President Trump’s economic and foreign policy agenda is jaw-dropping in scale, scope and consequence. There are multiple simultaneous aspects to each policy objective; they have been outlined for a long time even before the election victory in November ’16.
If you get too far into the weeds the larger picture can be lost. CTH objective is to continue pointing focus toward the larger horizon, and then at specific inflection points to dive into the topic and explain how each moment is connected to the larger strategy.
Today is a big news day where action on multiple policy fronts becomes visible. Here’s an interview with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin which notes some of the critical financial angles to economic policy.
An important reference here is the earlier understanding of how then ‘candidate Trump’ personally put a platform plank of a Modern 21st Century Glass-Stegall banking reform into his economic policy agenda, and why it is important.
Here’s the dive:
“We support reinstating the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 which prohibits commercial banks from engaging in high-risk investment,” said the platform released by the Republican National Committee. (link)
CONTEXT – Beyond the larger context of Globalists -vs- Nationalists (Americanism), the internal opposition to Common Sense economic conservatism (Americanism) can be broken down into two categories:
♦ The first group are those who are fundamentally naive about large and historic economic issues; and how the economy was changed, forced to change through the past forty years, by financial interests who created a second, “false“, paper economy.
This first group is generally young, pseudo-intellectual, and their only reference is while formally educated within the last thirty years (they’re under 50). Most of the oppositional (conservative) punditry falls into this category. [Important to note, this group is also joined by the majority of politicians who are approximately the same age.]
♦ The second group are those who truly know better. They are older and wiser, they know the truth because they saw it unfold. However, they are also financially dependent on retention of a global narrative that sold the change in the past 40 years. These are the willfully blind who have sold-out to the benefit of, and enrichment from, the false economy.
This second group is intent on retaining a historic set of false assumptions by fraud and deception. Mark Levin, Rush Limbaugh, Chris Matthews and Hugh Hewitt fit into this second grouping. Their framework echo-chambered and passed down to the younger group #1.
Exhibit “A” would be conservatives standing at 2016 CPAC to applaud Speaker Paul Ryan who passed a $2+ trillion Omnibus spending bill (December 2015) to ensure 8 straight years without a budget. See the disconnect?
The world-view of the first group (younger voices, CPAC seal-clappers) is fundamentally seeded on social issues. They are in no position to speak accurately about economic matters because they don’t have a reference point underpinning their expressed outlook. Their economic arguments are esoteric opinions, and they never experienced the era of industrial giants.
♦ In most of the modern post-war industrial era (1950-1980) banking was a boring job and only slide rule bean-counters and actuarial accountants moved into that sector of the workforce. Most people don’t like math – these were not exciting jobs. Inside the most boring division of a boring banking industry were the bond departments within the larger bank and finance companies.
The excitement was in the actual economy of Main Street business. The giants of industry created businesses, built things, manufactured products, created innovation and originated internal domestic wealth in a fast-paced real economy. Natural peaks and economic valleys, as the GDP expanded and contracted, based on internal economic factors of labor, energy, monetary policy and regulation.
Main Street generated the pool of politicians because the legislative conduct of politicians had more impact on Main Street.
The business agents had a vested interest in political determinations. Political candidates courted industrialists, business owners, and capitalist giants to support them. Main Street USA was in control of DC outcomes.
Despite the liberal talking points to the contrary, this relationship was a natural synergy of business interests and political influence. It just made sense that way, and the grown-ups were generally in charge of it.
♦ Commercial banks courted businesses because bankers needed deposits. Without deposits banks could not generate loans; without loans banks could not generate profits…. and so it was. By rule only 10 percent of a commercial bank’s income could stem from securities.
One exception to this 10% rule was that commercial banks could underwrite government-issued bonds. Investment banks (the bond division) were entirely separate entities. The Glass-Steagall banking laws of 1932 kept it that way.
However, mid 1970’s bank regulators began issuing Glass–Steagall interpretations -that were upheld by courts- and permitted banks and their affiliates to engage in an increasing variety and amount of securities activities. After years of continual erosion of the Glass-Steagall firewall, eventually it disappeared.
This became the origin of the slow-motion explosion of investment banking. If you look back historically from today toward the mid-’80’s (ish) what you will find is this is also the ultimate fork where economic globalism began overtaking economic nationalism.
Banks could now make money, much more money, from investment divisions issuing paper financial transactions, not necessarily dependent on actual physical assets. The transactions grew exponentially.
A few decades later the bond market portion ultimately led to the ’07/’08 housing collapse, and derivative trading (collateralized debt obligations or CDO’s) generated trillions of paper dollars. Business schools in the 1980’s began calling this the second economy (a false economy, or the invisible economy).
The second economy, which ultimately became the global economy, is also the Wall Street investment economy. Two divergent economies: Wall Street (paper), and Main Street (real).
There is no real property, real capital, real tangible assets in the Wall Street economy. The false economy is based on trades and financial transactions, essentially opinions. Paper shifts, and buys and sells based on predictions and bets (derivatives).
Insurance products create an even larger subdivision within the false economy as hedgers wagered on negative outcomes. The money wagered is exponential – some say more than a quadrillion currently floats.
IMPORTANT ♦ Now you realize, in hindsight, there had to be a point where the value of the second economy (Wall Street) passed up the first economy (Main Street). Investments, and the bets therein, needed to expand outside of the USA. hence, globalist investing.
However, a second more consequential aspect happened simultaneously.
The politicians became more valuable to the Wall Street team than the Main Street team, and Wall Street had deeper pockets because their economy was now larger.
As a consequence Wall Street started funding political candidates and asking for legislation that benefited their interests.
When Main Street was purchasing the legislative influence the outcomes were beneficial to Main Street, and by direct attachment those outcomes also benefited the average American inside the real economy.
When Wall Street began purchasing the legislative influence, the outcomes therein became beneficial to Wall Street. Those benefits are detached from improving the livelihoods of main street Americans because the benefits are “global” needs. Global financial interests, investment interests, are now the primary filter through which the DC legislative outcomes are considered.
There is a natural disconnect.
♦ When Speaker Paul Ryan says: “Donald Trump and I come from two different wings of the party”, he is specifically pointing out this disconnect, yet few draw attention to it.
Trump represents the Main Street wing, Ryan represents the Wall Street wing.
Going back to the opening paragraphs. The news and opinion punditry never take the time to explain the root cause of the disassociation, because: A) Group one doesn’t understand it; and B) Group two is compensated to remain willfully blind, and to ignore it.
Yes, there is a fundamental ideological conflict within this 2016 election: