Barack Obama is going to make a speech about bank bonuses, and announce his plan to raise a levy to pay for the cost of the US bank bail-out.
President Barack Obama at a roundtable discussion on healthcare during a visit to the Children's National Medical Center in Washington, DC in July. A new sheaf of opinion polls shows Americans sharply divided on Obama's first year in office, as his ratings on key issues like health care and the economy hit new lows.(AFP/File/Saul Loeb)
He plans to announce a new fee Thursday on the country's biggest financial firms to recover up to $120 billion in taxpayers' money used to prop up corporations during the economic crisis, a senior administration official said.
President Barack Obama, accompanied by Vice President Joe Biden, finishes a statement about the earthquake in Haiti, Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2010, at the White House in Washington.
According to me, this will be "Much ado about nothing".
Banks once threatened by the undertow of a Wall Street collapse are now posting profits and proposing robust bonuses for their executives.
The proposed levy could put Obama on the popular side of public opinion that is decidedly against Wall Street and angry over shortfalls in a $700 billion bank bailout fund.With public anger over the bailout still strong, Obama has embraced populist rhetoric in an effort to shame bank executives into paying back the government more quickly and their executives less lavishly.
But there have been only words, no deeds.
. President Barack Obama makes remarks about the devastation caused by the earthquake in Haiti as Vice President Joe Biden listens at the White House in Washington, January 13, 2010.REUTERS/Jim Young (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS DISASTER)
Another news event has obliged Mister O. to react :
the earthquake in Haiti.
Of course, he must pretend that he is shocked by the tragedy, and he must announce a large US relief effort for Haiti.
But be sure that Mister O. will do his best to protect the interests of the big financial groups and bankers who got him elected, and who have told him what to do since he was elected.
There is nothing to hope about his speech today : he will talk a lot, as usual, will use lofty words reading his teleprompter, but will take no concrete measure, as usual.
Obama's announcement would come one day after the nation's top bankers testify before the congressionally created Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission. The hearings come at an ultra-sensitive time for the banking industry. In addition to Obama's fee proposal, Congress is writing a full-scale overhaul of financial regulations.
The bankers' demeanor before the commission, the tone of the commission's questions and the continuing inquiry could affect public perceptions and influence how lawmakers and the White House deal with the industry.
The bankers have recognised they may have made some mistakes, but as everybody knows each of them will get almost 200 million dollars in bonuses, thanks to the money given by American taxpayers.
. President Barack Obama (2nd R) meets with CEOs of several small and community banks in the Roosevelt Room at the White House in Washington December 22, 2009.REUTERS/Jim Young (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS BUSINESS)
Speaking about Haiti, let's compare the figures :
an inhabitant of Haiti earns a little more than one euro a day ; American bank executives got about more than 200 000 dollars in bonuses last year thanks to the government bail-out fund financed by the American taxpayers !
So please, Mister O., stop shedding crocodile tears when you speak about the Haitian population, or when you denounce banks bonuses, calling bankers "fat cats" !
Everybody is waiting for concrete actions, and you could do something to change the world if you really wanted to. But you don't, you are only a puppet in the hands of the world top bankers and financial interests.
I'm fed up with your hypocrisy, your empty words which do not mean anything.
Record bonuses in 2009, your first year as president.
The American population is freezing and starving, unemployement has never been so high, thousands of people have just died not far from you, and you, and all your friends the bankers continue to behave selfishly, thinking about yourselves and not giving a damn about the world's misery. You are the one who is obscene !
The recent fiasco in Copenhagen showed that the environment is not a real priority, and what happened in Haiti reminds us that Nature is sometimes taking a revenge, alas.
What we are actually seeing in Florida (tropical climate under the cold) or in the French region "la Bretagne" -Brittany- (oceanic climate, and yet some snow falling like never before), is another proof that there is something wrong with our planet.
But, once again, don't believe what presidents will say :
Obama will promise he is determined to lead his country in a fight against climate change. He will do his best to convince Congress, this is what he says...
But what actually worries him is not the climate, it's the promise he made to his friends, the bankers. Everybody knows that green jobs and green energies will develop in the future, and the economy will largely depend on them, so bankers and big companies have understood they must invest in this field. So Obama is only here to defend their interests for the future, and to help them make big profits on the Co2 market...
Now presidents do not govern, they communicate, in France, it's exactly the same with Sarkozy, who always talks, but never acts.
Enough is enough !