Breaking Up the Big Banks is Not a Solution

The Real News • TheRealNews @ • January 26, 2013

Leo Panitch: Global capitalism needs massive banks, but big private banks have the power to prevent regulation and threaten more crisis; the solution is not breaking them up but making them public.


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The Cook Plan – Richard C. Cook on Economics 101

CorbettReport • • October 13, 2009

A veteran economic analyst and former Project Manager at the U.S. Treasury, Richard C. Cook joins us to discuss his “Cook Plan” to resuscitate the economy. We also discuss monetary reform and his new book We Hold These Truths: The Hope of Monetary Reform.


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Richard C. Cook: Credit As a Public Utility –The Solution to the Economic Crisis

Richard C. Cook • • April 21, 2011

First part of six:

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Hundreds Hold Demonstrations in Athens to Say NO to Privatization of State Banks • December 18, 2012

Employees of the Hellenic Post Bank (HPB) staged a walkout outside the Finance Ministry on Monday.

The new Greek coalition government initially announced plans to sell off national banks, such as HPB, in early September.

HPB is a state-controlled lender and currently has over 2,000 employees.

The protesters are united in their opposition to the government’s plan to privatize state banks and have urged Finance Minister Yannis Stournara to change his decision on the sale.

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Ellen Brown: The Trillion-dollar Coin: Joke or Game Changer?

Ellen Brown • • January 15, 2013

…It’s all good fun — or is it? Most commentators have missed the real significance of the trillion-dollar coin. It is not just about political gamesmanship. For centuries, a secret battle has raged over who should create the nation’s money supply — governments or banks. Today, all that is left of the U.S. Treasury’s money-creating power is the ability to mint coins. If we the people want to reclaim that power so that we can pay our obligations when due, the Treasury will need to mint more than nickels and dimes. It will need to create some coins with very large numbers on them.

To bail out the banks, the Federal Reserve, as head of the private banking system, issued over $2 trillion as “quantitative easing,” simply by creating the money on a computer screen. Congress, the White House, and the Treasury all rolled over and acquiesced. When it was proposed that the government bail itself out of its budget woes by minting a $1 trillion coin, the Federal Reserve said it would not accept the Treasury’s legal tender. And the White House again acquiesced, evidently embarrassed to have entertained this “ludicrous” alternative.

Somehow we have come to accept that it is less silly for the central bank to create money out of thin air and lend it at near zero interest to private commercial banks, to be re-lent to the public and the government at market interest rates, than for the government to simply create the money itself, debt- and interest-free.

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From TIME Magazine! Are State-Owned Banks the Antidote to the Too-Big-To-Fail Epidemic?

Christopher Matthews • • January 15, 2013

The American Great Plains are known for their expansive farm lands, endless horizons, and — in recent history — staunchly conservative politics. So it may come as a surprise that only state-owned bank in the U.S. (an institution more widely associated with communist China than the Republican Party) can be found in ruby-red, rural North Dakota.

That’s right, The Bank of North Dakota (BND) — the largest bank in the state by deposits — was founded by legislative mandate in 1919, and has been a mainstay of the North Dakotan economy since that time, mostly through partnering with community banks to provide loans for local businesses. And advocates of public banking are holding up the BND as an example of what government-owned banks can do for an economy.

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EU Debt Write Off: Cancelling Debt when a Country is Both Debtor and Creditor

Anthony J. Evans and Terrence Tse • • August 24, 2012

This page presents the results of a simulation conducted by students at ESCP Europe Business School. The aim was to uncover the amount of interlinked debt between Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Spain, Britain, France, and Germany; and then see what would happen if they attempted to cross cancel obligations.

The results were astounding:

  • The countries can reduce their total debt by 64% through cross cancellation of interlinked debt, taking total debt from 40.47% of GDP to 14.58%
  • Six countries – Ireland, Italy, Spain, Britain, France and Germany – can write off more than 50% of their outstanding debt Three countries
  • Ireland, Italy, and Germany – can reduce their obligations such that they owe more than €1bn to only 2 other countries
  • Ireland can reduce its debt from almost 130% of GDP to under 20% of GDP
  • France can virtually eliminate its debt – reducing it to just 0.06% of GDP

For more information download the full report: The Great EU Debt Write Off (.pdf).

The idea is very simple – if Portugal owes Ireland €0.34bn of short term debt, and Ireland owes Portugal €0.17bn, we can write off Ireland’s obligations and leave Portugal with a reduced debt of €0.17bn. If you are both a debtor and a creditor you do not need money to settle claims. Rather than require additional funds to deal with choking debt, why not write it off?

Read the entire article here.
Get the report (.pdf) here.

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Public Banks: helping workers by helping people

Mike Krauss • • January 11, 2013

In the decades after World War II, the American people built up the greatest and most broadly shared prosperity the world had ever seen. But for about the past forty years, the vast wealth of America has been steadily concentrated among a relative handful of our citizens.

This period of declining prosperity for the 99 percent has corresponded exactly with the decline of American unions. It does not take a rocket scientist to understand that strong unions are vital to a broadly prosperous and democratic America.

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Latvian Financial Crisis involving the EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development), Parex Bank, and Ernst & Young

Latviabrd @ • June 26, 2012

Latvian Crisis involving the EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development), Parex Bank, and Ernst & Young.

The link to the video is here.

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