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Economics, OWS

Occupy the SEC

Despite the fact that people might tell you that all is quiet on the homefront, there are some really interesting things going on that have sprung up out of the Occupy movement.  And contrary to public perception, there are concrete ideas and solutions being discussed, pursued and even implemented.

The tremendous part about it is that it is regular citizens that are being empowered to think and act for themselves, not waiting on a politician, advocacy group or business leader to determine what path they think should be pursued.  There are groups thinking about new ways of fighting foreclosures.  There are groups trying to set up new, alternative banks that embody the principles they (and by extension others) would like to see.

And now there is a group called Occupy the SEC which has thrown its hat in the ring with the big boys to try to defend and influence the financial reform debate around the Volcker Rule, which says that commercial banks cannot engage in proprietary trading.  Seven citizens have been meeting and discussing the rule in a working group, divided up the questions that were presented for comment by the government and, astonishingly, produced a 325 page response on the vast majority of them which, judging by the response from different circles, is very well informed, well reasoned and seeks to negate a lot of the talking points that the financial community (by that, specifically I mean, the largest banks such as Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Citigroup, Bank of America, etc.) have been spitting out which says that economic calamity will ensue if the rule is adopted.  Of course, as Felix Salmon writes, that’s with the erroneous assumption that what’s good (or bad) for JP Morgan is necessarily equivalent to what’s good (or bad) for the general economy…a lesson we’ve seemed to have forgotten all too easily.

That being said, if interested, I would recommend reading up on the Occupy the SEC letter.  Here are a couple of interesting articles I saw.  If there are others that you have read, please do share…

Here’s the actual report if you like reading 325 pages of comments: http://www.occupythesec.org/

And some commentary from those that already have….

  1. http://blogs.reuters.com/felix-salmon/2012/02/14/occupys-amazing-volcker-rule-letter/
  2. http://www.businessweek.com/finance/occupy-the-sec-weighs-in-on-the-volcker-rule-02142012.html
  3. http://www.salon.com/2012/02/15/occupy_defends_the_volcker_rule/singleton/
  4. http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/02/occupy-the-secs-comment-letter-objects-to-excuses-for-watering-down-volcker-rule-ows.html 




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