The real solution to breaking the power of finance is to rebalance the recession-wracked economy. Rather than gambling on the dubious promise of more Americans gaining access to the casino, it’s time to rewrite the rules to ensure that the house doesn’t always win, writes Alexis Goldstein, senior policy analyst at AFR.
If he’s confirmed to run the SEC, there will be a lot that needs fixing, says Marcus Stanley, who worked with Gensler as a Senate staffer after the financial crisis. Stanley is now the policy director of Americans for Financial Reform. “It’s an absolutely critical regulator,” says Stanley, about the SEC. But, he says, “the SEC as an organization needs some change.” He says perhaps more than any other regulator, the SEC “continued with its pre-2008 record of deregulation, even after the financial crisis.”
“There’s an emphasis on working people, racial justice and inequality, and that’s a good place to start,” said Lisa Donner, executive director of Americans for Financial Reform, an advocacy group that met with Ms. Yellen this month. “But reversing things that the current Treasury Department has done is not enough.”
“The conflict of interest is just so completely glaring,” said Marcus Stanley, the policy director of Americans for Financial Reform, a nonpartisan Wall Street watchdog. “Almost all of ICE’s important activities are regulated in very fine detail by the C.F.T.C.”
Next month, Joe Biden is going confront not only a terrible pandemic but also a pressing economic challenge. And this challenge is unfolding beyond Washington as the sum of thousands of smaller economic challenges being felt in statehouses, county seats, and city halls all across the country. Fortunately, there are tools at hand that President Biden can use. But he’ll have to be bold.
In The News: New Trump admin rules make it easier for lenders to charge small businesses super-high interest rates (NBC News)
“It’s been hard for small businesses to get the money they need to survive,” said Linda Jun, senior policy counsel at Americans for Financial Reform, a nonprofit advocacy group, “and now we have the bank regulators, instead of trying to work with their institutions on that, saying, ‘We’re going to throw some more sharks your way.'”
Looser monetary policy is a dangerous combination paired with the aggressive weakening of financial regulation by Jerome Powell’s Fed
“The C.F.P.B. should make sure companies are complying with all emergency protections on the books, and maximizing assistance to consumers to prevent garnishments, foreclosures and repossessions,” said Linda Jun, senior policy counsel at Americans for Financial Reform.
In The News: Rashida Tlaib and AOC have a proposal for a fairer, greener financial system — public banking (Vox)
“It’s basically a way to finance state and local investment that doesn’t go through Wall Street and doesn’t leave the community and turn into a windfall for shareholders,” said Porter McConnell, the campaign director of advocacy group Take On Wall Street. “This is more about community development.”
“Even in a government full of people without the integrity, will or courage to do the right thing, most of the agencies stand down — or at least pretend to — when ordered by the courts. But not the Department of Education under Secretary Betsy DeVos, who seems to have been only further animated by her losses in court over her efforts to deny the rightful debt cancellations owed to people who attended predatory, for-profit colleges, borrowers who are disproportionately women and people of color, and often now working in front-line jobs.”