Sunday, August 01, 2010

Elizabeth Warren - Obama's Test of Masculinity

Elizabeth Warren is really the only candidate to chair the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Agency (CFPA). If Obama does not appoint her, it will prove he has no balls.

Warren is a professor of law at Harvard Law School. Her entire career has been devoted to studying middle class economics, and she is a recognized expert in the field. I first heard of her in 2004 when she testified before Congress about the Bankruptcy Reform legislation - a bill strongly supported by banks and credit card companies to correct bankruptcy abuse that was allegedly widespread. Warren testified about the study she had done on bankruptcies of middle class families, half of which were due to unexpected medical expenses - and 75% of those families had medical insurance. Of course, the Republican Congress ignored her and instead listened to the banks and passed the bill - which has had a devastating effect on middle class families but was very beneficial to banks. Some of the perks it gave banks contributed to the massive bank failure.

Warren was appointed to, and became Chair of, the Congressional Oversight Panel that was created to investigate the US big bank bailout. In that capacity, she represented the interests of the public - and not the banks - and insisted on transparency and accountability. Her position did not give her power to actually do anything, but her reporting what was happening and what should be happening was, needless to say, not very appreciated by Big Banks or by the U S Treasury Department.

Warren is the mother of the CFPA. She has been lobbying incessantly for its inclusion in the financial reform legislation recently signed into law. Every time the Big Banks and Secretary Geithner thought they had it killed, Warren came roaring back. Without her, it would not have survived.

Warren is so obviously the only candidate for CFPA Chair. Aside from having created the Agency, she has the necessary knowledge of the arcane American financial system. She also has the credibility to protect the American people, especially the middle class. Plus, she is blatantly independent and not beholden to anyone - except the public. So who would possibly oppose her? Easy answer - Big Banks - and they have a lot of influence. But also the Secretary of the Treasury, who doesn't want anyone overseeing what he's doing - especially some uppity woman he can't control.

If Obama does not appoint her, he will confirm his lack of balls. All those voters who were so hot for him when he ran for President are going to discover he really is impotent. This will be the kiss of death for the Democrats in the 2010 elections - not to mention the end of any meaningful financial reform.