Commentary: Time to break the handcuffs in Washington

Kevin Garrity, Editor in Chief
Kevin Garrity, Editor in Chief

Hey Washington, now is your time. No longer do you have to be handcuffed by the players on Wall Street and their big bonuses, high-risk lending and investing or deceptive packages sold to millions of people.

Signs point to the recession bottoming out and thus no longer do you have to cater to this private sector in order to keep the economy from completely crashing.

All of the evidence is in. There is coast to coast uproar over unscrupulous practices by the CEOs of the infamous 13 banks, an economy that seems to be on the mends, and what should be a consensus among your colleagues that reforms are essential.

No longer do you Congressmen and Congresswomen have to subscribe to the notion of too big to fail.

The 2008 crisis demonstrated what happens when that much concentrated power is convoluted into a system that only a select view can understand and thus does not require honesty about their practices according to ex-chair of the Federal Reserve. Their corruptness has been exposed and soon some will have to even testify in court.

For clear reasons, most of which escape me at the moment, you who occupy Washington have waited for nearly two years to implement reforms on the financial system leaving the nation no better prepared than when the crash hit in 2008, but if time is what was needed, then by all means, take all the necessary time you perceive to need.

But of course, it is understood in the current political spectrum that the time frame you, policymakers, adhere to is not too soon after being elected as to not be seen as rash with newfound power, while not too long as to threaten acting boldly and getting drilled in the mid-term elections.

That is why now is perfect timing within the political clock you so acceptingly oblige. If strong, hard-line reforms are acted now, most voters won’t even remember in November. That is until those corporations you want to reign in begin spending money like people as law permits granted by the Supreme Court.

Democrats, Republicans and independents, there are not going to be many more issues, if any, that public opinion is this rallied together.

Even the folks who still demand to see Obama’s birth certificate after they have seen it countless times, who still chant drill, baby, drill when the whole gulf coast is blanketed in a sea of black, and those who still haven’t shown up to Arizona to protest the new immigration bill even though they rally against big government, those people even want reform.

Break up the big banks, take the taxpayers off the hook when they fail and provide some oversight so countless families don’t get screwed because they did not read the 35th page of a document that is written in five-point font.

But these demands are a bit shortsighted.

I forgot this is the American political system where multiple lobbyists outnumber politicians.

And correct me; most of the people with power get bank bags of money when they are up for re-election, because campaign finance reform continually impedes a true democracy.

The previous words were assuming that the policymakers had the power the whole time, as given to them by the voters, when clearly their power rests within the political realm, provided to them by a few wealthy interests.

Kevin Garrity, a senior journalism major, is editor in chief of the Campus Times. He can be reached by e-mail at kevin.garrity@laverne.edu.

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