San Miguel de Allende It’s a dogpile now, so I feel totally justified in saying “I told you so” for the umpteenth time after years of being a Cassandra about the damage that Jamie Dimon, JP Morgan Chase CEO, and his bank had done to the country by bullying the Treasury Department and Obama Administration on regulations, foreclosures, and god knows what else. There’s no particular joy in reading about the $2 billion and rising loss at the bank despite red lights and sirens going off to warn them to duck and cover, largely because so much of the damage is done.
The banks have practiced naked self-interest and self-survival while pretending to have wise counsel and a voice in public policy as millions lost their homes and struggle to find work and decent wages in the worst recession in most Americans’ lifetimes. Dimon on the other hand thinks he’s still got a horse in the race as he sneers that the “pundits” will be coming for him now. Dude, you better hustle or you might even find out what the unemployment line looks like yourself.
Other banks seem to have realized that Dimon, Chase, and their derivative arrogance has cost them dearly. Perhaps Dimon will get the message soon. He needs to go, and shame on his board for not doing the deed when they meet in June.
Meanwhile, it’s time to revisit the compromises and lost opportunities around financial protections and real regulations on banking again. It’s not a matter of being “too big to fail,” but recognizing that big banks are public concerns not private playthings, and need to be steered to a proper course with the national economy and public interest foremost and everything else, way, way later.