“Something is rotten in the state of Denmark.” Hmmm.. The New Yorker is promoting the Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen as the protective grandmother for the middle class and unemployed. Conspicuously absent in Nicholas Lemann’s profile in the magazine is her track record.
Yellen’s Clinton Era and Recent Highlights:
- Backed the repeal of the landmark Glass-Steagall bank reform;
- Supported the 1993 North American Free Trade Agreement;
- Endorsed establishing a new statistical metric that would allow the federal government to reduce Social Security payments over time, by revising the consumer price index;
- Advocated cutting veterans’ benefits;
- Rejected concerns that increased concentration in banking as an antitrust risk;
- Supported cap and trade;
- Complained about deadbeat borrowers declaring bankruptcy in 1997.
Does this seem like someone who is concerned with unemployment and the middle class?
Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) proves to be our Marcellus. During a congressional hearing on the compliance of our oligopoly banks with the “too-big-to-fail” laws requiring them to craft plans for their own orderly breakups, Warren takes Yellen to the mat. Warren points out that at the time of its bankruptcy, Lehman had $639 billion in assets; today, JPMorgan has nearly $2.5 trillion in assets. In addition, Lehman had 209 subsidiaries when it failed; today, JPMorgan has 3,391 subsidiaries, or more than 15 times the number Lehman had when it went under.
Yves Smith at Naked Capitalism has an excellent critique exposing the cozening grandmother that has no accountability to 146 billion voters.