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An activist group has declared: We’re sick and tired of being stomped on by the Powers That Be in Washington, and by gollies, we’re not going to take it anymore!
Hooray! It’s about time for regular folks ro rebel and make big-shot Congress critters of both parties listen to us. But – uh-oh – wait a minute, these mad-as-hellers aren’t wielding pitchforks and torches, but big bags of cash. Holy Thom Paine – they’re bankers!
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Very few Americans on this side of the ATM machine think that the biggest problem in Washington is that the moneychangers don’t have enough clout. But, incredibly, here they come with a SuperPAC intended to force lawmakers to bow even deeper to their needs. “Congress isn’t afraid of bankers,” declared one of the honchos who organized Friends of Traditional Banking SuperPAC. “They don’t think we’ll do anything to kick them out of office,” he said, but that’s exactly the plan.
In a dramatic escalation of Big Money’s assault on America’s democracy, FTB’s funders are not out to support candidates, but “to defeat our enemies.” A Utah banker who chairs the new political entity explains that an incumbent who sides with the people against bankers is not intimidated when the banking lobby puts a mere $10,000 in an opponent’s campaign. “But if you say the bankers are going to put… $1 million into your opponent’s campaign, that starts to draw some attention.” He calls this a “surgical” approach to carving out political power. Yeah – like doing surgery with a chainsaw!
Thank You, Supreme Court, for making this crass money play possible with your plutocratic Citizens United decision. Now that bankers are going to intimidate officeholders by threatening to put unlimited campaign cash against them, we can expect Big Oil, Big Pharma, Big Banks, and all the other Bigs to join the fun of big dollar negative campaigning.
“New Super-PAC Threatens to Destroy Candidates Who Side With the People Over Wall Street,” www.alternet.org, April 6, 2012.
“Bankers Form SuperPAC for ‘Surgical’ Strike at Industry’s Enemies,” www.americanbanker.com, April 4, 2012.