In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Oct. 14, 2008 / 15 Tishrei 5769

Where are the street protests?

By Ed Koch

Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It is surprising that with all the financial pain felt by the U.S. population including the many individuals with 401K plans invested in the stock market, there have been no street protests demanding more immediate and effective action from our representatives in Congress and the White House.

When the war in Vietnam dominated our political lives in the 70s, angry crowds marched in every big city and raging rallies were held in Washington, D.C. Every member of Congress was visited by protesters. I was there in the Longworth building actively opposing the war receiving anti-war constituents nearly every day. Until recently, there were regular demonstrations in the streets and on college campuses demanding that the troops in Iraq come home.

The absence of protests now when our economy has been driven into the ground by greed on Wall Street and in Washington is a mystery. We saw some of that greed uncovered when the CEO of Lehman Brothers, Richard Fuld, Jr., was interrogated before the House Oversight Committee chaired by Henry Waxman. I served with Waxman when I was in the Congress from 1969 to 1977, and there could be no better legislator to make public what happened. According to Fox News, "Richard S. Fuld Jr., chief executive officer of Lehman Brothers, declared to the committee 'I take full responsibility for the decisions that I made and for the actions that I took.' He defended his actions as "prudent and appropriate" based on information he had at the time. 'I feel horrible about what happened,' he said."

The New York Times reported that "...in response to a question from Dennis J. Kucinich, who wanted to know how Mr. Fuld's public statements could be valid in light of efforts by JPMorgan Chase to secure $5 billion in extra collateral from Lehman in the final days," Mr. Fuld stated, "'No, sir, we did not mislead our investors. To the best of my ability at the time, given the information I had, we made disclosures that we fully believed were accurate."

Really? The Times also reported, "At one point on Monday, Mr. Fuld was confronted with an internal memo dated June 8 that included warnings about Lehman's condition and asked the question, 'Why did we allow ourselves to be so exposed?' Mr. Fuld, after a long scan of the memo, said, 'This document does not look familiar to me.'"

Does anyone believe him? I think few, if any, do. Will he be punished? Some say he had an estimated fortune of $3 billion which has been reduced to $30 million, and that is punishment enough. I do not agree. I believe that if Fuld deliberately misled the investing public, he should be pursued criminally and civilly, and is only one of many who should be held accountable.

I don't know whether Fuld is criminally responsible for the debacle. But all of us are aware of the financial void into which we have fallen. According to CNN, "...the Dow ended its worst week ever Friday, capping a staggering eight-session sell-off that resulted in a 2,400-point loss. It's not just the size of the loss keeping investors on edge, it's also the gyrations. On Friday, the Dow whipsawed, falling as much as 697 points in the first minutes of trading before quickly climbing back into positive territory, only to turn lower shortly after." What bothers people, in addition to the pain of seeing their hard earned retirement funds disappear, is not to see those who caused it identified and, where grounds exist, criminally pursued. Surely, some of those CEOs, CFOs and directors committed fraudulent acts. What the public demands is that those who engaged in crimes be punished. In all likelihood, nothing will happen to them. It is reminiscent of the cigarette company CEOs who testified under oath before Congress that they did not believe there was any connection between cigarette smoking and cancer. Millions of smokers died from cancer, but none of those CEOs were charged with perjury.

I am surprised that no civic leaders or political parties have been able to stir the public to take to the streets in peaceful protest. Ought there not be a public rally in every city, particularly New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., led by respected, responsible civic leaders who will convey the anger and fears of the electorate to the Washington lawmakers and demand the kind of leadership provided by FDR back in the days of the Great Depression?

People are really hurting. Those living on fixed incomes, including retirees, are wondering how they will be able to pay their bills, while those nearing retirement are doubting whether they will be able to afford to retire. Millions of Americans who have recently examined their stock statements have found their assets depreciated by as much as 42 percent from their high. Last week, the S&P was 35 percent below its 200 day moving average. The last time that occurred was when Franklin Delano Roosevelt was president.

Yes, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke appear to be taking action, but apparently, not enough. The public is frightened and wants to know where were our leaders when the debacle was unfolding. The public wants to know when will those who are politically responsible for our agony be held accountable and when will those criminally responsible be facing judges and juries. Even if the measures recently taken by governments around the world begin to work and restore confidence and the stock markets rally, those responsible for the debacle should be held accountable.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Edward I. Koch, the former mayor of New York, can be heard on Bloomberg Radio (WBBR 1130 AM) every Sunday from 9-10 am . Comment by clicking here.


© 2008, Ed Koch