As we meet for this 13th annual Wall Street summit, we are stand halfway between paradise and poverty.
Wall Street, heavily subsidized, bailed out, said to be
too big to fail, living outside of civil and consumer protection laws. Wall Street is 70 blocks downtown from here. Title
VI, noticed by not applied by banks has left Harlem, 70 blocks uptown from here in poverty.
What a contrast. Its Midday here, morning on Wall Street and
Midnight in Harlem. Across America there are many Harlems and so few walls streets.
It is apparent rising tides do NOT lift all boats. Most boats are taking on water and the seas are rough. So very rough for so many.
We see record levels of unemployment, community bank and business collapses. Tax bases are eroding in states, cities and around the nation. We need a stimulus part II, bottom up.
The President is right, to demand that bailout funds be paid back. But it
should not go to debt reduction; it should go to unemployment reduction. We must rebuild so that we can repay. It must be we again and not us and them.
Home Foreclosure reduction. Poverty reduction. Student loan debt reduction.
The zones of pain need prioritization and resources.
The unemployment disparity; the access to capital disparity point to the
need for vigorous enforcement of civil rights law.
The banks have been resuscitated and re-fortified. Neither their structure
Nor, the way they do business have been substantially challenged. Painfully little has changed.
It is painful for us and little change for them. The
removal of The Glass-Steagul Act conflict of interest protections after 75 years, was a huge mistake. Concentration of banking power has run amok. Our banks are not funding a future we can believe in and share.
Finance has run wild without accountability.
Without structural reform, stringent regulation and oversight, they’ve
abused their power:
1. to make historical record profits.
2. To disallow judges to modify mortgages in bankruptcy court.
3. To weaken and undermine congressional oversight.
4. To circumvent Title VI and civil rights and fair
Disparities need Department of Justice intervention.
One of the blatant examples of the gap between bankers’ privilege and homeowners and workers’
reality is this:
“Less than 1% of all eligible home mortgages have been permanently
Upon reflection, the affect of stimulus I – a basically jobless recovery – a
stimulus that left the wealthy reveling, and the poor and workers reeling –
we need a New New Deal. It is high time again for a bottom/up approach.
We need to revisit the infrastructure of regulations; the discipline of
economic growth. The effective use of the SEC, FDIC and other regulatory
We need direct job intervention.
A moratorium on home foreclosures.
The hemorrhaging of our communities requires jobs now and justice now.
This requires a review of our imbalanced trade policy and devastating impact of foreclosed homes and churches, massive student loan debt, credit card scams and rising health care costs.
Rainbow PUSH – Bankers Justice.com – we will attend the
Shareholder meetings of the top five banks in 2010.
If the banks won’t come to us, we will come to them. It can stay midnight for us and morning for them!
We will meet with the Secretary of Treasury and President to discuss the
impact of growing poverty.
We want hearings to address the poverty zones, often victims of unenforced
laws, redlining and low tax base.
We will engage in mass negotiations to take people to the banks in large
groups to seek home loan modifications.
The disparity gap needs investment and legal protection – not more dialogue.
The emergency room of poverty needs care and priority, not conversation.
On the athletic field there is no additional conversation needed between the
races; just even the playing field and play by one set of rules.
The unemployed and labor must prepare for a major jobs march and foreclosure
As we approach Dr. King’s birthday, strangely we’ve come full circle.
In his day, he cried out against concentrated wealth on Wall Street, and
expanding war in Vietnam, and the growth of poverty.
We’ve come full circle. The concentration of wealth on wall streets,
expanding war fronts in Iraq and Afghanistan and Pakistan, record levels of
unemployment and depression for many more.