Which Bank Is the Worst for America?

October 21, 2011 | Truthout |
All together, the finance sector is the top spender on lobbying between the years of 1998 and 2011, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, having poured $4,631,844,938 into lobbyists’ pockets. $230,200,953 of that came directly from the five banks surveyed here.
 
And what did they get for all that money? Nomi Prins, a former managing director at Goldman Sachs and author of the new book Black Tuesday, explained to AlterNet:
 
“The Dodd-Frank Bill contains a slew of minor, cosmetic adjustments to the status quo manner in which the largest banks operate, and even they are being battled against by the financial industry lobbyists. The bottom line is that this bill does not fundamentally alter the structure of Wall Street - it does not separate banks cleanly, or in any other way remotely reminiscent of the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933, into commercial banks that deal with the basics of deposit and lending operations vs. investment banks that create dangerous and complex securities and leverage them into all manner of speculative activity.
 
She continued, “Even though the bill calls for a consumer financial protection agency, it should be noted that such a department existed already within the Fed during the build-up to this crisis, that by virtue of political weakening and position within the Fed and political hierarchy was rendered ineffective in practice. The bill does not end the conflicts of interest and the revolving doors between the regulatory bodies and other key positions in Washington vs. those coming from, or going to, Wall Street.”