Albion Monitor Issue 173 SEPTEMBER 2008
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Wall Street and Washington:     How the Rules of the Game Have Changed
© 2008 Patrick Chappatte   All Rights Reserved

FREE! What is Washington to do as the financial system collapses? Clearly, stark differences in approach as well as in public policy have already emerged. Bail-out Bear Stearns and pump up the brokerage and investment business with new lines of credit. Nationalize Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac on the backs of the taxpayer -- but let Lehman drown. Tell the financial community to save itself, after which Bank of America salutes and buys Merrill Lynch. Then, the Fed gets cold feet and decides it can't let an institution the size of the insurance giant AIG go under as well. Washington is left staring into the abyss. The old rules no longer apply.

And that's the point. At moments of crisis since the mid-1980s, the relationship between Washington and Wall Street has changed fundamentally, at least when compared to anything that would have been recognizable in the previous century. As a result, the road ahead is dark and unknown

The Other Cost of the $700 Billion Bailout: All Foreign Credibility

Countries will now be more likely to seek loans and aid from China

Europe: Time to Rethink 'Wild West Capitalism'

Debate whether hedge funds and short selling are ultimately destructive

Suicide Bomb Attack on Islamabad Marriott Called 'Pakistan's 9/11'

Hotel was symbol of foreign influence, U.S.-friendly government

Neo-Cons, Israeli Hardliners Behind Giveaway of Islamophobic DVD

Movie that compares threat posed by radical Islam to Nazis currently distributed via newspaper inserts in key electoral "swing" states

White House, State Dept. Fought Over U.S. Airstrikes Inside Pakistan

Reportedly most heated debate over use of force in Bush's presidency

Bolivia Claims Evidence of U.S. Plot to Overthrow Government

Morales says U.S. funding rebel groups involved in acts of sabotage and killings of unarmed Native people

Is Bush Trying to Overthrow Bolivia's Democratically Elected Government? FREE!

Using aid money to support anti-government conservatives

Bolivia Tells U.S. Ambassador to Get Out

Supporting political opposition and reportedly met with rightwing separatist groups

Remembering the Obama Presidency

FREE! Right after the 2008 elections, I sat down and wrote my first report on the new world to come. And it was as if we futurologists could see for miles and miles and miles into a sunlit future.

The new team in Washington, I wrote, would move quickly to clean up the worst messes created by the Bush administration. They would close down Guantanamo and reverse the U.S. position on torture. They would begin the long process of withdrawing troops from Iraq. They would initiate dialogue with Iran and continue engagement with North Korea. They would sit down with Chavez and Castro and even Hamas and Hezbollah. They would sign Kyoto. They would defeat the Taliban and finally capture bin Laden. They would repeal the tax cuts for the wealthy and renegotiate the free trade agreements, and launch an Apollo-style program to develop alternative energies.

Of course, my pessimistic brethren in the profession countered with their own "end is nigh" predictions. The new team wouldn't be able to fulfill any of their promises. It was too late. We stood one minute before midnight on the Doomsday clock, and when that moment passed we wouldn't be at noon, and there would be no Hollywood endings.

As it turned out, we were all wrong

Bush Bluster Over Georgia Paints U.S. Into Corner

Do we really want to be providing arms to a former Soviet province in conflict with Russia?

Scramble to Protect Arctic's Northwest Passage

As greenhouse gas pollution destroys Arctic ecosystems, countries like Canada are spending millions not to halt the destruction but to exploit it

U.S. Airstrike Inside Pakistan Expands War Against Taliban

Pakistan quick to condemn raid that killed 20+

Todd Palin No Eskimo Poster Boy

"First Dude" Todd doesn't share economic misery, discrimination, and neglect of Native Alaskans

Palin's Tie to Secessionist Alaska Movement Recall Civil War

And how is secessionist Alaska different than Latinos' call for secessionist Aztlan?

Thailand Near Collapse as Pro-Democracy Movement Shuts Down Services

Sympathizers drawn from affluent bankers, middle-class, bureaucrats and the old-moneyed elite

Outlawed Taliban Have Free Run of Pakistan Media

Has the thriving Urdu-language press become Taliban mouthpiece?

Bush Had No Plan to Catch Bin Laden after 9/11

Rumsfeld refused to develop plans to block escape routes into Pakistan

Book: Cheney, Aide Directed 'A Policy of Deliberate Cruelty'

While Bush supported the overall strategy, he was almost a minor player

Book: Confessions of an Abu Ghraib Interrogator

Soldier became a conscientious objector while he was stationed at the prison

U.S. Still Giving $40 Billion in Subsidies to Oil Giants

Bush even authorized an additional $32.9 billion in 2005

Mexico City: 12 Tons of Daily Garbage With Nowhere to Go

Huge city dump to close in January, but no alternate site


Next up for Iraq: Ethnic Conflict With the Kurds?

"Honeymoon" between Kurds and the Iraqi government is over

At Baghdad's Top Hospital, Conditions Continue Decline

No senior doctors around, equipment often unsterilized, patients left to buy medicine from black market

Iraq Awash in "Missing" Weapons

Subcontractors for U.S. company tied to unrestrained arms trading

Maliki Pushing U.S. Aside as Fast as Possible

Demands control of Iraqi prisoners, timetable for U.S. exit, signing oil deals excluding U.S.

Maliki Resisting Merge of Iraqi Army and Sahwa Militia

Fears that Sunnis who used to fight with al Qaeda in Iraq could again reverse loyalties


Polls Show Racism Could Throw Election to McCain

1 in 3 whites, both Democrat and Republican, have negative views about African Americans

Swiftboaters Take Less Public Role in 2008 Attacks

Focus on direct-mail, website, and whispering campaign to raise Obama's "negatives"

2008 Was Whitest GOP Convention in 40+ Years

Similar to Nixon's 1968 convention, where his "Southern strategy" played well with anti-civil rights crowd

Ron Paul Draws Thousands To "New Right" Convention

Anarchists join GOP defectors and Jesse Ventura supporters outside McCain's convention

2008 Convention Protests Echo 1968 FREE!

Media singled out for police attack at GOP convention

Sarah Palin's Job: Fire Up Anti-Abortion Zealots

Poll showed anti-choice VP would mean 2-3% bump in election

White House Rushes to Expand Secrecy as Bush Term Nears End

"Black" programs now account for about $31.9 billion, or 18% of the Pentagon budget

Israel Policy Caps Palestinian, Expands Jewish Presence in E Jerusalem

Aims of forcing Palestinian population to less than 20% of contested city

Israel Not Talking to Palestinians - and Palestinians Not Talking to Each Other

Fight over whether Abbas legally entitled to stay in power beyond January 2009

Russia Slams Western Media for Pro-Georgia Bias

Charges propaganda 'made it out like a conflict between an authoritarian country versus a democratic one'


Joe Conason

A Special Prosecutor for Wall St

The "Reform" McCain Wants to Forget

Two Bridges to Nowhere

Why Bristol's Baby Matters


Robert Scheer Not the People to Guard the Public Purse

McCain's Gramm, Obama's Rubin

Freddie McCain, Fannie Palin

Palin's Payouts


Alexander Cockburn Is This The Stake Through Neo-Liberalism's Heart?

Bank Reform Anathema to McCain

Georgia Conflict Could Lead to New Cold War

One Cheer for Sarah Palin


Steve Young Talk Radio Attacks Its Own

Don't Drink and Vote...Again

Tropical Storm Rush Building up Steam

Where's Sarah?

Paging a New FDR

FREE! "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself" is the phrase that everyone remembers, but here's a little more of what FDR had to say: "This is preeminently the time to speak the truth, the whole truth, frankly and boldly. Nor need we shrink from honestly facing conditions in our country today."

Mr. Bush, you are no FDR. In his address to the nation Wednesday evening, he said that the government was blameless for the financial crisis; it had done what it was supposed to do but had been victimized by overseas lenders, greedy banks and Americans taking on more credit than they could carry. And as he has done too often before, he tried to make us afraid

Albion Monitor
Issue 173

Editor: Jeff Elliott (

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