Actor, investor, entrepreneur and author Wayne Rogers says the Occupy Wall Street crowd may have good reason to be upset over our seemingly perpetual economic crisis but they're demonstrating against the wrong people.
"It isn't the financial people who caused the mess," Rogers told Yahoo's Breakout. "It's the Congress who did it."
According to Rogers, the economic problems that the nation is facing today stem from the repeal of part of 1933's Glass-Steagall Act in 1999.
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After the repeal, large financial institutions on Wall Street went on a “drunken binge,” as President George W. Bush put it, taking huge risks with other people’s money once they had created exotic and confusing financial instruments (called derivatives) that allowed them to “privatize profits and socialize risks,” the Sky Valley Chronicle reports.
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The Chronicle also reported that Congress was forewarned and notes that the proof can be found in a video making the rounds on the Internet that shows Rep. John D. Dingell, D-Mich., on the floor of the House in 1999, delivering a speech against repealing these financial regulations.
He argued that repealing the law would allow banks to become "too big to fail," which would cause instability in the financial system, the Chronicle reported.
Congress repealed the law and the nation suffered the tragic consequences of the 2008 financial crisis about a decade later. That led to the Great Recession, which America and the world suffer from to this day, the Chronicle added.
Wayne acknowledges that banking fat cats have raked in billions. But blaming a banker for being greedy is like blaming a dog for barking — It's simply the nature of the beast, Rogers told Breakout.
The way to create real change is to demand it from the people over whom Americans have some control, Wayne said.
Rather than protesting people too insulated by wealth to care what anyone says about them, Rogers suggests focusing on the source: "Put two million people on the Washington Mall; then Congress will listen," he told Breakout.
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