen house.  The key is to limit corporate lobbying power and campaign contributions.  We tried that before but the conservative Supreme Court struck it down as unconstitutional and suggested corporations are people.  This is such a ridiculous argument I am now going to suggest my dog is a person. 

    As far as all the Fed bashing coming from the right I think they do have some valid grievances but I think blaming the Fed for everything they don’t like about the financial system is unfair.  Many on the left like myself were also against the bail outs especially if it was a gift and not a loan and did not have strings attached.  I think the Federal Reserve could be ran better but think Ron’s Paul’s arguments on the Fed and the Gold Standard are a bunch of bologna and sound as some libertarian right wing conspiracy.  This is the same man who recently suggested FDR was responsible for the Great Depression and the New Deal prolonged the Depression this argument has no basis in fact and virtually every economist disagrees with this assessment.  I like Ron Paul on certain things and considered voting for him but now after hearing all his economic garbage I am becoming very uneasy.  I wish Bernie Sanders would run now there is a man I could get behind in a moment.  I am to disappointed with Obama but probably for different reasons he is not Progressive enough and in many ways has done the same things as Bush.  As far as Robert Reich I like him and think if we listed to him three years ago or even much earlier we would not be where we are today and would be much better off.  Instead we listened to the supply-siders and this is what we got.  I wish Robert Reich was the fed chairmen instead.

  • Anonymous

    In response, Alan, I will attempt to address your comments, point by point, in the order you voiced them. An explanation for your observation of “government giving into” and the “connection” you allude to:

    1.Ref:  Corporations (corruption) Perhaps you’re unaware of NAFTA’s Chapter eleven, the Investor-to-State provision, in which corporate investors, individually and/or collectively are granted the right and the power to sue national government for interfering with their right to profit. That provision spells out the procedures for such litigation. Specifically:

    a) the litigation is not open to the public and no public recourse is provided.
    b) the litigation is decided by an international panel.
    c) all NAFTA signatories are bound by the rulings of the panel.
    d) no monetary limits set in the litigation
    e) loss of corp. profits, past, present & future can be claimed
    f) Since NAFTA’s primary goal is international corporate expansion, litigation decided by NAFTA/WTO panels might lean toward that goal.

    Although NAFTA is specific to “trade” if government were to interfere with corporate profit by imposing anti-trust laws (breaking up too-big to-fail), if a lawsuit was threatened or pursued, with no public access and no public recourse, we’d never know. NAFTA, passed into law in 1993, without the required constitutional 2/3 senate majority approval. President Clinton, unable to generate the required votes, declared victory for NAFTA, by claiming it an agreement, instead of a treaty. However, there is no definable difference in those terms, anywhere. They are synonymous. No significant press coverage resulted.

    Obvious detrimental effects of NAFTA… the loss of our industrial base, off-shoring of American jobs, massively increased trade deficit, etc, overshadow the worst effect: CORPORATE POWER OVER GOVERNMENT. Prior to NAFTA, the only source of power that could control corporate abuse was government. As demonstrated in the Ethyl Corp. vs. Canada (2005) even the threat of such litigation can significantly affect government policy. Canada settled rather than risk a ruling, rendered by a NAFTA panel…which is the only reason that information is available.

    2. Wall St. – In the late 1990′s, Alan Greenspan, former Chairman of the FEDERAL RESERVE, at the time, did everything in his power to block the CFTC  (Commodities Futures Trading Commission) from requiring transparency and regulation of the OTC “dark markets” where most of the fraud and corruption has, and continues to take place. Brooksley Born, head of CFTC at the time, went so far as to testify before congress as to the need to address the problem. Directly following her testimony, Greenspan stated that, in his opinion, Ms. Born’s testimoney was based on an “anomaly” (something that rarely, if ever, could happen). Following that congressional hearing, Larry Summers, Robert Rubin, Arthur Levitt and Greenspan made sure Ms. Born’s credibility was severely undermined . Arthur Levitt has since expressed regret for the role he played in destroying Brooksley Born. The others went on to advise ALL future U.S. presidents. Those markets continue  with no transparency and no regulation… Greenspan is responsible for convincing Clinton to end Glass-Steagall which had protected the economic stability of this nation since the 1929 depression. A primary catalyst in that economic collapse was the ability of bank’s to “gamble” with “other people’s (or depositor’s) money. As a bank advocate, Greenspan, is responsible for opening the casino again.

    3. Banks – Perhaps you’re unaware that the banks I believe you’re referring to are major stockholders in the FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM.  The largest stockholder/owner was established in a May, 1976 report of the House Banking and Currency Committee that indicated: “The Rothschild banks hold 53% of the stock of the U.S. Federal Reserve. Alan Greenspan has publicly stated that there is no power greater than the FEDERAL RESERVE.

    4. Government – a) The legislative branch of American government, has continued to create and pass legislation that renders itself, self-governing. Accountable to nothing other than themselves, and theoretically, their constituents, who are swayed by lies and distortions of the truth, paid for by self-interest groups & coporations. b) Ref. the c) Supreme Court – Thomas Jeffereson went to his grave regretting he was unable to provide a remedy for the absolute power of the the justices to change the constitution. Jefferson, anticipating the issues that are now evident in the Citizen’s United Ruling had no choice but to rely on the system to appoint justices who have demonstrated consistently, the priority of acting in the best interests of democracy, under the constitution, without partisanship. c) The Executive Branch has assumed so much power, it’s impossible to innumerate. But the worst is that all presidents since Ford (unelected), have assumed the power to exempt  elected government officials from accountability to the law, including the supreme law of this land the U.S. Constitution. WITHOUT LAW, CHAOS INEVITABLY FOLLOWS.

    If the “FED” you refer to is the “Federal Reserve Bank/System” my questions to you are:
    a) Are you aware that the FED is a private, for-profit banking corporation that granted itself the exclusive right and power to control the U.S. economy through inflation and deflation generating profit for the shareholders/owners of the FED, with no transparency and no accountability required?
    b) Are you aware that the FED chairmen are chosen by the bank, name given to the U.S. President who “appoints” followed by “congressional confirmation” which allows the bank to be called “quasi-governmental.”?
    c) Are you aware that the FED has NEVER been audited? Many are confused by the info on the FED’s website that indicates it is audited. However the internal auditing is reported to the bank…not the U.S. government.
    d) Are you aware that the FED uses “fractional reserve lending”, which generates a 90% profit on every dollar it issues to the United States, plus compounded daily interest?
    e) Are you aware that the FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM controls over 70% of U.S. daily banking deposits through its member banks, located throughout this nation?
    f) Are you aware that all those member banks (branches) follow FED policy developed by the bank, just like any other for-profit banking corporation?
    g) Are you aware that North Dakota is the only state that has not suffered the detrimental effects of the economic collapse due to having established a state-wide community bank, that provides low-cost mortgage and business loans with the priority of statewide economic stability? North Dakota’s unemployment rate has remained steady, between 3 & 4% while the rest of the nation descends into poverty, unemployment and homelessness.
    h) Are you aware that the U.S. has operated successfully many times in its history without a central banking system? …Most recently as a result of President Andrew Jackson’s having fought against and won his battle against it?
    i) Are you aware that every world power in history has failed in large part due to central banking systems?
    j) Are you aware that the FEDERAL RESERVE ACT OF 1913 was passed into law in violation of the U.S. Constitutional provision that specifically restricts the issue and control of U.S. currency to the U.S. government, specifically to prevent the possibility of a central banking system in this country? That provision has never been addressed.

    Ref. Mr. Reich…”respected economist”… I “like” him too! Mr. Reich appears genuinely concerned about the future of the U.S. economy, but I was surpised to find that almost all “respected economists” who write opinions and furnish economic reports rendering support or criticism for different economic policies have become extremely wealthy due to the amount they are paid to furnish those “opinions.” I do not speak for Mr. Reich, nor do I know if he receives compensation for his opinions.

    Ref: Ron Paul… A staunch advocate for abolishing the FEDERAL RESERVE who has supported many congressional attempts to do so, Ron Paul’s motivation is justified based on the facts stated above. Unfortunately, his libertarian leanings that are rooted in the absolute application of the constitution, also include eliminating medicare, social security, medicaid…(socialist programs indeed), but at this time in our history, with the damage the FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM has imposed on our economy, ending those programs before we can regain our economic stability might be disastrous for a nation already suffering so deeply.

    I agree with you in your support for Bernie Sanders. If there was a chance he’d be offered as a third party candidate, I have no doubt he would be the only chance this country has to survive.

    The most egregious fraud ever perpetrated on the citizens of this nation remains the fact that the BANKS that are responsible for creating the economic collapse necessitating the TARP BAILOUT, are the same banks that own and profit from the FEDERAL RESERVE BANK. The bank from which, we the people, borrowed the funds, that were handed to the owners of the bank with no strings attached.Those owners/shareholders are receiving a 90% profit on every dollar of that loan, plus compounded daily interest. Having been granted an “ethics waiver” by the Bush 43 administration, Hank Paulson’s conflict of interest, as former CEO of Goldman Sachs, is only rivaled Timothy Geithner’s, as former head of the N.Y. FEDERAL RESERVE. Paulson’s “ethics waiver” was not disclosed until after the TARP FUNDS were approved by congress.

    Claiming that our economic issues are caused by “spending” when the bank that hides behind the myth of being “our government bank” is extracting the wealth of this nation, quietly and unobserved, will not stop without public knowledge and awareness of what the FEDERAL RESERVE is and what they are doing.

    Allowing the FED chairmen to “advise” government on economic policy, when those chairmen work for the bank and their job is to produce profit for the bank at the expense of U.S. taxpayers is pure insanity. Keeping in mind that it was Obama who chose Geithner as U.S. Treasury Secretary and that opposition by the White House and Timothy Geithner to the most recent legislation requiring transparency and an audit of the FEDERAL RESERVE led to its defeat, is proof positive that President Obama is on the side of preserving the wealth and power of the wealthiest 1%, as he  pretends otherwise. The President is more than a disappointment. He has proven to be a disingenuous fraud, cleverly using the “opposition” as a scapegoat. The saddest of all is that he remains the “lesser of all evils” available to run this country.

  • Anonymous

    Sorry for the long time to respond.  Got busy and forgot to go back to it.  Well over two weeks later I clicked on this article in my bookmarks and realized you responded.  I read everything you written and you do make some valid points but I still think like Ron Paul you are too hung up on the Federal Reserve.  No doubt the Federal Reserve and Banks work very close with each other but you fail to see without the Federal Reserve the Banks would regulate themselves.  That would spell the end for capitalism because of their excesses and democracy because of the much greater power they would wield over the people.  There is a very good reason the Federal Reserve was formed and made into what it is today to try to prevent fraud, abuse, too much inflation or deflation, systemic bank failures and depressions.  It needs more oversight, more restrictions of power especially when bailing out foreign banks, and needs to focus more on sounder economic and monetary policy but it does not need to be overthrown.  Yes NAFTA is a mess and helps the third world more then it does us in spite of what the few industries who are helped by it say otherwise.  As far as the regulators not doing their jobs and allowing bad behavior to continue yes that is a problem.  The question here is who regulates the regulators.  It is time congress and the American people begin to hold them more accountable.

  • 2BlueWaterDiamond

    Alan…in response to your 11/30 comments…
    You fail to recognize the significance of the fact that the FEDERAL RESERVE is a private, for-profit banking corporation.

    The “banks” you refer to don’t just “work closely”, etc. with the FED. Those banks, in fact, ARE THE OWNERS OF RECORD OF THE FED.

    John Maynard Keynes (Kenesian economics) wrote in his 1919 book, “The Economic Consequnces of Peace”: “Lenin is to have declared that the best way to destroy the capitalist system was to debauch the currency…By a continuing process of inflation, governments can confiscate secretly and unobserved, an important part of the wealth of their citizens…As the inflation proceeds and the real value of the currency fluctuates wildly from month to month, all permanent relations between debtors and creditors, whcih form the ultimate foundation of capitalism, become so utterly disordered as to be almost meaningless…”

    A May, 1976 report of the House Banking and Currency Committee indicated that the Rothschild banks hold 53% of the stock of the U.S. Federal Reserve. The “banks” share the rest of the stock.

    Most importantly:  Following the April 2009 G20 Summit, leaders (including President Obama) issued a communique which set the ground work for the creation of a global currency to replace the dollar as the world reserve currency. The communique stated that the G20 leaders have activated the IMF’s power to create money and begin global quantitative easing. In doing so, they put a de facto world currency into play. It is outside the control of any sovereign body.

    We have been taught that we can control government by voting, Amazingly we have been mislead. The founder of the Rothschild dynasty, Mayer Amschel Bauer told the secret of controlling the government of a nation over 200 years ago. He said: “Permit me to issue and control the money of a nation and I care not who makes its laws”. Our freedom hinges first on the nation’s banks and money system.

    The IMF (International Monetary Fund) will replace the FEDERAL RESERVE as a world-wide central bank. When the U.S. dollar is no longer the world reserve currency, a U.S. financial disaster will reach epic proportions…and it’s already in progress.

  • John Jack…

    Politicians running for PRESIDENT must know that they are going to work for ‘the people’ and not run for fame and fortune. Should create jobs and educate to rebuild the economy and young minds and not owe anyone.  Should honor our freedom and not interfere with – what gays and lesbys do in their own closets. Should leave religion in the church and not bring into politics and not encourage same sex marriage – otherwise we will distroy life on earth. Should focus on working together donkey (D) or elephant (R) to secure the future of this once great nation to rekindle the flame of our forefathers and stop fighting bickering and blaming oneanother - this job is not as easy as you may think ask any former or the current President – If you want to help this your country, submit your ideas, if its good it may be used to enhance the growth of our nation. And for God’s sake stop fighting like little boys over a girl or rats over cheese. Instead-live and work together for one positive cause and not for self-gratification and pride which leads to destruction. Respect yourself first to give respect to your fellow countrymen and leave the corruptions of politics out of your plan. Those of you who think this job is easy wait until you find out that “heavy is the head that wears the crown” - President Obama, thank you for the great job you are doing and I know you will serve your 2nd term despite the jealousy, namecalling and bickering of the feebleminded around our nation.  Forget about the past let’s move “forward ever, backward never.   May God bless you all and the USA.  Sincerely, John Jack.        

  • 2BlueWaterDiamond

    Idealistic, optimistic…patriotic Americans continue to be distracted by the propaganda deluge dispersed by news media. Whether right leaning or left leaning…all of it is intended to encourage a divided nation.

    President Obama will be re-elected because he has demonstrated his loyalty to preserving the wealth and power of the elite globalists that run this country. His appointment of Timothy Geithner, former head of the N.Y. Federal Reserve as U.S. treasury secretary sealed the deal. The president’s and Geithner’s opposition to house legislation requiring transparency and accountability of the Federal Reserve System that lead to its defeat provides the secrecy under which they continue to extract the wealth of this nation .

    After promising to end the Patriot Act, the greatest assault on civil rights in American histroy, the president proceeded to strengthen and extend it prior to the time he faced any of the absurdity of republican opposition, that exists now. Claiming his priority is creating American jobs while he continues to negotiate and pressure for congressional approval of additional trade agreements that lure American business and American jobs to foreign nations is his greatest contradiction.

    Failing to hold elected government officials accountable to the law for violating national and international law as his benevolent intention “not to look back” was never within his powers as commander-in-chief, nor was that authority ever granted to a U.S. president. The greatest threat to democracy is the failure to hold government officials accountable to the law. As a constitutional lawyer, each of these issues demonstrates that President Obama is no less a hypocrite than the rest of our government who serve corporate masters at the expense of the people of this nation.

    The republican opposition provides an ongoing scapegoat as their excuse for government failure to work in the best interest of this country. As the campaign rhetoric he is so skilled at, now resurfaces, a desperate, weakened middle class hears the ingenuous promises once again…even though we have witnessed the greatest of them broken before. We have no choice but to cling to the hope of promise. The republican circus and the clown that emerges as a candidate will continue to fill the air waves, while a sputtering American economy is left to falter. The media turns all attention to an election that has already been decided. The terrorists that threaten our freedom the most, now constitute the majority of all three branches of our government. Selling their souls to the highest bidder, enriching themselves at the expense of our once beautiful, democratic nation, they care not for what this country has done for them…