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This article appears in the August 2, 2013 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

LaRouche PAC Demands Action
on Glass-Steagall This Week

by Nancy Spannaus

[PDF version of this article]

July 30—"Bankrupt the Wall Street Bastards, Restore Glass-Steagall, Recess Is Cancelled." That is the message which the LaRouche PAC Policy Committee is taking to Washington, D.C. for a third intensive week of activity aimed at passing the legislation that will crush Wall Street, and setting the stage for a real physical-economic recovery, just as Franklin Roosevelt carried out 80 years ago.

The LaRouche Policy Committee, a team of six young political leaders of the LaRouche movement, took their cue from Lyndon LaRouche himself, who engaged in a substantive dialogue about the nature of the transformation which Glass-Steagall must usher in, during his July 26 webcast. In that address, LaRouche emphasized the time factor, and the need for total commitment to victory. "A Glass-Steagall victory is the only chance for the survival of civilization," he said. "Otherwise, there is no civilized solution. And one of those non-solutions is nuclear power, thermonuclear fusion, as a weapon."

In a statement made to colleagues the next day, LaRouche stressed that the Glass-Steagall policy, whose initial content is contained in three bills now before the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives (H.R. 129, S. 985, and S. 1282), can be passed in the days ahead, if the battle for their passage is waged the right way. Crucial evidence for that assertion comes from the momentum for the bills currently evident on Capitol Hill, especially since the introduction of the second Senate bill a little more than two weeks ago.

'Glass-Steagall: The Last Chance'

On July 28, the LaRouche PAC Policy Committee issued the following call for mobilization in Washington and around the country. It is accompanied by a mass leaflet.

"As the case of Detroit should make clear to anyone, there is no time for pragmatism or 'go-along-to-get-along' politics this week. Detroit is not being declared bankrupt because of petty corruption by a local mayor. Our nation has been in decline since the assassination, 50 years ago, of President John F. Kennedy, and then, that of his brother, both of which were followed by a horrible paradigm shift typified by the Indo-China war, the rock-drug-sex counterculture, and the environmentalist movement. That coup was consolidated on Sept. 11, 2001, when the events of the day were used, as Lyndon LaRouche warned that they would be, to impose dictatorial policies on the people of the United States. Between 12 years of Bushes and 5-plus years of Obama, thus far, we are at the end of the line.

"Every city in America is Detroit this week, and this is why anyone who wishes to survive, knows that Glass-Steagall must be reinstated immediately. Do you really believe that Camden, N.J.; or Stockton, Calif.; or Chicago, Ill.; or Buffalo, N.Y. are in better shape? Do you seriously believe that once all the city workers lose their pensions, as Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder wishes them to do, the city will be poised for recovery? Do you like the Dodd-Frank policy of looting the 'unsecured creditors,' that is, the depositors, to cover the losses of what should be considered criminal activity?

"Most Americans don't like these policies, and as a result, nearly half of the 50 states have introduced resolutions into their state legislatures in support of H.R. 129, the 'Return to Prudent Banking Act' which would reinstate Glass-Steagall. This bill has over 70 co-sponsors in the House, and there are now two Glass-Steagall bills in the U.S. Senate (S. 985 and S. 1282) with seven Senators from across the political spectrum on board.

"This fight has become so intense in the last weeks, that dark-suited bankers from JPMorgan, Bank of America, and elsewhere, have appeared in state houses to attempt to intimidate lawmakers from even thinking of supporting Glass-Steagall. These Wall Street lobbyists are on the Hill going from office to office to attempt to stop the generally cowardly Congress from acting in time to save the nation.

"The fight is intense because it is now clear that this fight can be won! It is not necessary to kill off our elderly and poor. It is not necessary to record every American's every conversation to keep them from rebelling against a fascist coup! We defeated the British Empire over two centuries ago, and we can finish them off now, but time is short. The Congress must not be allowed to leave town without taking action to defend the people in a time of war. Glass-Steagall must be voted on and passed this week! Don't be a pragmatist, be a patriot!"

Even Congress Remoralized

According to the official schedule, Congress is scheduled to leave town on Aug. 2. Should they do so without passing Glass-Steagall, the way will be open for Wall Street banksters to move ahead with their murderous plans to steal pensions, cancel health care, and otherwise ram through their fascist police-state measures. The only alternative is to bankrupt Wall Street, before they bankrupt the rest of the country.

The potential for accomplishing what the LaRouchePAC Policy Committee is demanding is evident in a palpable shift in mood on Capitol Hill itself. Over the last two weeks, LaRouchePAC organizers have found that Congressmen who previously saw their sponsorship of Glass-Steagall as a "good but unwinnable gesture," are beginning to get the sense that victory can be won.

One turning point was the July 11 introduced of S. 1282, the "21st Century Glass-Steagall Act," by Senators

  • Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.),
  • Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.),
  • John McCain (R-Ariz.), and
  • Angus King (I-Me.).

This grouping has been highly vocal and polemical, and received a barrage of media coverage—both positive and negative. There are now two additional sponsors on S. 1282, Democrats

  • Barbara Mikulski (Md.) and
  • Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.).

The second Glass-Steagall bill in the Senate followed on the introduction of S. 985, "Return to Prudent Banking Act of 2013," by Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) on May 16. S. 985 is a companion bill to Rep. Marcy Kaptur's (D-Ohio) H.R. 129 "Return to Prudent Banking Act of 2013," which now has 71 co-sponsors, including five on the House Financial Services Committee, the committee responsible for holding hearings on the bill.

Over the past week, leading supporters of Glass-Steagall have taken an increasingly high profile in Congress, to press for passage of the bill. On July 23 Reps. Kaptur and Walter Jones (R-N.C.) released a "Dear Colleague" letter to all members of Congress, asking for their support on H.R. 129. On the same day, Kaptur gave a Special Orders speech on the House floor, also urging others to co-sponsor, and citing such disasters as the declared bankruptcy of Detroit as what has to be stopped.

A special briefing, sponsored by the Main Street Alliance and Americans for Financial Reform, was held in the Senate July 18, featuring Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation vice-chairman Thomas Hoenig and former IMF chief economist Simon Johnson pushing for the passage of one or both of the Senate bills.

Constituent Pressure

Critical to the sense of urgency on the Hill, has been the intervention from constituents. Detroit political leader and School Board head LeMar Lemmons III visited Washington on July 24 and 25, to press the need for Glass-Steagall as a solution to his city's disaster. Lemmons met many Congressmen, and gave a short address to the Congressional Black Caucus, demanding action. His discussions about how Glass-Steagall's repeal led to the rape of Detroit, had an electric impact on the Hill, which was replicated in the discussions LaRouche PAC organizers and citizen activists had with Congressmen and their aides.

The National Farmers Organization and state legislators are also pushing to get the Congress to pass Glass-Steagall.

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