April 11: "A New Way Forward" Protests Against Too Big to Fail Banking

A lot of readers are very unhappy about the bank bailouts, particularly given the lack of any meaningful financial services industry reforms.

Kvetching is therapeutic, but productive action is better. I recommend looking at “A New Way Forward“”s website. If its goals appeal to you, I suggest you consider joining the protest scheduled for Saturday April 11 (most major and some smaller US cities seem to have one planned).

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  1. LJR

    Tally Ho!

    I’m going to use this as an excuse to meet my neighbors. It’s obvious that we can’t rely on anyone in the halls of power to represent our interests.

  2. ndk

    I’ll be attending my local edition here in Denver, though I wish it’d been in front of the K.C. Fed’s branch instead of the State Capitol. Oh well — there’s always the next bailout.

    I’m not entirely sure how to go protesting, though. It’s my first one. The etiquette? The clothing? The best way to avoid (or encourage) the perception that you’re a serial protester?

  3. joe c


    Thank much for informing people about this. Saturday is meant to be a beginning to a small “d” democratic reform effort. Your writing on this whole debacle has been invaluable.

    Joe Costello

  4. alex black

    I realize that politics make for strange bedfellows, but I’m not sure I’m ready to hit the sack with Code Pink, one of the many hard-left organizations listed among the supporters.

    I got a feeling most of them will hit Obama with a feather, and take a nail-studded 2×4 to All of Their Other Usual Suspects, relevant or not.

    Glad to see them calling out their Messiah though. “Incoming from The Left, Mr O!”

    I find the protest from the right kind of amusing – go-galt.org. Organizing people to send in thousands of copies of Atlas Shrugged to Bernanke, Geithner, Obama, their Congressional reps, until their offices are flooded with paperbacks. Yeah, yeah, I know, Ayn Rand is one crappy writer, but it’s funny to think of Nancy Pelosi having to wade through a pile of Capitalist Manifestos to get to her phone and start legislating the Next Move – the way to pay for all of these bailouts and “stimuli”.

  5. Anonymous

    Protest is needed, but the target here is entirely wrong. The correct target is Congress and Treasury and Fed. They never should have bailed out any firm. This so-called “solution” of more, smaller banks does not unwind the critical error of bailing out even one of them, big or small.

  6. Anonymous

    I will be out there trying to send a message to the oligarchy (NO BAILOUT)that this pond scum is unhappy.


  7. Independent Accountant

    I have advocated a 1% asset limit on bank size for years. With about $14 trillion in assets, that means entities like Citibank, the Bank of America and JP Morgan could not exist. I agree with the objectives of this website having said for years, if a bank is TBTF, it is too big. Period.

  8. joebhed

    When is A New Way Forward the old way forward?

    I’m glad that they have a certain activism around “banking” reform.
    Maybe someday they will come to the conclusion that what is really needed is monetary reform.
    And then we can really move forward,

    If we go back to Glass Steagall and the FDIC we will see these were the compromises that prevented the real rform of Soddy and Simons from becoming reality.

    If you want to have your grandkids do this all over again, go ahead.
    If you want to PREVENT the banks from ever having the ability to deregulate themselves back to 2007, then go with Stephen Zarlenga’a American Monetary Act reforms, and have your congresspeople attend the AMA workshop at the Cannon House Office Building on April 23rd.
    There is something happening here.
    But private debt-money creation banking size ain’t it.
    Frederick Soddy said it all.

  9. Richard Kline

    So joe c, small ‘d’ is not only the best ‘D’ But the only democracy any good and worthy of the name. I’m a lifelong aversion to electoral politics but a commitment to communitarian solutions of similar duration. Thanks for doing the leg work and pixelation of this all. I’d heard about it, and will be going. As it happens, the assembly in my burg is not only three blocks from my residence but across the street from my athletic club, I’ll exercise my conscience and then my backhand.

    The point is not so much the specific goal of action, although the stated goals here are good: it is to get folks into the street and focused on taking charge of the change that we need. It’s fer damn sure that no one and no thing born or lodged inside the Beltway will favor the public interest on this in anyway _whatsoever_. Public pressure is what brings about real reform. ‘Inside reform,’ and ‘top down’ reform are twisted in their own corruptions inherently when not buttressed by real and widespread public expectations. Sooo time to build some of the latter.

  10. patrick neid

    Looking at the list of sponors this has very little to do with banking and bailouts and a whole lot to do with larger political goals.

    What a motley crew. They are not against intervention on a massive scale they are just against the current form. But “Plans” they want, most of which have nothing to do with the fiscal crisis.

  11. Linden

    I think you’re confusing the list of supporters with the list of sponsors. CodePink is a supporter, not a sponsor, which simply means they’re going to help rally people to come out. Yves is a sponsor.

  12. Anonymous

    I’ll second that Patrick/Joebhed!!

    Yves, I’m disappointed that this blog seems to be morphing into something political. I have serious questions about why you would lend your name to that list of loons?? I used to believe I could come here and be filled with objective analysis. When I first found this blog, I enjoyed the fact that I could find no undertone or hint of political leanings. It appears that may not be the case now.

    Banks should be in the business of lending!!! This crap has been going on too long..it’s almost as American as baseball and that is what needs to end.

    When have we truly practiced free markets in this country????? (Alan Greenspan!! ha)

  13. Anonymous

    I do not have a problem with the protest, nor with the idea of breaking up the banks.

    However, as stated above, the real problem is with Congress, both with Democrats and Republicans.

    Until we drop the partisanship (and the list of supporters for this adventure leaves me guessing that taking on Congress and dropping partisanship will never be a goal) then we’ll get stuck with the same old beginning we’ve always had.

    Good idea, bad implementation.

  14. Moopheus

    “Another good protest is to close all accounts with banks that took TARP money as advocated in this article:

    And for God’s sake, if you are doing any kind of business with Goldman please cease and desist immediately.”

    That’s what I’ve been saying. The only protest that will matter in the end is protest with our dollars. The only way to reduce the power and influence of Wall Street and the big banks is to shrink them, and the only way to shrink them is to not do business with them.

    I’d also add: pay cash, hold cash, and stop making contributions to your 40K.

  15. Anonymous

    I believe the only realistic way the PPIP gets derailed at this point is if Paul Volcker resigns. I think he is the only person with enough heft to change the policy. The major economists have all spoken out at this point, and no one in power seems to care. If the Republicans had any brains they would hold a public hearing and have the likes of Krugman, Sachs, etc. speak out about how big a ripoff this is, but the Republicans don’t have the brains or the guts to do somthing like that. I don’t think a few hundred liberal activists protesting in every city is reallly going to accomplish much. I agree with the earlier poster that the Code Pinkm et al. will not direct their anger to the appropriate parties. Any thoughts on how to contact or influence Volcker, or what else can be done?

  16. jfwells

    I am having some maternity wear printed up with the phrase, “Too Big to Fail!” on it for my wife. Sadly, only a few people get the financial pun.

  17. triozyg

    Wonderful approach. Having worked at the lowest of the low levels in Congress during the S&L bailout I know its possible for Congress to actually pass laws to takeover corrupt institutions. Maybe every 20-25 years its just a necessary spring cleaning?

    If you haven't protested before, be prepared for all manner of strange types on the fringe (and trying to grab the limelight).

    It takes guts to put your name out there like this, Yves, and I appreciate you're doing this.

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