Today, the debate presaged in "Democrats Losing PR Wars on Banks, Too" that pointed out the far graver risk big banks posed to the rest of us as participants in the economy than as taxpayers (i.e., trillions vs billions) exploded into the mainstream media.
Feckless Democratic strategists were allowing Republicans to appear at once as the champion of taxpayers, purporting to oppose financial reform because it contained what appeared to be a bailout fund, and simultaneously in their traditional role as the handmaidens of Wall Street by opposing any major change to the financial system that would have brought the country to economic ruin had it not been saved by the government.
Get this: Republicans met Wall Street bankers, supposedly telling those crony capitalists that they would oppose financial reform on the fraudulent claim it contained a bailout fund, and Wall Street -- ready for this one -- lavished them with campaign contributions because they really did not want to be bailed out the next time they failed! What honor! What self-sacrifice! What patriotism! What crap!
Before, only Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck had openly stated that they wanted the economy to tank further, sacrificing the American people for the sake of damaging President Obama.
Today, Republican Congressional leadership (McConnell and Boehner) confirmed that they oppose financial reform and they oppose breaking up the big banks. They claim they would just let big banks fail.
That, my friends, is a Republican Declaration of War against the American people, against you and me.
Nineteen months ago, the Lehman Brothers collapse demonstrated with devastating clarity the impact of a big bank failure not just on its own shareholders, employees and creditors, but also on the American economy.
Trillions of dollars were lost. Not just by the banks. By you and me. People who had their entire net worth in their homes -- wiped out. People with retirement accounts to supplement social security -- wiped out. People who had saved to send their children to college -- wiped out.
Nor was this just an economic calamity. Younger peoples' careers -- on indefinite hold as jobs were wiped out and needed experience could not be obtained. Older workers' jobs -- wiped out in a flash flood, with pride of work and paychecks going down the drain, never to return.
Government deficits ballooned (and, without the bailout, would have been worse with a much lower tax revenue base). The country's strength to do what needs to be done to make the world safer and better was sapped.
Republican Congressional leadership declared today, with definitive clarity, that this is the future they will allow by opposing the big bank breakup, and facilitate by opposing meaningful reforms.
And, the feckless Democratic strategists and politicians, what are they doing? They are at it again, arguing over whether their financial reform bill has a bailout fund in it or not.
What is the best result that argument can achieve? That the public becomes convinced there is no bailout fund. BFD.
That is like arguing whether firefighters are combating a brushfire or a barn-fire, instead of pointing to the real conflagration.
Republicans are at war, against you and me.
If the Tea Partiers were true to their claimed heritage, they would realize that the "Divine Right" claimed by kings in the 18th Century, and against which their ancestors revolted, has been replaced by the "Divine Right" theory of banks.
And, today's Benedict Arnold is the Republican Party.
Go to www.breakupthebigbanks.com, and join the fight.