|laughing all the way to the, er, bank. With our money|
You have to wonder given the massive bailout and rescue of capitalism and the bankers how any thinking person, especially a working class person, can make the argument that the reason for increasing costs and the need for tightening our belts is workers wages, benefits pensions or any other associated costs.
There are some really backward working class folks and by that I mean with a very limited class-consciousness, even to the point of arguing positions that are against their own self interest. I can only assume that the reason for such stupidity is that they believe they are not much longer for their present lot and will soon be in the world of the hedge fund managers and other coupon clippers. The American Dream fulfilled.
We have pointed out time and again on this blog, the massive amounts of cash in society and that there is no need for this austerity agenda other than the 1% have a lot of money and want more of it, including the funds needed to wage their predatory wars on behalf of the corporations.
Let’s look at one small example of the many examples. I am talking about BankUnited. BankUnited was one of the banks that went under due to the bursting of the housing bubble initiated by the collapse of the subprime market. The bank was taken over by John Kanas and his private equity backers, the Blackstone Group and the Carlyle Group.
Blackstone was founded by Peter Peterson a former US commerce secretary worth $2.8 billion according to Forbes and Stephen Schwartzman, a financier worth around $6.5 billion according to Forbes. Carlyle’s founders David Rubenstein and William E Conway are worth $2.8 and $2.7 billion respectively. Government service opens a lot of doors for the coupon clippers, the imbecile Dan Quayle sat on the board of Cerberus, another well-known private equity gang. He’s a moron but as a former US VP he can open doors for coupon clippers.
Anyway, Kanas, a banker himself, liked the idea of taking over this Florida lender that was in trouble. He made some nice cash selling his bank to the larger Capital One for $13 billion earning a handy $214 million in the deal Business Week writes. Like all bottom feeders Kanas was on the lookout for good deals as the banks began to topple. He worked for another major coupon clipper and billionaire, Wilbur Ross and came across BankUnited.
Kanas, Blackstone and Carlyle put up $900 million to invest in BankUnited but what a deal the taxpayer gave them. The FDIC ensured the coupon clippers that the deal would pay off by promising that the taxpayer would “eat” most of the future losses that would inevitably occur as a result of the poor banking practices that led to the crash. The deal also ensured that the taxpayers would, “….reimburse BankUnited for 80% of the first $4 billion in losses and 95% of all additional losses”, according to BW. The taxpayer via the FDIC also gave the coupon clippers $2.2 billion in cash to help them along. Needless to say, this sparked a lot of interest in such deals from other scavengers throughout the land.
So Kanas came in, laid off more than 600 employees and as Business Week puts it, “built a commercial bank.”. Yes, they build everything in society these guys. BankUnited now deals primarily in commercial business rather than residential mortgages.
It is well known that trillions of dollars were allotted to the bankers as them and their bankrupt system were dragged from the edge of the abyss. Kanas admits that his deals would not have been possible without the taxpayer, “the deal covered losses for ten years” Business Week points out. Well, whoopy f*%king doo.
BankUnited has “a long life ahead of it” says Kanas. Maybe it does, maybe it doesn’t. But this small example of the amount of money in society and what the political representatives of capital do with our wealth, crushes the argument that workers can’t make gains and deserve a more productive and secure life. Billionaires make their money off the backs of workers with the help of their government that gives them the breaks.
The rich have always had socialism; they just oppose it for the rest of us.