by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
The Republican Party presidential campaign has been relegated to a sideshow in the American power game. The white nationalist masses recoil at the scent of Wall Street denizens like Mitt Romney. “A deeper atavism is at play in Republican ranks, a far less malleable strain of reaction that is no respecter of the GOP establishment’s brand of bling.” Wall Street money is once again betting on Obama, the man that delivered them “resurrection from the 2008 meltdown and a pipeline in perpetuity to the financial innards of the U.S. treasury.”
The GOP Savages Itself, While Wall Street Backs the Black Guy, Again
by BAR executive editor Glen Ford
“Why in the world would Wall Street consider for one second trading in Obama for whatever wounded animal emerges from the Republican presidential menagerie?”
The Republicans savaged each other with a cannibalistic gusto envenomed by mega-doses of anonymous Super PAC money. At the end, a heap of battered clowns lay bleeding on the straw-strewn Iowa barn floor, a farm team not ready for the big leagues with Obama.
Mitt Romney’s 8-vote Iowa caucuses edge over national nonentity Rick Santorum and libertarian Ron Paul is the best evidence yet that the Tea Party phenomenon has crippled the GOP’s ability to herd the White nationalist American masses into any corral that smells of Wall Street. Romney’s corporate persona and money, the kind of credentials that once drew small town Jaycees and other Republican worker bees like nectar, have lost their mass appeal in the White Heartland. A deeper atavism is at play in Republican ranks, a far less malleable strain of reaction that is no respecter of the GOP establishment’s brand of bling – which is one reason Mitt can barely buy a break.
The Lords of Finance Capital, who, like their multinational corporations, have no home team (or national) loyalties, put their money on Barack Obama last time around and have profited beyond their most speculative dreams. Obama may not have saved finance capital from terminal decline, but he temporarily rescued Wall Street from its inherent self-destruct mechanisms (contradictions) through what they hope is a permanent umbilical to the American State. Their early investment in candidate Obama bought them resurrection from the 2008 meltdown and a pipeline in perpetuity to the financial innards of the U.S. treasury. It’s the sweetest deal ever bribed or brokered. Why in the world would Wall Street consider for one second trading in Obama for whatever wounded animal emerges from the Republican presidential menagerie?
“The last thing the smart cookies on Wall Street need is to associate themselves with Republican presidential contenders’ crude and fawning wealth-worship.”
A factoid in the January Harpers magazine Index brings the point home. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, employees of the investment firm Bain Capital, co-founded by Romney, donated $69,500 to their former boss’s campaign. They gave considerably more to Obama: $119,900. That’s about the ratio of Wall Street’s lopsided contributions to Obama in 2008 – before he funneled tens of trillions of the dollars into their coffers. This marriage has been consummated.
On the foreign front, where most of Wall Street’s money is made, Obama has in less than three years managed to renew the U.S. global offensive that was shattered by the Iraqi resistance under Bush’s watch, with catastrophic damage to American prestige in the world. Where Bush the Cowboy managed to isolate the U.S. from its imperial allies, the First Black President has led NATO to become an expeditionary force under American tutelage with the 7-month bombing campaign against Libya, and blunted the Arab Spring through deepening ties to autocracies in the Persian Gulf. The Empire is on a roll in service of multinational capital. Cosmetic regime change in Washington would not serve Wall Street’s purposes.
Especially with the advent of the Occupy Wall Street movement, the last thing the smart cookies among the Lords of Capital need is to associate themselves with Republican presidential contenders’ crude and fawning wealth-worship. Far better to fill up Obama’s billion dollar campaign war chest and swallow hard while he makes mildly populist noises that give voters the impression they have a stake in the presidential election exercise – that the 1% don’t really rule.
The Republican candidates are tightly locked in their clown fight-cages, as Glenn Greenwald recently wrote in The Guardian UK: “Because Obama has governed as a centrist Republican, these GOP candidates are able to attack him as a leftist radical only by moving so far to the right in their rhetoric and policy prescriptions that they fall over the cliff of mainstream acceptability, or even basic sanity.”
White madness will feed Black fears. In the saddest of historical ironies, the group hurt worst by Wall Street’s crimes will once again wind up on the same side as Wall Street’s money in the presidential race. Some will even fantasize that Obama will show his “true, Black” side in his second term. The Republicans aren’t the only ones that are crazy.
BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at [email protected].