President Obama is Wall Street's "chief damage control officer" according to Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein.
"He has failed miserably to fix the Wall Street system that is ruining our economy - and the recent $2 billion JP Morgan fiasco is further evidence of that. His role is to talk tough when Wall Street misbehavior hits the headlines, and to appropriate to himself the role of the one who will fix the problem. This essentially heads off all other attempts at true reform. After the story fades from the headlines, he cuts a deal that protects the status quo. President Obama is a facilitator, not a reformer. He will never change the Wall Street system."
Stein was especially critical of the President's recent praise for CEO Jamie Dimon who oversaw JP Morgan's investment strategies. "The President kept emphasizing how smart Dimon is, as if that is a justification for letting him play fast and loose with people's money. Well, Mr. President, there is a time to blow the whistle on a pack of thieves, even if they're smart thieves. I want to be a different kind of president. The smarter the thieves are, the harder I will work to unravel their clever schemes."
Stein noted reports that the JP Morgan investment executive who oversaw the $2 billion loss had earned over $31m in the past two years. "That's the kind of cash that our economy is hemorrhaging into the pockets of the Wall Street elite while ordinary people can't get banks to refinance their mortgages" Stein observed.
"President Obama justifies his so-called reforms by saying they will protect Wall Street from collapse. There are two things wrong with his approach. First, he has no intention of making the real, substantive changes we so desperately need to reign in the wheeler-dealers. And secondly, he shouldn't be trying to perpetuate the status quo and let Wall Street grow even more powerful. Wall Street needs to become a much less influential player in determining the life and death of our economy. We need to break up the big Wall Street banks, take major capital investment decisions out of their hands, and create an economy in which small businesses and workers grow prosperous instead of being robbed."
Stein has proposed a "Green New Deal" that would break up the big Wall Street banks and emphasize state development banks that would get credit directly to small businesses and homeowners. "When the foreclosure crisis hit, the President gave interest-free loans to the big banks. But instead of loaning that money to families facing eviction, the banks bought Treasury bonds to make a quick profit for themselves while families were tossed out on the streets. I'm going to end the President's trickle-down approach. I'm going to bypass the Wall Street banks and help state development banks loan directly to the families that need help."
Noting that "Republican Mitt Romney now says he wants to repeal the ineffective Dodd-Frank legislation, Stein decried what she called "the phony script that is being written for the 2012 presidential race".
“So now we're supposed to go through the 2012 presidential race with two candidates, a Republican pushing for repealing regulation and a Democrat arguing for preservation of ineffective regulation. The American voter is supposed to choose between dumb and dumber, and Wall Street escapes in either case. It is vitally important that the Green Party break through to let the American people hear a third opinion and know that they don't have to vote for increasing the financial clout of the Wall Street elite. Without a third voice, the election will end with a phony mandate for four more years of increasing Wall Street empowerment. Millions of voters are ready to vote against that, and that's why we are working so hard to be on the ballot."