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Obama Shows Why Wall Street Has Two Parties And We Have None


#1

Obama Shows Why Wall Street Has Two Parties And We Have None

Les Leopold

Just as Donald Trump mortgages the White House to Goldman Sachs, Barack Obama does a Hillary: He agrees to take $400,000 from Wall Street to give one speech. Obama will make as much money in one hour as the average American makes in about five years.

The excuse can’t be lack of money. He and Michelle are about to receive $60 million in book advances on top of the several million already in the bank plus the $200,000 pension as an ex-president.

So why take the Wall Street cash?


#2

Absolutely. Well put, Les.

But what if Bernie, Nina, Tulsi, et al, run as Independents, instead of a Ross Perot type? If the campaign is anything like Bernie's in 2016, the third party could actually win.

Of course, we still have those damned machines. Even now, after TPTB admit they can be hacked! Nobody is focusing on the machines. I digress.


#3

Had Obama succeeded with TPP, TTIP or TISA he would be getting way north of $400k per speech.

The Clintons, Obamas and other corporatecrats DO understand and have always understood "that Wall Street's riches come from strip mining the rest of us". Why else would they quote and compare themselves to Saint Ron, more than any other previous POTUS, while pretending that pre-DLC Democrats from Carter and Mondale, back to Van Buren never existed ?

Saint Ron was the first symptom of the cancer that has now evolved to stage four terminal Trumpanoma and progressives need to have zero tolerance for any politician from any party lauding Ron or the band of pirates he put in charge while he slept through his 8 years as POTUS.


#4

The democrat leadership is so out of touch with we the people and have not learned a damn thing from their losses since 2010, or from Dubya or from the Clinton years of obstruction and witch hunting of the republican party.

Leave this party behind, they only throw we the people crumbs.


#5

While the majority of Americans don't have $500 in savings and live paycheck to paycheck,
Obama clearly deserves his money from Wall Street and millions in book deals.
After all,Obama orchestrated the greatest transfer of wealth in history to the 1%.
(http://thefreethoughtproject.com/barack-obama-successfully-rich-richer/)


#6

As long as politicians from the president on down look to cash in after their terms of office, I would like to declare a moratorium on the phrase " Selfless Public Service". I also never want to hear " He (or She) could have made far more in the private sector but wanted to serve the people". Without their "serving the public" there would be no millions made with books, speeches, or lobbying. Anyone here getting any fat speaking fees?


#7

With the Democrats trying desperately to dress themselves up as progressives in time for 2018, Obama pulls this $400K stunt.

Actually, progressives should be grateful. That speech should be all it takes to throw talk of reforming the Democratic party in the dumpster where it belongs. That $400K speech IS the Democratic party.


#8

Personally, I doubt that Obama is accepting that money to make a point to Bernie's side of the party.
I think he's accepting it simply because he is now caught up in the Greed disease.


#9

While overall a good point in this article (which has been raised from others too), there are two minor things that bug me.

  • according to this author the average american makes 80k/year? the stats say that 50% of the people live with a per capita less than 25k and the next 25% with a per capita less than 50k. So, it would be more correct to say that it will take the ordinary american 10 years to make the money O is making in 1hr, but even that comparison is very pale as for the ordinary american the money coming in, goes out, it is not spare income like in O's case

  • don't understand why there is an argument about 'does he need or does he not need the money' - that is very irrelevant and it implies that it is ok to betray public principles for personal interest


#10

I believe Mr. Leopold's analysis is correct and is exemplified by O-man's very public endorsement of Macron.

George Carlin once quipped: "Your choices are either paper or plastic." In those parts of the planet where "elections" are still practiced the choice is now: "Do you prefer a SUIT or a UNIFORM?"

Neoliberalism to the rescue.


#11

Politician's choices:

  1. Do the right thing for the people and reject the WS bribes needed for your election.

  2. Take the WS bribes, slap them on the hand and use great oratory to say what a free and democratic society this is as he sells out the country to banks and corporations.


#12

Great article.

There is an understated thesis in this piece that is voters respond to IMAGE and EGO.

Think about this in terms of your (or most peoples') egos. Would it feel worse to be called greedy/immoral, or to be called immature/naïve?

I think Hillary's campaign was banking (no pun intended) on the belief that what matters to voters is that the candidate is tough, crafty, and above all, knows how the game is played. It might not go so far as to be advantageous to be called "Machiavellian," since that would make voters think they are the targets (though we are).

She showed this by partnering with Wall-Street bankers. Wall street IS the game, in a large measure. SECRET speeches show she knows you don't show your cards; as my brother said, "Of COURSE she said there's one position you have in public and another you have in private. That's how it works!" The common voter is supposed to think, "Wow, secret talks with top game-players? She must be getting things done."

How often have you felt, (or believed you were expected to feel) awe for these higher-ups, their esoteric meetings, rules-of-order, executive committees, etc. Weren't you impressed? Or at least cowed?

Then Bernie comes along and says what should be obvious--but it isn't nuanced. And because of all this political image-grooming, you know you are expected to think, "It can't be that way. That's too simple. Why is he talking to us little people about what's right and wrong with the financial elite? Why doesn't he broker deals and meet with the Titans of Industry to shape the way things are?

We've been trained, people. We've been trained to think that if something makes sense to us, who are immature, it must be too simple. We're so naïve (as are the few politicians who are on our side) that we're relegated to sitting back and admiring the craft, the deal, the wonk.

It may be more clear with war. Pacifism is simple-minded and idealistic. Idealists are immature and naïve. Realists know there's a lot of evil out there, but they also know the best way to deal with it is to work with it, not against it. Realists know you have to break some eggs, kill some civilians, bomb some hospitals. Give away a few trillion dollars to white-collar felons.


#13

Maybe since the federal government only works for the 1%, they should be the only ones who have to pay taxes. Or as the old phrase went, "No taxation without [authentic] representation."


#14

OhBummer and Faux Drama Obama. The guy is actually going to be in movies and have his own network show. Supposedly, first he'll be reprising Sidney Poitier's roles in Megabucks and The Preachers. Then, he'll star in To Sir Richard Branson With Love. And, end with Shillies of The Field.
Then, he'll host the network show, tentatively titled, Who Not To Trust.
The man was a major disappointment to the center-left coalition and to the rank-and-file Democratic Party. His list of missed opportunities is just as long as his " reach across the aisle ", arms.
Domestic Policy wonks here at CD can draw up and post the laundry list of his " incrementalist " flip flops. " A rising tide lifts all boats "; well, the author here shows fairly accurately that Obama's wave, really didn't. And, his Foreign Policy doesn't match up to the rhetoric very often, either.
Personally likeable, a good family man and a good role model; sure, I'll give him that. However, when you're administration is more often compared to a Herbert Hoover Heavy than to FDR Light, you're not a Democrat, really.
The stars were aligned, mostly the American people were ready, the crisis was real and we had a failure to launch. The young will suffer the most. of course. Because, they're not Republicans. And, of course, many of the rest of us are no longer very trusting of the Democratic Party. Once burnt, twice shy, as the saying goes.


#15

Where is Bernie Sheepdog (still on the "unity" tour?)....saying anything about this?

Income inequality is correct: it will not take me 5 years to make $400,000...it will take me
about 10 years..
and I work many times overtime: not paid...bosses know it, just so they don't write me up
(3 write ups in a year - they can dismiss you = advised I have NO protection).
Anyway, they recently agreed to pay me overtime....after 2 weeks of that ...
they decided : no, I don't have to do a certain task, after all.
and was told they don't expect me to have to work overtime at all anymore.
meanwhile my co=workers told me it is because management wants to save the money
for the bonuses they give themselves at the end of every year...
start gathering pebbles and stones, and eggs, I think...I think it is going down that road...


#16

He ( Bernie ) said it was unfortunate and Warren said some things, too. Sorry about your situation. FYI- I'd eat the eggs. I think that's a felony, especially if they're hard boiled.


#17

And what is evil corporate Obama doing with the money? Oh, that's right, giving it to One Summer Chicago, the city's summer work program. The administrators probably hope he realizes he's selling out and doesn't give the speech. They wouldn't want to put that tainted money to good use, after all.


#18

They'll spend it wisely, I'm sure. Buy the two books, possibly, and hand them out to be read and critiqued by the youngsters. Book reports and fact checking are very useful skills, as well.


#19

Yes, the Obama's will give $2 million (of the $60 million from his book contract) to a Chicago Summer Jobs program. That will, no doubt, help some youth get low level jobs in undemocratically managed non-profit or private for-profit institutions.

Obama could do a lot more for the community if he were to identify the inherent plutocratic and poverty inducing nature of the status quo private sector economics and come out in full support local democratically run worker/community owned cooperatives in which the wage ratio (highest to lowest paid) runs from 3:1 to 5:1 rather than 600:1 ( http://www.mondragon-corporation.com/eng/co-operative-experience/our-principles/ ). Many cooperatives have also extended the 7 principles ( https://www.slvrec.com/content/7-cooperative-principles ) to be more in line with those of Mondragon ( http://www.mondragon-corporation.com/eng/co-operative-experience/our-principles/ ).

So far, both President and Michelle Obama have refused to promote cooperatives as a more economically, environmentally, and socially just and sustainable alternative to status quo corporate and private sector businesses.


#20

Corporations have all the political power, average voters have virtually none.

It doesn't matter which party is in power, corporations will call the shots.

Use your vote wisely: be a part of a bloc that's willing to say 'hell no' and don't budge. Example: If a D-Party candidate won't support single-payer, stay home or vote third party.