Citigroup. We just can’t let them fail, they tell us. Citi is too big to fail.
Who am I? I’m nobody, but this really angers me. A company that actually makes something, with working-class jobs, have to go begging to rich oil countries for a handout, but Citi, we have to take care of Citi.
Citi is way up there on Catherine Austin Fitts’ list of the “tapeworm banks.” Two and a half years ago, listened to her tapes outline just how destructive these 20 banks were to our actual communities, local businesses, and prosperity, and how they were destined to fail. She urged her readers to disconnect from them, in favor of well-managed local banks. Fitts should know. She worked for a large investment bank, and later under two Presidents in HUD (Housing and Urban Development, an agency, she said, that was run as a “criminal enterprise.”) Once a “cuff-link Republican,” someone providing huge sums of personal funds to the party, she tried to stop the corruption, and instead the corruption stopped her–for a while. Anyone can be indicted for anything and you either fight it legally or do time. She fought it, and eventually was vindicated, but not before she spent it all.
You learn something working in the Beltway, and Catherine learned the lesson late: You can say anything you want, but don’t touch the wallet. Republicans fight Democrats, and each have their “constituents,” but both know enough not to touch the wallet. There is only one wallet, it is very very large, and if you try to touch the wallet, you will be cast out, naked and hungry.
Which tentacles are attached to the wallet, you can tell by watching what happened to Citi. Exactly which essential services does Citi provide? Who will be impacted if Citi fails and the pieces are scattered and bought by scavengers? This is not yours to know. Exactly which elected officials got together to vote on allowing Citi to eat up taxpayers money? Shhh, stop swearing. What is that unspecified amount we’ll be paying? Stop asking questions, we’ll tell you when you need to know.
But all this “conspiracy” talk isn’t really my point. My point is that if there IS no conspiracy, why not? Why hasn’t any organized group started large angry protests about bailing out Citi? No Pity for the Citi! Of all the trillions and trillions of our dollars that are getting spread around to protect “the wallet,” I’m very angry that so much is going to Citi, and I don’t think I’m the only one. But here’s the rub:
Huge corporate conglomerates are hard to protest, and harder to hurt in any meaningful way. Only Citi– after collecting trillions in profits–could harm itself, as its done. The banquet hall is closed, the guests have gone home, the food and liquor is gone and the only guys still standing are the clean-up crew, and it was quite a party. The only thing unpaid was the tab, and now we are told that we’ll “punish” the company by charging them for ten percent of the tab, and picking up the rest of the bill.
But it is all too abstract. Try and express the anger where it counts, and you’ll find yourself urinating into a huge fan. I’m going to stay angry right now, and I’ll see how any of you feel about it.